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At the Telethon Kids Institute our researchers are searching for answers to improve the health and wellbeing of children and families affected by some of  the most devastating, complex and common diseases and issues.  At any one time we have more than 200 active research projects and 700 staff and students that include laboratory scientists, clinicians, epidemiologists, bioinformaticians, statisticians, public health professionals and social scientists.

Our research is structured into Research Focus Areas, programs of work and teams.  We are committed to collaboration and work together with other research organisations, clinicians, practitioners, policy makers, consumers and the community to understand the complexity of factors that impact on a child's health and wellbeing and the translation of research findings into action. We actively reward research excellence and offer a range of schemes to support our researchers.

In August 2018, we moved to our new purpose-built facility located within Perth Children’s Hospital on the QEII Medical Centre campus - the largest centre of excellence in healthcare, research and education in the southern hemisphere. With a footprint across seven floors, our new home features more than 7000sqm of work space and 2000sqm of laboratories (including specialty suites, equipment rooms and freezer farms), as well as dedicated clinical suites and a cryogenics facility. Our co-location with the Perth Children’s Hospital will enhance our collaboration with clinicians, nursing staff and other allied health professionals, leading to better care, better treatments and better health and development outcomes for our children and young people.

We are an independent medical research institute based in Perth, Western Australia and affiliated with the State's major universities. Our research is  primarily funded through national and international competitive grants and generously supported by donors and governments.

Study subsites

Check out our study websites

October 2020

Djaalinj Waakinj (listening talking): Rationale, cultural governance, methods, population characteristics–an urban Aboriginal birth cohort study of otitis media

The majority of Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander (hereafter referred to as “Aboriginal”) people live in urban centres. Otitis media (OM) occurs at a younger age, prevalence is higher and hearing loss and other serious complications are more common in Aboriginal than non-Aboriginal children. Despite this, data on the burden of OM and hearing loss in urban Aboriginal children are limited.

Published research Ear Infections Aboriginal Health Ear Health Vaccine Trials Group Subsite: Wesfarmers Centre of Vaccines and Infectious Diseases
July 2020

Whole-cell pertussis vaccine in early infancy for the prevention of allergy

This is a protocol for a Cochrane Review (intervention). The objectives were to assess the efficacy and safety of whole‐cell pertussis (wP) vaccinations in comparison to acellular pertussis (aP) vaccinations in early infancy for the prevention of atopic diseases in children.

Asthma Published research Whooping Cough Infectious Diseases Human Immunology Ear Health Vaccine Trials Group Subsite: Wesfarmers Centre of Vaccines and Infectious Diseases
November 2020

An observational study of the reactogenicity and immunogenicity of 13-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccine in women of childbearing age in Papua New Guinea

Maternal immunization with pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV) may protect young infants in high-risk settings against the high risk of pneumococcal infections in early life. The aim of this study was to determine the safety and immunogenicity of 13-valent PCV (PCV13) in healthy women of childbearing age in PNG.

Published research Infectious Diseases Ear Health Vaccine Trials Group Subsite: Wesfarmers Centre of Vaccines and Infectious Diseases
July 2020

Pediatric Burn Survivors Have Long-Term Immune Dysfunction With Diminished Vaccine Response

Epidemiological studies have demonstrated that survivors of acute burn trauma are at long-term increased risk of developing a range of morbidities. The mechanisms underlying this increased risk remain unknown. This study aimed to determine whether burn injury leads to sustained immune dysfunction that may underpin long-term morbidity. Plasma and peripheral blood mononuclear cells were collected from 36 pediatric burn survivors >3 years after a non-severe burn injury (<10% total body surface area) and from age/sex-matched non-injured controls.

Published research Child Allergy & Immunology Vaccine Trials Group Subsite: Wesfarmers Centre of Vaccines and Infectious Diseases

Glenn Pearson

Director of Aboriginal Health

BA (Education) PhD Candidate

Stephen Zubrick

Honorary Emeritus Research Fellow


Liz Davis

Head, Chronic & Severe Diseases Research Focus Area; Clinical Lead, Diabetes and Obesity Research


Deborah Strickland

Research Focus Area Head, Early Environment