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Building regional infectious disease resilience

The Infectious Disease Resilience mission will help improve the Indo-Pacific’s preparation for and response to biothreats.

We will do this by supporting regional partners in strengthening laboratory capabilities and data analytics. We will also introduce fit for purpose science and technology solutions to provide laboratories with the tools and knowledge they need.

By enhancing infectious disease resilience in the Indo-Pacific we’ll help safeguard human health, promote economic growth, and minimise the risk of infectious diseases reaching Australia.


Important statistics

75% of emerging human diseases 

are zoonotic (animal to human)

300% increase in outbreaks

seen in zoonotic diseases over the past 30 years

~2.5 billion cases of illness and 2.7 million deaths

from zoonoses every year

540,000 - 850,000 unknown viruses

existing in nature are estimated to be zoonotic 


Zoonotic and vector-borne infectious diseases, as well as antimicrobial resistance, are a major threat to the Indo-Pacific region’s health and economic security.

The Indo-Pacific is a hotspot for zoonotic diseases, with more than a million people in it dying as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic alone. We’ve found an average of two new viruses are appearing in humans each year and that the Coronaviridae, Flaviviridae, Togaviridae, Orthomyxoviridae and Paramyxoviridae virus families are likely to be the source of the next pandemic.

Vector-borne diseases also continue to be a major threat to the Indo-Pacific. More than 400 million people in the region are vulnerable to malaria, a situation made worse by high levels of insecticide resistant mosquito species.

At the same time more than 1.27 million people a year die world-wide from drug-resistant infections.

This risk from infectious diseases and antimicrobial resistance will continue to grow – fuelled by human impacts and environmental pressures such as climate change, deforestation, and urbanisation.

Many Indo-Pacific countries lack the laboratory and detection systems needed to control transmission of biothreats. The developing Infectious Disease Resilience mission aims to help them build this capacity.


The Infectious Disease Resilience mission aims to fast-track the development of regional solutions.

Rather than individual projects focusing on a single country, the work will be multidisciplinary and scaled to achieve impact across the region.

We will partner with other organisations to deliver impact across the infectious diseases ecosystem in areas where CSIRO has globally recognised expertise:

  • Laboratory strengthening
  • Laboratory networking
  • Pre-clinical testing of vaccines/therapeutics
  • Diagnostics
  • Health information systems
  • Disease surveillance
  • Vector surveillance and control
  • Antimicrobial resistance (AMR)
  • Small scale manufacturing of medical products


Improve the health and economic security of the Indo-Pacific region, with equitable and inclusive outcomes

The Infectious Disease Resilience mission aims to help:

  • Promote economic growth in the Indo-Pacific, providing further trade and investment opportunities for Australia
  • Improve Australia’s awareness of infectious diseases in the Indo-Pacific, and minimise the risk they enter Australia
  • Build trust in Australia as a health security partner.

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