Glasgow Caledonian University has teamed up with a local private laboratory to provide students with a unique opportunity to see how a working biomedical laboratory operates.

The University is one of the top providers of Biomedical Science degrees in Scotland, and now the Biological and Biomedical Sciences Department, in the School of Health and Life Sciences, has an on-site private partner working in the area of diagnostics.

The new partnership will give students the chance to experience the hi-tech and automated analysers used by TFI Biomedical.

Professor Linda Scobie, Head of the Department of Biological and Biomedical Sciences, and Dr Linda Walsh, a Senior Lecturer in Biomedical Science, were responsible for bringing the clinical industry link to the Department.

“This is a brilliant opportunity to enable our students to experience first-hand applications for the position they are studying so hard for. We are delighted that this also enables an academic link to a developing local business,” said Professor Scobie.

Professor Allan Jamieson, Director and owner of The Forensic Institute and TFI Biomedical testing lab, praised the support provided by the University.

Professor Jamieson said: “For my team, this is just the perfect environment to deliver a first-class service, but also to become involved in the scientific research and education close to my heart.”

The lab currently performs biochemistry, haematology and immunochemical testing.

“Having developed from a COVID-19 testing lab, we clearly have the tools to expand our molecular genetics capability with testing for sexual health and microbiology, but for now we are focused on general health testing.  Being in such a great scientific environment creates so many opportunities,” added Professor Jamieson.

After graduating from Glasgow Caledonian two years ago, Rachael Kyle worked at TFI Biomedical’s COVID-19 testing lab in Cumbernauld before being part of the TFI team back at her Alma Mater.

Rachael said: “It has been an amazing two years and to be back as an alumnus now doing the job I studied four years for and helping other students is just something I never expected.”

Professor Scobie, who was Rachael’s project supervisor, said: “The landscape in biomedical science is changing rapidly.  It used to be that almost every one of our students could expect to work for the NHS but the rapid expansion of private medicine and the very welcome increased interest by some people in their own health has led to the creation of more labs like this.

“We have been impressed with TFI’s commitment to our own educational objectives and see this as a long-term project which may be encompassed in our own plans for an enhanced student health provision.  It is an exciting time.”

Photo shows Professor Scobie, Professor Jamieson and Rachael with biomedical science students who were visiting the TFI Biomedical lab.