July 2016 Briefing - Neurology

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Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Neurology for July 2016. This roundup includes the latest research news from journal articles, as well as the FDA approvals and regulatory changes that are the most likely to affect clinical practice.

Conception During Low Mosquito Activity May Lower Zika Odds

FRIDAY, July 29, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Women in Zika-affected countries might reduce their risk of infection during pregnancy by timing conception with periods of low mosquito activity, according to a perspective piece published July 28 in PLOS Biology.

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Usual Apixaban Dosing OK With One Dose-Reduction Criterion

FRIDAY, July 29, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- For patients in the Apixaban for Reduction of Stroke and Other Thromboembolic Complications in Atrial Fibrillation (ARISTOTLE) trial, the 5 mg twice daily dose of apixaban is beneficial and appropriate for those with one dose-reduction criterion, according to a study published online July 27 in JAMA Cardiology.

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Deep Brain Stimulation Appears Safe in Patients With Alzheimer's

THURSDAY, July 28, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Deep brain stimulation (DBS) appears safe for patients with early Alzheimer's disease (AD) -- and might even slow down memory loss in some, according to a preliminary study published online July 18 in the Journal of Alzheimer's Disease.

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Two More Possible Cases of Non-Travel-Related Zika in Florida

THURSDAY, July 28, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Florida health officials are investigating two more unexplained cases of Zika infection, bringing to four the number of cases that don't seem to be related to travel to countries where the virus is circulating.

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Miscarriage Linked to Maternal Zika Infection

THURSDAY, July 28, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Dutch researchers are reporting a case of miscarriage tied to maternal infection with the Zika virus. The report was published online July 27 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Marijuana May Cause More Damage to Heart Than Tobacco

THURSDAY, July 28, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- In an experimental study published online July 27 in the Journal of the American Heart Association, lab rats experienced substantially impaired endothelial function after a minute's exposure to secondhand smoke (SHS) from marijuana.

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'Ice Bucket Challenge' Led to Significant ALS Gene Discovery

WEDNESDAY, July 27, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- The hugely popular "Ice Bucket Challenge" funded a study that has discovered an important new amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) gene. The study, which involved more than 80 researchers in 11 countries, was published online July 25 in Nature Genetics.

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New Rule Tied to Fewer Head Impacts in High School Football

WEDNESDAY, July 27, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Limiting tackling during high school football practices lowers the risk of head impacts, according to a study published online June 22 in the Journal of Athletic Training.

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Less Cognitive Deterioration With Stereotactic Radiosurgery Alone

WEDNESDAY, July 27, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- For some metastatic brain cancer patients, stereotactic radiosurgery (SRS) alone appears to do less damage to cognitive function than SRS combined with whole brain radiotherapy (WBRT), according to a study published in the July 26 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Review: Biofeedback Seems Effective for Pediatric Migraine

WEDNESDAY, July 27, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- For pediatric patients with migraine, biofeedback seems to be an effective intervention, according to a review published online July 26 in Pediatrics.

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Primary Stroke Centers Have Slight Survival Edge

TUESDAY, July 26, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- The odds of surviving a stroke are slightly better for patients treated at hospitals with primary stroke centers (PSCs), but only if stroke patients get to the center in less than 90 minutes, according to research published online July 25 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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American Red Cross Says Blood Donations Needed Urgently

TUESDAY, July 26, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- The American Red Cross says it has an urgent need for blood donations, with less than a five-day supply of blood on hand to help those who need it.

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Delaying Pregnancy Could Reduce Risk of Zika Infection

TUESDAY, July 26, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- For the population of Colombia, pregnancy delays of sufficient duration can reduce the risk of prenatal Zika virus infections, according to research published online July 26 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Induced Labor Not Associated With Autism Risk

TUESDAY, July 26, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Inducing labor won't raise a pregnant woman's risk of having a child with autism, according to a study published online July 25 in JAMA Pediatrics.

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Medical Students Often Track Progress of Former Patients

TUESDAY, July 26, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Many U.S. medical students use electronic health records to track the progress of their former patients and confirm the accuracy of their diagnoses, according to research letter published online July 25 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Risk of Contracting Zika at Rio Olympics Small

TUESDAY, July 26, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Travelers and competitors at the 2016 Olympic Games in Brazil are not likely to contract the Zika virus during their stay or bring it back to their home countries, according to an Ideas and Opinions piece published online July 26 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Delirium Often Seen in Cancer Patients in the ER

MONDAY, July 25, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Delirium is fairly common, yet often missed, in advanced cancer patients who visit emergency departments, according to a study published online July 25 in Cancer.

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CDC Updates Guidelines on Sexual Transmission of Zika

MONDAY, July 25, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- U.S. health officials on Monday updated their Zika virus guidelines, saying that pregnant women could contract Zika from a sex partner of either gender.

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Up to 1.6 Million Childbearing Women Possibly at Risk for Zika

MONDAY, July 25, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Up to 1.6 million childbearing women in Central and South America may be at risk for infection with the Zika virus by the end of the first phase of the epidemic, according to a letter published online July 25 in Nature Microbiology.

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Meds Up Hospitalization for Dehydration, Heat-Linked Illness

MONDAY, July 25, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Among veterans, initiation of many commonly-used medications is associated with increased risk of hospitalization for dehydration or heat-related illness, according to research published online July 4 in the Journal of Clinical Pharmacy and Therapeutics.

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'Walking Meetings' Feasible Strategy for Employee Wellness

MONDAY, July 25, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Converting a single weekly meeting to a walking meeting can help raise work-related physical activity levels of white-collar workers, according to a report published online June 23 in the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Preventing Chronic Disease.

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Another Non-Travel Related Case of Zika in Florida

FRIDAY, July 22, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Florida health officials say they're investigating a second possible case of locally transmitted Zika infection.

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Health Expenditures Rising for Middle Class, Wealthy

THURSDAY, July 21, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- While overall U.S. medical spending growth slowed between 2004 and 2013, expenditures rose for middle- and high-income Americans, according to research published in the July issue of Health Affairs.

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Buprenorphine-Naloxone Use in Medicare Patients Low

THURSDAY, July 21, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Doctors aren't using one of the most effective weapons at their disposal in battling opioid addiction -- buprenorphine-naloxone (Suboxone), according to a research letter published online July 20 in JAMA Psychiatry.

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Estradiol Doesn't Boost Cognitive Function After Menopause

THURSDAY, July 21, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Improvement in cognitive ability is not associated with estrogen therapy among women who use it after menopause, no matter when they start taking it, according to a study published online July 15 in Neurology.

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Buprenorphine May Be Helpful in Peripheral Neuropathic Pain

THURSDAY, July 21, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with moderate to severe diabetic peripheral neuropathic pain (DPNP), transdermal buprenorphine is effective for reducing pain, but is associated with adverse events, according to a study published online June 16 in Diabetes Care.

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Possible Local Transmission of Zika Virus in Florida

WEDNESDAY, July 20, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Florida health officials are investigating what could be the first case of locally transmitted Zika virus infection in the continental United States.

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Medicare Spending Up for Decedents Versus Survivors

WEDNESDAY, July 20, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Medicare per capita spending was much higher for beneficiaries who died during 2014 than for those who survived the entire year, according to a report published by the Kaiser Family Foundation.

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Labor Compensation, Purchased Goods, Service Biggest Spends

TUESDAY, July 19, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Labor compensation remains the single largest contributor to costs among physicians' offices, hospitals, and outpatient care centers, according to a report published in the July issue of Health Affairs.

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Player-to-Player Hits in Football Up Magnitude of Head Impacts

MONDAY, July 18, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- As officials at all levels of American football continue to debate how to prevent concussions, a new study, published online July 18 in Pediatrics, using data from devices inside the helmets of high school players confirms that hits with other players are especially damaging.

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Burnout Can Have Acute Personal, Professional Consequences

MONDAY, July 18, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Stress and burnout are increasingly prevalent among physicians, with serious personal and professional consequences, according to a report published in Medical Economics.

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Stellate Ganglion Block Beneficial in Postherpetic Neuralgia

MONDAY, July 18, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- The therapeutic benefit of stellate ganglion block for debilitating photophobia secondary to trigeminal postherpetic neuralgia has been described in a case report published online July 5 in Pain Practice.

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Growth in U.S. Health Spending Set to Average 5.8 Percent

FRIDAY, July 15, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Growth in U.S. health spending is expected to average 5.8 percent for 2015 to 2025, according to a study published in the July issue of Health Affairs.

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Review: Plant-Based Diets Tied to Improved Inflammatory Profiles

FRIDAY, July 15, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Plant-based diets are associated with improvement in obesity-related inflammatory biomarker profiles, including decreases in C-reactive protein and interleukin-6 levels, according to a review published online July 13 in Obesity Reviews.

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Supreme Court Ruling Could Impact Med School Admissions

THURSDAY, July 14, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Supreme Court's ruling upholding the University of Texas at Austin's consideration of race and ethnicity in college admissions has implications for medical schools, according to the American Medical Association (AMA).

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Review Links Daytime Napping With Hypertension

THURSDAY, July 14, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Daytime napping appears to be associated with increased risk of hypertension, according to a review and meta-analysis published online July 4 in the Journal of Evidence-Based Medicine.

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CV Autonomic Neuropathy Tied to Sexual Dysfunction, Incontinence

THURSDAY, July 14, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Among women with type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM) there are increased odds of female sexual dysfunction (FSD) and urinary incontinence (UI) associated with specific measures of cardiovascular autonomic neuropathy (CAN), according to a study published online June 28 in Diabetes Care.

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Effects of APOE Gene May Be Apparent in Childhood

THURSDAY, July 14, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Variations in the APOE gene may start to show effects on brain structure and mental acuity as early as preschool, according to a study published online July 13 in Neurology.

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Differences in Salary for Male, Female Faculty Physicians

WEDNESDAY, July 13, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- For physicians with faculty appointments at 24 U.S. public medical schools there are significant salary differences between men and women, even after adjustment for confounding variables, according to a study published online July 11 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Epilepsy, Febrile Seizures in Childhood May Raise ADHD Risk

WEDNESDAY, July 13, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Children who suffer from epilepsy or febrile seizures may face a higher risk of also having attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), according to a study published online July 13 in Pediatrics.

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Nilotinib Shows Early Promise for Parkinson's Disease

WEDNESDAY, July 13, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- A drug used to treat leukemia, nilotinib, has shown initial signs of promise for advanced cases of Parkinson's disease, according to a study published online July 11 in the Journal of Parkinson's Disease.

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Vagus Nerve Stimulation May Ease RA Symptoms

TUESDAY, July 12, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Electronic stimulation of the vagus nerve may help ease symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis (RA), according to a study published online July 5 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

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Burst of Moderate Exercise May Reduce Adult ADHD Symptoms

TUESDAY, July 12, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- A burst of moderate exercise may improve motivation and energy in adults with symptoms of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), according to a study published in the June issue of Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise.

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Rates of ASD Diagnosis Up With New Insurance Mandates

TUESDAY, July 12, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- More U.S. children are getting diagnosed and treated for autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in states that require commercial health insurers to cover these services, according to research published online July 11 in JAMA Pediatrics.

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Traumatic Brain Injury Tied to Risk of Parkinson's Disease

TUESDAY, July 12, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- A traumatic brain injury (TBI) with loss of consciousness may increase the risk of developing Parkinson's disease, according to research published online July 11 in JAMA Neurology.

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Utah Resident Is First Zika-Linked Death in Continental U.S.

MONDAY, July 11, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- An elderly resident of Utah who died at the end of June is the first fatality in the continental United States linked to infection with the Zika virus, local health officials said Friday.

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FDA Approves Ultrasound Device to Treat Essential Tremor

MONDAY, July 11, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- The ExAblate Neuro device has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to deliver focused ultrasound to destroy tissue in a tiny area of the brain that is thought to be involved in essential tremor.

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Medication Organization Devices Tied to Adverse Effects

MONDAY, July 11, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Medication organization devices (MODs) may cause medication-related adverse events in unintentionally nonadherent older people, according to a study published online July 5 in Health Technology Assessment.

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VA Appealing to Physicians to Join Agency

FRIDAY, July 6, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is appealing to physicians to join the agency as part of its recovery from a 2014 scandal linked to excessive wait times, according to a report published by the American Medical Association.

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Reduced Microbiome Diversity in Myalgic Encephalopathy/CFS

FRIDAY, July 8, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS) have reduced diversity and altered composition of the gut microbiome, according to a study published online June 23 in Microbiome.

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Medical Marijuana Laws Affect Medicare Part D Spending

FRIDAY, July 8, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Legalization of medical marijuana and its associated availability have affected prescribing patterns and spending in Medicare Part D, according to a study published online July 6 in Health Affairs.

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Risk Score Could Help ID Alzheimer's Risk in Young Adults

THURSDAY, July 7, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- A genetic test may one day be able to predict the risk for Alzheimer's disease (AD) in young adults, according to a study published online July 6 in Neurology.

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Many Clinical Trials Are Not Listed in Data-Sharing Repository

WEDNESDAY, July 6, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Only about half of trials registered at ClinicalTrials.gov are listed in the largest data-sharing repository, according to a research letter published online June 28 in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Gadolinium Exposure From MRI Not Linked to Parkinsonism

WEDNESDAY, July 6, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Gadolinium exposure seems not to be associated with parkinsonism, according to a research letter published online July 5 in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Deutetrabenazine Improves Motor Signs in Huntington's

WEDNESDAY, July 6, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Deutetrabenazine results in improved motor signs at 12 weeks among patients with chorea associated with Huntington's disease, according to a study published online July 5 in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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CVD Risks Way Up in Familial Hypercholesterolemia

TUESDAY, July 5, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with heterozygous familial hypercholesterolemia (FH) have a significantly increased risk for coronary heart disease (CHD) and atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD), according to research published online June 29 in Circulation.

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Few Elderly Patients Discuss Driving With Primary Physicians

TUESDAY, July 5, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- A minority of older adults who visit primary care providers have documented discussions about driving, according to research published in the June issue of the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.

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Anti-Anxiety Medication May Limit Empathetic Behavior

TUESDAY, July 5, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- In an experimental study, rats given midazolam were less likely to free trapped companions, presumably due to decreased empathy. The study findings were published online June 8 in Frontiers in Psychology.

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Brain Stimulation Could Restore Vision in Glaucoma Patients

TUESDAY, July 5, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Electrical pulses to the brain may help restore vision in some partially blind patients, according to a study published online June 29 in PLOS ONE.

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U.S. Cancer Survivors Aging, Battling Other Chronic Disease

FRIDAY, July 1, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- In 2016, nearly 62 percent of almost 16 million cancer survivors are aged 65 or older; and, by 2040, an estimated 73 percent of 26 million cancer survivors will be 65 or older, according to a report published in the July 1 issue of Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention.

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Knowledge of CT Risks Varies Among Health Care Providers

FRIDAY, July 1, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Radiologists and technologists have better knowledge about the risks associated with medical imaging examinations than referring physicians, according to a study published online June 22 in the Journal of Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences.

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Hundreds of U.S. Clinics Sell Unapproved Stem Cell 'Therapies'

FRIDAY, July 1, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Hundreds of clinics across the United States are marketing unapproved stem cell treatments for conditions ranging from aging skin to spinal cord injuries, according to a study published online June 30 in Cell Stem Cell.

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CDC Reports Jobs With the Highest Suicide Rates

FRIDAY, July 1, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- The odds of suicide are significantly higher among certain occupations, according to research published in the July 1 issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

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Fludrocortisone Linked to Reduction in Vasovagal Syncope

FRIDAY, July 1, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Fludrocortisone is associated with a reduction in the risk of vasovagal syncope, according to a study published in the July 5 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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