Australian Twin Registry
The ATR brings twins and researchers together to benefit the health of twins and all Australians


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Issue 3 Summer 2012

Give the gift of your time

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Help us this Christmas to help others. By participating in twin studies, you can help researchers to further our understanding of factors in health and wellbeing. Learn more about our current studies urgently needing twins.

NAPLAN educational testing
NAPLAN testing and its relevance to the national educational curriculum has been hotly debated of late. This study has therefore already generated quite a lot of interest amongst families of twins and multiples.

The aims of the study are to identify and investigate the genetic and environmental factors that may influence how well a child performs in NAPLAN tests. It is hoped that this information will better inform educational authorities and policy makers about the roles of schools and teachers in children’s rates of academic progress. Learn more about what is involved and eligibility.

HIV diversification (includes free zygosity testing)
HIV continues to be a topical issue. HIV is a challenging virus to treat as it constantly mutates and affects everyone differently. It is believed that the immune system is key to discovering how, and why, changes in the way the body responds to the virus occur. The researchers aim to stimulate the immune system of one twin so they can compare the changes in how it responds when given a ‘shake up’. Learn more about what is involved and eligibility.

Genetic factors in heartbeat rhythm
The rhythm of the heartbeat is controlled by electrical signals. These signals can be recorded as a heart tracing or ECG. Within the normal, healthy population, there are variations in heart tracing (ECG) characteristics. It is thought that these variations are caused by differences in how each person’s genetic code (DNA) is used by the body. Some of these variations may protect against abnormal heartbeats whilst others may increase the risk.

This study aims to assess the relationship between the heart tracing appearance on the 24-hour ECG monitor (Holter) and differences in the DNA between different people. Learn more about what is involved and eligibility.

Atrial Fibrillation
It is believed that inherited heart defects can predispose sufferers to AF but what genes are involved and the way in which changes in these genes can lead to AF are not well understood. The researchers are aiming to better define the genetic changes that can predispose to AF and to look at interactions between genes and acquired (environmental) factors that result in dilatation of the atria and increased AF risk. Learn more about what is involved and eligibility.

It is the season of gift giving and a very precious gift that only you can give is the donation of your time to a twin study.

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Copyright 2012: Australian Twin Registry, Level 3, 207 Bouverie Street, Carlton, Victoria 3010
The ATR is a not-for-profit service supported by an Enabling Grant from the National Health and Medical Research Council and administered by the University of Melbourne.