PIONEERING scientist Dr Chris Scanlan, a former Liberal Democrat city councillor, has died aged 35 from cancer.

Mr Scanlan represented Barton and Sandhills for four years until he stood down in May 2010.

Dr Scanlan, who lived with his wife Julia in Oxford, died on May 4 and his funeral was held at Oxford Crematorium yesterday.

Dr Scanlan worked for the Glycobiology Institute at Oxford University’s Biochemistry department.

He joined the institute in 2000 and completed his DPhil in 2004, with some of his research conducted at the Scripps Research Institute in the United States.

Prof Raymond Dwek, director of the Glycobiology Institute, who worked with Dr Scanlan, said: “This is a huge loss, Chris was one of the most brilliant young scientists we had, one of the finest scientists I have ever met.

“He was an immunologist working on Aids, had novel ideas for HIV vaccines and was feted internationally.

“He told me a year ago he had one year to live.

“During the last year he achieved several breakthroughs in terms of immunology, leading to better treatment in cancer.”

Prof Dwek added that Dr Scanlan had remarkable talents he could apply to any sphere.

“When Chris told me he only had a year to live, he was remarkably calm,” Prof Dwek said.

“He wanted to leave a legacy and indeed this last year was one of his most productive scientifically.

“”I think the drive to do good science was a help and kept him going.”

Jean Fooks, leader of the city council’s Liberal Democrat group, said: “This is a terribly sad loss.

“Chris was a lovely guy, did his stint as a councillor, and was a valued member of the party.”