Molecular Genomics Core

The Molecular Genomics Core facility offers researchers access to state-of-the-art genomics technology platforms, providing service and expertise in conducting genomics experiments.

DNA and RNA are molecules made up of a four-letter genetic code (nucleotides), a principle that is conserved across all living organisms. The human genome, encompassing the entire genetic code, comprises approximately three million nucleotide letters; each person has two copies, one copy inherited from each parent.

Genomic technologies allow researchers to decode or count specific DNA and RNA molecules to find differences that exist between normal and diseased cells. As cancer is a genetic disease caused by mutations that are either inherited or acquired during life, genomic technologies are extremely powerful tools for discovering mutations in genes implicated in cancer.

These discoveries are being translated into new diagnostic and prognostic tests, and are used to predict whether an individual will respond to a specific therapy. Such applications are enabling a more personalised treatment of cancer that increases patient survival and reduces the toxicity of cancer treatment on normal cells and tissues.

Research capabilities

The Molecular Genomics Core works with researchers and clinicians to establish the best possible approach for any genomics experiment. It offers expertise on a variety of off-the-shelf products and implements or customizes new protocols when needed.

The Molecular Genomics Core operates two major platforms: Illumina Sequencing and NanoString nCounter.

  • Illumina Sequencing System

The Core houses the Illumina NextSeq500 and the Illumina MiSeq, acquired through a prestigious ACRF grant and through generous donations from Peter Mac’s donor community. These instruments are used for a wide variety of experiments including tumour profiling with targeted gene-panels, full transcriptome sequencing, epigenomics applications such as ChIP-seq, CRISPR-sequencing and biomarker discovery.

  • NanoString nCounter Analysis System

The NanoString nCounter Analysis System enables the rapid and reliable analysis of nucleic acids at single-molecule resolution. The platform is mainly used for the study of differential gene expression in panels of genes defined by tumour stream. This technology tolerates the use of small amounts of input material and the use of DNA/RNA from archival formalin-fixed, paraffin embedded (FFPE) samples.

Contact information and facility use

Use of the facility is available to external users by fee-for-service agreement, subject to availability.

For further information about booking the Molecular Genomics Core facility, please contact us.

Facility staff


Tim Semple 

Research assistants

Stuart Craig

Hugo Saunders

Research officers

Amanda Lee (Laboratory Operations)

Sara Alaei

David Yoannidis


[email protected]