Rodolphe Mérieux Laboratory of Rio Branco (Brazil)

The Rodolphe Mérieux Laboratory in Rio Branco (Brazil) is the first P3 biosafety level laboratory in the Amazon region.



Rio Branco

Official opening

April 19, 2016


400 m2

Research focus

Arbovirus - Viral hepatitis

The Rodolphe Mérieux Laboratory of Rio Branco (Brazil) is the first biosafety level 3 (BSL3) laboratory to be built in the Amazon region. It is directed by Daniel da Matta.

It was founded at the same time as the Charles Mérieux Center for Infectious Disease, marking a key step in the fight against viral hepatitis – a major public health concern affecting thousands of patients in Amazonia.

Specialized testing and scientific research

Located within the FUNDHACRE de Rio Branco Hospital, the Rodolphe Mérieux Laboratory focuses on:

  • Providing patients quality diagnostics for improved patient care
  • Contributing to teaching students of clinical biology and infectious diseases
  • Heading up research projects on local public health challenges, particularly viral hepatitis and COVID-19.

The implementation of routine tests, specialized tests for viral hepatitis, including hepatitis Delta, a scourge in the region, as well as surveillance projects for circulating and emerging viruses, make it possible to improve patient monitoring and meet public health needs.

Amazonia’s first BSL3 laboratory

In addition to its biosafety level 3 – a first in the Amazon rainforest – the Rodolphe Mérieux Laboratory also features:

  • Three P2-level molecular biology laboratories for virology and microbiology
  • A P3-level laboratory for viruses and bacteria

The laboratory was designed in accordance with ISO 14 644-1, “Cleanrooms and associated controlled environments”, part Classification of air cleanliness, and ISO 14 644-4, “Cleanrooms and associated controlled environments”, part Design and construction.

Brazil has 3 member institutions of the GABRIEL laboratory network: the Respiratory Viruses Laboratory of the Oswaldo Cruz Institute (Rio de Janeiro), the Bioinformatics Laboratory (LABINFO) of the National Laboratory for Scientific Informatics (LNCC) and the Institute of Tropical Medicine (IMT) of the University of São Paulo (USP).


  • State of Acre / Secretary of Health of Acre (SESACRE)
  • Acre State Hospital Foundation (FUNDHACRE)
  • Fiocruz
  • Laboratory of Bioinformatics (LABINFO) of the National Laboratory for Scientific Computing (LNCC)
  • Tropical Medicine Institute (IMT) of the São Paulo University (USP)
  • Federal University of Bahia (UFBA)
  • Federal University of Acre (UFAC)
  • SOS Amazonia Association
  • Maria Emília Foundation (FME)