Patrick was born in Neustadt and der Weinstrasse, Southwest Germany, a town not far from Heidelberg and the French Border. His father was a Hungarian artist and his mother a wine chemist. This genetic background may have predestined Patrick to become a molecular biologist (who occasionally dabbles into studying yeast).
Patrick did his undergraduate degree (‘Vordiplom’) at the University of Tubingen (1983-1986) in Biochemistry and his Ph.D. at Oregon State University (OSU) on Peptide Growth Inhibitors in the laboratory of David Barnes (a pioneer of the development of serum-free cell culture technology, now at Mount Desert Laboratory, Maine.
Patrick then joined the laboratory of Ken van Holde, also at OSU and this brought him into the chromatin field.
He continued his studies of chromatin at the EMBL as postdoc in the laboratory of Peter Becker, now Professor at Munich University:
Patrick became a group leader at the Marie Curie Research Institute, Surrey, in 1997 and joined the Babraham Institute late in 2004. He is a member of the Epigenome Network of Excellence.