Dr. Heck’s laboratory aims to understand the complex interactions of biochemical, genetic and environmental factors that underlie the development of human diseases, including cancer and multi-drug-resistant tuberculosis.
Department of Public Health
School of Health Sciences and Practice Building
Valhalla, NY 10595
Dr. Heck received her BA from Douglass College, New Brunswick NJ and her Ph.D. in Pharmacology and Toxicology from Rutgers University. She completed her postdoctoral training in the laboratory of Dr. Debra Laskin at the Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy of Rutgers University. She served on the faculty of Rutgers University and the University of Illinois before joining the faculty of NYMC in 2007.
Dr. Heck’s research interests are focused on understanding mechanisms of inflammation and toxicity mediating chemical-induced injury, wound healing and carcinogenesis. Her recent studies have included developing insights into the pro-inflammatory effects of light on biological systems and the roles of free radicals in skin, eye and lung inflammation; her current projects are largely focused on developing medical countermeasures, treatments and therapeutics to address the effects of chemical toxicants and agents of mass destruction on civilian populations.
Dr. Heck’s interests include analyzing and understanding the effects of environmental contaminants on sensitive populations, she has participated as an ad hoc member of numerous panels addressing these issues including the National Institutes of Environmental Health Sciences and US Environmental Protection Agency, Development of a preliminary research strategy relating to health and environmental aspects of exposure to dioxin and related compounds in Vietnam, and the NATO – Human Factors and Medicine Panel, HFM-14,9 “Defense Against the Effects of Chemical Hazards: Toxicology, Diagnosis, and Medical Countermeasures”. She serves as a team member of the NASA Technology Engineering and Aerospace Mission Support (TEAMS), International Space Station Air Quality Monitoring System Assessment team: Technology assessment for advanced chemical monitoring for life support. Dr. Heck also maintains an active interest in children’s environmental health and remains a member and advisor to the Children’s Environmental Health Center of the Hudson Valley.
Dr. Heck has received numerous awards including the American Thoracic Society New Investigator Research Award the Gallo Research Excellence Award, Cancer Institute of New Jersey, and the National Institutes of Health Shannon Award for Innovative Research. Dr. Heck has served as a member and an officer an advisor to societies focused on scientific research including the Society of Toxicology, the American Association for Cancer Research and the American Thoracic Society and the Society of the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole MA. She has presented her findings at numerous colloquia and institutions worldwide and is recognized as an expert in the fields of chemical biology and toxicology.
Post Graduate Studies: Laboratory for Host Defense Research, Dr. Debra Laskin, Rutgers University
Graduate Degree: Ph.D.
Graduate Degree Institution: Rutgers University
Undergraduate Institution: Douglass College