Dr. Heather Hirsch

Dr. Heather Hirsch is currently an associate principal scientist in Genetics and Discovery Pharmacogenomics at Merck Research Laboratories focusing on Oncology and Immunomodulatory Regulators. 

Prior to Merck, she was a post-doctoral fellow at Harvard Medical School in the laboratory of Kevin Struhl.  Work in the Struhl lab focused on (1) impact of transcription factor binding and chromatin modification/structure on the regulation of gene expression during differentiation, normal cell homeostasis and disease states; (2) investigating the effect of a well studied diabetes drug, metformin, on inhibition of cellular transformation, eradication of cancer stem cells, and in combination therapies with standard chemotherapy; (3) and investigating the connection between carcinogenesis and chronic disease states as described by transcriptional signatures and common gene networks.

 Heather received her Ph.D. in Cell and Molecular Biology in 2003 at Michigan State University studying the mechanisms of regulation of RNA polymerase III transcription by the retinoblastoma tumor suppressor protein. 
 
Heather is the 2014 recipient of the R. Gaurth Hansen Award.