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Vertebrates are highly sensitive to both retinoic acid (RA) deficiency and excess. The RA signal is thought to be transduced by nuclear receptors (the RAR and RXR families) which activate the expression of target genes via cis-acting transcriptional enhancer elements. Each of the three RAR genes, RAR alpha, RAR beta, and RAR gamma, gives rise to several isoforms by differential usage of two promoters and alternative splicing. RAR beta 2 is the most abundant of the four RAR beta isoforms, and its transcription is spatially and temporally restricted in developing embryos, suggesting that it might perform specific functions. Furthermore, RAR beta 2 expression can be induced via a retinoic acid response element located in its promoter region. This RA effect is particularly interesting since under conditions of RA excess, RAR beta 2 promoter activity and transcript accumulation are induced in regions of developing embryos in which malformations subsequently appear, such as the craniofacial region, the hindbrain, and the limbs. These findings have led to the suggestion that the RAR beta 2 isoform might mediate some of the teratogenic effects of RA. In this study, we have eliminated RAR beta 2 expression by targeted gene disruption. RAR beta 2 null mutants exhibit an apparently normal phenotype, indicating that other RARs must compensate for RAR beta 2 sufficiently well to allow normal prenatal and postnatal development to proceed. By challenging RAR beta 2 null embryos with teratogenic doses of RA, we have also directly addressed the question of whether RAR beta 2 is required for mediating RA-induced malformations.
The 2nd Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment (2 RAR) is an amphibious light infantry battalion of the Australian Army part of the 1st Division Amphibious Task Group based at Lavarack Barracks in Townsville.
2 RAR was initially formed as the Australian 66th Battalion in 1945 as part of the 34th Brigade (Australia) and since then it has seen active service during the Korean War, Malayan Emergency and Vietnam War. In addition, the battalion has participated in peacekeeping operations in Japan, Rwanda, East Timor and the Solomon Islands and has contributed rifle companies to the security force protecting the Australian embassy in Baghdad following the 2003 invasion of Iraq. In May 2006, 2 RAR's headquarters, support company and a rifle company deployed to Iraq as part of the third rotation of the Al Muthanna Task Group. In June 2011, the battalion deployed to Urozgan Province, Afghanistan as Mentoring Task Force Three (MTF3). In 2011, 2 RAR was selected to be the Army's Amphibious Ready Element Landing Force embarked on the Navy's new Canberra-class amphibious assault ships. The conversion process was completed in October 2017.
2 RAR was formed originally as the 66th Battalion at the end of World War II on 16 October 1945 as a regular infantry force raised from volunteers from the 9th Division for service with the British Commonwealth Occupation Force in Japan. The battalion was stationed primarily at Hiro as part of the 34th Brigade from February 1946 to December 1948, when they returned to Australia. A month earlier, on 23 November 1948 it was renamed the 2nd Battalion, Australian Regiment, with the Royal regimental prefix being granted on 31 March 1949.
Upon 2 RAR's return to Australia they became part of the 1st Independent Brigade Group at Puckapunyal, Victoria, where they would remain until March 1953 as a training unit for recruits for the two battalions fighting in Korea.
2 RAR's involvement in the Korean War was limited by the fact that it was not committed until late in the fighting. Instead, as mentioned above, the unit was used as a training unit that provided reinforcements for the other two RAR battalions that had been sent to Korea. The unit embarked for Korea on 5 March 1953 on board the MV New Australia, arriving on 17 March 1953. A few days later detachments from all three RAR battalions paraded at Camp Casey near Tongduchon, South Korea, the first time that the Royal Australian Regiment had paraded as a whole.
In April, 2 RAR relieved 1 RAR and became part of the 28th British Commonwealth Brigade, attached to the 1st Commonwealth Division. At this stage of the war, a static phase had developed. Relieving a French battalion, 2 RAR took up a position along the Jamestown Line and began patrolling in the 'no-man's land' area around the Imjin and Samichon Rivers.
On 9 July 1953 the battalion relieved the 1st Battalion, The King's Regiment around a feature known as 'The Hook' on the left flank of the 1st Commonwealth Division. As peace talks were currently under way, offensive operations were not undertaken by the Australians in this time, although 2 RAR continued to conduct patrolling operations, as well as the myriad of other tasks associated with defence such as maintaining minefields, digging trenches, capturing prisoners and collecting intelligence.
A few weeks later, on the night of 24 July 1953, the Chinese attacked the UN positions on The Hook in an effort to gain more ground prior to the signing of the armistice agreement. Over the course of two nights, waves of Chinese soldiers attacked the Australian and American positions in frontal assaults aimed at overwhelming the defenders through sheer weight of numbers. In between attacks, artillery and mortar attacks were launched during the day to soften up the defences. In an effort to hold the line reinforcements from 'D' Company, 3 RAR and the 1st Battalion, Durham Light Infantry were brought up and placed under 2 RAR command before the attacks were finally beaten off on the morning of 26 July. The number of Chinese dead was estimated between 2,000 and 3,000, while 2 RAR's casualties for the two nights were five killed and another twenty-four wounded.
There were no further attacks and the armistice came into effect the following day. Despite the end of hostilities, 2 RAR remained in Korea as part of the UN forces stationed in the country until 6 April 1954, when it returned to Australia, once again on the MV New Australia. Total losses for 2 RAR while it had been in Korea had been 22 killed.
In the late 1950s and early 1960s, 2 RAR undertook two tours of Malaya during the Malayan Emergency, the first between October 1955 and October 1957 and the second between October 1961 and August 1963. The battalion arrived in Malaya for its first tour on 19 October 1955 and was once again attached to the 28th Commonwealth Infantry Brigade Group as part of the British Commonwealth Far East Strategic Reserve (FESR) along with British and New Zealand troops. Throughout the two-year tour the battalion was based at Minden Barracks on Penang Island, although it spent large periods of time in the jungle conducting operations and exercises that frequently lasted weeks at a time.
During this time contacts were very limited, and the most intense action came on 22 June 1956 when a five-man patrol from 2 RAR was ambushed by a group of Communists near the Sungei Bemben reservoir. Three Australians were killed in this incident and three others were wounded and as other Australian patrols converged on the area a firefight ensued in which two of the attackers were killed before the others broke contact and dispersed.
Throughout 1956 operations continued and 2 RAR's companies took turns rotating through Kroh in the north of Perak on the Thai-Malay border. Between May and June 1957, 2 RAR took part in Operation Eagle Swoop, during which, on the afternoon of 24 June, they discovered a large Communist camp and in the subsequent clash two Australians were killed and one was wounded. Further operations were undertaken, including further patrols and ambushes, until finally in August 1957 2 RAR was withdrawn from anti-Communist operations and returned to its primary deterrence role as part of the FESR. This did not last long, however, as the battalion returned to Australia shortly afterwards in October 1957, to a large welcome home parade in Sydney.
The battalion's second tour of Malaya came four years later when it joined the 28th Brigade again, this time at Camp Terendak near Malacca in October 1961. While they had been in Australia, they had been converted to a Pentropic battalion, however, prior to their deployment they had been converted back to the tropical establishment. In August 1962 they were committed to anti-Communist operations in Perlis and Kedah once more, searching for the remnants of the MNLA Communist guerrillas along the Thai-Malay border. This lasted only a couple of months before it was decided to withdraw the battalion from this role for six months' training as part of the FESR. Regardless, several 2 RAR companies were used on further operations against the Communists in May 1963, before the battalion returned to Australia in August, without having suffered any losses. 2 RAR's total losses for the Malayan Emergency were 14 killed.
Two tours of South Vietnam were completed by 2 RAR during the Vietnam War. The first tour was between May 1967 and June 1968 with the second between May 1970 to May 1971. An advanced party from 2 RAR arrived in South Vietnam for their first tour in April 1967, although the main force did not deploy until the following month, embarking upon HMAS Sydney which had been converted to a troop carrier. Stationed at Nui Dat in Phuoc Tuy Province as part of the 1st Australian Task Force (1 ATF), they took over from the 6th Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment.
Many of the battalion's members had recently served an eighteen month period overseas in Malaysia and Borneo. This restriction would mean that many personnel would only be able to serve a six-month tour and, as such, 2 RAR was brought up to full strength by accepting a draft of national servicemen from Australia. They were joined by Victor Company from the 1st Battalion, Royal New Zealand Infantry Regiment which had served with 6RAR at the end of that battalion's tour. A replacement Victor Company and a second New Zealand company, Whisky Company, arrived in December 1967 and were also placed under 2 RAR's command. In March 1968 the three Australian and two New Zealand companies were officially integrated and the battalion was given the formal title of 2 RAR/NZ (ANZAC). This was the first official integration of Australian and New Zealand infantry at unit or battalion level. 041b061a72