Presented By

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  1. The Elevation of Tex-Mex
    Mico Rodriguez
  2. The Bounty of the Barnett Shale
    Kelcy Warren
  3. The Entrepreneurial Woman
    Tomima Edmark
  4. The Growth of the Vietnamese Community
    Jennifer Nguyen
  5. The Founding of Uptown
    Phil Cobb
  6. The Changing Face of Politics
    Craig Watkins
  7. The Brain Gain
    Dr. Hao Zhu
  8. The Four Sport Town
    Mike Modano
  9. The Underground Culture
    Katherine Owens
  10. The Catholic Migration
    Father Ivan Asencio
  11. The Organized South Asian Community
    John Hammond
  12. The Next Way to Develop
    Jeff Blackard
  13. The Allure of the Silicon Prairie
    Anousheh Ansari
  14. The lighting of Reunion Tower
    George Schrader
  15. The New Old Tradition
    Jennifer Moreno
  16. The Test Kitchen
    Mariel Street
  17. The Art Magnet
    Kevin Moriarty
  18. The Glamorous Return of Dallas Shopping
    Brian Bolke
  19. The Strengthening of the Gay Community
    Jack Evans and George Harris
  20. The Resurgence of Downtown Dallas
    Art Ortiz
  21. The Megachurch Boom
    Ed Young
  22. The Fundraisers
    Lynn McBee
  23. The Refuge
    Pedro Amaya
  24. The Reason Dallas Took Off
    Ron Barzyk
  25. The Girl Who Stayed Home
    Erykah Badu
  26. The Preservation of Our Historic Buildings
    Virginia McAlester
  27. The Thriving Ethiopian Community
    Birhan Mekonnen
  28. The New Dallas ISD
    Jessica Leija
  29. The Rebirth of the Trinity River
    Peter Payton
  30. The Trains Start Running
    Ladrika Davis Gross
  31. The Architect of an Art Scene
    Stephen Lapthisophon
  32. The Calculator That Changed the World
    Vonnie Howard
  33. The Rise and Fall and Rise of Deep Ellum
    Frank Campagna
  34. The Big Move
    Kendra Norwood
  35. The Expanding Empire in Fort worth
    Scott Hernandez
  36. The Family Recipe
    Chuy Cruz
  37. The Transformation of Oak Cliff
    David Spence
  38. The Now-Legal Immigrant
    Jesus Castillo Carrizales
  39. The City of Philanthropists
    Lyda Hill
  40. The Transplants
    Tara Vornkahl
00 The Brain Gain Wednesday, April 30, at 6:26pm in hi IT Southwestern Lab

Dr. Hao Zhu

Dr. Hao Zhu would like to make it abundantly clear that he didn’t plan to have an all-Asian lab. The cards just happen to fall that way when you’re researching organ regeneration and its implications for cirrhosis and liver cancer.

“It makes it easy when we go to lunch,” he says. “We just go to whatever Asian place we like.”

Between those lunches, Zhu runs one of four research labs at the Children’s Medical Center Research Institute at UT Southwestern Medical Center, a joint venture launched in 2011 to build upon the clinical expertise of Children’s and the scientific research of UT Southwestern. The Harvard Medical School grad had his pick of research opportunities—Memorial Sloan Kettering in New York, Duke University Hospital in North Carolina—but the Dallas offer stuck out.

“My first interview here, I thought, ‘Wow, there’s all these great scientists that I’m meeting,’ ” he says. “And after coming here, it’s really true. I came from Harvard, and I feel like there’s no drop-off. It’s even better than I thought it would be.”

In addition to his research—which, without hyperbole, could end up proving to be the base for extended human life and the regeneration of body parts, among other things—Zhu spends a half-day each week working at Parkland Memorial Hospital, where he sees the real-world implications of his work among patients with liver damage. He says it serves as a constant reminder that researchers need to come up with a better way to treat cancer.

And right now, he couldn’t imagine doing that work anywhere else.

“If you’re looking for an opportunity to do something big, then this city and institution welcome you with open arms,” he says. “That may be why there are a lot of Chinese labs here. People are looking for a big opportunity, and that invites the immigrant thing.”