Professor Deborah Watson-Jones BMBCh MRCP DTM&H MSc PhD

Professor (Clinical)


Debby Watson-Jones is a Clinical Epidemiologist who has lived and worked in Kenya, Nigeria, Senegal, India, Mongolia and Tanzania. She has worked for LSHTM since 1995 and is currently based in Tanzania and Ethiopia.




She is the co-organiser of Control of Reproductive Tract Infections Module (3192) and has taught on the HIV and STD component of MSc in Control of Infectious Diseases and on Foundations in Reproductive Health, Safe Motherhood and the AIDS study units and on HIV/STD Control in Conflicts for the Health in Complex Emergencies Course. She also teaches on the Vaccinology in Africa course in Entebbe.


Her main research interest is the development and evaluation of interventions to control Ebola, HPV, HIV and other sexually transmitted infections in sub-Saharan Africa. She is currently leading EBOVAC1, a multisite project that is implementing several clinical trials to evaluate the Ad26.ZEBOV MVA BN Filo prime boost vaccine to prevent Ebola infection, with trial sites in Sierra Leone, Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda. She is also leading the DoRIS trial to evaluate immunogenicity and safety of one dose of HPV vaccine in Tanzania.

Recently completed studies include a project to collate lessons learnt from HPV vaccine demonstration projects in low and middle income countries and studies on HPV epidemiology, other STIs and the vaginal microbiome around sexual debut in Tanzania. She has been involved in a trial of different contact tracing strategies for Ebola and a trial of combination HIV prevention, including immediate lifelong ART in HIV infected individuals, in Zambia and South Africa (the PopART HPTN-071 trial). Previous studies include a trial to compare different HPV vaccine delivery strategies in Tanzania; a phase IIIb immunogenicity and safety trial of the bivalent HPV vaccine in young African women; HPV vaccine acceptability in hard-to-reach populations in Kenya, PMTCT performance in East Africa, interventions against HSV-2 to prevent HIV infection, syphilis in pregnancy, hydatid disease in Kenya and Mongolia and HIV/STD control in large-scale goldmines and neighbouring communities in the Lake Victoria Goldfields. She was the LSHTM research team leader in Mwanza from 2003-2007.

She is an advisory committee member on one dose HPV vaccine trials and HPV therapeutic vaccines. She was a member of the UK DOH Expert Panel on the prime boost vaccine, the LSHTM Ebola task force, the GAVI Alliance Independent Review Committee, the WHO  Committee for the revision of guidelines for comprehensive cancer control (C4-GEP) and a temporary advisor for the WHO HPV Vaccine Advisory Committee.



Research areas

  • Adolescent health
  • Clinical trials
  • Randomised controlled trials
  • Reproductive health
  • Sexual health
  • Vaccines


  • Epidemiology
  • Medicine
  • Vaccinology

Disease and Health Conditions

  • Cancer
  • Cervical cancer
  • Emerging Infectious Disease
  • Herpesviruses
  • Human papillomavirus (HPV)
  • Sexually transmitted disease
  • Sexually transmitted infection
  • Syphilis
  • Zoonotic disease


  • Sub-Saharan Africa (developing only)


  • Kenya
  • Sierra Leone
  • South Africa
  • Tanzania
  • Uganda
  • Zambia

Other interests

  • Adolescence
  • Adolescents
  • Africa
  • Ebola
  • HIV
  • Human Papillomavirus
  • Member Of MARCH
  • Member of Vaccine Group
  • intervention studies
  • vaccine
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