Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

Princess Royal opens Scottish Centre for Regenerative Medicine

The Princess Royal unveils a plaque
Image caption The Princess Royal unveils a plaque at the Scottish Centre for Regenerative Medicine

A £54m cutting-edge stem cell research centre in Edinburgh has been officially opened by the Princess Royal.

The Royal opened the Scottish Centre for Regenerative Medicine as well as the £24m bio-incubator facility, Nine, in the Edinburgh BioQuarter.

Research into conditions such as multiple sclerosis and heart and liver disease will benefit from the new facilities in Little France.

The Princess Royal unveiled plaques at the centres.

Edinburgh University's Scottish Centre for Regenerative Medicine is the first large-scale, purpose-built facility of its kind and provides accommodation for up to 250 stem cell scientists.

Image caption The Scottish Centre for Regenerative Medicine is at Little France in Edinburgh

The centre, funded by Edinburgh University, Scottish Enterprise, the Medical Research Council (MRC) and the British Heart Foundation through its Mending Broken Hearts Appeal, is being opened by the Princess Royal in her role as Chancellor of Edinburgh University.

It includes the most up-to-date facilities in the UK, which meet the highest guidelines, to manufacture stem cell lines that could be used for patient therapies.

Nine, which has been jointly funded by Scottish Enterprise and the UK government's department for business, innovation and skills, has 85,000 sq ft of laboratory and office space for both established biotechnology companies and start-up ventures.

The Edinburgh BioQuarter is in the city's Little France area and includes the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh and Edinburgh University's Queen's Medical Research Institute and Chancellor's Building.

Professor Charles French-Constant, Scottish Centre for Regenerative Medicine's director, said: "Recent research into stem cells has heralded the beginning of a revolution in modern medicine.

"The Scottish Centre for Regenerative Medicine's great strength lies in bringing world-class clinicians and scientists to work together, encouraging the translation of laboratory discoveries into treatments for patients.

"The research will help in finding treatments for devastating conditions, for which there are currently no cures."

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