Rick Lieber

LieberFellow Since: 2012

Current Affiliation: University of California San Diego

Rick Lieber earned his Ph.D. in Biophysics from U.C. Davis in 1982 developing a theory of light diffraction that was applied to mechanical studies of single muscle cells.  He joined the faculty of U.C. San Diego in 1985 where he has spent his entire academic career and is now Professor and Vice-Chair of the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery.

Dr. Lieber’s work is characterized by its interdisciplinary nature—an approach that is relevant to those who study biomechanics and Orthopaedic Surgery.  He has published almost 200 articles in journals ranging from the very basic such as The Biophysical Journal and The Journal of Cell Biology to those more applied such as The Journal of Hand Surgery and Clinical Orthopaedics and Related Research.  More recently, he has implemented molecular biology tools to understand gene expression patterns in muscles subjected to high stress and in performing mechanistic studies of muscles in which genes are introduced to muscles in an attempt to change their mechanical function.

In recognition of the clinical impact of his basic science studies, Dr. Lieber has been honored by the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (Kappa Delta Award), the American Bone and Joint Surgeons (Nicolas Andry Award) the American College of Sports Medicine (Fellow), and the Council for the International Exchange of Scholars (Fulbright Fellowship) and the American Society for Biomechanics (Borelli Award). His research laboratory is supported primarily by grants from the Department of Veterans Affairs and National Institutes of Health.  Dr. Lieber is currently the director of the National Skeletal Muscle Research Center and the San Diego Skeletal Muscle Research Center, both based at U.C. San Diego.