Professor Peter Smith
CBE BSc DSc HonMFPH FMedSci
of Tropical Epidemiology
Peter Smith is Professor of Tropical Epidemiology. He joined LSHTM in 1979 to head the MRC Tropical Epidemiology Unit (now MRC International Statistics & Epidemiology Group) and headed the Department (now Faculty) of Epidemiology and Population Sciences from 1990-96. He headed the Department (now Faculty) of Infectious and Tropical Diseases from its formation in 1997 until 2002. He graduated in mathematics from City University, London and joined the Medical Research Council's Statistical Research Unit in 1965. Since then he has worked on various aspects of epidemiological and statistical research in: MRC Clinical and Population Cytogenetics Research Unit, Edinburgh (1967-69); Makerere University Medical School, Uganda (1970-71); International Agency for Research on Cancer, Lyon, France and Uganda (1971-72); Imperial Cancer Research Fund Cancer Epidemiology Unit, Oxford (1972-79); Harvard School of Public Health, Boston (1987); and the Tropical Diseases Research Programme of WHO, Geneva (1987). He served on, then chaired, the UK Spongiform Encephalopathy Advisory Committee, which advised the government on BSE and vCJD from 1996 to 2002, and was a Governor of the Wellcome Trust from 2005 to 2014. He currently serves on, or chairs, a number of international scientific advisory committees, including EDCTP and CEPI and several for the World Health Organisation.
Research interests include large-scale intervention studies against tropical diseases, including vaccine trials, most recently against malaria, dengue and Ebola Virus disease. He was involved in research on the link between Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE) and Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease in humans. He also serves on a number of international committees relating to intervention studies against some of the major tropical diseases, including malaria, dengue and Covid-19.