Peter H. Byers, MD, Professor of Pathology and Professor of Medicine (Medical Genetics), is a graduate of Reed College, in Portland, and Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine. He completed two years of internal medical residency at UCSF, then was a Research Fellow at the National Institutes of Health where he studied the way that collagen molecules were made, and then came to the University of Washington as a Fellow in Medical Genetics and joined the faculty in 1977 and became Professor in 1986. He has continued to study the way molecules that are important parts of structures in the body, like bone, tendon, and blood vessel walls and to understand how changes in these proteins and the changes in the genes that provide the information to cells to make them determine the clinical presentations. His group has been one of the dominant international laboratories to study inherited forms of brittle bone disease and conditions that give rise to inherited aneurysm disorders. Studies include gene discovery, identification of mosaicism to account for recurrence of dominant condition in children of unaffected parents, the molecular mechanisms of disorders, and their natural history. These studies paved the way to understand how genetic testing can help to identify children with genetic disorders among those thought to have been abused. He created and runs a diagnostic laboratory that was among the first in the nation to bring diagnostic studies for these disorders to clinical practice and in 2014 was named as the inaugural Director of the new UW MedicineCenter for Precision Diagnostics. His role in understanding genetic disorders was recognized by Antoine Marfan Award by the Marfan Foundation and Colonel Sanders Lifetime Achievement Award by the March of Dimes.
Investigator Profile: Peter Byers