Facilities & resources

Leads: Susan Ring, Alix Groom, Matt Goodwin

A major focus of IEU activities is the integration of omic measures (genomic, epigenomic, transcriptomic and metabolomic) into epidemiological investigations. To support this we have established facilities and services to reliably and efficiently generate and handle the large data sets that we use. The IEU is supported by three complementary core facilities.


Analysis of biological samples from population-based studies is supported by the Core Biobanking Facility. We currently curate over a million biological samples from a variety of population based cohorts and this will be extended to offer provision to other cohort studies (eg the Born in Bradford Study, see Programme 5) to our laboratories. The efficient management and effective integration of biobanking activities will be fundamental to the success of the scientific programmes.


A new metabolomics facility has been established following substantial investment by the University of Bristol in a NMR platform that has been widely applied for metabolomic analysis in large population samples. This facility is overseen by Prof Mika Ala-Korpela, Professor of Computational Medicine, who has led development of this platform.

Functional genetics

A functional molecular genetics laboratory will be set up to provide the facility to characterize observational associations in an experimental setting. This core facility will interface closely with the Biobanking laboratory facilities and bioinformatics components of the Unit. A core of molecular genetic techniques will be established in this laboratory and will provide a training environment for early-career researchers to gain first-hand experience of experimental techniques, thus extending the inter-disciplinary training opportunities available to them.

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