WILL: Professor Noreen Murray left £2 million to fund research.
Edinburgh University molecular geneticist Professor Noreen Murray died last year aged 76 in the city after losing her fight against the illness.
In the early 1970s she, together with her husband Sir Kenneth Murray, led the development of recombinant DNA technology, or genetic engineering as it is commonly called.
The couple also helped to develop the first vaccination against hepatitis B approved for use in humans. Their work put Edinburgh and the UK at the head of a revolution in scientific research.
Mrs Murray's will reveals she had an estate valued at almost £9m at the time of her death with £2m being donated to the Royal Society in London to be used for research into neurological science. The historic body awards grants to enable scientists in the UK to carry out pioneering studies.
In 2010 Mrs Murray was diagnosed as suffering from a form of motor neurone disease.
Friends say she confronted the terminal condition with courage and dignity. By the beginning of last year she could not speak but continued to come into her office at the university to deal with correspondence and to converse with colleagues via notes. She eventually entered the Marie Curie hospice in Edinburgh, where she died on May 12 last year with her husband at her side.
Mrs Murray also bequeathed £100,000 each to Lancaster Girls' Grammar School, which she attended, and Lancaster and Warwick universities.
She also left £250,000 to King's College University in London, where she studied, and £25,000 to Scots charity the Woodland Trust. The remainder of her estate was left to her husband, who was appointed executor of her will which she wrote in January last year.
Mrs Murray was born in Read, near Burnley in Lancashire, in 1935 and grew up in Bolton-le-Sands. She attended Lancaster Girls' Grammar and won scholarships to enter King's College London to study Botany.
She developed an interest in microbial genetics and after graduation moved to Birmingham University to work for a PhD in the new department of microbiology. It was there she met her husband, a fellow PhD student, and they were married in 1958. The couple had no children.
In 1968, they joined the newly formed department of molecular Biology at Edinburgh University. Mrs Murray was appointed to a personal chair in molecular genetics in 1988. She is credited with making a major contribution to the development of gene-cloning technology.
Her outstanding achievements were recognised with many honours including election to the Royal Societies of Edinburgh and London, several honorary degrees and a CBE for services to science. In later years she joined the advisory panel of Edinburgh vaccine company BigDNA. Mrs Murray's fortune included an £800,000 house in London and investment portfolio in the US worth more than £4m. Friends described her as a very unassuming and quietly spoken woman who felt nervous when speaking in public.
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