Research Core Facilities provide access to highly specialized services, equipment, and staff that would otherwise be too expensive for an individual laboratory to support.
Below is an expandable list of the HMS Quad Department Core Facilities and contact information. While most Cores are publicly available, some are required by their sponsors to limit access and to differentiate pricing. Policies regarding services, access, fees and prioritization vary by core and by institution. Please contact each core facility directly for more information.
List of Core Facilities
Analytical Chemistry Core
In the Analytical Chemistry Core at HMS there is an Agilent 6530 QTOF LCMS and an Agilent 6130 Single Quad LCMS available for use by investigators who can operate them independently, running their own samples and interpreting the results.
Core Director - Matt Henke
Admin Contact - Katrina Rudnicki
Core Website - http://iccb.med.harvard.edu/analytical-chemistry-core
Array Tomography Core
Array tomography is a newly developed imaging technique that offers multiplex, ultra-high resolution volumetric imaging with depth-independent immunofluorescent staining.
Core Director - Michelle Ocana
Core Contact - Mahmoud El-Rifai
Website - https://nif.hms.harvard.edu/array-tomography-core/
Biopolymer Next/Gen Sequencing Facility
Core Instruments and AB 3730xl - Sanger DNA Sequencing and Fragment Analysis;Life Technologies Quant Studio7 - QPCR Assays;Agilent Bioanalyzer & TapeStation - DNA and RNA Quality Assessment; Hamilton StarPlus Robot - Automation Services; Illumina HiSeq2500, NextSeq 500 & MiSeq - Next-gen Sequencing and Wafergen Apollo 324 Library Construction Services; Fluidigm C1 Single Cell Autoprep - Single Cell Analysis; Luminex LS200 - XMap Assays; QiaCube - Sample Preparation (DNA and RNA); and an Oligonucleotide Ordering Program; Reagents and Supplies Stock Room Program. A Comprehensive web based Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS), provides facility users with access to order services, supplies, retrieve data, review invoices and make payments online.
Center for Macromolecular Interactions
The BCMP Center for Macromolecular Interactions (CMI) is a resource for the characterization of macromolecules and their interactions. The CMI provides training, scientific consultation, and access to shared biophysical equipment, including surface plasmon resonance (SPR), biolayer interferometry (BLI), isothermal titration calorimetry ITC), differential scanning fluorimetry (DSF), circular dichroism (CD), and multi-angle light scattering (SEC-MALS).
Cell Biology Microscopy Facility
Conventional Electron Microscopy Facility
The Harvard Medical School EM Facility is a fee-for-service core facility open to researchers in the HMS Quadrangle and the Longwood Medical area. The Facility provides services and supervision in Transmission Electron Microscopy.
The Harvard Cryo-Electron Microscopy Center for Structural Biology is a joint effort of Harvard Medical School, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston Children’s Hospital, and Massachusetts General Hospital to provide state-of-the-art cryo-EM instrumentation and expertise for the Harvard structural biology community. This user facility will offer consultation and training by staff in specimen preparation, microscope operation, image acquisition, and data analysis. New vitrification devices are available for use and we are gradually bringing new users online for the Talos Arctica and Titan Krios microscopes as they become available.
Core Website - https://cryoem.hms.harvard.edu/
DF/HCC DNA Resource Core
The DF/HCC DNA Resource Core was established in the spring of 1999 to meet a growing need for DNA sequencing services at a cost that is affordable for academic labs. The services that we offer to users within the Dana Farber Harvard Cancer Center and the broader scientific community include DNA sequencing for large- and small-scale projects and plasmid distribution. Our highest priorities are quality assurance, user support and timely request fulfillment.
DF/HCC Rodent Histopathology Core
The Rodent Histopathology Core is a Dana Farber/Harvard Cancer Center facility that is based at HMS. Services that the Core provides focus mainly on mouse histopathology, and include necropsy, phenotyping of organs and tissues, dissection and tissue processing, and one-on-one consultation. The facility also generates unstained paraffin and frozen sections to be used for immunohistochemistry. The core provides individual and group training sessions for postdoctoral fellows and graduate students on the development, phenotyping and characterization of animal models of cancers.
Core Faculty Director - Peter Howley
Core Manager - Li Zhang
Core Administrator - Lauri Wyner
Core Website - http://www.dfhcc.harvard.edu/research/core-facilities/rodent-histopathology/
Drosophila RNAi Screening Center
The mission of the DRSC is to provide the community with RNAi reagent libraries and a screening platform for high-throughput screens in Drosophila cultured and primary cells. Also included at the DRSC is the Transgenic RNAi Project (TRiP). The mission of the TRiP is to generate validated in vivo fly stocks for tissue-specific gene knockdown in whole animals. We provide access to information, protocols, data and software tools via our DRSC and TRiP website and underlying FlyRNAi database. The DRSC also provides access to state-of-the-art instrumentation for high-throughput, high-content fluorescence confocal imaging.
East Quad NMR Facility
The East Quad NMR Faciltiy (EQNMR) is a core facility for Bio-molecular NMR spectroscopy. The EQNMR Lab houses state-of-the-art 400, 500, 600, and 700MHz NMR systems capable of conducting multi-dimensional experiments in support of research on structure elucidation of natural products, medicinal chemistry, fragment-based drug discovery, metabolomics, and protein structure and dynamics. Training is provided to enable investigators to run their own experiments in a highly automated, user- friendly environment.
Harvard Chan Bioinformatics Core
In an effort to provide bioinformatics analysis services and training to the HMS Community, the HMS Tools and Technology Program has provided additional support and resources to the HSPH Bioinformatics Core (HBC). HBC provides expertise in areas such as array analysis, next-gen sequencing (NGS) and functional analysis. Their NGS support includes epigenetics, transcriptomics and re-sequencing studies. HBC works together with research computing groups on all aspects of data management.
Harvard NeuroDiscovery Center Enhanced Neuroimaging Core
The Core provides access to advanced confocal, multi-photon and live cell imaging microscopes and specializes in various forms of fluorescence, brightfield, DIC (Differential Interference Contrast) and live cell imaging. The facility offers users comprehensive service on confocal imaging, protocol design and microscopy training as well as digital image analysis, including consultation and custom macro program (ImageJ and Metamorph) design.
Core Director - Dan Tom
Core Website - http://neurodiscovery.harvard.edu/enhanced-neuroimaging-core
ICCB-Longwood Screening Facility
The ICCB-Longwood Screening Facility assists investigators in carrying out high-throughput screens of chemical and RNAi libraries to identify new tools for biological research. The ICCB-Longwood compound collection is continuously growing. Over 500,000 compounds are currently available for screening, including > 12,000 'known bioactive' compounds, many of which have been characterized in animal models or in the clinic. Multiple human and mouse whole-genome siRNA libraries, as well as miRNA mimic and inhibitor libraries, are available for RNAi screening. Laboratory automation equipment is also available for use by the community for non-screening projects. The facility employs a staff-assisted screening model.
Image and Data Analysis Core
IDAC provides image data analysis services to individual labs and core facilities at Harvard Medical School, including the ICCB-Longwood Screening Facility (ICCB-L), the Drosophila RNAi Screening Center (DRSC), and the Nikon Imaging Center (NIC).
Image Management Core
The Harvard Medical School Image Management Core is a new service of HMS Research IT Solutions to help researchers manage image data and metadata. The IMC was created in response to the growing complexity and difficulty of managing research image data. The first major offering of the IMC will be a shared installation of the OMERO image management platform. The HMS IT department will install and maintain an OMERO server for use by on-quad HMS researchers. This effort builds upon the successful use of the OMERO platform by the HMS LINCS project. Initial funding for this comes from the Tools and Technology Committee, HMS IT, and the Harvard Program in Therapeutic Science (HiTS).
Immune Imaging Core
Immunology Flow Cytometry Facility
The Immunology Department’s Flow Cytometry core facility provides cutting edge instruments and expert advice for flow cytometry to all researchers across HMS and beyond. With three sorters, three analyzers, and availability at late hours, we can offer our services for a wide variety of cytometry applications. Most recent instrumentation include a new BD FACSymphony A5 (up to 28 parameters), or high speed 6 way cell sorting on the 6-laser MoFlo Astrios.
Core Director - Chad Araneo
Core Website - http://immdiv.hms.harvard.edu/FlowCore/Flowcore.html
Immunology Imaging Core
The Division of Immunology Imaging Core offers optical microscopes, open to use to investigators in Harvard Medical School and the Harvard affiliated hospitals and institutions. The facility currently has two Olympus Confocal laser scanning microscopes (Olympus Fluoview FV1000 and Olympus FV3000) and a Nikon Ti-Eclipse Fluorescence microscope.
Core Director - Paula Montero-Llopis
Website - http://immdiv.hms.harvard.edu/ImagingCore/Imaging.html
The HMS Microfluidics Facility aims to make the tools of microfabrication and microfluidics available to all HMS users. Microfluidics has the potential to do for biology what microprocessors have done for computational sciences by integrating complex chemical and biological processes into one chip, facilitating the study of complex biological systems.
Core Director - Calixto Saenz
Admin Contact - Barb Grant
Core Website - https://hms.harvard.edu/departments/microfluidicsmicrofabrication
MicRoN: Microscopy Resources on the North Quad
The MicRoN (Microscopy Resources on the North Quad) offers dedicated expertise in imaging and experimental design in light microscopy and well as technical support and basic maintenance of our microscopes. It primarily serves MBIB and Genetics departments but it is open to other Quad Departments.Our core includes widefield, scanning and scanning confocal microscopes.
Mouse Behavior Core
The Mouse Behavior Core (MBC) is a fee-for-service core providing a 3,000 sq. ft. state-of-the-art mouse behavior research facility. It is jointly supported by Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women's Hospital. This is a full service facility, providing training and guidance to investigators on best research practices, developing new tests, equipment and procedures. The staff promotes the highest standards of mouse behavior research.
Mouse Imaging Core
The HMS Mouse Imaging Core provides researchers with in-vivo mouse imaging capabilities for endpoint and longitudinal studies using either luminescent or fluorescent reporters in an animal biosafety level 2 environment. Staff from ICCB-Longwood oversee the IVIS (In-Vivo Imaging System) Lumina II mouse imager and its use, while the IVIS room is operated and maintained by HCCM (Harvard Center for Comparative Medicine). Staff members provide access to and training on the imager and data analysis computers, while HCCM oversees all room and animal operations including facility access, safety training and orientation, animal transfers and husbandry, and protocol approval.
Nascent Transcriptomics Core
The mission of the Nascent Transcriptomics Core (NTC) is to offer the community a resource for the analysis of nascent transcription, providing new insights into gene regulation and enabling highly-sensitive identification of regulatory regions such as enhancers.
We offer consultation on experimental design as well as library construction services for Start-seq, PRO-seq, and TT-seq. In addition, the NTC looks forward to expanding these offerings as we develop and optimize new nascent RNA sequencing methods in partnership with the HMS community.
Core Contact - Seth Goldman
Neurobiology Imaging Facility
Nikon Imaging Center at Harvard Medical School
The NIC is a core light microscopy facility developed in partnership with Nikon Instruments Inc. and Micro Video Instruments Inc. The NIC@HMS maintains a wide range of light microscopy stations, including laser scanning confocal, spinning disk confocal, TIRF, STORM super-resolution, FRAP/photoactivation and more. All users are trained to use the equipment; no prior imaging experience is necessary. The NIC@HMS also offers an extensive educational program, including hands-on workshops for theoretical and practical training on light microscopy techniques.
Research Computing manages the O2 and Orchestra High Performance Compute Cluster environments, with over 12000 compute cores. HPC enables researchers to scale up their analyses for maximum efficiency and productivity. The RC team provides infrastructure support for research web and database applications. RC also boasts a consulting service, providing advice on the best use of resources, implementing analyses, and conducting user training in cluster usage, basic programming languages, and statistical analysis.
Research Imaging Solutions for Scientific Communication
Preparing images for inclusion in scientific communication has long been a time-consuming, confusing and often frustrating endeavor. Research Imaging Solutions works to identify ways to streamline image preparation so researchers can maximize their time at the bench, writing grants and developing discoveries.
Research Imaging Solutions services are available to all Harvard, HMS, HSDM, HSPH and affiliated hospital employees. Expertise can be accessed in a way that acknowledges each kind of learning style: one-on-one consulting; workshop and seminars and online easy-to-follow guides and recipes. The accessibility and convenience of this Quad-centered service is supplemented by substantial web-based assistance at it.med.harvard.edu/ris, making Research Imaging Solutions a 24/7 resource.
RIS skills training is based on the unique ways that researchers use proprietary scientific applications, Microsoft Office and a variety graphics programs to create, acquire and edit images that are included in grant applications, journal articles and presentations to the scientific community. Half-day workshops are free and address the specific imaging and presentation needs of researchers. Lunchtime Seminars are presented at no charge and cover topics including poster making, proper PowerPoint techniques and Photoshop tricks. Customized small group and one-on-one training is also available by contacting Research Imaging Solutions.
Core Director - Beth Beighlie
Core Website - https://hms.harvard.edu/departments/hms-information-technology/research-imaging
Research Instrumentation Core Facility
The Research Instrumentation Core Facility enables the development of new scientific instruments in order to further research at Harvard Medical School and affiliated institutions. The facility provides consultations on the design of hardware or software, purchasing decisions, and assistance with implementation. The staff will work with researchers to develop and fabricate customized electronic, optical, and mechanical devices, as well as software interfaces for these devices. Furthermore, the facility provides tools and workshop space for authorized researchers to design and prototype their own instruments. The facility is staffed by a full-time Neurobiology device engineer and a staff engineer.
SBGrid Computing Core and Software Consortium
SBGrid Core team provides research computing support to 20 structural biology laboratories in Boston area. The SBGrid Consortium provides structural biologists worldwide with access to the computing resources they need to discover the shapes of the molecules of life. The Consortium includes X-ray crystallography, NMR and electron microscopy laboratories worldwide. Members share the costs of SBGrid's support services and gain access to a large collection of scientific applications and extensive computing resources.
Single Cell Core
This Core supports single cell sequencing and provides resources for sequencing the transcriptomes individual cells and provides scientific advising for optimal experimental design. The Core is partnering with the Harvard Chan Bioinformatics Core to offer support from experimental design through to data analysis.
Systems Biology FACS Facility
The Systems Biology FACS facility houses two state-of-the-art BD analyzers with high-throughput capability, a high-speed BD cell sorter with an automatic plate deposition unit, a Stratedigm analyzer with high-throughput capability, and both Mac and PC workstations for data analysis. Sorting services are offered through the facility, as well as instrument and software training. Instruments include a BD FACSCalibur (488nm/635nm; 4-color), BD SORP LSRII with HTS (405nm/488nm/594nm; 12-color), A Stratedigm S100EX with plate reader and liquid dispensing capabilities (405nm, 488nm, 561nm, and 640nm; 13 color), and a BD FACSAria IIu (405nm/488nm/633nm; 9-color). Data analysis software available at the facility includes ModFit, FlowJo, Diva 6.1.3, and CellQuestPro.
Systems Biology Microscopy Facility
(SBMF) is a core facility for light microscopy developed in partnership with Nikon Instruments Inc. and Micro Video Instruments Inc. The SBMF maintains laser scanning confocals, spinning disk confocals, a total internal fluorescence system, and other basic fluorescence and transmitted light microscopes. All users are offered training to use the equipment; no prior imaging experience is necessary.
Taplin Biological Mass Spectrometry Facility
Thermo Fisher Center for Multiplexed Proteomics
The Thermo Fisher Center offers proteome-wide protein expression profiling. The Center uses recently-introduced high resolution mass spectrometers (Orbitrap Fusion Tribrid) and isobaric tandem mass tags (TMT) to quantify protein expression from cells or tissues. Currently the tandem mass tag technology allows for the analysis of 6-10 samples within a single experiment. For example, protein expression in a cancer cell line can be profiled after nine drug treatments and compared to an untreated sample across >6,000 proteins. The services are provided to the HMS community as well as external users.
Transgenic Mouse Core
The Transgenic Mouse Core has all of the equipment necessary for generation of transgenic mice including a Nikon Diaphot microscope equipped with Nomarski Optics and Narishige micromanipulators for microinjections, Nikon surgical microscopes for egg isolation ad transfer, a sutter needle puller and a de Fonbbrune microforge. The facility maintains mice necessary for egg donors, egg recipients, and vasectomized males. This is a non-profit facility and charges are based upon anticipated mouse costs, maintenance of mice and equipment, purchase of necessary surgical supplies and chemicals, and personnel costs.
ES cell culture services have been offered for 15 years. Our staff carries out electroporation of targeting vectors into ES cells and provides investigators with DNA to identify ES cells carrying the desired recombination events. Staff then expand the appropriate ES cells for microinjection into blastocysts by the Transgenic Mouse Core.
In recent years, the core has expanded its list of services to include CRISPR injections and cryopreservation.