Pneumococcal Research

Project Details

Pneumonia is the leading cause of death in children under five years of age. Pneumonia can be caused by a variety of micro-organisms including two common bacteria, Streptococcus pneumoniae and Haemophilus influenzae.

The Pneumococcal Research Group covers three distinct but closely-related sub-groups to develop, evaluate and enhance vaccination strategies worldwide:

  • Clinical and Epidemiology
  • Microbiology
  • Immunology

Our researchers are currently conducting a Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine (PCV) clinical trial in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam studying at reduced vaccine schedules. To accurately determine how much of the pneumonia burden is vaccine preventable researchers study vaccine impact. We are currently leading studies in Fiji, Laos, Mongolia, and Papua New Guinea to evaluate the impact of pneumococcal vaccine introduction on pneumonia and pneumococcal carriage.

In Fiji A/Prof Fiona Russell is leading a team evaluating the introduction of Pneumococcal, Rotavirus and Human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccines in Fiji. The group is also conducting research projects in Typhoid (Fiji) and HPV (Vietnam and Mongolia). A new area of interest is Respiratory Syncytial Virus with projects in Australia, Vietnam and Mongolia led by Dr Do and Prof Mulholland.

As part of the Melbourne Children’s campus partnership between the University of Melbourne, the Murdoch Children's Research Institute, and the Royal Children’s Hospital, the Pneumococcal Research team is embedded within the Murdoch Childrens Research Institute.

For more information on the Pneumococcal Research team, including contact details please click here.



  • Professor Kim Mulholland, Group Leader and Professorial Fellow
  • Helen Thomson, Research Manager
  • Lucy Crouch, Personal Assistant
  • Lois Tham, Project Coordinator

Clinical/ Epidemiology

  • Associate Professor Fiona Russell, Principal Research Fellow
  • Dr Grant Mackenzie, Senior Research Fellow (Based in the Gambia)
  • Dr Claire von Mollendorf, Senior Research Officer
  • Dr Nick Fancourt, Research Fellow
  • Dr Cattram Nguyen, Biostatistician
  • Stephen Lacey, Senior Research Officer
  • Eleanor Neal, Research Assistant and PhD student
  • Kathryn Bright, Clinical Coordinator (Based in Vietnam)
  • Emma Watts, Program Manager
  • Dr Alicia Quach, Senior Research Officer
  • Jana Lai, Research Officer – (based in Lao PDR)
  • Aiden Varan, Research Assistant
  • Beth Temple, Program Manager and PhD student
  • Dr Jocelyn Chan, PhD student


  • Dr Catherine Satzke, Senior Research Fellow
  • Dr Eileen Dunne, Senior Research Officer
  • Dr Sam Manna, Research Officer
  • Belinda Ortika, Research Assistant
  • Casey Pell, Research Assistant
  • Ahmed Alamrousi, Research Assistant
  • Monica Nation, Research Assistant
  • Jayne Manning, PhD Student
  • Laura Boelsen, PhD Student


  • Associate Professor Paul Licciardi, Research Fellow
  • Anne Balloch, Research Fellow
  • Dr Lien Anh ha Do, Research Officer – Virology
  • Dr Anushi Rajapaksa, Senior Research Officer
  • Rachel Marimla, Research Assistant
  • Jordan Nathanielsz, Research Assistant
  • Azadeh Nighaz, Research Assistant
  • Ryan Toh, PhD Student

For Honours, Masters and Scholarly Selective students see MCRI website.

Research Publications

For publications please click here.

Research Group

Centre for International Child Health

Faculty Research Themes

Infection and Immunology, Child Health

School Research Themes

Child Health in Medicine

Key Contact

For further information about this research, please contact the research group leader.

Department / Centre


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