Cecilia Lo, PhD
University of Pittsburgh

Cecilia Lo received her BS from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, PhD from the Rockefeller University, and received postdoctoral training at Harvard Medical School. , She then joined the faculty in the Department of Biology at the University of Pennsylvania where she rose through the ranks to become full Professor. In 2001, she relocated to NIH, becoming the Chief of the Laboratory of Developmental Biology and Director of the Genetics and Developmental Biology Center. In 2009, she relocated to become the founding Chair of the Department of Developmental Biology, where she now also holds the F Sargent Cheever Chair and is University Distinguished Professor of Developmental Biology. Dr. Lo’s research interest has largely focused on the genetic landscape of congenital heart disease (CHD). Her group conducted the first large scale mouse forward genetic screen to recover mutations causing CHD using noninvasive fetal echocardiography. These studies led to the unexpected discovery of a central role for cilia in CHD pathogenesis. Findings from analysis of mouse models and also clinical translational studies in patients have led to an appreciation of the role of motile cilia defects not only in the pathogenesis of CHD but also other human diseases. More recent work has led to the discovery of an important role for ependymal cilia defects in CDKL5 deficiency disorder and other seizure disorders.