Press Releases & Statements 2009

 

Denver Museum of Nature & Science to Host All-New BODY WORLDS Exhibition

Gunther von Hagens' BODY WORLDS & The Story of the Heart reveals the intricacies of the cardiovascular system

(Denver - December 8, 2009) Four years after BODY WORLDS 2 brought record crowds to the Denver Museum of Nature & Science, a new blockbuster exhibition, BODY WORLDS & The Story of the Heart, will open to the public in the first quarter of 2010. Additional details, including run dates and ticket prices, will be available on January 7, 2010.

BODY WORLDS & The Story of the Heart, an all-new exhibition, will reveal-through the lenses of anatomy, cardiology, psychology and culture-how the heart nourishes, regulates and sustains life. The exhibition will give Museum visitors profound insight into the human body, health and disease, and the intricate world of the cardiovascular system. The exhibition will awe visitors with more than 200 human specimens, including whole-body plastinates, organs and translucent body slices.

BODY WORLDS & The Story of the Heart puts human anatomy in clear context. The exhibition is organized according to the major systems of the body, including the locomotive, nervous, reproductive, digestive and cardiovascular systems.

The striking whole-body plastinates in BODY WORLDS allow visitors to see inside the staggeringly complex and interconnected network of muscles, tendons and blood vessels that make up our bodies. The specimens on display reach the public through the Institute for Plastination body donation program: all of the donors agreed before their deaths that their bodies could be displayed for public education purposes. More than 10,000 individuals have bequeathed their bodies to Dr. Gunther von Hagens' Institute for Plastination in Heidelberg, Germany.

More than 687,000 visitors came to see BODY WORLDS 2 at the Museum during its 19-week run from March 10 to July 23, 2006, and the Museum broke the daily attendance records of all previous North American venues that hosted BODY WORLDS 2. Due to its popularity, the exhibition remained open for 64 consecutive hours during the final weekend in Denver, when nearly 30,000 people flocked to see the exhibition before it closed.

"This is a remarkable new opportunity for our community," said Dr. Bridget Coughlin, the Museum's vice president of strategic partnerships and programs and curator of human health. "Visiting BODY WORLDS & The Story of the Heart is a compelling experience that makes us appreciate the complexity and beauty of the human body. Not only is the exhibition awe-inspiring, it transforms us, increasing our understanding of health issues and motivating us to make healthier life choices. We anticipate tremendous interest in this exhibition. The response when we exhibited BODY WORLDS 2 was overwhelmingly positive, and the exhibition appealed to a diverse audience."

About the Denver Museum of Nature & Science
The Denver Museum of Nature & Science is the Rocky Mountain Region's leading resource for informal science education. A variety of engaging exhibits, discussions and activities help Museum visitors celebrate and understand the natural wonders of Colorado, Earth and the universe. The Museum is located at 2001 Colorado Blvd., Denver, CO, 80205. To learn more about the Museum, check www.dmns.org, or call 303-322-7009. Many of the Museum's educational programs and exhibits are made possible in part by generous funding from the citizens of the seven-county metro area through the Scientific & Cultural Facilities District.

About Gunther von Hagens' BODY WORLDS
Dr. Gunther von Hagens invented Plastination in 1977, in an effort to improve the education of medical students. He created the BODY WORLDS exhibitions to bring anatomy to the public. Since 1995, 29 million people in Asia, Europe and North America have visited the BODY WORLDS exhibitions.

The organs and whole-body plastinates were derived from generous body donors, individuals who designated that upon their death their bodies could be used for educational purposes in the BODY WORLDS exhibitions. More than 10,000 donors have bequeathed their bodies to Dr. von Hagens' Institute for Plastination in Heidelberg, Germany. For more information on BODY WORLDS, please visit www.bodyworlds.com

For more information, please contact
Heather Hope, APR
Public Relations Manager
Denver Museum of Nature & Science
303-370-8372
heather.hope@dmns.org

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BODY WORLDS ANATOMICAL EXHIBITIONS OF DONOR BODIES RECEIVES 28 MILLIONTH VISITOR.

Los Angeles – Gunther von Hagens’ BODY WORLDS, the original anatomical exhibitions of real human bodies received their 28 millionth visitor on Sunday, July 19th, 2009.  Now showing at museums around the world, the six editions of the exhibitions—curated ‘chapters’ from  anatomist, Dr. Gunther von Hagens’ “HUMAN SAGA” project—have broken attendance records at every stop of their international tour. 

The only anatomical exhibitions with an established body donation program, the exhibits have compelled legions of people around the world to participate in what the organizers call, a joint work.  “It is a collaboration between donor, anatomist, and visitor, some even agree it’s a joint quest towards enlightenment,” said Dr. Angelina Whalley, planner and designer of the exhibitions.

BODY WORLDS made its debut in Tokyo in 1995 and has toured more than 50 cities in Europe, Asia, and North America since then.  Visitor comment books inside the exhibitions, now numbered in the thousands, record a litany of thoughts  by the public about the post-mortal bodies on display. The musings run the gamut from simple to profound—observations about the function and form of the human body, resolutions about health, aspirations about life, debates on evolution vs. creationism,  meditations on death and dying, raging commentary about when life begins, religious musings, and spirited exchanges between pro-choice and pro-life visitors. “BODY WORLDS teaches visitors about the fragility and importance of the body and makes people aware of their own mortality. To my surprise, it also inadvertently inspires religious and philosophical reflection and insights,” said Dr. von Hagens.

The exhibitions are made possible by plastination, Dr. von Hagens’ patented invention for preserving anatomical specimens that allow them to be displayed outside a clinical setting.  “Every physician, at one time or another, is struck by the sheer elegance and intricacy of the human body.  But few laypersons get a chance to experience such wonder.  [BODY WORLDS] is a rare opportunity for the layperson to share in this privileged view of ourselves,” said Dr. Neil S. Wenger MD of UCLA Medical School after viewing the exhibit in Los Angeles.BODY WORLDS is currently showing in Berlin and Augsburg in Germany; Haifa, Israel; London, UK; and Buffalo, NY and San Diego, CA in the US.

Dr. von Hagens invented Plastination in  an effort to improve the education of medical students. He created BODY WORLDS to bring anatomy to the public.  For more information visit www.bodyworlds.com

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The Ontario Science Centre to host BODY WORLDS & The Story of the Heart

Dr. Gunther von Hagens’ Exhibition Features Special Presentation on the Heart

(Toronto, ON, June 22, 2009) Four years after BODY WORLDS had its Canadian premiere and BODY WORLDS 2 brought record crowds to the Ontario Science Centre, a new blockbuster exhibition, BODY WORLDS & The Story of the Heart, will open to the public on October 9, 2009, with a special media preview on October 8.

BODY WORLDS & The Story of the Heart, an all-new exhibition, will reveal through the lenses of anatomy, cardiology, psychology and culture how the heart nourishes, regulates and sustains life. The exhibition will give Science Centre visitors a profound insight into the human body, health and disease, and the intricate world of the cardiovascular system. The exhibition will awe visitors with over 200 human specimens including whole-body plastinates, organs and translucent body slices.    

The striking whole-body plastinates in BODY WORLDS allow visitors to see inside the staggeringly complex and interconnected network of muscles, tendons and blood vessels that make up our bodies. The specimens on display come through the Institute for Plastination’s body donation program – all of the donors had agreed before their deaths that their bodies can be displayed for public education purposes. Sixty-eight Canadians have bequeathed their bodies to von Hagens’ Institute for Plastination in Heidelberg, Germany.

Nearly half a million visitors came to see BODY WORLDS 2 at the Science Centre during its five-month run from September 30, 2005 to February 26, 2006. Due to its popularity, doors remained open for 61 consecutive hours during the final weekend, when over 32,000 people flocked to see the exhibition before it closed.

“The response when we exhibited BODY WORLDS 2 previously was overwhelmingly positive. The exhibition appealed to a diverse array of audiences – adults interested in health issues, families wanting to learn more about the importance of healthy life choices and students visiting as part of a science, art or physical education class. Overwhelmingly, visitors to BODY WORLDS are filled with awe by the discovery of what they are inside,” said Lesley Lewis, CEO of the Ontario Science Centre. “BODY WORLDS invites you to see, with your own eyes, how intricately we are made; how powerful we are, and how fragile. Without question, this exhibition shows you in dramatic and tangible ways the differences between caring for and neglecting your body.”

BODY WORLDS puts human anatomy in clear context. BODY WORLDS & The Story of the Heart is organized according to the major systems of the body including the locomotive, nervous, reproductive, digestive and cardiovascular systems.

The exhibition will be time-ticketed, with tickets going on sale to the public June 29 at the box office and online. Science Centre members will be able to book through the call centre starting June 22, and will receive a discount of up to 47% on admission.

This exhibition has been financially assisted by the Government of Ontario through the Ministry of Tourism, and through the Ontario Cultural Attractions Fund of the Ministry of Culture, administered by the Ontario Cultural Attractions Fund Corporation.

About the Ontario Science Centre
The Ontario Science Centre opened on September 26, 1969, pioneering the concept of an interactive science museum. Since then, well over 40 million visitors have passed through its doors. It is a model for over 1,000 science centres around the world that have been built since its inception.

The Ontario Science Centre uses science as the lens to inspire and actively engage people in new ways of seeing, understanding and thinking about themselves and the world around them. The Ontario Science Centre is an agency of the Government of Ontario. Please visit us at www.ontariosciencecentre.ca

About Gunther von Hagens' BODY WORLDS
Dr. Gunther von Hagens invented Plastination in 1977, in an effort to improve the education of medical students. He created the BODY WORLDS exhibitions to bring anatomy to the public.

The organs and whole-body plastinates in the exhibition derive from people who have, in their lifetime, generously donated their bodies for Plastination, to specifically educate future generations about health. More than 10,000 donors have bequeathed their bodies to von Hagens’ Institute for Plastination in Heidelberg, Germany. For more information on BODY WORLDS, please visit, www.bodyworlds.com

For more information please contact:
Anna Relyea
Associate Director, Strategic Communications
Ontario Science Centre
416-696-3273
anna.relyea(at)osc.on.ca

Christine CrosbieMedia Relations Officer
Ontario Science Centre
416-696-3191
christine.crosbie(at)osc.on.ca

Ellen Flowers
Media Relations Officer
Ontario Science Centre
416-696-3154
ellen.flowers(at)osc.on.ca

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BUFFALO MUSEUM OF SCIENCE TO HOST MOST SUCCESSFUL TRAVELING EXHIBIT EVERBODY WORLDS & The Story of the Heart Opens July 9

BUFFALO, NY (May 20, 2009) -- Beginning July 9, Gunther von Hagens’ BODY WORLDS & The Story of the Heart, the international traveling exhibition by pioneering scientist, Dr. Gunther von Hagens, will open for the first time in New York at the Buffalo Museum of Science for a limited engagement. The exhibition is presented by BlueCrossBlueShield of Western New York and M&T Bank.

BODY WORLDS will include more than 200 specimens. More than 27 million visitors in 47 cities around the world, including the major capitals of Europe have seen BODY WORLDS since its debut in 1995.

“We are delighted that Buffalo will join the ranks of world class cities that have presented BODY WORLDS. It is an educational, scientific, and cultural experience thatwe wished to bring to our community, “said Mark Mortenson, CEO and president of the Buffalo Museum of Science. “Western New York wants, and deserves, the same type of world-class, educational and cultural opportunities as other major world cities.”

Tickets
Tickets for BODY WORLDS at the Buffalo Museum of Science are available immediately at www.sciencebuff.org, by calling (877) 687-3359, or at the museum box office during regular business hours (Wednesday – Saturday 10-5 p.m. Sunday Noon – 5 p.m.).
General Admission prices are $22.00 for adults (ages 19-61); $19.50 for seniors (62+); and $16.00 for children 3 to 18 and students and military with ID.
Special rates for Museum Members as well as schools and other groups of 15 or more apply.

About the Exhibition
BODY WORLDS & The Story of the Heart is organized according to the major systems o fthe body, including the locomotive, nervous, reproductive, digestive and cardiovascular systems.
The exhibit also features a special presentation on the heart, revealing through the lenses of anatomy, cardiology, psychology and culture how this four-chambered muscle nourishes, regulates and sustains life. Through the life-like and dramatic poses of full-body specimens and detailed presentation of organs and body parts, guests gain profound insights into the structure and function of healthy and unhealthy bodies.

BODY WORLDS specimens, both organs and whole-bodies, have undergone Plastination—Dr. von Hagens’ groundbreaking method of halting decomposition and preserving the body after death for medical study, which he invented in 1977. During Plastination, all bodily fluids and soluble fats are replaced with reactive resins and
elastomers such as silicon rubber and epoxy resins, through a vacuum process. After gas, heat, or light curing, the specimens assume rigidity and permanence.“The purpose of Plastination from its very inception was a scientific one, to educate medical students,” said Dr. von Hagens. “But the interest that laypeople had in the
plastinated specimens inspired me to think of creating public exhibitions, which was followed by the realization that I had to offer a heightened sense of aesthetics, to avoid shocking the public and to capture their imagination.”

The striking whole-body plastinates in BODY WORLDS—people who in their lifetimes donated their bodies for Plastination for the express purpose of educating future generations about health—allow viewers to see inside the staggeringly complex and interconnected network of muscles, tendons and blood vessels that make up our bodies. More than 10,000 people have donated their bodies to Dr. von Hagens Institute for Plastination, 950 of them from North America.

"BODY WORLDS is a collaboration, a joint quest towards enlightenment between donor,anatomist, and visitor,” said Dr. von Hagens.

For more information about the exhibit, buying tickets, planning your visit, volunteer activities,field trips, private events and group sales, please visit www.sciencebuff.org.

About the Buffalo Museum of Science
The Buffalo Museum of Science is the non-profit educational institution dedicated to the study and interpretation of the natural and physical sciences. Its extensive collections of over 600,000 specimens and artifacts represent all facets of the natural world with an emphasis on Western New York as well as man-made objects spanning the globe. Based at 1020 Humboldt Parkway and anchoring Buffalo’s East Side in Olmsted-designed Martin Luther King, Jr. Park since 1929, the Museum presents a wide variety of programs and services for children, teachers, families, adults, and community organizations throughout each year. The Museum also operates Tifft Nature Preserve in South Buffalo, a 264-acre urban wetland preserve on reclaimed former industrial landand seasonally sponsors archaeological exploration at the Hiscock Site in nearby Genesee County, NY, one of North America’s richest Ice Age sites.

For further information on the Museum and its upcoming activities, call 716-896-5200 or visit www.buffalomuseumofscience.org.

Press Information:
Amy Biber
Buffalo Museum of Science
Marketing Manager
716.896.5200 x312
abiber(at)sciencebuff.org

BODY WORLDS Contact
Gail Hamburg
Director of Communications
Gunther von Hagens' BODY WORLDS
& Institute for Plastination, Heidelberg
g.hamburg(at)plastination.com

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GUNTHER VON HAGENS’ BODY WORLDS AND KÖRPERWELTEN –
NOT AFFILIATED WITH PARIS COPYCAT DISPLAY.

Heidelberg, Germany, April 21, 2009

The Institute for Plastination in Heidelberg, Germany and its Scientific Director, anatomist Dr. Gunther von Hagens—creators of the world renowned anatomical exhibitions: BODY WORLDS and KÖRPERWELTEN—categorically state that their exhibitions are NOT in any way associated with or affiliated to OUR BODY, the display in Paris which has been ordered by the French court to close its doors to the public.

In the last twenty four hours, French and other media have mistakenly referred to and referenced Dr. Gunther von Hagens and BODY WORLDS, when reporting on the French judicial ruling banning the display in Paris. Media coverage of the ban confuses the public by referring to BODY WORLDS when discussing the copycat in Paris, and illustrating news articles with images from BODY WORLDS.

Dr. von Hagens says: “I have been an anatomist for more than thirty five years, and during my career I have taken great pains to present anatomical exhibitions in the tradition of Renaissance anatomy.  The exhibitions that bear my name are Western scientific enquiries that are bound by inviolable European standards of human rights and ethics. My exhibitions only use donor bodies, primarily German, from the Heidelberg Institute for Plastination’s Body Donation Program.   BODY WORLDS is not affiliated or connected in any way to the cadaver display in Paris.”

    For more than five years, a number of businessmen attempting to imitate Dr. von Hagens’ publicly and critically acclaimed exhibitions, have roamed the globe with cadaver displays of unclaimed and found bodies from China.  Several of the copycat displays have drawn criticism from ethicists, human rights organizations, and religious groups due to the absence of evidence showing body donation and legal consent of those on display.

The Institute for Plastination and Dr. von Hagens reiterate that they are not associated to the display in Paris facing a ban ruled by the French court. “As a former political prisoner in East Germany, I believe firmly in the principles of democracy, freedom, and free will.  Thus from the beginning of my career, when I established the only body donation program for Plastination in the world, I felt morally obligated to the doctrine of legal consent for those on public display.  It is imperative that the media and public of Paris and France know that I am not associated with the cadaver display in Paris, and that any reports suggesting otherwise are false.”

For more information, please visit www.bodyworlds.com.

Gail Hamburg, Tel + 312602 5369 e-mail g.hamburg(at)plastination.com
Georgina Gomez, Tel + 213 291 9572 e-mail: g.gomez(at)plastination.com

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BODY WORLDS in Haifa:

A Scientific, Spiritual Experience for those who choose to see it

Los Angeles, CA – March 26, 2009

The continuing media coverage of the debate in Israel over the upcoming BODY WORLDS exhibition in Haifa has inadvertently neglected to present the many dimensions of this scientific and scholarly endeavor.  

The historical, religious, and scientific contexts of anatomical exhibitions in general and BODY WORLDS in particular, the support of our public health exhibition by religious groups and spiritual leaders across faiths including Judaism, and the lifestyle conversions and philosophical and religious insights reported by millions of our visitors are worthy of full consideration in this vigorous discourse about BODY WORLDS.

Our exhibitions are firmly set in the tradition of scientific, aesthetic anatomy that began during the Renaissance when it was believed that man’s life was worthy of study and contemplation. Anatomy and dissection were viewed by early religious as a gaze at divinity and as memento mori—profound reminders of one’s own mortality and the life to come.

Before there was BODY WORLDS, there was the work of Renaissance anatomist, Andreas Vesalius (1514 – 1564), author of a canonical medical reference that became the foundation of modern anatomy, and by extension, contemporary Western medicine.  Before there was plastination, there were early anatomical specimen preservation methods as varied as herbal compotes and wax, and religious displays of post-mortal relics by the church. And before there was clinical anatomy, there were the humanistic explorations of Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo through dissections. 

In discussing BODY WORLDS, there have been allegations that the anatomical specimens in the exhibit stem from bodies other than those of donors. These statements are categorically false. BODY WORLDS is a unique joint work in science—a collaboration between anatomist, donors, and visitors. The Institute for Plastination’s body donation program, with a roster of more than 9990 donors, has been vetted by bio-ethicists, museum lawyers, and ad hoc ethics committees assembled by dozens of venerable museums in the United States and Europe. The main findings of these ethics reviews have been reported widely in science publications, including the esteemed Journal of Medical Humanities, the international academic journal for medical researchers.

BODY WORLDS elicits a range of opinions in the Jewish community, and among its medical practitioners, scientists, ethicists, and religious leaders.  Though there are those who oppose the exhibition, there are many more who do not.  In Boston, Rabbi D. Meyer told the Jewish Journal that the exhibition was “inspirational and can actually deepen Jewish spirituality — showing the beauty and complexity of the human body and exalting the miracle of creation.”  In Los Angeles, Rabbi M. Feinstein added his support for the exhibition in an ethics review: “When we see with our own eyes the unbelievable design of the human body in all its fine detail, it helps us understand better the designer who created and shaped humanity.”

While we are delighted that so many visitors find religious meaning in the exhibitions, BODY WORLDS is, for us, a scientific work focused on human anatomy and health. We present the exhibition only to those who wish to see it, and respect the decision of those who choose not to visit the exhibition.
BODY WORLDS will be on display at MadaTech in Haifa, Israel on April 06, 2009.  For more information visit: www.bodyworlds.com and www.madatech.org.il

Members of the Media, please contact:

In Israel:
Arbel Communications, Tel: 972-3-699-2121 e-mail arbel3(at)arbel.biz

In USA: 
Gail Hamburg, Tel + 312602 5369 e-mail g.hamburg(at)plastination.com
Georgina Gomez, Tel + 213 291 9572 e-mail: g.gomez(at)plastination.com

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MadaTech, National Museum of Science, Technology and Space is proud to present:

Gunther von Hagens' BODY WORLDS, The Original

The most talked about exhibition in the world, for the first time in Israel

March 15, 2009 - 20 authentic displays and over 130 organs of the human body will arrive at the beginning of April 09 to Israel. This is the Body Worlds exhibition – the most talked about exhibition in the world, which uses real human bodies, enabling the exposure of the amazing physical structure of the human body accurately.

This is the first time that an exhibition of this kind is being displayed in Israel.
Over 26 million people worldwide have visited the exhibition.
The exhibition is currently on display in the US (San Diego, Tampa) and in Europe (London, Heidelberg, Sevilla).

The exhibition's purpose and goal is to reveal and expose the anatomical structure of the human body and its function, in a unique lesson, and to teach us about the complexity of the human body, its anatomy, and the importance of leading a healthy way of life.

The exhibition includes, as aforesaid, 20 authentic whole body specimens  and over 130 internal organs, that all went through the process of conservation, which enables, in addition to viewing the marvelous systems of the human body, to observe the way the human body functions, whether in a healthy state or at illness - while it collapses, and to observe the human organs while in distress.

In addition, individual specimens are used for comparison between healthy and diseased organs - healthy lung with that of a smoker, healthy liver with that of an alcoholic liver, and a comparison between an obese human body and a healthy lean one.
More on display at the exhibition: the blood system, the nervous system, the digestion system, etc.

The source of the exhibition is from donors – people, who during their lifetime, declared their willingness, by informed consent, to display their bodies at the exhibition, after their death, for the benefit of education, health and the awareness of the wide public to the different systems of the human body.
The unique technique of Plastination and preservation of the human body was invented by the physician and anatomist Dr. Gunther von Hagens.
The exhibition is currently on display in different science museums around the world, and after thoroughly investigating all the display platforms in Israel, the exhibition's owners have decided to choose MadaTech – Israel National Museum of Science, Technology and Space in Haifa as the appropriate location for displaying the exhibition.

The exhibition opening Date: April 6, 2009

 Opening days and hours: 
 Sunday:
 12:00-18:00
 Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday: 10:00-18:00
 Thursday: 10:00-20:00
 Friday: 10:00-16:00
 Saturday: 10:00-18:00
 The exhibition duration: three months
 Tickets price: 85 Shekels

According to "Isracard" campaign – 25 Shekels, in addition for 360 points

The exhibition is on display in collaboration with the Technion – Israel Institute of Technology, Haifa Municipality, Rambam Medical Center and the Israel Cancer Association.
The exhibition Internet site: www.bodyworlds.co.il
The international exhibition internet site: www.bodyworlds.com


Quotes from Ethic Advisors, USA

"The glory of God is found in the human fully alive. The human body is essential to our humanity – to our personhood – and any growth in the understanding and knowledge of our human body leads to a greater appreciation of our dignity as human persons."
Father Richard Benson, C.M., Ph.D., St. John's Seminary, Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles.

"I was very proud that the Science Center board and the professionals involved were willing to take the risk of receiving some flak for the higher gain of educating the public about health and the human body. Moreover, when we see with our own eyes the unbelievable design of the human body in all its fine detail, it helps us understand better the Designer who created and shaped humanity."
Rabbi Morley Feinstein, University Synagogue

"People are preoccupied with their bodies but they don't know how they function. Body Worlds will give them access to the many miracles of the human body and help them understand their physical selves. As physicians we are delighted with the growing medical knowledge of our patients as we and they together try to optimize their health."
Dr. Stanley G. Koreman, MD., UCLA Medical Center

"This exhibit gives the public an opportunity usually reserved for medical professionals. Viewers get a chance to look inside their own bodies and experience the wonder and respect for what it means to be human."
Prof. Dr. Hans-Martin Sass, Kennedy Institute of Ethics, Georgetown University.

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