Measurement for our planet
Measurement for our planet

As COP26 approaches, discover how NPL plays a key role in enabling climate action through the delivery of accurate, reliable data that supports decision making and enables low carbon innovation.



We measure biological systems to support the development of new bioproducts and services

Developing biophysical measurements to understand the relationship between biological systems and processes

Biomolecular structure and function underpin all biological processes, including the effect of destructive diseases and pathogens on our cells and our bodies' defence mechanisms. Reliable measurement is crucial to understanding more about these complex processes, and how we can make use of them to improve healthcare.

By developing and using cutting-edge measurement tools and methods, we are applying our expanding knowledge of biological processes to help create new treatments and diagnostics, as well as make current ones more effective. Our research into the re-fitting of biological molecules and processes through synthetic biology could hold the key to overcoming antimicrobial resistance, and open up new possibilities for gene therapy.

We also work with industry to help translate innovation into applications in sectors ranging from biotechnology and drug development to agriculture and smart materials. Translating research into advanced treatments and cost-effective products relies on reproducibility, repeatability, traceability and comparability of measurement results. To realise this, we develop reference materials and methods for biological and physical parameters.

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Our research

We develop cutting edge measurement tools and methods to unlock new possibilities for real-world applications, from drug discovery to synthetic biology.

Translational metrology for antimicrobial and drug discovery

We develop new measurement tools for the relationship between structure and activity in the fight against antimicrobial resistance

Metrology for engineering biology

We are supporting the synthetic biology industry to engineer and validate new tools and technologies based on the principles of biological modularity

Cellular metrology

We are quantifying intra- and extra-cellular processes to bring advanced medicinal products to market faster

International standardisation

We provide leadership in international metrology activities in the emerging area of biometrology, facilitating greater collaboration

Our services

Our services are relied upon by organisations looking to deliver a step change in:

  • Drug development
  • Measuring cellular processes
  • Synthetic biology
  • Understanding the mechanisms of antibiotic resistance
  • Imaging of multi-cellular processes


Case study

Validating a new dialysis-based protein crystallography methodology


Case study

Rapid prediction of immunoassay performance


Case study

Optimising viral vaccine development


Case study

Supporting new routes for therapeutic drug delivery


Case study

Using protein rulers to calibrate high-resolution microscopes


Our resources

Whether you’re looking for good practice guidance, more information on our research, or our latest publications, we have made a broad range of resources freely available.


Our team

Our people are leaders in their fields. Take a look at our Biometrology team.
View our team