89,483 results

  • Towards optimal life cycle management in a road maintenance setting using DEA

    Rouse, Antony; Chui, Tony (2009)

    Journal article
    The University of Auckland Library

    This paper focuses on local road aspects of the highway system and aims to assess how efficiently, effectively and economically the 73 Territorial Local Authorities (TLAs) in New Zealand have maintained their respective local road networks from a life cycle perspective. Measures of quality, quantity and cost, together with nondiscretionary measures of environmental factors, are incorporated in Data Envelopment Analysis to evaluate each TLA???s performance in terms of efficiency, effectiveness and economy. TLAs that have high performance on all three measures provide a best practice indication of the optimal maintenance activity mix to undertake. In this study, the best practice mix of expenditure is 59% routine maintenance, 27% resealing and 14% rehabilitation.

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  • Epigenetic regulation of endometrium during the menstrual cycle

    Munro, Sheryl; Farquhar, Cynthia; Mitchell, Murray; Ponnampalam, Anna (2010-05)

    Journal article
    The University of Auckland Library

    The endometrium undergoes morphological and functional changes during the menstrual cycle which are essential for uterine receptivity. These changes are driven by estrogen and progesterone and involve the fine control of many different genes???several of which have been identified as being epigenetically regulated. Epigenetic modification may therefore influence the functional changes in the endometrium required for successful implantation. There is, however, only limited information on epigenetic regulation in endometrium. We review the potential role of epigenetic regulation of key processes during the menstrual cycle and present our own findings following a preliminary study into global acetylation levels in the human endometrium. A changing epigenetic state is associated with the differentiation of stem cells into different lineages and thus may be involved in endometrial regeneration. Histone acetylation is implicated in the vascular endothelial growth factor pathway during angiogenesis, and studies using histone deacetylase inhibitors suggest an involvement in endometrial proliferation and differentiation. The processes of decidualization and implantation are also associated with epigenetic change and epigenetic modulators show variable expression across the menstrual cycle. Our own studies found that endometrial global histone acetylation, as determined by western blotting, changed throughout the menstrual cycle and correlated well with expected transcription activity during the different phases. This suggests that epigenetics may be involved in the regulation of endometrial gene expression during the menstrual cycle and that abnormal epigenetic modifications may therefore be associated with implantation failure and early pregnancy loss as well as with other endometrial pathologies.

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  • Outcome of combined melatonin and bright light treatments for delayed sleep phase disorder

    Samaranayake, CB; Fernando, Antonio; Warman, Guy (2010-07)

    Journal article
    The University of Auckland Library

    A letter to the editor is presented regarding the use of combined melatonin and bright light treatments for delayed sleep phase disorder (DSPD) in the previous issue.

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  • Evaluation of consent for peer physical examination: students reflect on their clinical skills learning experience

    Wearn, Andrew; Bhoopatkar, Harsh (2006)

    Journal article
    The University of Auckland Library

    Introduction??? Early clinical skills teaching often requires students to learn through examining one another. This model should acknowledge ethical, practical and individual issues, disclosure and identification of abnormalities. Consent to peer physical examination (PPE) is usually expected rather than discussed and sought. Objectives??? We sought to evaluate a formal written consent process for PPE and to explore students' views of this approach. Method??? A survey tool was designed and distributed to all years 2 and 3 students in the Auckland University medical programme (2004). Results were analysed using univariate statistics and thematic analysis. Results??? The response rate was 57% (146/258). Most students had read the participant information sheet prior to signing, with 78% giving consent. They had not felt coerced and the in-course experience matched the ???promise???. Comments included: PPE gave insights into the ???patient???s world', encouraged peer learning and raised some professional issues. More than 95% of students took the examination role at least once (less likely if female, P = 0.002). Some European, Maori and Pacific students never took the role; all Asian students did at least once. Students preferred PPE in groups consisting of ???friends???. The task influenced group composition by sex (P < 0.0001) but not ethnicity. Discussion??? Students accept and support a formal consent process. PPE participation rates are similar to predictions. The experience must match the promises made. Formal preparation alone might have produced similar student outcomes. Female students are more selective about tasks undertaken. The influence of ethnicity and the effect on future behaviour and attitudes needs further exploration.

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  • Counselling women whose lives have been seriously disrupted by depression: What professional counsellors can learn from New Zealand women’s stories of recovery.

    Wilson, Jan; Giddings, L (2010)

    Journal article
    The University of Auckland Library

    This article presents some of the wisdom emerging from a study of the narratives of 18 New Zealand women whose lives had been seriously disrupted by depression. While a huge body of research exists addressing recovery from depression, most of it has focused on the dominant professional solutions of medication and therapy. In this study, the knowledge comes from women who found support for recovery outside the "expert" mainstream. Counsellors can learn from the "lay" solutions and understandings experienced by these women. The major conclusions drawn from the analysis of the stories are discussed in this article. These emphasise the gendered and holistic nature of depression and recovery, and the importance of distinguishing between "chocolate" solutions that address the symptoms, and "meaning-making" solutions that address the deeper matters that often underpin depression. The findings also challenge the need to distinguish between a major depressive disorder and dysthymia when supporting women to find their own formulae for recovery. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]

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  • Students' stories of challenges and gains in learning cognitive therapy.

    Fraser, N; Wilson, Jan (2011)

    Journal article
    The University of Auckland Library

    Counsellor educators are responsible not only for teaching counselling students but also for facilitating their personal development processes during training. An understanding of student learning experiences can support counsellor educators in this task. This qualitative New Zealand study extends the examination of reflective practice by researching student reflections on their learning rather than the reflections of the educators. Using narrative method, it explored seven undergraduate students??? experiences of learning cognitive therapy. Findings suggest that students experienced varied challenges during this process. These included the demands of: managing preconceptions, changing counselling models, matching student learning with tutor teaching styles, and translating the model cross-culturally. Out of these challenges emerged beneficial learning for students, including valuing self-development through self-practice, a deeper empathy for clients, and a growing perception of themselves as competent to apply cognitive therapy. This paper concludes by recommending some ways in which counsellor educators could support students in learning cognitive therapy

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  • Tetracycline treatment retards the onset and slows the progression of diabetes in human amylin transgenic mice

    Aitken, Jacqueline; Loomes, KM; Scott, DW; Reddy, Shivanand; Phillips, Anthony; Virijevic, G; Fernando, C; Zhang, Shaoping; Broadhurst, R; L'Huillier, PJ; Cooper, Garth (2009)

    Journal article
    The University of Auckland Library

    OBJECTIVE--Aggregation of human amylin/islet amyloid polypeptide (hA/hIAPP) into small soluble [beta]-sheet-containing oligomers is linked to islet [beta]-cell degeneration and the pathogenesis of type 2 diabetes. Here, we used tetracycline, which modifies hA/hIAPP oligomerization, to probe mechanisms whereby hA/hIAPP causes diabetes in hemizygous hA/hIAPP-transgenic mice. RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS--We chronically treated hemizygous hA/hIAPP transgenic mice with oral tetracycline to determine its effects on rates of diabetes initiation, progression, and survival. RESULTS--Homozygous mice developed severe spontaneous diabetes due to islet [beta]-cell loss. Hemizygous transgenic animals also developed spontaneous diabetes, although severity was less and progression rates slower. Pathogenesis was characterized by initial islet [beta]-cell dysfunction followed by progressive [beta]-cell loss. Islet amyloid was absent from hemizygous animals with early-onset diabetes and correlated positively with longevity. Some long-lived nondiabetic hemizygous animals also had large isletamyloid areas, showing that amyloid itself was not intrinsically cytotoxic. Administration of tetracycline dose-dependently ameliorated hyperglycemia and polydipsia, delayed rates of diabetes initiation and progression, and increased longevity compared with water-treated controls. CONCLUSIONS--This is the first report to show that treating hA/hIAPP transgenic mice with a modifier of hA/hIAPP misfolding can ameliorate their diabetic phenotype. Fibrillar amyloid was neither necessary nor sufficient to cause diabetes and indeed was positively correlated with longevity therein, whereas early-to mid-stage diabetes was associated with islet [beta]-cell dysfunction followed by [beta]-cell loss. Interventions capable of suppressing misfolding in soluble hA/hIAPP oligomers rather than mature fibrils may have potential for treating or preventing type 2 diabetes.

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  • Medical students' attitudes towards peer physical examination: findings from an international cross-sectional and longitudinal study

    Rees, CE; Wearn, Andrew; Vnuk, A; Sato, TJ (2009)

    Journal article
    The University of Auckland Library

    Although studies have begun to shed light on medical students??? attitudes towards peer physical examination (PPE), they have been conducted at single sites, and have generally not examined changes in medical students??? attitudes over time. Employing both cross-sectional and longitudinal designs, the current study examines medical students??? attitudes towards PPE at schools from different geographical and cultural regions and assess changes in their attitudes over their first year of medical study. Students at six schools (Peninsula, UK; Durham, UK; Auckland, New Zealand; Flinders, Australia; Sapporo, Japan and Li Ka Shing, Hong Kong) completed the Examining Fellow Students (EFS) questionnaire near the start of their academic year (T1), and students at four schools (Peninsula, Durham, Auckland and Flinders) completed the EFS for a second time, around the end of their academic year (T2). Univariate and multivariate analyses revealed a high level of acceptance for PPE of non-intimate body regions amongst medical students from all schools (greater than 83%, hips, at T1 and 94.5%, hips and upper body, at T2). At T1 and T2, students??? willingness to engage in PPE was associated with their gender, ethnicity, religiosity and school. Typically, students least comfortable with PPE at T1 and T2 were female, non-white, religious and studying at Auckland. Although students??? attitudes towards PPE were reasonably stable over their first year of study, and after exposure to PPE, we did find some statistically significant differences in attitudes between T1 and T2. Interestingly, attitude changes were consistently predicted by gender, even when controlling for school. While male students??? attitudes towards PPE were relatively stable over time, females??? attitudes were changeable. In this paper, we discuss our findings in light of existing research and theory, and discuss their implications for educational practice and further research.

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  • The anatomy of emergence with a focus upon capital formation

    Endres, Anthony; Harper, DA (2012)

    Journal article
    The University of Auckland Library

    Emergence is a unifying theme of both evolutionary economics and complex systems theory. In spite of this centrality, emergence in economics has not been subject to an extensive critical analysis. This paper remedies this deficit. We identify several conditions that economic patterns (i.e. rule-systems, structures) must satisfy to qualify as emergent: (1) material realization (emergent patterns are realized in physical structures and processes); (2) coherence (pattern is not a mere aggregate but a systemic whole); (3) non-distributivity (pattern possesses global properties absent from its parts); (4) structure dependence (systemic properties depend upon connective structure). These four core features are common to all forms of emergence in economics. Evolutionary economic systems also exhibit extra-strength versions of emergence, which require that patterns possess one or more additional features: (5) genuine novelty; (6) unpredictability in principle; and (7) irreducibility. We introduce three basic forms of emergence that occur in economic systems???minimal, diachronic and synchronic emergence???and apply these ideas to capital formation at all levels of economic order. The economy-wide capital structure exhibits strongly emergent properties (both diachronic and synchronic) that depend on its structural and functional organization; it is not a mere aggregate of capital goods. Within the realm of capital phenomena, we also compare the distinguishing characteristics of emergent and spontaneous (self-organizing) orders. We provide a case study of the iPhone as an emergent capital pattern to illustrate conditions (1)???(7) above and the different types of emergence.

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  • Further support of the role of CYP1B1 in patients with Peters Anomaly

    Vincent, Andrea; Billingsley, G; Priston, M; Glaser, T; Oliver, E; Walter, MA; Ritch, R; Levin, AV; Heon, E (2006)

    Journal article
    The University of Auckland Library

    Purpose: Peters anomaly is a developmental anomaly of the eye frequently associated with glaucoma. The aim of this study was to further define the molecular basis of this condition. Methods: The role of four candidate genes implicated in ocular development or glaucoma, PAX6, PITX2, MYOC, and CYP1B1, was studied in 15 patients with Peters anomaly. Mutational analysis used a combination of single strand conformation polymorphism (SSCP) and direct cycle sequencing. Results: Four mutations in CYP1B1 were found in 3/15 (20%) affected individuals compared with 1/140 (0.7%) control individuals. Conclusions: This study supports the role of CYP1B1 as a causative gene in Peters anomaly. Furthermore, this emphasizes the broad range of phenotypic expression for CYP1B1 mutations, and its role in eye development.

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  • The effect of DNA methylation inhibitor 5-Aza-2'-deoxycytidine on human endometrial stromal cells.

    Logan, Philip; Ponnampalam, Anna; Rahnama, F; Lobie, Peter; Mitchell, Murray (2010-11)

    Journal article
    The University of Auckland Library

    Decidualization, the differentiation of endometrial stromal cells is a crucial step for successful implantation of an embryo, development of the placenta and completion of pregnancy to term. Epigenetic mechanisms are thought to be strongly involved in the regulation of processes controlling implantation, placentation, organ formation and foetal growth. Recent studies suggest that decreased DNA methylation facilitates a receptive endometrium. Hence, the aim of this project was to compare the transcriptional profile changes induced by the inhibitor of DNA methylation, 5-Aza-2'-deoxycytidine (AZA) to the transcriptional changes that happen during decidualization.

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  • Frank Graham's Case for Flexible Exchange Rates: A Doctrinal Perspective

    Endres, Anthony (2008)

    Journal article
    The University of Auckland Library

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  • Retinal haemorrhages in inflicted traumatic brain injury: the ophthalmologist in court.

    Vincent, Andrea; Kelly, Niall (2010-07)

    Journal article
    The University of Auckland Library

    Child abuse is a significant social and public health problem in many societies. One particular form of physical abuse is inflicted traumatic brain injury (ITBI) - the so-called 'Shaken Baby Syndrome'. One of the key features associated with ITBI is characteristic ocular findings - only observed on fundal examination. It is crucial not to miss the diagnosis of ITBI as there may be implications for the safety of the child. The ophthalmologist is one key contributor to the process required to make the diagnosis of ITBI accurately and on the basis of all the relevant evidence. This article discusses some medicolegal implications of examining a child with retinal haemorrhages in the context of suspected ITBI, with practical advice for the ophthalmologist to be as objective and prepared as possible. The scientific validity of some alternative explanations advanced in court is discussed, with a strong emphasis on the literature.

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  • Self-case study as a catalyst for personal development in cognitive therapy training

    Fraser, N; Wilson, Jan (2010)

    Journal article
    The University of Auckland Library

    Personal development is a vital requirement of counsellor development, and educators need to consider how best to promote and support students’ personal development throughout training. ‘Self-case study’ can provide both learning and personal development opportunities for counselling students. This qualitative narrative study explores seven students’ perspectives about their experiences of completing a self-case study as a learning requirement for a compulsory introductory course in cognitive therapy at undergraduate level. Unstructured individual interviews were used for data collection. Data analysis involved identifying themes and analysing the narrative structure of stories. The findings emphasized the view that self-case study provides useful learning opportunities in the areas of theory, practice and personal development. Most participants described transformational life changes resulting from completing a self-case study. This paper presents selected findings. The ethical issues and limitations of this study are discussed. Self-case study is recommended as a potentially effective education strategy.

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  • Application of the computer code TOUGH2 to the simulation of supercritical conditions in geothermal systems

    Croucher, Adrian; OSullivan, Michael (2008-12)

    Journal article
    The University of Auckland Library

    At the high pressures and temperatures found in deep geothermal systems, supercritical conditions can occur. Current numerical geothermal simulators are either not capable of modelling these conditions, or can do so only at significantly reduced computation speed. This paper describes modifications to the TOUGH2 simulator to extend its applicability. It employs the updated IAPWS-97 thermodynamic formulation, and uses density and temperature as primary thermodynamic variables under supercritical conditions. Results from test problems are in agreement with results produced by other simulators, giving confidence that the simulator can be used for modelling deep geothermal reservoirs. (c) 2008 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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  • Python scripting libraries for subsurface fluid and heat flow simulations with TOUGH2 and SHEMAT

    Wellmann JF; Croucher AE; Regenauer-Lieb K (2012)

    Journal article
    The University of Auckland Library

    Numerical simulations of subsurface fluid and heat flow are commonly controlled manually via input files or from graphical user interfaces (GUIs). Manual editing of input files is often tedious and error-prone, while GUIs typically limit the full capability of the simulator. Neither approach lends itself to automation, which is desirable for more complex simulations. We propose an alternative approach based on the use of scripting. To this end we have developed Python libraries for scripting subsurface simulations using the SHEMAT and TOUGH2 simulators. For many problems the entire modeling process including grid generation, model setup, execution, post-processing and analysis of results can be carried out from a single Python script. Through example problems we demonstrate some of the potential power of the scripting approach, which does not only make model setup simpler and less error-prone, but also facilitates more complex simulations involving, for example, multiple model runs with varying parameters (e.g. permeabilities, heat inputs, and the level of grid refinement). It is also possible to apply the developed methods for extending the functionality of graphical user interfaces. Basing our approach on the Python language makes it simple to take advantage of other libraries available for scientific computation, with sophisticated analysis of results often a matter of a single function call. We envisage many other possible applications of the approach, including linking with geological modeling software, running stochastic ensembles of models and hybrid modeling using multiple interacting simulators.

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  • Redox status of acute pancreatitis as measured by cyclic voltammetry: Initial rodent studies to assess disease severity

    Mittal, A; Flint, RS; Fanous, MY; Delahunt, B; Kilmartin, Paul; Cooper, GJS; Windsor, JA; Phillips, Anthony (2008)

    Journal article
    The University of Auckland Library

    Objective: To determine whether serum antioxidant capacity as measured by the electrochemical technique cyclic voltammetry could be used to resolve differences in the severity of an inflammatory disease such as acute pancreatitis. Design: Experimental animal study. Setting: Animal laboratory, Department of Surgery, Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences, University of Auckland, New Zealand. Subjects: Male Wistar rats. Interventions: A total of 48 inbred male Wistar rats were studied in five experimental groups. Group 1 (baseline reference, immediate euthanasia, n 14) had no surgical intervention. Group 2 (sham, n 9) had identical surgical procedures to the pancreatitis groups except for the intraductal infusion. Groups 3???5 (n 9, n 10, and n 6, respectively) had acute pancreatitis induced by the pancreatic intraductal infusion of 3%, 4%, or 5% sodium taurocholate, respectively. Groups 2???5 were killed after 12 hrs. Measurements and Main Results: Cyclic voltammetry involves scanning the voltage of a working electrode while recording the anodic current produced as the low molecular weight antioxidants in the solution are oxidized on the surface of the working electrode. The current produced is proportional to the combined concentration of the antioxidants. There was a significant positive correlation of the first cyclic voltammetric peak maximum with pancreatic histologic severity (Spearman???s r .51, p .007) and with a number of other markers of systemic severity, notably bicarbonate (r .57, p .002), base excess (r .65, p < .001), urea (r .68, p < .001), and calcium (r .60, p .008). The first cyclic voltammetric peak maximum was superior at indicating the severity of the disease state compared with a standard method of total antioxidant capacity measurement. Conclusions: In experimental pancreatitis, the first cyclic voltammetric peak maximum showed significant correlations with histologic and systemic indices of severity. Further clinical studies are now needed to define the role of cyclic voltammetry in monitoring the progression of this and other severe illness in the critical care setting.

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  • A systematic review of experimental treatments for mitochondrial dysfunction in sepsis and multiple organ dysfunction syndrome

    Dare, AJ; Phillips, Anthony; Hickey, Anthony; Mittal, A; Loveday, BPT; Thompson, NM; Windsor, John (2009)

    Journal article
    The University of Auckland Library

    Sepsis and multiple organ dysfunction syndrome (MODS) are major causes of morbidity and mortality in the intensive care unit. Recently mitochondrial dysfunction has been proposed as a key early cellular event in critical illness. A growing body of experimental evidence suggests that mitochondrial therapies are effective in sepsis and MODS. The aim of this article is to undertake a systematic review of the current experimental evidence for the use of therapies for mitochondrial dysfunction during sepsis and MODS and to classify these mitochondrial therapies. A search of the MEDLINE and PubMed databases (1950 to July 2009) and a manual review of reference lists were conducted to find experimental studies containing data on the efficacy of mitochondrial therapies in sepsis and sepsis-related MODS. Fifty-one studies were included in this review. Five categories of mitochondrial therapies were defined???substrate provision, cofactor provision, mitochondrial antioxidants, mitochondrial reactive oxygen species scavengers, and membrane stabilizers. Administration of mitochondrial therapies during sepsis was associated with improvements in mitochondrial electron transport system function, oxidative phosphorylation, and ATP production and a reduction in cellular markers of oxidative stress. Amelioration of proinflammatory cytokines, caspase activation, and prevention of the membrane permeability transition were reported. Restoration of mitochondrial bioenergetics was associated with improvements in hemodynamic parameters, organ function, and overall survival. A substantial body of evidence from experimental studies at both the cellular and the organ level suggests a beneficial role for the administration of mitochondrial therapies in sepsis and MODS. We expect that mitochondrial therapies will have an increasingly important role in the management of sepsis and MODS. Clinical trials are now required.

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  • Organ failure and infection of pancreatic necrosis as determinants of mortality in patients with acute pancreatitis.

    Petrov, Maxim; Shanbhag, S; Chakraborty, Mandira; Phillips, Anthony; Windsor, John (2010-09)

    Journal article
    The University of Auckland Library

    There is no consistency between the individual studies in the literature on whether organ failure (OF) or infected pancreatic necrosis (IPN) is the main determinant of severity in acute pancreatitis. We aimed to statistically aggregate the available data and determine the pooled influence of OF and IPN on mortality in patients with acute pancreatitis.

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  • TGFBI Mutational Analysis in a New Zealand Population of Inherited Corneal Dystrophy Patients.

    Vincent, Andrea; De Karolyi, BH; Patel, Dipika; Wheeldon, Catherine; McGhee, Charles (2010)

    Journal article
    The University of Auckland Library

    Aim The corneal dystrophies represent a group of clinically and genetically heterogeneous, inherited diseases, often resulting in bilateral opacification of the cornea, and may require penetrating keratoplasty. Mutations in the transforming growth factor beta-induced (TGFBI) gene segregate with a wide range of phenotypically heterogeneous corneal dystrophies. Many of the other dystrophies remain without molecular characterisation. This study aimed to characterise the molecular basis for corneal disease in a New Zealand population. Methods Nineteen unrelated individuals affected with a corneal dystrophy (granular, fleck, lattice, posterior polymorphous) and their family members were recruited, a pedigree obtained and their dystrophy extensively phenotyped. After informed consent, samples were taken for DNA extraction. PCR and sequencing of all coding exons of TGFBI was undertaken. Results All five patients with granular dystrophy had the R555W mutation, and H626P was identified in an intermediate dystrophy of Bowman layer pedigree. No other mutations were detected including in the stromal dystrophy cases. Conclusion Mutational analysis of TGFBI in a small population has identified sequence changes consistent with previously identified genotype???phenotype correlations. A new genotype???phenotype association was also characterised. No mutations were identified in some individuals/pedigrees suggesting greater genetic heterogeneity than is currently known in this group of disorders.

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