UCL Division of Surgery and Interventional Science


Tissue Access for Patient Benefit

We facilitate the access, storage, use and transfer of human organs, cells, and tissue between clinical centres within UCL, academic groups, universities, hospitals, medical researchers, and biotechnology companies, to help researchers access the materials they need.

Our work

It can be difficult for researchers to access human tissue for their work due to long ethical, regulatory, and contractual processes. We can assist with this. UCL has several licensed biobanks which can prepare and hold human tissue samples for use by medical researchers.

Our aim is to be a leading academic institution in providing human tissue for medical research within the UK and globally. London has the highest concentration of biomedical researchers in Europe, and TAPb are associated with several research-intensive hospitals in north London.

To achieve this vision, we are working towards three goals:

  1. Create an overarching infrastructure using a cost recovery model.
  2. Consolidate information and availability from disparate human tissue resource around UCL.
  3. Gain centralised ethical and regulatory and contractual approval for use of the tissue. 

This will drastically reduce the time needed to obtain human tissue for research and simplify the costing model.

Researchers can also access expertise from TAPb on regulatory, ethics and practical issues concerning access, transfer, and use of this type of material from our organised events.

Our facilities

  • Secure IT hub for real time monitoring of ethics, collection and distribution of samples.
  • Team of Tissue Collection Officers trained in ethics, governance and tissue collection.
  • Admin / scientific team with expertise in lab-based research, human tissue use, ethics and governance. 

Team Members

Prof. Brian Davidson

Prof. Brian Davidson (Lead)

Prof. Barry Fuller

Prof. Barry Fuller (Lead)

Mr Amir Gander

Prof. Amir Gander (Director)

Nathan Griffiths

Dr Nathan Griffiths (Director)

Carolina Ramos

Dr Carolina Ramos (Laboratory Manager)

Natalie Getreu

Natalie Getreu (Portfolio Manager)

Diana Kateregga

Diana Kateregga (Research Assistant)

Akshay Mohan

Akshay Mohan (Tissue Collection)

Aziza Turghunova

Aziza Turghunova (Tissue Collection)

Komal Ramsahye

Komal Ramashaye (Tissue Collection)

Kyra Fraser

Kyra Fraser (Tissue Collection)

Stephanie Bogan

Stephanie Bogan (Tissue Collection)

Graphical render of a transparent human body, with target highlighted around stomach/liver region

Sample and data collections at UCL

Biobanks at UCL


Data repositories


Access to equipment

UCL is investing in a network of sustainable world-class science and technology platforms, ensuring our researchers have access to equipment and expertise essential to supporting world-leading research.

Groups using human tissue


Clinical trials


Funding / Partnerships

  • UCL Engineering

Selected publications

  1. Schmidt NM, Wing PAC, Diniz MO, Pallett LJ, Swadling L, Davidson B, et al. (2021). Targeting human Acyl-CoA:cholesterol acyltransferase as a dual viral and T cell metabolic checkpoint. Nat Commun 12, 2814.
  2. Zakeri N, Hall A, Swadling L, Pallett LJ, Gander A, Davidson BR, et al. (2022). Characterisation and induction of tissue-resident gamma delta T-cells to target hepatocellular carcinoma. Nat Commun 13, 1372.
  3. Abudhaise H, Taanman JW, DeMuylder P, Fuller B, Davidson BR. (2021). Mitochondrial respiratory chain and Krebs cycle enzyme function in human donor livers subjected to end-ischaemic hypothermic machine perfusion. PLoS ONE 16(10): e0257783.
  4. Sims JM, Lawrence E, Glazer K, Gander A, Fuller B, Davidson, BR et al. (2021). Lessons learned from the COVID-19 pandemic about sample access for research in the UK. BMJ Open 2022;12:e047309.


Our experts and distinguished guests have discussed some of the core issues around transplantation.

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Brian Davidson | A Brief History of Transplantation Organ Donation and Research

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Sarah Hosgood | Improving Kidney Transplantation by 'Pre-conditioning'

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Paolo Muiesan | Split liver transplant benefits for children

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Victoria Marshment | The HTA 2004 applied to transplantation and research

More videos

Safer Medicines Campaign

Among the topics addressed by Safer Medicines Campaign is the use of human tissue for research. See the full video.

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DNA analysis under the Human Tissue Act

  • An introduction to the HTA
  • Use of DNA in research
  • Non-concentual DNA analysis
  • DNA definitions as part of the HTA
  • Consent for DNA use

Download Powerpoint

Transparent human body model against a blue sky background