Molecular pathology

The Molecular Pathology laboratory at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre is the premier clinical cancer molecular diagnostic genomics service in Australia.

The Molecular Pathology Laboratory provides a range of National Association of Testing Authorities Australia (NATA) accredited testing to researchers and clinicians at Peter Mac and other cancer centres and hospitals throughout the Asia Pacific region. In addition to the laboratory’s core business, it is an active participant in clinical and translational research including clinical trials.


The facility offers state-of-the-art molecular services on multiple high-throughput test platforms including preparation RNA, DNA, ctDNA and protein from a large number of samples for molecular assays, massive parallel sequencing, Sanger sequencing, gene expression and quantitative PCR.

The laboratory can also offer agile assay and pipeline development, sequence analysis provision through our integrated PathOS web based genomics reporting system, and a large range of kit based companion diagnostics for trials requiring particular assays.

The dedicated clinical trials team regularly works in partnership with collaborators to design clinical grade tumour specific assays for tumour profiling to support patient care, basic research and clinical research with an emphasis on ancillary biomarker studies in small and large scale clinical trials.

Key services include single and multi-gene assays/panels for:

  • Familial cancers (breast, ovarian, endometrial, prostate, GI, colorectal and pancreatic)
  • Somatic cancers (lung, melanoma, GI, colorectal, and CUP)
  • Haematological malignancies (myeloid, lymphoid, and MRD monitoring).

Example Panel Tests available

  • Prostate Panel
  • Germline Panel
  • Customer TruSight Panel
  • Comprehensive Panel
  • Somatic Panel

Technology & Equipment

Key technology utilised by the Molecular Pathology Laboratory include:

Next Generation Sequencers

EGFR / Panels etc.

  • Hamilton chemagicSTAR, MicrolabSTAR and STARlet automation platforms
  • Roche LC480 and z480 realtime PCR instrumentation
  • ABI 3730 Genetic Analyser
  • Qiagen PyroMark Q96 Pyrosequencer
  • Fluidigm HD BioMark
  • Illumina MiSeq
  • NextSeq 500


The laboratory has NATA ISO 15189:2007 accreditation for genetic testing, molecular genetics, DNA sequencing, predictive genetic testing, pharmacogenetic testing, genetic testing for mosaic gene variants (cancer and somatic mosaicism), screening for unknown mutation, assay for defined mutation or polymorphism, massively parallel sequencing, and microsatellite instability.