Joseph Leonard Goldstein


Joseph Leonard Goldstein
(1940)


American molecular geneticist who, along with Michael S. Brown, was awarded the 1985 Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine for their elucidation of the process of cholesterol metabolism in the human body.
Goldstein received his B.S. degree from Washington and Lee University, Lexington, Va., in 1962 and obtained his medical degree from the Southwestern Medical School of the University of Texas at Dallas in 1966. Goldstein became friends with Brown when they were both working as interns at Massachusetts General Hospital from 1966 to 1968. Goldstein then conducted research under the auspices of the National Institutes of Health from 1968 to 1972, studying genetically predisposing factors that caused the accumulation of blood cholesterol in people prone to heart attacks. He returned to teach at the Southwestern Medical School in Dallas in 1972 and was there reunited with his colleague Brown.

The two men then began a concerted study of the processes affecting the accumulation of cholesterol in the bloodstream. In the course of their research they discovered that low-density lipoproteins (LDL), which are primary cholesterol-carrying particles, are withdrawn from the bloodstream into the body's cells by receptors on the cells' surface. The genetic absence of these LDL receptors was found to be the cause of familial hypercholesterolemia, a disorder in which the body's tissues are incapable of removing cholesterol from the bloodstream. The new understanding of the cell receptors' role in the regulation of cholesterol levels in the bloodstream spurred the successful use of drugs and the manipulation of diet in lowering blood cholesterol levels.

From 1976 Goldstein was professor of medicine and from 1977 chairman of the department of molecular genetics at the University of Texas Health Science Center in Dallas.


Main Page | About Us | All text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License. Timeline of Nobel Prize Winners is not affiliated with The Nobel Foundation. External sites are not endorsed or supported by http://www.nobel-winners.com/ Copyright © 2003 All Rights Reserved.