Davidson Building


The Davidson Building, originally Biomedicine, is situated to the east of the West Medical Building. The building was renamed in 1999 in honour of James Norman Davidson, Professor of Biochemistry from 1947 to 1972 who was celebrated for his work on nucleic acids.

For many years the subject of Biochemistry was taught in the Institute of Physiology housed in the West Medical Building. In 1948 the department became autonomous and its name was changed from Physiological Chemistry to Biochemistry by a decision of the University Court. In 1958 plans to build the new Biochemistry building above the University’s boiler house were delayed. Jack Coia, the boiler house’s architect, was to design the new building but his reputation with the University had been dented by construction problems at the Garscube Veterinary Hospital resulting in Richard De’Ath of Keppie & Henderson being selected to design Biochemistry’s building. It took another two years for the plans to be approved. Construction began in 1960 and the final building comprised three main floors about the boiler house. Biochemistry was occupied in September 1963 and the building was officially opened by Sir Rudolph Peters, former Whiteley Professor of Biochemistry at the University of Oxford, in January 1964.

The building housed the Biochemistry department until 1994 when it became home to the Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Division of the Institute of Biomedical and Life Sciences.

Very few original internal features remain. These comprise: the corridor lockers, the entrance doors at the east end, stair handrails, refurbished seating and rooflight panelling in the main lecture theatre.


Davidson Building
Dumbarton Way
G12 8QQ

Record last updated: 11th Jun 2015

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