As the UK’s primary authority on protection from radiation, chemical and environmental hazards, the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) represents a significant national resource for industry, education, research and medicine.
A specific function of UKHSA is to carry out research to advance knowledge about protection from the risks of radiation, chemical and environmental hazards. This includes providing laboratory and technical services, running training courses and providing expert information. We provide a significant advisory role to regulators, government, the public and academia. We have a number of facilities and infrastructures supporting our work in radiation protection science, including the following:
- sources for ionising radiation, EMF and UV effect studies in cell and experimental animal models
- low dose rate cell culture irradiator with controlled oxygen environment
- UK ionising radiation worker cohorts
- high throughput sequencing and genomic array platforms
- a range of highly accurate gene expression tools for radiation exposure assessment
- unique access to internal radiation dosimetry computer models
- analytical chemistry – GC-MS, IPCMS
- radiochemical facilities allowing handling of α, β and γ emitters
- radionuclide counting and spectrometry
- Instrument testing and calibration facilities for ionising radiation monitors
- Computer codes for assessment of radiation releases
- Personal radiation dosimetry services for radiation workers
Public health research is also conducted at UKHSA’s laboratories at Colindale and Porton (focussing on infectious diseases), and the regional UKSHA laboratories.