Glasgow University wins £18.5m forensic pathology contract

The University of Glasgow's Section of Forensic Medicine and Science has been awarded a seven year contract by the Crown Office to continue to provide forensic pathology services for the West of Scotland.

The contract, worth over £2 million each year, will enable the Section to consolidate its position as a centre of excellence for forensic and legal medicine and strengthen its research and teaching role.

The contract, which was officially announced in the University's Newsletter, will also enable the Section to recruit additional staff.

Professor Barry Gusterson, Head of Cancer Science and Molecular Pathology, welcomed the award: 'The new contract is one the biggest single funding awards the University has ever received and it will enable us to invest in the future development of the department. It is a vindication of the quality of the service we provide and is an acknowledgement of the high standards provided by all members of the Section.'

Forensic Pathology carries out approximately 2,100 post mortem examinations each year for the Procurator Fiscals of Glasgow and the surrounding regions, which includes approximately 70 homicides.

The Section ヨ which also provides teaching and research work - has a staff of four pathologists at consultant level and one trainee. Research interests include head injury, drug and alcohol abuse, epilepsy and war crimes.

The Forensic Toxicology Service has been developed over the past 35 years into one of the largest post mortem forensic toxicology service providers in Western Europe.

Toxicological investigations undertaken include drug and poison analysis in cases of sudden and unexpected death, and also bioanalysis specimens from cases involving living persons, such as driving under the influence of drugs, suspected drug-assisted assault, employment screening and drug testing in prison.

Martin Shannon (

First published: 27 November 2006