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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 800 active research projects and 1400 staff and students that include laboratory scientists, clinicians, epidemiologists, bioinformaticians, statisticians, public health professionals and social scientists.

Our research is structured into Research Themes, 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 a 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.

April 2024

Tonsils at Telethon: developing a standardised collection of tonsil photographs for group A streptococcal (GAS) research

Group A streptococcus (GAS) infections, such as pharyngitis and impetigo, can lead to rheumatic fever and rheumatic heart disease (RHD). Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander populations experience high rates of RHD and GAS skin infection, yet rates of GAS pharyngitis are unclear. 

Published research Academic Biostatistics Infectious Diseases Infectious Disease Implementation Research Subsite: Wesfarmers Centre of Vaccines and Infectious Diseases Invasive Streptococcus A Disease Healthy Skin and ARF Prevention Strep A & ARF Therapeutics
May 2024

A Pilot Group Program for Parents of Trans Young People at a Specialized Pediatric Gender Diversity Service

Parental support is strongly associated with protective factors across a range of child health outcomes for trans young people. Commonly, parents report barriers to supporting their child such as lack of understanding and difficulty in accessing information and support regarding gender diversity.

Published research Gender Diversity Youth Mental Health Youth mental health Mental health
May 2024

‘Black Out Rage Gallon’ (aka borg): An investigation of a risky drinking trend on TikTok

A 'Black Out Rage Gallon' (borg) is a customised, individual alcoholic beverage popularised on TikTok, whereby half the water in a gallon jug is replaced with alcohol (usually spirits), flavourings, electrolytes and caffeine. We investigated the characteristics and portrayal of the emerging alcohol trend associated with the hashtag descriptor #borg on TikTok.

Published research Human Development and Community Wellbeing Youth Mental Health Child Physical Activity, Health and Development Technology & Kids
June 2024

Specific IgA, but Not IgG, in Human Milk from COVID-19-Infected Mothers Neutralizes SARS-CoV-2

This study highlights the importance of human milk in providing anti-severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 immunity to newborns. The highest protective activity of human milk against COVID-19 was found in colostrum from infected mothers.

Published research Breastfeeding Infectious Diseases COVID-19 Immunology and Breast Feeding Maternal health

Associate Professor Glenn Pearson

Director of First Nations Strategy and Leadership

BA (Education) PhD Candidate

Professor Ben Jackson

Research Theme Head, Brain and Behaviour

BSc (Hons) PhD

Liz Davis

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


Professor Jane Pillow

Research Theme Head, Early Environment; Team Lead, Chronobiology

BMedSci (Dist) MBBS, PhD (Dist) FRACP