We are studying how phosphatidylinositol 4,5 bisphosphate (PIP2), a membrane lipid, regulates the actin scaffold in proliferating and apoptotic cells.
We focus on the lipid kinases that synthesize PIP2 (phosphatidylinositol phosphate 5 kinases, PIP5Ks) and PI4P (phosphatidylinositol 4 kinases, PI4Ks), as well as the regulatory proteins that respond to PIP2 and PI4P.
Helen was born in Shanghai, China, and grew up in Hong Kong. She graduated from Mount Holyoke College summa cum laude with a B.A. in Biology and from Harvard Medical School with a Ph.D. in Physiology. Her postdoctoral fellowships were under Z.A. Cohn, M.D., (Rockefeller University) and T.P. Stossel, M.D. (Harvard Medical School and the Massachusetts General Hospital). Helen became an Associate Professor at Harvard Medical School in 1985. She joined UT Southwestern as a Professor of Physiology in 1989.
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