Gail Hecht
  • Professor
  • Division Director, Gastroenterology
  • Residency Program Director, Gastroenterology
  • Gastroenterology
  • Microbiology and Immunology
Board Certifications
  • Gastroenterology - Subspecialty Cert: AM Board of Internal Medicine
  • Internal Medicine - General Cert: AM Board of Internal Medicine
Research Summary

The focus of Dr. Hecht’s research is host-pathogen interactions with specific emphasis on enteropathogenic Escherichia coli and enterohemorrhagic E. coli. Her goal is to determine how the bacterial effector proteins that are translocated into intestinal epithelial cells by these pathogens alter host cell physiology including tight junction barrier function, active ion transport processes, and the innate immune response. Her research is funded by both the NIH and the VA. She also has an interest in the gut microbiome and its impact on intestinal function and health.


Actin pedestal formation by enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli enhances bacterial host cell attachment and concomitant type III translocationBattle,S. E.; Brady,M. J.; Vanaja,S. K.; Leong,J. M.; Hecht,G. A.INFECTION AND IMMUNITY 2014 ; ( ):

Enteropathogenic E. coli Effectors EspG1/G2 Disrupt Microtubules, Contribute to Tight Junction Perturbation and Inhibit RestorationGlotfelty,L. G.; Zahs,A.; Hodges,K.; Shan,K.; Alto,N. M.; Hecht,G. A.Cellular microbiology 2014 ; ( ):

Expression of EPEC Map is significantly different than that of other type III secreted effectors in vivoNguyen,M.; Rizvi,J.; Hecht,G.INFECTION AND IMMUNITY 2014 ; ( ):

AGA's approach to the microbiomeHecht,G.Gastroenterology 2014 ;146(4):1119-1121

Microtubules Are Required for Efficient Epithelial Tight Junction Homeostasis and RestorationGlotfelty,L. A.; Zahs,A.; Iancu,C.; Shen,L.; Hecht,G. A.American journal of physiology.Cell physiology 2014 ; ( ):

What's the Value of an FDA IND for Fecal Microbiota Transplantation in Clostridium difficile Infection?Hecht,G. A.; Blaser,M. J.; Gordon,J.; Kaplan,L. M.; Knight,R.; Laine,L.; Peek,R.; Sanders,M. E.; Sartor,B.; Wu,G. D.; Yang,V. W.Clinical gastroenterology and hepatology : the official clinical practice journal of the American Gastroenterological Association 2013 ; ( ):

Bacterial infections of the small intestineHodges,K.; Hecht,G.CURRENT OPINION IN GASTROENTEROLOGY 2013 ;29(2):159-163

Interspecies communication in the gut, from bacterial delivery to host-cell responseHodges,K.; Hecht,G.The Journal of physiology 2012 ;590(Pt 3):433-440

Medical School
  • Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine
  • University of Minnesota Hospital and Clinics, Internal Medicine
  • Brigham and Women's Hospital/Harvard Medical School, Gastroenterology

Dr. Hecht is Professor of Medicine and Microbiology/Immunology and Chief, Gastroenterology and Nutrition at Loyola University Chicago. She earned her MD from Loyola University Stritch School of Medicine, completed Internal Medicine Residency at the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, and her Fellowship in Gastroenterology at Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School. Her initial faculty appointment was at the University of Illinois Chicago where she rose through the ranks to Professor and was appointed Chief of Digestive Diseases and Nutrition. She relocated to Loyola in her current position in January 2013. She serves as Editor-in-Chief of a new journal Gut Microbes published by Landes Bioscience. Dr. Hecht has been very active in the American Gastroenterological Association functioning as Chair of the Intestinal Disorders Section of the AGA Council, as Basic Research Councilor to the Governing Board and ultimately serving as President from 2009-2010, only the second woman to serve in that capacity.

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