Sheffield student died after taking cyanide he got from University of Sheffield lab

He was studying for a PhD in microbiology

An inquest concluded today that PhD student, Mark Cooke, died after taking potassium cyanide which, according to a coroner, he had most likely taken from a University of Sheffield lab.

Cooke was researching for cures for infectious diseases, and therefore had access to lethal chemicals, when he took his life in September 2016.

Having spent much of his life suffering from anxiety and depression, he saw six NHS mental health services before being diagnosed with Asperger syndrome. He had also been suffering from suicidal thoughts and was concerned that his medication was increasing his heart rate.

Mark was carrying out his research in Firth Court

Mark was carrying out his research in Firth Court

Cooke was found in his home on 18th September 2016 after his boss, Professor Simon Foster, received an email from him stating: "I'm so sorry to send this message. but I've taken potassium cyanide. I tried, I tried. Please inform the police."

His mother thanked the University of Sheffield for their support at such a difficult time.

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