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Biological Sciences×

Brunel University London, Full Time MSc Degrees in Biological Sciences

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This course offers you the choice of taking a broad-based MSc that combines a range of self-selected modules from the two specialist pathways. Read more

About the Course

This course offers you the choice of taking a broad-based MSc that combines a range of self-selected modules from the two specialist pathways: Human Performance and Sport Psychology.

Aims

To build upon your existing knowledge and extend your understanding of selected areas in sport sciences
To provide you with experiences designed to enhance critical analysis and independence of thought
To develop your understanding of, and competence in, research methods and statistical analysis
To enable you to critically evaluate and initiate relevant research
To provide a sound and secure basis from which you may proceed to a research degree (eg PhD)

The Sport, Health and Exercise Sciences enjoy a prominent position within the University, building upon traditions that stem from Borough Road College – the oldest teacher-training college in the British Commonwealth. We have a long-standing reputation for excellence in teaching and an impressive record of research and publication which consistently attracts high-calibre students, including high level sportsmen and sportswomen who successfully combine study with training and competition.

Our students have varied backgrounds and interests – some are keen to gain knowledge about sports performance, others are keen to explore the links between sport and, for example, community, education, health, and politics. Sport is a hugely popular form of culture around the world and the academic study of sport has grown in popularity to meet the demands of the global sports industry. In parallel with these developments, sport sciences courses at Brunel are up-to-date, dynamic, and forward-looking. If you are interested in studying sport or forging a sport-related career, we welcome your application to study for a postgraduate degree in sport sciences at Brunel.

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This course primarily focuses on the physiological and biomechanical elements of the human performer, while also providing you with grounding in the lab techniques used by physiologists and biomechanists. Read more

About the Course

This course primarily focuses on the physiological and biomechanical elements of the human performer, while also providing you with grounding in the lab techniques used by physiologists and biomechanists. The course serves as ideal preparation for those wishing to pursue accreditation as a Sport Scientist through the British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences (BASES).

Aims

To build on your existing knowledge and extend your understanding of applied physiology and sport and exercise biomechanics
To provide experiences designed to enhance critical analysis and independence of thought
To develop your understanding of, and competence in, research methods and statistical analysis
To enable you to critically evaluate and initiate project work relevant to applied physiology and sport and exercise biomechanics
To provide a sound and secure basis from which you may proceed to a research degree (eg PhD) or a career as an applied sport scientist with specialist knowledge in applied physiology and sport and exercise biomechanics.
To provide an integrated study programme that is compatible with current guidelines and benchmarks provided by or through BASES

Special Features

The School of Sport and Education enjoys a prominent position within the University, building upon traditions that stem from Borough Road College - the oldest teacher-training college in the British Commonwealth.

We have a long-standing reputation for excellence in teaching and an impressive record of research and publication which consistently attracts high-calibre students, including high level sportsmen and sportswomen who successfully combine study with training and competition.

Our students have varied backgrounds and interests. Some are keen to gain knowledge about sports performance, others are keen to explore the links between sport and, for example, community, education, health, and politics.

Sport is a hugely popular form of culture around the world and the academic study of sport has grown in popularity to meet the demands of the global sports industry. In parallel with these developments, sport sciences courses at Brunel are up-to-date, dynamic, and forward-looking.

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This degree programme provides an exciting opportunity for advanced study in Evolutionary Psychology, ie psychological science informed by explicit consideration of the fact that the human mind, like the human body, is a product of evolutionary processes. Read more
This degree programme provides an exciting opportunity for advanced study in Evolutionary Psychology, ie psychological science informed by explicit consideration of the fact that the human mind, like the human body, is a product of evolutionary processes. It is taught in association with the Centre for Culture and Evolutionary Psychology (C-CEP), and the Centre for Cognition and Neuroimaging (CCNI) at Brunel.

The degree programme aims to provide students with an understanding of how evolutionary theory can provide a framework for the study of human psychology and behaviour. Students will acquire comprehensive knowledge of important theoretical issues, research findings and recent advances in evolutionary psychology. You will study concepts, findings and recent advances in evolutionary biology, animal behaviour and behavioural ecology that are critical for research in evolutionary psychology. Moreover there will be the opportunity to take an optional module in either Cognitive Neuroscience or Cross-Cultural Psychology.

The programme team includes, Nicholas Pound PhD (McMaster), Andrew Clark PhD (McMaster), Michael Price PhD (UCSB) and Achim Schützwohl PhD (University of Bielefeld). In addition, there are opportunities for dissertation research projects to be co-supervised by psychologists with expertise in other areas of Psychology (eg cognitive neuroscience, social psychology).

At Brunel we have extensive facilities for human subjects research (including EEG, fMRI, motion capture and 3D body scanning).

Who is this Degree For?
This course is particularly suited to students in the life sciences or social sciences who are interested in finding out how principles from evolutionary biology can provide a framework for the scientific study of human psychology and behaviour.

Course Content
Modules are subject to variation and students are advised to check with the School on whether a particular module of interest will be running in their year of entry. At the time of printing, planned modules are as follows:
Core modules: Evolutionary Biology and Research Methods; Evolutionary Psychology; Animal Behaviour and Behavioural Ecology
Optional modules: Cognitive Neuroscience; Cross-Cultural Variations in Psychological Findings. Check the web for the latest updates.

Assessment
Assessment is by coursework (including term papers and oral presentations), examinations and a dissertation of up to 15,000 words.

Careers
The MSc will provide students with the knowledge and skills required to go on to do PhD research not just in Evolutionary Psychology, but also in other areas of Psychology and the Biological and Social Sciences. Moreover, students will acquire analytic and research skills that will be useful in diverse areas of employment including governmental and non-government research organisations, and the private sector.

Here is what one of our past students says:

Gillian: "I enjoyed studying for my BSc in Zoology with Evolutionary Psychology at Liverpool University and missed my studies after I graduated. So I took on the Brunel MSc in Evolutionary Psychology part-time alongside my job as a Communications Manager for the Department of Health. The course has deepened my understanding of the subject and I am now considering taking on a PhD. I have also found the learning useful in my work. Many strategic communications campaigns aim to change behaviour – for example to improve hygiene in hospitals or encourage people to eat healthier foods. Such campaigns often use insights from psychology in order to make them more powerful and the MSc has given me a good insight into how and why they work."

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The course aims to provide you with specialist theoretical and practical knowledge and experience of cellular, molecular biology and genetics, and their application to the study of a variety of human diseases. Read more
The course aims to provide you with specialist theoretical and practical knowledge and experience of cellular, molecular biology and genetics, and their application to the study of a variety of human diseases. The course will focus on developing research skills and is designed to enable you to develop the ability to become an independent and creative scientist.
Aims

The MSc Molecular Medicine course aims to provide you with specialist theoretical and practical knowledge and experience of cellular, molecular biology and genetics, and their application to the study of a variety of human diseases. The course will focus on developing research skills and is designed to enable you to develop the ability to become an independent and creative scientist.

Through our enthusiastic, innovative and research-driven approach, the teaching on this course reflects the fast changing nature of biomedical research – with specific emphasis to human genome and molecular medicine.

Special Features

Through an enthusiastic, innovative and research-driven approach, our teaching will reflect the fast changing nature of the biomedical research (with specific emphasis to human genome, molecular medicine and cancer research).

Brunel University London is research led and students attending either course will have the opportunity to conduct a 9-month research dissertation as a part of the MSc course.

Students will be given a choice of research topics and will be normally associated with one of the research centres within Biosciences.

If in full time employment, and attending the course in a part time mode, it may be possible to conduct the research dissertation at the workplace

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This exciting Master’s programme aims to provide specialist theoretical and practical knowledge in molecular and cellular genetics for the study of human disease in the context of the scientific and clinical problem of human cancer. Read more
This exciting Master’s programme aims to provide specialist theoretical and practical knowledge in molecular and cellular genetics for the study of human disease in the context of the scientific and clinical problem of human cancer.

If focuses on the development of research skills in medical genetics and human diseases, and is designed to enable you to develop the ability to become an independent and creative scientist, able to form useful working hypotheses and to analyse data appropriately.

Taught module will focus on how a greater understanding of these processes has created new avenues and targets for the therapeutic intervention for many human diseases.
Aims

The course aims to provide you with specialist theoretical and practical knowledge and experience of cellular, molecular biology and genetics, and their application to the study of human diseases in the context to the scientific and clinical problem of human cancer. The course will focus on developing research skills and is designed to enable you to become an independent and creative scientist.

Through our enthusiastic, innovative and research-driven approach, the teaching on this course reflects the fast changing nature of biomedical research, with specific emphasis to human genome, molecular medicine and cancer research.

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This postgraduate programme in Environmental Science. Pollution and Monitoring provides a rigorous academic treatment of the fundamental scientific principles and practice of assessing and controlling the extent of environmental damage by Man’s activities. Read more
This postgraduate programme in Environmental Science: Pollution and Monitoring provides a rigorous academic treatment of the fundamental scientific principles and practice of assessing and controlling the extent of environmental damage by Man’s activities. The course emphasises the technology and principles behind the processes and techniques related to the reduction of emissions to air, land and water and the effects of pollution.

The course develops understanding of the complex interactions of societies and their environments, and a critical awareness of how these interactions are unevenly experienced. The course seeks to raise your ability to understand the influence of human activities on ecological system including the relationship between hazard and risk. You will be able to study the environmental and technological issues in the management and control of air, soil and water pollution. In addition, you will learn how to collect representative samples of air, soil and water for environmental monitoring. Hands on experience on the use of various analytical techniques and the use of various statistical analyses for data quality assessment (DQA) are also provided.

Accreditation

The MSc in Environmental Science: Pollution and Monitoring is accredited by the Institution of Environmental Sciences (IES) and the Chartered Institution of Water and Environmental Management (CIWEM). This entitles students to free student membership of the IES and CIWEM.

Scholarships

For our September intake we have 2 specific scholarship schemes available: the Queen's Anniversary Prize Scholarships provide 6 x £3000 fee waiver scholarships to our best applicants (no additional application is required for these); and the £4000 Water Conservators Bursary is awarded to one student who writes the essay on water and the environment (some years we split the scholarship between 2 exceptional applicants). Brunel Univeristy London also has some scholarship schemes available for applicants to any MSc programme.

Designed to suit your needs

This MSc course can be taken in part-time (from 1 day a week for 2 years) or full-time (from 2 days a week for 1 years) mode. Students can start in September or January.

Employability

Our alumni have gone on to work in key public and private sector organisations as well as more entrepreneurial pursuits. Employability is a major focus within the university with support for transferable skills, CV and application writing, interview skills and opportunities for internships and work placements.

Course modules

Compulsory modular blocks
- Environmental Monitoring (30 credits)
- Integrated Pollution (30 credits)
- Research and Critical Skills in Environmental Science (15 credits)
- Dissertation (60 credits)


Optional modular blocks
Students normally choose 2 modules from Group A and 1 module from Group B. (If desired, students are also able to choose “1 module from Group A and 2 modules from Group B” or “3 modules from Group A and no modules from Group B” but must understand that this unbalances the 2 terms: 45:75 or 75:45 credits as opposed to 60:60.)

Group A (pick 2)
- Environmental Hazards and Risk (15 credits)
- Environmental Management (15 credits)
- Environment, Health and Societies (15 credits)
- Climate Change: Science and Impacts (15 credits)
- Essentials in Ecotoxicology (15 credits)
- Chemical Regulation and Legislation in the EU (15 credits)
- Biosphere (15 credits)
- Environmental Modelling (15 credits)

Group B (pick 1)
- Sustainable Development in Practice (15 credits)
- Current Practice in Chemical Risk Assessment (15 credits)
- Clean Technology (15 credits)
- Environmental Law (15 credits)
- Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation (15 credits)
- GIS and Data Analysis (15 credits)

Dissertation (60 credits)

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This new and innovative Masters programme caters for the current global need for toxicologists and ecotoxicologists who are competent in conducting hazard and risk evaluation of chemical substances. Read more
This new and innovative Masters programme caters for the current global need for toxicologists and ecotoxicologists who are competent in conducting hazard and risk evaluation of chemical substances.


Aims
The programme aims at providing students with an advanced and up-to-date understanding of the effects of chemicals on human and environmental health and the resulting impact on chemical risk assessment and regulation. The programme covers both human and ecotoxicological risk assessment and includes modules on topical areas, such as mixtures toxicology, endocrine disruption and computational toxicology. Some modules have been designed specifically to be offered as short-term training programmes for professionals


The course is suitable for graduates interested in obtaining a qualification in human and environmental health, as well as students already in full time employment who require either formal qualifications or intend to revalidate their qualifications in toxicology. This will contribute to their continuing professional development (CPD) and towards the requirements for the UK Register of Toxicologists.


Course contents
The MSc in Toxicology and Risk Assessment comprises a total of 8 taught modules, including 6 compulsory modules and 2 (out of 3) optional modules.

Compulsory modules:
• Priority Pollutants and Human Health Effects (Autumn term, 12 weeks)
• Essentials in Ecotoxicology (Autumn term, 12 weeks).
• Designing, Analysing and Interpreting Toxicological Studies (Autumn term, 5 consecutive days)
• Current Practice in Chemical Risk Assessment (Spring term, 5 consecutive days)
• Chemical Regulation and Legislation in the EU (Autumn term, 5 consecutive days)
• Carcinogens and Mutagens (Autumn term, 12 weeks).

Optional Modules: (students will have to complete 2 out of 3 optional modules):
• Mixtures Toxicology and Cumulative Risk Assessment (Spring term, 5 consecutive days)
• Reproductive Toxicology and Endocrine Disruption (Spring term, 12 weeks)
• Computational Toxicology: Modelling and Predicting Toxicity (Spring term, 5 consecutive days)

Dissertation
Depending on student’s interests and their progress through the course, they will have the opportunity to carry out their dissertation with collaborators from Industry and regulatory bodies.

Throughout the course, students will be required to develop a personal development plan, agreed upon with tutors, which will structure and enhance their professional and personal development.


Continuing Professional Development (CPD)
A number of our specialised modules are run as intensive short-courses, which can be taken individually by participants without having to enroll for the full course. The aim is to support professionals already in employment in advancing their knowledge in specific areas, as well as developing their careers.

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How can evolutionary theory help us understand human behaviour?. Do humans have a species-typical psychological design?. What learning mechanisms would have been favoured by natural selection in ancestral environments?. Read more
How can evolutionary theory help us understand human behaviour?
Do humans have a species-typical psychological design?
What learning mechanisms would have been favoured by natural selection in ancestral environments?

This programme provides an exciting opportunity for advanced study in Evolutionary Psychology, ie psychological science informed by explicit consideration of the fact that the human mind, like the human body, is a product of evolutionary processes. This course is particularly suited to students in the life sciences or social sciences who are interested in finding out how principles from evolutionary biology can provide a framework for the scientific study of human psychology and behaviour.
Aims

The degree programme aims to provide students with:

an understanding of how evolutionary theory can provide a framework for the study of psychology and behaviour in both human and non-human species;

knowledge of important theoretical issues, research findings and recent advances in Evolutionary Psychology;

an overview of concepts, findings and recent advances in Evolutionary Biology, Animal Behaviour and Behavioural Ecology that are critical for research in Evolutionary Psychology;

the opportunity to acquire important transferable research skills (eg research design, data analysis, report preparation, seminar presentation);

the opportunity to acquire knowledge of theoretical issues, research findings and recent advances in a related area of psychology (Cognitive Neuroscience or Cross-Cultural Psychology).

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About the Course. How does brain scanning equipment work?. What can brain scanners tell us about brain function?. How do differences in brain structure affect brain function?. Read more
About the Course

How does brain scanning equipment work?
What can brain scanners tell us about brain function?
How do differences in brain structure affect brain function?

Recent years have been characterised by a rapid development of functional imaging technology, with increasing availability worldwide of high resolution scanners for research and clinical applications. Functional brain imaging requires an understanding of current concepts in cognitive neuroscience and psychology, as well as a basic appreciation of neuroimaging techniques and the mathematical and statistical foundations for data analysis.

This programme, the first of its kind in the UK, provides a strong theoretical and practical introduction to the world of neuroimaging research. The course is a good preparation for a PhD in functional brain imaging, or for working as part of a neuroimaging team with fMRI and/or other imaging modalities.
Aims

The rapid development of functional imaging technology and research has contributed to the call for improved education and training in functional imaging. Within this context, the aim of the programme is to provide a strong theoretical and practical introduction to the world of neuroimaging research. It will equip students with a range of practical research skills to enable them to successfully complete research of this kind, either as part of a research team or as an individual.

The course will also provide the necessary training in safety and in the rules of scanner operation, to allow students to conduct a neuroimaging research project under the supervision of an Authorised User on Brunel’s 3T scanner, or else to conduct a project on one of its related ERP imaging or psychological laboratory facilities.

Whether you want to pursue neuroimaging research, or simply become an expert in this important field of science, the Functional Neuroimaging MSc provides the relevant skills and knowledge.

The course is a good preparation for a PhD in functional brain imaging, or for working as part of a neuroimaging team with fMRI and/or other imaging modalities.

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This course is aimed at sport and exercise sciences graduates who wish to further their studies in sport and exercise psychology. Read more

Overview

This course is aimed at sport and exercise sciences graduates who wish to further their studies in sport and exercise psychology. It is excellent preparation for higher research qualifications (e.g., PhD) or practitioner training for becoming an accredited sport and exercise scientist through BASES.

Core Modules

(15 credits unless stated):

Research Methods and Data Analysis (45 credits)
Physical Activity and Health
Dissertation (60 credits)

Plus 60 credits with at least 15 credits from:
Biomechanics of Sport and Exercise
Individual Differences in Sport and Exercise
Social Processes in Sport and Exercise

Remaining credits from:
Professional Development
Applied Sport Physiology (30 credits)
Lab Techniques in Physiology and Biomechanics
Performance Lifestyle
Research and Application in the Psychology of Sports Performance
Psychological Skills for Practitioners

Highlights

*Outstanding Postgraduate Taught Experience Survey (NSS equivalent) ratings
*2014: 100% of student respondents would recommend the course to another prospective student
*Engaging course team with a wealth of teaching, practitioner and research experience

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This course is aimed at sport and exercise sciences graduates who wish to further their studies in physiology and biomechanics sub-disciplines. Read more

Overview

This course is aimed at sport and exercise sciences graduates who wish to further their studies in physiology and biomechanics sub-disciplines. It is excellent preparation for higher research qualifications (e.g., PhD) or practitioner training for becoming an accredited sport and exercise scientist through BASES.

Core Modules

(15 credits unless stated):

Research Methods and Data Analysis (45 credits)
Applied Sports Physiology (30 credits)
Biomechanics of Sport and Exercise
Physical Activity and Health
Dissertation (60 credits)

Plus
Laboratory Techniques in Physiology and Biomechanics OR
Performance Lifestyle

Highlights

*Outstanding Postgraduate Taught Experience Survey (NSS equivalent) ratings
*2014: 100% of student respondents would recommend the course to another prospective student
*Engaging course team with a wealth of teaching, practitioner and research experience

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As well as giving a solid scientific understanding, the course also addresses commercial, ethical, legal and regulatory requirements, aided by extensive industrial contacts. Read more
As well as giving a solid scientific understanding, the course also addresses commercial, ethical, legal and regulatory requirements, aided by extensive industrial contacts.

Students who successfully complete the course will have acquired skills that are essential to the modern biomedical and healthcare industry, together with the expertise required to enter into management, product innovation, development and research.

Programme Structure

The MSc programmes in Biomedical Engineering are full-time, one academic year (12 consecutive months). The programmes consist of 4 core (compulsory) taught modules and two optional streams. Biomedical, Genetics and Tissue Engineering stream has 3 modules, all compulsory (see below). The second option, Biomedical, Biomechanics and Bioelectronics Engineering stream consists of 5 modules. Students choosing this option will be required to choose 60 credit worth of modules. See individual course pages.

The taught modules are delivered to students over two terms; Term 1 (September – December) and Term 2 (January – April) of each academic year. The taught modules are examined at the end of each term, and the students begin working on their dissertations on a part-time basis in term 2, then full-time during the months of May to September.

Core Modules
Biomechanics and Biomaterials (15 credit)
Design and Manufacture (15 credit)
Biomedical Engineering Principles (15 credit)
Innovation, Management and Research Methods (15 credit)

Additional Compulsory Programme Modules
Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine (15 credit)
Genomic Technologies (15 credit)
Molecular Mechanisms of Human Disease (30 credit)
Dissertation (60 credit)

Module Descriptions

Biomechanics and Biomaterials

Main topics include: review of biomechanical principles; introduction to biomedical materials; stability of biomedical materials; biocompatibility; materials for adhesion and joining; applications of biomedical materials; implant design.

Biomedical Engineering Principles

Main topics include: bone structure and composition; the mechanical properties of bone, cartilage and tendon; the cardiovascular function and the cardiac cycle; body fluids and organs; organisation of the nervous system; sensory systems; biomechanical principles; biomedical materials; biofluid mechanics principles, the cardiovascular system, blood structure and composition, modelling of biofluid systems.

Design and Manufacture

Main topics include: design and materials optimisation; management and manufacturing strategies; improving clinical medical and industrial interaction; meeting product liability, ethical, legal and commercial needs.

Genomic Technologies

Main topics: General knowledge of genomic and proteomic technology; Microarrary technology; Transgenic technology. Drug discovery technology; Translational experiment-design and interpretation; Sequencing in microbiology research

Innovation and Management and Research Methods

Main topics include: company structure and organisation will be considered (with particular reference to the United Kingdom), together with the interfacing between hospital, clinical and healthcare sectors; review of existing practice: examination of existing equipment and devices; consideration of current procedures for integrating engineering expertise into the biomedical environment. Discussion of management techniques; design of biomedical equipment: statistical Procedures and Data Handling; matching of equipment to biomedical systems; quality assurance requirements in clinical technology; patient safety requirements and protection; sterilisation procedures and infection control; failure criteria and fail-safe design; maintainability and whole life provision; public and environmental considerations: environmental and hygenic topics in the provision of hospital services; legal and ethical requirements; product development: innovation in the company environment, innovation in the clinical environment; cash flow and capital provision; testing and validation; product development criteria and strategies.

Molecular Mechanisms of Human Disease

Main topics: The module will focus on the following subject material with emphasis on how these processes are altered in a variety of human diseases. Where appropriate, therapeutic intervention in these processes will be highlighted. Signalling pathways resulting from activation of membrane, intracellular or nuclear receptors will be discussed. Examples include: Mammalian iron, copper and zinc metabolism, G-Protein coupled receptor signalling, Wnt signalling, JAK/STAT signalling and cytokine signalling, Steroid signalling

Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine

Main topics: Fundamentals of tissue structure, function and pathology. Tissue regeneration. Tissue engineering substitutes. Cells, cell culture, stem cells, cell and gene therapy. Extracellular matrix, structure, scaffolds. Cell signalling, growth factors, cytokines, neurotransmitters, receptors and other signalling molecules. Bioreactors, ex-vivo and in-vivo. Engineering host tissue responses.

Dissertation

The choice of Dissertation topic will be made by the student in consultation with academic staff and (where applicable) with the sponsoring company. The topic agreed is also subject to approval by the Module Co-ordinator. The primary requirement for the topic is that it must have sufficient scope to allow the student to demonstrate his or her ability to conduct a well-founded programme of investigation and research. It is not only the outcome that is important since the topic chosen must be such that the whole process of investigation can be clearly demonstrated throughout the project. In industrially sponsored projects the potential differences between industrial and academic expectations must be clearly understood.

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