News

Gaps in conservation work

Sarah-Jane O'Connor Mar 30, 2016

Some of the countries that need conservation work the most are missing out, undermining global efforts to protect biodiversity, a new study suggests. The research, published today in PLOS Biology, analysed over 10,000 scientific papers from more than 1000 journals published in 2014. The Australian researchers looked at where the research was done, by whom and how that related to … Read More

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Paracetamol ineffective for osteoarthritis pain

Sarah-Jane O'Connor Mar 18, 2016

Paracetamol has no clinical effect in treating osteoarthritis pain or improving physical function, according to a large-scale analysis of pain-relief medication. The study, published today in The Lancet, found that while paracetamol was slightly better than a placebo, it did not meet the minimum standard of clinical effectiveness for patients with knee and hip osteoarthritis. Taken on its own, … Read More

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Whales still scarce after historic hunts

Sarah-Jane O'Connor Mar 16, 2016

It took less than 150 years to decimate a population of the southern right whales around New Zealand and the species has yet to recover beyond a fraction of the pre-whaling size, genetic and historic data shows. Researchers at Oregon State University – including Scott Baker who is an adjunct professor at the University of Auckland – combined historic information on … Read More

Allergy-reducing baby formula debunked by experts

Sarah-Jane O'Connor Mar 09, 2016

Baby formula that supposedly reduces a baby’s immune response to cows’ milk doesn’t work and international guidelines should stop recommending the products, scientists say. Hydrolysed infant milk formula – marked with ‘HA’ on the tin – is recommended in many countries to lower the risk of allergic diseases in children, but a systematic review published today in The … Read More

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Voyaging to the Subantarctics

Sarah-Jane O'Connor Feb 22, 2016

Update: The HMNZS Canterbury is being deployed to the Pacific to help Fiji in the recovery from Cyclone Winston. At this stage, Operation Endurance is suspended. Feb 24, 2016. Sciblogs writer Sarah-Jane O’Connor is heading to the Subantarctics as a freelance reporter, on board the HMNZS Canterbury, bound for Campbell Island and the Antipodes Islands. This page will … Read More

What can the Pacific expect from the changing climate?

Sarah-Jane O'Connor Feb 16, 2016

Though we are already locked into sea level rise of at least 20 centimetres by 2050, the window of opportunity to act has not yet closed on us, climate scientists say. Victoria University professors James Renwick (Physical Geography) and Tim Naish (Antarctic Research Centre) presented a keynote address on Monday at the Pacific Climate Change conference, hosted by … Read More

Climate change felt in the Pacific now, not in 100 years

Sarah-Jane O'Connor Feb 15, 2016

Anote Tong wants to build a sea wall around a church. It’s the only thing remaining in a Kiribatian village: the rest has been washed away by the rising sea. “There is a village where the people are all gone, because there is no village.” The President of the Republic of Kiribati says the church needs a sea wall to … Read More

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What are the real risks of Zika?

Guest Work Feb 11, 2016

Michael Selgelid, Monash University and Euzebiusz Jamrozik, Monash University Zika has raised alarm bells worldwide, prompting the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) declaration of a “public health emergency”, El Salvador’s dramatic recommendation that women delay pregnancy for two years, and the US Centres for Disease Control’s (CDC) recommendation that pregnant women consider postponing travel to … Read More

“Science on trial” highlighted poor communication

Sarah-Jane O'Connor Feb 05, 2016

Convicting scientists for manslaughter following the L’Aquila earthquake wasn’t “science on trial” but a failing of communication, one of the seismologists says. Giulio Selvaggi spent nearly a year of his life in an Italian courtroom as he and five other scientists were tried for the manslaughter of 33 victims of the 2009 L’Aquila earthquake. Their eventual conviction had a chilling … Read More

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