Page Index

Analytical ultracentrifugation facility Biacore surface plasmon resonance facility Biobank Bioinformatics
Chemical Biology Computing
Confocal microscopy
DNA sequencing Electron microscopy Fish facility
Flow Cytometry FPLC Genomics GMP Facilities
High throughput compound screening HPLC
Laboratory automation
Mass Spectrometry Microarray services Nanotechnology
Transgenic Facility
Viral vector facility

Analytical ultracentrifugation facility

Analytical Ultracentrifugation
The UCL Division of Biosciences Research Facility has two analytical ultracentrifugation (AUC) instruments that make possible simultaneous velocity and equilibrium experiments so that protein associative behaviour in solution can be explored in detail.  Their track record with the AUC enables them to claim that they are the most successful AUC laboratory in the London area, and are always interested in new AUC collaborations with colleagues.

Contact: Jayesh Gor

Biacore surface plasmon resonance facility


The UCL Division of Biosciences Research Facility has a Biacore X-100 instrument which makes complementary measurements on a surface to those in solution from AUC. The extent to which different molecules interact with a single partner immobilized on a sensor surface reveals the specificity of an interaction, and information on dissociation constants is obtained. Apart from the need to immobilise the partner on a chip surface, the method is artifact-free and does not require the use of any labelling.

Contact: Jayesh Gor

UCL-RFH Biobank housed at the Royal Free Hospital

Contact: Dr Mark Lowdell

UCL Cancer Institute and Pathology Biobank

Contact: Dr. Adrienne Flanagan

MRC-Wellcome Trust Human Developmental Biology Resource housed at the UCL Institute of Child Health

Contact: HDBR Resource Manager London

The Bloomsbury Centre for Bioinformatics is a collaborative venture between UCL and Birkbeck College, covering protein structure prediction and classification, genomic and transcriptomic data analysis, statistical genetics and systems biology.

The R.A. Fisher Centre of Computational Biology is an interdisciplinary centre of excellence for mathematical and computational analysis of the fast-growing data in genetics and biology.


The Biostatistics Unit at the Eastman Dental Institute provides training and support

Statistical Support Service at the UCL Institute of Child Health/Great Ormond Street Hospital

The UCL Partners Biostatistical Network is open to all statisticians working in medical research within UCL Partners.

UGI outreach service for core support in bioinformatics and statistical genetics


The aim of the UCL Chemibank is to enable small molecule ligand discovery for UCL's research community. The facility stores complete chemical libraries and compound collections in a controlled environment. A range of chemoinformatic and biological assay services is provided for early drug discovery projects and to further existing projects in lead selection and library design.

Contact:  Dave Selwood

Chemical Biology

Chemical Biology

The aim of the UCL Centre for Chemical Biology is to be a dedicated facility for small molecule synthetic chemistry with the express purpose of developing small molecule probes in collaboration with biomedical scientists for use within academia. The four programmes currently being developed cover small molecule modulators of enzymes and proteins; development of 'labelled' probes to aid fundamental biological and clinical studies, including imaging; synthetic peptide and protein chemistry to aid fundamental biological and clinical studies; structure based design, modelling and molecular dynamic simulation.

Contact: Professor Stephen Caddick, Director


Research Computing at UCL
The Research Computing community at UCL aims to facilitate a collegial and collaborative approach to the provision, management and development of services and infrastructure for capacity and capability High Performance Computing (HPC), and to exploit interdisciplinary synergies across the wide spectrum of research excellence at UCL.

Information for users available at:

Clare Gryce, Manager, Research Computing Information Services Division.  Telephone: +44 (0)20 7679 7394 (internal: 37394)

Further contact information available at:

Confocal microscopy

Confocal Microscopes at UCL

(I) The UCL Centre for Cell and Molecular Dynamics, housed in the Division of Biosciences, consists of six confocal microscopes, including two 2-photon microscopes with incubation chambers for maintaining preparations for long time-lapse imaging. It also has an analysis room and workstations for 3D reconstruction and image analysis. Planned expansion of the centre will include FRAP, TIRF and FLIM microscopy.

Contact: Chris Thrasivoulou

(II) The Wolfson Institute for Biomedical Research’s Scientific Support services has both a Leica TCS SP Confocal Microscope and a Perkin Elmer ERS Live Cell system. They are both highly adaptable and user-friendly systems, with an intuitive interface, permitting easy control of image manipulation, and provide superior image quality.

Contact: Tomas Adejumo

(III) The confocal microscopy Core Facility at the UCL Institute of Child Health provides state of the art instrumentation for imaging and data analysis. The facility is equipped with two confocal microscopes: a Leica TCS SP2 (with 2-photon capability) and a new Zeiss LSM 710 (installed June 2009). The systems allow a range of experiments with fixed or live samples and environmental chambers (control of temperature and gases) are available on all systems making it possible to perform experiments over long time courses. More specialised imaging experiments including FRET and FRAP can also be performed on the confocal microscopes. The facility has also a wide-field microscope fitted with an incubation chamber for live imaging. We also provided support for image analysis and experiment design.

Contact: Dr Bertrand Vernay

DNA sequencing

DNA Sequencing at UCL
The Wolfson Institute for Biomedical Research’s Scientific Support services uses state of the art AB sequencing technology to provide high quality reads, fast. Result analysis and troubleshooting come as standard.

Contact: Paul Stevens or Zoe Ward
Electron microscopy (I) The main UCL Biosciences EM Facility has a number of Transmission Electron Microscopes (TEM) and Scanning Electron Microscopes (SEM), including a new field emission scanning microscope. The Facility also contains a sample preparation laboratory, with a range of preparation equipment. It runs as a multi user facility or on a service basis, which allows users the choice as to what level of involvement they wish to have. The list of equipment, techniques and capabilities, costs and charges are available at

Contact: Mark Turmaine or Katie Bax

(II) The Electron Microscope Unit at the Institute of Neurology offers comprehensive facilities for specimen preparation and use of Transmission and Scanning Electron Microscopes. A full technical service is provided for non-EM users from Departments within UCL and from outside.

Contact: Kerrie Venner

Fish facility

Fish Facility at UCL
The UCL zebrafish facility comprises four separate multi-rack systems and several standalone and bench top systems housed in five separate rooms. The facility currently holds around 400 genetically distinct lines - currently approximately 70,000 fish, with a maximum capacity of 100,000 fish.

Contact: Carole Wilson

Flow cytometry

Flow cytometry

(I) The FACSCalibur, housed at the Wolfson Institute for Biomedical Research’s Scientific Support services uses an air-cooled argon-ion laser (wavelength emission of 488 nm) and a red diode laser (wavelength emission of 635 nm). It has four fluorescence detection channels which simultaneously detect green, yellow-orange and red light emissions: Fluorescein (FITC) is used extensively for the green channel and Phycoerythrin (PE) or Propidium Iodide (PI - a DNA stain) for the yellow-orange channel. Dyes are also available which can be excited at 488 nm yet emit in the red (i.e PerCP). The FACSCalibur can analyze cell suspensions at the rate of several hundred cells per second. It is a closed fluidic system - allowing analysis of biohazardous samples (such as human blood samples, bacteria, etc) with appropriate precautions and authorization.

Contact: Tomas Adejumo or Zoe Ward

(II) The MoFlo, housed at the Wolfson Institute for Biomedical Research's Scientific Support services is an air-in-jet high-speed cell sorter, equipped with three lasers that can measure up to 14 parameters and sort four populations simultaneously. It is fitted with a CyClone, the automated deposition unit, allowing single cell deposition for cloning purposes. Sorting under sterile conditions can be done if requested and sorted cells can be collected in several various vessels (e.g. 1.5-50ml tubes, as well as 6-96-well and 10cm well plates).The MoFlo temperature can be controlled over the sorting time from 4-37°C. It can be set up with different nozzle sizes - from 50-150um - which allows a nice range of cell sizes to be analyzed. The MoFlo typically sorts at rates of 10,000 - 30,000 cells/second, with over 95% purity and good recovery rates.

Contact: Tomas Adejumo

(III) The Flow Cytometry Core Facility at UCL Institute of Child Health and Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children operates three cell analysers: one BD LSRII with four lasers and 19 parameters (17 colours) detection capability, one CyAn ADP with two lasers and nine parameters (seven colours) detection platform, and one Special Order BD FACSArray with a 488 Blue Laser and two colours detection (530/30 and 575/26 filters), a 635 Red laser and two colours (670LP and 780/60 filters), and a 96-well plate loader for high throughput analysis. FACSArray is convenient especially for high throughput GFP screening.

For cell sorting, the facility offers sorts on the latest technology from Beckman Coulter, the high speed cell sorter MoFlo XDP, which has a UV laser (350 nm), an Argon laser (488 nm), and a Red diode (633 nm), and can detect nine colours, five off the blue laser, two off the UV laser, and two off the red diode.

Contact: Dr. Ayad Eddaoudi


There are three ÄKTA FPLC systems used for biomolecular characterisation and purification using Size Exclusion, Ion Exchange, Reverse Phase or Affinity Chromatography strategies. Two are housed in the cold room and the other is at room temperature.

Contact: Carolyn Hyde


UCL Genomics provides support from grant application, through experimental design and application development, to data analysis.
Contact: UCL Genomics

The UCL Centre for Comparative Genomics offers high throughput sequencing and genotyping services via its DNA Analyzer facility. The idea is to provide an extremely cost-efficient system with low labour costs.
Contact: Mari-Wyn Burley

GMP facilities


The GMP facility for cell therapy housed at the Royal Free Hospital is the only MHRA accredited GMP facility in the UK.

Contact: Dr. Mark Lowdell, the only MHRA-license cell therapy holder in the UK.

The GMP facilities for cell manipulation and gene transfer at Great Ormond Street Hospital would be adaptable for stem cell therapies. 

Contact: Sue Swift

The GMP facility at the Institute of Ophthalmology is called the Cells for Sight Tissue Bank. Cells for Sight can produce cultured cell therapies for patient transplantation in accordance with Human Tissue Authority guidelines (with whom we have a licence) and the EU Tissues and Cells Directive. 

Contact: Julie Daniels

The GMP facility for viral vector production and cell processing for gene therapy, funded by the Wellcome Trust and the Wolfson Foundation, provides resources and know-how for vector production and cell processing in the existing facilities at Chenies Mews and at the Great Ormond Street Hospital.

Contact: Dr. Olivier Danos

High throughput compound screening The Institute of Structural Molecular Biology (ISMB) has a high-throughput NMR screening platform, including one 500Mhz, one 600MHz and one soon-to-be-installed 700MHz system, providing highthroughput small molecule screening capability by NMR. It houses state-of-the-art instruments for highthroughput screening of compounds using surface plasmon resonance (e.g. Biacore 3000 equipment) and their detailed biophysical characterization (isothermal titration calorimetry, differential scanning calorimetry, fluorescence, AUC). X-ray crystallography screening to aid in design of bioactive molecule design (including two generators and two image plate detectors) is also available.

Contact: Professor Gabriel Waksman, Director


The Wolfson Institute for Biomedical Research’s Scientific Support services has four HPLC systems, one Gilson preparative/analytical system and the rest Shimadzu analytical instruments. These are all equipped with Auto samplers, Diode Array Detectors and Fraction collectors and can be used in Isocratic or Gradient mode. The systems are used principally for synthetic product characterisation and chromatography based bio-assays. One System is fitted with a Fluorimeter and a cooled autosampler for temperature dependant assays.

Contact: Dr. Carolyn Hyde


Imaging at UCL

The Imaging Facilities at UCL Biosciences comprise a suite of confocal, 2-photoin luminescence, wide field and conventional imaging systems. These systems will cover most imaging requirements for cells and tissues. There is a range of upright and inverted systems with various stage configurations. Environmental chambers are available on some systems making it possible to perform experiments over long time courses. More specialised imaging requirements including FRET, FLIM and FRAP can also be performed on some of the systems. The main Facilities are currently located on the 5th floor of the Rockefeller Building and a smaller unit is located on the 1st floor of the Medical Sciences Building.

The Facility includes the Digital Imaging Unit, covering photography, illustration, page layout, scanning and the use of the Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop programmes. 

Confocal Unit Support Staff: Dr Christopher Thrasivoulou, Daniel Ciantar or Tim Robson

Contact for Digital Imaging: Jane Pendjiky

Centre for Advanced Biomedical Imaging is a new multidisciplinary research centre for experimental imaging, aiming to establish an integrated strategy for the development and application of novel in vivo imaging technologies to further understand the mechanisms of disease and develop therapeutic strategies. The Centre provides state-of-the-art magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), photoacoustic imaging, 2-photon laser-scanning microscopy and   ultrasound. Additional imaging technologies that will be incrementally added to the centre include bioluminescence and fluorescence imaging as well as SPECT/MRI and PET/CT. The Centre is located in the heart of the UCL campus in the Paul O’Gorman Building on Huntley Street and is ideally suited for cross-disciplinary work in neuroscience, cardiovascular biology, stem cell tracking and oncology.

Contact: Mark Lythgoe

Cancer Imaging Centre

UCL Centre for Medical Image Computing is a world class grouping combining excellence in medical imaging sciences with innovative computational methodology. Our research finds application in biomedical research and in health care. The research of the group focuses on detailed structural and functional analysis in neurosciences, imaging to guide interventions, image analysis in drug discovery, imaging in cardiology and imaging in oncology with a strong emphasis on e-science technologies. The Centre, which is a joint initiative between the Departments of Medical Physics and Computer Science, has very close links with the Faculty of Clinical Sciences, the Faculty of Life Sciences and associated Clinical Institutes, in particular the Institute of Neurology and the Institute of Child Health. We have links with the Centre for Neuroimaging Techniques (CNT), London Centre for Nanotechnology and the Centre for Healthcare Informatics and Medical Education (CHIME).

The Imaging Facility at the Institute of Ophthalmology offers UK academics access to a broad range of advanced imaging and specimen preparation techniques. The electron microscopes, preparative laboratories and equipment are located in the Cayton Street basement along with the PALM laser capture microscope and Zeiss LSM 700 and 710 confocal microscopes.  The Leica TCS is located in the JIF Building. The policy of the facility is to train users to prepare and examine their own specimens wherever possible, utilising one or more of the available microscopes.

Contact: Dr. Peter Munro

More imaging services are listed here

Laboratory automation

Laboratory Automation
The Hamilton Microlab® STAR provides automated pipetting for virtually any assay. Replating is fast and efficient with no cross contamination and there is the option to aspirate/dispense into 1536 well plates, so assay miniaturisation is also possible. Unlike other robotic platforms, this uses air displacement pipetting removing the risk of system fluid causing problems with a protocol. Medium to high throughput applications can easily be accommodated on this platform.

Contact: Paul Stevens or Jacob Raby

Mass Spectrometry

Mass Spectronomy

(I) Brucker MicroTOF mass spectrometry facility at UCL Biosciences has a Bruker MicroTOF Focus ESI-TOF mass spectrometer that is better for lower masses and an AGILENT 1100 HPLC purification input to mass spectrometer recommended for higher masses.

Contact: Jayesh Gor

(II) The Wolfson Institute for Biomedical Research’s Scientific Support services runs a Kratos Axima CFR which is a Matrix Assisted Laser Desorption Ionisation Time Of Flight Instrument. It gives monoisotopic resolution to 3000 Da up to a mass of 6000. It can analyse masses up to 100,000 Da both in positive and negative mode. It is also possible to detect neutral elements from a Post Source Decay spectrum fragmentation when in reflectron mode. Determination of intact protein (up to 100,000Da) and DNA molecular masses as well as molecules with masses lower than 500Da are possible. There is also a protocol for identifying proteins using tryptic digestion and database searches using MASCOT (Peptide Mass Fingerprint) which is used in Proteomics. This can be done on proteins in gels too. A kit is available for you to use to digest your samples for Peptide Mass Fingerprinting.

Contact: Dr. Carolyn Hyde

(III) The biological mass spectrometry centre is dedicated to developing rapid, sensitive methods to study, diagnose and monitor the treatment of patients from Great Ormond Street Hospital and the Institute of Neurology. This combined proteomic and metabolomic mass spectrometry centre provides a unique environment whereby both clinical and non-clinical researchers work side by side, using state-of-the-art technology, to study the pathogenesis of childhood disease. In addition to housing advanced robotic, chromatography and electrophoresis equipment, ICH also houses eight mass spectrometers. However, the Centre also collaborates and provides access to biological mass spectrometry to several other groups within UCL.

Contact information: ICH website

Microarray services


(I) UCL Biosciences facility based on the second floor of the Anatomy building provides equipment and services to groups across the Division of Biosciences, with a range of access options - from using the equipment yourself to facility staff undertaking experiments on your behalf.

Contact: Mary Rahman, Manager or Pala Sanapu Reddy, Technician

(II) The Wolfson Institute for Biomedical Research’s Scientific Support

(III) The Institute of Child Health Gene Microarray Centre

Both (II) and (III) above are part of UCL Genomics which provides comprehensive facilities for gene expression and genotyping. They do not provide a bioinformatics service, although they do offer data analysis.

Contact: Dr. Mike Hubant, Head ICH Gene Microarray Centre or Nipurna Jina, Manager, ICH Gene Microarray Centre


The London Centre for Nanotechnology (LCN) is a new multidisciplinary research institute and a joint venture between UCL and Imperial College. It is housed in a high-tech purpose-built building on the Gower Street campus and comprises state-of-the-art clean-room, characterisation, fabrication, imaging, manipulation and design laboratories. This experimental research is complemented by leading edge modelling, visualisation and theory. Of particular interest to UCL neuroscientists, the LCN offers expertise and facilities in atomic force microscopy, scanning tunneling microscopy, focused ion beam SEM, as well as nanobiochemistry and nanoelectronics laboratories.

Contact information:


The UCL Wellcome Trust Centre for Neuroimaging is perhaps the world’s foremost centre for functional imaging. The centre has three fMRI scanners available to researchers: a 1.5T Siemens Sonata and two 3T scanners (Siemens Allegra and Trio), plus an 275-channel MEG scanner and facilities for EEG, TMS and combined fMRI-TMS or fMRI-EEG. The centre developed and maintains SPM, the most widely used analysis software for neuroimaging data.

(I) The Proteomics Facility at ICH  provides mass mapping identification of proteins excised from gels and analysis by MALDI QTOF MS, sequencing identification of proteins excised from gels and analysis by ESI QTOF MS, identification and quantitation of proteins within mixtures (MSe Label-free Quantitation), SELDI TOF MS biomarker screen and 2D-PAGE / DIGE biomarker screen.
Please contact the laboratory prior to sending any proteins for analyses.

Contacts: Catherine Chong, Prof. Peter Clayton

(II) The Proteomics Facility at the Royal Free campus provides access to nanospray LC-MS/MS of proteins separated by 1D- and 2D-gel electrophoresis. This facility aims to improve the understanding and application of proteomics within numerous areas of biomedical research.

Contacts:  Dr Nick Beaumont, Facility Manager, Dr Justin Hsuan, Academic Manager

(III) UCL Proteomics supports state-of-the-art mass spectrometry, quantitative protein profiling, shotgun proteomics, MS tissue imaging and metabolomics expertise.



(I) UCL Biosciences facility based on the second floor of the Anatomy building provides equipment and services to groups across the Division of Biosciences, with a range of access options - from using the equipment yourself to facility staff undertaking experiments on your behalf.

Contact: Mary Rahman, Manager

(II) The Wolfson Institute for Biomedical Research’s Scientific Support services facility has an Eppendorf Mastercycler ep Realplex considered one of the most sophisticated quantitative Real-time PCR (qPCR) systems currently available. The system contains 96 independent LEDs, enabling extremely accurate absolute and relative target quantification. Additionally, it has the ability to detect up to four fluorophores simultaneously, thereby allowing both monoplex, and multiplex reactions.

Contact: Jacob Raby or Catherine King

An A-Z list of Resources (equipment and technologies) is available here

Transgenic Facility

UCL Wolfson Institute for Biomedical Research

UCL Transgenic Facility at the Wolfson Institute for Biomedical Research

Contact: Bill Richardson

ES cell and chimera production service at UCL Institute of Child Health.

Contact: Juan Pedro Martinez Barbera

Viral vector facility

The MRC Laboratory for Molecular Cell Biology (LMCB) has extensive facilities for most modern molecular approaches, including cell culture and microinjection facilities. The LMCB houses a viral laboratory suite which is available to UCL staff, and which can be used for the creation of lenti- and adenoviruses for neuronal transduction and for tracing the location of proteins in neurons. This facility is complemented by a new category 3 virus facility in the UCL Research Department of Structural and Molecular Biology.
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Page last modified on 22 dec 11 09:40