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The NCL is located at the Advanced Technology Research Facility (ATRF) in Frederick, Maryland, with over 11,000 square feet of laboratory and office space. The laboratories are outfitted with two tissue culture rooms, an isotope laboratory, a walk-in cold room, several microscopy rooms, a chromatography and electrophoresis area, a spectroscopy area, a formulation/synthetic lab with chemical fume hoods, multiple customizable research bays, and open floor space for freestanding instrumentation and equipment. For a representative list of instrumentation used at the NCL, please click here.

The NCL also has direct access to all resources at the Frederick National Laboratory for Cancer Research (FNL), including those co-located with the NCL at the ATRF. 

NCL Facilities


Relationship to Leidos Biomedical Research

The Nanotechnology Characterization Laboratory is part of the Frederick National Laboratory for Cancer Research (FNLCR), a government-owned, contractor-operated (GOCO) facility under NCI's federally funded research and development center (FFRDC). FNLCR is the only FFRDC dedicated entirely to biomedical research, and falls under NCI at Frederick's Operations and Technical Support (OTS) contract. Leidos Biomedical Research, Inc., a subsidiary of Leidos, is the OTS contractor for FNLCR. The mission of Leidos Biomedical Research, Inc. is to provide scientific, technical, management, administrative, and logistical support to NIH intramural laboratory research and development related to the causes of and cures for cancer and AIDS.

Leidos Biomedical Research, Inc. serves as the infrastructure support for the entire NCI at Frederick. The contract is the largest single research-based contract awarded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). Leidos Biomedical Research, Inc. employs about 2,000 staff including scientists, research assistants, technicians, engineers, administrative, maintenance, and support personnel.

Leidos Biomedical Research operates under a variety of regulatory, performance, and quality standards.
These include:

  • Leidos Biomedical Research research laboratories are operated in accordance with 21 CFR Part 58 "Good Laboratory Practice for Nonclinical Laboratory Studies."
  • Leidos Biomedical Research clinical testing laboratories in accordance with 42 CRF Part 493 "Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA)."
  • NCI at Frederick laboratory animal science programs, operated by Leidos Biomedical Research, are AAALAC accredited (Association for Accreditation and Assessment Laboratory Animal Care) and operate in accordance with the Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals and Public Health Service Policies. NCI at Frederick maintains an Assurance through the NIH Office of Animal Care and Use.
  • Leidos Biomedical Research operates the NCI's Biopharmaceutical Development Program and the NIAID/Vaccine Research Center's Vaccine Pilot Plant. Both programs manufacture pharmaceuticals for use in human clinical trials. These products are manufactured in accordance with FDA requirements for Current Good Manufacturing Practices 21CFR Chapter 1 Parts 210 and 211 and Biological Products Requirements 21 CFR Chapter 1 Parts 600 and 610.