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Otago Medical School news archive

Making the homeless count

Thursday, 9 May 2019 12:02pm

When Dr Kate Amore began researching homelessness for her PhD at the University of Otago, Wellington, the country was in denial that the issue was even a problem, she says.

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Otago ethicist shines light on lack of discussion about body donation after euthanasia

Wednesday, 8 May 2019 10:01am

As New Zealand considers a bill looking to legalise euthanasia, an Otago University ethicist considers it’s time to shine the light on the ethical complications surrounding body donation and assisted dying.

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Otago bioarchaeologist’s 1,000-year-old discovery unravels clues about use of psychoactive plants for ritual purposes

Tuesday, 7 May 2019 12:17pm

An Otago bioarchaeologist was among a group of international archaeologists who made an exciting discovery of a “ritual bundle” in Bolivia and using chemical analysis helped unravel clues about the use of psychoactive plants for ritual purposes in the South American country a thousand years ago.

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Otago alumna behind UK Government’s move to help cerebral palsy children walk

Wednesday, 1 May 2019 8:32am

An Otago alumna has led a study into spinal surgery for children with cerebral palsy in the UK, which has proven it helps them walk and reduces pain, triggering the UK Government to fund the procedure.

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Urgent action needed to end our love affair with cars, report finds

Monday, 29 April 2019 3:50pm

The authors of a University of Otago report on active transport say urgent steps must be taken to encourage New Zealanders to walk, cycle or take public transport, with our use of cars harming both our health and our environment.

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Female-led team for Christchurch campus redevelopment

Monday, 29 April 2019 11:14am

In what is possibly a New Zealand first, the University’s largest ever construction project is being led by a team of women.

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He Kete Kōrero – Autumn 2019

Tuesday, 23 April 2019 9:56am

The Autumn 2019 edition of the University of Otago, Wellington newsletter

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Otago global health researchers to tackle tuberculosis in Indonesia

Wednesday, 17 April 2019 2:33pm

Researchers from the Otago Global Health Institute have secured funding from the e-Asia Joint Research Programme and the Health Research Council of New Zealand to help improve the management of tuberculosis (TB) in Indonesia.

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Wood is good, research on 1931 Hawke’s Bay earthquake shows

Tuesday, 16 April 2019 9:52am

New research has found that only three per cent of deaths in the 1931 Hawke’s Bay earthquake occurred in people’s homes, almost all of which were at that time constructed from wood.

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Discovery of oral cancer biomarkers could save thousands of lives

Tuesday, 16 April 2019 10:33am

Oral cancer is known for its high mortality rate in developing countries, but an international team of scientists hope its latest discovery will change that.

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Rising to the challenge - first Pacific graduate paves the way

Monday, 15 April 2019 9:50pm

Working across cultures and around the globe, Papali’i Dr Viopapa Annandale-Atherton has quietly forged a distinguished career in public health and as an advocate for women’s rights, helping pave the way for generations of Pacific Island medical students.

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Blending family therapy with creativity

Wednesday, 10 April 2019 12:31pm

Writing a children’s picture book for the families of premature babies has been a project close to the heart for author Julie Burgess-Manning, a lecturer in the Department of Psychological Medicine at the University of Otago, Wellington.

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US Fellowship and Harvard invite for Otago researcher

Tuesday, 9 April 2019 9:59pm

What happens to our healthcare records when we die?  It is a question few have pondered and Dr Jon Cornwall’s research on the topic has resulted in him being offered a Fellowship in the US and a speaking engagement at Harvard University to discuss the subject.

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Housing WOFs need to be combined with education, study shows

Tuesday, 9 April 2019 11:01am

Alongside funding and regulatory support, understanding how housing affects health and safety can spur owners to make improvements to their properties, researchers from the University of Otago, Wellington and WISE Better Homes have found.

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Study helps explain why some of our famous flightless birds can’t fly

Friday, 5 April 2019 10:02am

University of Otago researchers in association with colleagues from Harvard University have discovered new evidence of what made some of New Zealand’s iconic birds such as the kiwi and extinct moa, flightless.

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Plaudits for tobacco control group ASPIRE 2025

Friday, 5 April 2019 10:48pm

University of Otago research group ASPIRE 2025 has won praise from the Thoracic Society of Australia and New Zealand for its exemplary efforts and achievements in the field of smoking cessation and tobacco control.

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Opening of new Christchurch physiotherapy clinic

Wednesday, 3 April 2019 9:09pm

A new School of Physiotherapy clinic in Christchurch is officially open after a ceremony attended by Alumni and former Silver Ferns physiotherapist, Sharon Kearney.

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Otago researchers encourage New Zealanders to support Arms Amendment Bill

Wednesday, 3 April 2019 4:28pm

University of Otago firearms researchers are encouraging New Zealanders who are not gun owners to support MPs and political parties with the Arms Amendment Bill.

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Christchurch campus comes together to ‘share in each other’s warmth’

Tuesday, 26 March 2019 12:38pm

A week after the mosque shootings, Christchurch medical student Mohamud Osman stood in front of staff and fellow students and shared a story of love, kindness and forgiveness.

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Otago research shows alcohol consultation failing Māori communities

Tuesday, 26 March 2019 12:28pm

Local governments are failing to consult meaningfully with Māori when it comes to liquor licensing legislation, new research from the University of Otago has found.

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New pharmacy clinic aims to optimise pharmacotherapy and improve patients’ health

Friday, 22 March 2019 4:27pm

A new outpatient clinic in Dunedin to help patients manage multiple medications and improve their health – a joint venture between the University of Otago’s School of Pharmacy and Southern District Health Board – is believed to be the first of its kind in Australasia.

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Webster Family Chair in Pathogenesis appointment

Friday, 22 March 2019 9:50am

Following an extensive international search, Professor Miguel Quiñones-Mateu has been appointed as the second holder of the Webster Family Chair in Viral Pathogenesis in the University of Otago’s Department of Microbiology and Immunology, School of Biomedical Sciences.

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Christchurch staff coming together after mosque attacks

Thursday, 21 March 2019 1:22pm

The University of Otago, Christchurch’s main foyer has this week become a place to reflect, give and receive support, and share messages of condolence and support in a tribute book. It has also featured a table of baked goods made by medical students wanting to help nourish members of their campus community.

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Otago discovery paves way for precision medicine in future

Wednesday, 20 March 2019 9:45am

University of Otago scientists have discovered a way to view the immune cell 'landscape' of bowel cancer tumours, paving the way towards more individualised medicine and treatment for many other diseases in future.

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Otago researchers call for urgent law change

Sunday, 17 March 2019 12:25pm

Firearms law changes promised by the Prime Minister are long overdue, according to experts in the Department of Public Health, University of Otago, Wellington, Dr Marie Russell and Dr Hera Cook.

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Message from the Vice-Chancellor

Friday, 15 March 2019 2:15pm

The University of Otago community stands shoulder to shoulder with the Muslim community. Following the tragic events in Christchurch last Friday, several events are being held on the Dunedin campus on Thursday, 21 March.

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Otago bioethicist adds voice to global plea for moratorium on heritable genome editing

Thursday, 14 March 2019 9:24am

A University of Otago bioethicist has added his voice to a global plea for a moratorium on heritable genome editing from a group of international scientists and ethicists in the wake of the recent Chinese experiment aiming to produce HIV immune children.

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Measles information and advice from the Canterbury DHB

Wednesday, 13 March 2019 1:08pm

Measles is circulating widely in Canterbury. Information and advice is available for University of Otago, Christchurch staff and students.

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Number of poisoning-related deaths in New Zealand remain high

Tuesday, 12 March 2019 11:05am

While there has been a decline in carbon monoxide deaths in New Zealand, the number of deaths relating to poisoning remain high with new research revealing a surprising number of deaths involving two prescription medicines, zopiclone and clozapine.

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Liberal access to e-cigarettes likely to bring health benefits, NZ study finds

Tuesday, 12 March 2019 11:16am

New Zealand’s approach of allowing wide access to e-cigarettes is likely to be bringing overall health gains and cost savings for the health system, researchers from the University of Otago, Wellington have found.

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‘Invisible wounds’ may have cut WWII veterans’ lives short

Friday, 8 March 2019 9:08am

Kiwi men who were veterans of World War II appear to have had a shorter lifespan than other New Zealand men who were born at the same time, new research shows.

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Christchurch researcher representing New Zealand in taekwondo

Tuesday, 5 March 2019 4:57pm

Christchurch breast cancer researcher Dr Vanessa Lattimore will represent New Zealand at the taekwondo World Championships in Manchester this May.

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Sniffing out prostate cancer in New Zealand

Monday, 4 March 2019 9:47am

The University of Otago and K9 Medical Detection NZ are working together to investigate using dogs as a diagnostic tool to sniff out prostate cancer.

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New WHO housing and health guidelines could save millions each year

Monday, 25 February 2019 3:00pm

Preventable injuries and hospitalisations due solely to poor housing conditions in New Zealand could be costing more than $145 million annually in ACC claims and hospitalisation costs, according to new research.

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Train station signs send weak smokefree signal

Friday, 22 February 2019 9:58am

More than 20 per cent of the 54 railway stations in the lower North Island have no smokefree signs at all and many others have signs of poor quality, researchers from the University of Otago, Wellington have found.

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Are we closing the health gap?

Thursday, 21 February 2019 10:58am

Listen to Professor Louise Signal, Director of the Health Promotion and Policy Research Unit, participate in a radio panel interview considering progress in addressing health inequities.

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Improved food health standards linked to fewer cases of childhood gastroenteritis

Thursday, 21 February 2019 2:56pm

A University of Otago study reveals the incidence of non-viral gastroenteritis in New Zealand children has declined over the past 20 years with researchers concluding improved food health standards the key contributor.

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Are New Zealand’s giant birds of prey just exiled Aussies?

Wednesday, 20 February 2019 11:24am

An international team of researchers including scientists from the University of Otago and Canterbury Museum has brought new knowledge around how the world’s largest eagle came to live in New Zealand. The study published this week in “Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution” traces the Haast’s eagle back to Australia, but it was only after more than two million years of evolution in New Zealand that the bird became a global giant. 

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Surprise te reo Māori finding in pre-diabetes research

Monday, 18 February 2019 2:27pm

New research from the Healthier Lives National Science Challenge has found people who speak te reo Māori have a reduced risk of progressing from pre-diabetes to diabetes.

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Otago research reveals need to ensure drug trials for anxiety are carried out on appropriate patients

Tuesday, 12 February 2019 1:26pm

University of Otago psychiatry experts are concerned some medications used to treat anxiety may appear ineffective because they are not being tested in appropriate patients.

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New Zealand leads global effort to control rheumatic fever

Monday, 11 February 2019 4:20pm

A three-year project aimed at pinpointing the most effective ways to prevent and control rheumatic fever and associated heart disease in New Zealand is being launched tomorrow (Tuesday 12 February) at the University of Otago, Wellington.

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Christchurch Dean made a Fellow of the world’s oldest life science organisation

Thursday, 7 February 2019 9:21pm

The Dean of the University of Otago, Christchurch, has become a Fellow of the American Academy of Microbiology – only the fourth New Zealander to receive the honour. The Academy is the leadership group of the American Society for Microbiology, the world’s oldest and largest life science organisation.

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Otago academics question whether it is timely to salary GPs and abolish patient fees

Friday, 1 February 2019 9:39am

University of Otago academic health and business leaders consider it timely for a debate about funding primary healthcare services including the possibility of the Government salarying all GPs and abolishing patient fees.

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Cancer Society calls for an end to DHB-led cancer care

Thursday, 31 January 2019 9:15am

New Zealand is at a major crossroads in cancer care and the Cancer Society are calling on government to back a nationally-led, coordinated approach to cancer.

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Otago academic offers new explanation for Alexander the Great’s death

Tuesday, 22 January 2019 9:09am

It may have happened more than 2300 years ago, but the mystery of Alexander the Great’s death could finally be solved, thanks to a University of Otago academic.

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‘Choosing Wisely’ reduces unnecessary tests and antibiotic use, study finds

Tuesday, 22 January 2019 1:09pm

A Hutt Valley District Health Board campaign to cut the number of urine tests being carried out on hospital patients not only significantly reduced the number of unnecessary tests being ordered but also lowered the level of antibiotic prescribing, a study published in the New Zealand Medical Journal has found.

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Potential biotech and health applications with new knowledge on bacteria and viruses

Monday, 21 January 2019 2:29pm

University of Otago research to better understand how bacteria and their viruses interact and evolve will enable future studies to exploit the use of bacteria and their viruses for potential biotechnology and health applications.

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Kiwi teens have little knowledge of most effective contraceptives, Otago research reveals

Friday, 18 January 2019 10:11am

New Zealand adolescents have little knowledge of the most effective form of contraceptives, like implants and IUDs, and support the concept of an education programme about these long-acting reversible contraceptives to help prevent unintended teen pregnancies, University of Otago research has found.

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Proposal for ‘cautious path’ forward for changing cannabis laws by Otago researcher

Friday, 18 January 2019 9:57am

Amid the ongoing debate on legislation for recreational use of cannabis, an Otago researcher proposes a cautious path forward for changing cannabis laws in New Zealand that aims to reduce cannabis-related harm.

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University of Otago to study the impacts of mycoplasma bovis on farmers and their communities

Wednesday, 16 January 2019 10:45am

The University of Otago will carry out a study on the emotional, social and psychological impacts of mycoplasma bovis on Southern farmers and farming communities.

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High intake of dietary fibre and whole grain foods reduces risk of non-communicable diseases

Friday, 11 January 2019 12:39pm

University of Otago researchers have found a link between higher intakes of dietary fibre and whole grain foods and a reduction in the risk of a wide range of non-communicable diseases and their risk factors.

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One plus one equals more than two for health expenditure in patients with multiple conditions, study finds

Wednesday, 9 January 2019 1:27pm

Caring for patients with two or more chronic diseases costs the health system more than it would to treat each disease in isolation, a new study has shown.

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Otago study highlights problems predicting suicide

Friday, 21 December 2018 4:09pm

A University of Otago study examining the ability of measures to predict death-by-suicide highlights multiple problems with current mental health treatment models.

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Christchurch Professor given medical profession’s highest accolade

Tuesday, 18 December 2018 10:46am

Bowel cancer surgeon and University of Otago, Christchurch researcher Professor Frank Frizelle has been awarded the New Zealand medical profession’s highest accolade.

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He Kete Kōrero – Summer 2018

Tuesday, 18 December 2018 2:00pm

The Summer 2018 edition of the University of Otago, Wellington newsletter

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Probiotic gives long-standing protection against childhood eczema, study finds

Monday, 17 December 2018 1:05pm

Giving a probiotic supplement to pregnant mothers and their infants significantly reduces the chances of a child developing eczema for the first 11 years of their life, researchers have shown.

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Call for pandemic research fund as “living memorial” to 1918 flu victims

Friday, 14 December 2018 9:11am

Professors from the Department of Public Health at the University of Otago, Wellington are calling on the government to set up a research fund to help prevent pandemics and increase New Zealand’s preparedness to deal with such disasters.

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Two winning teams from TRG competition

Thursday, 13 December 2018 10:14pm

Two winning teams have emerged from this year’s University of Otago Translational Research Grant (TRG) competition – one in Dunedin and one in Christchurch.

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Otago graduate influential in Africa

Thursday, 13 December 2018 9:05am

The first PhD student to graduate from the University of Otago’s Centre for International Health (CIH) has been named the most influential woman in the education and training sector of business and government in part of Africa.

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First nationwide study of listeria in mothers and babies

Wednesday, 12 December 2018 11:56am

The first study of the burden of listeria in pregnant New Zealanders and their babies has found reassuringly low rates of the infection – indicating food safety warnings are working to prevent unnecessary cases of miscarriage, still birth, and meningitis in babies infected in the womb.

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Licence to Swill: James Bond’s drinking over six decades

Monday, 10 December 2018 1:17pm

He may be licensed to kill but fictional British secret service agent James Bond has a severe alcohol use disorder, according to an analysis of his drinking behaviour published in the Medical Journal of Australia’s Christmas issue.

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Study examines impact of alcohol policy change on hazardous drinking habits at Otago

Friday, 7 December 2018 11:41am

A study spanning ten years has found alcohol policy reform implemented by the University of Otago probably contributed to a change in the drinking culture of the student population.

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Otago study forces a rethink on population history of Ibiza

Thursday, 6 December 2018 11:17am

Otago researchers have discovered a rare case of genetic population discontinuity on the Mediterranean Island of Ibiza. Essentially, the original genetic signature of the founding female population, handed down through centuries on Ibiza has been replaced, prompting a change in understanding of the island’s genetic history.

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Otago researchers discover information about a gene that helps define us as humans

Thursday, 6 December 2018 9:11am

University of Otago researchers have discovered information about a gene that sets primates – great apes and humans – apart from other mammals, through the study of a rare developmental brain disorder.

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Māori health professional graduand numbers soar to new heights

Wednesday, 5 December 2018 9:08am

The number of University of Otago Māori health professional graduands has climbed to an historic high.

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Patients prescribed medications for longer than recommended - at a cost

Wednesday, 5 December 2018 11:05am

Almost half of patients are being prescribed common medications for longer than recommended, putting them at unnecessary risk of harmful side effects, new research shows.

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Otago researchers discover a promising therapy for improving heart attack survivorship

Tuesday, 4 December 2018 9:14am

In pre-clinical trials, University of Otago researchers have discovered a promising new therapy that has the potential to be used clinically for improving survival rates for people who suffer a heart attack.

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Cycle lanes and walkways cut car use, reduce emissions, study finds

Monday, 3 December 2018 3:32pm

Researchers have shown for the first time that investing in cycle lanes and walkways encourages people to drive less and cuts carbon emissions.

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Pain common and increasing in prevalence in New Zealand

Friday, 30 November 2018 9:19am


Pain is an extremely common condition and increasing in prevalence in New Zealand, University of Otago researchers say.

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Too many dementia patients prescribed potentially inappropriate drugs – Otago finds

Thursday, 29 November 2018 9:45am

Older adults diagnosed with dementia are frequently being prescribed potentially inappropriate medications, which leaves them at risk of delirium, worsening cognitive impairment, and increased mortality, a University of Otago study has found.

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Research by Otago graduate highlights magnitude of gender disparity in cardiology

Wednesday, 28 November 2018 9:15am

While increasing numbers of medical graduates are female, new research led by an Otago Medical School graduate highlights the magnitude of gender disparity in cardiology.

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Otago invention helps patients manage Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Friday, 23 November 2018 9:20am


As increasing numbers of New Zealanders are being diagnosed with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), University of Otago researchers have developed a smartphone application (app) proven to be as effective as clinical care in helping patients manage their disease.

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True burden of rheumatic fever in NZ currently underestimated, new research reveals

Thursday, 22 November 2018 5:05pm

The true burden of rheumatic fever in New Zealand may be underestimated because serology cut-off guidelines are too high resulting in undercounting about 16 cases annually, new collaborative research has found.

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Otago health researchers share more than $3.5m in Career Development Awards

Tuesday, 20 November 2018 9:19am

A University of Otago Christchurch engineer is developing  a ‘lego’ system to 3D-bioprint bone; a solution that could one day replace the billions-of-dollars-worth of ceramic and titanium implants required by New Zealand patients annually.

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The challenge of reducing health inequities and improving health outcomes in New Zealand

Monday, 19 November 2018 2:21pm

The Healthier Lives – He Oranga Hauora National Science Challenge, hosted by the University of Otago,  welcomes the announcement from the Minister of Research, Science and Innovation Hon Megan Woods,  confirming funding for its 2019-2024 research strategy

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Otago graduate helps separate conjoined twins

Friday, 16 November 2018 8:54pm

A mix of relief, pride and protectiveness is how paediatric surgeon and Otago graduate Dr Michael Nightingale feels after being part of the team to successfully separate conjoined twins in Melbourne last week.

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Otago scientists’ contributions recognised nationally

Friday, 16 November 2018 9:18am

Three University of Otago scientists have been recognised for their significant contributions to New Zealand’s science community with awards from the New Zealand Association of Scientists.

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Proposal for National School of Rural Health remains firmly on the table

Friday, 16 November 2018 9:21am

The University of Otago remains committed to the collaborative proposal for a National Interprofessional School of Rural Health.

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Otago research highlights need for spirituality to be integrated into the health system

Wednesday, 14 November 2018 4:11pm

Spiritual care must be integrated into health system care plans, policies and training in order to reflect national guidelines and strategies more effectively, according to University of Otago researchers.

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UK Fleming Prize to Otago microbiologist

Tuesday, 13 November 2018 4:43pm

A University of Otago molecular microbiologist, Associate Professor Peter Fineran, has been awarded the United Kingdom Microbiology Society’s 2019 Fleming Prize.

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Christchurch PhD student named in Black Sticks

Tuesday, 13 November 2018 9:08pm

University of Otago, Christchurch postgraduate student Leah Butt has been selected for New Zealand’s national hockey team, the Black Sticks. 

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Boost in training health professionals rurally under ‘virtual’ school proposal

Friday, 9 November 2018 4:14pm

The National Interprofessional School of Rural Health that has been proposed recently is not a separate education provider, but rather an “enabling body” that would lever off the expertise of the existing tertiary institutions to undertake more teaching and research in rural communities, working in partnership with local health services.

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Driving anxiety experienced by many older adults, new research reveals

Monday, 5 November 2018 9:15am

Driving anxiety is experienced by many older adults in New Zealand, especially among women and those aged over 70, recent collaborative research shows.

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Sobering insights into alcohol marketing and Māori children

Thursday, 1 November 2018 9:07am

Innovative camera research has revealed that New Zealand children are exposed to alcohol marketing in their residential and school neighbourhoods. The collaborative research by the Universities of Otago and Auckland, found children’s exposure to alcohol marketing was higher in neighbourhoods with greater numbers of alcohol outlets and for Māori participants.

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Most Kiwis support some form of euthanasia or assisted dying, Otago review reveals

Thursday, 1 November 2018 9:21am

Most New Zealanders support some form of euthanasia or assisted dying, a review of 20 years’ research into Kiwis’ attitudes to euthanasia by University of Otago researchers reveals.

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Professor Tony Blakely wins 2018 Chaffer Medal

Thursday, 1 November 2018 12:32pm

One of the country’s leading epidemiologists and public health researchers has been awarded this year’s Chaffer Medal for distinguished performance in health research.

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Otago’s NEXT magazine Woman of the Year

Wednesday, 31 October 2018 2:33pm

Professor Philippa Howden-Chapman of the Department of Public Health at the University of Otago, Wellington, stepped into a world of unaccustomed glitz and glamour when she was judged NEXT magazine’s 2018 Woman of the Year at the Cordis Hotel in Auckland earlier this month.

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Cutting societal alcohol use may prevent alcohol disorders developing – Otago research reveals

Wednesday, 31 October 2018 11:14am

Society must take collective responsibility to reduce the harm caused by alcohol use disorders, a University of Otago academic says.

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WWI cast a long shadow over New Zealanders’ health, study finds

Tuesday, 30 October 2018 10:42am

World War I cast such a long shadow over New Zealand that the health and social impacts continued through to the next generation, public health researchers say.

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Increasing alcohol tax could benefit health and save money for society – NZ study

Monday, 29 October 2018 12:52pm

Increasing the excise tax on alcohol would likely result in fewer people dying or being injured in vehicle crashes – and generate savings for society, according to a just-published New Zealand study.

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Study investigates link between loneliness and age in elderly New Zealanders

Monday, 29 October 2018 11:35am

Loneliness is associated with reduced quality of life and morbidity and mortality and typically worsens with aging. Loneliness may be considered a public health hazard because of its association with a wide range of conditions, including hypertension, cardiovascular disease, cerebrovascular disease, Alzheimer disease, depression and insomnia.

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Kiwis failing to slip into shade and slap on a hat for sun protection, researchers find

Friday, 26 October 2018 10:44am

An alarming proportion of New Zealanders are neither wearing hats nor seeking shade to protect themselves from the sun, University of Otago research reveals.

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Portrait of Peter Crampton unveiled

Thursday, 25 October 2018 12:52pm

A portrait of Professor Peter Crampton – painted to celebrate his contribution to the Otago Medical School and the Division of Health Sciences – was unveiled at a gathering at the Hunter Centre yesterday.

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Otago scientist receives prestigious Fellowship to further gout research

Thursday, 25 October 2018 9:11am

One of the country’s leading scientists in the area of gout and metabolic disease, University of Otago Professor Tony Merriman, is one of three researchers nationally to receive a prestigious James Cook Fellowship.

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Irish Famine victims’ heavy smoking led to dental decay, new research reveals

Wednesday, 24 October 2018 9:16am

Irish Famine victims were heavy smokers which caused badly rotten teeth, researchers from the University of Otago and Queen’s University Belfast, in Ireland, have discovered.

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Flavoured capsule cigarettes pose a threat to smokefree goals

Tuesday, 23 October 2018 9:17am

New research from ASPIRE2025, a University of Otago research theme, challenges tobacco companies’ claims they are working towards a smokefree world and suggests young people are vulnerable to tobacco companies’ product innovations.

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Unprecedented success for Otago at the NZ Research Honours Awards

Thursday, 18 October 2018 10:22pm

The University has had unprecedented success at the New Zealand Research Honours Awards this year, taking home one quarter of the awards on offer.

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New blood test may help rule out heart attack within 15 minutes

Thursday, 18 October 2018 2:12pm

A preliminary study of a new, quick and accurate, bedside blood test performed in Emergency Departments (ED) could help reduce the time it takes to rule out heart attacks. The study findings have been published this morning in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA Cardiology).

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Six Otago researchers recognised in NZ research honours

Thursday, 18 October 2018 9:12am

University of Otago Research Fellow Helen Taylor’s science communication around conservation genetics and threatened species has earned her recognition at this year’s New Zealand Research Honours.

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Otago researcher takes genomic sequencing to the farm to help transform lives

Tuesday, 16 October 2018 11:22am

In a world first, international scientists including a University of Otago researcher, have used whole genome sequencing to help diagnose a plant pathogen destroying crops on African farms, potentially paving the way for preventing crop failures, vital to the African economy.

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Recognition for rising research stars

Monday, 15 October 2018 9:27pm

Six rising research stars at the University of Otago have been recognised through the University’s annual Early Career Awards for Distinction in Research announced today.

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Otago research aims to explain high testicular cancer rates in Māori

Friday, 12 October 2018 4:56pm

A new University of Otago study is aiming to tackle why Māori men have abnormally higher rates of testicular cancer compared to their non-Māori counterparts.

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Otago research shows diet has little influence on precursor to gout

Thursday, 11 October 2018 10:02am

Dietary factors have a far smaller influence on urate levels (a precursor to gout) than previously envisaged, new University of Otago research reveals.

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Researchers call for end to fat stigma

Thursday, 11 October 2018 1:44pm

Researchers are using World Obesity Day today to call for an end to the stigma which fat people experience in their daily lives.

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Otago scientists investigate monkey malaria threat as potential therapy

Wednesday, 10 October 2018 8:58am

A breakthrough in monkey malaria research by University of Otago scientists encouraged the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to fund a special meeting in Dunedin recently.

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University of Otago, Christchurch releases first study of migrant sex workers

Wednesday, 10 October 2018 9:46am

The majority of migrant sex workers in New Zealand who participated in new University of Otago research, are in safe employment situations and working to fund study or travel rather than being desperate, exploited or trafficked, the research shows.

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University of Otago to develop Education Centre at Southland Hospital

Friday, 5 October 2018 4:34pm

The University of Otago is developing a new $1.5 million education and research centre at its Southland campus in Invercargill, in partnership with the Southern District Health Board.

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Research reveals diagnosis delays and at risk populations for bowel cancer in NZ

Friday, 5 October 2018 12:44pm


There are often delays in diagnosis for New Zealanders with bowel cancer with people aged under 60, Māori and those with less formal education most at risk, new research reveals.

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Alcohol still impacting ED despite legislation aimed at curbing harm

Friday, 5 October 2018 12:05pm

Numbers of alcohol-impaired and injured people coming to Christchurch’s emergency department (ED) remained the same between 2013 and 2107 despite legislation aimed at reducing harm, new research shows.

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Obituary: Emeritus Professor David Fergusson remembered

Friday, 5 October 2018 11:01am

Staff across the University, particularly those based at the University’s Christchurch campus, are remembering Emeritus Professor David Murray Fergusson, who passed away overnight on Wednesday, aged 74.

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Emerging Otago researchers win Fellowships worth $3.2 million

Thursday, 4 October 2018 12:06pm

Three highly-promising University of Otago researchers and another recently departed from the university, have been awarded Rutherford Discovery Fellowships worth $3.2 million by the Royal Society Te Apārangi.

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Education and support for menstrual periods needed at primary school

Wednesday, 3 October 2018 10:30am

Primary school is the correct place to educate girls about periods and provide sanitary bins and pads, say University of Otago researchers.

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Otago discovery links DNA-packaging proteins and cancer development

Thursday, 27 September 2018 2:30pm

University of Otago scientists have unravelled the 3D structure of two proteins, potentially providing answers as to why some people may be at risk of developing specific cancers.

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New admissions test announced for future healthcare students

Monday, 24 September 2018 3:25pm

A group of leading universities in Australia and New Zealand, including the Universities of Otago and Auckland, are embarking on an exciting new collaboration with similar universities in the United Kingdom. 

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No increased risk of lung infections among infants using popular anti-reflux medicines

Tuesday, 18 September 2018 10:16am

New University of Otago research shows infants using popular anti-reflux medicines like omeprazole are not at increased risk of pneumonia or other lower respiratory tract infections, contrary to findings from other international studies.

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Otago scientists secure almost $1.6 million for heart research

Monday, 17 September 2018 12:20pm

Otago scientists secure almost $1.6 million for heart research

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University of Otago to construct new $150 million building in Christchurch

Friday, 14 September 2018 4:43pm

The University of Otago has announced plans to construct a new state-of-the-art building to expand its Christchurch campus, making an important contribution to the Health Precinct as part of the city’s rebuild.

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New building for Christchurch campus

Friday, 14 September 2018 9:00am

The University of Otago has announced it will construct a new state-of-the-art building to expand its Christchurch health campus.

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Influential teachers celebrated at Dunedin School of Medicine

Thursday, 13 September 2018 10:30pm

Award-winning teachers from Dunedin and Invercargill were reminded that their influence extends well beyond the classroom, during the 2018 Dunedin School of Medicine (DSM) teaching awards held yesterday afternoon.

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Otago scientists awarded major funding for innovative research

Thursday, 13 September 2018 2:48pm

University of Otago research leader Professor Richard Blaikie has received almost $1 million in Government funding to develop a cost-effective solution for large-scale production of hydrogen gas, a potential source of energy as an alternative to fossil fuel.

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Otago researchers find answers as to why some people are at risk of gout

Wednesday, 12 September 2018 11:33am

University of Otago researchers have helped characterise a genetic variant that enables new understanding of why some people are at risk of gout, a painful and debilitating arthritic disease.

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How overmedication is injuring and killing our elderly: a world-first study

Tuesday, 11 September 2018 3:04pm

Elderly taking multiple high-risk medications for sleeping, pain or incontinence are twice as likely as others to fall and break bones, with many dying within a year of their injury, new research shows.

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Transgender community honoured to help Otago teaching

Tuesday, 11 September 2018 1:26pm

Members of Dunedin’s transgender community who have been working with Otago academics say they hope that because of their help, other transgender people will be met with a more capable and understanding healthcare system.

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Potential for less smoking with new tobacco retailer restrictions, Otago research shows

Thursday, 6 September 2018 4:02pm

Changing the way tobacco is sold is a crucial step in achieving the Government’s 2025 smokefree goal, new University of Otago research suggests.

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Tackling diet-related disease in New Zealand

Monday, 3 September 2018 9:54am

Unhealthy diet is the leading preventable risk for poor health in New Zealand. Diet-related diseases (and how we manage them) is becoming a pressing issue for the country.

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Brief sleep intervention works long-term to prevent child obesity – Otago discovers

Monday, 3 September 2018 9:39am

When it comes to obesity prevention, sleep is not usually something that springs to mind, but a University of Otago research team has found we should not underestimate its importance.

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Mongrel Mob open up to Otago researchers for the good of their health

Wednesday, 29 August 2018 10:02am

Studying the liver health of a high-risk, hard-to-reach gang population certainly came with challenges and a few surprises, a University of Otago academic says.

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Otago scientist urges NZ to lead the way in eliminating top infectious disease killer

Wednesday, 29 August 2018 9:45am

A University of Otago doctor and scientist is calling on New Zealand to be the first country in the world to eliminate tuberculosis (TB), the top infectious disease killer in the world.

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Otago scientist wins award for cancer research

Monday, 27 August 2018 3:35pm

University of Otago scientist Dr Andrew Das has won the Roche Translational Cancer Research Fellowship to further his work as part of a research team investigating the role of epigenetics in leukaemia.

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Otago experts question use of consultants who worked for tobacco industry in NZ tobacco review

Friday, 24 August 2018 2:31pm

University of Otago researchers believe Government actions may be inconsistent with its tobacco treaty obligations by employing a consulting firm that has worked globally for the tobacco industry, to advise on tobacco taxation.

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Honing in on the key ingredients for successful self-management of chronic pain

Friday, 24 August 2018 2:19pm

The outlook for the one in five New Zealanders with persistent or chronic pain has the potential to be more positive according to an extensive study review by researchers from the School of Physiotherapy, University of Otago, Wellington (UOW) and Pain Management Service, Capital Coast District Health Board.

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New Zealanders using more antipsychotics, especially older females

Friday, 17 August 2018 10:11am

The prescription of drugs designed to treat conditions such as bipolar disorder and schizophrenia, and symptoms such as hallucinations and delusions has increased in New Zealand by almost 50 per cent in less than a decade, according to the first local study of its kind.

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Christchurch bowel cancer surgeon recognised for global leadership

Monday, 13 August 2018 11:57am

University of Otago, Christchurch bowel cancer researcher Professor Frank Frizelle has been awarded an honorary fellowship from the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland.

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Closing NZ’s border in severe pandemics cost-effective – New study

Thursday, 9 August 2018 7:20am

Closing the border may make sense for New Zealand in some extreme pandemic situations, according to a newly published study of the costs and benefits of taking this step.

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3MT finals showcase up-and-coming talent

Wednesday, 8 August 2018 10:24am

A PhD candidate who is investigating the emotional responses of clinicians who deal with suicidal patients has won the PhD category of Otago’s 2018 Three Minute Thesis (3MT) competition.

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Otago demonstrates its commitment to rural health with new ‘virtual campus’

Tuesday, 7 August 2018 11:32am

The University of Otago has reiterated its commitment to training and education in rural health with the establishment of a new Section of Rural Health, believed to be the first dedicated rural health unit currently operating within a New Zealand tertiary institution.

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Opinion: Healthy environment the foundation of suicide prevention

Friday, 3 August 2018 12:47pm

Dr John Adams and Professor Sunny Collings take a look at student mental health and suicide prevention.

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Otago researcher claims new study a step forward in fight to eliminate tuberculosis

Thursday, 2 August 2018 9:36am

The McAuley Professor of International Health at the University of Otago is labelling the findings of new international collaborative research a step forward in the fight to eliminate the world’s top infectious disease killer, tuberculosis.

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Otago researcher secures funding for therapy to help prevent disorders in preterm babies

Wednesday, 1 August 2018 10:09am

A University of Otago researcher has received funding from the Neurological Foundation of New Zealand to investigate a new therapy which could potentially prevent disorders developing in children born prematurely.

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Anywhere, anytime: New Zealand children’s exposure to alcohol marketing

Tuesday, 31 July 2018 10:56am

Innovative camera research has revealed New Zealand children are exposed to alcohol marketing on average 4.5 times per day.

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Otago researchers signal time for Government action on reducing alcohol-related harm

Friday, 27 July 2018 9:40am

University of Otago experts in addiction medicine and the health effects of alcohol are questioning what the barriers are to Government action on reducing alcohol-related harm and calling for change.

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He Kete Kōrero – Winter 2018

Thursday, 26 July 2018 10:43am

The Winter 2018 edition of the University of Otago, Wellington newsletter

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Funding for Otago breast cancer research which aims to halt cancer spread

Wednesday, 25 July 2018 9:33am

A University of Otago researcher has been awarded $133,263 to investigate opportunities to halt the spread of cancer in women suffering breast cancer, thereby improving patient survival.

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Otago-led research cites faulty science and ethics in DNA analyses of ‘Ata’

Wednesday, 18 July 2018 9:15am

University of Otago-led international collaborative research calls into question the ethics and skeletal and genomic analysis surrounding research into the much publicised alien-like “Atacama mummy”.

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New findings for ‘gifted’ Otago geneticist  diagnosing rare genetic disorders

Monday, 16 July 2018 1:41pm

Recent research undertaken by University of Otago Cure Kids Professor Paediatric Genetics, Stephen Robertson, highlights the world-leading discoveries he is making regarding rare genetic disorders affecting children and the opportunity genomic analysis is providing.

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Regular teen drinking leads to problems with alcohol and drug use in adulthood

Wednesday, 11 July 2018 7:29am

Adolescents who drink weekly before age 17 are up to three times more likely as adults to binge drink, drink drive, be alcohol-dependent, and use other drugs than their non-drinking peers, new Australasian research shows.

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First human scanned with next-generation 3D colour scanner invented by Cantabrians

Tuesday, 10 July 2018 9:12am

The first human has been scanned with a revolutionary new 3D colour medical scanner invented in New Zealand by father and son scientists from the Universities of Canterbury and Otago.

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Major fundamental changes required to achieve health equity

Monday, 9 July 2018 9:15am

In comparing efforts to address health inequities, researchers in Aotearoa/New Zealand (NZ) and the United States (US) have found that both countries are failing to align policy with evidence-based approaches that could help achieve equity.

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Junk food dominates NZ sport

Monday, 9 July 2018 9:03am

Junk food dominates New Zealand sport venues, according to new research led by the University of Otago, Wellington.

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Otago research reveals alarming rise of obesity in New Zealand

Thursday, 5 July 2018 8:38am

The Body Mass Index (BMI) of New Zealanders is continuing to rise and on current trends, two million New Zealanders will be considered clinically obese by 2038 up from 1.1 million in 2015, new University of Otago research reveals.

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New drugs to treat top infectious disease killer a possibility with Otago discovery

Wednesday, 4 July 2018 7:26am

University of Otago researchers have discovered a novel property of a new anti-tuberculosis drug which may help develop more drugs to treat the top infectious disease killer in the world.

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DSM's palliative care education in the spotlight

Tuesday, 3 July 2018 2:48pm

Lis Latta

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Otago scientists make breakthrough in childhood kidney cancer

Tuesday, 3 July 2018 7:44am

A world-first discovery by University of Otago scientists may change the way children suffering from a rare form of kidney cancer are treated.

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Otago researchers’ discovery unlocks secrets behind cancer drug resistance

Friday, 29 June 2018 2:15pm

University of Otago research provides insights into an underlying mechanism that could explain why new cancer therapies to help treat metastatic melanoma do not always work on patients, paving the way for predicting which patients will benefit from certain drugs.

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Otago researchers help find answers to growing typhoid problem in the Pacific

Tuesday, 26 June 2018 9:45am

University of Otago researchers have been key partners in a study which has found poor sanitation facilities appear to be a major source of Salmonella Typhi, the cause of typhoid fever, in Fiji.

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Multimorbidity impacts on employment and financial wellbeing, Otago report shows

Monday, 25 June 2018 11:56am

Multimorbidity has a substantial impact on sufferers who report not only poorer health but also adverse impacts on their employment and financial wellbeing compared to the general population, new University of Otago research reveals.

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Preparing for increased stroke volumes in New Zealand

Friday, 22 June 2018 10:49am

Although the incidence of stroke and mortality are declining due to better management strategies, stroke volumes are going up in New Zealand due to a growing and ageing population.

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Smokefree 2025: An opportunity for big scores by the Government

Friday, 22 June 2018 10:17am

A group of tobacco control experts today published an open letter in the New Zealand Medical Journal calling for bold new actions from the New Zealand Government to achieve the Smokefree 2025 goal.

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$5 million boost for Otago team’s quest to restore fertility in women with disabling ovary disorder

Friday, 22 June 2018 9:58am

A University of Otago research team whose ultimate goal is to restore fertility in women suffering Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS), has received a significant boost with an almost $5 million grant from the Health Research Council.

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Reduction in HIV diagnoses in New Zealand

Wednesday, 20 June 2018 10:03am

There has been a significant reduction in the number of people diagnosed with HIV in New Zealand over the past year.

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$4.4 million awarded to DSM researchers in HRC funding

Monday, 18 June 2018 1:21pm

Dunedin School of Medicine warmly congratulates our outstanding researchers on their HRC funding success

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Scientists identify bug likely to cause bowel cancer

Monday, 18 June 2018 2:31pm

New Zealand scientists have identified a toxic bug they believe may cause bowel cancer and could lead to a life-saving vaccine or early detection test for the too-often deadly disease.

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Almost $19 million awarded to Otago researchers in Health Research Council funding

Monday, 18 June 2018 10:21am

A new study investigating for the first time the health of occupants of leaky homes in New Zealand is one of many University of Otago-led projects being funded this year by the Health Research Council to the tune of almost $19 million.

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Vitamin C trialled as life-saving treatment intensive care patients with sepsis

Tuesday, 12 June 2018 2:04pm

University of Otago, Christchurch researchers are teaming up with intensive care specialists to study whether intravenous infusions of vitamin C could be a life-saving treatment for patients with sepsis.

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Otago researchers help unlock answers about leptospirosis in Africa

Monday, 11 June 2018 10:45am

University of Otago researchers are helping lead international studies which have discovered that exposure to cattle and rice farming are risk factors for the devastating disease leptospirosis in northern Tanzania.

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Hunt for Nessie captures hearts and minds

Wednesday, 6 June 2018 11:14pm

Otago’s Professor Neil Gemmell is now in Scotland, with teams of international media waiting to follow his every move as he searches for DNA evidence of the Loch Ness Monster.

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Medical students striving to be more socially accountable

Tuesday, 5 June 2018 11:12pm

Student representatives from the country’s two medical schools recently met to share ideas on how the medical curriculum can become more socially accountable to ensure medical students become competent doctors, advocates and agents of change in society.

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Unit to provide statistical support to staff, students

Tuesday, 5 June 2018 1:27pm

No statistical survey will ever be perfect, the director of the University of Otago’s biostatistics unit, Robin Turner, says.

However, health surveys carried out by Otago staff and students will hopefully be as close to perfect as they can thanks to the work of the biostatistics unit.

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New Zealand leads call to improve health for indigenous people globally

Friday, 1 June 2018 3:59pm

An open letter published today in a leading international medical journal, Lancet Oncology, calls on the World Health Organization (WHO) and Governments to prioritise health improvements for Indigenous peoples worldwide.

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Father and son celebrate joint success

Friday, 1 June 2018 10:54am

Greymouth GP Greville Wood and his son shared their graduation ceremonies from Otago University last weekend

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Health Research Excellence Awards celebrate staff

Thursday, 31 May 2018 9:22pm

University of Otago Curekids Professor of Paediatric Genetics Stephen Robertson is considered an outstanding leader in his field internationally, and last night his achievements were formally recognised closer to home at the Health Research Excellence Awards in Dunedin.

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Researchers and clinicians honoured in Health Research Excellence Awards

Wednesday, 30 May 2018 8:03am

A novel idea by Dunedin Hospital clinicians to use naturalistic light to improve patients’ sleep quality, recovery and well-being received a $100,000 grant at this evening’s Health Research Excellence Awards.

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Cold New Zealand council housing getting an upgrade

Wednesday, 30 May 2018 11:17am

University of Otago, Wellington researchers are advocating for standards to bring all New Zealand housing up to the World Health Organization minimum standard which recommends indoor temperature of 18 degrees celcius.

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Children, students embrace Teddy Bear Hospital

Tuesday, 29 May 2018 2:18pm

Dunedin’s toy population is on track to be fit and healthy over winter thanks to the University of Otago’s Teddy Bear Hospital.

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Cannabis: What's the harm?

Friday, 25 May 2018 9:15am

A researcher of the effects of cannabis says any law change to free up the drug’s availability needs to take account of scientifically-robust data showing regular use in young people is associated with a higher risk of mental health issues, use of other substances, and lower levels of achievement.

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Otago University-led Citizens’ Jury highlights complexity around euthanasia debate

Thursday, 24 May 2018 10:59am

A University of Otago-led Citizens’ Jury on euthanasia could not reach agreement about whether it should be legalised, highlighting complexities around the debate.

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Otago research finds a little exercise does a lot of good for ageing muscles

Thursday, 24 May 2018 10:16am

Getting old doesn’t necessarily mean getting weak and frail – just a little bit of exercise can help maintain muscle mass and strength, Otago research has revealed.

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$750,000 to Otago researchers for health-related feasibility studies

Tuesday, 22 May 2018 3:33pm

Three University of Otago researchers have successfully secured almost $750,000 between them from the Health Research Council to undertake feasibility studies.

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Pelvic pain a major issue for women nearing mid-life, Otago research reveals

Tuesday, 22 May 2018 10:12am

Many women nearing mid-life suffer some form of pelvic pain like period pain, or pain with sex however, pregnancy and childbirth appears to offer some protection, latest findings from the University of Otago's Dunedin Multidisciplinary Health and Development Study reveal.

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Education key to hauora and success

Monday, 21 May 2018 10:04am

A Christchurch medical student is playing a key role in a Ngāi Tahu-backed initiative to keep rangatahi (youth) from the West Coast in education.

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Otago scientist set to tackle the mystery of Loch Ness

Monday, 21 May 2018 2:58pm

The story of the Loch Ness monster is one of the world’s greatest mysteries. We have waited more than a thousand years for an answer on its existence. Now, it is only months away.

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Otago researcher’s dream of eliminating Tuberculosis among Māori gains HRC support

Monday, 21 May 2018 3:23pm

The goal of eliminating the top infectious disease killer in the world, tuberculosis, among Māori has earned University of Otago researcher Professor Philip Hill $250,000 from the Health Research Council to undertake a feasibility study.

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Warning labels on alcohol containers highly deficient, new research shows

Monday, 21 May 2018 2:23pm

Current health warning labels on alcohol beverage containers in New Zealand are highly deficient, new research from the University of Otago, Wellington shows.

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Obesity a tough topic for GPs, Otago research reveals

Friday, 18 May 2018 9:11am

New University of Otago research highlights the difficulties for GPs of discussing obesity with patients who are overweight and signals the need for resources to support them and other community health providers in this role.

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New ideas for detecting cancer get go-ahead from HRC

Thursday, 17 May 2018 4:47pm

A University of Otago researcher focused on the earlier detection of cancer has just secured her first significant grant from the Health Research Council, valued at $249,984, for her novel proposal for diagnosing bowel cancer.

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HRC funding enables Otago researcher to investigate early detection test for bowel cancer

Thursday, 17 May 2018 7:59am

A researcher aiming to develop an early-detection genetic-based test for bowel cancer is one of several University of Otago researchers who have been awarded almost $1.5 million in Health Research Council funding.

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Radical new framework for trade and investment treaties

Monday, 14 May 2018 12:44pm

A team from the University of Otago, Wellington has just published a radical new framework for designing international trade and investment treaties.

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Exposure to second-hand smoke doubles rates of asthma and wheezing in infants

Friday, 11 May 2018 9:42am

In a New Zealand first, University of Otago, Christchurch, researchers have analysed nicotine levels in infants’ hair to get a true measure of the impact of passive smoking on respiratory problems.

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Gaps in patient care pathway may perpetuate high rates of sexually transmitted infections

Wednesday, 9 May 2018 10:21am

There are gaps between best practice and documented management of patients diagnosed with sexually transmitted infections in primary care, which may contribute to high rates of infection, new University of Otago research shows.

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Otago scientist involved in new tool to classify severity of Salmonella

Wednesday, 9 May 2018 9:21am

A University of Otago expert is part of an international collaboration that has created a new machine learning tool that can detect whether emerging strains of the bacterium Salmonella are more likely to cause life-threatening bloodstream infections rather than only food poisoning.

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News of inner-city site for new Dunedin Hospital welcomed

Friday, 4 May 2018 1:29pm

University of Otago leaders are pleased Cabinet has approved an inner-city Dunedin location with close proximity to the University precinct, on which to build the city’s new $1.2 to $1.4 billion hospital.

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University of Otago welcomes selection of inner-city site for new Dunedin Hospital

Friday, 4 May 2018 1:30pm

The University of Otago is pleased Cabinet has approved an inner-city Dunedin location with close proximity to the University precinct on which to build the new Dunedin Hospital.

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Prescribing guidelines not always followed for patients on cholesterol-lowering drug

Friday, 4 May 2018 10:40am

New Zealand prescribers do not always follow guidelines when prescribing other medicines to patients taking simvastatin, according to University of Otago researchers from the Pharmacoepidemiology Research Network. 

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Study aiming to improve New Zealand’s low breastfeeding rates

Thursday, 3 May 2018 1:24pm

University of Otago, Wellington (UOW) researchers are leading a new collaborative study to find out why New Zealand breastfeeding rates are so low and even dropping.

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Genetic research reveals new insights into severe childhood epilepsy

Tuesday, 1 May 2018 4:16pm

In a new study on children with severe forms of epilepsy, researchers have found the genetic copying mistake that causes the severe epilepsy in children can be found in their parents who do not have epilepsy.

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Older, injured workers lose up to one-third of income, Otago research reveals

Tuesday, 1 May 2018 9:21am

Injuries impact on the financial well-being of older workers with substantial lost earnings of between 20 and 30 per cent of their work income, new University of Otago research reveals.

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Otago researchers claim inaugural Māori researcher fellowships

Monday, 30 April 2018 2:25pm

Two University of Otago researchers of Ngāpuhi descent are being rewarded with new prestigious four-year fellowships aimed at providing better health and well-being for Māori.

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New monitoring method could help Māori cancer patients

Tuesday, 24 April 2018 1:41pm

A simple blood test could provide a significant step to reducing health inequities for Māori cancer patients.

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International agreement provides Otago opportunity to help shape global cancer agenda

Friday, 20 April 2018 2:25pm

In a New Zealand first, the University of Otago has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC).

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$1 million CT scanner donated to Christchurch campus

Wednesday, 18 April 2018 10:52am

Global medical technology giant GE Healthcare has donated a state-of-the-art scanner worth $1 million to the University of Otago.

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Safety warning labels needed on fresh chicken, say researchers

Tuesday, 17 April 2018 9:07am

New research has found that many New Zealand consumers are unaware of the high levels of Campylobacter contamination of fresh chicken and most want safety labelling about the risks on poultry products.

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He Kete Kōrero – Autumn 2018

Tuesday, 17 April 2018 11:05am

The Autumn 2018 edition of the University of Otago, Wellington newsletter

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Researchers reveal history through exhumation of Otago graves

Thursday, 12 April 2018 10:03am

Exhumation and analysis of skeletons and burial sites in the historic Otago town of Lawrence is underway, with University of Otago researchers conducting The Otago Historic Cemeteries Bioarchaeology Project.

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Biochemistry PhD student already saving Māori lives

Wednesday, 11 April 2018 10:04am

A University of Otago biochemistry PhD student is credited with saving lives, thanks to his new research finding a genetic mutation that is linked to high rates of Māori stomach cancer.

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Christchurch campus recognises academic excellence and key values

Wednesday, 11 April 2018 11:37am

Christchurch campus staff who personify important values such as leadership and integrity were recognised at this year’s Academic Welcome.

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Taxing sugary drinks a no-brainer for New Zealand

Wednesday, 4 April 2018 10:24am

On 1 April 2018, the United Kingdom introduced a sugary drinks tax, an important public health measure that University of Otago, Wellington, public health researchers believe should be happening in New Zealand too.

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Yoghurt may reduce eczema and allergy in infancy

Wednesday, 28 March 2018 1:54pm

Yoghurt given to infants in the first year of life may protect them from developing eczema and allergy, researchers from the University of Otago, Wellington, and the University of Auckland have found.

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Importance of physical activity in preschoolers highlighted by Otago researcher

Wednesday, 28 March 2018 12:47pm

The journey to obesity can start as young as age one so increased physical activity should be established and encouraged early, University of Otago researchers say.

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Summer Studentship programme 2017/2018

Monday, 26 March 2018 2:10pm

University of Otago, Wellington hosts the Summer Studentship Programme each year.  The Department of Medicine has had a number of students this summer participating in 10 week research projects.

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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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More sustainable transport for better health in New Zealand cities

Friday, 23 March 2018 1:51pm

Can your local council stop you getting heart disease or cancer? Yes, say researchers in a new study led by the University of Otago, Wellington.

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Research suggests promoting smokefree homes may help reduce teen smoking

Thursday, 22 March 2018 1:52pm

New Zealand children and teens growing up in smokefree homes are less likely to take up smoking, even if their parents are smokers, a University of Otago, Wellington, study has found.

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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 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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Four inspiring teachers win 2018 Teaching Excellence Awards

Tuesday, 6 March 2018 11:09pm

The enthusiasm and passion of four Otago teachers has earned them recognition in this year’s Teaching Excellence Awards, which were presented at a ceremony at the Clocktower Building this afternoon.

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

Thursday, 1 March 2018 2:56pm

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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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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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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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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Unique chemistry - which one day might help fight serious disease - found in the New Zealand glowworm

Tuesday, 20 February 2018 9:09am

University of Otago researchers have helped uncover how New Zealand glowworms produce their glow.

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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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Christchurch researcher wins top Medicines NZ award

Friday, 16 February 2018 3:12pm

A Christchurch campus researcher has won New Zealand's top prize for using medicines to dramatically improve patients’ lives.

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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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New Associate Dean (Pacific) at the Wellington campus

Thursday, 8 February 2018 2:47pm

Dr Dianne Sika-Paotonu has been appointed to the role of Associate Dean (Pacific) at the University’s Wellington campus.

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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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Few drinking fountains in New Zealand playgrounds – New study

Friday, 2 February 2018 2:50pm

New research has found that only a fifth (20 per cent) of childrens’ playgrounds in the lower North Island of New Zealand had drinking fountains (11 out of 54 playgrounds).

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Otago study links childhood fitness to healthy lungs in adulthood

Thursday, 1 February 2018 2:49pm

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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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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University of Otago announces academic promotions

Friday, 15 December 2017 12:25pm

The University of Otago will this year promote 23 academics to the position of Professor across its Dunedin, Christchurch, and Wellington campuses.

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More than 15,000 frail elderly New Zealanders are lonely

Thursday, 14 December 2017 4:08pm

More than 15,000 frail elderly identified as being lonely according to a world-first study of 72,000 older New Zealanders. That equates to one in five older people.

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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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How do firearms, floods and flu impact public health?

Wednesday, 13 December 2017 8:24am

Firearms and public health, impacts of New Zealand’s most common natural hazard - flooding, and lessons from the 1918 flu pandemic are just some of the courses and seminar talks being offered by the University of Otago, Wellington’s Public Health Summer School.

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Newsletter, Summer 2017, University of Otago, Christchurch

Tuesday, 12 December 2017 9:32am

Christchurch newsletter. Catch up with the latest news and research findings from our Christchurch campus.

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2017 Graduates' Oath Reading Ceremony

Tuesday, 12 December 2017 1:52pm

Otago Medical School graduates undertook their oath on 9 December 2017 as part of their graduation ceremonies.

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Otago survey shows care needed at Christmas and social functions

Tuesday, 5 December 2017 10:39am

A University of Otago survey of 1000 employers and employees in New Zealand has found that many things can go wrong at work social events when alcohol is involved.

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Otago researchers gain new insights into inflammatory signalling mechanisms implicated in cancer

Monday, 4 December 2017 2:51pm

University of Otago biochemistry researchers are continuing a fine trans-Tasman history of scientific connections by making use of the Australian Synchrotron in Melbourne in their studies – a roughly football-field sized machine that can create intense beams of light a million times brighter than the sun.