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Division of Sciences news

Otago study finds mindfulness apps can improve mental health

Wednesday, 14 November 2018 7:58am

A University of Otago study has found that using mindfulness meditation applications (apps) on phones is associated with improvements in people’s mental health.

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Science Communication’s Sir Peter Blake Ambassador

Wednesday, 14 November 2018 8:48am

Currently on the high seas east of New Zealand for research, Master of Science Communication student Lana Young is one of eight Otago students selected as a 2018 Sir Peter Blake Trust Ambassador.

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Division of Science Marsden Fund success

Tuesday, 13 November 2018 9:42am

University of Otago researchers are celebrating the most successful Marsden Fund round to date, securing $28.5 million for 41 world-class research projects. Of this, $11 million across 14 projects has been granted to researchers in the Science Division, the highest number ever.

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Bringing Antarctica to the South Pacific

Thursday, 8 November 2018 8:07pm

Antarctica and the South Pacific islands seem worlds apart but a recent exhibition taken to Niue and Rarotonga taught local schools this connection is closer than expected.

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One university’s old microscopes are another university’s treasure

Wednesday, 7 November 2018 4:42pm

The University of Otago has shipped 21 microscopes to Myanmar’s University of Yangon to help address a shortage of scientific equipment.

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Otago Global Health Institute launch: 28 November 2018

Tuesday, 6 November 2018 12:46pm

You are invited to join us for the official launch of the Otago Global Health Institute:
Wednesday 28 November at 6.30pm (directly after the 2018 McKinlay Oration), at Te Wao Nui, Otago Business School

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Otago researcher to explore new Antarctic frontiers

Monday, 5 November 2018 3:41pm

Otago Geophysicist Professor Gary Wilson will join a team of New Zealand scientists in exploring new frontiers in Antarctica this season when they travel across the Ross Ice Shelf to collect information that helps identify the conditions that lead to the retreat of glaciers and sea level rise.

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Computer scientist wins Fellowship to further develop augmented reality technology

Tuesday, 30 October 2018 10:46am

University of Otago computer scientist Stefanie Zollman has won the L’Orėal-UNESCO For Women in Science Fellowship, which recognises outstanding female scientists globally.

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TVNZ embraces the enthusiasm of Physics’ HOD

Monday, 29 October 2018 2:27pm

TVNZ has fallen for the enthusiasm of Otago Physics Professor Craig Rodger asking him to front an item on Seven Sharp touring New Zealand’s new rocket factory.

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Call for attention to "Māori positive ageing" as numbers set to climb

Monday, 29 October 2018 2:16pm

There is a call for attention to focus on "Māori positive ageing" as the number of older Māori is set to double over a short period with higher rates of disability and dependence than the general population.

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Two University of Otago filmmakers win big award

Monday, 29 October 2018 12:49pm

The Guardian of Kinabalu, a film co-produced by Dr Wiebke Finkler of the University of Otago’s Department of Tourism and Professor Lloyd Spencer Davis of the Centre for Science Communication, has been awarded the Special Jury Prize at the 11th International Kuala Lumpur Eco Film Festival. The award was announced at a formal ceremony in the Malaysian capital on 26 October, with the documentary having its world premiere the next night.

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Curtain falls on PE’s final dance performance 

Wednesday, 24 October 2018 3:35pm

The School of Physical Education, Sport and Exercise Sciences held the final performance for its last dance and gymnastics paper at the beginning of this month. The Division of Sciences’ Communications Adviser Guy Frederick was caught the action for the Otago Bulletin Board.

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Tuesday Morning Seminar: Centers for Disease Control, Atlanta GA

Tuesday, 23 October 2018 10:23am

Seminar: In the Blood: Salmonella Bacteremia in Hospitalized Children with Acute Febrile Illness—Uganda, 2016–2017
Date: October 23, 2018    Time: 9:00 – 10:30 am (ET)    Venue: Global Communications Center, Langmuir Auditorium A, Centers for Disease Control (Atlanta GA)

OGHI Co-Director Professor John Crump MB ChB, MD, DTM&H will be a discussant on the panel.

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Speeding up research

Tuesday, 23 October 2018 3:33pm

Otago researchers now have some of the fastest links with the world that New Zealand has ever seen, following the launch of the new Hawaiki Cable capability by Research and Education Advanced Network New Zealand (REANNZ) at the University on Friday.

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New Otago research of quiet but potentially hazardous seismic faults

Wednesday, 17 October 2018 2:25pm

Otago is a region of ‘quiet’ but important faults and will be the first researched in a project led by Professor Mark Stirling of the Department of Geology.

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Free public talk: Hidden Dangers

Wednesday, 17 October 2018 11:57am

Food safety takes constant vigilance. The changing landscape of food production and changes in the microbes themselves offer regular challenges. Finding unsuspected disease outbreaks and fixing problems that led to them is an important part of public health. Now, advanced DNA sequencing is helping public health officials find and solve more outbreaks, and target control measures to stop them from happening again. Working with partners from farm to fork, we can make food safer for everyone.

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US Ambassador keen to foster connections with Otago

Tuesday, 16 October 2018 7:45pm

The United States Ambassador to New Zealand, Mr Scott Brown, visited the University last week to learn about Otago’s internationally significant research and foster future collaborative ties.

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Otago-led research resolves longstanding biodiversity evolution question

Tuesday, 16 October 2018 2:37pm

Have you ever wondered why so many species live in tropical rainforests? Or why some groups of organisms have thousands of species, and other groups only a few?

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Otago researchers want us to go nuts about nuts

Monday, 15 October 2018 11:14am

They improve health, reduce the risk of heart disease, and can potentially make us leaner, but too many New Zealanders are shying away from nuts. University of Otago researchers are keen to crack this conundrum.

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Fishy role ends with retirement

Thursday, 11 October 2018 7:43pm

The Manager of the University of Otago’s New Zealand Marine Studies Centre (NZMSC) Tessa Mills will tomorrow hang up her “trusty blue polar fleece” for the last time when she retires after 13 years at the helm.

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Swedish Ambassador visits Otago’s Department of Botany

Wednesday, 10 October 2018 9:19pm

Forging new connections based around botanical ties was central to a recent visit to Otago by Sweden’s Ambassador to New Zealand.

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Using new tools to explore old landscapes

Tuesday, 9 October 2018 10:58am

As Te Koronga – the University’s indigenous science research theme – turns five, the Otago Bulletin Board takes a look at the novel work of one of its PhD candidates, Chelsea Cunningham.

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University supports predator free Dunedin

Friday, 5 October 2018 11:03am

University of Otago Zoologists are excited by this week’s launch of Predator Free Dunedin, a project bringing 20 agencies, environmental trusts, research institutions and mana whenua groups together to remove predators from over 31,000 hectares around Dunedin.

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Department of Microbiology Seminar

Thursday, 4 October 2018 11:57am

Studying emerging diseases through genomics and stem cells: antibiotic resistant typhoid as an exemplar

Professor Gordon Dougan
University of Cambridge, United Kingdom

12:00 Noon, Monday, 15th October
Room 208, 2nd floor
Microbiology Building
720 Cumberland St

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Otago postgraduate takes just four minutes to win gold

Wednesday, 3 October 2018 11:49am

If Katherine Lockton needed to justify taking time off from her research to compete in the Taekwan-do World Cup, then coming home with a gold medal was the perfect way.

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Rare video captured of ‘white’ southern right whales as researchers examine the resurgent species

Tuesday, 2 October 2018 9:03am

A University of Otago research team led by Professor Steve Dawson and Dr Will Rayment, have recently returned from a month-long expedition to the sub-Antarctic Auckland Islands where they have been collecting data on a recovering population of southern right whales.

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Māori, Pacific tauira get science scholarship boost

Monday, 1 October 2018 7:57pm

A new scholarship for aspiring Māori and Pacific scientists is being labelled a game changer in the bid to retain students with an interest in science.

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Polar Symposium highlights University as leader

Friday, 28 September 2018 1:45pm

The University’s recent Polar Symposium showcased the breadth of Otago’s polar research community which organisers say is the most diverse in any New Zealand university.

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Young New Zealand film-maker bringing international attention to plight of bees

Friday, 21 September 2018 3:44pm

A new approach in the fight against American foulbrood – a disease effecting beehives across the world – is the topic of a New Zealand-made film shortlisted in the International Jackson Hole Science Media Awards being held in Boston, USA, this week (26-28 September NZT).

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New book investigates why some humans want to kill themselves

Friday, 21 September 2018 3:36pm

University of Otago research psychologist Jesse Bering has explored the dark experiences of being suicidal, in his new book: A very human ending, how suicide haunts our species.

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Participants Needed for Research Study

Thursday, 20 September 2018 11:21am

Researchers in the Department of Medicine in Dunedin are conducting a trial on whole grains and health for people with type 2 diabetes.

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Sustained levels of moderate warming could melt the East Antarctic Ice Sheet

Thursday, 20 September 2018 11:48am

The East Antarctic Ice Sheet melted during extended warm periods in the past when temperatures were similar to those predicted for the coming century, a new study published in Nature has shown.

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Nutrition textbook receives major award

Wednesday, 19 September 2018 11:15am

A textbook co-authored by Otago Professor of Human Nutrition Jim Mann, has been named one of the best in the world by the British Medical Association (BMA).

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Otago academic scoops top teaching award

Friday, 14 September 2018 1:32pm

The Otago academic who was last night crowned the top tertiary teacher in New Zealand says she is extremely humbled to receive the award.

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GREEN Grid project releases unique household electricity demand dataset for public use

Thursday, 13 September 2018 11:52am

“How much electricity do heat pumps really use? When is hot water heated and are the lights kept on all day in winter?” These and other questions can now be answered thanks to the release of anonymised electricity power demand data from a sample of 45 New Zealand households.

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Project builds resilience in communities preparing for Alpine Fault quake

Tuesday, 11 September 2018 3:12pm

The scientists, emergency planners and numerous agencies involved in preparing for a future Alpine Fault earthquake have modelled the impacts of a major earthquake on the Alpine Fault and highlighted the need for emergency agencies to work across boundaries during a future disaster, University of Otago research reveals.

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Otago researchers bring a world-first in ancient earthquake identification

Tuesday, 4 September 2018 12:04pm

The first natural example of a fossilised earthquake in serpentinite (type of rock) is providing new knowledge about the extreme forces and chemical reactions that occur during seismic ruptures.

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Otago-led research set to make smartphones even smarter

Friday, 31 August 2018 11:15am

The accuracy of the global positioning system (GPS) in smartphones has been significantly improved thanks to research conducted at the University of Otago, New Zealand, in collaboration with Curtin University, Australia.

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Travelling thousands of kilometres to feed – penguins’ “crazy” journeys studied by Otago scientists

Thursday, 30 August 2018 8:22am

Imagine making a 7,000km journey just for dinner. That, University of Otago scientists have found, is the life of the elusive Fiordland penguin.

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Missing ‘Saildrone’ recovered by University of Otago team

Tuesday, 28 August 2018 10:09am

While in the Auckland Islands studying the recovering population of southern right whales, a University of Otago team led by Professor Steve Dawson and Dr Will Rayment was given an unusual task by the Department of Conservation (DOC) – to recover a drone that had become stranded on Sandy Bay, on Enderby Island.