Professor Deborah Watson-Jones



Mwanza Intervention Trials Unit
National Institute for Medical Research
P.O. Box 11936 Mwanza

+255 754 056066 / +44 207927 2958

+255 28 2500019

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.


Faculty of Infectious and Tropical Diseases
Department of Clinical Research


Maternal, Adolescent, Reproductive & Child Health (MARCH)
Vaccine Centre


She is the co-organiser of Control of Reproductive Tract Infections Module (3192). She has also taught on the Vaccinology in Africa course.


Her main research interest is the development and evaluation of interventions to control human papillomavirus (HPV), Ebola, 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 heterologous prime boost vaccine to prevent Ebola infection, with trial sites in Sierra Leone. She is also leading the DoRIS trial to evaluate immunogenicity and safety of one dose of HPV vaccine in Tanzania. She is a member of the Single-Dose HPV Vaccine Evaluation Consortium, funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and convened by PATH.

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. 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 and a member of the WHO Working Group for the Preferred Product Characteristics for HSV 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 Area
Clinical trials
Sexual health
Adolescent health
Randomised controlled trials
Reproductive health
Disease and Health Conditions
Sexually transmitted disease
Cervical cancer
Emerging Infectious Disease
Human papillomavirus (HPV)
Sexually transmitted infection
Zoonotic disease
Sierra Leone
South Africa
Sub-Saharan Africa (developing only)

Selected Publications

"We are the heroes because we are ready to die for this country": Participants' decision-making and grounded ethics in an Ebola vaccine clinical trial.
Tengbeh, A.F. ; Enria, L. ; Smout, E. ; Mooney, T. ; Callaghan, M. ; Ishola, D. ; Leigh, B. ; Watson-Jones, D. ; Greenwood, B. ; Larson, H. ; Lees, S. ;
Soc Sci Med
Status of HPV vaccine introduction and barriers to country uptake.
Gallagher, K.E. ; LaMontagne, D.S. ; Watson-Jones, D. ;
Lessons learnt from human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination in 45 low- and middle-income countries.
Gallagher, K.E. ; Howard, N. ; Kabakama, S. ; Mounier-Jack, S. ; Griffiths, U.K. ; Feletto, M. ; Burchett, H.E.D. ; LaMontagne, D.S. ; Watson-Jones, D. ;
PLoS One
Rapid acquisition of HPV around the time of sexual debut in adolescent girls in Tanzania.
Houlihan, C.F. ; Baisley, K. ; Bravo, I.G. ; Kapiga, S. ; de Sanjosé, S. ; Changalucha, J. ; Ross, D.A. ; Hayes, R.J. ; Watson-Jones, D. ;
Int J Epidemiol
The association between cervical human papillomavirus infection and subsequent HIV acquisition in Tanzanian and Ugandan women: a nested case-control study.
Gallagher, K.E.; Baisley, K.; Grosskurth, H.; Vallely, A.; Kapiga, S.; Vandepitte, J.; Kamali, A.; De Sanjosé, S.; Changalucha, J.; Hayes, R.; Watson-Jones, D.;
J Infect Dis
Impact of malaria and helminth infections on immunogenicity of the human papillomavirus-16/18 AS04-adjuvanted vaccine in Tanzania.
Brown, J. ; Baisley, K. ; Kavishe, B. ; Changalucha, J. ; Andreasen, A. ; Mayaud, P. ; Gumodoka, B. ; Kapiga, S. ; Hayes, R. ; Watson-Jones, D. ;
Safety and Immunogenicity of Human Papillomavirus-16/18 AS04-Adjuvanted Vaccine: A Randomized Trial in 10-25-Year-Old HIV-Seronegative African Girls and Young Women.
Sow, P.S.; Watson-Jones, D.; Kiviat, N.; Changalucha, J.; Mbaye, K.D.; Brown, J.; Bousso, K.; Kavishe, B.; Andreasen, A.; Toure, M.; Kapiga, S.; Mayaud, P.; Hayes, R.; Lebacq, M.; Herazeh, M.; Thomas, F.; Descamps, D.;
J Infect Dis
HPV vaccination in Tanzanian schoolgirls: cluster-randomised trial comparing two vaccine delivery strategies.
Watson-Jones, D.; Baisley, K.; Ponsiano, R.; Lemme, F.; Remes, P.; Ross, D.; Kapiga, S.; Mayaud, P.; de Sanjosé, S.; Wight, D.; Changalucha, J.; Hayes, R.;
J Infect Dis
See all Professor Deborah Watson-Jones's Publications