Science Media Centre

Science Media Centre


Expert Q&A: Aquifers, groundwater and how contaminations can occur

Sarah-Jane O'Connor posted in on August 24th, 2016.

A campylobacter outbreak in Havelock North affected an estimated 4000 people, sent dozens to the emergency department and sparked an inquiry into what happened and how well the response was managed. We’ve worked with experts to answer some simple and frequently-asked questions about the water in our aquifers, how it’s linked to surface water, and […]

Hawke’s Bay laid low with gastro – In the News

Sarah-Jane O'Connor posted in on August 18th, 2016.

Thousands of people in Havelock North have been laid low with gastroenteritis in the past week following a contamination of the drinking water supply, thought to be campylobacter. University of Otago professor of public health Michael Baker has been talking to media since Monday about the science behind the outbreak, including a live chat with […]

UPDATED: Hawke’s Bay campylobacter outbreak – Expert Reaction

Sarah-Jane O'Connor posted in on August 15th, 2016.

An outbreak of gastroenteritis – likely caused by Campylobacter – has sent at least 20 people to hospital in Hawke’s Bay. Hawke’s Bay District Health Board Medical Officer of Health Dr Nick Jones has said the majority of people presenting with the illness were affected by Campylobacter, a water-borne bacteria. Dr Jones has told media that animal faeces […]

Glowing bacteria ‘illegally’ produced in New Zealand – The Dominion Post

Laura Goodall posted in on April 8th, 2015.

Glowing green bacteria has been produced illegally in New Zealand using mail-order kits from America, Tom Hunt reports in The Dominion Post. The kits, ordered by educational institutes, contain harmless E. coli bacteria and plasmids with a gene for glowing under UV light. While these separately don’t pose a legal problem, educators that combine them to produce glowing bacteria are […]

UPDATED: Raw milk debate reignited – experts respond

John Kerr posted in on December 12th, 2014.

Consumption of raw milk has been implicated in the death of an Australian three-year-old, drawing the raw milk debate back into the public eye. The unpasteurised milk was sold as ‘bath milk’ to circumvent laws around the sale of raw milk for consumption. Read more in coverage from the New Zealand Herald or listen to […]

Fonterra cream products contaminated with E.coli

Peter Griffin posted in on January 14th, 2014.

Milk producer Fonterra has  recalled 8,700 bottles of its Anchor fresh cream after testing revealed a batch of the cream was contaminated with E. coli bacteria, some strains of which can cause nausea, diarrhea. Fonterra is yet to confirm which strain of E.coli that was confirmed in an independent lab, after regular testing of fresh […]

FURTHER UPDATE: European E. coli outbreak — experts respond

John Kerr posted in on June 3rd, 2011.

The outbreak of Escheria coli infection in Germany appears to be worse than anticipated, with health experts suspecting that current strain of the bacterium is more virulent than usual. Below are comments on the unfolding situation in Germany from experts across the global SMC network. Please feel free to use these in your stories.  Previous […]

Experts respond: E coli outbreak in Europe

John Kerr posted in on June 2nd, 2011.

The outbreak of Escherichia coli in Europe is causing widespread concern as experts work to pinpoint the source of the bacteria. Our colleagues at the UK SMC have collected the comments below from British experts. Feel free to use these quotes in your stories. To talk to a local expert please contact the Science Media […]

The Timaru Herald: Bacteria – we’re covered in it

Peter Griffin posted in on July 26th, 2010.

Charley Mann writes in the Timaru Herald about the bacteria which cover all of our surfaces and which, according to a US expert, we should be trying harder to control. According to his research, environmental microbiologist Charles Gerba says that the average Kiwi office deskis covered by 200 times more bacteria than a toilet seat.  […]

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