Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation

Meet the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s
Helen Blackwell
Professor of Chemistry
College of Letters & Science


Research area Devising novel chemical tools to decode and interfere with bacterial communication pathways.

What excites you about your work? 

“The unknown! I became a professor to ask my own specific research questions and mentor students full-time–I love the unexpected result that takes us in new directions, and simply learning new things about our world.”

What do you hope to achieve? 

“I would love our findings to contribute to the understanding of how bacteria interact in their myriad natural environments and how we can harness these interactions to treat infectious disease. I hope to continue to work with students here at UW to discover chemical approaches to decipher these bacterial interactions.

Helen has developed exciting technologies in the areas of biofilms and quorum sensing that could be transformative to control infection-causing agents in the near future.

– Rafael Diaz, WARF, Licensing Manager

Want to learn more?

Rafael Diaz, [email protected], 608.960.9847