Dr Muhammed Afolabi MBBS, MPH, PhD, FWACP, FHEA, FFPH

Clinical Associate Professor

London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine
Keppel Street
United Kingdom

Muhammed Afolabi obtained a medical degree from the University of Ibadan and a Master’s degree in Public Health from Obafemi Awolowo University, both in Nigeria, West Africa. He also underwent specialist medical training leading to the award of a postgraduate fellowship of the West African College of Physicians in Family Medicine. He obtained a PhD from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) in 2015. He is also a Fellow of the Faculty of Public Health of the Royal Colleges of Physicians of the United Kingdom.

Muhammed joined LSHTM in 2016 to work on the School's Ebola vaccine project based in Kambia, northern Sierra Leone, where he led the preparations and conduct of the paediatric components of the trials; the findings of which contributed to the approval of the novel two-dose Ebola vaccine regimen (ZABDENO/MVABEA) by the European Medicines Agency and pre-qualification by the World Health Organization.

Muhammed’s research antecedents at the MRC Unit, The Gambia (MRCG) from 2009-2016 were in the evaluation of HIV and malaria vaccines in adult and paediatric populations. He led the collaborative trial involving MRCG and Université Cheikh Anta Diop (UCAD), Senegal to evaluate the safety and immunogenicity of malaria vaccines when co-administered with routine childhood immunisations in infants and neonates.

Muhammed has a track record of developing innovative solutions to address the unmet needs of the populations he works with. For example, to address the perennial challenges faced when communicating essential research information to low-literacy research participants, Muhammed developed and evaluated in a randomised controlled trial a simplified alternative method of delivering consent information using a locally designed multimedia tool which integrated video, animations and audio narrations in local languages. This study formed the basis of his highly regarded PhD, which he passed without requiring any corrections from the Examiners. The multimedia consent tool has changed the way informed consent procedure is conducted at MRCG and deservedly led to the award of prizes including MRCG Director's Award in 2013 and MRC Chief Executive Officer Award in 2014.

Muhammed is an experienced provider of technical support for clinical research, public health and epidemiological strategies to health organisations focused on operational and clinical research activities. He is experienced in managing multiple research projects including clinical operations, study timelines, resources, budget, risk mitigation and quality assurance plans. Muhammed serves on several committees including the WHO Strategic Advisory Group of Experts (SAGE) Working Group on COVID-19 vaccines and the Nuffield Council on Bioethics. He is also an Academic Editor of the PLOS Global Public Health.

Muhammed is currently working on a prestigious UKRI Future Leaders Fellowship, designed to tackle the difficult and novel challenges posed by co-endemicity of malaria and helminths in a high-risk paediatric population in West Africa by investigating the feasibility and effectiveness of integrating helminth control with seasonal malaria chemoprevention (SMC). This adventurous programme will hopefully lead to the implementation of an increasingly recognised WHO strategy of an integrated, non-disease-specific approach to the elimination of malaria and helminths, which could help to achieve SDG3 by 2030.


Department of Disease Control
Faculty of Infectious and Tropical Diseases


Malaria Centre


Muhammed has successfully completed the prescribed modules of Postgraduate Certificate in Learning and Teaching at the LSHTM and has become a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA). He has a wide range of teaching activities, which include:

Applying Public Health Principles in Developing Countries (MSc Public Health for Development)
Neglected Tropical Diseases Module 3465 (MSc Control of Infectious Diseases)
Control of Infectious Diseases - IDM 104 (MSc Control of Infectious Diseases)
Examiner for MSc, PG Diploma and PG Certificate in Infectious Diseases


Research interests include evaluation of novel vaccines to guide health policies in the control and eradication of infectious and emerging infectious diseases. Also interested in implementation research focusing on integrated management of infectious diseases and non-communicable diseases.
Research Area
Child health
Clinical trials
Complex interventions
Global Health
Public health
Systematic reviews
Implementation science
Mixed methods research
Randomised controlled trials
Disease and Health Conditions
Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs)
Tropical diseases
Infectious diseases
Emerging infectious diseases
Sierra Leone
Least developed countries: UN classification
Sub-Saharan Africa (all income levels)
Sub-Saharan Africa (developing only)

Selected Publications

COVID-19 vaccination implementation in 52 African countries: trajectory and implications for future pandemic preparedness.
WARIRI, O; AFOLABI, MO; Mukandavire, C; Saidu, Y; Balogun, OD; Ndiaye, S; Okpo, EA; Nomhwange, T; Uthman, OA; KAMPMANN, B;
BMJ Global Health
What factors are associated with paediatric admissions and their outcomes in a rural hospital in northern Sierra Leone? Insights from a pilot observational study
AFOLABI, MO; Ayieko, P; Njie, Y; Kowuor, D; Adetola, HH; Kamara, B; Jalloh, AB; Sesay, F; Swaray, E; Odeny, L; Pearce, RM; Samai, MH; Deen, GF; Koedoyoma, S; Sesay, IG; Ishola, D; Leigh, B; WATSON-JONES, D; GREENWOOD, B;
BMJ Public Health
Feasibility and safety of integrating mass drug administration for helminth control with seasonal malaria chemoprevention among Senegalese children: a randomized controlled, observer-blind trial.
AFOLABI, MO; Sow, D; Agbla, SC; Fall, EH B; Sall, FB; Seck, A; Manga, IA; Mbaye, IM; Loum, MA; Camara, B; Niang, D; Gueye, B; Sene, D; Kane, NM; Diop, B; Diouf, A; Gaye, NA; Diouf, MP; Lo, AC; GREENWOOD, B; Ndiaye, JL A;
Malaria journal
Safety and immunogenicity of the two-dose heterologous Ad26.ZEBOV and MVA-BN-Filo Ebola vaccine regimen in infants: a phase 2, randomised, double-blind, active-controlled trial in Guinea and Sierra Leone.
CHOI, EM-L; Lacarra, B; AFOLABI, MO; Ale, BM; Baiden, F; Bétard, C; Foster, J; Hamzé, B; Schwimmer, C; Manno, D; D'Ortenzio, E; Ishola, D; Keita, CM; Keshinro, B; Njie, Y; Van Dijck, W; Gaddah, A; Anumendem, D; Lowe, B; Vatrinet, R; Lawal, BJ; Otieno, GT; Samai, M; Deen, GF; Swaray, IB; ... EBOVAC-3/EBL2005 Study Team,
The Lancet Global health
Provider and User Acceptability of Integrated Treatment for the Control of Malaria and Helminths in Saraya, South-Eastern Senegal.
AFOLABI, MO; Diaw, A; Fall, EH B; Sall, FB; Diédhiou, A; Seck, A; Camara, B; Niang, D; Manga, IA; Mbaye, I; Sougou, NM; Sow, D; GREENWOOD, B; Ndiaye, JL A;
American journal of tropical medicine and hygiene
Addressing the challenges of implementing evidence-based prioritisation in global health.
Hayman, DT S; Barraclough, RK; Muglia, LJ; McGovern, V; AFOLABI, MO; N'Jai, AU; Ambe, JR; Atim, C; McClelland, A; Paterson, B; Ijaz, K; Lasley, J; Ahsan, Q; Garfield, R; Chittenden, K; Phelan, AL; Lopez Rivera, A;
BMJ global health
Prevalence of malaria-helminth co-infections among children living in a setting of high coverage of standard interventions for malaria and helminths: Two population-based studies in Senegal.
AFOLABI, MO; Sow, D; Mbaye, I; Diouf, MP; Loum, MA; Fall, EB; Seck, A; Manga, IA; Cissé, C; Camara, B; Diouf, A; Gaye, NA; Colle Lo, A; GREENWOOD, B; Ndiaye, JL A;
Frontiers in Public Health
Piloting a pragmatic clinical audit tool for quality improvement in rural paediatric care in northern Sierra Leone
AFOLABI, MO; Ayieko, P; Njie, Y; Kowuor, D; Adetola, HH; Kamara, B; Jalloh, AB; Swaray, E; Odeny, L; Pearce, RM; Samai, MH; Deen, GF; Koedoyoma, S; Sesay, IG; Ishola, D; Leigh, B; Watson-Jones, D; GREENWOOD, B;
Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory
Prevalence and distribution pattern of malaria and soil-transmitted helminth co-endemicity in sub-Saharan Africa, 2000-2018: A geospatial analysis.
AFOLABI, MO; Adebiyi, A; Cano, J; Sartorius, B; GREENWOOD, B; Johnson, O; WARIRI, O;
PLoS neglected tropical diseases
Caregivers' perception of risk for malaria, helminth infection and malaria-helminth co-infection among children living in urban and rural settings of Senegal: A qualitative study.
AFOLABI, MO; Sougou, NM; Diaw, A; Sow, D; Manga, IA; Mbaye, I; GREENWOOD, B; Ndiaye, JL A;
PLOS Global Public Health
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