§ Mr. Craigen
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science why research into the causes of blindness, including retinitis pigmentosa, has now been halted at Edinburgh University; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Mulley
I assume my hon. Friend is referring to the research programme at the Medical Research Council's Brain Metabolism Unit, Department of Pharmacology, Edinburgh. The unit's programme does not include research into causes of blindness generally but did include work in retinitis pigmentosa. The council tells me that this work was discontinued only after careful consideration and because of other more pressing claims on its resources. It continues to support other work relevant to this condition, and I would refer my hon. Friend to the information contained in the reply I gave to a Question by my hon. Friend the Member for Brent, South (Mr. Pavitt) on 17th March 1976.—[Vol. 907, c.539–40.]