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Dr. Carlos N. Pato Named Dean of the College of Medicine at SUNY Downstate Medical Center

Brooklyn, NY – Carlos N. Pato, MD, has been named dean of the College of Medicine at SUNY Downstate Medical Center, effective July 2015. Dr. Pato was selected upon completion of an extensive national search.

Dr. Pato is currently the Franz Alexander Professor of Psychiatry and chair of the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California (USC). A renowned clinician and researcher into the genetics of neuropsychiatric disorders, Dr. Pato has held a number of prestigious academic positions, including vice chair of psychiatry and associate dean for clinical affairs at SUNY Buffalo; associate chief of staff for research at the Washington, DC VA Medical Center; and several research center directorships.

Dr. Pato is a graduate of Brown University. He completed his MD and research training at the University of Cincinnati and his residency in psychiatry at Massachusetts General Hospital.  A fellowship at the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) followed his residency. At NIMH, he coordinated the development of the Diagnostic Centers for Psychiatric Linkage Studies program and the National Cell Repository, Schizophrenia Research Branch.

Under Dr. Pato’s leadership, USC’s Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences greatly expanded its research portfolio, recruiting eminent scientists who pioneered methods for brain transcription mapping and single cell transcription studies that have been integral to the development of the Center for Genomic Psychiatry (CGP) at the USC Keck School of Medicine. CGP investigates the molecular and genetic causes of neuropsychiatric disorders and supports projects ranging from basic research and resource development to targeted investigations of genetic variants in specific disorders and gene environment interactions.

Collaborating with his spouse, Michele Pato, MD, Dr. Pato has focused his research on genomic psychiatry with an emphasis on population-based genetic studies. He and his colleagues have received more than $90 million in NIMH funding.

John F. Williams, Jr., MD, EdD, MPH, FCCM, president of SUNY Downstate, said, “I am confident Dr. Pato will build on Downstate’s strong reputation and advance the status of our College of Medicine as a leader in biomedical research, teaching, patient care, and community service. I know I speak for everyone on our campus in welcoming both Dr. Michele Pato, who will continue her research here at Downstate, and Dean Carlos Pato.”

Dr. Pato is the author or co-author of well over a hundred scholarly articles. He has delivered invited lectures at and otherwise participated in scores of professional conference proceedings across the globe. His honors and awards include an honorary PhD (doutoramento) in medical genetics from the Universidade de Coimbra in Coimbra, Portugal, his place of birth. He most recently served as president of the American Association of Chairs of Departments of Psychiatry and was elected a member of the American College of Psychiatrists in 2010. In 2003, he was named a distinguished fellow of the American Psychiatric Association.


About SUNY Downstate Medical Center

SUNY Downstate Medical Center, founded in 1860, was the first medical school in the United States to bring teaching out of the lecture hall and to the patient’s bedside. A center of innovation and excellence in research and clinical service delivery, SUNY Downstate Medical Center comprises a College of Medicine, College of Nursing, School of Health Professions, a School of Graduate Studies, School of Public Health, University Hospital of Brooklyn, and a multifaceted biotechnology initiative including the Downstate Biotechnology Incubator and BioBAT for early-stage and more mature companies, respectively.

SUNY Downstate ranks twelfth nationally in the number of alumni who are on the faculty of American medical schools. More physicians practicing in New York City have graduated from SUNY Downstate than from any other medical school.