Helena Seth-Smith

Curriculum Vitae

Helena Margaret Brabazon Seth-Smith
Contact details

Employment and Positions

Jan 18- Senior Scientist, University Hospital Basel, Clinical Microbiology and University of Basel, Department of Biomedicine, Applied Microbiology Research
Jun 16-Dec 17 Senior Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Basel, Department of Biomedicine, Applied Microbiology Research and University Hospital Basel, Clinical Microbiology
Apr 16- Scientific Consultant, Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, Pathogen Genomics
Feb 16- Senior Scientist, University of Zürich, Institute of Veterinary Pathology, project work
Apr 13-Dec 15 Marie Curie Fellow, Functional Genomics Center Zürich, University of Zürich
Apr 12-Feb 13 Research Fellow,
Hughes Hall, University of Cambridge
Jan 09-Mar 13 Staff Scientist, Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, Pathogen Genomics
Oct 02-Jan 09 Postdoctoral Research Associate, Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, Pathogen Sequencing Unit, comparative genomics group
Oct 98-Jun 08 Supervisor, University of Cambridge, Trinity Hall & Sidney Sussex, Biology of Cells, and Cell and Developmental Biology (previously Molecular Cell Biology)
Jun 97-Aug 97 Research Post, Imperial Cancer Research Fund, Laboratory of Cell Regulation
Jun 96-Sep 96 Research Post, University of Cambridge, Institute of Biotechnology


1998-2002 Ph. D. University of Cambridge, Institute of Biotechnology
"Microbial degradation of the explosive RDX (hexahydro-1,3,5-trinitro-1,3,5-triazine)" [Thesis pdf]
1995-1998 B.A. (M.A.) University of Cambridge, Trinity Hall
Natural Science Tripos specialising in Genetics (2.1)

Research Independence and Responsibilities

Marie Curie Fellowship: independent project on novel fish pathogens causing gill disease epitheliocystis

Acting group leader covering 9 month professorial absence (2014-2015)

Current and Recent Projects

Grants Awarded and Applied for

Egli, A., Seth-Smith, H.M.B.Swiss Federal Office for Public Health (BAG) 2016: "Evaluierung der 'whole genome sequencing' Methodik in der molekularen Epidemiologie am Beispiel von Campylobacter spp. in der Stadt Basel 2015-2016", CHF80,000.
Seth-Smith, H.M.B. Consolidator Grant Swiss National Science Foundation 2014: "EmBrAce: Emerging bacterial pathogens in farmed animals: Agents, Impact and Reservoirs", 60m, CHF 2,508,595. Designated quality level B, not awarded.
Seth-Smith, H.M.B. Genome sequence funding from Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute for Miseq analysis (Aug 2013).
Seth-Smith, H.M.B. Marie Curie Intra-European Fellowship (EU FP7). "ChlaFish: Novel Fish Pathogens of the Chlamydiae: Genomic, Proteomic and Metabolomic Investigations." Awarded November 2012, Score 91/100, 24m, €248,451.

Administrative, Editing and Organisational Roles

Teaching Roles


next generation sequencing; bacterial genomes; genomic epidemiology; comparative genomics; manual annotation; evolution; genetics; phylogenetics; genomes from complex clinical samples; molecular biology; cell culture; bacterial knockouts; mutant libraries; cloning; heterologous protein expression; immunomagnetic separation; whole genome amplification; high resolution and fluorescence microscopy; UNIX, PC and Mac literate; flow cytometry; HPLC, ion chromatography (Dionex), TLC and spectrophotometric assays
analytical; data integration and interpretation; experimental design; method development; troubleshooting and problem solving; project management; project leadership; ethical; rapid knowledge acquisition; critical literature evaluation; health and safety BSL-2; time management; good laboratory practice; writing of scientific papers, grants and articles for general public; scientific editing
interpersonal skills collaborating and negotiating with diverse individuals; mentoring and motivating students and colleagues; presenting seminars for varied audiences; tutoring university students; networking; teamwork; meeting coordination
enthusiastic; motivated; dedicated; open; curious; logical; analytical; systematic; conscientious; efficient; professional; critical; practical; reliable; organised; thorough; friendly; collaborative; interdisciplinary; confident; helpful; loyal; optimistic; creative; flexible; independent; self-motivated

Continuing professional development

Python for Life Scientists (SIB), Geneva (2018)
First Steps with R (SIB), Basel (2017)
PM Leadership course, University of Zürich (2015)
Project Management course, University of Zürich (2015)
ETH Zürich / University of Zürich Microscopy Winter School: High Resolution Light Microscopy (2014)
EMBO Practical Course: Intravital Microscopy, Flow Cytometry and Cell Sorting (2013)
EMBO Workshop: Integrating omic approaches to host-pathogen interactions (2013)
EMBO Laboratory Management Course (2012)
Risk Assessment training (2012)
Tomorrow's Giants, Royal Society and Nature conference (2010)
Global Innovations Lab workshop (2010)
Achieving as a Professional in Science Engineering & Technology Workshops (2009)
Project Management Skills (2008)
NESTA Crucible - encouraging young scientists in innovation (2007)
Presentation Skills (2005)
Supervisory Skills (2005)

Invited conference presentations and seminars

ESCCAR conference, Lausanne, Switzerland (2015)
Australian Chlamydia conference, University of the Sunshine Coast, Australia (2014)
Microbiology and Infection (DGHM-VAAM), Dresden, Germany (2014)
Hellenic Centre for Marine Research, Crete, Greece (2014)
Institute of Veterinary Pathology, University of Zürich, Switzerland (2013, 2014)
Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute, Basel, Switzerland (2012)
Biozentrum, University of Basel, Switzerland (2012)

Publications and Presentations


Scientific communication including:

Reverence for Life UK (previously Dr Schweitzer's Hospital Fund) charity trustee, promoting the philosophy of Reverence for Life (1997-)
RoSPA advanced driving test (silver)
Yoga, Fitness, Swimming, Skiing, Hiking, Running up to half marathons, Static trapeze
German (intermediate), French (basic)
DIY and mending things around the home
HTML and website design: Seth-Smith Family Website; Cheese making in the family
Photography, dSLR
Cookery, especially experimenting with new recipes

Last updated: May 2018
Helena Seth-Smith, Basel, Switzerland
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