Freelance portfolio

  • Microbial gangs are organised killers (Cosmos magazine) (5/4/2015) - Who can forget Superman? Christopher Reeve with his dazzling white teeth, blue eyes and biceps of steel embodied the superhero – in films and in life. When he fell from his horse in 1995 while training for an equestrian event, Reeve was left quadriplegic but undefeated. He continued his film career and his activism, campaigning … More Microbial gangs are organised killers (Cosmos magazine)
  • Fatty liver disease: The liver labyrinth (Nature) (12/4/2014) - The slimy-smooth, dark-red exterior of a healthy liver yields few clues about its complex nature. This 1.5-kilogram lump of tissue is so good at recovering from injury that it requires as little as one-quarter of its original bulk to fully regenerate. But the organ has its limits. Constant cell damage, such as that caused by … More Fatty liver disease: The liver labyrinth (Nature)
  • Nature Outlook: Assessing science (7/24/2014) - Research impact: Income for outcome When it comes to research, governments the world over are asking more questions about whether they are getting value for money — and there is nothing wrong with that, says Peter Gluckman, chief science adviser to the prime minister of New Zealand. “It is what the whole of a nation’s … More Nature Outlook: Assessing science
  • Gloomy pharma forecast (5/4/2011) - Gloomy pharma forecast in Japan downgraded after quake Japan is the world’s second largest pharmaceutical market after the US on the basis of total revenue. But according to Business Monitor International (BMI), a London-based analyst firm, Japan’s overall pharmaceutical market is stagnating, and the devastating 9.0-magnitude earthquake that struck in March has introduced new uncertainties. … More Gloomy pharma forecast
  • Experts emphasize need for speed in launch of Australian trials (5/4/2011) - Experts emphasize need for speed in launch of Australian trials SYDNEY — This past December, Oprah Winfrey took 300 of her audience members on a much-publicized trip to Australia to celebrate the twenty-fifth anniversary of her US talk show. But it’s going to take more than an Oprah endorsement or a catchy advertising campaign for … More Experts emphasize need for speed in launch of Australian trials
  • The search for child cancer drugs grows up (3/6/2011) - The search for child cancer drugs grows up “Off the top of my head, I really can’t think of a single cancer drug that was developed specifically for pediatric use,” says Peter Houghton, director of the Center for Childhood Cancer at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio. “All have had their origin in adult clinical … More The search for child cancer drugs grows up
  • Animal pharma (1/31/2011) - Animal pharma Cosmos magazine: Transgenic animals are poised to become pharmaceutical factories, churning out everything from natural insulin to cancer treatments. Branwen Morgan reports. It’s an idyllic setting: the silence of the countryside, green meadows rolling into the distance and cows foraging lazily on the grass. What’s out of place is a double row of … More Animal pharma
  • Conference brings Asia-Pacific research funding scheme closer (1/10/2011) - Conference brings Asia-Pacific research funding scheme closer Nature Medicine: For several years, the idea of a multinational funding scheme to support research in the Asia-Pacific region has been brewing. Finally, at the biannual Australian Health and Medical Research Congress late last year, policymakers publicly discussed the merits and challenges of such a venture for the … More Conference brings Asia-Pacific research funding scheme closer
  • Dolphins’ social network (11/1/2010) - Dolphins’ social network ABC News in Science: Female dolphins that “hang-out” with other mums are themselves more successful as mothers according to an international team of behavioural scientists. http://www.abc.net.au/science/articles/2010/11/02/3053831.htm The Science Show 6 November 2010 Excerpt: If you’re in your 30s or 40s, you’ll probably remember Flipper, a bottlenose dolphin, the star of a TV … More Dolphins’ social network
  • Waikato Times – profile series (9/6/2010) -  Go getting kiwi scientist makes good in the UK 6/9/2010 Branwen Morgan talks to Phil L’Huillier Couple compete for extra muscle 6/9/2010 Branwen Morgan talks to Ravi Kambadur and Mridula Sharma It’s all in the genes 23/08/10 Branwen Morgan talks to Marcel Dinger Putting the air in people’s lungs 08/16/10  Branwen Morgan talks to David … More Waikato Times – profile series
  • Biofilms: new methods of attack (8/28/2010) - Biofilms: new methods of attack  The Science Show on Radio National: “Biofilms, and no, they’re not a new genre of science movies. We’re talking about the layers of slime that build up on a variety of surfaces. In your body they are found on your teeth, in your blood, in your lungs, in fact nearly … More Biofilms: new methods of attack
  • Mitochondrial mysteries (7/31/2010) - Mitochondrial mysteries Australian Life Scientist: They are diseases most people haven’t heard of: Kearns-Sayre syndrome, Leber’s hereditary optic neuropathy, Leigh syndrome or MELAS. Neither had Associate Professor David Thorburn until he “inherited” the mitochondrial disease research group at the Murdoch Childrens Research Institute (MCRI) in Melbourne on his return to Australia from the USA in … More Mitochondrial mysteries
  • Next Next Generation Sequencing (7/31/2010) - Next Next Generation Sequencing  Australian Life Scientist: It took nearly two decades to go from the release of the first semi-automated genome sequencer in the mid-1980s to the launch of Roche’s flagship 454 FLX next generation sequencer in 2005. The 454 is now one of three major players in the next gen market whose impact … More Next Next Generation Sequencing
  • Australia reworks research philanthropy to fill unmet need (7/1/2010) - Australia reworks research philanthropy to fill unmet need Nature Medicine: Australians are known to be good at cheering on their sports teams and incredibly generous in times of crisis, as reflected by the level of public giving after the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami. Yet philanthropic funding for health and medical research is relatively low by … More Australia reworks research philanthropy to fill unmet need
  • Spoonful of sugar makes the medicine go down (5/14/2010) - Spoonful of sugar makes the medicine go down ABC News in Science: Mary Poppins was right: A spoonful of sugar really does help the medicine go down, according to the results of a new study. Dr Denise Harrison, of the Royal Children’s Hospital in Melbourne, and colleagues found that giving less than half a teaspoon … More Spoonful of sugar makes the medicine go down
  • NZ’s GM cattle under fire (3/27/2010) - NZ’s GM cattle under fire Nature News: Scientists in New Zealand whose work with genetically modified (GM) animals had been threatened by a High Court ruling have been given a reprieve. But they say that the case highlights the legislative challenges their research faces. The case involves a series of applications made by the state-owned … More NZ’s GM cattle under fire
  • Concerns over varroa mite resistance (3/24/2010) - Concerns over varroa mite resistance ABC News in Science: The spread of a pesticide-resistant mite, which can decimate honeybee hives, is causing concern among beekeepers in New Zealand. Dr Mark Goodwin of the New Zealand Institute for Plant & Food Research says while Varroa destructor has been in New Zealand for ten years, they’ve only … More Concerns over varroa mite resistance
  • Tailored diet may slow down DNA damage (3/9/2010) - Tailored diet may slow down DNA damage ABC News in Science: Mounting evidence on the effect of micronutrients on DNA damage calls for a re-evaluation of recommended dietary intake values, say researchers. Professor Michael Fenech of CSIRO‘s Food and Nutritional Sciences Division in Adelaide lays out his argument in a paper accepted for publication in … More Tailored diet may slow down DNA damage
  • Altruism surfaces on slow-sinking ship (3/1/2010) - Altruism surfaces on slow-sinking ship ABC News in Science: The primal instinct to selfishly flee from a dangerous situation takes precedence over helping others – unless you have time on your hands, according to Australian researchers. Professor Benno Torgler, of the Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane, and colleagues, report their work in this week’s … More Altruism surfaces on slow-sinking ship
  • Enzyme blocker may reverse nerve damage (10/26/2009) - Enzyme blocker may reverse nerve damage ABC News in Science: Blocking the action of a single enzyme prevents injured nerve cells dying and enables them to regrow, say scientists in the US. Their findings, to be published this week in the early edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, could have implications … More Enzyme blocker may reverse nerve damage
  • Nutting it out (4/24/2009) - Nutting it out  Australian Doctor: When Mrs A’s four-month-old baby had an anaphylactic reaction to peanuts, she was frightened and alarmed. “Almost immediately his lips became swollen, his eyes started watering and he began wheezing,” she remembers. “I realised what was happening and rushed straight to the local medical centre, which was just a few … More Nutting it out
  • New Zealand to consolidate agricultural research (3/18/2009) - New Zealand to consolidate agricultural research Nature News: Agricultural research in New Zealand is facing an unprecedented shake-up under a proposal to merge two of the country’s leading centres. The plan would see AgResearch – one of the largest Crown Research Institutes (CRI), the government’s eight research and development (R&D) companies – being absorbed by … More New Zealand to consolidate agricultural research
  • Do you have to be nuts to be a genius? (2/1/2008) - Do you have to be nuts to be a genius? Feb/March 2008 Cosmos: Had Sir Isaac Newton been alive today he would have been a Harry Potter fan. He was fascinated by alchemy and the existence of a philosopher’s stone that could turn any metal into gold. Despite being grounded in the pure sciences and … More Do you have to be nuts to be a genius?
  • A question of good taste (11/29/2006) - Sydney Morning Herald: Snail porridge sounds like something Roald Dahl’s witches or J. K. Rowling’s magical creatures would eat – and not something that is appetising. Yet, snail porridge is one of the many unusual dishes on the menu at the “best restaurant in the world”: The Fat Duck in Bray, England. Chef Heston Blumenthal … More A question of good taste
  • I know what you’re thinking (11/29/2006) - I know what you’re thinking 12 October, 2006 Sydney Morning Herald: Episodes of Big Brother can teach us a lot about how we communicate, but not in the way you imagine. If you ignore the spoken exchanges of the housemates and look closely at their non-verbal communication, you may find an intriguing sub-text that can … More I know what you’re thinking
  • Blue jean dye kills cancer cells (9/7/2006) - Blue jean dye kills cancer cells BBC News Online, 7 September, 2006 The dye in your blue jeans could soon be used to kill cancer cells, say scientists. UK researchers are employing tiny gold “nanoparticles”, 1/5000th the thickness of a human hair, to deliver the chemical compound directly into cancer cells, tearing them apart instantly. … More Blue jean dye kills cancer cells
  • Sequencing the dog genome (1/20/2006) - Sequencing the dog genome The Science Show, ABC Radio National, 21 January, 2006 Tasha, a rusty coloured boxer with large brown eyes and a snowy white chest made history last year by being the first dog to have her genome completely sequenced. There wasn’t as much hype surrounding the publication of the dog genome as … More Sequencing the dog genome
  • Monkey business over (1/25/2004) - Monkey business over BioMedNet, 5 January, 2004 Three years after applying for planning permission to build a new neuroscience center to house their non-human primates, Cambridge University’s application was finally accepted, generating an almost audible sigh of relief from many scientists across the UK. The ‘state-of-the-art’ facility at Cambridge University will benefit the animals housed … More Monkey business over
  • Weapons in ancient China (11/22/2003) - The Science Show, ABC Radio National, 22 November, 2003 Summary: On a visit to China, Branwen Morgan visited the terracotta warriors and was intrigued to find that some of the ancient weapons appeared to be chrome-plated. Excerpt: In 1974, while drilling for water a peasant farmer in the Chinese province of Shaanxi stumbled across the … More Weapons in ancient China
  • DNA profiles in double-quick time (11/21/2003) - DNA profiles in double-quick time NewScientist, 1 November, 2003 An improved forensic technique could reduce the time taken to DNA profile a suspect. The new procedure can rapidly identify DNA within a wide range of samples left at crime scenes, such as hair, blood, skin and saliva. http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg18024192.300-dna-profiles-in-doublequick-time.html
  • A new cause of hypertension (10/1/2002) - A new cause of hypertension Australasian Science, October, 2002 Excerpt: Genetic hypertension in humans commonly coexists with other disorders such as insulin resistance and visceral obesity, and is sometimes referred to as “Syndrome X”. This complication, along with the knowledge that there are many contributers to the regulation of blood pressure, has made the identification … More A new cause of hypertension
  • Buenos Aires: Tango makes way for science (1/1/2002) - Buenos Aires: Tango makes way for science Trends in Neurosciences, 1 January, 2002, p13 Branwen Morgan and Marcelo Rubinstein Research Update from The Joint International and American Neurochemistry Society Meeting, in collaboration with SAN (Sociedad Argentina de Neuroquímica), Buenos Aires, Argentina, 26–31 August 2001. http://www.cell.com/trends/neurosciences/issue?pii=S0166-2236(00)X0081-1
  • Are genes unfashionable? (7/2/2001) - Are genes unfashionable? Australian Medicine, 2 July, 2001 Excerpt: Gene therapy trials have been under intense scrutiny since the death of Jesse Gelsinger in 1999. His death was the first to be directly attributed to gene therapy, and this has raised questions about monitoring, under-reporting of adverse effects, and the financial benefits to researchers involved … More Are genes unfashionable?
  • Landscapes of the mind (11/1/2000) - Journey to the centre of the brain Newton, November – December, 2000 Take a journey on a train of thought; travel across the landscapes of the mind. If we look through our skull at our brain, the physical landscape seems unremarkable: pinky-grey in  colour, the surface covered with grooves and ridges flowing with rivers and … More Landscapes of the mind