Rachel Pullan

MSci MSc PhD

Associate Professor
of Epidemiology

Room 401

Keppel Street
United Kingdom

+44 (0)20 7927 2702

I am an infectious disease epidemiologist, interested in the epidemiology and control of neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) in sub-Saharan Africa, with a focus on spatial epidemiology and operational research. I am particularly interested in the design, implementation and evaluation of interventions for prevention, control and potential elimination of helminthic NTDs.

I have a first degree in biochemistry from Imperial College London, and an MSc (Demography and Health) and PhD (Epidemiology) from LSHTM. I have been based at LSHTM since 2005, and lead a group of epidemiologists specialising in GIS, spatial analysis, and field-based research including large cluster randomised trials of public health interventions. We work closely with national control programmes and international agencies, and place a strong emphasis on developing an evidence base that can be used to inform policy and practice.

I am the Deputy Director of the London Centre for NTD Research (, Associate Editor with PLOS NTDs ( and a member of the STH Advisory Committee.


Department of Disease Control


Centre for Evaluation


I am a Research Degree Coordinator for the Disease Control Department. I am also the course organiser for the study unit Spatial Epidemiology in Public Health and contribute to a number of other teaching modules including Parasitology and Entomology and Applying Public Health Principles. In addition, my research group has developed a short training course in GIS tailored for NTD programme managers (

I currently supervise three PhD students: Rebecca Flueckiger (spatial epidemiology of trachoma), Simon Kogozi (spatial analysis of routine malaria data); Stefan Witek-McManus (community health workers and the delivery fo NTD programmes).


Our research focuses on two areas:

Spatial epidemiology of NTDs: I lead the Global Atlas of Helminth Infection (, an open-access global information platform on the distribution of soil-transmitted helminths (STH), schistosomes and lymphatic filariasis (LF). We are increasingly interested in the spatio-temporal distribution of NTDs, the degree to which changes can be related to the scaling up of interventions or other factors, and a spatially-considered approach to M&E and surveillance for ongoing programmes.

Evaluating intervention strategies: We are currently implementing the TUMIKIA Project in Kenya, which aims to determine whether community-based deworming is more effective at controlling and eliminating soil-transmitted helminths than school-based deworming. This is a community-based randomised controlled trial intended to strengthen the evidence base surrounding STH control and elimination. In addition to addressing the impact of treatment strategies on transmission of STH, we are investigating the cost and cost-effectiveness, feasibility, acceptability and equity of alternative strategies and delivery mechanisms.

Our research is supported by grants from the Wellcome Trust, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Joint Global Health Trials Scheme (DFID, MRC and Wellcome Trust).

Research Area
Complex interventions
Disease control
Geographic Information Systems (GIS)
Global Health
Impact evaluation
Implementation research
GIS/Spatial analysis
Operational research
Disease and Health Conditions
Buruli Ulcer
Infectious disease
Lymphatic filariasis
Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs)
Tropical diseases
Sub-Saharan Africa (developing only)

Selected Publications

Challenges and opportunities for control and elimination of soil-transmitted helminth infection beyond 2020.
Freeman MC; Akogun O; Belizario V; Brooker SJ; Gyorkos TW; Imtiaz R; Krolewiecki A; Lee S; Matendechero SH; Pullan RL
PLoS neglected tropical diseases
Malaria Burden through Routine Reporting: Relationship between Incidence and Test Positivity Rates.
Kigozi SP; Kigozi RN; Sserwanga A; Nankabirwa JI; Staedke SG; Kamya MR; Pullan RL
The American journal of tropical medicine and hygiene
Understanding the spatial distribution of trichiasis and its association with trachomatous inflammation-follicular.
Flueckiger RM; Giorgi E; Cano J; Abdala M; Amiel ON; Baayenda G; Bakhtiari A; Batcho W; Bennawi KH; Dejene M
BMC infectious diseases
Geographical distribution and prevalence of podoconiosis in Rwanda: a cross-sectional country-wide survey
Deribe K; Mbituyumuremyi A; Cano J; Bosco MJ; Giorgi E; Ruberanziza E; Bayisenge U; Leonard U; Bikorimana JP; Rucogoza A
Mapping the global distribution of Buruli ulcer: a systematic review with evidence consensus
Simpson H; Deribe K; Njih Tabah E; Peters A; Maman I; Frimpong M; Ampadu E; Phillips R; Saunderson P; Pullan RL
Lancet Global Health
Effects, equity, and cost of school-based and community-wide treatment strategies for soil-transmitted helminths in Kenya: a cluster-randomised controlled trial
Pullan R; Halliday K; Oswald W; Mcharo C; Beaumont E; Kepha S; Witek-McManus S; Gichuki P; Allen E; Drake T
See more Publications