Australian Institute of Tropical Health and Medicine - Townsville (AITHM)

James Cook University

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Microscopic view of a tropical disease

The AITHM is an important health and tropical medicine research institute located across two of JCU’s campuses, in the wet and dry Tropics of northern Australia. AITHM's objective is to lead improvements in tropical health and medicine through a significant portfolio of research addressing the critical health challenges in the Tropics. AITHM is a leading tropical health and medical research institute, dedicated to solving problems of major importance to tropical Australia, South-East Asia, the Pacific and the Tropics worldwide, leading to improvements in health outcomes and health service delivery, and contributing to growing prosperity in the region.


Key science sectors

Strengths and capabilities

  • Tropical health and medicine
  • Chronic disease research
  • Re-emerging infectious disease
  • Vector biology
  • Molecular development of therapeutics
  • vaccine development
  • Genetic and epigenetic aspects of disease
  • Translational research
  • Public health systems research
  • health economics
  • Biosecurity and tropical infectious diseases Bioinformatics

Facilities and major equipment

  • Physical Containment Class 2 (PC2) laboratory
  • Physical Containment Class 3 (PC3) laboratory
  • Translational research facility
  • Clinical consulting rooms
  • Telehealth
  • Biobank

Number of research staff

200-300 research staff


James Cook Drive, Building 48, Townsville, 4810

Lead researchers

  • Professor Louis Schofield—Internationally renowned malaria researcher - leading clinical trials for malaria vaccines
  • Professor Emma McBryde—World leading infectious disease specialist and mathematical modeller
  • Professor Alex Loukas—Internationally significant parasitologist, speacialising in secretomes of parasitic helminths development of vaccines

Achievements of the centre

  • Professor Tom Burkot was elected to Expert Review Group for the World Health Organisation regarding the Global Technical Strategy, and the Malaria Control and Elimination Operation Manual
  • Professor Sabesan led development of an innovative remote chemotherapy supervision model known as the Queensland Remote Chemotherapy Supervision model (QReCS)

Other centre in Queensland

Organisation type

  • University Research Centre

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