Professor David Conway BSc PhD

Head of PMBD and Professor of Biology


David runs a research group in London conducting population genetic, experimental and epidemiological studies of malaria parasites. He works with colleagues in several countries in West Africa, as well as Kenya and Malaysia. He was based in The Gambia for several years where he also studied other aspects of malaria, and has previously worked on other infectious diseases including trachoma and strongyloidiasis. He has published over 170 research articles (Google Scholar Citations).





David co-ordinates an MSc module on 'Pathogen Genomics' in the Summer Term. He previously developed an MSc module entitled 'Genetics of Pathogens and Vectors' and ran this for 9 years, and has also taught on the Study Units 'Genetic Epidemiology', and 'Immunology of Parasitic Infections', and on the Distance Learning module on Malaria. He has taught externally at UCL and on two BBSRC residential Summer Schools. He has supervised MSc research projects at LSHTM, and supervised BSc projects of students from Imperial College, UCL, and Guy's Hospital. He currently supervises 3 PhD students, and has previously supervised 8 PhDs at LSHTM and co-supervised 3 registered elsewhere. 



David leads a research group with a focus on malaria, and is particularly interested in: (i) the effects of natural selection on parasite antigens that are the targets of protective immune responses, (ii) naturally acquired immune responses and their relevance to protection, (iii) the effects of different epidemiological situations on parasite population genetic structures, (iv) erythrocyte invasion phenotypes of merozoites.

His research is currently funded by an ERC Advanced Award for 'Parasite population genomics and functinal studies towards development of a blood stage malaria vaccine', an MRC Grant on ‘Malaria parasite population structure and adaptation on the edge of endemic distribution in Africa’, and a Royal Society-Leverhulme Trust award with Dr Gordon Awandare on 'Targets and patterns of erythrocyte invasion inhibitory antibody responses in malaria'. He has previously held 14 other research grants at LSHTM (8 from the Wellcome Trust, 3 from the MRC, 2 from the EU, and 1 from the Royal Society-Leverhulme Trust).

Between 2005 and 2010 he was Head of the Malaria Research Programme at the MRC Laboratories in The Gambia, where he led work supported by grants from the MRC and several other funders.

Research areas

  • Parasites
  • Protozoa
  • Vaccines


  • Epidemiology
  • Genetics
  • Genomics
  • Immunology
  • Molecular epidemiology
  • Parasitology

Disease and Health Conditions

  • Infectious disease
  • Malaria


  • Gambia, The
  • Ghana
  • Guinea
  • Kenya
  • Malaysia
  • Mali
  • Mauritania
  • Senegal
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