Australian Institute of Tropical Health and Medicine

Better health for people in the tropics world-wide


To become a world leader in tropical health and medical research, biotechnology and research training

The Australian Institute of Tropical Health and Medicine (AITHM) is about to be launched as the organisational structure for health and medical research at James Cook University (JCU). The AITHM, through an integrated and multidisciplinary group of research clusters and distinguished researchers, will drive a research agenda targeted towards improving health in the tropics both within Australia and world-wide.

As the new incarnation of the Australian Institute of Tropical Medicine (AITM), which was established in 1913 with Dr Anton Breinl as its inaugural Director, the AITHM will build on a long history of commitment to health in the tropics to inform research and development relevant to the tropics today. JCU is has already established itself as a leader in the health sciences, and recent developments further underpin JCU’s capacity in this area:

  • Establishment of the JCU School of Medicine;
  • Re-location of The Townsville Hospital (the major hospital in Queensland outside of Brisbane) to a site adjacent to the University;
  • Development of the Comparative Genomics Centre;
  • Establishment of the WHO Collaborating Centre for lymphatic filariasis;
  • Establishment of the WHO Collaborating Centre for Nursing and Midwifery Education and Research Capacity Building;
  • Funding of the North Queensland Centre for Cancer Research by the Queensland Cancer Fund;
  • Transfer of the Anton Breinl Centre to the Douglas campus;
  • Assembly of the Infectious Diseases Research Consortium;
  • Establishment of the Queensland Tropical Health Alliance (QTHA); and
  • Successes in NHMRC funding of JCU-based tropical medicine projects.

The AITHM will build on existing capacity to become a global leader in health and medical research relevant to the tropical world. Stay tuned for further information about the AITHM as it undergoes establishment.