Frederick Robert Bieber (b. 09 February 1950) is a Medical Geneticist at Brigham and Women's Hospital, a member of the Faculty of Medicine at Harvard University, and a Consultant at the Massachusetts General Hospital and the Children's Hospital Boston.
Born in Canada, Bieber spent his early years in Strasbourg, Saskatchewan, a small prairie wheat farming community about 75 km NE of Regina, Canada. He is the son of a WW II veteran of the Royal Canadian Air Force who studied engineering at the University of Toronto, and a nurse who studied in Hamilton, Ontario. During his childhood in Strasbourg he developed a life long love of animals and the outdoors, and a near-obsession with farm equipment, especially farm tractors. When his family later emigrated to Rochester, NY he completed pre-college studies there and in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He attended public schools in Rochester, New York, was selected as the Standard Bearer of the Abelard Reynolds No. 42 School, and is an alumnus of Charlotte High School (Rochester, New York) and of Colegio Wardin Buenos Aires, Argentina. He was active in sports and music in high school and college where developed an interest in genetics during his studies of ethics and mathematics.
During his undergraduate studies at the State University of New York at Oswego, he spent a summer in research at the Jackson Laboratory in Bar Harbor, Maine, where he decided that further studies in human genetics would provide an opportunity to make contributions to genetics without having to perform research on experimental animals. While a graduate student at the University of Rochester he became interested in researching the genetics of hearing loss after recognizing that deafness and hearing disorders was one of the few phenotypes for which positive assortative mating was common. He then moved to the Medical College of Virginia (Richmond, VA)to work with Walter Nance, the preeminent geneticist/clinician working in this area under whose mentorship he earned a doctorate in human genetics. His doctoral research on the genetics of profound childhood utilized data from families with students attending the Maryland School for the Deaf in Frederick, MD. During his graduate studies at MCV, he developed broader interests in medical genetics, specifically the genetics of human maldevelopment and he published a paper in Science announcing the first description of polar body twinning in man. Upon completion of doctoral work he moved to Boston to commence a research fellowship at the Massachusetts General Hospital under the supervision of Lewis Ball Holmes and Shirley Driscoll. He joined the Faculty of Medicine at Harvard in 1983.
His academic work, based in the Department of Pathology at the Brigham and Women's Hospital, is focused on medical genetics, clinical cytogenetics, and forensic medicine. He has participated in the publication of over 100 articles and books on these subjects, including the acclaimed book "The Malformed Fetus and Stillbirth".
Bieber teaches at Harvard Medical School where he received a teaching award in 2003. He has also taught courses at Harvard College and the Harvard Extension School. He has delivered over 200 invited addresses at various universities and has served as a Visiting Professor at St. George's University in Grenada and at the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) in Cuernavaca.
His non-academic pursuits include forestry and wildlife management, animal welfare and greyhound adoption (Board of Directors, Greyhound Friends, Inc.), automobile racing (competition drivers license), and adventure travel.