Functional Genomics Centre

FGC location shot - Jeffrey Cheah Biomedical Centre

Access cutting-edge CRISPR technology to create and improve world-leading cancer medicines.

Who we are

We deliver pooled CRISPR screens, in collaboration with leading researchers, that identify and validate new drug targets and approaches that will change the cancer landscape. 

Our state-of-the-art institute leverages the combined global strengths of Cancer Research UK’s world-class scientific network and AstraZeneca’s oncology drug discovery and development experience to drive scientific innovation. 

We identify innovative approaches to tackle traditionally hard-to-treat cancers by deepening our understanding of key drivers of cancer and resistance mechanisms.

The key to our success is researcher autonomy. We empower you to explore bold new ideas without restraint. 

We work with AstraZeneca, sharing resources and expertise, but all Cancer Research Horizons projects are independent and resulting data will remain unencumbered.

What we offer

Our team of CRISPR experts have the skills and technology to make your project a success.

We can run pooled CRISPR screens, supporting everything from initial assay design, Cas9 cell line generation, to bioinformatic analysis and interpretation of the screen data results.

We use an optimised CRISPR platform for pooled CRISPR knockout and activation screening that enables the identification of genome-wide genetic vulnerabilities. Our specialist CRISPR screen areas:

  • essentiality and drug gene-interaction  
  • primary immune cells 
  • co-culture  
  • 3D models 

Our cutting-edge research tools include:

Pooled sgRNA screening

  • Assay development including transduction optimisation.
  • Generation of Cas9 expressing cell lines.
  • Screening execution, genomic DNA extraction, and NGS sample preparation.

Bioinformatics and data analysis

  • Cloud deployed analysis pipeline for bioinformatic analysis of the screen results and data interpretation.

Pooled sgRNA library cloning

      • Custom made sgRNA library production.
      • Virus packaging and transduction.

      Technology development 

      Our active technology development programme evaluates new CRISPR technologies, enabling us to perform more complex CRISPR screens and identify disease-relevance drug targets. Our development areas include:

      • improving Cas9 and gRNA vectors  
      • increasing screen phenotype complexity   
      • screening in advanced disease-relevant models  

      Collaborate with us

      If your research could benefit from access to novel, state-of-the-art CRISPR technology, we would love to work with you to progress your research. Our expert team can help you plan your project to give you the best opportunity for success. 


      Proposals are reviewed every two months, the next deadline is 14 August.


      To access the Functional Genomics Centre's screening capabilities you should be one of:

      • A researcher based in a Cancer Research UK institute.
      • A Cancer Research UK grant holder.

      If you are unsure of your eligibility, please contact us at [email protected]

      How to apply

      Please get in touch with Beatrice Lana to discuss your project ideas and submit your application.

      Jo Morris, Professor of Molecular Genetics at the University of Birmingham

      Working with the FGC was very straightforward. We appreciated the clear, high-quality communication, enabling us to always know what stage the project was at and to discuss findings on completion.

      Contact us

      Beatrice Lana

      Strategic Alliance Executive

      [email protected]