Jonathan Carapetis




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Professor Jonathan Carapetis

The Telethon Kids Institute is headed by leading paediatrician and infectious diseases specialist Professor Jonathan Carapetis.

Professor Carapetis took up the position of Institute Director in July 2012 after six years leading the Menzies School of Health Research in Darwin.

He is recognised as a leading mind in the Australian health field, with particular expertise in Indigenous child health.

Amongst his many accolades, in 2013, Professor Carapetis was awarded Honorary Doctor of Science, Charles Darwin University, Northern Territory. He was also named as Northern Territory Australian of the Year in 2008.

He has been named as one of Australia's top 100 brains in Cosmos magazine, selected in the top ten in Medicine and Health in the Bulletin Magazine's "Smart 100" list, and attended the Prime Minister's 20:20 summit in Canberra in 2008.

Professor Carapetis has made an international contribution and commitment to the reduction of rheumatic heart disease.  While rare in most developed countries, Australia has one of the highest rates of the disease in the world due to its prevalence within Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, particularly in Northern Australia.

Previous positions include terms as Director of the Centre for International Child Health at the University of Melbourne, Theme Director at the Murdoch Children's Research Institute in Melbourne and Clinical Fellow in Paediatric Infectious Diseases at the Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, Canada.

Professor Carapetis holds a clinical position with the Princess Margaret Hospital for Children and is a Winthrop Professor at the University of Western Australia.

Professor Carapetis is married with two children.

  • PhD ‐ University of Sydney
  • FAFPHM ‐ Australian Faculty of Public Health Medicine
  • FRACP (Infectious Diseases) ‐ Royal Australian College of Physicians
  • FRACP (Paediatrics) ‐ Royal Australian College of Physicians
  • MBBS ‐ University of Melbourne
  • BMedSc ‐ University of Melbourne
Areas of expertise and research interests
  • Rheumatic fever and rheumatic heart disease
  • Other group A streptococcal diseases
  • Vaccine preventable disease
  • Indigenous child health
  • Child development and education
  • Youth health and education
  • Skin sores and scabies


Current projects
  • Genetic associations of rheumatic heart disease in Aboriginal Australians and Torres Strait Island communities
  • Improving delivery of secondary prophylaxis for rheumatic heart disease
  • Development of a novel formulation of bezathine penicillin G for the prevention of rheumatic heart disease
  • CANVAS (Coalition to Advance Vaccines Against Group A Streptococcus)
  • RhFFUS (Rheumatic fever follow up study)
  • Rheumatic heart disease in pregnancy
  • The global burden of rheumatic heart disease
  • RhEACH Rheumatic heart disease. Evidence. Advocacy. Communication. Hope
  • A pilot trial of nurse-led echocardiography for rheumatic heart disease in Fiji
  • Healthy skin, health lives - tackling scabies and impetigo in Aboriginal communties
  • Maralu strategy to make fetal alcohol syndrome disorder (FASD) history in Fitzroy Valley
  • Trans-tasman initiative to develop a rheumatic fever vaccine
  • Alternative treatments for skin sores: a randomized controlled trial of trimethoprimsulfamethoxazole regimens compared to benzathine penicillin
  • Pacific rheumatic heart disease control programme
  • Improving delivery of secondary prophylaxis for rheumatic heart disease
  • Evaluation of different infant vaccinations scheduled incorporating pneumococcal vaccination
  • A trial of mass‐drug administration of ivermectin to control scabies and strongyloidiasis in a remote Aboriginal community
  • One disease at a time - saying goodbye to scabies in the East Arnhem region
  • Immunology of acute rheumatic fever
  • RHD Australia data collection system
Find out more


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