Cecelia C. Yates, PhD

Dr. Cecelia Yates is an Associate Professor in the Department of Health Promotion & Development, School of Nursing at the University of Pittsburgh, with secondary appointments in the Department of Pathology, School of Medicine, the Department of Bioengineering, School of Engineering, and the McGowan Institute of Regenerative Medicine. Additionally, she is co-director of the University of Pittsburgh’s Clinical and Translational Science Institute’s TL1 Predoctoral Fellowship sponsored by NIH Clinical and Translational Science Awards (CTSA) Program. Dr. Yates attended Tuskegee University, Tuskegee, Alabama, where she earned her BS in Biology/Chemistry, and her PhD in Integrative Biomedical Science and Pathology in conjunction with the University of Pittsburgh. Upon completing her education, she participated in a Fellowship in Pathology at Pitt’s School of Medicine.

Dr. Yates has over 15 years of experience in fibroblast, chemokine, and extracellular matrix biology and the pathogenesis of organ fibrosis. She has a continuous track record of innovative research and therapeutic development in the field of tissue repair. Her research focuses are on understanding immune cell and stromal cell mediated interactions that contribute to the pathogenesis of fibrotic diseases such as systemic sclerosis (Scleroderma) and IPF. Her research group combines both translational and clinical models to develop therapeutics including biometric peptides, cellular transplantation, and bioreactive scaffolds to promote tissue regeneration. Dr. Yates’ research has been supported externally by the National Institute of Nursing Research, National Institute of General Medical Sciences, National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases, and internally by the Chancellor’s Innovation Award, the Center for Medical Innovation, and the University of Pittsburgh Genomic Hub. Dr. Yates’ entrepreneurial activities include more than eight issued US patents, several international patents, and pending applications associated with her work. She is the co-founder and Chief Scientific Officer of Fibrokine Inc., a Pittsburgh-based start-up developing a broad spectrum of anti‐fibrotic chemokine peptides to treat organ fibrosis. She is also the co-founder and member of the Scientific Advisory Board of a Pittsburgh-based start-up, Ocugenix, focused on ocular therapeutic development. In addition, she is involved with several ongoing therapeutic commercialization ventures.

Dr. Yates serves on a number of editorial boards including The American Journal of Pathology and Current Pathobiology Reports. She serves on the Department of Defense and National Institutes of Health scientific review study sections. She is a member of American Society for Investigative Pathology, American Association of Immunologists, and the Wound Healing Society. She developed and directs the course “Foundations of Personalized Health: Translation from Basic Research to Clinical Practice” and teaches both undergraduate and graduate level courses including “Pathophysiology Across the Life Span” and “Anatomy and Physiology.” Dr. Yates mentors nursing, pathology, bioengineering, clinical and translational graduate and medical trainees at the University of Pittsburgh and nationally.

Dr. Yates’ research interests are:  pathogenesis of skin (Scleroderma), lung (IPF), cardiac (MI), and liver fibrosis; chronic and fibrotic wound healing; skin immunopathology and disease; chemokine and matrix signaling; gene expression profiling; prediction modeling; cellular transplantation; peptide and small molecule therapeutic development; and patient outcomes.

View a list of Dr. Yates’ publications here.