Imperial College London

Dr Thushan de Silva

Faculty of MedicineDepartment of Infectious Disease

Senior Clinical Research Fellow





Wright Fleming WingSt Mary's Campus





I am a clinician scientist and Wellcome Trust Intermediate Clinical Fellow, currently based at the MRC Unit The Gambia as a PI in the Vaccines and Immunity Theme lead by Professor Beate Kampmann. My primary interest is the study of anti-viral immune responses in the context of both vaccination and natural infection. The focus of my current research is the detailed mucosal and systemic immunogenicity of live attenuated influenza vaccine (LAIV) in Gambian children using a systems vaccinology approach, including interactions with the host nasopharyngeal microbiome.

I completed my undergraduate medical training at the University of Bristol in 2000, followed by postgraduate clinical training in General Internal Medicine, Infectious Diseases and HIV in Oxford and London. I then moved to Sheffield for higher specialist training in Infectious Diseases & Microbiology. I was awarded a British Infection Society Research Fellowship (2007-8), followed by an MRC Clinical Research Training Fellowship (2008 – 11) to undertake my PhD studies under the supervision of Professor Sarah Rowland-Jones (Oxford) and Professor Robin Weiss (UCL) on the pathogenesis of HIV-2 infection and molecular epidemiology of HIV in The Gambia and Guinea-Bissau.

As an NIHR Academic Clinical Lecturer in Infectious Diseases & Microbiology at the University of Sheffield, I was awarded an Academy of Medical Sciences starter grant to undertake pilot studies of LAIV immunogenicity in adult volunteers. Data generated during these lead to the successful award of a Wellcome Trust Intermediate Clinical Fellowship in 2016 to be undertaken between Imperial College London, the MRC Unit The Gambia, Public Health England laboratories in Colindale and the University of Edinburgh.

I am an Honorary Consultant Physician in Infectious Diseases in the Dept. of Infection and Tropical Medicine, Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and Honorary Senior Clinical Lecturer at the University of Sheffield.

Selected Publications

Journal Articles

Lindsey BB, Jagne YJ, Armitage EP, et al., 2019, Effect of a Russian-backbone live-attenuated influenza vaccine with an updated pandemic H1N1 strain on shedding and immunogenicity among children in The Gambia: an open-label, observational, phase 4 study, Lancet Respiratory Medicine, Vol:7, ISSN:2213-2600, Pages:665-676

Lindsey BB, Armitage EP, Kampmann B, et al., 2019, The efficacy, effectiveness, and immunogenicity of influenza vaccines in Africa: a systematic review (vol 19, pg e110, 2019), Lancet Infectious Diseases, Vol:19, ISSN:1473-3099, Pages:E187-E187

McTavish SM, Snow SJ, Cook EC, et al., 2019, Genomic and Epidemiological Evidence of a Dominant Panton-Valentine Leucocidin-Positive Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus aureus Lineage in Sri Lanka and Presence Among Isolates From the United Kingdom and Australia, Frontiers in Cellular and Infection Microbiology, Vol:9, ISSN:2235-2988

Miller PDE, de Silva TI, Leonard H, et al., 2019, A comparison of viral microneutralization and haemagglutination inhibition assays as measures of seasonal inactivated influenza vaccine immunogenicity in the first year after reduced intensity conditioning, lymphocyte depleted allogeneic haematopoietic stem cell transplant, Vaccine, Vol:37, ISSN:0264-410X, Pages:452-457

James KL, de Silva TI, Brown K, et al., 2019, Low-bias RNA sequencing of the HIV-2 genome from blood plasma, Journal of Virology, Vol:93, ISSN:1098-5514

de Silva TI, Leligdowicz A, Carlson J, et al., 2018, HLA-associated polymorphisms in the HIV-2 capsid highlight key differences between HIV-1 and HIV-2 immune adaptation, AIDS, Vol:32, ISSN:0269-9370, Pages:709-714

Armitage E, Camara J, Bah S, et al., 2018, Acceptability of intranasal live attenuated influenza vaccine, influenza knowledge and vaccine intent in The Gambia, Vaccine, Vol:36, ISSN:0264-410X, Pages:1772-1780

de Silva TI, Gould V, Mohammed NI, et al., 2017, Comparison of mucosal lining fluid sampling methods and influenza-specific IgA detection assays for use in human studies of influenza immunity, Journal of Immunological Methods, Vol:449, ISSN:0022-1759, Pages:1-6

de Silva TI, Kampmann B, 2017, Value of immunogenicity studies of influenza vaccinein resource-limited settings, The Lancet Global Health, Vol:5, ISSN:2214-109X, Pages:E274-E274

Miller PDE, de Silva TI, Skinner R, et al., 2017, Routine vaccination practice after adult and paediatric allogeneic haematopoietic stem cell transplant: a survey of UK NHS programmes., Bone Marrow Transplantation, Vol:52, ISSN:1476-5365, Pages:775-777

Garcia-Knight MA, Slyker J, Payne BL, et al., 2016, Viral evolution and cytotoxic T cell restricted selection in acute infant HIV-1 infection, Scientific Reports, Vol:6, ISSN:2045-2322

Fryer HR, Van Tienen C, Van Der Loeff MS, et al., 2015, Predicting the extinction of HIV-2 in rural Guinea-Bissau, AIDS, Vol:29, ISSN:0269-9370, Pages:2479-2486

Jayasooriya S, de Silva TI, Njie-jobe J, et al., 2015, Early virological and immunological events in asymptomatic Epstein-Barr virus infection in African children, PLOS Pathogens, Vol:11, ISSN:1553-7366

de Silva TI, Peng Y, Leligdowicz A, et al., 2013, Correlates of T-cell-mediated viral control and phenotype of CD8(+) T cells in HIV-2, a naturally contained human retroviral infection, Blood, Vol:121, ISSN:0006-4971, Pages:4330-4339

de Silva TI, van Tienen C, Onyango C, et al., 2013, Population dynamics of HIV-2 in rural West Africa: comparison with HIV-1 and ongoing transmission at the heart of the epidemic, AIDS, Vol:27, ISSN:0269-9370, Pages:125-134

Daigneault M, De Silva TI, Bewley MA, et al., 2012, Monocytes Regulate the Mechanism of T-cell Death by Inducing Fas-Mediated Apoptosis during Bacterial Infection, Plos Pathogens, Vol:8, ISSN:1553-7374

van Tienen C, McConkey SJ, de Silva TI, et al., 2012, Maternal Proviral Load and Vertical Transmission of Human T Cell Lymphotropic Virus Type 1 in Guinea-Bissau, AIDS Research and Human Retroviruses, Vol:28, ISSN:0889-2229, Pages:584-590

van Tienen C, de Silva TI, Junior Alcantara LC, et al., 2012, Molecular Epidemiology of Endemic Human T-Lymphotropic Virus Type 1 in a Rural Community in Guinea-Bissau, PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases, Vol:6, ISSN:1935-2735

Sabbah S, Jagne YJ, Zuo J, et al., 2012, T-cell immunity to Kaposi sarcoma–associated herpesvirus: recognition of primary effusion lymphoma by LANA-specific CD4+ T cells, Blood, Vol:119, ISSN:0006-4971, Pages:2083-2092

de Silva TI, Aasa-Chapman M, Cotten M, et al., 2012, Potent Autologous and Heterologous Neutralizing Antibody Responses Occur in HIV-2 Infection across a Broad Range of Infection Outcomes, Journal of Virology, Vol:86, ISSN:0022-538X, Pages:930-946

Peterson I, Togun O, de Silva T, et al., 2011, Mortality and immunovirological outcomes on antiretroviral therapy in HIV-1 and HIV-2-infected individuals in the Gambia, AIDS, Vol:25, ISSN:0269-9370, Pages:2167-2175

de Silva TI, Turner R, Hue S, et al., 2010, HIV-1 subtype distribution in the Gambia and the significant presence of CRF49_cpx, a novel circulating recombinant form, Retrovirology, Vol:7, ISSN:1742-4690

de Silva TI, Cotten M, Rowland-Jones SL, 2008, HIV-2: the forgotten AIDS virus, Trends in Microbiology, Vol:16, ISSN:0966-842X, Pages:588-595

More Publications