Virological testing

Our laboratory provides state-wide specialist diagnostic services and surveillance for viruses and mosquito- and tick-borne pathogens of medical importance.

We investigate outbreaks of disease caused by infection with viruses such as measles, norovirus, gastroenteritis, dengue and Zika, which are of public health significance to Queensland. We perform surveillance of viruses and mosquitoes for local, state and federal authorities who can undertake targeted public health responses.

We have the capacity to respond to any public health crisis involving emerging or re-emerging viruses and rickettsiae, whether they be endemic or exotic to Queensland.

Our teams:

  • investigate virus outbreaks of public health significance such as those caused by noroviruses
  • detect, conduct surveillance and report on medically important arbovirus such as dengue, West Nile, yellow fever, Zika and chikungunya viruses
  • perform influenza virus-typing and culture
  • conduct research on viral diseases of public health importance
  • perform genotyping to identify and track virus outbreaks
  • investigate mosquitoes and other arthropods to determine their capacity to become infected with, and transmit viruses
  • identify medically important mosquito species using morphological and molecular methods.

Facilities

We have high level containment laboratories certified by the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources and Office of the Gene Technology Regulator. This enables us to work with, and research, viruses that are exotic to Australia or that cannot be handled using lower levels of biological containment.

Research

We conduct research into zoonoses, emerging viruses and arboviruses, including studies into the potential for local and exotic vector mosquitoes to transmit arboviruses.

On site we have diagnostic and research teams collaborating on the causes of outbreaks. We regularly publish novel findings of interest to public health as well as diagnostic methods and techniques.

Infectious disease reporting

Many virus infections are notifiable conditions under the Public Health Regulation 2005. The Public Health Virology laboratory identifies and analyses these viruses for Queensland public health units. If you are concerned that you have been in contact someone who is infected with a notifiable condition, please consult your doctor.