The Univeristy of Melbourne The Royal Melbourne Hopspital

A joint venture between The University of Melbourne and The Royal Melbourne Hospital

Our Work


Types of work

  • Diagnostics

    Diagnostics is a core element of Victoria’s public health and biomedical response to COVID-19 and the Doherty Institute provides assistance on numerous fronts. Our large public health laboratories complete routine testing on swab samples for traces of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. We also sequence the genomic structure of positive samples to understand the emergence of variants and epidemiological linkages between cases. We were the first laboratory to establish a COVID-19 PCR test in Australia and diagnose the first patient. Our research scientists are heavily involved in developing novel diagnostic tools including saliva samples, serology, 3D printed swabs and LAMP assay. Finally, we have a key leadership role in coordinating public health laboratories and advise State and Federal Government on best practice.

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  • Clinical and Public Health

    The Doherty Institute houses a range of clinical and public health activities in both research and service. The Victorian Infectious Diseases Service (VIDS) has had an instrumental role in managing the clinical response at the Royal Melbourne Hospital and building significant research links for accessing clinical samples and building national networks. There are a number of clinical trials planned or underway by Doherty Institute researchers and our team of epidemiologists are assisting government by modelling COVID-19 transmission risk and response.

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  • Antivirals and Virology

    Virology is the study of the SARS-CoV-2’s characteristics and behaviour and is key for informing our understanding of the COVID-19 pandemic and potential biomedical products. Antivirals drugs that are being actively explored at the Doherty Institute would constitute an innovative intervention for the treatment of COVID-19 and could complement vaccines currently being rolled out.

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  • Vaccines and Antibodies

    Active and passive vaccines that prevent disease and increased pathogenesis are a critical means to curb the spread and impact of COVID-19. At the Doherty Institute we have multiple separate but complementary approaches that provide an innovative approach through either monoclonal antibodies or vaccine constructs that mimic part of whole of the virus. These are currently at various stages of development.

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  • Regional Activities

    The Doherty Institute actively collaborates with and supports Australia’s regional partners in the fight against COVID-19. With a heavy focus on the Pacific Islands, various sections of the Doherty Institute provide technical advice, run capacity building programs and run statistical models to assist with pandemic planning and response.

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  • Modelling

    We have put together this information hub to provide more insight into what modelling is, introduce our team of modellers and provide explanations around the reports we have produced for National Cabinet.

    Here you will be able to find everything from the reports we have prepared for National Cabinet, to explainer videos, podcasts and articles.

    Find out more › about Modelling