Research Facilities

We provide a high quality research and training environment with a wide range of state-of-the-art facilities which enable us to support biomedical research at an international level. 

Our facilities assist researchers and students within the university and are widely used by our NHS colleagues/collaborators.   We have a strong commitment to working collaboratively with national and international research institutions and companies and welcome enquiries from people looking to access our facilities.

Biacore

Our BIAcore T200 enables the label-free analysis of protein/protein as well as protein/small molecule interactions using a range of immobilisation strategies. This high performance platform can be used to understand molecular mechanisms and structure-function relationships, perform rapid and accurate calibration-free concentration analysis, define potential drug targets  and screen and characterise drug candidates.The equipment is based in the Wellcome Trust Brenner Building and is a shared resource which implements a booking system and is accessible through the facility manager.

BioScreening Technology Group

Please visit the BioScreening Technology Group web pages here.

Clinical MRI facility

For information about the Clinical MRI facility, from the Multidisciplinary Cardiovascular Research Centre webpages, click here.

Confocal microscopy

Our newly acquired Nikon A1R is an advanced fully automated high specification confocal imaging system. It has a unique hybrid confocal scan head, which incorporates a resonant scanner, which allows high-speed imaging, and a conventional galvanometer to produce high-resolution images.

Click here for more information.

Digital pathology (whole slide imaging)

Established in 2003, the Leeds digital pathology project is one of the largest digital pathology projects in the world. Based at Wellcome Trust Brenner Building on St James's University Hospital site, it hosts four Aperio virtual slide scanners with a capacity of 2000-5000 slides per month. The system is available for viewing all virtual slides on the internet. Dedicated virtual slide storage includes 180Tb of online storage with local and remote backups.

Standard and large format histopathology slides can be scanned at 20x and 40x magnification, including whole sections, immunohistochemistry and tissue microarrays (TMAs). All slides are scanned by dedicated scanner technicians who perform a visual quality control of scan quality.  In addition to standard vendor-supplied virtual slide serving and viewing software the project has in-house TMA software, stereometry software, custom image analysis development capacity and our unique 3D pathology software.

Our research interests are in clinical use of virtual slides including developing the novel "Leeds virtual microscope", a high performance digital pathology workstation, the "Powerwall", a wall sized display for teaching and collaboration, and image analysis.

The project has a dedicated website and web development capacity to design and host individual project websites. For further information and contact details click here

Flow cytometry

This facility aims to provide high throughput multicolour flow cytometric analysis of samples using our up to date analysers and to provide researchers with rapid multicolour sterile cell sorting capabilities for cell purification. The facility consists of 2 support staff and offers a range of flow cytometry applications. We are located on levels 5 (r5.05b) and 6 (r6.04a) of the WTBB.

Click here for more information.

Histology

The LIMM Histology service is based in the Wellcome Trust Brenner Building at St James's University Hospital. A full histology service is offered, including tissue fixation, processing into paraffin wax blocks, sectioning and staining. Two experienced staff provide the core service and the aim is to provide a maximum turnaround time of one week for routine specimens (processing and staining for haematoxylin and eosin). Urgent samples can be processed by special request. 

For further information please visit the Virtual Pathology web pages. 

Laser capture microscopy

The ArcturusXT™ Microdissection System combines both a gentle infrared (IR) laser ideal for capture of single cells and small numbers of cells, and Ultraviolet (UV) laser for precision cutting optimal for dense tissue structures and isolation of large numbers of cells and tissue areas. Captured material is suitable for various downstream processes that require nucleic acids or proteins, and expansion of captured live cell populations. This system is suitable for isolating material or cells from thick or thin tissue sections, frozen or fixed, stained or unstained sections, hydrated or dehydrated samples, fine needle aspirates and live cell cultures. The system is also equipped for fluorescence microscopy, this enables the user to identify and isolate target cells that have been fluorescently labelled.

Live cell imaging

Next Generation Sequencing

The NGS facility is a partnership between the University of Leeds & the Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust

The facility is currently equipped with Illumina HiSeq and MiSeq sequencers, and we can discuss which of these may meet your needs for sequencing of DNA or RNA samples. Depending on requirements, we can sequence user-prepared libraries or provide a limited library preparation service. The facility has a proven track record in the effective use of exome, RNASeq and Chip-Seq methodologies, and we are continuously striving to broaden our skill base.

As our team comprises members of the NHS diagnostic labs and University research staff, we are able to generate data with a full audit trail to NHS diagnostic standards while simultaneously proving a flexible environment that allows us to rapidly respond to new developments in your research field.

For further information please visit the NGS webpage

Proteomics

Please visit the Clinical and Biomedical Proteomics Group webpage

Research Tissue Banks

Leeds University is a founding member of the Breast Cancer Campaign Tissue Bank.  For more information, please visit the webpage.

Realtime PCR

Currently the Real Time Facility comprises two work UV work stations (complete with designated Gilson’s and multichannels) for PCR plate preparation, two ABI real time machines (7500 and a 7900HT), and a specialist centrifuge for loading Taqman Low Density Array (TLDA) plates.  The ABI 7900HT has a 96 well and 384 well blocks, and the capacity to run TaqMan® low density micro-fluidic cards (TLDA).   The 7500 can only run 96 well plates. The Facility supplies the plates/optical seals for both machines and tips (if required).  Users are charged per run as a contribution to the service contracts and calibration kits.

GCLP Clinical Sample Processing

Please visit the Clinical and Biomedical Proteomics Group webpage 

Disease Registry Datasets

Click here for more information on the following datasets:

  • Yorkshire Specialist Register of Cancer in Children and Young People
  • Yorkshire Register of Diabetes in Children and Young Adults
  • Paediatric Intensive Care audit network (PICANet)
  • Yorkshire Congenital Anomalies Register.

Data Management Group (DMG)

The Data Management Group (DMG) in the Leeds Institute of Cardiovascular and Metabolic Medicine, in conjunction with OneIT, operates the Secure Electronic Environment for Data (SEED) facility, which is a secure data management infrastructure. This allows for safe storage and access to patient-identifiable data, subject to individual consent or the relevant approval to set aside consent. The facility allows secure remote data entry and reporting over the web and a safe environment on-campus for record linkage, processing and statistical analysis. Data in the facility is clustered for resilience, backed-up nightly and can be encrypted if required.

The facility is currently used to underpin a range of biomedical and health research undertaken in the School of Medicine and more widely. DMG is managed by Mr Thomas Fleming MCITP and academic leadership is provided by Dr Paul Baxter.