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Slightly belated, but here are the results of the Palmerston North workshops on the Emerging Researchers roadshow, where scientists had five minutes to sum up their research in one or two sentences only.

My top 10 favourites from Palmy…

Imagine if we could have the FIFA World Cup stadium surface area condensed into a one gram material. What could be done with this kind of material?

It’s like the Hitch-hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy – finding clues tohow microbes are stuck to each other in the rumen of the cow.

How to make chickens lay one egg per day or 365 eggs in 365 days. I want to increase the amount of protein for human consumption.

I pretty much know how much water I drink, cook with, use to take a shower and flush the toilet. But water footprinting can also tell me how much water it takes to make my cup of coffee, my shirt and my shoes.

A glass of milk or a pieceof cheese. Have you wondered how the proteins interact differently in order to change from one state to another?

Like layers of paint on an old fence our floodplain sediments preserve a record of river behaviour over time. By peeling back the  layers we may better understand how river systems have responded to environmental changes and how they may respond in the future.

Our Earth’s future could be resting in the mouths of cows. Reducing methane emissions could save our precious planet from overheating.

Searching for a falcon in a pine forest is like searching for a needle in a haystack. Using the broadcast of a falcon’s call is like using a magnet to attract the needle.

Will a child affected with Duchenne and Beckens muscular dystrophin be able to walk, run and do all the sorts of things a normal child would? Yes, if scientists crack the code and solve the structure of missing proteins.

And a sample of the rest

* Malnutrition among infants in developing countries continues to rage like a hurricane. A replacement in cereal given to them with sweet potato holds the key to this storm.

* Find where the bacterium come from and where theywill go. Oh, the bacterium is campylobacter and it causes diseases in the human gut.

* Good  manners for cows!

* Can we save people from misleading truths of science by clearly emphasizing the ‘truth’ behind the crucial research connected to the welfare of humankind?

* Thousands of hectares of trees are cut down each year that are home to New Zealand’s only land mammals – bats. What happens to these bats and can we protect them?

* Environmental pollution is pushing us to a point of no return. Resources need re-investment, otherwise volcanic ash and oil spills will take our breath. This bank is closed for cash-out.

* Surprisingly you will find solar energy will improve your diet with  more nutrition and less microbes.

* Greenhouse gases cause global warming and climate change. We mitigate them by putting  less fertilizer on your farm.

* Icebergs are created the same way as breaking off a piece of chocolate. The only question is what happens when we run out of chocolate?

* Plants differ in the way they recycle their nitrogen. This research is about finding those plants that are really good at it so that we can use less fertiliser and have a cleaner environment.

* How do we feed the world tomorrow? Design plants for sustainable agriculture.

* Pine infecting fungus slows growth of New Zealand’s  pine plantations. We are testing other fungi for their ability to wage war against the pine pathogen and encourage growth ofour forest pine.

* Are you drowning in a huge amount of data but staring at information? If so,  you really need data mining to help  you out.

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