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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

Latest updates on Zika – Expert reaction

Posted in Science Alert: Experts Respond on February 5th, 2016.

As more Zika virus cases are reported in South America and the Pacific, media attention has turned to GM mosquitoes and the first  infection – a pregnant woman – reported in Europe. In Spain, health authorities have confirmed a pregnant woman recently returned from Columbia is infected with the virus. It is the first reported […]

Continue reading “Latest updates on Zika – Expert reaction

Potential sexual transmission of Zika – Expert Reaction

A healthcare department in Dallas, Texas, USA, has reported a case of Zika virus infection acquired through sexual intercourse rather than mosquito bite. Officials at Dallas County Health and Human Services (DCHHS) have received confirmation from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) of the first Zika virus case acquired through sexual transmission in […]

February 3rd, 2016 Read full Story

NZ bowel cancer rates dropping – Expert reaction

Increasing economic development is linked with growing rates of bowel cancer, but some high-income countries – including New Zealand – seem to be exceptions, according to a global cancer study. Drawing on data from 184 countries, researchers from the International Agency for Research on Cancer found that rates of bowel cancer increased with levels of […]

February 2nd, 2016 Read full Story

Human embryo gene editing gets UK go-ahead – Expert reaction

A regulatory body in the UK  has approved the first research application to use new ‘gene editing’ techniques on human embryos. The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority is the UK’s independent regulator overseeing the use of gametes and embryos in fertility treatment and research. The Authority has today approved a proposal for new research, led by […]

February 2nd, 2016 Read full Story

Updated: Zika virus outbreak – Expert reaction

Concern over the current outbreak of the mosquito-spread Zika virus in the Americas is growing. The virus is likely to spread to all countries in the Americas except for Canada and Chile, the World Health Organization said yesterday. The US Centres for Disease Control currently lists 22 countries with active transmission of the virus, including […]

January 27th, 2016 Read full Story

Hottest year on record – Expert reaction

Earth’s 2015 surface temperatures were the warmest on record, according to independent analyses by NASA, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and the UK Met Office. Read more about the announcement, and related news coverage, here. The Science Media Centre contacted New Zealand experts for comment on the announcement. Prof Martin Manning, NZ Climate […]

January 21st, 2016 Read full Story

‘Scientific’ whaling needs better scrutiny – Expert reaction

Scientists are frustrated with the International Whaling Commission over the lack of science in Japan’s scientific whaling programme, and are calling for a new review system.  Japanese whalers are back in the Southern Ocean, aiming to kill 333 minke whales this year — purportedly for scientific purposes. In a correspondence article in this week’s Nature, […]

January 21st, 2016 Read full Story

Question marks over ultrasound and health – Experts respond

Ultra-high frequency noise is imperceptible to the human ear but could be harming us, according to one researcher concerned with a lack of research into the phenomenon. Writing in Proceedings of the Royal Society A, Prof Tim Leighton from the University of Southampton highlighted the high levels of ultrasound – sound waves with frequencies higher than […]

January 20th, 2016 Read full Story

Glyphosate weedkiller: what’s the risk? – Expert reaction

The use of glyphosate weedkiller on Auckland parks and footpaths is in the spotlight amidst claims local councils’ spraying programmes are putting the public at risk. This week, the Green Party issued a media release calling for the Environmental Protection Authority to review the use of glyphosate. “Our survey of councils shows thousands of litres of […]

January 20th, 2016 Read full Story

Man dies after taking clinical trial drug- Expert reaction

A man died today after several days in a brain-dead state, after having an adverse reaction to a drug taken as part of clinical trial to establish the safety of the compound. The drug in question was a FAAH (Fatty Acid Amide Hydrolase) inhibitor, manufactured by the Portuguese company Bial as a potential pain treatment. […]

January 18th, 2016 Read full Story


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