Lee J. Helman received his M.D. from the University of Maryland School of Medicine magna cum laude in 1980 and was elected to Alpha Omega Alpha. He completed his internship and residency in internal medicine at Barnes Hospital Washington University also serving as chief resident. Dr. Helman began his fellowship training at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) in 1983, where he has remained. He did his postdoctoral training in the Molecular Genetics Section, Pediatric Branch, NCI, and became head of the Molecular Oncology Section, Pediatric Oncology Branch, NCI, in 1993. He became chief of the Pediatric Oncology Branch from 1997-2007, and in 2007 became scientific director for clinical research in the Center for Cancer Research, National Cancer Institute, a position he currently holds.
Dr. Helman is a professor of pediatrics and oncology at the Johns Hopkins University. He was elected to the American Society for Clinical Investigation and the American Association of Physicians and is a founding member and past president of the Connective Tissue Oncology Society. He serves on the Board of Directors of and is a clinical advisor to The Children’s Inn at NIH and is a past member of the Board of Governors of the Clinical Center at NIH. Dr. Helman is a past member of the Board of Directors of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) and a past chair for its Bylaws Committee. He received the 2011 ASCO Pediatric Oncology Award and the ASCO Statesman Award. He has served on the Science Education, Publications and Clinical and Translational Research committees of the American Association of Cancer Research (AACR) and is chair of its Pediatric Oncology Task Force and has been on the Scientific Program Committee for several of its annual meetings. He serves on the Scientific Advisory Committee of Stand Up To Cancer, a scientific partner to the AACR. He is on the Scientific Advisory Committee of the Children’s Oncology Group. Dr. Helman served as an associate editor for the journal Cancer Research and Clinical Cancer Research and currently is on the editorial board of the Journal of Clinical Oncology.
Dr. Helman's laboratory currently focuses on three major themes related to the biology and treatment of pediatric sarcomas, specifically Ewing’s sarcoma, rhabdomyosarcoma and osteosarcoma: (1) determine the pathophysiologic consequences of IGF signaling; (2) identify the molecular/biochemical determinants of the biology of these sarcomas; and (3) apply preclinical laboratory findings to develop novel clinical studies for these sarcomas.