Dr. Hofmann has a long interest in enzymes of lipid metabolism. As a graduate student in the MSTP program at Washington University under the direction of Dr. Majerus, she purified and characterized the enzyme PI-specific phospholipase C, demonstrated its dependence on diglycerides and calcium, and provided evidence for multiple forms of the enzyme. In 1986, she moved to the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas to pursue a postdoctoral fellowship in the laboratory of Drs. Michael S. Brown and Joseph L. Goldstein, where she worked on the mechanism of sterol-dependent repression of LDL receptor synthesis and demonstrated the role of the LDL receptor in lipoprotein metabolism in transgenic mice. In 1989 she joined the Division of Hematology-Oncology in the Department of Internal Medicine, where the focus of her laboratory has been on protein S-fatty acylation, the modification of proteins by fatty acids on cysteine residues. In the mid-1990s her laboratory discovered a new lysosomal enzyme, palmitoyl-protein thioesterase, and its role in a neurodegenerative disease of children called infantile Batten disease. Honors include the Jacob K. Javits Neuroscience Investigator (MERIT) Award, induction into the American Society for Clinical Investigation and Association of American Physicians and as a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. In 2014 she received the Avanti Award in Lipids of the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology in recognition of her work in infantile Batten disease. Dr. Hofmann currently teaches benign hematology to medical students and fellows at University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, sees patients at Parkland Hospital, and is working to develop a fourth-year medical school course, Frontiers in Medicine, aimed at helping students integrate scientific knowledge into the clinical care of patients.
No financial relationships have been disclosed.