Bruno Silvester Lopes
Thiomargarita magnifica is the largest bacterium ever discovered.
I am someone who studies different types of bacteria and how they become powerful and cause human infections. As a child I always had a dream of naming my own bacteria and I achieved it in 2019🙂 You can see the bacteria which I discovered on the link below
I am hardworking and dedicated to the science of preventing disease, prolonging life and promoting human health.
I live in the North East of England in Middlesbrough with my wife who is a dentist and my wee son who is 1.5 years of age. I love hill walking and partying with family and friends. We are a group of multi-cultural people who love to celebrate various Indian festivals such as Diwali, Holi, Dusherra, Eid and Christmas. I love Indian classical music and I also sing in the local church. I am a bass. I like painting and cooking. In my free time I play with my son, visit parks, wander around the town, go to the beach, speak with my friends and colleagues.
My pronouns are:
I am a scientist who studies germs which are so small that they can only be seen with a microscope. Occasionally, We need to take medicines if we fall sick and sometimes harmful bugs can make us very unwell.
I am interested in how and why some harmful they can’t be killed by taking medicines. My work tells doctors which medicines are effective and which are not. It also makes people aware of how medicines are misused and bacteria are becoming stronger and make us really sick. My work leads to invention of new drugs which are developed to kill bacteria and can make us live longer.
I work on antibiotic resistance in two bacteria that are listed as critical priority pathogens by the World Health Organisation. They are called Acinetobacter and Campylobacter. In the UK, Campylobacter (a spiral shaped bacterium) is the number 1 cause of a short painful illness that affects your stomach and intestines and can make you go to the toilet frequently.
You can get Campylobacter if you wash your raw chicken and don’t cook it properly. Acinetobacter on other hand is a is a bug that you can acquire in the hospital and it can cause serious complications and even death. Both bugs can be dangerous in individuals that don’t have a strong immune system to protect them such as the elderly, people with health conditions and young children.
My Typical Day:
I start work at around 8:30 AM and work mostly on Campylobacter which is a bug you get if you wash your chicken or don’t cook it properly hence it is called a foodborne pathogen. I sometimes work in the lab doing experiments and other time sit on a computer and look at the genetic makeup of the bacterium which gives me answers to questions such as: What kind of bug it is? what type of genes it contains to fight antibiotics? Are the genes different in Campylobacter which was grown from chicken, human, cattle, sheep, wild birds, pigs? How can we cure to deadly diseases and prevent illnesses? How can I use natural compounds to get rid of Campylobacter from poultry which is the main source of food related infections?
I have nice Indian meal in the afternoon when I am hungry and I go home at around 17:00 or 18:00 PM. I also have loads of meetings some days collaborating with world leading scientists. Occasionally when I have a lot of teaching, I work on weekends to prepare my teaching material. Last semester, I taught microbiology to around 500 students at the University.
What I'd do with the prize money:
I would use the money to visit local schools and design material to cater to the needs of students in resource limited settings. I am a STEM ambassador and also do volunteer work with pupils that come from underprivileged backgrounds. I also cater for students with wide range of abilities (dyslexia, dyspraxia, colour-blindness) and use different learning styles such as visual, auditory, reading, kinaesthetic (hands on training/experiments). I want to help children discover more about the microbial world and develop their interest in this field. It will also be used for organising microbiology events and for other out reach purposes.
My curriculum links
I went to St Anthony’s convent high school in India where I studied Hindi, Marathi, Maths, English, Science, History, Geography, Moral science, Drawing.
PGCert Academic Practice (University of Aberdeen) 2016.
Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA, Ref# PR107562) 2016.
PhD (Medical Microbiology) (University of Edinburgh, 03/11/08 – 22/06/12).
Funded by the University of Edinburgh Overseas Research Scholarship and College of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine Bursary (2008-2011).
MSc (Biochemistry, rank 4) (First class with distinction, University of Mumbai, (01/06/06-25/06/08).
BSc (Microbiology, Biochemistry and Environmental Science & Pollution) (First class, University of Mumbai, 2003-2006) Co-curricular Honours in Microbiology, (02/06/2003-01/03/2006).
A levels Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Maths: 72%.
GCSE (O levels): 74%.
- Volunteer (2008-2012)- ‘Homeless project’ run by Sisters of Mercy.
- Volunteer (2008-2012)- Tandem language exchange events run by EUSA at the University of Edinburgh, Festival of Spirituality and Peace for Edinburgh Fringe festival.
- Research scientist (2012–2019) in Medical Microbiology at the University of Aberdeen, Supervisors: Prof Ken Forbes, Prof Norval Strachan (Chief Scientific advisor, Food Standards Scotland)
- Wellcome Trust ambassador (2016-present) for a major public engagement programme on food and drink.
- Volunteer (2019- present): OLIO sustainability and food waste hero.
- Science Technology Engineering and Maths (STEM) ambassador (2012-present).
Lecturer in Microbiology (2022-present)
Teesside University, Middlesbrough
How would you describe yourself in 3 words?
Friendly, calm, positive.
What did you want to be after you left school?
Scientist (since I was 5 years of age)
Were you ever in trouble at school?
If you weren't doing this job, what would you choose instead?
I am a YouTuber and run Dr. Bruno Recipes
Who is your favourite singer or band?
What's your favourite food?
aubergines with crushed peanuts (it is a traditional Indian recipe)
If you had 3 wishes for yourself what would they be? - be honest!
I want to be invisible, I want to be rich and help the poor, I want to time travel
Tell us a joke.
Why did the banana go to the doctor? Because it wasn’t peeling well...hahahaha