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Newsletter - August 2007

During this month the Hub team has published content about some of the latest medical biotechnologies, including stem cell therapies, bone marrow transplants and xenotransplants. We describe how these technologies may help to improve the health and wellbeing of New Zealanders.

What's new on the Hub?

Keep visiting the site to see what's new, or register on the Hub for the My Biotech feature http://www.biotechlearn.org.nz/user/register. This provides you with a way to be alerted by email to new content as it is added.

“Stem cells” – Information sheet

How does a complex organism, like a person, develop from a single cell? Stem cell research is providing the answer to this question and many more.
URL: http://www.biotechlearn.org.nz/themes/biotech_therapies/stem_cells

“Stem cell therapy – a bird-brain idea?” – Information sheet

The idea that new nerve cells can grow in adult brains forms the basis of current research into stem cell therapy. However, not so long ago, this idea was dismissed by most scientists. It took one man’s interest in canaries to change the way brains were viewed forever.
URL: http://www.biotechlearn.org.nz/themes/biotech_therapies/
stem_cell_therapy_a_bird_brain_idea

“Bone marrow transplantation” – Information sheet

Did you know that bone marrow contains adult stem cells? In fact, bone marrow transplants are the first example of a successful stem cell therapy and have been used to treat people with life threatening blood diseases since the 1950s.
URL: http://www.biotechlearn.org.nz/themes/biotech_therapies/bone_marrow_transplantation

“Xenotransplantation” – Information sheet

About 400 New Zealanders are on the waiting list for an organ transplant at any one time. Many will die unless suitable donor organs become available. Can xenotransplantation offer an alternative solution?
URL: http://www.biotechlearn.org.nz/themes/xenotransplantation_and_organ_donation/xenotransplantation

Biotech companies

We regularly add profiles of New Zealand biotechnology companies. The most recent addition is:

“Living Cell Technologies” – Organisation profile

Living Cell Technologies (LCT) has developed technologies for transplanting healthy cells into people to replace or repair damaged organs.
URL: http://www.biotechlearn.org.nz/about/organisations/living_cell_technologies

Conference

“SciTech 2007” – 3 Oct, 2007 to 5 Oct, 2007

The biennial meeting of school science technicians will be held at St Peter’s School, Cambridge. The conference will focus on the latest science education issues and professional development, with plenty of opportunities for socialising and networking. For more information, email the conference convenor: Rkeene@stjohns-hamilton.school.nz.

Regular features

News stories

Read up-to-date New Zealand biotechnology news at: http://www.biotechlearn.org.nz/news_and_events
Here are some of our latest stories.

“DNA test detects didymo”

A new test for early detection of the invasive freshwater pest didymo has been developed by scientists at the University of Waikato.
URL: http://www.biotechlearn.org.nz/news_and_events/news_archive/dna_test_detects_didymo

“Health benefits of NZ forest fungus”

A new high value ingredient sourced from a fungus found on forest floors could soon be included in nutraceutical and pharmaceutical products.
URL: http://www.biotechlearn.org.nz/news_and_events/news_archive/
health_benefits_of_nz_forest_fungus

Events

Check out up-coming events for scientists and educators http://www.biotechlearn.org.nz/news_and_events/events

We welcome your ideas

We are keen to receive your ideas and feedback about the Biotechnology Hub. Please email us at enquiries@biotechlearn.org.nz or use our Contact form if you have any comments or suggestions for the Hub.

Contact us

Please contact us if you have any queries about the Hub. Email: enquiries@biotechlearn.org.nz

Best wishes.
Dr Diane Dinnis, Project Manager, New Zealand Biotechnology Learning Hub
URL: www.biotechlearn.org.nz

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