Sara Vieira-Silva

Sara Vieira-Silva



Sara Vieira-Silva
University Medical Center, Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz
Institute of Medical Microbiology and Hygiene
Gebäude 905
Obere Zahlbacher Strasse 67
55101 Mainz

Short biography

Sara Vieira-Silva is an associate Professor and Group Leader at the IMMH, University Medical Center, JGU Mainz and Adjunct Director at the Institute of Molecular Biology, Mainz.

Initially trained in biology (University of Lisbon, Portugal) and computational biology (PDBC, IGC, Portugal), she conducted a PhD thesis in microbial evolutionary genomics (UPMC), supervised by Eduardo Rocha at Institut Pasteur, Paris, France.

As a postdoctoral scientist (VIB / KU Leuven), she specialized in studying microbial metabolism specific to the human gut environment and its clinical impact on the human host; embracing and developing state-of-the art computational approaches to study these microbial communities.


Sara's main research interests are the boundaries of the healthy human gut microbiota variation and the role of dysbiosis in disease, especially through the promotion of inflammation and production/degradation of bioactive compounds.

She combines her background in microbial comparative genomics and evolutionary ecology, with hypothesis-driven experimental design. In close collaboration with clinical experts, she approaches quantitatively the contribution of host-associated microbial communities to pathophysiology, notably in the clinical context of inflammatory, metabolic and neuropsychiatric disorders.

Selected publications

Vieira-Silva S*, Falony G*, Belda E*, (...), Clément K & Raes J. (2020) Statin therapy is associated with lower prevalence of gut microbiota dysbiosis. Nature 581:310-315. view

Vieira-Silva S*, Sabino J*, Valles-Colomer M*, Falony G*, (...), Vermeire S & Raes J. (2019) Quantitative microbiome profiling disentangles inflammation- and bile duct obstruction-associated microbiota alterations across IBD/PSC diagnoses. Nat. Microbiol. 4(11), 1826-1831. view

Valles-Colomer M, Falony G, (...), Vieira-Silva S* & Raes J*. (2019) The neuroactive potential of the human gut microbiota in quality of life and depression. Nat. Microbiol. 4, 623–632 view [*co-senior]

Vandeputte D*, Kathagen G*, D’hoe K*, Vieira-Silva S*, Valles-Colomer M, (...), Vermeire S, Falony G* & Raes J*. (2017) Quantitative microbiome profiling links gut community variation to microbial load. Nature 551, 507–511 view

Vieira-Silva S*, Falony G*, Darzi Y, et al. (2016) Species-function relationships shape ecological properties of the human gut microbiome. Nat. Microbiol. 1, 16088 view

Falony G*, Joossens M*, Vieira-Silva S*, Wang J*, Darzi Y, et al. (2016) Population-level analysis of gut microbiome variation. Science 352, 560–4 view

Full publication list: ORCID profile