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Interview with 2021 medicine laureate Ardem Patapoutian

Updated: Oct 18, 2021

“I’m of Armenian origin. I grew up in Lebanon, and I pretty much fled to the U.S. when I was 18. I think it has had a huge influence on me. You know, growing up in a war-torn country, I couldn’t even imagine having a career in science. Coming here was a great shock, but at the same time, I think it’s always been in me not to take things for granted because of my tough childhood and all the things that I experienced. I think that’s helped me in appreciating what I have and knowing what a privilege it is to get the education I’ve gotten here—to have the government fund basic science, which I think is a no-brainer in the sense that not only are discoveries great, but all practical applications come from basic discoveries. And I think the U.S. is still one of the best places in the world that encourages this.”

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