Research core facilities

Sophisticated facilities for all

Through its strategic CORES program (Centralized Operation of Research Equipment and Support), Dalhousie Medical School has developed a range of core, multi-user research facilities that provide all its researchers with access to sophisticated equipment and facilities – maintained and operated by trained experts.

Not only does the CORES program make the most efficient use of resources by maintaining and operating centralized research facilities, it also:

  • promotes interdisciplinary collaboration
  • provides training to faculty members and trainees
  • helps researchers acquire major new pieces of equipment
  • keeps the research community up-to-date on emerging technologies through workshops and newsletters

Dalhousie Medical School provides ongoing operating support for its core facilities, as well as strategic guidance on development of future core facilities. Many of these have been established with funding support from the Dalhousie Medical Research Foundation and its annual Molly Appeal. More core facilities will be developed over time, some in partnership with the QEII Health Sciences Centre and the IWK Health Centre.

For information on CORES, contact Alejandro Cohen in the Medical Research Development Office, 902-494-8359 (Alejandro.Cohen@Dal.Ca).

New Equipment coming soon to CORES

Through recent CFI investment, CORES will soon be acquiring the following equipment:

NextSeq Desktop Sequencer EGAD
Liquid Handler EGAD
BioAnalyzer EGAD
BioSorter EGAD
LightSheet Z1 Fluorescence Microscope CMDI


CORE facilities, A-Z

Animal Care Facility

Shared by several faculties, Dalhousie University’s Animal Care Facility meets or exceeds the highest standards for the ethical and humane treatment of animals required for scientific and medical research. All medical breakthroughs have depended upon animal research at some point. Animal-based research continues to be critical in the search for treatments and cures for many diseases, including cancer, heart disease, and neurodegenerative and infectious diseases. Trained specialists care for the animals in a spacious, climate-controlled facility. Learn more about Dalhousie’s University’s Animal Care Facility.

Cellular & Molecular Digital Imaging Facility

One of Dalhousie Medical School’s first core facilities, the Cellular & Molecular Digital Imaging Facility was established in 1998 with the installation of the medical school’s first laser scanning confocal microscope. It provides state-of-the-art multi-user microscopy equipment, software, technical support and training. Learn more about the Cellular & Molecular Digital Imaging Facility.

Enhanced Gene Analysis & Discovery Facility

The Dalhousie Medical Research Foundation (DMRF) Olwen Dorothy Farrell Enhanced Gene Analysis & Discovery Facility was established in 2010. The cornerstone of this facility is an RNA-interference library, which provides scientists with a bank of 70,000 molecules for pinpointing the role of genes and proteins within cells. The DMRF’s 2009 Molly Appeal raised a significant portion of the funds, while private donors provided additional funds for the facility. Learn more about the Enhanced Gene Analysis & Discovery Facility.

Flow Cytometry Facility

The Flow Cytometry Facility provides researchers with access to three different flow cytometers. These instruments allow researchers to rapidly analyze and sort cells, to better understand their function and response to various circumstances, such as exposure to bacteria, viruses or allergens. Flow cytometry also enables researchers to identify which cells in a sample are dying and which are proliferating, which genes are turned on, and what proteins they’re producing. Learn more about the Flow Cytometry Facility.

Maritime Brain Tissue Bank

The Maritime Brain Tissue Bank collects and archives donated brain tissue to support neurodegenerative disease research. The tissues are available to researchers from across Canada and around the world who are studying these diseases. The Maritime Brain Tissue Bank was established at Dalhousie University in 1992 with help from the Alzheimer Society of Nova Scotia. Learn more about the Maritime Brain Tissue Bank.

Proteomics & Mass Spectrometry Facility

The Proteomics & Mass Spectrometry Facility houses sophisticated mass spectrometry equipment that allows researchers to understand the chemicals, proteins, enzymes, lipids, metabolites and small molecules at work in tissue samples. This capability sheds light on crucial information, including the pathways of disease, targets for treatment and the actions and side effects of drugs. Learn more about the Proteomics & Mass Spectrometry Facility.

Manager- Alejandro Cohen, 902-494-8359

Zebrafish Core Facility

Dalhousie Medical School’s Zebrafish Core Facility provides researchers with access to state-of-the-art facilities for developing and studying zebrafish models of disease, and for testing potential new treatments in these disease models. Apart from being transparent, and therefore easy to examine live under a microscope, zebrafish share many genes with humans and generate large numbers of offspring – making them an efficient, effective and cost-effective model system for biomedical research.

Manager - David Maley, 902-494-2227 (