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Otago Medical School staff profiles

Professor Margreet Vissers

PositionResearch Professor
DepartmentDepartment of Pathology and Biomedical Science (Christchurch)
QualificationsBSc (Hons) (Cant) MSc PhD (Otago)
Research summaryVitamin C

Research

Most of my current research revolves around determining the biological functions of vitamin C (ascorbate), which is widely considered to be an important natural antioxidant. I conduct research into:
  • Vitmain C and cancer
  • Vitamin C and Immunity
  • Vitamin C and optimal health
  • White blood cells and inflammation

Publications

Chen, Q., & Vissers, M. C. M. (Eds.). (2020). Cancer and vitamin C. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press, 174p.

Chen, Q., & Vissers, M. C. M. (Eds.). (2020). Vitamin C: New biochemical and functional insights. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press, 256p.

Pullar, J. M., Dunham, S., Dachs, G. U., Vissers, M. C. M., & Carr, A. C. (2020). Erythrocyte ascorbate is a potential indicator of steady-state plasma ascorbate concentrations in healthy non-fasting individuals. Nutrients, 12(2), 418. doi: 10.3390/nu12020418

Talla, U., Bozonet, S. M., Parker, H. A., Hampton, M. B., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2019). Prolonged exposure to hypoxia induces an autophagy-like cell survival program in human neutrophils. Journal of Leukocyte Biology. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1002/jlb.4a0319-079rr

Tang, J. S., Bozonet, S. M., McKenzie, J. L., Anderson, R. F., Melton, L. D., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2019). Physiological concentrations of blueberry-derived phenolic acids reduce monocyte adhesion to human endothelial cells. Molecular Nutrition & Food Research. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1002/mnfr.201900478

Edited Book - Research

Chen, Q., & Vissers, M. C. M. (Eds.). (2020). Cancer and vitamin C. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press, 174p.

Chen, Q., & Vissers, M. C. M. (Eds.). (2020). Vitamin C: New biochemical and functional insights. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press, 256p.

Vissers, M. C. M., Hampton, M. B., & Kettle, A. J. (Eds.). (2018). Hydrogen peroxide metabolism in health and disease. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press, 456p.

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Chapter in Book - Research

Vissers, M. C. M., Pullar, J. M., & Peskin, A. V. (2018). Myeloperoxidase-derived oxidants hypochlorous acid and chloramines: Microbicidal marvels and inflammatory mischief makers. In M. C. M. Vissers, M. B. Hampton & A. J. Kettle (Eds.), Hydrogen peroxide metabolism in health and disease. (pp. 305-326). Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press.

Vissers, M. C. M., Carr, A. C., Pullar, J. M., & Bozonet, S. M. (2013). The bioavailability of vitamin C from kiwifruit. In M. Boland & P. J. Moughan (Eds.), Nutritional benefits of kiwifruit. (pp. 125-147). Waltham, MA: Academic Press. doi: 10.1016/b978-0-12-394294-4.00007-9

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Journal - Research Article

Pullar, J. M., Dunham, S., Dachs, G. U., Vissers, M. C. M., & Carr, A. C. (2020). Erythrocyte ascorbate is a potential indicator of steady-state plasma ascorbate concentrations in healthy non-fasting individuals. Nutrients, 12(2), 418. doi: 10.3390/nu12020418

Talla, U., Bozonet, S. M., Parker, H. A., Hampton, M. B., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2019). Prolonged exposure to hypoxia induces an autophagy-like cell survival program in human neutrophils. Journal of Leukocyte Biology. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1002/jlb.4a0319-079rr

Wohlrab, C., Kuiper, C., Vissers, M. C. M., Phillips, E., Robinson, B. A., & Dachs, G. U. (2019). Ascorbate modulates the hypoxic pathway by increasing intracellular activity of the HIF hydroxylases in renal cell carcinoma cells. Hypoxia, 7, 17-31. doi: 10.2147/hp.S201643

Tang, J. S., Bozonet, S. M., McKenzie, J. L., Anderson, R. F., Melton, L. D., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2019). Physiological concentrations of blueberry-derived phenolic acids reduce monocyte adhesion to human endothelial cells. Molecular Nutrition & Food Research. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1002/mnfr.201900478

Campbell, E. J., Dachs, G. U., Morrin, H. R., Davey, V., Robinson, B. A., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2019). Activation of the hypoxia pathway in breast cancer tissue and patient survival are inversely associated with tumor ascorbate levels. BMC Cancer, 19, 307. doi: 10.1186/s12885-019-5503-x

Tang, J. S., Vissers, M. C. M., Anderson, R. F., Sreebhavan, S., Bozonet, S. M., Scheepens, A., & Melton, L. D. (2018). Bioavailable blueberry-derived phenolic acids at physiological concentrations enhance Nrf2-regulated antioxidant responses in human vascular endothelial cells. Molecular Nutrition & Food Research, 62(5), 1700647. doi: 10.1002/mnfr.201700647

Wohlrab, C., Vissers, M. C. M., Phillips, E., Morrin, H., Robinson, B. A., & Dachs, G. U. (2018). The association between ascorbate and the hypoxia-inducible factors in human renal cell carcinoma requires a functional von Hippel-Lindau protein. Frontiers in Oncology, 8, 574. doi: 10.3389/fonc.2018.00574

Pullar, J. M., Carr, A. C., Bozonet, S. M., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2018). High vitamin C status is associated with elevated mood in male tertiary students. Antioxidants, 7(7), 91. doi: 10.3390/antiox7070091

Ang, A., Pullar, J. M., Currie, M. J., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2018). Vitamin C and immune cell function in inflammation and cancer [Review]. Biochemical Society Transactions. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1042/bst20180169

Conner, T. S., Brookie, K. L., Carr, A. C., Mainvil, L. A., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2017). Let them eat fruit! The effect of fruit and vegetable consumption on psychological well-being in young adults: A randomized controlled trial. PLoS ONE, 12(2), e0171206. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0171206

Brookie, K. L., Mainvil, L. A., Carr, A. C., Vissers, M. C. M., & Conner, T. S. (2017). The development and effectiveness of an ecological momentary intervention to increase daily fruit and vegetable consumption in low-consuming young adults. Appetite, 108, 32-41. doi: 10.1016/j.appet.2016.09.015

Mitsuya, K., Parker, A. N., Liu, L., Ruan, J., Vissers, M. C. M., & Myatt, L. (2017). Alterations in the placental methylome with maternal obesity and evidence for metabolic regulation. PLoS ONE, 12(10), e0186115. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0186115

Pullar, J. M., Carr, A. C., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2017). The roles of vitamin C in skin health. Nutrients, 9(8), 866. doi: 10.3390/nu9080866

Pearson, J. F., Pullar, J. M., Wilson, R., Spittlehouse, J. K., Vissers, M. C. M., Skidmore, P. M. L., Willis, J., Cameron, V. A., & Carr, A. C. (2017). Vitamin C status correlates with markers of metabolic and cognitive health in 50-year-olds: Findings of the CHALICE Cohort Study. Nutrients, 9(8), 831. doi: 10.3390/nu9080831

Pullar, J. M., Carr, A. C., Bozonet, S. M., Rosengrave, P., Kettle, A. J., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2017). Elevated seminal plasma myeloperoxidase is associated with a decreased sperm concentration in young men. Andrology, 5(3), 431-438. doi: 10.1111/andr.12327

Campbell, E. J., Vissers, M. C. M., & Dachs, G. U. (2016). Ascorbate availability affects tumor implantation-take rate and increases tumor rejection in Gulo-/- mice. Hypoxia, 4, 41-52. doi: 10.2147/HP.S103088

Carr, A. C., Pullar, J. M., Bozonet, S. M., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2016). Marginal ascorbate status (Hypovitaminosis C) results in an attenuated response to vitamin C supplementation. Nutrients, 8(6), 341. doi: 10.3390/nu8060341

Campbell, E. J., Vissers, M. C. M., Wohlrab, C., Hicks, K. O., Strother, R. M., Bozonet, S. M., Robinson, B. A., & Dachs, G. U. (2016). Pharmacokinetic and anti-cancer properties of high dose ascorbate in solid tumours of ascorbate-dependent mice. Free Radical Biology & Medicine, 99, 451-462. doi: 10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.2016.08.027

Campbell, E. J., Vissers, M. C. M., Bozonet, S., Dyer, A., Robinson, B. A., & Dachs, G. U. (2015). Restoring physiological levels of ascorbate slows tumor growth and moderates HIF-1 pathway activity in Gulo−/− mice. Cancer Medicine, 4(2), 303-314. doi: 10.1002/cam4.349

Wilkie-Grantham, R. P., Magon, N. J., Harwood, D. T., Kettle, A. J., Vissers, M. C., Winterbourn, C. C., & Hampton, M. B. (2015). Myeloperoxidase-dependent lipid peroxidation promotes the oxidative modification of cytosolic proteins in phagocytic neutrophils. Journal of Biological Chemistry, 290(15), 9896-9905. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M114.613422

Bozonet, S. M., Carr, A. C., Pullar, J. M., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2015). Enhanced human neutrophil vitamin C status, chemotaxis and oxidant generation following dietary supplementation with vitamin C-rich SunGold kiwifruit. Nutrients, 7(4), 2574-2588. doi: 10.3390/nu7042574

Kuiper, C., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2014). Ascorbate as a cofactor for Fe-and 2-oxoglutarate dependent dioxygenases: Physiological activity in tumour growth and progression. Frontiers in Oncology, 4, 359. doi: 10.3389/fonc.2014.00359

Flett, T., Campbell, E. J., Phillips, E., Vissers, M. C. M., & Dachs, G. U. (2014). Gulonolactone addition to human hepatocellular carcinoma cells with gene transfer of gulonolactone oxidase restores ascorbate biosynthesis and reduces hypoxia inducible factor 1. Biomedicines, 2(1), 98-109. doi: 10.3390/biomedicines2010098

Vissers, M. C. M., Kuiper, C., & Dachs, G. U. (2014). Regulation of the 2-oxoglutarate-dependent dioxygenases and implications for cancer. Biochemical Society Transactions, 42(4), 945-951. doi: 10.1042/bst20140118

Kuiper, C., Vissers, M. C. M., & Hicks, K. O. (2014). Pharmacokinetic modelling of ascorbate diffusion through normal and tumour tissue. Free Radical Biology & Medicine, 77, 340-352. doi: 10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.2014.09.023

Kuiper, C., Dachs, G. U., Currie, M. J., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2014). Intracellular ascorbate enhances hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF)-hydroxylase activity and preferentially suppresses the HIF-1 transcriptional response. Free Radical Biology & Medicine, 69, 308-317. doi: 10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.2014.01.033

Carr, A. C., Vissers, M. C. M., & Cook, J. S. (2014). The effect of intravenous vitamin C on cancer- and chemotherapy-related fatigue and quality of life. Frontiers in Oncology, 4, 283. doi: 10.3389/fonc.2014.00283

Kuiper, C., Dachs, G. U., Munn, D., Currie, M. J., Robinson, B. A., Pearson, J. F., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2014). Increased tumour ascorbate is associated with extended disease-free survival and decreased hypoxia-inducible factor-1 activation in human colorectal cancer. Frontiers in Oncology, 4, 10. doi: 10.3389/fonc.2014.00010

Carr, A. C., Bozonet, S. M., Pullar, J. M., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2013). Mood improvement in young adult males following supplementation with gold kiwifruit, a high-vitamin C food. Journal of Nutritional Science, 2, e24. doi: 10.1017/jns.2013.12

Carr, A. C., Bozonet, S. M., Pullar, J. M., Simcock, J. W., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2013). A randomized steady-state bioavailability study of synthetic versus natural (kiwifruit-derived) vitamin C. Nutrients, 5(9), 3684-3695. doi: 10.3390/nu5093684

Carr, A. C., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2013). Synthetic or food-derived vitamin C—are they equally bioavailable? Nutrients, 5(11), 4284-4304. doi: 10.3390/nu5114284

Carr, A. C., Bozonet, S. M., Pullar, J. M., Simcock, J. W., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2013). Human skeletal muscle ascorbate is highly responsive to changes in vitamin C intake and plasma concentrations. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 97, 800-807. doi: 10.3945/ajcn.112.053207

Carr, A. C., Bozonet, S. M., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2013). A randomised cross-over pharmacokinetic bioavailability study of synthetic versus kiwifruit-derived vitamin C. Nutrients, 5(11), 4451-4461. doi: 10.3390/nu5114451

Carr, A. C., Pullar, J. M., Moran, S., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2012). Bioavailability of vitamin C from kiwifruit in non-smoking males: Determination of ‘healthy’ and ‘optimal’ intakes. Journal of Nutritional Science, 1, e14. doi: 10.1017/jns.2012.15

Stacey, M. M., Vissers, M. C., & Winterbourn, C. C. (2012). Oxidation of 2-Cys peroxiredoxins in human endothelial cells by hydrogen peroxide, hypochlorous acid and chloramines. Antioxidants & Redox Signaling, 17(3), 411-421. doi: 10.1089/ars.2011.4348

Parker, A., Cuddihy, S. L., Son, T. G., Vissers, M. C. M., & Winterbourn, C. C. (2011). Roles of superoxide and myeloperoxidase in ascorbate oxidation in stimulated neutrophils and H2O2-treated HL60 cells. Free Radical Biology & Medicine, 51(7), 1399-1405. doi: 10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.2011.06.029

Vissers, M. C. M., Bozonet, S. M., Pearson, J. F., & Braithwaite, L. J. (2011). Dietary ascorbate intake affects steady state tissue concentrations in vitamin C-deficient mice: Tissue deficiency after suboptimal intake and superior bioavailability from a food source (kiwifruit). American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 93, 292-301. doi: 10.3945/ajcn.110.004853

Bozonet, S. M., Scott-Thomas, A. J., Nagy, P., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2010). Hypothiocyanous acid is a potent inhibitor of apoptosis and caspase 3 activation in endothelial cells. Free Radical Biology & Medicine, 49(6), 1054-1063. doi: 10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.2010.06.028

Kuiper, C., Molenaar, I. G. M., Dachs, G. U., Currie, M. J., Sykes, P. H., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2010). Low ascorbate levels are associated with increased hypoxia-inducible factor-1 activity and an aggressive tumor phenotype in endometrial cancer. Cancer Research, 70(14), 5749-5758. doi: 10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-10-0263

Stacey, M. M., Peskin, A. V., Vissers, M. C., & Winterbourn, C. C. (2009). Chloramines and hypochlorous acid oxidize erythrocyte peroxiredoxin 2. Free Radical Biology & Medicine, 47(10), 1468-1476. doi: 10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.2009.08.022

Cuddihy, S. L., Parker, A., Harwood, D. T., Vissers, M. C. M., & Winterbourn, C. C. (2008). Ascorbate interacts with reduced glutathione to scavenge phenoxyl radicals in HL60 cells. Free Radical Biology & Medicine, 44(8), 1637-1644. doi: 10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.2008.01.021

Vissers, M. C. M., Gunningham, S. P., Morrison, M. J., Dachs, G. U., & Currie, M. J. (2007). Modulation of hypoxia-inducible factor-1 alpha in cultured primary cells by intracellular ascorbate. Free Radical Biology & Medicine, 42, 765-772.

Vissers, M. C. M., & Wilkie, R. P. (2007). Ascorbate deficiency results in impaired neutrophil apoptosis and clearance and is associated with up-regulation of hypoxia-inducible factor 1α. Journal of Leukocyte Biology, 81, 1236-1244. doi: 10.1189/jlb.0806541

Wilkie, R. P., Vissers, M. C. M., Dragunow, M., & Hampton, M. B. (2007). A functional NADPH oxidase prevents caspase involvement in the clearance of phagocytic neutrophils. Infection & Immunity, 75(7), 3256-3263.

Midwinter, R. G., Cheah, F.-C., Moskovitz, J., Vissers, M. C., & Winterbourn, C. C. (2006). IκB is a sensitive target for oxidation by cell-permeable chloramines: Inhibition of NF-κB activity by glycine chloramine through methionine oxidation. Biochemical Journal, 396, 71-78.

Gokhalé, P., Patel, T., Morrison, M. J., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2006). The effect of intracellular ascorbate on the susceptibility of HL60 and Jurkat cells to chemotherapy agents. Apoptosis, 11, 1737-1746.

Cheah, F. C., Hampton, M. B., Darlow, B. A., Winterbourn, C. C., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2005). Detection of apoptosis by caspase-3 activation in tracheal aspirate neurophils from premature infants: Relationship with NF-KB activation. Journal of Leukocyte Biology, 77, 432-437.

Cheah, F. C., Winterbourn, C. C., Darlow, B. A., Mocatta, T. J., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2005). Nuclear factor κB activation in pulmonary leukocytes from infants with hyaline membrane disease: Associations with chorioamnionitis and Ureaplasma urealyticum colonization. Pediatric Research, 57(5), 616-623. doi: 10.1203/01.PDR.0000156209.37627.82

Midwinter, R. G., Peskin, A. V., Vissers, M. C. M., & Winterbourn, C. C. (2004). Extracellular oxidation by taurine chloramine activates ERK via the epidermal growth factor receptor. Journal of Biological Chemistry, 279(31), 32205-32211.

Pullar, J., Winterbourn, C. C., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2002). The effect of hypochlorous acid on the expression of adhesion molecules and activation of NF-κ in cultured human endothelial cells. Antioxidants & Redox Signaling, 4(1), 5-15.

Hampton, M. B., Vissers, M. C., Keenan, J. I., & Winterbourn, C. C. (2002). Oxidant-mediated phosphatidylserine exposure and macrophage uptake of activated neutrophils: possible impairment in chronic granulomatous disease. Journal of Leukocyte Biology, 71(5), 775-781.

Midwinter, R. G., Vissers, M. C. M., & Winterbourn, C. C. (2001). Hypochlorous acid stimulation of the MAP-kinase pathway enhances cell survival. Archives of Biochemistry & Biophysics, 394(1), 13-20. doi: 10.1006/abbi.2001.2530

Vissers, M. C. M., Lee, W. G., & Hampton, M. B. (2001). Regulation of apoptosis by vitamin C. Specific protection of the apoptotic machinery against exposure to chlorinated oxidants. Journal of Biological Chemistry, 276(50), 46835-46840. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M107664200

Vissers, M. C. M., Carr, A. C., & Winterbourn, C. C. (2001). Fatty acid chlorohydrins and bromohydrins are cytotoxic to human endothelial cells. Redox Report, 6, 49-55. doi: 10.1179/135100001101536030

Pullar, J. M., Vissers, M. C. M., & Winterbourn, C. C. (2001). Glutathione oxidation by hypochlorous acid in endothelial cells produces glutathione sulfonamide as a major product but not glutathione disulfide. Journal of Biological Chemistry, 276(25), 22120-22125. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M102088200

Pullar, J. M., Vissers, M. C. M., & Winterbourn, C. C. (2000). Living with a killer: The effects of hypochlorous acid on mammalian cells. IUBMB Life, 50, 259-266.

Pullar, J. M., Winterbourn, C. C., & Vissers, M. C. M. (1999). Loss of GSH and thiol enzymes in endothelial cellls exposed to sublethal concentrations of hypochlorous acid. American Journal of Physiology: Heart & Circulatory Physiology, 277, H1505-H1512.

Vissers, M. C. M., Pullar, J. M., & Hampton, M. B. (1999). Hypochlorous acid causes caspase activation and apoptosis or growth arrest in human endothelial cells. Biochemical Journal, 344, 443-449.

Vissers, M. C. M., Carr, A. C., & Chapman, A. L. P. (1998). A comparison of human red cell lysis by hypochlorous and hypobromous acid: insights into the mechanism of lysis. Biochemical Journal, 330, 131-138. doi: 10.1042/bj3300131

Vissers, M. C. M., & Thomas, C. (1997). Hypochlorous acid disrupts the adhesive properties of subendothelial matrix. Free Radical Biology & Medicine, 23(3), 401-411. doi: 10.1016/S0891-5849(96)00619-3

Carr, A. C., Vissers, M. C., Domigan, N. M., & Winterbourn, C. C. (1997). Modification of red cell membrane lipids by hypochlorus acid and haemolysis by preformed lipid chlorohydrins. Redox Report, 3, 263-271.

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Journal - Research Other

Das, A. B., Kakadia, P. M., Wojcik, D., Pemberton, L., Browett, P. J., Bohlander, S. K., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2019). Clinical remission following ascorbate treatment in a case of acute myeloid leukemia with mutations in TET2 and WT1. Blood Cancer Journal, 9, 82. doi: 10.1038/s41408-019-0242-4

Vissers, M. C. M., & Das, A. B. (2018). Potential mechanisms of action for vitamin C in cancer: Reviewing the evidence. Frontiers in Physiology, 9, 809. doi: 10.3389/fphys.2018.00809

Carr, A. C., Vissers, M. C. M., & Cook, J. S. (2015). Parenteral vitamin C relieves chronic fatigue and pain in a patient with rheumatoid arthritis and mononeuritis multiplex secondary to CNS vasculitis. Case Reports in Clinical Pathology, 2(2), 57-61. doi: 10.5430/crcp.v2n2p57

Dachs, G. U., Munn, D. G., Carr, A. C., Vissers, M. C. M., & Robinson, B. A. (2014). Consumption of vitamin C is below recommended daily intake in many cancer patients and healthy volunteers in Christchurch. New Zealand Medical Journal, 127(1390). Retrieved from http://www.nzma.org.nz/journal

Carr, A. C., Vissers, M. C. M., & Cook, J. (2014). Parenteral vitamin C for palliative care of terminal cancer patients. New Zealand Medical Journal, 127(1396). Retrieved from http://www.nzma.org.nz/journal

Carr, A. C., Vissers, M. C. M., & Cook, J. (2014). Relief from cancer chemotherapy side effects with pharmacologic vitamin C. New Zealand Medical Journal, 127(1388). Retrieved from http://www.nzma.org.nz/journal

Pullar, J. M., Carr, A. C., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2013). Vitamin C supplementation and kidney stone risk. New Zealand Medical Journal, 126(1384). Retrieved from http://www.nzma.org.nz/journal

Carr, A. C., Pullar, J. M., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2013). Beating the blues: The association between fruit and vegetable intake and improved mood. New Zealand Medical Journal, 126(1384). Retrieved from http://www.nzma.org.nz/journal

Carr, A. C., Vissers, M. C. M., Lewis, J., & Elder, P. (2012). Multiple nutrient insufficiencies: Hypovitaminosis D and C in young adult New Zealand males. New Zealand Medical Journal, 125(1364). Retrieved from http://www.nzma.org.nz/journal

Carr, A. C., & Vissers, M. C. M. (2012). Good nutrition matters: Hypovitaminosis C associated with depressed mood and poor wound healing. New Zealand Medical Journal, 125(1362). Retrieved from http://www.nzma.org.nz/journal

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