Professor Sir Brian Greenwood

Professor of Clinical Tropical Medicine, Faculty of Infectious and Tropical Diseases, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine

After qualifying in medicine at Cambridge University, UK Brian Greenwood spent 15 years  in Nigeria, first at University College Hospital, Ibadan and then at Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria where he helped to start a new medical school. In 1980, he moved to The Gambia where he spent the next 15 years as director of the UK’s Medical Research Council Laboratories, focusing his research on the prevention of the major infectious diseases prevalent in West African children, including malaria, pneumonia and meningitis. This research included early trials of insecticide treated bednets and trials of Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib), pneumococcal, and meningococcal conjugate vaccines whose findings contributed to the integration of these interventions into the routine health programmes of many lower income countries. 

In 1996, he moved to the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine where he has maintained his research on the prevention of malaria, meningococcal and pneumococcal infections in Africa, including trials that led to the development of Seasonal Malaria Chemoprevention and of the malaria vaccine RTS,S/AS01E, including a trial in Burkina Faso and Mali which has shown the value  of combining these two interventions.  Since 2014, he has been supporting on-going trials of two Ebola virus vaccines in Sierra Leone.  

His research has always included a strong research capacity development component. From 2000 – 2008, he coordinated the Gates Malaria Partnership, a programme of malaria research and capacity development in several African countries and, from 2008 – 2017, he coordinated its successor programme, the Malaria Capacity Development Consortium (MCDC) which supported many African PhD students, postdoctoral fellows and their host institutions. He has also supported strongly the Royal Society’s African research capacity development initiatives including the Royal Society Leverhulme programme, the Royal Society/DFID research capacity and the FLAIR postgraduate programme for African scientists.

Professor Greenwood was RSTMH President from 2005 to 2007. He was awarded the Chalmers Medal in 1977, the Mackay Medal in 1991 and the Sir Patrick Manson Medal in 2001, the Society's highest honour.