A genome is defined as the complete genetic (DNA or RNA) content of a biological organism. The field of genomics uses cutting edge sequencing technologies and bioinformatics analyses to determine the genome sequences of organisms of interest.
This knowledge provides fundamental insights into many aspects of an organism’s biology. The Doherty Institute is actively engaged in the field of genomics at both a national level and internationally through both its primary research activities and public health laboratory-led initiatives.
Genomics is being applied to many aspects of microbial, immunological and infectious diseases primary research at the Doherty Institute. This includes the study of antibiotic resistance, microbial pathogenesis and HIV evolution, T-cell receptors and the KIR locus, the role of epigenetics in T-cell developmental biology and the human genetic susceptibility to tuberculosis and typhoid fever. Genomics is also used for viral and tuberculosis diagnostic purposes, and a new genomics centre - Doherty Applied Microbial Genomics – is facilitating the direct application of genomics within the area of public health and clinical microbiology.
The genomics expertise available within the Doherty Institute is being used to support and enhance ongoing public health activities such as antibiotic resistance tracking, disease surveillance and outbreak response, to provide training to researchers, clinicians and public health workers and is driving the establishment of new and innovative research collaborations, which has the potential to greatly benefit the health of the Australian public.
The Doherty Institute has a significant capacity for genomics including direct access to Illumina short read and Pacific Biosciences SMRT long read sequencing hardware, advanced robotics and substantial in-house bioinformatics capabilities.