Find out more about the NHS North Thames Genomic Laboratory Hub

We are the NHS North Thames Genomic Laboratory Hub (NTGLH), one of seven genomic laboratory hubs in England responsible for providing genomic and genetic testing, including the start of whole genome sequencing, as part of the new Genomic Medicine Service in the NHS.

From 2020, genomic testing in the NHS is being provided through this single national testing network, built on consolidating and developing our existing genetic testing laboratory services. This will create a world class resource for the NHS and support the future Genomic Medicine Service. It will also support the delivery of the Government’s Life Sciences Strategy and the broader research and innovation agenda, building upon the NHS contribution to the 100,000 Genomes Project.

The seven Genomic Laboratory Hubs (GLHs), are each responsible for coordinating services for a particular part of the England. We are the North Thames GLH, led by Great Ormond Street NHS Foundation Trust, serving North London, and much of Essex and Hertfordshire.

The other six GLHs are:

  • Central and South Genomic Laboratory Hub led by Birmingham Women’s and Children NHS Foundation Trust
  • East Genomic Laboratory Hub led by Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
  • North West Genomic Laboratory Hub led by Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust
  • South East Genomic Laboratory Hub led by Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust
  • South West Genomic Laboratory Hub led by North Bristol NHS Trust
  • North East and Yorkshire Genomic Laboratory Hub led by The Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

The national hub and network model will not only improve patient access for genetic testing, but will also support the development of more personalised healthcare. The ultimate ambition is for patients with rare and inherited diseases and cancer to be diagnosed quicker than ever before to enable more appropriate, individualised treatment, no matter where in England they live. 

Who we are

We are North Thames GLH and will provide all core rare and inherited disease and cancer genomic testing services for the population of north, west and east London, and parts of Essex and Hertfordshire.

Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust

Barnet, Enfield and Haringey Mental Health NHS Trust

Barts Health NHS Trust

Basildon and Thurrock University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Camden and Islington NHS Foundation Trust

Central and North West London NHS Foundation Trust

Central London Community Healthcare NHS Trust

Chelsea and Westminster Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

East London NHS Foundation Trust

Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children NHS Foundation Trust

Hertfordshire Community NHS Trust

Hertfordshire Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust

Homerton University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust

London North West Healthcare NHS Trust

Mid Essex Hospital Services NHS Trust

Moorfields Eye Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

North East London NHS Foundation Trust

North Middlesex University Hospital NHS Trust

Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust

Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital NHS Trust

South Essex Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust

Southend University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust

Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust

The Hillingdon Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

The Princess Alexandra Hospital NHS Trust

The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust

The Whittington Hospital NHS Trust

University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust

West London Mental Health NHS Trust

Some other Trusts will be part of London North GLH for cancer samples only.

The North Thames GLH is a partnership between a number of Trusts who currently have genomic testing laboratories across North London. Led by Great Ormond Street NHS Foundation Trust, the partners include Barts Health NHS Trust, Imperial College Hospital and its partner laboratory North West London Pathology, The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust, University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and The Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust with its partner laboratory Health Services Laboratories, and The Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital. Other organisations who have genetic services and active genomic research laboratories, such as Moorfields Eye Hospital, will also contribute to the GLH.

One of the aims for the new Genomic Medicine Service is to re-organise laboratory services, to enable the provision of high quality, rapid testing. As such we will be looking to unify the majority of laboratory services into two main laboratories, one for rare disease and one for cancer. The laboratory for rare and inherited disease testing will be based on the Great Ormond Street Hospital site, and the consolidated cancer laboratory will be based at The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust site.

What we do

Rather than sending tests to individual labs across the country, as was done previously, those NHS Trusts in the North Thames area will send all genomic sequence diagnostic tests to the North Thames GLH.

In our Hub, we have two main laboratories. The one for Rare and Inherited Diseases is based at GOSH. For cancer, the main laboratory is based at The Royal Marsden Hospital (RMH).

The genomic work of North Thames is largely divided into two

1. Core Testing

This includes some testing for rare and inherited disease and most cancer testing. This core testing will be delivered by all seven GLHs in England.

For rare and inherited diseases: North Thames GLH will test for the more common conditions such as cystic fibrosis, haemochromatosis, familial hypercholesterolaemia, prenatal aneuploidy testing, Non Invasive Prenatal Diagnosis (NIPD) and inherited predisposition for common cancers (e.g. BRCA).

For cancer genomic testing:  all somatic (acquired) genomic tests on solid tumour and leukaemias are currently designated as core tests and will be delivered by all seven GLHs including London North.

2. Specialist testing for rare and inherited diseases.

Testing for specialist areas have been divided into 17 groups and these tests will be delivered by at least two GLHs with specialist expertise in these areas. This means that for some conditions we will be sending samples to other GLHs for testing, and other GLHs will also be sending us tests for other conditions. Tests requested for any patient in our geography will need to be sent to the NT GLH in the first instance and then we in the Hub will send on any tests that need to be done by another GLH.

North Thames GLH will be providing specialist testing for some other GLHs for the following conditions:

Hearing Loss




Rare Inherited cancer






All genomic tests available in the NHS Genomic Medicine Service are listed in the National Genomic Test Directory. This directory defines who is eligible for which test and which health professionals should request testing. It is divided into one directory for rare and inherited diseases and one for cancer. This means that all patients will have access to the tests they require regardless of they live in the country.

As the Genomic Medicine Service becomes established there will be a national ordering system but for now tests will continue to be requested as they have been in the past.

Our People

Get in touch with our team.


We welcome applications from everyone and we ensure that all applicants and employees are treated fairly and with respect.

Genomics Clinical Scientist at the North Thames Genomics Laboratory Hub

Job Reference: 271-MTT-3461427
Employer: Great Ormond Street Hospital
Location: Great Ormond Street Hospital

Grade: Band 7
Hours: Full time – 37.5 hours per week

Contract: Permanent
Salary: £47,154 – £52,936 per annum inclusive

Closing: 27/09/2021

Click here for more information and to apply

Applications are invited from State Registered Clinical Scientists in Genomics; scientists close to registration will also be considered.

The scientist will be joining the team at the North Thames Rare Disease Laboratory Hub at Great Ormond Street Hospital. We are seeking enthusiastic, self-motivated scientists with experience of clinical molecular genetic service delivery and a sound understanding of molecular techniques including variant assessment. Accomplished communication and organisational skills are required.

The successful candidate will support an area of our core, specialist or prenatal services dependent on experience. We support trained scientists who wish to adopt flexible and/or remote working patterns.

The Rare Disease Laboratory has an establishment of approximately 140 including technologists, clinical scientists, translational scientists, bioinformaticians and administrative support staff. Along with two Clinical Genetics teams we form a strategic Genetics Unit within the hospital and provide North London with a Regional Genetics Service serving a population of approximately 10 million. Having been awarded 11 specialisms in the NHSE Genomic Medicine Service the laboratory provides an in-house diagnostic service for cancer, molecular and cytogenetic testing in accordance with the NHS England Genomic Test Directory. Cytogenetic testing is provided for both prenatal and postnatal samples using SNP microarray, karyotyping, FISH, qPCR, QF PCR and MLPA. Molecular testing includes next generation sequencing and targeted tests. We are also engaged in the development and ramping up of the NHSE GMS Whole Genome Sequencing programme for our North Thames patients.

We are involved in a number of collaborative research and development projects with colleagues at the UCL Institute of Child Health and Institute of Neurology as part of the UCL Partners Academic Health Sciences Centre. We provide a DNA preparation and storage service in support of many of these projects.

Please be advised that:

The recruitment process for all admin and clerical roles at Bands 2-5 will be a two stage recruitment process whereby shortlisted candidates will undertake an online literacy, numeracy, ICT and typing test. Only those candidates who pass the competency test will proceed to a formal interview.

The closing date given is a guide only. There may be some occasions where we have to close a vacancy once sufficient applications have been received. It is therefore advisable that you submit your application as early as possible to avoid disappointment.

Only those candidates who clearly demonstrate how they meet the person specification criteria for this post will be shortlisted. Please note that where high volumes of applicants have been received, additional criteria may on occasion be used to determine the final shortlist.

Please also note that all recruitment is currently subject to restrictions on the allocation of Certificates of Sponsorship.

We are an accredited Living Wage Employer.

For further details / informal visits contact: Lucy Jenkins

Email address: Lucy.Jenkins@gosh.nhs.uk

Clinical Scientist at University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Job Reference: 282-SA12145
Employer: The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust
Location: The Royal Marsden Hospital Sutton, Sutton
Grade: Band 6
Hours: Full time – 37.5 hours per week

Contract: Permanent
Salary; £37,152 – £43,994 per annum
Closing: 24/09/2021

Click here for more information and to apply

The Royal Marsden has a vital role in championing change and improvement in cancer care through research and innovation, education and leading-edge practice. We are incredibly proud of our international reputation for pushing the boundaries and for our ground breaking work ensuring our patients receive the very best and latest in cancer treatment and care.

An exciting opportunity has arisen for a Genetic Technologist, with good interpersonal skills and a committed team member to join the Molecular Diagnostics team within the Clinical Genomics department. The department is located in the Centre for Molecular Pathology and is one of seven national Genomic Laboratory Hubs offering Cancer Genomic testing in England. It also works alongside Cancer Research UK in their Stratified Medicine Programme. The Centre for Molecular Pathology is a state-of-the-art facility bringing together translational science and molecular diagnostics and is one of the few specialised laboratories in molecular diagnostics of cancer in Europe. The Cinical Genomics department provides a reference Molecular Diagnostics and Cytogenetics Service for solid tumours and haematological malignancies, as well as participating in clinical trials and collaborating with industry, so as to provide cutting-edge genomic technologies to support personalised cancer treatment.

We are seeking an enthusiastic Genetic Technologist to contribute to the provision of a timely and efficient ISO 15189 accredited Clinical Genomics Service. The post holder will undertake molecular diagnostic testing and analysis, as well as administrative tasks of a designated area of work, with minimal supervision. This requires detailed theoretical and practical knowledge of the work area. The post holder must be able to take responsibility for working alone and as part of a team to achieve necessary performance levels. The range of tests available will be in continuous development and the post-holder will be responsible for the validation and verification of new techniques and tests, including the provision of NGS and ddPCR for molecular diagnostics in haematological and solid tumours. The post holder will be expected to assist in training of new staff members and visitors as well as to contribute to IT development and data management relating to the technical aspects of the molecular service and therefore needs to be fully IT literate. In addition the post holder will be required to support activities such as quality, including compliance with laboratory accreditation standards, equipment maintenance and participate in the departments training programme. Good communication and team working are essential.

The successful applicant must have a relevant BSc degree in Biological Sciences/Genetics. They must have in depth post-graduate experience in molecular diagnostics techniques. Voluntary registration with The Science Council (RSci) is desirable but not essential.

The Trust encourages and supports continuing professional and personal development and Pathology runs a CPD Club. Staff benefits include child care facilities, some accommodation, car parking at Sutton and various sports and social activities.

For further details / informal visits contact:

Emma Poyastro-Pearson, Operations Manager on emma.pearson@icr.ac.uk