Laboratory & Facilities

The UCI-Fred Hutch Cancer Centre in Kampala, Uganda, is a three-story, 16,700 square-foot facility that opened in May 2015, and it features biomedical laboratories and spaces for training and outpatient care. Funding from the U.S. Agency for International Development, investment by Fred Hutch, and the support of the government of Uganda led to the construction of the facility.

In November 2020, the UCI-Fred Hutch Collaboration completed the construction of the new ground level, adding over 3,800 sq. ft. The new space houses the Collaboration's remarkable biorepository — with more than 150,000 biospecimens from a wide range of viral infections, host immunity, and cancers, as well as the research records archive. It brings all research and administrative functions under one roof. 

For information on the facility, please email Magdalene Kintu, Director, Administration and Operations, and for additional information on laboratory capabilities, please email Andrea Towlerton, Acting Laboratory Director, Hutchinson Centre Research Institute of Uganda.

Newly launched virtual tour of the UCI-Fred Hutch Cancer Centre

Take a virtual tour of the facility. This project was led by Magdalene Kintu, director, Administration and Operations and Jason Barrett, operations manager, Global Oncology. The video was created in 2021 by "Shot by Mu."

Molecular Diagnostics Laboratory


The molecular diagnostics laboratory is equipped with:

  • Sigma 4-16K Refrigerated Centrifuge fitted with a custom Qiagen rotor for high-through put DNA extraction
  • QIAexcel, QIAcube, and Qubit instrument are available for expedited and controlled nucleic acid and protein extraction and quantification at an ultra-sensitive level
  • Eppendorf Master Cycler Pro Thermocycler
  • Illumina MiSeq DNA sequencer & next-generation controlled environment
  • Cephid 16-Cartridge GeneXpert
  • ABI 7900 thermocycler, in addition to two new 7500 systems

Equipment is maintained in accordance with Good Laboratory Practice and CAP standards

Histopathology Laboratory


This laboratory includes stations for grossing and staining tumor biopsies, as well as multi-headed microscope with telepathology capabilities, in addition to:

  • Recycler
  • 2 fume hoods
  • Cryostat
  • Manual and automated stainer
  • Nikon 50i multi-headed teaching microscope scope with camera
  • 2 Leica microtomes
  • 1 Leica cryostat
  • 2 Leica embedding stations
  • Saikura multistainers and paraffin processing units

Specimen Processing/Biorepository


Specimen storage is available via refrigerator and freezer storage and provided in a separate, secured room in the laboratory. Sample processing services include standard plasma, serum, and buffy coat separation, PBMC isolation by Ficoll separation, granulocyte isolation, solid tissue formalin fixing, snap-freezing of tissue and cells, and cryopreservation capabilities.

Biosafety Level 2 Laboratory


To ensure the safe use of viruses, such as HIV, and to comply with the blood borne pathogen standard, the UCI-FHCC has a designated BSL2 laboratory to accommodate infection-related research. The UCI-FHCC operates in conjunction with the Fred Hutch Institutional Biosafety Committee regulations as well as in country standards of Uganda.

Immunology Laboratory (Future)


This lab will be equipped for antigen and antibody testing and immune function assessment. 

UCI Outpatient Clinics


The facility houses the UCI’s pediatric outpatient clinic and two adult outpatient clinics (gynecologic oncology and Kaposi sarcoma) It has four clinical exam rooms, 12 curtained infusion bays and four infusion chairs. The facility also has a clinical laboratory and two pharmacies (retail and research).

Training and Conference Facilities


The building is equipped with training facilities and a conference room that facilitate domestic and international collaboration.

For information on training and conference facilities, please email Magdalene Kintu, Director, Administration and Operations. 

UCI-Fred Hutch Cancer Centre – From Construction to Research

The construction of the $10 million-dollar UCI-Fred Hutch Cancer Centre began in 2011. The photos below provides a snapshot of the building’s construction—from scaffolding, to the grand opening ceremony, and to our lab team conducting research in the state-of-the-art lab facilities.

UCI construction
Grand opening
Working in the lab
UCI construction
UCI campus
Working in the lab
UCI construction
Grand opening
Working in the lab