Research Scientist at the Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL), current

> Guest Curator of Microbial Life, Harvard Museum of Natural History, 2018-2022

> Small Things Considered, Associate Blogger, 2018-2019

Department of Microbiology, Harvard Medical School, 2015-2019

Harvard Microbial Science Initiative, 2015-2020


> Harvard Medical School, Harvard University, Boston, MA

Postdoctoral Fellowship in Microbiology, Kolter Lab

> University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT

PhD, Genetics and Genomics, May 2015

BA, Biological Sciences, 2008

Minors: English, Molecular and Cell Biology

> University of Montana, Bozeman, MT

Center for Biofilm Engineering, Visiting Researcher, 2012


Life at the Edge of Sight: A Photographic Exploration of the Microbial World, Harvard University Press, 2017

Author profiles:Google ScholarAmazon Author Page /PubMed / ResearchGate / Frontiers

Research Articles and Book Chapters

> Chimileski S, Franklin MJ, Papke RT (2014) Biofilms formed by the archaeon Haloferax volcanii exhibit social motility and cellular differentiation, and facilitate horizontal gene transfer. BMC Biology 12:65

> Chimileski S, Dolas K, Naor A, Gophna U, Papke RT (2014) Extracellular DNA metabolism in Haloferax volcanii. Front. Microbiol. 5:57

> Zerulla K, Chimileski S, Näther D, Gophna U, Papke RT, Soppa J (2014) DNA as a phosphate storage polymer and the alternative advantages of polyploidy for growth or survival. PLoS ONE 9(4)

> Ouellette M, Jackson L, Chimileski S, Papke RT (2015) Genome-wide DNA methylation analysis of Haloferax volcanii H26 and identification of DNA methyltransferase related PD-(D/E)XK nuclease family protein HVO_A0006. Front. Microbiol. 6:251

> Chimileski S, Papke RT (2015) Getting a hold on archaeal type IV pili: an expanding repertoire of cellular appendages implicates complex regulation and diverse functions. Front. Microbiol. 6:362

> Papke RT, Chimileski S (2012) Gene transfer mechanisms, population genetics and the evolution of haloarchaea, in Advances in Understanding the Biology of Halophilic Microorganisms. Vreeland R (ed.) Springer

Science communication

> TED-ED animation - Microbial Jungles, 2016

Articles written for blogs and popular press

> Chimileski, S, Kolter R. "Microbes Gave us Life," STAT, December 2017

Articles published at

Mystery of the Spring-Smelling Microbes, May 2016

Glimpse of an Alien World, in Yellowstone National Park, July 2016

Secrets in the Sandstone of Capitol Reef National Park, July 2016

Hey Bear! Can I Sample Your Microbiota? Aug 2016

Age of the Microzoo, co-written with Julie Wolf, Aug 2016

No Democracy for Tardigrades, November 2016

The Natural History of Cheese Mites, Dec 2016

Microscopy Meets Photography, 200 Years Later, March 2017

Haunts of Antoni van Leeuwenhoek, April 2017

Ancient Imaginations of the Microbial World, May 2017

The Mysterious Landscape, July 2017

Microbial Reefs of New York, Sept 2017

Bacterial Dyes in Fashion, Nov 2017

Microbial Multitudes: A Tribute to Stephen Jay Gould's Essay on the Humongous Fungus, Dec 2017

Small Things Considered

Bringing the Microbial World into our Natural History Museums,  2015

> The Microbial Life Exhibition at the Harvard Museum of Natural History, August 2018

> How to Build a Giant Winogradsky column, August 2018

Nature blog articles [7]

    Top ten Naturejobs blog, November 2014

> Personal microbiology blog (legacy website): Animalcule


Invisible Life: Exploring the World through Microscopes

Program at the Harvard Museum of Natural History

> Content Creator, Cooking with Microbes

HarvardX course, 2017-2018

> Instructor, MSI Microscopy Workshop

Harvard University,  Microbial Sciences Initiative, 2016, 2017, 2018

> Fundamentals of Microbiology

Univ. Connecticut, 2011-2015

> Microbe Hunting: Crowdsourcing Antibiotic Discovery

Univ. Connecticut, Yale Small World Initiative, 2014

Media coverage

Link to list of articles written about my work or featuring my images.

Cover art & select image credits

> The Scientist, Image of the Day, Tardigrades!, 2/2018

> Book cover: Chemical Ecology of Insects, Jun Tabata (ed.), CRC Press, 2017

> Journal of BacteriologyFern leaf pressvol. 199, Issue 4, 2017

> Genome Biology and Evolution, Infected squash stem, vol. 9, Issue 6, 2017

> Journal of Bacteriology, Microbial mats at Octopus Spring, vol. 199, Issue 2, 2017

> The Scientist, Image of the Day, Biofilm Up Close, 12/2016

> Journal of Bacteriology, Slime mold eats bacteriaAug 2016, vol. 198, Issue 16

> Journal of Bacteriology, Haloarchaea in a salt crystalOct 2015, vol. 197, issue 20

> Science Magazine, AAAS, Photo competition winner, Dec 2014

> Journal of Bacteriology,  The "volcano" colonyDec 2014, vol. 196, issue 24

> Book Cover: Halophiles: Genetics and Genomes, Caister Academic Press, 2014

Awards & Fellowships

> 2019 FASEB BioArt Contest Winner

> 2017 FASEB BioArt Contest Winner

2016 Passion in Science Award, New England Biolabs

Arts and Creativity - See my talk at NEB: Microbes are Beautiful

> 2016 FASEB BioArt Contest Winner

2016 Nikon Small World Competition, 4th place (honorable mention)

A time-lapse video of cheese mites on a rind of cheddar

> Poster Prize, The New Microbiology, August 2016

"Outstanding contribution" at EMBO/FEBES course, Spetses, Greece

> Antonio & Marjorie Romano Fellowship in Microbiology

Univ. Connecticut, Department of Molecular and Cell Biology, 2014

Naturejobs writing competition Award

Journalist for the day at Naturejobs expo, Boston, MA, May 2014

> Poster Prize, Halophiles 2013 , June 2013

> Poster Prize, ASM Region I Conference, Oct 2013

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