Woman syringing blood into a pipette

The UNSW RNA Institute is Australia’s leading RNA research institute.

Uniting researchers from the UNSW faculties of Science, Engineering and Medicine & Health, the scope of the institute’s research is ambitious and can be divided into four key challenge areas: 

  • Understanding sequence, structure and functional relationships of RNA.

  • Delivery vehicles, targeted delivery, RNA design and stability, transport into cells, the fate of nanoparticles in vivo, crossing the blood brain barrier.

  • The development of sensing technologies for commercialisation and advancement of scientific knowledge.

  • RNA synthetic chemistry for sustainable manufacturing, lab-on-a-chip platform for synthesis and scale-up, scale-up of novel delivery systems, and documented production for pre-clinical studies.

Health areas 

The UNSW RNA Institute will make critical contributions that advance human health, with a special emphasis on priority health areas: 

  • Infectious diseases – the treatments and vaccines for current and future infections (and their variants), including COVID-19 
  • Cancer – focus on hard-to-treat cancers in children 
  • Rare and genetic disorders – including neuromuscular diseases 
  • Neurodegenerative diseases – with emphasis on the fundamental role of non-coding RNA in diseases such as Alzheimer’s.