Joseph L. Goldstein is currently Chairman of the Department of Molecular Genetics at UT Southwestern Medical Center. In 1985, he was named Regental Professor of the University of Texas. He also holds the Paul J. Thomas Chair in Medicine and the Julie and Louis A. Beecherl Distinguished Chair in Biomedical Science. Dr. Goldstein and his colleague, Michael S. Brown, discovered the low density lipoprotein (LDL) receptor and worked out how these receptors control cholesterol homeostasis. At the basic level, this work opened the field of receptor-mediated endocytosis, and at the clinical level it helped lay the conceptual groundwork for development of drugs called statins that lower blood LDL-cholesterol and prevent heart attacks.

Drs. Goldstein and Brown shared many awards for this work, including the Lasker Award in Basic Medical Research (1985), Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine (1985), and National Medal of Science (1988). In recent work, Drs. Goldstein and Brown discovered the SREBP family of transcription factors and showed how these membrane-bound molecules control the synthesis of cholesterol and fatty acids through a newly described process of Regulated Intramembrane Proteolysis. For this work, Drs. Brown and Goldstein received the Albany Medical Center Prize in Medicine and Biomedical Research (2003).

Dr. Goldstein is currently Chairman of the Albert Lasker Medical Research Awards Jury and is a member of the Boards of Trustees of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute and The Rockefeller University. He also serves on the Scientific Advisory Boards of the Welch Foundation, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, Scripps Research Institute, Van Andel Institute, and the Massachusetts General Hospital. He is a member of the US National Academy of Sciences and a Foreign Member of the Royal Society.

Presented his talk, "How to Become a Successful Scientist" for the UT Southwestern 2023 New Faculty Research Forum.


Washington and Lee University (1962)
Medical School
UT Southwestern Medical Center (1966)

Research Interest

  • Cholesterol and Lipoprotein Metabolism
  • Genetics of Human Disease


Featured Publications LegendFeatured Publications

Lysosomal cholesterol export reconstituted from fragments of Niemann-Pick C1.
Trinh MN, Brown MS, Seemann J, Goldstein JL, Lu F Elife 2018 Jul 7
BHLHE40, a third transcription factor required for insulin induction of SREBP-1c mRNA in rodent liver.
Tian J, Wu J, Chen X, Guo T, Chen ZJ, Goldstein JL, Brown MS Elife 2018 Jun 7
Retrospective on Cholesterol Homeostasis: The Central Role of Scap.
Brown MS, Radhakrishnan A, Goldstein JL Annu. Rev. Biochem. 2017 Aug
Cholesterol-induced conformation changes in the sterol-sensing domain of the scap protein suggest feedback mechanism to control cholesterol synthesis.
Gao Y, Zhou Y, Goldstein JL, Brown MS, Radhakrishnan A J. Biol. Chem. 2017 Apr

Honors & Awards

  • Rolf Luft Prize
  • Earl and Thressa Stadtman Distinguished Scientist Award
  • Albany Medical Center Prize in Biomedical Research
  • Warren Alpert Foundation Prize
  • U.S. National Medal of Science
  • Albert D. Lasker Award in Basic Medical Research
  • Nobel Prize In Physiology or Medicine

Professional Associations/Affiliations

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