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The Doctor is In

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The doctor is in at Berkeley’s Nutritional Science and Toxicology Department. Of the department’s 22 faculty and adjunct faculty, no fewer than four are M.D.-Ph.Ds, and their interdisciplinary training brings a uniquely broad and valuable perspective to Berkeley research.

This range of expertise is shared by only a small handful of other Berkeley professors.

“An M.D.-Ph.D. can see problems from both the clinical and basic research sides, and marry both of them in their research programs,” says Joseph Napoli, Chair of the Nutritional Science and Toxicology Department.

Like other department faculty, professors Chris Vulpe and Marc Hellerstein and adjunct professors Ronald Krauss and Dale Leitman study metabolic biology, which examines the impact of diet and nutrition on health and metabolism. Their medical experience qualifies them to set up clinical trials, overseeing every step of the path from lab bench to bedside.

The presence of so many M.D.-Ph.Ds makes the college a particularly good resource for students interested in the health professions. “If you really want to know what it’s like going to medical school, how you have to prepare, or what life afterwards is like, talk to these people. They know — they have the real-life experience,” Napoli says.

-Kathleen Wong


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