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Microbiology reference laboratories

Our microbiology reference laboratories provide a tertiary referral service for notifiable bacterial pathogens at local, national and international levels.

The reference laboratories house collections of pathogens and viruses used to diagnose, detect, identify and characterise infectious bacterial agents and environmental hazards, which may threaten public health.

The collections provide critical epidemiological surveillance data of communicable diseases and drug resistance in human pathogens, which is critical for enabling preparedness for future threats caused by emerging pathogens and epidemic disease.

Our reference laboratories include Neisseria and enteric pathogens and notifiable pathogens (including acute respiratory infections).

We use the collections to:

  • diagnose, detect, identify and type infectious bacterial agents and environmental hazards of public health concern
  • enhance surveillance work of notifiable bacterial organisms
  • perform epidemiological analysis and provide advice to stakeholders
  • perform public health investigations
  • contribute to the development of state, national and international guidelines on control and containment strategies.

Reference laboratories

Our reference laboratories include:


We share our public health microbiology research in published papers, at conference presentations and workshops, and by facilitating laboratory exchange placements.

We maintain our collections by collating and compiling epidemiological information and culture collections, which enables us to research and develop new testing methodologies and activities that maximise efficient and effective responses to emerging issues and threats.

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Notifiable pathogens and conditions

Last updated: 14 February 2018