Science meets new challenges to winemakers from climate change
Riesling grapes are struggling with premature ageing because of hotter conditions in parts of Germany and Australia where they have previously thrived.
“In recent years young Riesling wines have started to show a premature ‘aged’ character,” says Dr Yevgeniya Grebneva, a German scientist working for the Australian Wine Research Institute (AWRI) in Adelaide and the Hochschule Geisenheim University.
Isolating cells in blood samples provides vital tool for disease management
Researchers at the University of Technology Sydney have invented a new way to indentify and analyse single cancer cells blood samples in a simple, cost efficient process.
Emerging technologies for such single-cell analysis are becoming important tools in different biological studies, including disease management, but are inaccessible to most laboratories due to their high cost, complexity, and reliance on skilled operators.
A new test provides a window into individual tumours
Ovarian cancer is an aggressive and deadly disease, with more than185,000 fatalities worldwide each year.
The high death toll is due to many patients developing resistance to chemotherapy, and while drugs exist that could overcome this problem, we lack the detailed, personalised information needed to choose which drug can target the tumour effectively.
Researchers at the University of New South Wales have targeted the waste product of a common medical procedure to develop a ‘liquid biopsy’ that provides unprecedented information about each individual cancer.
A closed-loop technology improves energy recovery from sludge and reduces sludge disposal costs
Treating wastewater in Australia produces three million tonnes of sludge which then must be treated and disposed of. The process is responsible for 50 per cent of the total operating costs of wastewater treatment plants.
A researcher from the University of Technology Sydney has developed a new treatment technology that would not only reduce the amount of waste by a third but also recover energy from the sludge itself.
The end product would also be safer biosolids for fertiliser than currently being produced.
Integrating electric vehicles into the grid could prevent blackouts
Electric vehicles consume a large amount of energy. As more people get electric cars and charge them at home, it puts a strain on our current electricity distribution, but researchers from the CSIRO says it doesn’t have to be that way.
They devised a computer module to model how electric vehicles could be integrated into the electricity grid to make it more reliable and efficient.
Enriching oyster reef restoration with soundscape ecology
Researchers from the University of Adelaide are using underwater music to speed up the restoration of native oyster reefs.
By using underwater speaker technology, researchers are broadcasting snapping shrimp snaps in the ocean to create ‘highways of sound’ that attract baby oysters to oyster reefs targeted for restoration.
“In the ocean, sounds orchestrated by the snaps of snapping shrimp provide navigational cues used by baby oysters to find healthy habitats to settle and grow in,” Brittany Williams, a PhD candidate at the University of Adelaide.
By-products provide cheap and plentiful ingredients for production of new treatments
Researchers from the University of Melbourne have developed a process to harvest key ingredients from whey, which could be used as precursors not only to provide cheap nutritious baby food but to develop antiviral drugs at an industrial scale.