Imperial College London

Dr Sophie Helaine

Faculty of MedicineDepartment of Infectious Disease

Honorary Senior Lecturer



+44 (0)20 7594 3976s.helaine




2.20Flowers buildingSouth Kensington Campus





Bacterial pathogens cause many diseases in humans and are frequently well controlled by treatment with antibiotics. However, antibiotics are increasingly becoming inefficient. In addition to the well-documented cases of antibiotic resistance, persistence, characterised by relapsing infections following antibiotic treatment, is a major problem. We investigate Salmonella persisters during infection. 

After completing my Ph.D. at Universite Paris 5- Necker, Paris, France, in 2006 with Dr Vladimir Pelicic, I joined the CMBI in the Department of Medicine at Imperial College London as a Research Associate in the laboratory of Prof David Holden in 2007. I have been awarded a Junior Research Fellowship by Imperial College London in 2012 and started my own research group as a Senior Research Fellow to study the formation and biology of Salmonella persisters during infection of the host in 2013. I became a senior lecturer of the MRC Centre for Molecular Bacteriology of Infection at Imperial College London and a Lister Research Prize fellow since 2017. I moved my lab to Harvard Medical School in the Department of Microbiology in summer 2019.



Moldoveanu AL, Rycroft JA, Helaine S, 2021, Impact of bacterial persisters on their host, Current Opinion in Microbiology, Vol:59, ISSN:1369-5274, Pages:65-71

Panagi I, Jennings E, Zeng J, et al., 2020, Salmonella effector SteE converts the mammalian serine/threonine kinase GSK3 into a tyrosine kinase to direct macrophage polarization., Cell Host and Microbe, Vol:27, ISSN:1931-3128, Pages:41-53.e6

Pham THM, Brewer SM, Thurston T, et al., 2020, Salmonella-driven polarization of granuloma macrophages antagonizes TNF-mediated pathogen restriction during persistent infection, Cell Host and Microbe, Vol:27, ISSN:1931-3128, Pages:54-67.E5

Ronneau S, Helaine S, 2019, Clarifying the Link between Toxin-Antitoxin Modules and Bacterial Persistence, Journal of Molecular Biology, Vol:431, ISSN:0022-2836, Pages:3462-3471

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