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Our people-our expertise: Dr David Warrilow

Our people-our expertise

Dr David Warrilow

Qualifications | Research interests | Publications | Presentations | Awards | Grants and funding | Memberships

The main theme of my research has been the RNA viruses, particularly their replication and detection. More specifically, this has led me into virus genome sequencing using next generation technologies, and the analysis of the large amounts of generated data.

Genome sequencing applications include virus discovery and surveillance, particularly of the arboviruses; molecular epidemiology; understanding virulence and disease emergence; and the detection of unknown viral agents in clinical cases.

The development of new chemistries in sequencing will enable rapid and hypothesis-free testing a reality. To achieve this, sequencing at the single-molecule level is being explored.

The above approaches will enable rapid diagnosis of viral infections and outbreaks, even to previously unknown agents. It will also mean we are better prepared in terms of responding to emerging diseases.



  • PhD in Virology: University of Adelaide, South Australia.
  • Bachelor of Science (Hon I), University of Sydney, New South Wales.

Research interests and expertise

  • Virus genome sequencing
  • Arboviruses
  • Virus discovery
  • Diagnostics



Hauge WM, Callaway L, Chambers J, Chappell L, Coat S, de Haan-Jebink J, Dekker M, Dixon P, Dodd J, Fuller M, Gordijn S, Graham D, Heikinheimo O, Hennessy A, Kaaja R, Khong TY, Lampio L, Louise J, Makris A, Markus C, Marschall HU, Middleton P, Mol BW, Morris J, Newnham JP, Ovadia C, Peek M, Shand A, Stark M, Thornton J, Timonen S, Walker S, Warrilow D, Williamson C, (2021). A multi-centre, open label, randomised, parallel-group, superiority Trial to compare the efficacy of URsodeoxycholic acid with RIFampicin in the management of women with severe early onset Intrahepatic Cholestasis of pregnancy: the TURRIFIC randomised trial. BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth, 21(51). DOI: 10.1186/s12884-020-03481-y

Newton ND, Colmant AMG, O'Brien CA, Ledger E, Paramitha D, Bielefeldt-Ohmann H, Watterson D, McLean BJ, Hall-Mendelin Sonja, Warrilow D, van den Hurk AF, Liu W, Hoare C, Kizu JR, Gauci PJ, Haniotis J, Doggett SL, Shaban B, Johansen CA, Hall RA, Hobson-Peters J, (2020). Genetic, Morphological and Antigenic Relationships between Mesonivirus Isolates from Australian Mosquitoes and Evidence for Their Horizontal Transmission. Viruses, 12(10). DOI: 10.3390/v12101159

Huang B, Qiong Y, Hoffmann AA, Ritchie SA, van den Hurk AF, Warrilow D, (2020). Wolbachia Genome Stability and mtDNA Varients in Aedes aegypti Field Populations Eight Years after Release. iScience, 23(10). DOI: 10.1016/j.isci.2020.101572

O'Brien CA, Pegg CL, Nouwens AS, Bielefeldt-Ohmann H, Huang B, Warrilow D, Harrison JJ, Haniotis J, Schulz BL, Paramitha D, Colmant AMG, Newton ND, Doggett SL, Watterson D, Hobson-Peters J, Hall RA, (2020). A Unique Relative of Rotifer Birnavirus Isolated from Australian Mosquitoes. Viruses, 12(1056). DOI: 10.3390/v12091056

Ramirez AL, Colmant AMG, Warrilow D, Huang B, Pyke AT, McMahon JL, Meyer DB, Graham RMA, Jennison AV, Ritchie SA, van den Hurk AF, (2020). Metagenomic Analysis of the Virome of Mosquito Excreta. mSphere. DOI: 10.1128/mSphere.00587-20

Mastraccio KW, Huaman C, Warrilow D, Smith GA, Craig SB, Weird DL, Laing ED, Smith IL, Broder CC, Shaefer B, (2020) Establishment of a Longitudinal Pre-Clinical Model of Lyssavirus Infection. Journal of Virological Methods, 281. DOI: 10.1016/j.jviromet.2020.113882.

Nguyen W, Nakayama E, Yan K, Tang B, Le TT, Liu L, Cooper TH, Haybull JD, Faddy HM, Warrilow D, Allcock R, Hobson-Peters J, Hall RA, Rawle DJ, Lutzky VP, Young P, Oliveira NM, Hartel G, Howley PM, Prow NA, Suhrbier A, (2020) Arthritogenic Alphavirus Vaccines: Serogrouping Versus Cross-Protection in Mouse Models. Vaccines, 8(2):209. DOI: 10.3390/vaccines8020209 

Huang B, Montgomery BL, Adamczyk R, Ehlers G, van den Hurk AF, Warrilow D, (2020) A LAMP-based colorimetric assay to expedite field surveillance of the invasive mosquito species Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus. PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases, 14 (3). e0008130. ISSN 1935-2735

Colmant AMG, O'Brien CA, Newton ND, Watterson D, Hardy J, Coulibaly F, Bielefeldt-Ohmann H, Warrilow D, Huang B, Paramitha D, Harrison JJ, Hall RA Hobson-Peters J, (2020) Novel monoclonal antibodies against Australian strains of negeviruses and insights into virus structure, replication and host -restriction. Journal of General Virology. DOI:


Hobson-Peters j, Harrison JJ, Watterson D, Hazlewood JE, Vet LJ, Newton ND, Warrilow D, Colmant AMG, Taylor CT, Huang B, Piyasena TBH, and Chow WK, Setoh YX, Tang B, Nakayama E, Yan K, Amarilla AA, Wheatley SL, Moore PR, Finger M, Kurucz N, Modhiran N, Young PR, Khromykh AA, Bielefeldt-Ohmann H, Suhrbier A, Hall RA, (2019) A rapid and low-containment recombinant platform for flavivirus vaccines and diagnostics using chimeras of a new insect-specific virus. Science Translational Medicine, 11(552). DOI: 10.1126/scitranslmed.aax7888

Huang B, West N, Vider J, Zhang P, Griffiths RE, Wolvetang E, Burtonclay PJ, Warrilow D. (2019) Inflammatory responses to a pathogenic West Nile virus strain. BMC Infectious Diseases, 19:912. DOI: 10.1186/s12879-019-4471-8

Huang B, Jennison AV, Whiley DM, McMahon J, Hewitson GR, Graham RMA, De Jong AJ, Warrilow D. (2019) Illumina sequencing of clinical samples for virus detection in a public health laboratory. Scientific Reports, 9 (5409). DOI: 10.1038/s41598-019-41830-w


Warrilow D, Huang B, Newton ND, Harrison JJ, and Johnson KN, and Chow WK, Hall RA, and Hobson-Peters J, (2018) The taxonomy of an Australian nodavirus isolated from mosquitos. PLoS One, 13 (12). e0210029. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0210029

Prow NA, Mah M, Deerain J, Warrilow D, Colmant AMG, O'Brien CA, Harrison JJ,  McLean BJ, Hewlett EK, Piyasena TBH, Hall-Mendelin S, van den Hurk AF, Watterson D, Huang B, SchulzBL, Webb, CE, Johansen CA, Chow WK, Hobson-Peters J, Cazier C, Coffey LL, Faddy HM, Suhrbier A, Bielefeldt-Ohmann H, Hall RA (2018) New genotypes of Liao ning virus (LNV) in Australia exhibit an insect-specific phenotype. Journal of General Virology. DOI:10.1099/jgv.0.001038

Bruggink L, Witlox K, Huang B, Warrilow D, Marshall JA (2018) GII.4 norovirus recombinant causes gastroenteritis epidemic in eastern Australia, Winter 2017. Journal of Medical Virology. 90 (6), p. 1168-1171. DOI: 10.1002/jmv.25063

Gubala A, Warrilow D (2017) Many encephalitis cases still a medical mystery. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health (Nov 22). 42:106-107. DOI: 10.1111/1753-6405.12740

Lun JH, Hewitt J, Sitabkhan A, Eden J-B, Enosi Tuipulotu D, Netzler NE, Morrell L, Merif J, Jones R, Huang B, Warrilow D, Ressler K-A, Ferson MJ, Dwyer DE, Kok J,Rawlinson WD, Deere D, Crosbie ND, White PA (2018) Emerging recombinant noroviruses identified by clinical and waste water screening. Emerging microbes & infections, 7 (50). DOI:10.1038/s41426-018-0047-8


Huang B, West N P, Vider J, Cox A J, Constantino T, Harrower B, Pyke A T, McMahon J, Northill J A, Riordan T, Warrilow D (2017) Diagnosis and typing of influenza using fluorescent barcoded probes. Scientific Reports, 7: 18092. DOI:10.1038/s41598-017-18333-7

Huang B, Harrower B, Burtonclay P, Warrilow D (2017) Genome sequences of Coxsackievirus B5 isolates from two children with meningitis in Australia. Genome Announcements, 5(41): e01125-17. DOI: 10.1128/genomeA.01125-17

Allcock RJN, Jennison AV, Warrilow D (2017) Towards a universal molecular microbiological test. Journal of Clinical Microbiology, 55(11):3175-3182. DOI: 10.1128/JCM.01155-17

Pyke AT, Huang B, Warrilow D, Moore, PR, McMahon J,  Harrower B (2017) Complete genome sequence of a highly divergent dengue virus type 2 strain, imported into Australia from Sabah, Malaysia. Genome Announcements, 5(29) pii: e00546-17. DOI:10.1128/genomeA.00546-17

Huang B, Pyke AT, McMahon J, Warrilow D. (2017) Complete coding sequence of a case of Chikungunya virus imported into Australia. Genome Announcements, 5(19) pii: e00310-17. DOI: 10.1128/genomeA.00310-17

Warrilow, D (2017) Arboviruses. In: Encyclopedia of Microbiology. Elsevier, pp. 313-321. DOI: 10.1016/B978-0-12-809633-8.13010-9

Montgomery BL, Shivas MA, Hall-Mendelin S, Edwards J, Hamilton NA, Jansen CC, McMahon JL, Warrilow D, van den Hurk AF (2017) Rapid Surveillance for Vector Presence (RSVP): development of a novel system for detecting Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus. PLoS Negl Trop Dis. 11(3): e0005505. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pntd.0005505


Huang B, Prow NA, van den Hurk AF, Allcock RJ, Moore PR, Doggett SL, Warrilow D (2016) Archival isolates confirm a single topotype of West Nile Virus in Australia. PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases, 10(12): e0005159. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pntd.0005159

Huang B, Firth C, Watterson D, Allcock R, Colmant AM, Hobson-Peters J, Kirkland P, Hewitson G, McMahon J, Hall-Mendelin S, van den Hurk AF, Warrilow D. (2016). Genetic characterization of archived Bunyaviruses and their potential for emergence in Australia. Emerging Infectious Diseases, 22:833-840. DOI: 10.3201/eid2205.151566

Harrison JJ,  Warrilow D, McLean BJ, Watterson D, O'Brien C, Colmant AMG, Johansen CA, Barnard RT, Hall-Mendelin S, Davis SS, Hall RA, Hobson-Peters J. (2016) A new orbivirus isolated from mosquitoes in North-Western Australia shows antigenic and genetic similarity to Corriparta Virus but does not replicate in vertebrate cells. Viruses, 8 (5). DOI: 10.3390/v8050141

Shrestha AC, Flower RL, Seed CR, Keller AJ, Harley R, Chan HT, Hoad V, Warrilow D, Northill J, Holmberg JA, Faddy HM (2016) Hepatitis E virus RNA in Australian blood donations. Transfusion. 56(12):3086-3093. DOI: 10.1111/trf.13799

Pyke AT, Warrilow D (2016) Archival collections are important in the study of the biology, diversity, and evolution of arboviruses. Evolutionary Bioinformatics Online. 12(Suppl 2): 27-30. DOI: 10.4137/EBO.S40569

Prow N, Edmonds J, Williams DT, Setoh YX, Bielefeldt-Ohmann H., Suen WW, Hobson-Peters, J., van den Hurk AF, Pyke AT, Hall-Mendelin S, Northill JA, Johansen CA, Warrilow D, Wang J, Kirland PD, Doggestt SL, Andrade CC, Brault AC, Khromykh AA, Hall RA (2016) Virulence and evolution of West Nile Virus, Australia, 1960–2012. Emerging Infectious Diseases, 22(8): 1353-62. DOI: 10.3201/eid2208.151719

Pyke AT, Moore PR, Taylor CT, and Hall-Mendelin S, Cameron JN, Hewitson GR, Pukallus D, Huang B, Warrilow D, van den Hurk AF (2016) Highly divergent dengue virus type 1 genotype sets a new distance record. Scientific Reports, 6: 22356. DOI: 10.1038/srep22356

Huang B, Allcock R, Warrilow D, (2016) Newly characterized arboviruses of northern Australia. Virology Reports, 6: 11-17. DOI: 10.1016/j.virep.2016.01.001

Hobson-Peters J, Warrilow D, McLean BJ, Watterson D, Colmant AMG, van den Hurk AF, Hall-Mendelin S, Hastie ML, Gorman JJ, Harrison JJ, Prow NA, Barnard RT, Allcock R, Johansen CA, Hall RA (2016) Discovery and characterisation of a new insect-specific bunyavirus from Culex mosquitoes captured in northern Australia. Virology. 489: 269-81. DOI: 10.1016/j.virol.2015.11.003


McLean BJ, Hobson-Peters J, Webb C, Watterson D, Prow NA, Nguyen HD, Hall-Mendelin S, Warrilow D, Johansen CA, Jansen C, van den Hurk AF, Beebe N, Schnettler E, Barnard RT, Hall RA (2015) A novel insect-specific flavivirus replicates only in Aedes-derived cells and persists at high prevalence in wild Aedes vigilax populations in Sydney, Australia. Virology. 486: 272-283. DOI: 10.1016/j.virol.2015.07.021

O'Brien CA, Hobson-Peters J, Jam AW, Colmant AM, McLean BJ, Prow NA, Watterson D, Hall-Mendelin S, Warrilow D, Ng ML, Khromykh, AA, Hall RA (2015) Viral RNA intermediates as targets for detection and discovery of novel and emerging mosquito-borne viruses. PLoS Negl Trop Dis. 9(3): e0003629. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pntd.0003629


Shinwari MW, Annand EJ, Driver L, Warrilow D, Harrower BJ, Allcock R, Pukallus D, Harper J, Bingham J, Kung N, Diallo IS. (2014) Australian bat lyssavirus infection in two horses. Veterinary Microbiology, 173 (3-4). pp. 224-231. DOI: 10.1016/j.vetmic.2014.07.029

Poo YS, Rudd PA, Gardner J, Wilson JA, Larcher T, Colle MA, Le TT, Nakaya HI, Warrilow D, Allcock R, Bielefeldt-Ohmann H, Schroder WA, Khromykh AA, Lopez JA, Suhrbier A (2014) Multiple immune factors are involved in controlling acute and chronic chikungunya virus infection. PLoS Negl Trop Dis. 8(12): e3354. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pntd.0003354

Warrilow D, Hall-Mendelin S, Hobson-Peters J, Prow NA, Allcock R, Hall RA (2014) Complete coding sequences of three members of the kokobera group of flaviviruses. Genome Announcements, 18;2(5). pii: e00890-14. DOI: 10.1128/genomeA.00890-14

Shinwari MW, Annand EJ, Driver L, Warrilow D, Harrower B, Allcock RJN, Pukallus D, Harper J, Bingham J, Kung N, Diallo IS (2014) Australian bat lyssavirus infection in two horses. Vet Microbiol. 173(3-4):224-31. DOI: 10.1016/j.vetmic.2014.07.029

Warrilow D, Watterson D, Hall RA, Davis SS, Weir R, Kurucz N, Whelan P, Allcock R, Hall-Mendelin S, O'Brien CA, Hobson-Peters J (2014) A new species of mesonivirus from the Northern Territory, Australia. PLoS One. 9(3): e91103. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0091103

Hall-Mendelin S, Allcock R, Kresoje N, van den Hurk AF, Warrilow D (2013) Detection of arboviruses and other micro-organisms in experimentally infected mosquitoes using massively parallel sequencing. PLoS One. 8(2): e58026. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0058026

Warren K, Wei T, Li D, Qin F, Warrilow D, Lin MH, Sivakumaran H, Apolloni A, Abbott CM, Jones A, Anderson JL, Harrich D. (2012). Eukaryotic elongation factor 1 complex subunits are critical HIV-1 reverse transcription cofactors. PNAS,109(24):9587-9592. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1204673109

van den Hurk AF, Hall-Mendelin S, Johansen CA, Warrilow D, Ritchie SA (2012) Evolution of mosquito-based arbovirus surveillance systems in Australia. Journal of Biomedicine and Biotechnolohy, 2012: 325659. DOI: 10.1155/2012/325659

Taylor C, Playford EG, McBride WJ, McMahon J, Warrilow D (2012) No evidence of prolonged Hendra virus shedding by 2 patients, Australia. Emerging Infectious Diseases, 18(12): 2025-7. DOI: 10.3201/eid1812.120722

Warrilow D, Northill JA, Pyke AT (2012) Sources of dengue virus imported into Queensland, Australia, 2002-2010. Emerging Infectious Diseases, 18(11): 1850-7. DOI: 10.3201/eid1811.120014


August 2019: Chimeric antigens for better flavivirus diagnostics. National Science Week, Coopers Plains Qld.

May 2018: Protecting Australia from future emerging arboviral threats. Viruses, 17-19 May 2018, Katoomba, NSW.

March 2018: The evolution of West Nile virus in Australia, ASM Clinical Microbiology SIG, 21 March 2018, Coopers Plains Qld.

Dec 2017: Evolution of West Nile virus in Australia and emergence of a pro-inflammatory phenotype, with Huang B, Prow N, van den Hurk A,  Allcock R, West N, Vider J, Moore P, Doggett S, in: 9th Australasian Virology Society Meeting, 5-8 December 2017, Glenelg, SA.

Dec 2017: Stuck in the gut: a new clade of insect-specific flaviviruses from Australian Anopheles mosquitoes displays species-specific host-restriction [poster], with Colmant A, Hobson-Peters, J,  Bielefeldt-Ohmann H,  van den Hurk A, Hall-Mendelin  S, Chow W, Johansen C,  Fros J, Simmonds P, Watterson D, Cazier C, Etebari K, Asgari S, Schulz B, Beebe N, Nguyen D, Barnard R, Hall R, in: 9th Australasian Virology Society Meeting (AVS 2017), 5-8 December 2017, Glenelg, SA.

Sep 2016 Hitchhikers from the jungle: assessment of evolution, emergence potential and public health implications of rare and divergent dengue viruses, with Pyke AT, Moore PR, Hall-Mendelin S, Cameron JN, Hewitson GR, Pukallus D, Huang B, van den Hurk AF, in: 12th Symposium of the Mosquito Control Association of Australia and Arbovirus Research in Australia, 4-9 September, 2016, Surfers Paradise, Qld.

Dec 2015: Filling in the knowledge gaps on Australian arboviruses, 8th Australasian Virology Society Meeting, 6-9 December 2015, Hunter Valley, NSW.

Oct 2014: Invited speaker Next generation sequencing for virus diagnostics, surveillance and discovery, Microbiology at QUT and beyond, Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, Qld.

Mar 2014: Invited speaker Next generation sequencing for arbovirus surveillance and discovery, Molecular Microbiology Meeting, 5-6 March 2014, Sydney, NSW.

Dec 2013: Next generation arbovirus surveillance, Australasian Virology Society Meeting, 8-11 December 2013, Queenstown, NZ.

Dec 2011: Sources of dengue importation to areas at risk of epidemic spread in Australia, Australasian Virology Society Meeting, 4-8 December, Kingscliff, NSW.



  • 1998: Ramaciotti Travel Award.
  • 1990: Professor Spencer Smith-White prize, Department of Biological Sciences, University of Sydney.

Grants and funding

  • Queensland Health Forensic and Scientific Services Team R&D Project, 2019-2020, $366,347
  • Queensland Health Forensic and Scientific Services Team R&D Project, 2018-2019, $165,064
  • Queensland Health Forensic and Scientific Services Team R&D Project, 2018-2019, $ 13,363
  • Queensland Health Forensic and Scientific Services Team R&D Project, 2015-2016, $ 79,591
  • Queensland Health Forensic and Scientific Services Team R&D Project, 2013-2014, $ 35,822
  • Queensland Health Forensic and Scientific Services Cabinet R&D Project, 2012-2013, $ 43,093
  • Queensland Health Forensic and Scientific Services Team R&D Project, 2011-2012, $14,736


Dr David Warrilow
Research Coordinator, Virology
Public and Environmental Health