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News archive: Otago Department of Biochemistry

News archive pages for:

2021 2020 2019 2018 2017 2016 2015 2014


The current year's news stories are below:

Record graduation numbers for COVID cohort

Wednesday, 21 December 2022 4:55pm

Congratulations to all former biochemistry students graduating this month! Tino pai rawa atu! The Department is particularly thrilled to see a record number of PhD completions this year, despite the challenges that this cohort has faced with the COVID pandemic. Sixteen former PhD students graduated this year, 10 of them in December.

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Graduate battles wasps and more to gain PhD

Friday, 16 December 2022 1:26pm

Along with nine other graduands from the Department of Biochemistry, Gemma McLaughlin graduates with her PhD this week. But the journey that Gemma took to get to this point turned out to be very different to the one she thought she would take when she started her PhD study.

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The Diermeier Lab has three PhDs graduating this week!

Friday, 16 December 2022 1:02pm

Dr Sarah Diermeier leads a highly successful group in the Department of Biochemistry that carries out research into cancer and RNA biology. Three former students from Sarah’s research group graduate with their PhDs this week.

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Otago Biochemistry End-of-Year Shindig 2022

Friday, 16 December 2022 11:57am

Scientists, students and professional staff flocked to Biochemistry’s BIG13 (ground floor seminar room) to celebrate the achievements of the past year, forget their frustrations, and to gorge on strawberries during the Department’s annual end of year party.

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2022 BMS Staff End of Year Function and Awards

Monday, 12 December 2022 2:45pm

Staff from across the School of Biomedical Sciences gathered last week to celebrate the achievements of the past year and find out who won the teaching and research awards for 2022.

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Otago researchers set to tackle health issues with Career Development Awards

Monday, 28 November 2022 2:28pm

From a global health crisis to Aotearoa’s health inequity – University of Otago projects awarded Health Research Council funding will benefit those at home and around the world.

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$3.8 million to Otago researchers in Career Development Awards

Monday, 28 November 2022 11:19am

The Health Research Council has awarded 19 Otago researchers almost $3.8 million in Career Development Awards.

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Valued Otago biochemist awarded Carl Smith Medal for outstanding research

Thursday, 24 November 2022 11:46am

Associate Professor Peter Mace was officially presented with the University’s Carl Smith Medal for outstanding research this week at a public lecture and ceremony attended by current and former colleagues, collaborators, and whānau.

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Bacterial biofilm therapeutics project wins Marsden Fund support

Tuesday, 15 November 2022 9:36am

A project investigating new ways to fight deadly bacterial biofilms has won a Marsden Fast-Start fellowship for its lead researcher, Otago biochemist Dr Matthias Fellner.

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2022 MSc Research Presentations

Monday, 14 November 2022 11:40am

In a series of four lunchtime sessions held over the past few weeks, Otago Biochemistry Master’s degree students have been presenting their research project progress to assembled members of the Department of Biochemistry.

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Undergrad students inspire future biochemists at high schools

Wednesday, 26 October 2022 10:22am

It is not an easy thing to keep a class of high school students quiet and attentive for 20 minutes. Our 300-level students have recently been sharing their enthusiasm for biochemistry with high school students throughout Dunedin as part of their their second semester assessments.

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Promotion to Professor for statistical genomics specialist

Tuesday, 18 October 2022 11:13am

Congratulations to our own Michael Black who this year was promoted to Professor on the back of a stellar academic career bringing statistics to biomolecular research. Mik's focus is on using statistics and computational tools to wrangle the huge datasets integral to modern biomolecular research, mainly applied to human diseases such as cancer, but also in agricultural and horticultural research. His ability to form strong collaborations with researchers across many disciplines and places underpins his research success.

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46th Meeting of the Biochemistry Department Research Society

Monday, 29 August 2022 11:27am

Last week the Department celebrated the hard work of our fourth year students at the 46th Meeting of the Biochemistry Department Research Society.
At this meeting, every fourth year student - including those studying for Honours and Master’s degrees - presents the research they have been working on in labs across the Department throughout the year. This is generally the first experience that these students have in a real academic research lab.

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Leading scientist awarded key research honour

Wednesday, 24 August 2022 3:37pm

Leading structural biologist Associate Professor Peter Mace has been awarded one of the University of Otago’s highest research honours.

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Otago Biochemistry celebrates Pasifika PhD

Monday, 22 August 2022 11:27am

Over the weekend, the Department of Biochemistry was privileged to celebrate the graduation of one of our first Pasifika students to complete a PhD, Dr Jaye Moors.

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Almost $24 million in HRC funding for School of Biomedical Sciences academics

Friday, 5 August 2022 4:14pm

Ten out of the 22 successful Health Research Council (HRC) grants received by the University of Otago were for recipients based in the School of Biomedical Sciences (BMS).

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First opportunity for many Otago Biochemistry postgrad students to share their research

Thursday, 4 August 2022 1:22pm

The 2022 School of Biomedical Sciences Postgraduate Symposium was held last week at the University’s Student Union. This was the first time that many of the postgraduate students in the BMS have had the opportunity to attend or present their research at a scientific meeting in person, thanks to the pandemic.

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Two Health Sciences Career Development Postdoctoral Fellowships for Biochemistry

Wednesday, 3 August 2022 10:27am

Dr Katerina Achilleos and Dr Liam Turk from the Department of Biochemistry have each been awarded one of the highly competitive Health Sciences Career Development Postdoctoral Fellowships.

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Trial of world-first gene therapy for Batten disease

Tuesday, 2 August 2022 4:03pm

A University of Otago researcher is involved in a breakthrough trial which could improve the quality of life for children diagnosed with Batten disease.

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Significant step on path to developing Alzheimer’s therapy

Monday, 1 August 2022 2:23pm

A brain protein with high potential to delay or reverse the onset of Alzheimer’s disease has been exploited by University of Otago researchers.

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Thirteen Murphy/Smith scholarships awarded for 2022

Wednesday, 27 July 2022 11:13am

Thirteen Murphy/Smith scholarships awarded for 2022.

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Funding success for cancer research at Otago Biochemistry

Monday, 18 July 2022 4:04pm

Two research proposals from the Biochemistry Department have made it through the highly competitive NZ HRC project funding application round this year.

Both projects aim to help improve cancer treatments using knowledge of biomolecules, but each uses a different approach. One uses the ability to catalogue the thousands of RNA molecules present in a single cell, and the other looks at just a few protein molecules, but in intricate detail.

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Rhiannon Adams wins Marjorie McCallum MSc scholarship.

Friday, 15 July 2022 10:41am

Rhiannon Adams, who last year won the The Mervyn Smith Prize for the student with the highest level of attainment in biochemistry in the first year MSc class, has been awarded the Marjorie McCallum MSc scholarship for 2022.

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New research provides insight into Long COVID and ME

Tuesday, 12 July 2022 11:43am

Researchers have uncovered how post-viral fatigue syndromes, including Long COVID, become life-changing diseases and why patients suffer frequent relapses.

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International students excited to be in Dunedin

Tuesday, 12 July 2022 3:18pm

A common interest in biomechanics has led one University of Otago PhD candidate from Iran to Dunedin.

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Cromwell community supports Otago Biochemistry master’s student

Tuesday, 21 June 2022 1:13pm

Master’s student Cait MacTaggart has the support of the Rotary and Lions Clubs in her hometown of Cromwell behind her as she launches into a career in health-related research.

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Division of Health Sciences Accelerator Grants awarded

Wednesday, 1 June 2022 8:35am

Seventeen early and mid-career researchers (EMCR) have received a boost from the Division of Health Sciences with an Accelerator Grant.

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Follow the glow

Monday, 23 May 2022 9:34am

The fascinating story of Professor Kurt Krause's research career, from fistfights and infectious diseases to crystals and glowworms

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Master's 'challenging and rewarding'

Friday, 20 May 2022 12:36pm

Graduating in absentia can be hard for any student wanting to celebrate but for Madeline McIntyre, she wouldn’t have it any other way.

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Engineering led to PhD in biochemistry

Thursday, 19 May 2022 1:58pm

Charles Shaw shares how his background in mechanical engineering not only led to his PhD in Biochemistry, but also complemented his research.

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Biochemistry Graduation function

Tuesday, 17 May 2022 1:59pm

On Saturday 14th May the Department of Biochemistry celebrated Otago's 2022 May graduation ceremony with a social function for graduates and their families.

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Dunedin kids go Bananas! DNA activity at the museum.

Monday, 16 May 2022 2:15pm

Dr Nathan Kenny ran a children's "DNA from bananas" activity at the museum on Saturday.

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Research leader pushes nanomedicine hub in NZ

Wednesday, 11 May 2022 11:27am

New Zealand should become a nanomedicine production hub, says Dr Sarah Diermeier, an up-and-coming commercial researcher based here at Otago Biochemistry.

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Scientist and DJ graduates with PhD 

Tuesday, 10 May 2022 2:02pm

Passionate muso and dedicated scientist Katie Peppercorn shares her PhD journey and why it is important to be more than a ‘one-trick pony’. 

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Academic awards for 2021

Monday, 2 May 2022 1:03pm

The 2021 Biochemistry academic awards were won by Theresa Matheson-Grant, Anita Lu, Flynn Kelly, Louise Walker, and Rhiannon Adams

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Oliver Newman wins Joan Mary Anderson Award for 2021

Friday, 29 April 2022 9:12am

For the first time in its five year history, the Joan Mary Anderson Award has been won by a male student, Oliver Newman.

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Alex van der Weerden, on the frontiers of biochemistry research

Wednesday, 13 April 2022 2:46pm

Scholarship recipient a gifted young researcher who is a part of a team doing 'ground breaking' work investigating non-coding ribonucleic acid.

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Answers for families as researchers identify new rare genetic mutation

Wednesday, 9 March 2022 9:18am

University of Otago-led research has identified a new rare genetic mutation which will finally give families around the world answers as to what is affecting their loved one.