Page last updated at 15:37 GMT, Monday, 22 March 2010

Nobel Prize-winning scientist Sir James Black dies

Sir James Black
Sir James Black is credited with inventing beta-blockers

Nobel Prize-winning scientist Sir James Black has died at the age of 85, it has been announced.

Sir James was considered one of the great Scottish scientists of the 20th Century and is credited with having invented beta-blocker drugs in 1962.

He was born in Uddingston, Lanarkshire, grew up in Fife, and studied medicine at St Andrews University.

In 1988 he won the Nobel Prize for medicine and was given the UK's highest honour, the Order of Merit, in 2000.

Sir James died on Monday morning after a long illness.

Beta-blockers now play an essential role in the treatment of angina and heart attacks.

The Scottish scientist also went on to invent the first effective non-surgical treatment for stomach ulcers.

Medals and awards charting his career went on display at the National Museums of Scotland in Edinburgh last year.

From 1992 and to 2006, Sir James was Chancellor of the University of Dundee, where his undergraduate medical studies took place while the college was part of St Andrews University.

The Sir James Black Centre is now home to the University of Dundee's School of Life Sciences.

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