Dengue is a mosquito-borne viral infection of humans that is highly prevalent in tropical Asia and Latin America.
The global burden
Approximately 100 million cases occur annually with 20,000 deaths. Australia is also affected by dengue; outbreaks regularly occur in North Queensland and hundreds of Australian international travellers return home with dengue every year.
The Doherty Institute's expertise
The Doherty Institute is home to expert clinical and laboratory services that diagnose and treat returning travellers who have acquired dengue. The Doherty Institute is also a base of world-leading dengue research. For example, researchers are unravelling how dengue viruses “renovate” the cells they replicate in. Solving this puzzle could identify new ways to develop drugs to treat dengue.
Doherty Institute researchers are also developing candidate dengue vaccines and field-testing Wolbachia as a novel dengue control agent. A great strength of the dengue research program at the Doherty Institute is its breadth; from basic science to randomised controlled trials of novel interventions to treat patients or prevent dengue transmission in communities. This “bench to field” dengue research is enabled by very close collaborative links, underpinned by exchange of people, with colleagues in the endemic countries of Vietnam, Indonesia and Thailand.