Bldg-73-tisThis blog is part of the 'Blog a Book project entitled: The Inside Story -- a history of the Microbiology Department (University of Otago) from 1950 - 2010. Blogs are usually shown in reverse chronological order (from newest to oldest). For a 'Blog a Book' the posts are changed to be chronologically displayed (from oldest to newest) as one would in reading a book.  Click on the building image in the upper left corner of this blog post to navigated to the beginning of the 'The Inside Story'..

  The report on the research activities of the Department of Microbiology from 1970 to 1979 provides a window into the activities of the teaching Staff members. It also lists  the research projects of the postgraduates, the degrees awarded and the scientific articles published. (This report is available as a pdf download or online from Research Gate) Below is a brief thumbnail of the contents.

Teaching Staff

Dr B. L. Gibbins -- Autoimmunity and autoimmune disease
Dr J.F.T. Griffin -- Immunology
Dr M. J. Holmes -- Epidemiology of human viruses
Dr J. Kalmakoff -- Insect and molecular virology
Professor J. S. Loutit (Chairman) -- Genetics of Pseudomonas aeruginosa
Assoc. Prof. M. W. Loutit -- Microbial ecology of soil and water
Dr J. S. Pillai -- Biological control of insect pests
Assoc. Prof. J.M.B. Smith -- Mycology
Dr J. R. Tagg -- Streptococcal bacteriocins
Dr G. W. Tannock -- Gastrointestinal bacteriology
Dr C. N. A. Trotman -- Electron microscope unit

MRC Virus Research Unit Staff

Dr F. J. Austin -- Acting Director, Epidemiology and ecology of arboviruses
Dr T. Maguire -- Hepatitis and ecology of animal influenza viruses


During the chairmanship of Professor John Miles (1955 - 1976) annual reports of the departmental research activities were regularly published locally and made for interesting reading decades later. With the advent of websites, which are constantly updated, there is little in the way of archival material being maintained. 

The Department had outgrown its accommodation four times. From its original location in a small basement room in the hospital it was moved first to a larger room and then across the street to the Medical School. In 1948 it expanded into an adjacent building and finally in 1975 the Department occupied its own eight-storeyed building away from the Medical School complex.

Since postgraduate studies began in 1952, the Department has awarded one D.Sc. degree, thirty-five Ph.D. degrees, thirty-nine M.Sc. degrees and fifty-two postgraduate diplomas. Many of the students who earned these degrees and diplomas now fill important teaching, research and administrative positions both in New Zealand and overseas.

The teaching activities of the Department are now spread over four University Faculties, namely Medicine, Science, Dentistry and Home Science, in which ten undergraduate courses are given each year.