The University of Liverpool’s Professor Nigel Cunliffe attended an Investiture at Windsor Castle this week (11th October 2023) to collect his OBE for services to infectious disease and vaccine research.
The Princess Royal presented Professor Cunliffe with his OBE, which was awarded in the 2023 New Year Honours list.
Work led by Professor Cunliffe over the past 25 years in Malawi has played a key role in the introduction of life-saving vaccines against rotavirus, the most common cause of severe diarrhoea among infants and young children, across Africa. This included a pivotal first clinical trial of a human rotavirus vaccine that informed the World Health Organization’s global vaccine recommendation in 2009 and the subsequent introduction of rotavirus vaccine in Malawi and many other African countries.
Professor Cunliffe is currently Director of the National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR) Health Protection Research Unit in Gastrointestinal Infections, Director of the NIHR Global Health Research Group on Gastrointestinal Infections, and an NIHR Senior Investigator. In these roles he works with academic and public health colleagues to reduce the population burden of infectious intestinal disease in the UK and Africa.
Professor Cunliffe joined the University of Liverpool in 1996 as a Wellcome Research Training Fellow in Clinical Tropical Medicine, based at the Malawi-Liverpool-Wellcome Clinical Research-Programme in Blantyre, Malawi. He obtained his PhD at the University in 2001, was appointed Professor of Medical Microbiology in 2011 and works as an honorary consultant medical microbiologist at Alder Hey Children’s NHS Foundation Trust.
Professor Cunliffe said: “I am deeply honoured by this award, which reflects the unwavering support that I have received from my family, friends, colleagues and research team over many years. Diarrhoeal diseases remain a leading cause of global illness and death, and I am humbled that our multidisciplinary research programme, which strives to reduce suffering especially among disadvantaged populations, has been recognised through this honour. I had a wonderful day with my family at Windsor Castle, and was thrilled to receive my OBE from The Princess Royal.”