Genomics Facility

Located on the St. James’s University Hospital campus we operate from the Clinical Sciences Building where we have been based since 2009. During this time, the Facility has gained extensive experience developing and implementing emerging genomics technologies for the analysis of both DNA and RNA. To-date we have installed and commissioned the running of more than 10 new-to-market sequencers. We currently house and operate Illumina MiSeq, NextSeq 2000 and NovaSeq 6000 instruments. We also have extensive experience running long-read nanopore sequencers including MinION and PromethION (P48) devices.

Our close working relationship with NHS staff has embedded the importance of rigorous quality assurance into our daily processes. We are proud to generate data with a comprehensive audit trail, to diagnostic standards.

We have worked on a wide range of organisms including specimens from human, mouse, rat, bacteria, fungi, and plants.

Library Preparation

Depending on user requirements, we can either sequence customer-prepared libraries or provide a complete library preparation service. The Facility has a proven track record; our core workflows include amplicon, exome, whole genome, ChIP-Seq and microbiome (16S) sequencing. For RNA we can undertake rRNA or globin depletion and poly(A) selection prior to library preparation. We are also able to generate microRNA libraries.

Aside from commercial solutions, we are willing and able to assist with the development and setup of novel “proof-of-principle” workflows. Whether you require assistance designing and refining your experimental approach, or need tips on best practice, please get in touch. We’re always happy to help.


For short-read Illumina sequencing the selected reagent cartridge defines the instrument’s yield and run configuration (single or paired-end). Depending on a user’s experimental requirements, all available kit types can be supplied. We typically generate paired end 100 bp or 150 bp reads. Instrument specifications can be reviewed here, please contact us for further details. For long-read nanopore sequencing there are fewer flowcell configuration options to consider.

For users that intend to generate their own libraries we host an extensive range of ancillary devices. This equipment includes an Agilent Bioanalyser 2100, Tapestation (2200 & 4200) and Femto Pulse, Covaris E220, BluePippin (Sage Science), FLUOstar Omega (BMG Labtech), Bio-Rad ddPCR QX200 droplet generator and Eppendorf 5301 vacuum concentrator. Please contact us for information about pricing and/or training.



Sequence data is typically returned in FASTQ.gz format for downstream data processing. University of Leeds researchers often use the ARC3 or ARC4 high-performance computing cluster. For researchers with little or no experience of sequence-based analysis we can make introductions to possible local or international collaborators.

The Genomics Facility has been involved in the design and development of numerous bioinformatic applications across a range of medical and biological fields. For a discussion about potential future programs please contact Dr Ian Carr who leads this activity.

The Facility also works with LeedsOMICs, a virtual institute that has expertise in the processing and interpretation of large-scale “omics” datasets. Please contact Elton Vasconcelos for costed bioinformatics support.


If a sequencing run fails due to an instrumentation issue (as judged by the manufacturer’s technical support team) the samples will be re-run free-of-charge. Unfortunately, refunds cannot be issued if a dataset fails to meet customer expectations. If a customer prepares their own libraries a quality control step will be performed. We cannot be held responsible for the outcome or results from libraries that are assessed to be of low quality or inappropriate for sequencing.

Remaining sample is made available for collection at the customer’s expense. Unless otherwise stated on the Genomics Facility submission form, samples will be destroyed 6 months after sequencing data has been returned. Under no circumstances will we be responsible for the cost of producing the submitted sample.
Data will be available for collection for 3 months following sequencing; please ensure it is downloaded promptly.


The Facility’s pricing structure is comparable to other academic institutions and commercial service providers. Please contact us to discuss your experimental requirements and receive a comprehensive quote. (If payment is made from a non-University of Leeds account V.A.T. will be added.)


The Genomics Facility is located on Level 6 of the Clinical Sciences Building at St. James’s University Hospital. For enquiries please contact either Dr Christopher Watson, Morag Raynor or Carolina Lascelles.

Facility tours are available by prior arrangement.

We look forward to working with you.