Our research

We see a future where everyone enjoys longer, healthier lives.
It's within reach
Research centres
Collaborative research centres
Research services
Garvan's technologies and equipment
Search for labs and groups
A comprehensive list of all our research laboratories & staff

Our research themes

Katherine Samaras - Theme Leader
Katherine Samaras - Theme Leader

Healthy ageing research

Age-related degeneration of our nerves, brain and cells that control metabolism — leading to Parkinson’s disease, dementia, hearing loss, eye diseases and diabetes — remains one of the least well understood areas of medicine. These diseases appear to be influenced partly by our genes and proteins, and partly by inflammation and immunity reactions.

Garvan’s researchers are bringing together these different disciplines to identify explanations, new diagnostic tests and treatments for Parkinson’s disease, diabetes, autism, anorexia and deafness.

Healthy ageing labs >

Paul Timpson - Theme Leader
Paul Timpson - Theme Leader

Cancer research

1 in 2 people will be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetime. Cancer is a genetic disease: its root cause is changes in the DNA sequence and the way that DNA is packaged in our cells. 

Our cancer researchers study rare and less common cancers, and cancers that run in families like the many forms of sarcoma, cancers that spread very quickly like pancreatic cancer, and common cancers that still resist treatment or come back including breast, lung, bowel and prostate cancer.

We work at the intersection of immunity and cancer disciplines. We have numerous clinical trials in progress to ensure our discoveries can directly benefit patients.

Cancer labs >

Susan Clark - Theme Leader
Susan Clark - Theme Leader

Genomics and epigenetics research

Garvan researchers are at the forefront of genomics, epigenetics (the additional layer of instructions that activate or deactivate genes) and cellular genomics research. This is one of the fastest moving and most important areas of medical research today.

Our researchers study how DNA and its copying into RNA varies from person to person and cell to cell, revealing the detailed answers to health and disease – how to diagnose, treat, predict and prevent disease.

Genomics and epigenetics labs >

Stuart Tangye - Theme Leader
Stuart Tangye - Theme Leader

Immunity and inflammation research

The immune system plays a critical role in our health. 1 in 8 people will develop one or more of the 100 autoimmune diseases, such as type 1 diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis or celiac disease. These diseases result partly from genes we inherit, and partly from changes in the DNA. 

Garvan’s researchers are at the forefront of research into the genomic basis for immune diseases, and the use of that information to match patients to targeted treatments that work exceptionally well for them. 

Immunity and inflammation labs >

Diseases we research

By collaborating across different fields of research, we see a future where countless devastating diseases are no longer a death sentence. Through our never-ending pursuit of new discoveries, we see a future where medicine is revolutionised by understanding your DNA and treatment is personalised to you.