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Ocean may hold key to new medicines


The key to new medicines to treat diseases such as cancer could come from the depths of the world’s oceans, according to scientists in Scotland.

Researchers at the University of Aberdeen are looking at the possibility of producing new treatments and drugs from marine organisms.

A new Biodiscovery Centre has been opened at the university which will see chemists and biologists work together on such projects.

It is hoped state-of-the art technology at the new centre, part-funded by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council, will help scientists expand their research.

Professor Marcel Jaspars, the centre’s director, said: “The greatest diversity of life on our planet can be found in the world’s seas in the form of marine organisms, which live in a huge variety of habitats.

“Scientists at the University of Aberdeen have been conducting research exploring how the rich and diverse range of unique compounds which exist in these organisms can be used in the development of drugs and other novel biomedical products for a number of years.

“The creation of the new Marine Biodiscovery Centre is allowing us to advance our research using state-of-the-art technologies, and work towards important new breakthroughs in this crucial area of medical discovery.”

Copyright Press Association 2010
University of Aberdeen


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