Institute of Cellular Medicine

Staff Profile

Professor Muzlifah Haniffa

Wellcome Trust Senior Research Fellow in Clinical Science, Lister Institute Prize Fellow, Professor of Dermatology and Immunology



Muzlifah Haniffa is a dermatologist with a research interest in immunology.  Her research programme is focused on understanding the functional heterogeneity of human mononuclear phagocytes, a family of white blood cells comprising dendritic cells, monocytes and macrophages, which initiate and regulate immune responses.  She has used functional genomics and comparative biology to align the human and mouse mononuclear phagocyte networks.  Muzlifah's research goal is to understand how mononuclear phagocytes regulate tissue homeostasis, immunity upon vaccination and their role in disease pathogenesis. This knowledge is essential for the development of new strategies to manipulate host immune response to improve vaccination and immunotherapeutic strategies.

Muzlifah was a previous recipient of a Wellcome Trust Intermediate Clinical Fellowship (2010-2015) and an Action Medical Research Training Fellowship (2005-2008).  Her work has been recognised by a number of awards including the Lister Institute Research Prize (2016), the European Society for Dermatology Research LEO Pharma Research Foundation Silver Award (2013), the British Society for Investigative Dermatology Young Investigator Award (2012) and Sue McCarthy Prize (runner-up) for the UK Medical Research Society Young Investigator Award (2009).

Muzlifah is an adjunct investigator at Singapore Immunology Network and Institute of Medical Biology, A*STAR, Singapore.

She leads a Wellcome Trust funded public engagement programme called Inside Skin, an interdisciplinary dialogue between science and art relating to skin and the immune system in collaboration with the Newcastle Centre for the Literary Arts and Culture Lab.  A video tour of her exhibition is available through the following link:


1999                           BSc. (First Class Hons), MBBCh (Hons), University of Wales College of  Medicine 

2002                           MRCP, Royal College of Physicians London

2007                           Diploma in Epidemiology, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine

2009                           PhD, Newcastle University

2010                           Certificate of Completion of Training in Dermatology


Research Group members:

Research assistant: Emily Stephenson

PhD students: James Fletcher, David Dixon,

Post-doctoral research associate: Peter Vegh, Dorin-Mirel Popescu

Academic Clinical Lecturer: Gary Reynolds

Clinical research trainees: Katie Best, Beth Poyner

Alumni: Naomi McGovern, Merry Gunawan, Laura Jardine