Dr Siouxsie Wiles is an award-winning scientist who has made a career of manipulating microbes. She heads up the Bioluminescent Superbugs Lab at the University of Auckland, where she and her team make bacteria glow in the dark to understand how infectious microbes make us sick and to find new antibiotics. Siouxsie is also passionate about demystifying science and has won numerous prizes for her efforts, including the Prime Minister’s Science Media Communication Prize in 2013.
In 2017 she published her first book, Antibiotic Resistance: The End of Modern Medicine and in 2019 she was appointed a member of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to microbiology and science communication. During Covid-19, Siouxsie joined forces with Spinoff cartoonist Toby Morris to make the science of the pandemic clear and understandable. The pair released their work under a Creative Commons licence, meaning their graphics have been seen by millions and even used by governments and organisations as part of their official pandemic communications.