Health, Medical and Biosecurity

Infrastructure and expertise for the rapid development of medical countermeasure technologies and products to provide effective protection of Defence personnel from a range of chemical, biological and radiological threats, pandemics and emerging infectious diseases.

UWA competitive advantage

  • Extensive experience handling and manipulating security sensitive biological agents (SSBAs), in vitro testing of novel drugs, virulence screening of biological threat agents at Physical Containment (PC) level 2 laboratories, and experimental and in vivo testing at PC3 laboratories.
  • Antimicrobial resistance including developing medical countermeasures to deadly human fungal bio-warfare and bio-terrorism agents, and antibacterial targets and therapies to specific bacteria.
  • Development of superior sensing technologies for detection of, and methodologies to rapidly identify, decontaminate and eliminate SSBAs.
  • Identify, decontaminate and eliminate critical bio-warfare and bio-terrorism threats to food security and food exports.
  • Identification of naturally self-decontaminating materials, relevant to the sterilisation of military equipment (vehicles, armament, clothing etc.) following overseas deployments.
  • Human Performance Optimisation through injury management, spinal cord repair, soft tissue regeneration, enhanced cooling from hyperthermia, mechanisms of and delay of muscle fatigue.
  • Chemical measurement of stress, assessment tools for screening and early detection of mental health problems and remote health provision using wearables.

Key contacts

Dr Mitali Sarkar-Tyson
Senior Research Fellow, School of Biomedical Sciences, Division of Infection and Immunity, Marshall Centre for Infectious Diseases

Phone: +61 8 6457 2662

Associate Professor Keith Stubbs
School of Molecular Sciences

Phone: +61 8 6488 2725

Outcomes and impact

  • UWA researchers are focused on identifying new antibiotics that are capable of treating a broad range of bio-warfare agents with a reduced chance of developing antimicrobial resistance.
  • UWA has funding partnerships with the UK Ministry of Defence, the Singapore Ministry of Defence, and the Defence Science Technology Group.

Capabilities and facilities

Facilities include:

  • Physical Containment (PC) level 3 laboratories
  • Biosafety level 2 and level 3 experimental and animal laboratories
  • Chemical and biochemical laboratories (Bayliss Building)