March Forth!
Age of Autism Weekly Wrap: H.P. Lovecraft and the Lurking Poison of Evil

The CDC Atlanta Autism Study That No One Noticed

CdclogoBy F. Edward Yazbak MD

Amid all the furor surrounding Thompson no one noticed the publication by the CDC last year of a study showing the steady rise of autism spectrum disorders in Atlanta which once again places beyond reasonable doubt that the rise in autism is real and not an artifact. On the CDC’s own analysis autism had risen on its own door step by nearly four times among eight year olds between 1996 and 2010 to a rate of 1 in 65. Ed Yazbak reviews the paper.

By now everyone who cared to know has been or should have become well informed about a controversial 2004 CDC publication by DeStefano, Bhasin, Thompson, Yeargin-Allsopp and Boyle titled "Age at first measles-mumps-rubella vaccination in children with autism and school-matched control subjects: a population-based study in metropolitan Atlanta." [i] 

Facts and allegations related to that study are not the subject of this report. Only deserving a mention is the fact that one of the authors of the 2004 study is still the Director of the National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities (NCBDDD) [ii] and another is the Branch Chief, Developmental Disabilities Branch, NCBDDD[iii]. Neither has yet proposed a science-supported cause or causes of autism and both seem only certain that pediatric vaccines and their components are in no way responsible for autistic regression.

On April 29, 2015, another Atlanta Autism-related study titled Trends in the Prevalence of Autism Spectrum Disorder, Cerebral Palsy, Hearing Loss, Intellectual Disability, and Vision Impairment, Metropolitan Atlanta, 1991–2010” was published on PLOS One, an Open Access Journal.[iv] For reasons unknown, it was not extensively publicized and did not receive much attention.

The authors, Braun KVN, Christensen D, Doernberg N, Schieve L, Rice C, Wiggins L, Schendel D, and Yeargin-Allsopp M reported that they were all from of the “Developmental Disabilities Branch, National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia, United States of America.” Of the group, only Dr. Yeargin-Allsopp had participated in the 2004 investigational study and co-authored its published report.

The authors’ participation in the latest study and publication was as follows: KVB, DC, ND and MYA “conceived and designed the experiments”,   KVB and DC “analyzed the data” and KVB, DC, ND, LS, CR, LW, DS and MYA “wrote the paper.”

It is not clear why it was decided to claim that Dianna Schendel PhD was still at the CDC in April 2015 when the PLOS study was published, when Arrhus University in Denmark had announced that she had been a University employee since 2013 and had “been appointed Professor with special responsibilities at the Department of Public Health and the National Centre for Register-based Research at Aarhus University” on 6/26/2014. [v]

In her recent Arrhus University CV, Dr. Schendel herself clearly stated that she had been employed at the “Developmental Disabilities Branch, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention” from 1993 to 2013.[vi]

The exchange of talent between the CDC and Arrhus University is well known and long standing. It was highlighted of course by the “Affaire Thorsen” that the CDC hierarchy has preferred to forget. Less inhibited and clearly more disturbed, Arrhus University issued a detailed recitation of what exactly happened in its very frank Statement regarding Dr. Poul Thorsen’s involvement in Aarhus University projects”. [vii]

According to the Office of Inspector General, HHS, Dr. Thorsen remains a wanted fugitive who allegedly diverted over $1 million of CDC grant money to his own personal bank account, who was indicted in April 2011 on 22 counts of Wire Fraud and Money Laundering, and who is presently in Denmark supposedly awaiting extradition to the United States.[viii]

Meanwhile Dr. Thorsen seems happily employed in addition to writing and publishing scientific papers, the latest in September 2015. [ix]

*****

The most recent Atlanta Study by Braun et al, the subject of this report, “examined the prevalence and characteristics of autism spectrum disorder (ASD), cerebral palsy (CP), hearing loss (HL), intellectual disability (ID), and vision impairment (VI) over a 15–20 year time period, with specific focus on concurrent changes in ASD and ID prevalence.”

                              

The authors using “data from a population-based developmental disabilities surveillance program for 8-year-olds in metropolitan Atlanta” found that “From 1991–2010, prevalence estimates of ID and HL were stable with slight increases in VI prevalence. CP prevalence was constant from 1993–2010. The average annual increase in ASD prevalence was 9.3% per year from 1996–2010, with a 269% increase from 4.2 per 1,000 in 1996 to 15.5 per 1,000 in 2010. From 2000–2010, the prevalence of ID without ASD was stable; during the same time, the prevalence of ASD with and without co-occurring ID increased by an average of 6.6% and 9.6% per year, respectively.” They also stated that: “ASD prevalence increases were found among both males and females, and among nearly all racial/ethnic subgroups and levels of intellectual ability” and that “Average annual prevalence estimates from 1991–2010 underscore the significant community resources needed to provide early intervention and ongoing supports for children with ID (13.0 per 1,000), CP, (3.5 per 1,000), HL (1.4 per 1,000) and VI (1.3 in 1,000), with a growing urgency for children with ASD”

Under “Results”, the authors reported that the population of 8-year-old children in Metropolitan Atlanta had grown approximately 61% from 1991 through 2010 and that there had been a 934% increase among Hispanic children, an 82% increase among Non-Hispanic Black children and a -6% decrease among Non-Hispanic White children.

The authors also stated that prevalence estimates for Intellectual Disability, Cerebral Palsy, Hearing Loss and Vision Impairment were relatively stable from 1991 through 2010 whereas the prevalence of Autism Spectrum Disorders markedly increased from 1996 through 2010. These findings were more graphically evident in Figure I of the Publication:

Y Graph

 

 

Even though the above clearly and graphically demonstrated that the persistent increase in Autism/ASD cases over 14 years was genuine and not due to “diagnostic substitution”, the authors nevertheless went on examining every aspect of that important issue in great detail. It is therefore only fair to recommend to all readers to review the whole report in order to draw their   own conclusions.

For the sake of brevity, I will only discuss the study findings related to Intellectual Disability (ID) and Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD), the two entities usually named in alleged “Substitution”

Intellectual Disability

  • The prevalence of Intellectual Disability was overall stable during the study period (from 10.6 per 1,000 in 1991 to 13.6 per 1,000 in 2010).
  • Across the entire period from 1991–2010, average Intellectual Disability prevalence was 13.0 per 1,000 or 1 in 77.
  • Prevalence of Intellectual Disability “was consistently and significantly higher among males than femalesand among Non- Hispanic Blacks than Non-Hispanic White children (PR, 1.7:1 to 2.6:1).”
  • Intellectual Disability prevalence among Hispanic children “increased from 9.4 per 1,000 in 1991–1992 to 11.7 per 1,000 in 2010, with a significant average annual increase of 2.0% (95% CI 0.2, 3.9).”
  • Among children with Intellectual Disability, 28% had co-occurring ASD.

 

Autism Spectrum Disorders

 

  • ASD prevalence increased significantly from 4.2 per 1,000 in 1996 to 15.5 per 1,000 in 2010, “an average annual change of 9.3% and an absolute change of 269%”
  • Prevalence was significantly higher among males than among females
  • By 2010, approximately 1 in 40 males had ASD compared with 1 in 182 females (an overall figure of 1 in 65).
  • Prevalence of ASD was higher among NHW than NHB and Hispanic children for all years. The highest ASD prevalence estimate for any subgroup was among NHW males in 2010 (1 in 33).

Because of their complexity, the following two paragraphs are simply copied to avoid confusion.

  1. “Significant increases in ASD prevalence were found at all levels of intellectual ability with the exception of ID-NOS for which the sample sizes were small. The average annual increases among children with ASD with average to above average or borderline intellectual ability as well as that for children with ASD and mild ID were approximately 9.9–11.2% per year. The increase for children with ASD and moderate to profound ID was smaller (3.1%)”
  2. ASD prevalence, both with and without ID, increased significantly for both time periods with average annual increases from 2000 to 2010 of 6.6% for ASD with ID and 9.6% for ASD without ID (Fig 2). ID prevalence without co-occurring ASD decreased significantly from 13.0 per 1,000 in 1996 to 8.6 per 1,000 in 2010, yet was stable when restricted to 2000 through 2010 (9.5 per 1,000 to 8.6 per 1,000) (Fig 2). The stability in prevalence of ID without ASD from 2000–2010 is consistent with the stable prevalence of ID overall from 1991–2010. The 2010 surveillance year was the first time the overall ASD prevalence surpassed the overall ID prevalence (15.5 and 13.6 per 1,000, respectively), and ASD prevalence without ID was equal to that of ID without ASD (8.6 and 8.6 per 1,000, respectively).

*****

Based on the above and on other information in the 2015 Atlanta GA Autism Study titled Trends in the Prevalence of Autism Spectrum Disorder, Cerebral Palsy, Hearing Loss, Intellectual Disability, and Vision Impairment, Metropolitan Atlanta, 1991–2010”, it is clear that the authors, all reportedly members of the “Developmental Disabilities Branch, National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia, United States of America” believe that Autism and ASD increases are true increases and not due to “diagnostic substitution”.

In addition, as clearly outlined under “Materials and Methods- Case Ascertainment” the same CDC authors left no doubt about the seriousness of their methodology and the accuracy of their findings. The 269% increase in Autism/ASD during the study period that they investigated was therefore a TRUE increase and certainly not due to “changing criteria”.

For those of us who have tried to say just that that since 1999, this is a welcome endorsement.

All we need now is that:

  1. No one ever again dare say that the clear increase in autism rates is just an artifact
  2. All concerned start to honestly investigate all suspected causes of autistic disorders without exception.          

-------------------------------

References:

[i] http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/14754936

[ii] http://www.cdc.gov/about/leadership/new-leaders/ncbddd.html

[iii] http://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/AboutUs/documents/216624-A%20NCBDDD%20DirRecruitCov.pdf

[iv] http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4414511/

[v] http://health.au.dk/en/currently/news/news/artikel/aarhus-universitet-faar-ny-autisme-forsker/

[vi] http://pure.au.dk/portal/en/persons/diana-schendel(2163da2c-859c-46e1-b464-d1c36b753696)/cv.html?id=75088389

[vii] http://www.rescuepost.com/files/thorsen-aarhus.pdf

[viii] http://oig.hhs.gov/fraud/fugitives/profiles.asp

[ix] http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26382068

As per the reviewed article:

Copyright notice

This is an open access article, free of all copyright, and may be freely reproduced, distributed, transmitted, modified, built upon, or otherwise used by anyone for any lawful purpose. The work is made available under the Creative Commons CC0 public domain dedication

Comments

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Ray Gallup

Might I also add that the CDC and THEIR PARTNERS IN CRIME IN THE MEDICAL COMMUNITY are CORRUPT and EVIL not only for what they have done to Dr. Andy Wakefield but to the hundreds of thousands of children/adults with autism and their families.

In the end, God will be the Judge for their Criminal behavior!!!!!

Ray Gallup

Thank you, Dr. Yazbak, for another EXCELLENT ARTICLE.

Two points that really stand out to me are:

"Facts and allegations related to that study are not the subject of this report. Only deserving a mention is the fact that one of the authors of the 2004 study is still the Director of the National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities (NCBDDD) [ii] and another is the Branch Chief, Developmental Disabilities Branch, NCBDDD[iii]. Neither has yet proposed a science-supported cause or causes of autism and both seem only certain that pediatric vaccines and their components are in no way responsible for autistic regression."

and..............

"The exchange of talent between the CDC and Arrhus University is well known and long standing. It was highlighted of course by the “Affaire Thorsen” that the CDC hierarchy has preferred to forget. Less inhibited and clearly more disturbed, Arrhus University issued a detailed recitation of what exactly happened in its very frank “Statement regarding Dr. Poul Thorsen’s involvement in Aarhus University projects”. [vii]

According to the Office of Inspector General, HHS, Dr. Thorsen remains a wanted fugitive who allegedly diverted over $1 million of CDC grant money to his own personal bank account, who was indicted in April 2011 on 22 counts of Wire Fraud and Money Laundering, and who is presently in Denmark supposedly awaiting extradition to the United States.[viii]

Meanwhile Dr. Thorsen seems happily employed in addition to writing and publishing scientific papers, the latest in September 2015. [ix]"

Meanwhile, Dr. Andy Wakefield who provides science is unjustly punished by the medical community/CDC just because his SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH brought up uncomfortable information and facts that the medical community/CDC at large were not "comfortable" with. Where is the science by the CDC/medical community disproving the link between autoimmunity and autism? Where are their immune panel blood tests and gastro studies disproving the science provided by Andrew Wakefield, Vijendra Singh and others??? THE MEDICAL COMMUNITY/CDC PROVIDES NO SCIENCE OR RESEARCH TO PROVE THEIR POINT, PERIOD!!!!!!!!! Instead they have hire a so-called "Researcher" who is in fact a CRIMINAL by the name of Poul Thorsen breaking Federal laws that any American citizen would be in Federal prison doing the same. It is OUTRAGEOUS and SHAMEFUL!!!!!

As one of the great Founding Fathers of the USA, John Adams, said:

"Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passions, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence."

THE MEDICAL COMMUNITY/CDC LACK FACTS AND SCIENCE!!!!

Cherry Misra

I ran my nursery school in New Delhi for 22 years before I saw a case of autism, but I would like to point out something which I think went unexplained- We did see, in about 1 in 200 boys a mild cognitive impairment. We called it mental retardation in those days. Those children were invariably boys and they are easily remembered because they always drooled and often had an endlessly running nose. It should be noted that drooling is a symptom of mercury toxicity and a running nose is a symptom of a poor immune system- which may also be caused by mercury. My explanation is that we were always damaging boys brains and bodies with mercury , but in todays world, the quantity of mercury is so much that we get autism instead. (In India, the mercury came, in those days through three DTP injections and in some cases through tetanus toxoids which are frequently given to little boys for injuries) Just think about it- Why should a cognitive impairment always be associated with drooling? That makes not sense , except with the mercury hypothesis.

California Bob

In reference to skeptics and Specific Learning Disability - perhaps they should apply the definition not what they think it is.

"56337. (a) A specific learning disability, as defined in Section1401(30) of Title 20 of the United States Code, means a disorder in one or more of the basic psychological processes involved in understanding or in using language, spoken or written, which may manifest itself in the imperfect ability to listen, think, speak,read, write, spell, or perform mathematical calculations. The term "specific learning disability" includes conditions such as perceptual
disabilities, brain injury, minimal brain dysfunction, dyslexia, and developmental aphasia.

That term does not include a learning problem that is primarily the result of visual, hearing, or motor disabilities, of intellectual disabilities, of emotional disturbance,or of environmental, cultural, or economic disadvantage." '

Ed Yazbak

Thank you Jennifer, Keith and Linda for your kind words

Ed Yazbak

Thank you Benedetta for your kind words.

Stay tuned

John Stone

Benedetta

Without answering for Ed I think it is testimony to how well the study was buried that neither he, or anyone else, turned it up in nearly a year. That is the information game that government agencies play.

Benedetta

Ed; How did you come upon this?
How did you know what to look for?

Great find! And good work!

Tell us that it is better diagnosis

Linda1

Dr. Yazbak,
Thank you for this excellent revealing analysis and reporting. The hardest part about lying is keeping the story straight.

Keith Roberts

Dear Dr Yasbak,
Thank you for this important fact based article.Keep up the good work.
Keith Roberts and Jennifer Horne-Roberts.

Ed Yazbak

British Autism Mother

Thank you for your note

Should you need references RE the California DDS 273% increase in autism cases in 10 years, please see:
http://www.whale.to/vaccine/yazbak5.html
Autism 99: A National Emergency

John Stone

Ed

I think they should be held to the statement:

"Furthermore, the consistent application of methods and case definitions across all surveillance years provides strong internal validity to evaluate trends."

This surely over-rides the historical discussions which they rehearse before stating this.

Incidentally, I remember chatting with a health professional in the late 1990s pre-Wakefield controversy about the burgeoning autism work load, and she smiled at me and said ambiguously "Are we doing anything different?"

Ed Yazbak

N Davis

Thank you for your note.

I sincerely hope that one of the authors contacts us and comments.

Please allow me to also refer you to the table at https://nces.ed.gov/fastfacts/display.asp?id=64

Please note the significant and dramatic increase in ASD cases from 93,000 in 2000-2001 to 417,000 in 2010-2011

Please also note the number of Specific Learning Disability cases during the same period.

I would love to see any official corresponding California figures.

Ed Yazbak

J. Bishop,

Should you need a National Picture for your research: Please see
https://nces.ed.gov/fastfacts/display.asp?id=64

Children 3 to 21 years old served under Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, Part B, by type of disability: Selected years, 1976–77 through 2011–12

Ed Yazbak

Dr. Kostoff, If you click on Author Information, you will notice that the Academic Editor was from the University of Tuebingen Medical School, Germany and ALL THE AUTHORS were reportedly from the CDC at the time the paper was finally transmitted for publication.
If you look at http://pure.au.dk/portal/en/persons/diana-schendel(2163da2c-859c-46e1-b464-d1c36b753696)/cv.html?id=75088389, you will see that Dr. Schendel had been already at Arrhus at the end of 2014

John Stone

N Davis

Well, you can read for yourself and no doubt have - they raise the arguments but they don't form any conclusions. If things were muddled in this way they would have great culpability. Actually, elsewhere under "Strengths" they state:

"Furthermore, the consistent application of methods and case definitions across all surveillance years provides strong internal validity to evaluate trends."

So, they ought to make up their mind. And they note in conclusion:

"The complexity of evaluating and supporting children with ASD and their families coupled with persistent growth in prevalence highlights the significant resource challenges faced by communities."

There are, of course, issues here of how you influence public opinion. Another study on PLOS makes little impact unless there are major press releases associated: the information is just buried under the heap (also why not go for a so-called "high-impact" journal - after all this is the CDC). We recall the British politician who circulated his staff on the day the Princess of Wales was killed saying it was a good day to bury bad news. We keep on being told what is important and what isn't by the machine. We are even told that finding more cases is good news (light it up blue for Bernie Marcus!). But frankly it would have been more impressive if they had never had to explain away the autism problem in the first place.

An obvious place I wouldn't quite trust this paper (Ronald) particularly since it was submitted in the immediate wake of the Thompson affair is over African Americans. Nevertheless it is testimony to the fact that even they may not be able to sweep everything under the rug all the time.

British Autism Mother

I always used to recommend the State of California Department of Developmental Services' website as being a good source of information. IIRC one ten-year study* (1997-2006?) reported a 273% increase in the numbers diagnosed; NB they specifically excluded children under 3 years of age and diagnoses of Asperger's Syndrome from their statistics. What do their latest statistics show?

*Apologies - my hardcopy didn't survive a house move.

Another crime against nature

Didn't some disabilities go down due to selective abortion? What would the rate of that be? If so this would mean that the autism rate is even higher than it seems because tragically those babies were taken entirely out of the question.In other words, suppose the normal rate of downs and similar detectable disorders was 1 in 100 and people selectively aborted 4 out of 5 downs pregnancies. So rather than "substitution" happening the actual rate of that disability would now be 1 in 500. This is just one example. While autism would not be mistaken for most downs it would be mistaken for other intellecital disabiloties that have been eugenicized away. So once again they are saying the opposite of what is true. The autism rate has accelerated even faster than they are saying.

kapoore

Thank you Dr. Yazbak for saying we can not give up the fight. Where are other doctors. What about do no harm. Please keep up the research. Please keep up the pressure. I am heartsick at what is happening to our children.

Barry

I doubt that the authors would agree with your assessment, Doctor Yazbak. I think that they would argue that their study, like previous work, showed that intellectual impairment did not decline as ASD increased; the claim is that some of the increase in ASD is due to the diagnosis of ASD in children who previously would have been diagnosed as only intellectually impaired. Similarly, they'd probably argue that factors other than the few that they studied could affect the rise in ASD: for example, in California ASD rose as diagnosis of specific learning disability (something they did not study) declined. That's probably why this work didn't attract much attention here or elsewhere: it doesn't really show anything that we didn't already know.

********

What do you think they'd say about the late Dr. Mayer Eisenstein's statement:

"…. 40 years ago when I started my practice only 1 in 10,000 children had autism. Today it's 1 in 100. What is the only difference we have seen? The inordinate number of vaccines that are being given to children today. My partners and I have over 35,000 patients who have never been vaccinated. You know how many cases of autism we have seen? ZERO, ZERO. I have made this statement for over 40 years: "NO VACCINES NO AUTISM"…."

Then again, never mind. I already know what they'd say.

They'd say nothing. Because they would all much prefer that no-one ever speak about that.

N Davis

I doubt that the authors would agree with your assessment, Doctor Yazbak. I think that they would argue that their study, like previous work, showed that intellectual impairment did not decline as ASD increased; the claim is that some of the increase in ASD is due to the diagnosis of ASD in children who previously would have been diagnosed as only intellectually impaired. Similarly, they'd probably argue that factors other than the few that they studied could affect the rise in ASD: for example, in California ASD rose as diagnosis of specific learning disability (something they did not study) declined. That's probably why this work didn't attract much attention here or elsewhere: it doesn't really show anything that we didn't already know.

Ray Gallup

Excellent and Outstanding Article, Fouad.

God Bless you for doing this. It says it all!!!!!

Ray

Jeannette Bishop

Thank you, Dr. Yazbak. I'm thinking I'll be encountering the need to reference this post several times in the future couple of months.

Assuming (probably incorrectly) an autism rate of 4.2 for 8-yr-olds in 1991 this chart suggests a prevalence of all these disabilities overall as 20 per 1000. If one estimates an autism rate of about 1 in 500 in 8-yr-olds in 1991 that would only be 16 per 1000. Then, for 8-yr-olds in 2008, it looks like a prevalence of all charted disabilities of 35.6 per 1000.

I can't think of any compensating areas of health progress either (in my limited experience)...I can't really formulate a coherent point, other than what seems to be in the above numbers.

Ronald Kostoff

Dr. Yazbak,

I skimmed the paper in Plos One. Not clear that she's being listed as a present employee of CDC. I realize many journals will give an author's present organizational status in addition to the person's status when the article was actually written, but this is not universal.

It appears they take the data every two years. I would guess that 2012 data would be available by mid-2013, but they don't confirm that. Given that the article was submitted December 2014, they would have had about a year and a half for the analysis and writing based on 2012 data. But, maybe the time available to incorporate the 2012 data was insufficient.

More importantly, why do you believe the data presented? One of the authors participated in the 2004 Pediatrics paper, and I doubt you accept the credibility of the data in that paper and the analyses. Why, then, would you have faith that the recent paper is any more credible? Who knows what objectives the CDC has in mind for showing increases or decreases in the prevalence of any disease?

Ed Yazbak

Thank you Louis, James and John for your very kind words.

We cannot "Give Up The Fight"

John Stone

Thank you Ed

This really shows up the mountebanks going round the media telling everyone the rise in autism is illusory. It is interesting that CDC published it but also failed to give it any publicity: it has been hanging round for a year during which time the likes of Steve Silberman, John Donvon and Caren Zucker have been regaling other journalists with their remarkable, unoriginal and entirely fraudulent insights. And here it is: the rate in eight year olds 20 years 4.2 in 1000, 1 in 238. The rate in eight year olds six years ago 15.5 in 1000, 1 in 64.5. Nothing to see here folks, move along please...

As you know I have been commenting on the parallel situation in the UK. I have shown that they stopped collecting data for children when the rate reached 1 in 100 because the knew it was going to go even higher, then they botched together a 1 in 100 figure for adults who could not be found knowing the rate in adolescents born between 1983 and 1988 was only 1 in 500.

This is ample evidence that there is no hidden horde and never was.

http://www.ageofautism.com/2016/02/the-true-data-revealed-adult-autism-data-fabrication-in-the-united-kingdom-part-3.html

James Grundvig

So now this is interesting, especially with names like Schendel and Y-Allsopp tied to the study. Seems kind of one sided by the CDC not to find the root cause of a building fire, but only to proclaim the lack of firestopping and fireproofing had nothing to do with the fire spread. This is interesting to follow up this article.

Louis Conte

Dr. Yazbak:

Exactly right!

Well said.

Louis

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