Eliava Institute

George Eliava Institute of Bacteriophages, Microbiology and Virology

George Eliava Institute of Bacteriophages, Microbiology and Virology is world known institution in the field of  bacteriophage research and applied microbiology currently operating under authority of Ministry of Education and Science of Georgia. The main research activity of the institute is focused on isolation, selection and study of effective phages against human, animal and plant bacterial pathogens. Throughout more than 80 years history, the institute directed its activities towards elaboration, improvement and practical application of therapeutic, prophylactic and diagnostic bacteriophages against variety of bacterial infections.

The Eliava Institute was founded in 1923 by distinguished Georgian physician, bacteriologist and phage researcher Prof. George Eliava. An extraordinary role in the institute’s development was played by famous French-Canadian scientist Felix D’Herelle, who first discovered bacteriophages. These scientists developed the joint idea of creating the World Centre of Phage Research and Phage Therapy in Tbilisi, Georgia.

Unfortunately, this was the time of Stalin’s Terror. In 1937, Eliava was executed, along with his contemporaries, and D’Herelle never came back to Georgia.
During its long history, the Eliava Institute has been known by several respectedtitles. The best-known was the Scientific-Industrial Union (SIU) “Bacteriophage.” It included two major parts, the Research Institute and Industrial Department, the latter consisting of ten manufacturing units. Altogether, roughly 800 people used to work at the SIU “Bacteriophage”, of whom 120 engaged in research. After the collapse of the Soviet Union, the Industrial Department was partly privatized, although biggest part of scientists stayed with the Institute.

During the Soviet period, the Eliava Institute played an important role in the elaboration of novel biological preparations and manufacturing products against almost all major bacterial and viral diseases, such as anthrax, rubies, tuberculosis, brucellosis, salmonellosis, dysentery, etc.
For many years, EliavaIBMV has been a leading organization in bacteriophage research, production of phage preparations and their practical application. Experts around the world recognize the contribution of Eliava IBMV scientists in the production of diagnostic, prophylactic and therapeutic preparations (bacteriophage “cocktails,” biological anti-bacterial and immunological medications) against bacterial infections and their application in various fields (medicine, veterinary, and environmental protection).