The Hartwell Center for Biotechnology is a unique integration of high-throughput biotechnology resources, designed with the mission to provide St. Jude investigators state-of-the-art tools for biomedical discovery. Services include DNA Sequencing, Genome Sequencing, DNA Genotyping, Macromolecular Synthesis, and Microarray Analysis. The Hartwell Center is supported by the Cancer Center, investigator program funds, and by ALSAC. Services are highly cost-effective and chargeback fees are designed to recover only the cost of reagents

Biorepository Overview
Biorepository Overview


 The Hartwell Center provides extraordinary breadth of support across the St. Jude research community. Virtually all research laboratories utilize at least one of the services. The Hartwell Center also provides highly specialized services that cannot be reproduced readily within a research laboratory. The staff has a unique blend of skills across a diverse range of biotechnology platforms, protocol methods, instruments, and software systems. Their engagement and dedicated expertise are essential to the outstanding quality of services. The Hartwell Center provides access to biotechnologies that accelerate  the pace of scientific discovery. Publications supported by this resource have a median impact factor >10, illustrating the significance of those research findings. These biotechnologies support novel discovery within   the molecular processes contributing to pediatric cancers, as well as those responsible for normal development and response to infectious diseases.

quotation mark icon

One area in which St. Jude is so far ahead of everyone is the application and ease with which next- generation sequencing projects can be done, and new technologies can be adopted.

Paul Thomas, Member


  • Sanger DNA Sequencing
  • Genome Sequencing
    • WGS, WGBS, WES, RNA-Seq, ChIP-seq, PCR amplicon sequencing
  • DNA Genotyping Analysis
    • PowerPlex Fusion STR assay, SNP detection, fragment size analysis, copy number detection, InDel  screening
  • Macromolecular Synthesis
    • Standard and nonstandard peptide synthesis
    • Lactam bridge, cyclic, branched chain, phosphorylated, heavy isotope labeled, fluorescent-labeled, and biotinylated peptide synthesis
    • Peptoid and peptide nucleic acid synthesis
    • Peptide coupling to BSA and KLH
    • Hydrocarbon stapled peptide synthesis
  • Functional Genomics
    • Analysis of nucleic acids using custom and commercial microarrays
      • mRNA, miRNA, comparative genomic hybridization analysis
    • Enrichment of nucleic acid targets for analysis by NGS
      • Illumina TruSeq, Agilent SureSelect, Nimblegen SeqCap
  • Affymetrix and Illumina Microarray Analysis
    • Commercial and custom analyses using Illumina, Agilent, and Nimblegen platforms
    • SNP and Copy Number Analysis, gene expression, CpG methylation analysis

*Single cell sequencing efforts extend across the institution. While instrumentation is often housed within user departments, the Hartwell Center supports development, optimization, and analysis of these technologies.


  • DNA Sequencing and Genotyping Analysis
    • (2) Applied Biosystems 3730xl DNA Analyzers
    • Applied Biosysems 3500xl DNA Analyzer
    • Perkin Elmer Janus liquid handling robot
    • (11) Applied Biosystems Veriti thermal cyclers
  • Genome Sequencing
    • Pacific Biosciences (PacBio) Sequel IIe
    • Diagenode Megaruptor 3 DNA shearing system
    • Agilent FemtoPulse fragment analyzer(2) Hamilton STAR liquid handling robots
    • (2) Hamilton Nimbus liquid handling robots
    • Covaris LE220 96 shearing system
    • Agilent 96 capillary fragment analyzer
    • Spectromax i3 microplate reader
  • Illumina Sequencing Systems
    • (2) NovaSeq6000 genome production instruments
  • Mid-range NextSeq550 system
    • (5) MiSeq system
  • iSeq system
  • Dedicated clean room for library preparation
  • Macromolecular Synthesis
  • Protein Technologies SymphonyX 24 column peptide synthesizers
    • Protein Technologies Chorus 6 column temperature-controlled peptide synthesizer
    • CEM Liberty Blue microwave peptide synthesizer
  • Waters 1525 preparative HPLC systems with UV/VIS, fluorescence detectors
  • Waters Alliance 2695 analytical HPLC systems with UV/VIS, fluorescence detectors
    • Bruker Microflex MALDI-TOF mass spectrometer
  • Functional Genomics
    • Agilent High Resolution microarray scanner
  • Agilent Bioanalyzers
    • Nanodrop spectrophotometer
    • Biorad CFX384 QPCR system
  • MJ Research Tetrad Thermocyclers
  • Affymetrix and Illumina Microarray Analysis
    • Microarray: (3) Complete Affymetrix GeneChip cartridge analysis systems
    • Illumina: iScan bead array scanner, Tecan Freedom EVO liquid robot
    • Custom: Agilent High resolution scanner, hybridization stations

Hartwell by the numbers: 


DNA samples sequenced annually


samples processed for genome sequencing annually


peer-reviewed publication contributions


collaborative partnerships with principal investigators


Geoffrey Neale

Geoffrey Neale, PhD

Director, Harwell Center