This Week

This week at Science in Public

Should Australia allow mitochondrial donation?

  • Experts available for interview from 6.30 am Thursday, video available
  • Public events in Sydney, Melbourne and online, media call in Brisbane on Saturday
  • Case studies/patients also available from the Mito Foundation.
  • Media contact Niall Byrne, 0417 131 977, niall@scienceinpublic.com.au  

Unchanging hearts vs changing breasts: $50K prizes for the stem cell scientists unlocking their secrets.

Book your spot at the Fresh Science pub night. Hear the latest science over dinner and a drink: Adelaide (13 November).

Underwater grandmothers reveal big population of lethal sea snakes: A novel citizen science project in New Caledonia finds an ‘astonishing’ number of venomous reptiles in a popular swimming spot.
Media training places available in: Melbourne (19 November), Canberra (28 November), and Sydney (4 December)

Mission design at rocket speed

Planning space missions is traditionally a time-consuming and costly process. But the new Australian National Concurrent Design Facility (ANCDF), housed at UNSW’s Canberra campus, speeds things up so a mission can be planned in weeks rather than months.

Harnessing the expertise, design processes and software of the French Space Agency CNES (Centre National d’Etudes Spatiales), the UNSW team has created Australia’s first concurrent design facility.

The ANCDF allows engineers and scientists—both professionals and students—to design different parts of a mission in parallel rather than one after the other, which is the traditional approach. [continue reading…]

Wheat that’s good for guts

A new kind of wheat high in resistant starch can improve intestinal health

Bowel cancer is the world’s third most common cancer. A diet that includes more resistant starch, a kind of fibre that feeds good bacteria in the large intestine, can make it less common. Resistant starch helps improve gut health and reduces the risk of conditions such as diabetes, obesity, heart disease and cancer.

Since 2006, CSIRO scientists have been working in a joint venture with French company Limagrain Céréales Ingrédients and the Grains Research and Development Corporation to develop wheat with more resistant starch. [continue reading…]

Science in Public this week (21- 25 Nov 2011)

Monday: Niall’s in Canberra for the $50,000 CSL Florey Medal announcement.  Release and images here.

Tuesday: Niall’s at the Excellence in Health Journalism awards at the National Press Club. Update: Niall accepted the Health Journalist of the Year 2011 award on behalf of Melbourne film-maker Sonya Pemberton.  More here.

Wednesday: Blamey & Saunders Hearing’s new name and office are being launched by Michelle Gallaher, CEO of the BioMelbourne Network

Thursday: For 30 years the Menzies Foundation has been awarding scholarships to researchers in health sciences and the humanities.
Tim’s off to the 2011 Menzies Memorial Scholars announcement tonight – more information here.

Science in Public this week (10-16 Oct 2011)

PM’s Prizes: Niall, Sarah, Tim and AJ are at the PM’s Prizes for Science in Canberra. Details here.

Dark Energy: Tamara Davis is talking about dark energy in Victoria.  details here.

On the horizon: For next week we’re thinking about the Centenary Prize for Creativity, and about an intriguing paper coming up about the immune cells in our skin – why don’t they go to war against our skin bacteria?