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Professor Kanta Subbarao

Professor Kanta Subbarao is a University of Melbourne Honorary (Professorial Fellow) with the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at the Doherty Institute. Professor Subbarao was Director of the WHO Collaborating Centre for Reference and Research on Influenza from 2016 to 2024. Prior to her arrival in Melbourne, she was Chief of the Emerging Respiratory Viruses Section of the Laboratory of Infectious Diseases, NIAID, National Institutes of Health (NIH) in the United States from 2002-2016 and chief of the Molecular Genetics Section of the Influenza Branch at the US CDC from 1997-2002.

Kanta is a virologist and a physician with specialty training in pediatrics and pediatric infectious diseases. She received her M.B.B.S. from Christian Medical College, Vellore in India, completed training in pediatrics and pediatric infectious diseases in the US and earned an M.P.H. in epidemiology from the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center and received postdoctoral training in the Laboratory of Infectious Diseases, NIAID, NIH.

Her research is focused on newly emerging viral diseases of global importance including pandemic influenza, severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) and includes study of virus biology and pathogenesis, immune responses to infection and vaccination, development and preclinical and clinical evaluation of vaccines.

  • Key Achievements
    • Kanta has authored more than 175 peer-reviewed publications in leading journals including Science, Nature, PNAS and the Journal of Virology, and 50 reviews or chapters, a majority on influenza and SARS. She is a Fellow of the American Academy of Microbiology and the Infectious Diseases Society of America and is a member of the American Society of Microbiology, Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society and American Society for Virology.  She serves on the Editorial Board of PLoS Pathogens and mBio.

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