Chancellor opens research centre
A new centre for research into motor neurone disease has been opened by HRH The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.
The Chancellor of the University attended an event for the Euan MacDonald Centre for Motor Neurone Disease Research.
The Euan MacDonald Centre
The centre brings together a hub of experts in areas including stem cell and neurological research.
It was set up following a donation from Euan MacDonald, 34, who was diagnosed with motor neurone disease in his 20s and his father, Donald MacDonald, a leading Scottish businessman.
The University also recently appointed Professor Siddharthan Chandran as the centre's director.
Improving patient care
It is through gaining greater knowledge of this disease that we will be able to develop therapies to slow it down
The centre will work to translate research from the laboratory to the clinic.
Professor Chandran, a clinical neurologist, will also work with NHS colleagues and MND Scotland to set up a clinical register of MND patients.
This will help improve patient care by sharing knowledge, with a view to establishing clinical trials.
Researchers will look at why motor neurones - cells which control voluntary muscle activity such as speaking, walking and breathing - break down.
They will work collaboratively with specialists in motor neurone disease both nationally and internationally.
Motor Neurone Disease
Motor Neurone Disease affects around one in 100,000 people, yet while in a small minority of cases the disease seems to be inherited, scientists are not sure what causes it.
Around 250 people in Scotland are diagnosed with motor neurone disease
Neurodegenerative diseases are among the largest unmet needs in modern medicine. Edinburgh is very strong in areas such as neurology, stem cell biology and regenerative medicine and this is a terrific opportunity to make a difference.