Helena B. Nader is Professor and Head of the Institute of Pharmacology and Molecular Biology at the Federal University of São Paulo (Unifesp). She obtained her PhD at Unifesp and post-doctoral training as a Fogarty (NIH) fellow at the University of Southern California. Since 1985, she is a 1A (highest level) research fellow of the National Research Council for the Scientific and Technological Development (CNPq). Her research field is molecular and cell biology of glycoconjugates. She has received several national and international awards and honours.
She is president of the Brazilian Academy of Sciences (ABC), co-chair of the IANAS (Inter-American Network of Academies of Sciences) and Governing Board member of the International Science Council (ISC). She is member of the ABC, The World Academy of Sciences (TWAS), and the Latin America Academy of Sciencies (ACAL). Former president of the Brazilian Society of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (SBBq, 2007-2008), she is also honorary president, former vice-president (2007-2011) and former president (2011-2017) of the Brazilian Society for the Advancement of Sciences (SBPC).
At Unifesp, she was the first woman to become Pro-Rector of Undergraduate as well as Pro-Rector of Research and Graduate programmes. She has been a role model for many women in Brazilian universities, helping to promote the empowerment of women and breaking barriers in society. She is a member of several national councils related to science and education. Her contributions go beyond research, having contributed with initiatives aiming at diminishing the gap in scientific development between the different regions of Brazil, and improving nationwide levels of high school education.