Dr. Tabachnick served as dean of the Graduate School of Basic Medical Sciences from 1973 until 1980. He earned his undergraduate degree in biochemistry at City College of New York, and his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in biochemistry at the University of California-Berkeley. In addition to his role as dean, Dr. Tabachnick held the faculty title of professor of biochemistry at New York Medical College.
As a biochemist, he became renowned for his research on the thyroid gland and the thyroid hormone, thyroxine. His research involved what was then a new technique, radioimmunoassay, in his studies of the binding of thyroxine and growth hormone to albumin and their effects on glucose metabolism.
Students at New York Medical College voted Dr. Tabachnick as “funniest professor” on several occasions.