Faculty

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Elizabeth R. Sowell-Crowell, PhD
Professor of Pediatrics
Pediatrics
CHL MailStop 130 Off Campus Los Angeles
+1 323 361 7347

Overview

Elizabeth Sowell, PhD and her team have been dedicated to understanding how the brain changes in structure and function both in typically developing children and adolescent populations, and in populations with neurodevelopmental disorders such as fetal alcohol syndrome and autism spectrum disorders. The ultimate goal of this research is to determine how changes in the brain relate to changes in behavior and cognitive function, and to identify opportunities for educational, behavioral and pharmacologic intervention to alter abnormal patterns of brain development.

Publications

Ware AL, Glass L, Crocker N, Deweese BN, Coles CD, Kable JA, May PA, Kalberg WO, Sowell ER, Jones KL, Riley EP, Mattson SN. Effects of prenatal alcohol exposure and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder on adaptive functioning. Alcohol Clin Exp Res. 2014 May; 38(5):1439-47. View in: PubMed

Roussotte FF, Jahanshad N, Hibar DP, Sowell ER, Kohannim O, Barysheva M, Hansell NK, McMahon KL, de Zubicaray GI, Montgomery GW, Martin NG, Wright MJ, Toga AW, Jack CR, Weiner MW, Thompson PM. A commonly carried genetic variant in the delta opioid receptor gene, OPRD1, is associated with smaller regional brain volumes: Replication in elderly and young populations. Hum Brain Mapp. 2014 Apr; 35(4):1226-36. View in: PubMed

Houston SM, Lebel C, Katzir T, Manis FR, Kan E, Rodriguez GG, Sowell ER. Reading skill and structural brain development. Neuroreport. 2014 Mar 26; 25(5):347-52. View in: PubMed

Herting MM, Colby JB, Sowell ER, Nagel BJ. White matter connectivity and aerobic fitness in male adolescents. Dev Cogn Neurosci. 2014 Jan; 7:65-75. View in: PubMed

Akshoomoff N, Newman E, Thompson WK, McCabe C, Bloss CS, Chang L, Amaral DG, Casey BJ, Ernst TM, Frazier JA, Gruen JR, Kaufmann WE, Kenet T, Kennedy DN, Libiger O, Mostofsky S, Murray SS, Sowell ER, Schork N, Dale AM, Jernigan TL. The NIH Toolbox Cognition Battery: results from a large normative developmental sample (PING). Neuropsychology. 2014 Jan; 28(1):1-10. View in: PubMed

Houston SM, Herting MM, Sowell ER. The neurobiology of childhood structural brain development: conception through adulthood. Curr Top Behav Neurosci. 2014; 16:3-17. View in: PubMed

Eicher JD, Powers NR, Miller LL, Akshoomoff N, Amaral DG, Bloss CS, Libiger O, Schork NJ, Darst BF, Casey BJ, Chang L, Ernst T, Frazier J, Kaufmann WE, Keating B, Kenet T, Kennedy D, Mostofsky S, Murray SS, Sowell ER, Bartsch H, Kuperman JM, Brown TT, Hagler DJ, Dale AM, Jernigan TL, St Pourcain B, Davey Smith G, Ring SM, Gruen JR. Genome-wide association study of shared components of reading disability and language impairment. Genes Brain Behav. 2013 Nov; 12(8):792-801. View in: PubMed

Glass L, Ware AL, Crocker N, Deweese BN, Coles CD, Kable JA, May PA, Kalberg WO, Sowell ER, Jones KL, Riley EP, Mattson SN. Neuropsychological deficits associated with heavy prenatal alcohol exposure are not exacerbated by ADHD. Neuropsychology. 2013 Nov; 27(6):713-24. View in: PubMed

Lebel C, Warner T, Colby J, Soderberg L, Roussotte F, Behnke M, Davis Eyler F, Sowell ER. White matter microstructure abnormalities and executive function in adolescents with prenatal cocaine exposure. Psychiatry Res. 2013 Aug 30; 213(2):161-8. View in: PubMed

Mattson SN, Roesch SC, Glass L, Deweese BN, Coles CD, Kable JA, May PA, Kalberg WO, Sowell ER, Adnams CM, Jones KL, Riley EP. Further development of a neurobehavioral profile of fetal alcohol spectrum disorders. Alcohol Clin Exp Res. 2013 Mar; 37(3):517-28. View in: PubMed

Ware AL, O'Brien JW, Crocker N, Deweese BN, Roesch SC, Coles CD, Kable JA, May PA, Kalberg WO, Sowell ER, Jones KL, Riley EP, Mattson SN. The effects of prenatal alcohol exposure and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder on psychopathology and behavior. Alcohol Clin Exp Res. 2013 Mar; 37(3):507-16. View in: PubMed

Graham DM, Crocker N, Deweese BN, Roesch SC, Coles CD, Kable JA, May PA, Kalberg WO, Sowell ER, Jones KL, Riley EP, Mattson SN. Prenatal alcohol exposure, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, and sluggish cognitive tempo. Alcohol Clin Exp Res. 2013 Jan; 37 Suppl 1:E338-46. View in: PubMed

Colby JB, Smith L, O'Connor MJ, Bookheimer SY, Van Horn JD, Sowell ER. White matter microstructural alterations in children with prenatal methamphetamine/polydrug exposure. Psychiatry Res. 2012 Nov 30; 204(2-3):140-8. View in: PubMed

Fjell AM, Walhovd KB, Brown TT, Kuperman JM, Chung Y, Hagler DJ, Venkatraman V, Roddey JC, Erhart M, McCabe C, Akshoomoff N, Amaral DG, Bloss CS, Libiger O, Darst BF, Schork NJ, Casey BJ, Chang L, Ernst TM, Gruen JR, Kaufmann WE, Kenet T, Frazier J, Murray SS, Sowell ER, van Zijl P, Mostofsky S, Jernigan TL, Dale AM. Multimodal imaging of the self-regulating developing brain. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2012 Nov 27; 109(48):19620-5. View in: PubMed

Lebel C, Mattson SN, Riley EP, Jones KL, Adnams CM, May PA, Bookheimer SY, O'Connor MJ, Narr KL, Kan E, Abaryan Z, Sowell ER. A longitudinal study of the long-term consequences of drinking during pregnancy: heavy in utero alcohol exposure disrupts the normal processes of brain development. J Neurosci. 2012 Oct 31; 32(44):15243-51. View in: PubMed

Brown TT, Kuperman JM, Chung Y, Erhart M, McCabe C, Hagler DJ, Venkatraman VK, Akshoomoff N, Amaral DG, Bloss CS, Casey BJ, Chang L, Ernst TM, Frazier JA, Gruen JR, Kaufmann WE, Kenet T, Kennedy DN, Murray SS, Sowell ER, Jernigan TL, Dale AM. Neuroanatomical assessment of biological maturity. Curr Biol. 2012 Sep 25; 22(18):1693-8. View in: PubMed

Ware AL, Crocker N, O'Brien JW, Deweese BN, Roesch SC, Coles CD, Kable JA, May PA, Kalberg WO, Sowell ER, Jones KL, Riley EP, Mattson SN. Executive function predicts adaptive behavior in children with histories of heavy prenatal alcohol exposure and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. Alcohol Clin Exp Res. 2012 Aug; 36(8):1431-41. View in: PubMed

Noble KG, Houston SM, Kan E, Sowell ER. Neural correlates of socioeconomic status in the developing human brain. Dev Sci. 2012 Jul; 15(4):516-27. View in: PubMed

Sowell ER, Bookheimer SY. Promise for finding brain biomarkers among infants at high familial risk for developing autism spectrum disorders. Am J Psychiatry. 2012 Jun; 169(6):551-3. View in: PubMed

Yang Y, Roussotte F, Kan E, Sulik KK, Mattson SN, Riley EP, Jones KL, Adnams CM, May PA, O'Connor MJ, Narr KL, Sowell ER. Abnormal cortical thickness alterations in fetal alcohol spectrum disorders and their relationships with facial dysmorphology. Cereb Cortex. 2012 May; 22(5):1170-9. View in: PubMed

Yang Y, Phillips OR, Kan E, Sulik KK, Mattson SN, Riley EP, Jones KL, Adnams CM, May PA, O'Connor MJ, Narr KL, Sowell ER. Callosal thickness reductions relate to facial dysmorphology in fetal alcohol spectrum disorders. Alcohol Clin Exp Res. 2012 May; 36(5):798-806. View in: PubMed

Roussotte FF, Sulik KK, Mattson SN, Riley EP, Jones KL, Adnams CM, May PA, O'Connor MJ, Narr KL, Sowell ER. Regional brain volume reductions relate to facial dysmorphology and neurocognitive function in fetal alcohol spectrum disorders. Hum Brain Mapp. 2012 Apr; 33(4):920-37. View in: PubMed

Bakken TE, Roddey JC, Djurovic S, Akshoomoff N, Amaral DG, Bloss CS, Casey BJ, Chang L, Ernst TM, Gruen JR, Jernigan TL, Kaufmann WE, Kenet T, Kennedy DN, Kuperman JM, Murray SS, Sowell ER, Rimol LM, Mattingsdal M, Melle I, Agartz I, Andreassen OA, Schork NJ, Dale AM. Association of common genetic variants in GPCPD1 with scaling of visual cortical surface area in humans. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2012 Mar 6; 109(10):3985-90. View in: PubMed

Colby JB, Soderberg L, Lebel C, Dinov ID, Thompson PM, Sowell ER. Along-tract statistics allow for enhanced tractography analysis. Neuroimage. 2012 Feb 15; 59(4):3227-42. View in: PubMed

Roussotte FF, Rudie JD, Smith L, O'Connor MJ, Bookheimer SY, Narr KL, Sowell ER. Frontostriatal connectivity in children during working memory and the effects of prenatal methamphetamine, alcohol, and polydrug exposure. Dev Neurosci. 2012; 34(1):43-57. View in: PubMed

Roussotte F, Soderberg L, Warner T, Narr K, Lebel C, Behnke M, Davis-Eyler F, Sowell E. Adolescents with prenatal cocaine exposure show subtle alterations in striatal surface morphology and frontal cortical volumes. J Neurodev Disord. 2012; 4(1):22. View in: PubMed

Bramen JE, Hranilovich JA, Dahl RE, Chen J, Rosso C, Forbes EE, Dinov ID, Worthman CM, Sowell ER. Sex matters during adolescence: testosterone-related cortical thickness maturation differs between boys and girls. PLoS One. 2012; 7(3):e33850. View in: PubMed

Welcome SE, Chiarello C, Thompson PM, Sowell ER. Reading skill is related to individual differences in brain structure in college students. Hum Brain Mapp. 2011 Aug; 32(8):1194-205. View in: PubMed

Nuñez SC, Dapretto M, Katzir T, Starr A, Bramen J, Kan E, Bookheimer S, Sowell ER. fMRI of syntactic processing in typically developing children: structural correlates in the inferior frontal gyrus. Dev Cogn Neurosci. 2011 Jul; 1(3):313-23. View in: PubMed

Lebel C, Roussotte F, Sowell ER. Imaging the impact of prenatal alcohol exposure on the structure of the developing human brain. Neuropsychol Rev. 2011 Jun; 21(2):102-18. View in: PubMed

Bramen JE, Hranilovich JA, Dahl RE, Forbes EE, Chen J, Toga AW, Dinov ID, Worthman CM, Sowell ER. Puberty influences medial temporal lobe and cortical gray matter maturation differently in boys than girls matched for sexual maturity. Cereb Cortex. 2011 Mar; 21(3):636-46. View in: PubMed

Roussotte FF, Bramen JE, Nunez SC, Quandt LC, Smith L, O'Connor MJ, Bookheimer SY, Sowell ER. Abnormal brain activation during working memory in children with prenatal exposure to drugs of abuse: the effects of methamphetamine, alcohol, and polydrug exposure. Neuroimage. 2011 Feb 14; 54(4):3067-75. View in: PubMed

Colby JB, Van Horn JD, Sowell ER. Quantitative in vivo evidence for broad regional gradients in the timing of white matter maturation during adolescence. Neuroimage. 2011 Jan 1; 54(1):25-31. View in: PubMed

Nunez CC, Roussotte F, Sowell ER. Focus on: structural and functional brain abnormalities in fetal alcohol spectrum disorders. Alcohol Res Health. 2011; 34(1):121-31. View in: PubMed

Mattson SN, Foroud T, Sowell ER, Jones KL, Coles CD, Fagerlund A, Autti-Rämö I, May PA, Adnams CM, Konovalova V, Wetherill L, Arenson AD, Barnett WK, Riley EP. Collaborative initiative on fetal alcohol spectrum disorders: methodology of clinical projects. Alcohol. 2010 Nov-Dec; 44(7-8):635-41. View in: PubMed

Sowell ER, Leow AD, Bookheimer SY, Smith LM, O'Connor MJ, Kan E, Rosso C, Houston S, Dinov ID, Thompson PM. Differentiating prenatal exposure to methamphetamine and alcohol versus alcohol and not methamphetamine using tensor-based brain morphometry and discriminant analysis. J Neurosci. 2010 Mar 17; 30(11):3876-85. View in: PubMed

Lu LH, Dapretto M, O'Hare ED, Kan E, McCourt ST, Thompson PM, Toga AW, Bookheimer SY, Sowell ER. Relationships between brain activation and brain structure in normally developing children. Cereb Cortex. 2009 Nov; 19(11):2595-604. View in: PubMed

O'Hare ED, Lu LH, Houston SM, Bookheimer SY, Mattson SN, O'Connor MJ, Sowell ER. Altered frontal-parietal functioning during verbal working memory in children and adolescents with heavy prenatal alcohol exposure. Hum Brain Mapp. 2009 Oct; 30(10):3200-8. View in: PubMed

Losin EA, Rivera SM, O'Hare ED, Sowell ER, Pinter JD. Abnormal fMRI activation pattern during story listening in individuals with Down syndrome. Am J Intellect Dev Disabil. 2009 Sep; 114(5):369-80. View in: PubMed

Lu LH, Johnson A, O'Hare ED, Bookheimer SY, Smith LM, O'Connor MJ, Sowell ER. Effects of prenatal methamphetamine exposure on verbal memory revealed with functional magnetic resonance imaging. J Dev Behav Pediatr. 2009 Jun; 30(3):185-92. View in: PubMed

Shattuck DW, Joshi AA, Pantazis D, Kan E, Dutton RA, Sowell ER, Thompson PM, Toga AW, Leahy RM. Semi-automated method for delineation of landmarks on models of the cerebral cortex. J Neurosci Methods. 2009 Apr 15; 178(2):385-92. View in: PubMed

O'Hare ED, Lu LH, Houston SM, Bookheimer SY, Sowell ER. Neurodevelopmental changes in verbal working memory load-dependency: an fMRI investigation. Neuroimage. 2008 Oct 1; 42(4):1678-85. View in: PubMed

Sowell ER, Kan E, Yoshii J, Thompson PM, Bansal R, Xu D, Toga AW, Peterson BS. Thinning of sensorimotor cortices in children with Tourette syndrome. Nat Neurosci. 2008 Jun; 11(6):637-9. View in: PubMed

Sowell ER, Johnson A, Kan E, Lu LH, Van Horn JD, Toga AW, O'Connor MJ, Bookheimer SY. Mapping white matter integrity and neurobehavioral correlates in children with fetal alcohol spectrum disorders. J Neurosci. 2008 Feb 6; 28(6):1313-9. View in: PubMed

Sowell ER, Mattson SN, Kan E, Thompson PM, Riley EP, Toga AW. Abnormal cortical thickness and brain-behavior correlation patterns in individuals with heavy prenatal alcohol exposure. Cereb Cortex. 2008 Jan; 18(1):136-44. View in: PubMed

Sowell ER, Peterson BS, Kan E, Woods RP, Yoshii J, Bansal R, Xu D, Zhu H, Thompson PM, Toga AW. Sex differences in cortical thickness mapped in 176 healthy individuals between 7 and 87 years of age. Cereb Cortex. 2007 Jul; 17(7):1550-60. View in: PubMed

Sowell ER, Lu LH, O'Hare ED, McCourt ST, Mattson SN, O'Connor MJ, Bookheimer SY. Functional magnetic resonance imaging of verbal learning in children with heavy prenatal alcohol exposure. Neuroreport. 2007 May 7; 18(7):635-9. View in: PubMed

Thompson PM, Hayashi KM, Dutton RA, Chiang MC, Leow AD, Sowell ER, De Zubicaray G, Becker JT, Lopez OL, Aizenstein HJ, Toga AW. Tracking Alzheimer's disease. Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2007 Feb; 1097:183-214. View in: PubMed

Toga AW, Thompson PM, Sowell ER. Mapping brain maturation. Trends Neurosci. 2006 Mar; 29(3):148-59. View in: PubMed

Bookheimer SY, Sowell ER. Brain imaging in FAS: commentary on the article by Malisza et al. Pediatr Res. 2005 Dec; 58(6):1148-9. View in: PubMed

O'Hare ED, Kan E, Yoshii J, Mattson SN, Riley EP, Thompson PM, Toga AW, Sowell ER. Mapping cerebellar vermal morphology and cognitive correlates in prenatal alcohol exposure. Neuroreport. 2005 Aug 22; 16(12):1285-90. View in: PubMed

Thompson PM, Sowell ER, Gogtay N, Giedd JN, Vidal CN, Hayashi KM, Leow A, Nicolson R, Rapoport JL, Toga AW. Structural MRI and brain development. Int Rev Neurobiol. 2005; 67:285-323. View in: PubMed

Sowell ER, Thompson PM, Leonard CM, Welcome SE, Kan E, Toga AW. Longitudinal mapping of cortical thickness and brain growth in normal children. J Neurosci. 2004 Sep 22; 24(38):8223-31. View in: PubMed

Sowell ER, Thompson PM, Toga AW. Mapping changes in the human cortex throughout the span of life. Neuroscientist. 2004 Aug; 10(4):372-92. View in: PubMed

Riley EP, McGee CL, Sowell ER. Teratogenic effects of alcohol: a decade of brain imaging. Am J Med Genet C Semin Med Genet. 2004 May 15; 127C(1):35-41. View in: PubMed

Ballmaier M, Sowell ER, Thompson PM, Kumar A, Narr KL, Lavretsky H, Welcome SE, DeLuca H, Toga AW. Mapping brain size and cortical gray matter changes in elderly depression. Biol Psychiatry. 2004 Feb 15; 55(4):382-9. View in: PubMed

Thompson PM, Hayashi KM, Sowell ER, Gogtay N, Giedd JN, Rapoport JL, de Zubicaray GI, Janke AL, Rose SE, Semple J, Doddrell DM, Wang Y, van Erp TG, Cannon TD, Toga AW. Mapping cortical change in Alzheimer's disease, brain development, and schizophrenia. Neuroimage. 2004; 23 Suppl 1:S2-18. View in: PubMed

Ballmaier M, Toga AW, Blanton RE, Sowell ER, Lavretsky H, Peterson J, Pham D, Kumar A. Anterior cingulate, gyrus rectus, and orbitofrontal abnormalities in elderly depressed patients: an MRI-based parcellation of the prefrontal cortex. Am J Psychiatry. 2004 Jan; 161(1):99-108. View in: PubMed

Narr KL, Sharma T, Woods RP, Thompson PM, Sowell ER, Rex D, Kim S, Asuncion D, Jang S, Mazziotta J, Toga AW. Increases in regional subarachnoid CSF without apparent cortical gray matter deficits in schizophrenia: modulating effects of sex and age. Am J Psychiatry. 2003 Dec; 160(12):2169-80. View in: PubMed

Sowell ER, Thompson PM, Welcome SE, Henkenius AL, Toga AW, Peterson BS. Cortical abnormalities in children and adolescents with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder. Lancet. 2003 Nov 22; 362(9397):1699-707. View in: PubMed

Sowell ER, Peterson BS, Thompson PM, Welcome SE, Henkenius AL, Toga AW. Mapping cortical change across the human life span. Nat Neurosci. 2003 Mar; 6(3):309-15. View in: PubMed

Sowell ER, Thompson PM, Peterson BS, Mattson SN, Welcome SE, Henkenius AL, Riley EP, Jernigan TL, Toga AW. Mapping cortical gray matter asymmetry patterns in adolescents with heavy prenatal alcohol exposure. Neuroimage. 2002 Dec; 17(4):1807-19. View in: PubMed

Sowell ER, Thompson PM, Mattson SN, Tessner KD, Jernigan TL, Riley EP, Toga AW. Regional brain shape abnormalities persist into adolescence after heavy prenatal alcohol exposure. Cereb Cortex. 2002 Aug; 12(8):856-65. View in: PubMed

Sowell ER, Thompson PM, Rex D, Kornsand D, Tessner KD, Jernigan TL, Toga AW. Mapping sulcal pattern asymmetry and local cortical surface gray matter distribution in vivo: maturation in perisylvian cortices. Cereb Cortex. 2002 Jan; 12(1):17-26. View in: PubMed

Sowell ER, Trauner DA, Gamst A, Jernigan TL. Development of cortical and subcortical brain structures in childhood and adolescence: a structural MRI study. Dev Med Child Neurol. 2002 Jan; 44(1):4-16. View in: PubMed

Sowell ER, Thompson PM, Tessner KD, Toga AW. Mapping continued brain growth and gray matter density reduction in dorsal frontal cortex: Inverse relationships during postadolescent brain maturation. J Neurosci. 2001 Nov 15; 21(22):8819-29. View in: PubMed

Sowell ER, Mattson SN, Thompson PM, Jernigan TL, Riley EP, Toga AW. Mapping callosal morphology and cognitive correlates: effects of heavy prenatal alcohol exposure. Neurology. 2001 Jul 24; 57(2):235-44. View in: PubMed

Sowell ER, Thompson PM, Mattson SN, Tessner KD, Jernigan TL, Riley EP, Toga AW. Voxel-based morphometric analyses of the brain in children and adolescents prenatally exposed to alcohol. Neuroreport. 2001 Mar 5; 12(3):515-23. View in: PubMed

Sowell ER, Delis D, Stiles J, Jernigan TL. Improved memory functioning and frontal lobe maturation between childhood and adolescence: a structural MRI study. J Int Neuropsychol Soc. 2001 Mar; 7(3):312-22. View in: PubMed

Sowell ER, Levitt J, Thompson PM, Holmes CJ, Blanton RE, Kornsand DS, Caplan R, McCracken J, Asarnow R, Toga AW. Brain abnormalities in early-onset schizophrenia spectrum disorder observed with statistical parametric mapping of structural magnetic resonance images. Am J Psychiatry. 2000 Sep; 157(9):1475-84. View in: PubMed

Sowell ER, Toga AW, Asarnow R. Brain abnormalities observed in childhood-onset schizophrenia: a review of the structural magnetic resonance imaging literature. Ment Retard Dev Disabil Res Rev. 2000; 6(3):180-5. View in: PubMed

Sowell ER, Thompson PM, Holmes CJ, Jernigan TL, Toga AW. In vivo evidence for post-adolescent brain maturation in frontal and striatal regions. Nat Neurosci. 1999 Oct; 2(10):859-61. View in: PubMed

Sowell ER, Thompson PM, Holmes CJ, Batth R, Jernigan TL, Toga AW. Localizing age-related changes in brain structure between childhood and adolescence using statistical parametric mapping. Neuroimage. 1999 Jun; 9(6 Pt 1):587-97. View in: PubMed

Mattson SN, Riley EP, Sowell ER, Jernigan TL, Sobel DF, Jones KL. A decrease in the size of the basal ganglia in children with fetal alcohol syndrome. Alcohol Clin Exp Res. 1996 Sep; 20(6):1088-93. View in: PubMed

Sowell ER, Jernigan TL, Mattson SN, Riley EP, Sobel DF, Jones KL. Abnormal development of the cerebellar vermis in children prenatally exposed to alcohol: size reduction in lobules I-V. Alcohol Clin Exp Res. 1996 Feb; 20(1):31-4. View in: PubMed

Riley EP, Mattson SN, Sowell ER, Jernigan TL, Sobel DF, Jones KL. Abnormalities of the corpus callosum in children prenatally exposed to alcohol. Alcohol Clin Exp Res. 1995 Oct; 19(5):1198-202. View in: PubMed

Jernigan TL, Archibald SL, Berhow MT, Sowell ER, Foster DS, Hesselink JR. Cerebral structure on MRI, Part I: Localization of age-related changes. Biol Psychiatry. 1991 Jan 1; 29(1):55-67. View in: PubMed

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