MEP passes science test at Dundee lab

25 July 2006
Scottish National Party MEP Alyn Smith marked the final approval of the EU's new research budget with a day's work experience at a Dundee bioscience lab.

Mr Smith spent the day with CXR Bioscience - a company which has evolved from research at Dundee's universities.

The European Council yesterday approved a budget of €37 billion for research and development, including research into stem cell technology - within strict guidelines.

Speaking from Dundee at the end of his science day Mr Smith said

"Scotland's biotech and life sciences industry is a great opportunity for our country to be at the forefront of new developments and to make some serious breakthroughs in tackling diseases and degenerative conditions amongst many other things.

"As much as spending the day at CXR was about the white coat and goggles the work I saw taking place was ahead of the game.

"I learnt a massive amount on this work experience - too often in the Parliament we are debating the funding of industries without really knowing what they are about and how they work. I've seen some incredibly impressive work going on here and my brain has been thoroughly boggled by some of the science.

"I fought throughout the debates on the EU research budget to make sure that as much of it as possible went into areas Scotland could benefit from, areas that we are increasingly specialising in. I hope our small research firms like CXR and our universities will be bidding for as much of that money as possible so that Scotland and Dundee in particular can retain her place as a world leader in biotech and life sciences research.