Rosalind Franklin Institute

The University of Leeds is a founding partner in the  Rosalind Franklin Institute (the Franklin), a national institute dedicated to transforming life sciences through interdisciplinary research and technology development.

The Franklin’s core purpose is to design and develop new technologies that will allow us to see the biological world through an entirely new lens. This aligns closely with research in the Astbury Centre for Structural Molecular Biology, where researchers from across the University of Leeds are collaborating to understand life in atomic detail.

Leeds joins nine other UK universities, Diamond Light Source and the Science and Technology Facilities Council (part of UK Research and Innovation) as partners in the Franklin.

The Franklin has five science research themes:

A key element of our research programme at Leeds is to engage in ambitious collaborations involving both academic and industrial partners, working together to develop new technologies. The Rosalind Franklin Institute will provide many and varied opportunities to do that, drawing on a large and expanding pool of world class expertise.

Next Generation Chemistry for Medicine

Professor Adam Nelson from the University’s Astbury Centre leads 'High-Throughput Molecular Discovery' within the Next Generation Chemistry for Medicine theme. A priority for the theme is to unlock chemistry’s full potential to speed up the drug discovery process and make it more effective. At the heart of this step change will be the Franklin’s high throughput discovery facility, which is being established at Leeds and will be housed at the Franklin’s Hub building on the Harwell Campus. This facility will accelerate discovery by enabling automation and integration of molecular design, synthesis, evaluation and refinement. Robotics and Artificial Intelligence (AI) will be harnessed to enable the identification of new bioactive molecules up to 10 times faster than current discovery approaches.

"The Rosalind Franklin Institute's high throughput facility will allow us to maximise the value of the new chemistry that is being developed at Leeds and elsewhere. It will enable us to accelerate the discovery of chemical probes and drugs, for example by investigating multiple compound series in parallel."

Professor of Chemical Biology, Adam Nelson

Contact us 

For more information on the University’s partnership with the Rosalind Franklin Institute, please email the Rosalind Franklin Institute team at