Siouxsie Wiles, PhD

scientist in New Zealand

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I am a microbiologist and bioluminescence enthusiast. As head of the Bioluminescent Superbugs Lab at the University of Auckland, I combine these two passions to try to understand how some deadly microbes cause disease and how we can stop them. In a nutshell, my team and I make nasty bacteria glow in the dark!

I also love demystifying science and busting the myth that scientists are stuffy and aloof. I'm a keen tweeter, blogger, podcaster and radio commentator and have collaborated with a number of artists to show how beautiful glowing bacteria can be. For the last few years, I've also worked with Australian graphic artist Luke Harris, and his team, to make short animations describing some of nature’s amazing glowing creatures and the many uses of bioluminescence in science.


PhD Microbiology, Napier University, Edinburgh, UK
BSc (First Class Hons) Medical Microbiology, University of Edinburgh


Finalist, Kiwibank New Zealander of the Year, 2018

Sir Peter Blake Trust Blake Leader Award, 2016

NZ Prime Minister’s Prize for Science Media Communication, 2013

Royal Society of New Zealand Callaghan Medal, 2013

NZ Association of Scientists Science Communicator Prize, 2012

NZ National Animal Ethics Advisory Committee 3Rs Prize, 2011

NZ Health Research Council Sir Charles Hercus Fellowship, 2009

UK National Centre for the Replacement, Refinement and Reduction of Animals in Research (NC3Rs) 3Rs Prize, 2005