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Health Sciences media releases 


New Zealand researchers help re-write the historical record of Vanuatu

Friday, 23 March 2018 10:42am

Researchers from The University of Otago are playing a key role in revealing previously unknown information about prehistoric settlement in the South Pacific.

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Otago researchers reveal childhood predictors of becoming overweight or obese

Friday, 23 March 2018 9:37am

Childhood predictors of becoming overweight or obese as adults in New Zealand include being male, born into a single-parent family, having parents with larger body size and limited or no breastfeeding, new University of Otago research reveals.

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University of Otago researcher at forefront of discovery to help end tuberculosis

Thursday, 22 March 2018 9:19am

As World Tuberculosis Day looms on 24 March, one of the University of Otago’s latest Sir Charles Hercus Health Research Fellows, Dr Htin Lin Aung, is building relationships to help combat the top infectious disease killer in the world.

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University of Otago researchers unravel knowledge in dolphin teeth to provide environmental insights

Wednesday, 21 March 2018 11:06am

University of Otago researchers are using bottlenose dolphin teeth to help them understand coastal contamination.

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Standardised packaging a good move, but Otago researchers call for more in fight against tobacco

Wednesday, 14 March 2018 11:31am

Today marks the introduction of standardised packaging for tobacco products sold in New Zealand.

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Otago researchers part of $18M project to reveal causes of fever in sub-Saharan Africa and Asia

Friday, 9 March 2018 11:05am

Otago researchers are helping lead a major international project to determine what the main causes of fever in sub-Saharan Africa and Asia are and how they should be treated.

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Study of smoking among doctors and nurses shows very low smoking prevalence and Smokefree 2025 goal can be achieved

Friday, 9 March 2018 10:57am

A new study on smoking trends among doctors and nurses in New Zealand finds smoking has declined steadily within these healthcare professions. Researchers say this shows that very low smoking rates can be achieved in large occupational groups, suggesting that New Zealand’s Smokefree 2025 goal is reachable.

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Trade treaty threatens health if climate change not addressed: University of Otago expert

Friday, 9 March 2018 10:47am

A University of Otago health expert is calling for an independent assessment of the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade pact’s potential impacts on climate change and health.

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New Co-Directors of Cancer Society Social and Behavioural Research Unit

Wednesday, 7 March 2018 11:24am

The new Co-Directors of the Cancer Society Social & Behavioural Research Unit, Dr Richard Egan and Dr Louise Marsh, are keen to ensure they make a real difference to the wellbeing of New Zealanders through high-quality research.

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New Chair for research foundation’s advisory committee

Wednesday, 7 March 2018 10:18am

Dr Rebecca Grainger from the Department of Medicine at the University of Otago, Wellington has been appointed Chair of the Research for Life’s Research Advisory Committee.

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Teachers suffer post-traumatic stress following ‘quakes – Otago research highlights

Thursday, 1 March 2018 12:56pm

School teachers were among the majority of frontline workers with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) following the Christchurch earthquakes, new University of Otago research shows.

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Innovative health and well-being hub opens in Dunedin

Wednesday, 28 February 2018 4:33pm

A new iwi-driven health village focusing on affordable, high quality health and social services in partnership with the University of Otago officially opened its doors in Dunedin today.

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New study shows when ‘broken hearts’ are most deadly

Tuesday, 27 February 2018 11:52am

A University of Otago, Christchurch, summer student has identified the days when patients are most vulnerable to dying from a ‘broken heart’.

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Va’a o Tautai further builds Otago’s reputation as leader in Pacific education

Tuesday, 27 February 2018 10:09am

The University of Otago continues to lead the way in education for Pacific peoples with the development of Va’a o Tautai, the Pacific entity within the Division of Health Sciences.

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New Zealand-led heart failure findings debunk world medical view

Tuesday, 27 February 2018 12:00pm

Thousands of New Zealanders can look forward to improvements in treatment and care of heart failure following new research findings that look set to alter the clinical approach and health care planning for heart failure globally.

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Otago academic gains fresh insights into the inner workings of the brain

Monday, 26 February 2018 3:52pm

New discoveries into how information is stored in the brain have been made by a University of Otago researcher.

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Out of prison and back to smoking?

Friday, 23 February 2018 4:20pm

A lack of support means many prisoners relapse back to smoking on release, despite many wanting to stay smokefree, a new study has found.

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Therapeutic relationships key to reducing suicides – University of Otago experts

Friday, 23 February 2018 10:06am

Ongoing contact between health professionals and patients is likely to have more of an impact in helping to reduce suicide death rates than a perfectly completed risk assessment tool, University of Otago psychological experts say.

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Christchurch researcher easing the pain of gout

Friday, 16 February 2018 2:53pm

A Christchurch rheumatologist has won Medicines New Zealand's top prize for research into how increasing dosages of gout medicines can dramatically improve patients’ lives.

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Nano-scale science helps prize-winning Otago scientist make a big impact

Tuesday, 13 February 2018 4:36pm

A University of Otago scientist at the forefront of developing applications from tiny science to powering a new technology sector has won the 2017 Prime Minister’s MacDiarmid Emerging Scientist Prize.

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Third vaccine dose needed to protect young New Zealanders from mumps outbreak

Tuesday, 13 February 2018 4:35pm

Urgent and proactive action is needed to protect young people from the current mumps outbreak in New Zealand, says Dr Ayesha Verrall, an infectious diseases physician and researcher at the University of Otago, Wellington.

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Switching to vaping not always straightforward: Otago research

Thursday, 8 February 2018 2:48pm

Smokers attempting to quit the habit by vaping or using e-cigarettes do not always find the process plain sailing, according to new University of Otago research published in the international journal, Tobacco Control.

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New University of Otago research on women involved in the ‘Unfortunate Experiment’

Thursday, 8 February 2018 10:38am

A final report on the unethical clinical study conducted by Dr Herbert Green at National Women’s Hospital in Auckland from the 1960s to the 1980s, known widely as the “Unfortunate Experiment”, has just been published in the Australian and New Zealand Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology.

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Otago research provides more incentives for desk-dwellers to get up and move

Wednesday, 7 February 2018 9:39am

Taking regular activity breaks while sitting for long periods does not increase your appetite, University of Otago academics have discovered.

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First human trial of potentially game-changing diabetes treatment set to commence

Wednesday, 7 February 2018 2:17pm

University of Otago researchers are ready to take a significant step in the development of a new natural product that could potentially prevent diabetes.

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Considering public health issues- the 22nd Public Health Summer School

Monday, 5 February 2018 9:05am

Leading international and New Zealand health experts will be in Wellington to participate in the 22nd Public Health Summer School run by the University of Otago, Wellington in February. The Public Health Summer School will be officially opened by the Minister of Health, Hon Dr David Clark on 7 February.

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Surgeons look to do the right thing by their patients

Friday, 2 February 2018 2:03pm

New Zealand surgeons are often prepared to treat an abnormality discovered during an elective surgical procedure in the absence of patient consent, especially if the patient’s health is threatened and the risk of the additional procedure is low.

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Otago study links childhood fitness to healthy lungs in adulthood

Thursday, 1 February 2018 9:34am

Fit children whose fitness improves during childhood and adolescence have better lung function as young adults, according to a University of Otago-led study.

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Mind the gap – public and expert views on cancer risk

Tuesday, 23 January 2018 1:30pm

There are substantial gaps between expert recommendations and public knowledge about risk factors for cancer, though these gaps are closing for some cancer types, according to new University of Otago research.

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Otago reveals concerning prevalence of vitamin D deficiency in Southern New Zealand women

Monday, 22 January 2018 12:07pm

New Zealand women and their babies are at greater risk of vitamin D deficiency and current health guidelines fall short of curbing this detrimental trend, new University of Otago research shows.

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Talking about diabetes – improving health, one sentence at a time

Wednesday, 17 January 2018 9:53am

Primary care physicians can improve their communication to newly-diagnosed diabetes patients by offering more information specific to the patient’s experience, new research from Otago, Auckland and Victoria universities shows.

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Predator Free 2050 has major benefits for human health

Monday, 15 January 2018 9:12am

The Predator Free 2050 campaign to rid New Zealand of rats and possums will have major benefits for human health as well as for native plants and animals, says University of Otago, Wellington public health researcher Dr Mary McIntyre.

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Shade shortage in Wellington playgrounds: Otago research highlights the need to ‘slip, slop, slap and wrap’ this summer

Tuesday, 9 January 2018 4:51pm

Children visiting playgrounds this summer may be at high risk of sunburn, according to a new study from the University of Otago, Wellington.

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Elite rugby players not immune to body image issues

Monday, 8 January 2018 2:33pm

Despite being in peak physical form, young elite rugby players may be suffering from body image issues and poor nutritional choices, a University of Otago study has found.

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Otago breakthrough in diabetic heart disease

Friday, 5 January 2018 11:26am

The molecule responsible for heart disease in diabetics has been identified by University of Otago researchers, greatly improving chances of survival.

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Chronic lung disease treatment in New Zealand often not consistent with international guidelines

Tuesday, 19 December 2017 10:53am

University of Otago researchers have found that the treatment of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) in New Zealand frequently does not conform to international guidelines.

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Guidelines needed around searching for patient information on the internet

Tuesday, 19 December 2017 10:36am

Medical professionals have a range of tools at their disposal to care for patients. New University of Otago research delves into the ethical dilemma of adding the internet to their choices.

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Sex advice and Siri? To Google or not to Google? These are the questions

Thursday, 14 December 2017 9:31am

In an article published today in the Christmas issue of the British Medical Journal, New Zealand researchers found that Google laptop searches performed better at finding online sexual health advice than the digital assistants on smartphones.

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No hat, no play? Not always: Otago research

Thursday, 7 December 2017 9:38am

Many children may not be sun-safe during school lunch breaks, research from the University of Otago, Wellington, reveals.

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Otago University breakthrough in the war on sugar

Thursday, 7 December 2017 1:40pm

Distinguishing naturally occurring sugars in a person’s diet from those added as sweetener has been challenging – until now, thanks to a new method developed by the University of Otago.