Gary J. Patti
The Power List 2021
Michael and Tana Powell Associate Professor, Departments of Chemistry and Medicine, Siteman Cancer Center, Nutrition Obesity Research Center, Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri, USA
In another life… I would love to be a philosopher. I enjoy thinking about big questions and abstract ideas, particularly those related to epistemology. Finding patterns and themes that integrate a collection of seemingly unrelated observations has always fascinated me. I am notorious for raising deontological questions in group meetings and quoting Plato’s “The Republic” in lectures.
Heroes? Two of my mentors are Gerty and Carl Cori. They built an empire for studying metabolism at Washington University and ended up training six other Nobel Prize winners. They were among the first to study metabolic pathways between tissues in an organism. Most impressively, they made seminal discoveries with relatively few supplies and without modern technologies, such as MS-based metabolomics.