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Science Alert: Experts Respond:

A round-up of comment from experts on breaking stories and ongoing issues in science and technology.

Science Alert: Experts Respond

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Science Alert: Experts Respond

GP Survey explores end of life decisions – Expert reaction

Posted in Science Alert: Experts Respond on July 24th, 2015.

A new survey of New Zealand GPs shows that many make decisions about end of life care that may indirectly or directly hasten death. Caring for a patient at the end of their life is an unenviable challenge faced by many general practitioners. A new survey by researchers at the University of Auckland has canvassed […]

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Kiwi genome sniffs out bird’s evolution – Expert reaction

Kiwi evolved specially adapted smell detectors to help them cope with nocturnal life, according to a new study that has mapped out the genome—the entire genetic code—of the North Island brown kiwi. The genetic blueprint for our national bird, mapped by a team of European scientists, has been published in the open access journal Genome […]

July 23rd, 2015 Read full Story

Alzheimer’s drug announcement – expert reaction

Scientists are cautiously optimistic about new data indicating the drug solanezumab can slow the progression of Alzheimer’s disease – if provided early. The drug’s developer, pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly, this week announced preliminary findings from clinical trials investigating the drug solanezumab. Combining data from several trials, the researchers were able to show that patients who […]

July 23rd, 2015 Read full Story

Should doctors recommend homeopathy? – Expert reaction

In a head-to-head debate article in this week’s BMJ, UK academics argue the case for and against doctors recommending homeopathic products to their patients. Dr Peter Fisher, Director of Research at the Royal London Hospital for Integrated Medicine, says the research to date shows some evidence of benefit and claims recent reviews — such as […]

July 15th, 2015 Read full Story

UPDATED: Claims of a ‘mini ice-age’ ahead – Expert reaction

An unpublished study examining solar cycles has created a flare-up of headlines claiming we are headed for a ‘mini-ice age’, but does the research stack up? The study presented at the UK National Astronomy Meeting this month outlined a new model of solar activity which was based on two separate internal cycles in the sun […]

July 14th, 2015 Read full Story

Warming puts the squeeze on bumble bees – Expert reaction

A new comprehensive study, published in Science, tracks the impact of climate change on bumblebees, finding global warming is rapidly shrinking the area where these bees are found in both North America and Europe. Researchers examined more than 420,000 historical and current Northern Hemisphere records of many species of bumblebees–and confirm that the critical pollinators […]

July 10th, 2015 Read full Story

Drinking in pregnancy ‘common’ – Expert reaction

Drinking alcohol while pregnant is common, reveals a study of first time mothers in UK, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand. However much of this could be due mums-to-be being unaware early in their pregnancy, says a Kiwi researcher. The new research, published in BMJ Open, combined data from several recent studies to examine the use […]

July 8th, 2015 Read full Story

UPDATED: NZ climate target announced – Expert reaction

The Government has today announced a new New Zealand climate target in anticipation of an international climate agreement. According to the announcement on the Ministry for the Environment website: In July 2015, the New Zealand Government announced that our post-2020 climate change target is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to 30 per cent below 2005 […]

July 7th, 2015 Read full Story

How old are you really? Expert reaction

There is more to human ageing than just the passing of time. A new study, published in PNAS, uses a number of different measures to determine individuals’ ‘biological age’, drawing on the long-running Dunedin Longitudinal Study. Although all the participants were, chronologically speaking, 38 years old at the time of the study, their biological ages […]

July 7th, 2015 Read full Story

Rat food contamination study questioned – Expert Reaction

A new study reports that the near-ubiquitous contamination of  ‘chow’ used to feed rats in experiments maybe causing spurious results in toxicology studies. However independent experts say the results may in fact show the opposite –  that there is no cause for concern. The study, published today in PLOS ONE, examined GMO content and the […]

July 3rd, 2015 Read full Story


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