Michael S. Brown received a B.A. degree in Chemistry in 1962 and an M.D. degree in 1966 from the University of Pennsylvania. He was an intern and resident at the Massachusetts General Hospital, and a postdoctoral fellow with Dr. Earl Stadtman at the National Institutes of Health. In 1971, he came to UT Southwestern where he rose through the ranks to become a professor in 1976. He is currently Paul J. Thomas Professor of Molecular Genetics and Director of the Jonsson Center for Molecular Genetics at UT Southwestern.

Dr. Brown and his long-time colleague, Dr. Joseph L. Goldstein, together discovered the low density lipoprotein (LDL) receptor, which controls the level of cholesterol in blood and in cells. They showed that mutations in this receptor cause Familial Hypercholesterolemia, a disorder that leads to premature heart attacks in one out of every 500 people in most populations. They have received many awards for this work, including the U.S. National Medal of Science and the Nobel Prize for Medicine or Physiology.


University of Pennsylvania (1962)
Medical School
University of Pennsylvania (1966)

Research Interest

  • Genetics of human disease
  • Mechanism of vesicular transport in animal cells
  • Regulation of cholesterol metabolism and membrane composition


Featured Publications LegendFeatured Publications

Bifurcation of insulin signaling pathway in rat liver: mTORC1 required for stimulation of lipogenesis, but not inhibition of gluconeogenesis.
Li, S., Brown, M.S. and Goldstein, J.L. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 2010 107 3441-3446
Ghrelin O-acyltransferase (GOAT) is essential for growth hormone-mediated survival of calorie-restricted mice.
Zhao, T.-J., Liang, G., Li, R.L., Xie, X., Sleeman, M.W., Murphy, A.J., Valenzuela, D.M., Yancopoulos, G.D., Goldstein, J.L., and Brown, M.S. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 2010 107 7467-7472
HDL miR-d down by SREBP introns.
Brown, M.S., Ye, J., and Goldstein, J.L. Science 2010 328 1495-1496
Ghrelin secretion stimulated by Beta1-adrenergic receptors in cultured ghrelinoma cells and in fasted mice.
Zhao, T.-J., Sakata, I., Li, R.L., Liang, G., Richardson, J.A., Brown, M.S., Goldstein, J.L., and Zigman, J.M. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 2010 107 15868-15873
Identification of surface residues on Niemann-Pick C2 (NPC2) essential for hydrophobic handoff of cholesterol to NPC1 in lysosomes.
Wang, M.L., Motamed, M., Infante, R.E., Abi-Moshel, L., Kwon, H.J., Brown, M.S. and Goldstein, J.L. Cell Metab. 2010 12 166-173

Honors & Awards

  • Albany Medical Center Prize in Medicine and Biomedical Research
  • Warren Alpert Foundation Prize
  • US National Medal of Science
  • Albert D. Lasker Prize in Basic Medical Research
  • Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine

Professional Associations/Affiliations

  • American Society for Clinical Investigation
  • Association of American Physicians
  • Institute of Medicine
  • Royal Society (London)
  • U.S. National Academy of Sciences