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Research Institute Core Facilities & Resources

There are over a dozen scientific core facilities at the SickKids Research Institute (RI). These core facilities provide researchers across the research community, internal and external to SickKids, access to specialized technical platforms, scientific expertise, and highly skilled personnel to enhance the scope and quality of their health research.

Operated on a cost recovery model, these facilities offer state-of-the-art instrumentation, consultation, and research design services that are typically too specialized or costly for individual laboratories to maintain.  

World-class facilities for your research

Enhance the scope and quality of your research. Conduct your studies in a world-class setting equipped with new technologies and infrastructure – check out our facilities below and learn what our distinct research design services can offer you.

 

Take a tour

biological samples

Analytical Facility for Bioactive Molecules (AFBM)

The Analytical Facility for Bioactive Molecules (AFBM) offers a range of services for researchers interested in quantitative and qualitative analysis of biological samples. Services include the analysis of drugs, metabolites, lipids, amino acids, and other small molecules by chromatography and mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS, GC-MS, IR-MS, GC and HPLC).

Cytometry brain image

SickKids-UHN Flow and Mass Cytometry Facility (FMCF)

The Flow and Mass Cytometry Facility (FMCF) provides academic and corporate clients access to several state-of-the-art analytical flow cytometers and high-speed cell sorting services. FMCF also offers comprehensive training and education, as well as expert consultation services, to help users leverage our technology to elevate their research.

Nanoscale Biomedical Imaging Facility

The Nanoscale Biomedical Imaging Facility provides microscopy services to scientists throughout Toronto and around the world. The Centre combines state-of-the-art equipment and technical expertise in a user-friendly environment.

Imaging Facility

The Imaging Facility provides a full range of biological imaging solutions for life sciences research. The facility contains a wide array of the latest technologies in biological imaging, which are available to all researchers on a user-cost basis.

Neuroscience

The Research MEG Facility

The Research Magnetoencephalography (MEG) Facility provides scientists access to a non-invasive functional neuroimaging technique that allows investigation of human brain activity on a millisecond timescale. 

The Research MRI Facility

The Research MRI Facility provides a wide range of human and animal-model magnetic resonance (MR) imaging capabilities to Toronto-area scientists. Imaging is performed on a Siemens 3T PrismaFit system.

Scientist conducting lab work

Structural & Biophysical Core Facility

The Structural & Biophysical Core (SBC) Facility is a shared instrument facility specializing in biophysical methods for investigating biomolecular structure, dynamics, stability, and interactions.

Scientists talking

The Centre for Applied Genomics (TCAG)

The Centre for Applied Genomics (TCAG) is a hub for groundbreaking research in genomics, including service and training support for academic, government, and private sector scientists worldwide.

Scientists collaborating

The Centre for Computational Medicine (CCM)

The Center for Computational Medicine (CCM) provides scientists and clinicians at SickKids with computational expertise, including High Performance Computing resources, Bioinformatics Analysis consulting and software development. The CCM also works with biological/medical and computational scientists at SickKids to identify appropriate collaborators.

Genomics; DNA sequencing

The Centre for Phenogenomics (TCP)

The Centre for Phenogenomics (TCP) is a centralized, state-of-the-art national research facility. TCP’s animal resources, model production, clinical phenotyping, infection and inflammation, imaging, pathology, and cryopreservation and recovery services are available to researchers worldwide.

Zebrafish Genetics and Disease Models Facility

The Zebrafish Genetics and Disease Models Facility provides a pipeline from human disease modeling to drug discovery using zebrafish as a model system.

TCP Mouse Mutant Repository (CMMR)

Located at The Centre for Phenogenomics, the CMMR provides access to a range of services, including publicly-available mouse lines and ES cells in its repository.

Molecular analysis

SickKids Proteomics, Analytics Robotics & Chemical Biology Centre (SPARC) - Molecular Analysis

SPARC applies modern technologies, including mass spectrometry and amino acid analysis, to categorize biological systems on a molecular level.

Drug discovery research

SickKids Proteomics, Analytics Robotics & Chemical Biology Centre (SPARC) - Drug Discovery

Drug discovery at SPARC includes high-throughput screening, high-content screening, Lentivirus and molecular archives.

Research equipment database

The Research Institute’s Equipment Database gives researchers access to over 3000 pieces of top-level research equipment used across SickKids’ labs and programs. Resource and knowledge sharing fosters collaboration amongst our research community, helping researchers view and advance projects from every perspective. 

Navigating the database

  • Search equipment by keywords. (i.e. cell counter, microscope, cryostat, etc.) 
  • Filter by floor or program 
  • Important: Always request permission from the primary contact through email first 
  • For a comprehensive search result (e.g. full equipment by floor, PI, lab, etc.), please contact Nancy Silva-Gagliardi or Craig Urekar.

Search equipment database

SickKids research databases

Access some of the largest and most comprehensive databases used by research communities at SickKids and around the globe to further the quality and scope of their health research.

The Database of Genomic Variants (DGV) provides a comprehensive summary of structural variations in the human genome. The database only represents structural variation identified in healthy control samples. The DGV’s useful catalog of control data is used in studies aiming to correlate genomic variation with phenotypic data. The database is continuously updated with new data from peer reviewed research studies, and is maintained by The Centre for Applied Genomics at SickKids.

Visit the DGV website

Documents mutations in the CFTR gene, and doubles as a resource for the international cystic fibrosis genetics research community. 

View CF Mutation Database

A repository of DNA samples for future research aimed at identifying the genes that cause congenital heart disease, and to develop better ways to diagnose, prevent and treat heart disease in children and adults. 

View Labatt Biobank

Along with the shRNA archive, these are two of the different database resources provided by the SickKids Proteomics, Analytics, Robotics & Chemical Biology Centre (SPARC).

Visit the SPARC BioCentre

Four hospitals, one goal. This central virtual registry facilitates postings and annotations of available samples from all CNS tumour cases across four Toronto University Hospitals: SickKids, St. Michael's, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, and UHN. 

Learn about the Brain Tumour Bank Network

A part of a research program in paediatric health economic methods, this regularly updated database contains thousands of citations. 

Learn about the PEDE Project

Meet our Researchers

Meet the scientists and clinicians working at SickKids.

Research Integrity

SickKids actively promotes a culture of research integrity, providing integrity education and resources to staff and collaborators.

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Clinical Research Services

Clinical Research Services supports study teams and quality clinical research by providing tools, templates, education, facilities and more.

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