Dr Olubukola Idoko, a star in the team of aspiring African Vaccinologists’

Originally from Nigeria, trained paediatrician and  clinical trial coordinator, Dr Idoko has worked at MRC Unit The Gambia since June 2010 (following a 1-year stint between Jul 2007 and Jul 2008). During this time Olubukola has been involved in a number of important vaccine trials, including the studies for MenAfriVac, a very important vaccine that protects against the epidemic strains that sweep the countries of the meningitis belt. The vaccine was recently introduced into The Gambia in a mass vaccination campaign, and it is hoped will also soon be part of our national immunisation program.

Bukky Olubukola

Dr Olubukola Idoko, trained paediatrician and clinical trial coordinator at MRCG

Dr Idoko holds a medical degree from the University of Jos in Nigeria and a Master of Science in Public Health from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. She also possesses post-graduate clinical qualifications in Paediatrics which she received at the Jos University Teaching Hospital in Nigeria and is a Fellow of the West African College of Physicians in Paediatrics.

More recently, Dr Idoko coordinated the multi-dose vaccine trial for the new preparation of the 13-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccine  (PCV) 13 Prevenar vaccine. This randomised control trial recruited 500 infants in Fajikunda and compared the immunogenicity between the standard preparation, which is a single dose per vial with the multi-vial preparation of PCV13. The vaccines were found to be equivalent, and the new preparation was licensed by the European Medicines Agency (EMA) in April 2016 as a consequence of the trial she led which will make the PCV vaccines more affordable for Africa.

Dr Idoko led the field team with great enthusiasm and is a highly respected leader. She is keen to pursue further academic training in Vaccinology and has just been awarded a 1-year Wellcome Trust Fellowship via Imperial College and a place on the PhD program at the University of Munich.

According to Prof Beate Kampman, Dr Idoko is a prime example of how the hard work, perseverance and the required multi-tasking of a professional African woman can lead to being an inspiration for others at the MRCG and beyond.

Read more about the working life of Dr Idoko on our website on http://www.mrc.gm/working-life-olubukola-bukky-idoko/