Matrix LIMS Used by Liverpool GCPLab in UK Wide Tracking of COVID-19 Patient Outcomes


The Liverpool Good Clinical Practice Laboratory (GCPLab) Facility directed by Professor Bill Greenhalf, has a crucial role in supporting the International Severe Acute Respiratory and Emerging Infection Consortium - Coronavirus Clinical Characterisation Consortium (ISARIC-4C) running the Clinical Characterisation Protocol UK (CCP-UK) led by Professor Calum Semple in Liverpool, Dr Kenneth Baillie in Edinburgh and Professor Peter Openshaw at Imperial College London. The GCPLab facility is providing the kits for taking samples from patients with COVID-19 in England and Wales. The samples are then sent to leading UK laboratories for analysis of the virus from each patient and the biochemical and genetic features of the infected person. These features of the virus and patient are then matched back to clinical data to determine why different patients have different outcomes and what treatments are working best for different groups of patients. The quick and efficient link back to the patient requires the precise workflows provided by the MATRIX LIMS system that has been used in Liverpool for many years. Sample collection in Scotland is being co-ordinated by the team of Dr Antonia Ho in Glasgow, originally using their own sample management system. To improve delivery and provide better standardisation the Glasgow team wanted to use the same MATRIX LIMS system as Liverpool, Autoscribe were asked to help and stepped in to provide licences for the MATRIX system, allowing remote access for Glasgow to the Liverpool database.

“The Liverpool GCPLab facility is involved in setting up and running clinical Coronavirus studies to aid our understanding of the virus and the efficacy of vaccines and anti-viral agents through clinical trials”, said Bill Greenhalf, Director of the Liverpool GCPLab facility. “This work necessitated extending the Matrix Gemini LIMS system to allow access to our collaborators in Glasgow which was achieved very quickly with Autoscribe Informatics’ help. We have been using Matrix Gemini LIMS since 2008. The system has given us the flexibility to make our own configuration changes to meet the needs of each trial that the facility supports. The COVID 19 pandemic has pushed our adaptability to its very limit, we have only been able to meet the demands thanks to excellent new collaborations, such as our new relationship with Toni Ho’s group in Glasgow, and we are very grateful to Autoscribe for stepping in so quickly to help us provide access for Glasgow to our database and IT systems”