Latest Science


We're going to need a lot more chemotherapy in the future

More than 15 million people each year around the world will need chemotherapy by 2040, shows a landmark Australian study. A new study predicts that between 2018 and 2040, the number of patients around the world needing chemotherapy each year will rise from 9.8 million to 15 million – a 53% increase. And that means a huge increase in chemotherapy facilities and workforce is going to be needed in the near future. The study by […] See more

Published 1 month ago. Author: UNSW Newsroom from University of New South Wales
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The changing face of biometrics research

Improved facial biometrics could be key to stopping child trafficking and child soldiers. Kenny Gregory discovers the latest research into facial recognition and facial biometrics happening at DST Group, and how they’re working to keep Australia and Australians safe. [Music plays and fades] Kenny Gregory: Hi, I’m Kenny Gregory with another podcast from Defence Science and Technology. DST’s ground-breaking research into facial biometrics could be a vital tool in the fight to stop human trafficking, missing […] See more

Published 1 month ago. Author: DST from Defence Science and Technology Group

Aurora Australis will be visible from parts of Australia this week

Forget Norway and the Aurora Borealis – the Southern Lights – Aurora Australis – will light up the skies above Tasmania and parts of Victoria this week. People keep going on about Aurora Borealis – the northern lights famous for dancing a colourful display across the sky. But this week the southern hemisphere’s own southern lights Aurora Australis will be visible from Australia. And like the northern version, they’re not to be missed. Increased solar […] See more

Published 1 month ago. Author: Ben Lewis from Australia's Science Channel
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Posture the key in the fight against Huntington's

A new assessment tool that can predict the clinical onset of Huntington’s disease is set to pave the way for more targeted treatment for sufferers. A tool developed by Edith Cowan University’s Huntington’s Disease Research Group, could possibly lead to an earlier diagnosis of clinical onset. Huntington’s disease, for which there is no cure, is a genetic disorder that causes progressive deterioration of motor control, cognitive function and mental well-being, eventually leading to death. While […] See more

Published 1 month ago. Author: ECU Newsroom from Edith Cowan University
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Australia's ethnic face is changing, and so are our blood types

A broader mix of ethnicities in Australia’s blood donor pool is needed to ensure that the patients with rare blood types are covered. It’s often said that no matter who we are, “we all bleed red”. But although our blood may be the same colour, we’re as individual on the inside as we are on the surface. Just like our background determines the way we look, where we come from is one of the major […] See more

Published 1 month ago. Author: Swinburne University of Technology Newsroom from Swinburne University of Technology
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The death of a close friend hits harder than we think

The trauma caused by the death of a close friend lasts four times longer than previously believed. People mourning a close friend may not be receiving adequate support during the grieving process, suggests new research from The Australian National University (ANU). This gap stems from a lack of recognition about the time it takes people to properly mourn a close friend. The study, published in the journal PLOS ONE, shows the death of a close […] See more

Published 1 month ago. Author: ANU Newsroom from Australian National University
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Citizen science to help save the Great Barrier Reef

An online, interactive reef map will provide scientists with up-to-date information about the current state of the reef and assist in making management decisions. Researchers from the Queensland University of Technology (QUT) have put the call out to visitors to the Great Barrier Reef to help them keep an eye on the health of the coral and its inhabitants. Part of the Virtual Reef Diver project, the public have been asked to upload their own […] See more

Published 1 month ago. Author: QUT Newsroom from Queensland University of Technology
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Paola Magni - Crimes, Critters & Clues (FameLab Australia 2019 Winner)

Paola Magni (Murdoch University) has taken out FameLab Australia 2019, winning overall as well as taking home the audience choice prize. Her funny, intriguing and fascinating talk revealed the incredible world of underwater forensics, and how shoes and barnacles can combine to crack mysteries. A crime scene investigator’s job is to reconstruct the events of crime and identify the culprit. For Magni, a forensic biologist, insects, crustaceans, molluscs, microorganisms and plants are the first witnesses. […] See more

Published 1 month ago. Author: from Australia's Science Channel
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How to tell if an asteroid is going to kill you

With 20,000 space rocks whizzing around Earth’s neighbourhood, picking the one that’s going to smack into the planet is a tricky task. Take a moment to picture the apocalypse. There’s a good chance your mind might have conjured up an image of an enormous asteroid barrelling down through the atmosphere, wreathed in fire, slamming into the earth and creating worldwide dust storms, heat, and general death. This is a fairly accurate doomsday scenario – one […] See more

Published 1 month ago. Author: Lauren Fuge from Cosmos Magazine
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2019 flu season may kill 4,000 Aussies

With 40,000 confirmed influenza cases in Australia this early in the season, experts are urging the public to get the flu vaccine. Experts at an AusSMC briefing this week warned that deaths could hit 4,000 unless infection rates slow before the winter peak. At 40,000, the number of confirmed cases is triple the typical levels seen at this time of year – in 2018 there were 58,000 recorded cases for the entire year. This flu […] See more

Published 1 month ago. Author: Joseph Milton from Australian Science Media Centre
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Drug dogs at festivals increase risk of overdoses

Deploying drug detection dogs at public places, including music festivals, encourages users to adapt their drug consumption and increases risk of overdose. Drug detection dogs are increasingly being used by policing agencies to detect people carrying illicit drugs. However, a new study has found that the presence of drug detection dogs actually increases the risk of unsafe drug practices as well as having the potential to cause lasting trauma. Lead researcher Dr Peta Malins, from […] See more

Published 1 month ago. Author: RMIT University from RMIT University
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New biodiversity report shows one million species on brink of extinction

The latest assessment of global biodiversity shares an ominous warning that life on Earth is declining at a rate unrivalled in human history. The assessment by the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) has found that around 1 million animal and plant species are now threatened with extinction. The biodiversity report is the first intergovernmental report of its kind and was compiled by 145 experts from 50 countries over three years, with […] See more

Published 1 month ago. Author: Amelia Nichele from Australia's Science Channel
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Election update: Where the major parties stand on water

In the wake of the ‘Watergate’ scandal, the Coalition, Labor, and Greens have all proposed their own water policies to solve Australia’s water woes. Three weeks into the federal election campaign and who would have thought that water policies – at least in the Murray-Darling Basin – would become such an important issue? Concerns mainly revolve around the purchases of water entitlements in the Murray-Darling Basin. The scandal, which began in 2017 when Barnaby Joyce […] See more

Published 1 month ago. Author: Quentin Grafton from Australian National University
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Watch FameLab Australia Live

Australia’s best science communicators duke it out live from FameLab Australia 2019. Live from 6:30pm AWST. Watch the livestream of FameLab Australia, as twelve of Australia’s top science communicators vie to win the national title. The Australian winner will head to the UK to represent the country in the FameLab International finals next month. With thanks to the British Council in Australia, and the WA Museum Foundation. See more

Published 1 month ago. Author: Ben Lewis from Australia's Science Channel

Australian astrophysicists detect ancient star-crash

A team of scientists have detected two stars  colliding in space, about 500 million years ago. A team of international scientists, including Australian astrophysicists, have used the world’s most sensitive detector to witness an epic collision between two stars nearly 500 million years ago. The team witnessed the discovery just weeks after the restarting of the most sensitive scientific instrument ever built – the Advanced Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory (LIGO) – which comprises twin detectors […] See more

Published 1 month ago. Author: ANU Newsroom from Australian National University
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Can we control killer robots?

Autonomous weapons are cheap and fast but there is rising concern at their ability to make decisions that value human life. Recently, soldiers in Sudan were ordered to fire at thousands of protestors outside military headquarters in central Khartoum as riot police and secret service personnel unleashed tear gas. The soldiers, instead of shooting at the crowd, fired their weapons into the air while demonstrators began to chant: “The army is protecting us” and “One […] See more

Published 1 month ago. Author: UNSW Newsroom from University of New South Wales

Eta Aquariid meteor shower set to light up night sky

Over the next couple of days remnants from Halley’s Comet will provide a spectacular meteor shower. Amateur astronomers across Australia will be treated to shooting stars over the next few days, as bits of rock and ice from Halley’s Comet burn up in Earth’s atmosphere. Astronomer Brad Tucker from The Australian National University said the streaking-light shows from the Eta Aquariid meteor shower would happen around 4am local time on each morning. “Eta Aquariids are […] See more

Published 1 month ago. Author: ANU Newsroom from Australian National University
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Dogs sniff out endangered insects

Three dogs have been trained to find endangered insects, and they could revolutionise conservation practices. Three specially-trained dogs have located the endangered Alpine Stonefly, also known as Thaumatoperla alpina, at Falls Creek in Victoria. That makes the three dogs, named Bayar, Judd and Sasha, scientifically-proven good dogs. While the Alpine Stonefly is the largest stonefly in Australia, it’s one of the smallest animals a dog has been trained to successfully detect in its natural habitat. […] See more

Published 1 month ago. Author: La Trobe Newsroom from La Trobe University
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Whooping cough is evolving to beat antibiotics

Antibiotics and vaccines may become less effective against whooping cough as a new strain takes hold in China. A new strain of Bordetella pertussis – the bacterium that causes whooping cough – has become resistant to antibiotic treatment and may also be resistant to the vaccine used in China. The emergence of the new strain has raised alarm that it could spread to Australia and should be taken seriously. A joint study between UNSW Sydney […] See more

Published 1 month ago. Author: UNSW Newsroom from University of New South Wales
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Bisexual people's mental health suffers more than gay, lesbian or heterosexual people

A new study has found that bisexual people’s mental health is poorer than gay, lesbian and heterosexual people. While studies have consistently found that bisexual people experience lower quality mental health, the reasons behind this have been largely unknown, until now. Questioning more than 2,600 bisexual people across Australia, researchers led by Julia Taylor from La Trobe University found several factors which affected the mental health of bisexual people. In particular, they uncovered that bisexual […] See more

Published 1 month ago. Author: Amelia Nichele from La Trobe University
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The rocket competition launching Australia's future

Outback Queensland shook from the noise of the first university rocket competition. ANU Rocketry were one of the teams competing. It has the feel of a country music festival. Red dirt extends to the horizon, tents and utes set up in a paddock, and the combined buzz of flies and anticipation in the air. Yet the headliners aren’t chart toppers, but rockets over three metres tall being readied for launch. Serious rocket science is going […] See more

Published 2 months ago. Author: David Gozzard from Australian National University

Humans (and other intelligent animals) might ruin the autonomous vehicle utopia

Billions of dollars is being put toward autonomous vehicle research and development. However, there is concern for the way humans and other animals will respond. Globally, road crashes kill 1.3 million people a year and injure nearly 50 million more. Autonomous vehicles (AVs) have been identified as a potential solution to this issue if they can learn to identify and avoid situations leading to crashes. Unlike human drivers, these vehicles won’t get tired, drive drunk, […] See more

Published 2 months ago. Author: Gemma Read from University of the Sunshine Coast

What happens to wildlife after bushfires?

Fire ecologists and wildlife experts have made key discoveries in how Australian wildlife restores itself after bushfires and what conservationists can do to assist the process. The area surrounding bushfires dictates what species survive and which thrive afterwards, finds a new Australian study. Influencing the re-building of post-fire ecological communities was the species in the surrounding unburnt landscape, as well as the surrounding natural vegetation. The study, which looked at Victorian areas affected by bushfires, […] See more

Published 2 months ago. Author: La Trobe Newsroom from La Trobe University
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Fraser Island dingoes and tourists will never mix

A researcher has argued the most effective way to decrease human-dingo conflict on Fraser Island may be to reduce visitor numbers. Fraser Island dingo patrols have increased following the recent attack on a toddler dragged from a campervan. However, a wildlife law expert on human-dingo conflict on the world’s largest sand island points out that humans have actually been put in greater danger by policies put in place to manage the dingoes. “The accepted science […] See more

Published 2 months ago. Author: QUT Newsroom from Queensland University of Technology
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Where Protecting Biodiversity Meets Video Games And Cryptocurrency

  A free app named QuestaGame is seizing the imaginations of users, and helping scientists describe newly discovered species.  When Andrew Robinson and his wife Mallika were driving one day, they heard their son and his friends chatting about video games in the back seat of the car. “They were talking about these fantasy worlds and all these monster types and shields they needed to protect themselves,” Robinson says. It struck him and his wife […] See more

Published 2 months ago. Author: Natalie Parletta from Australia's Science Channel