Health and medical research occurs across a spectrum, from research about DNA and proteins, single cells and tissue types, all the way through to people and populations.


Diagram. The health and medical research spectrum

Research spectrum 2



Actin protein model source: Ludovic R. Otterbein, Philip Graceffa, Roberto Dominguez. 2001. The Crystal Structure of Uncomplexed Actin in the ADP State. Vol. 293, Issue 5530, pp. 708-711 DOI: 10.1126/science.1059700


The health and medical research environment involves many parties, including consumers, researchers, funders, the health system and private industry. Health and medical research also overlaps with health and medical innovation and commercialisation. See the Future Health Research and Innovation (FHRI) Fund innovation page for more information about health and medical innovation and commercialisation in the context of the FHRI Fund. 

The FHRI Fund uses a specific definition for ‘research’ that helps to determine which activities are and are not eligible for funding support. Visit the Health and medical research page to learn more.

There is an expectation that health and medical research will be conducted according to the highest ethical and integrity standards. The concepts of research ethics and governance contribute to ensuring that appropriate checks and balances are in place before health and medical research can be undertaken. See the Research ethics and governance page for more information.

Last Updated: 01/06/2021