Homogenizer Pressure: When to Use Low Pressure & When to Use High Pressure

Posted by Tal Shechter on Nov 28, 2016 12:30:00 PM

homogenization pressureHomogenization, the process of converting two immiscible liquids into a thoroughly mixed dispersion, is an important manufacturing process step utilized in various industries, including pharmaceutical, biotech, cosmetic, food, and chemical.

With the wide variety of homogenizers available on the market, selecting the right homogenizer for the task at hand is a very important (and often daunting) process. High pressure and low pressure homogenizers exist in today’s market, and although high pressure homogenizers make up a large proportion of available homogenizers, low pressure homogenizers play a similarly important role in certain manufacturing industries. Here we will break down and analyze the differences in low pressure versus high pressure homogenizers, and when each type should be utilized.

While both high pressure and low pressure homogenizers accomplish the same end-goal of reducing particle size (also known as micronization), they function in somewhat different ways. Low pressure homogenizers, popular in the food and beverage industry, contain a larger flow valve than their high pressure counterparts, which increases fluid velocity and results in a lower overall pressure. Low pressure homogenizers are often used in the manufacture of soy fortified products, yogurt, milk powders, processed cheese, ice cream, juice based products, and flavored milk products. In relatively recent times, low pressure homogenizers have also been used in the treatment of waste water; sewage treatment plants often use low pressure homogenizers to utilize previously-discarded sewage sludge and other environmental pollutants.

Like low pressure homogenizers, high pressure homogenizers are also used in a growing number of industries, and offer consistent, repeatable, fast results with particle size reduction as well as the creation of emulsions and dispersions.

BEE International offers a number of high pressure homogenizers, suitable for laboratory, pilot plant, or industrial use.

BEE International offers the following laboratory homogenizers for purchase:

These laboratory homogenizers offer a great deal of flexibility with small and large scale production needs, and offer the following benefits:

  • 100% guaranteed scalability of results
  • Easy cleaning and maintenance with no disassembly required
  • PLC control with digital display
  • Dual Feed capabilities
  • CE compliant
  • Lifetime training for new employees and students

In addition, BEE International offers a variety of homogenizers suitable for pilot plant and industrial use:

These high pressure homogenizers offer the highest levels of process controls and automation, as well as compliance with CFR 21 part 11 requirements. Additional benefits include:

  • Dynamic visual schematics indicating system parameters and component status
  • Security modes and authorizations
  • SCADA compliance
  • Sanitary design and features suitable for a number of industries, including pharmaceutical
  • Integration with plant controls network data gathering

For more information on our available homogenizers, as well as additional information on how our high pressure homogenizers can meet your company’s needs, please contact us.

For more information on how to achieve efficient and consistent particle size reduction results, download our FREE eBook:

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High Pressure Homogenizer: What to Look for When Deciding on a Model

Posted by David Shechter on Nov 3, 2016 12:30:00 PM

high pressure homogenizerCongratulations on choosing a high pressure homogenizer for your particle size reduction or cell lysis needs! We’ve created the following checklist to help you choose the correct model for your needs:

  • Production or Research & Development?

Whether you need a high pressure homogenizer for R&D experimentation or large production volumes, BEE International has the right equipment for you. Our Nano DeBEE Laboratory Homogenizer is ideal for laboratory use for a broad range of applications including cell disruption, particle size reduction, nano/micro emulsions and dispersions. Our industrial homogenizers provide high yield cell rupture and efficient particle size reduction in fewer passes. Click here to view all of our high pressure homogenizer products.

  • Is it a good fit for my product?

When choosing a high pressure homogenizer, always ensure that it is the right fit for your particular product and manufacturing needs. Take into account the volumes that you will be processing, the frequency of your production runs, and the regulatory requirements associated with manufacturing your product e.g. pasteurization or SCADA.

  • Easy to clean and maintain?

Regulations require certain products to be manufactured on equipment with CIP capabilities. We understand these rigorous industry standards and customer requirements; therefore our pilot plant and industrial homogenizers are all CIP. Contact us to schedule a professional service for your unit or inquire about our annual Preventive Maintenance Agreements.

  • A reliable and specialized company?

BEE International is a reputable company with homogenizers operating in commercial and academic facilities across the globe. We are knowledgeable and experienced in every aspect of high energy mixing in terms of cell lysis and particle size reduction, and we want to share that knowledge and experience with you. We provide training upon or before installation, and also offer additional training at any time further down the line.

  • After-sales support?

We know that a high pressure homogenizer is an expensive piece of equipment and that you want to get your money’s worth out of it. Our technical support team are standing by to help you troubleshoot any small issues or answer your operational questions.

BEE International is your partner in developing new products and improving your existing ones. Click here to learn more about our application support and sample testing program. 

For more information on particle size reduction and how to achieve efficient and consistent results, download our FREE eBook:

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Ultrasonic Homogenizers vs. High Pressure Homogenizers

Posted by David Shechter on Oct 13, 2016 12:30:00 PM

high pressure homogenizersUltrasonic homogenizers, or sonicators, are used in cell lysis and particle size reduction applications. This equipment uses pulsed, high frequency sound waves to disrupt particles through a phenomenon called cavitation. Cavitation occurs when a rapid pressure change causes “liquid-free zones” or cavities in a liquid. As these cavities collapse, shock waves are generated throughout the liquid, which causes the cells or large particles to rupture.

Uses and Shortcomings of Ultrasonic Homogenizers

Ultrasonic homogenizers are commonly used for processing small samples that are in suspension and don’t require any pre-grinding or cutting. They can be used for cell lysis, emulsion preparation, for mixing and dissolving purposes, and to accelerate chemical reactions.

Limitations of ultrasonic homogenizers include the generation of heat, which may be detrimental to temperature-sensitive samples. Sonicators can also shear DNA, which may or may not be desirable, depending on your application.

Ultrasonic homogenizers make a very loud, “hissing” noise and the appropriate personal protective equipment must be worn by operators and lab technicians.

Ultrasonic homogenizers do not lyse all cells equally. The cell walls of plant cells are far more resistant to sonication than cell membranes. Lastly, there is a possibility of cross contamination, as the sonicator probe comes into direct contact with the samples.

DeBEE High Pressure Homogenizers: Ideal Fluid Processing for Small and Large Volumes

Our High Pressure Homogenizers are the most efficient fluid processing equipment for particle size reduction and cell lysis. BEE International’s proprietary homogenizing cell technology drives the fluid at ultra high pressure through a small nozzle, causing cavitation. The product becomes a high velocity jet stream and flows through an absorption cell. This absorption cell contains alternating small and large orifices that create turbulence and cause fluid-on-fluid impact and shear. Process intensity is adjustable from 2,000 - 45,000 psi / 150 - 3100 bar.

DeBEE high pressure homogenizers make use of cavitation, but they also use the forces of shear and impact. Particle disruption is gentle but effective, allowing for better results in fewer passes. Best of all, our results are consistently scalable up to manufacturing volumes.

Download our free eBook “7 Key Factors to Consider When Choosing a Cell Lysis Method” to learn more about selecting the right particle size reduction or cell lysis equipment for your application:

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Emulsion Products That Can Benefit from High Pressure Homogenization

Posted by Deb Shechter on Oct 11, 2016 12:30:00 PM

Emulsions are a common application in the cosmetic and pharmaceutical industries to make creams, lotions, hair conditioners, make up and many other products. For more information on emulsions in the food industry, read an earlier blog here.

An emulsion is a mixture of two immiscible liquids like oil and water. Tiny droplets of the first liquid are dispersed throughout the second liquid. With an oil in water emulsion, the oil droplets are dispersed in the water phase and the product will have a lighter feel e.g. in moisturizing lotions or day creams.

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In the case of a water in oil emulsion, the water droplets are dispersed in an oil phase and the product will have a heavier, greasier feel e.g. in night creams or sunscreens. Water and silicone emulsions are another common emulsion type in cosmetic products.  

Emulsion products are also frequently used in the pharmaceutical industry. They are used to make medicines more palatable, for injectables, and for improving the visual and textural properties of medicated creams and ointments.

High Pressure Homogenization for Improved Emulsions

DeBEE high pressure homogenizers produce a homogenous mix of smaller, more uniform particles. Our innovative technology offers unique benefits for producing nano / micro emulsions. Our homogenizers can achieve stable emulsions with droplet sizes below 100nm. Particle size is so small and uniform that emulsions can become clear. Product shelf life is extended, and efficacy is increased.

Our equipment produces unprecedented results for your emulsion products by allowing you to optimize the mixing process to better achieve your desired product characteristics. This is accomplished by varying the cavitation, shear and impact forces applied to a formulation. Our high pressure homogenizers boast a sanitary design and features like validation procedures and documentation, data gathering, SCADA and automated CIP.

DeBEE High Pressure Homogenizers for Every Stage of Product Development

Our laboratory homogenizers are compact, easy to use units with small minimum sample sizes and many experimentation options with scalable results. Our pilot plant equipment gives reliable results and guaranteed scale-up, and our industrial homogenizers yield consistent results in fewer passes.

Contact us today for more information and to hear about our free sample testing program.

Are you in the Pharmaceutical Industry? For more tips on improving your emulsion products, download our FREE eBook, "Advantages of BEE Homogenizers for the Pharmaceutical Industry":

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5 Reasons Why You Need a High Pressure Homogenizer in Your Biotechnology Research Laboratory

Posted by Tal Shechter on Sep 12, 2016 12:30:00 PM

high pressure homogenizerBiotechnology is healing, fueling and feeding the world. Groundbreaking innovations in the fields of medicine, energy and food production are changing the way that we live. In the laboratory, biotechnology harnesses cellular and biomolecular processes to develop technologies and products that help improve our lives and the health of our planet.

1. High Yield Cell Lysis

DeBEE Laboratory High Pressure Homogenizers are ideal for rupturing a variety of different cell types, including E. coli, yeast, mammalian tissue, bacteria, algae, fungi and insect cells. We know that while some cells need just a gentle pressure for rupture, others (like yeast or fungi) are more challenging. With our biotechnology high pressure homogenizers, the end result is a higher yield in a shorter time.

2. Efficient and Uniform Particle Size Reduction

Our biotechnology high pressure homogenizers are the most efficient fluid processing equipment available for particle size reduction for micro and nano emulsions and dispersions.  Our equipment can produce nanoparticles of around or below 100 nm.

3. Innovation with Controlled Experimentation

Innovation and experimentation go hand-in-hand, and for this reason, our unique modular technology is designed for process flexibility. You are able to optimize the pressure for each different application or cell type (without damaging the intracellular materials).

Our biotechnology high pressure homogenizers improve results in the fields of Bio-pharmacy, Nano-biotechnology, Bio-agriculture, Industrial-biotechnology and Bio-environment. Scientists are able to create more effective medicines, modify microorganisms to produce vaccines and antibiotics, synthesize new chemicals and develop alternative biofuels that work to preserve our environment.

4. 100% Scalable Results

We know that laboratory results are meaningless unless they are repeatable on a larger scale. BEE International guarantees that all laboratory results are 100% scalable up to manufacturing volumes, allowing you to bring your innovations to the market.

5. Lifetime Training and Support

BEE International Applications and Service Group provides equipment training upon initial installation, as well as additional training at a later stage for any new operators. We provide free technical support via telephone or email, and our knowledgeable, responsive staff are here to ensure that you get the best use out of your new equipment.

We also offer application support, and would love to help in developing your new product or improving an existing one. Click here to learn more about our free, confidential sample testing service. Contact us today so that we canhelp you make sure you have the right equipment for your biotechnology research laboratory.

For more information on particle size reduction and how to achieve efficient and consistent results, download our FREE eBook:

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Particle Grinding vs High Pressure Homogenizing in the Pharmaceutical Industry

Posted by Tal Shechter on Aug 31, 2016 12:30:00 PM

high pressure homogenizingA 2013 article by Sushant et al. published in the International Research Journal of Pharmacy lays out the objectives of particle size reduction in pharmaceutics. Below, we have summarized the benefits of particle size reduction in drug manufacturing:

  • An increased surface area is more cost effective for manufacturers.
  • Drugs will have increased absorption and therapeutic effectiveness because as particle size decreases, the absorption rate increases.
  • Narrow size range distribution means solids and powders are easier to mix effectively.
  • Emulsions are stable with effective particle size reduction.
  • All pharmaceutical preparations meant for external application must be free of any sedimentation and gritty particles that may irritate the skin or eyes.
  • Pharmaceutical products look better due to improved physical appearance from particles mixing well.

Particle Grinder or High Pressure Homogenizer: Which One to Use?

Now that you know the benefits of particle size reduction, how can you achieve the best results? Let’s look into two of the most popular methods, using a particle grinder and using a high pressure homogenizer:

A particle grinder uses mechanical force to crush and grind larger solid particles into smaller solid particles. This process is also known as milling, and is often an important initial step in drug production. Examples of particle grinders include roller mills, which use cylindrical rollers to grind materials; and hammer mills, which crush materials by repeated hammer impacts.

A high pressure homogenizer also works to reduce particle size, but in fluids. It works by forcing liquid at high pressure through a very narrow nozzle. Through the application of several forces (cavitation, turbulence, impact and shear), the liquid that flows out of the high pressure homogenizer now has a reduced and more uniform particle size.

Therefore, your choice will depend on your final product as well as the particular step in the process. A particle grinder is ideal for creating fine powders, while a high pressure homogenizer processes fluids. You may well use both types of equipment in the manufacture of a drug.

DeBEE High Pressure Homogenizers

Homogenizers are the most efficient fluid processing equipment for particle size reduction. Unlike a hammer mill that uses only one mechanical force (impact), BEE International’s patented technology utilizes ALL available mechanical forces.

From the R&D laboratory, through clinical trials and eventually to manufacturing, DeBEE high pressure homogenizers produce top quality end products including nano/micro emulsions and dispersions, lipids and suspensions for injectables, vaccines, targeted drug delivery, inhalants, time release, anesthetics and antibiotics.

We’re Here to Help

If you’re unsure, contact us for help in determining exactly what particle size reduction equipment is a fit for your product needs.

Want to learn more about how BEE International's range of high pressure homogenizers can benefit your pharmaceutical products? Download our free eBook “Advantages of BEE Homogenizers for the Pharmaceutical Industry”:

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How High Pressure Homogenizers Benefit Dispersions

Posted by Deb Shechter on Aug 29, 2016 12:30:00 PM

high pressure homogenizersDispersions occur when particles of one (solid) substance are scattered throughout another (liquid) substance. The solid particles are sometimes referred to as agglomerates or aggregates. Dispersions can be further categorized into solutions (homogeneous mixtures) or suspensions (heterogeneous mixtures). A colloid is a third type of dispersion that is somewhere in between a solution and a suspension.

The IUPAC definition of a colloidal dispersion is: A system in which particles of colloidal size of any nature (e.g. solid, liquid or gas) are dispersed in a continuous phase of a different composition (or state). The name “dispersed phase” for the particles should be used only if they have essentially the properties of a bulk phase of the same composition. A dispersion can be defined as a colloid if particle size is between 0.001 micrometer and 1 micrometer.

High Pressure Homogenizers in Manufacturing

Dispersions are used to produce thousands of products across many industries like the pharmaceutical industry (e.g. antacids or antioxidants), the food industry (e.g. ketchup or sports drinks) and the chemical industry (e.g. inks and dyes). Although dispersions are a very useful application, the production of dispersions is not without its challenges. Problems can include instability, agglomeration (clumping) and equipment clogging, inability to reduce particle size to meet requirements, and contamination caused by wear on the mixing equipment.

DeBEE High Pressure Homogenizers for your Dispersion Products

BEE International systems are designed to produce consistent dispersions with a tight distribution of smaller particles and to reduce agglomeration by consistently distributing surfactants. Our proprietary technology applies force with no grinding or mixing action. The energy is applied fluid-on-fluid, offering an exceptionally long life cycle of all parts.

Our flexible technology also addresses products with unique processing challenges such as pastes requiring fine particles, agglomeration difficulties, hard materials and products requiring a longer shelf life.

Visit our website to read more about the particular benefits of using a high pressure homogenizer in the pharmaceutical, chemical, biotech and food industries.

BENEFITS OF DEBEE HIGH PRESSURE HOMOGENIZATION

Product

Improved product quality

Longer shelf life

Increased bioavailability

Improved sensory characteristics like taste, texture and color

Improved nutritional value

Manufacturing

More efficient productivity due to fewer passes

Lower manufacturing costs due to fewer passes

Less clogging, maintenance and downtime


Are you in the pharmaceutical industry? Download our FREE eBook: “Advantages of BEE Homogenizers for the Pharmaceutical Industry” and discover how to improve your dispersion products and more!

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Homogenizers for Optimal Cell Lysis & Particle Size Reduction

Posted by Deb Shechter on Aug 26, 2016 12:30:00 PM

high pressure homogenizerHigh pressure homogenization is a mechanical process that works to reduce particle size or to lyse cells. Essentially, a liquid is forced at high pressure through a very narrow nozzle. The higher the amount of energy applied during the homogenization process, the smaller the particle size or the more complete the cell lysis.

Below, we’ll discuss the forces used to apply this energy; as well as the differences that set DeBEE high pressure homogenizers apart from the competition.

Our unique BEE International technology begins right at the product intake, which can be laminar and gentle, or turbulent for premixing. As the liquid enters the homogenizer nozzle, there is a sharp drop in pressure, causing cavitation. Cavitation occurs when a rapid pressure change causes “liquid-free zones” or cavities in a liquid. As these cavities collapse, shock waves are generated throughout the liquid, which causes the particles to break apart.

The liquid continues on into an absorption chamber which contains alternating small and large orifices, which creates turbulence and causes fluid-on-fluid impact and shear. As a result of the application of these forces (cavitation, turbulence, impact and shear), the liquid that now flows out of the homogenizer has a much smaller particle size than before.

The DeBEE Difference

The above process describes a basic high pressure homogenizer set up, but our DeBEE high pressure homogenizers offer several additional benefits:

  • Process Intensity and Duration: Our high pressure homogenizers can be configured with a reverse flow setup, where the high velocity liquid jet is made to reverse on itself and to exit near the nozzle, thus causing even more impact and fluid-on-fluid shear. The duration of the process can be controlled by the length and internal configuration of the absorption chamber. Process intensity is adjustable from 2000 - 45000 psi / 150 - 3100 bar.
  • Constant Pressure:  A constant processing pressure leads to a more uniform particle size. Our unique High Pressure Pumping System uses several hydraulically driven intensifier pumps for a constant, uninterrupted processing pressure. This pumping system also eliminates the possibility of contamination. Read more about it here.
  • Modular Technology: BEE International’s proprietary technology allows independent control of pressure, flow, cavitation, impact, shear, and process duration. This allows you to optimize cell lysis or particle size reduction and obtain the best possible results for your product.

Contact us today to request a quote or a demonstration and experience the DeBEE difference! For more information about particle size reduction and how to achieve efficient and consistent results, download our FREE eBook:

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3 Advantages of High Pressure Homogenizers for Drug Research & Development

Posted by David Shechter on Jul 29, 2016 12:30:00 PM

high pressure homogenizationFor the millions of people battling disease in America, medical innovation is what helps patients live longer, more active lives. Yet innovation begins far from the consumer shelf, as a basic idea developed in a small laboratory or office. When researchers decide to push forward with this idea, it enters the drug research and development (R&D) process, where its synthesis method is optimized. On comparison of the resulting experimental methods, one would see that a large proportion involve homogenization, specifically using high pressure. Keep reading to better understand the advantages of high pressure homogenization for R&D, and ultimately for disease prevention and treatment.

  1. Reduction of particle size to enhance chemical and physical qualities. So many of the pharmaceutical products we are exposed to are synthesized through particle size reduction- vaccines, vaccine adjuvants, nutraceuticals, and antibiotics are just a few of the more recognizable titles. Homogenizer technology is one of few that can achieve both small particle size and uniform consistency, which benefits products by increasing bioavailability and chemical stability, as well as enhancing physical appearance.
  2. Improved API delivery. The active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) contained within pharmaceutical products must be treated sensitively, as changes in factors like heat and pH can cause irreversible API delivery. Mixing processes using heat should therefore be avoided; high pressure homogenizers, in contrast, use force as opposed to heat, which preserves the API and increases its bioavailability. Another contributing factor is the ability of homogenizers to reduce particle size (as indicated above). Smaller particles are more easily digested, which also contributes to this better API distribution.
  3. Better scaling for drug development. The drug development process contains many hurdles, too high for most products in the R&D stage to overcome. However, for those products that do enter clinical trials and beyond, their success largely depends on the scalability of the equipment being used. While many mixing methods exist, the scalable homogenizer can increase cost savings, lower time requirements, and decrease the product’s likelihood of failure.

BEE International: High-Quality Pharmaceutical Homogenizers

As your potential product moves through the drug development process, it will need to prove its value in both safety and effectiveness to even get to the manufacturing stage of drug development; this can be accomplished by utilizing high quality equipment in the R&D phase, clinical trials, and again in the manufacturing phase.

BEE International Technology produces homogenizers that can yield a variety of relevant products, such as emulsions, suspensions, dispersions and lipids. Importantly, these products go on to make up the injectables, inhalants, anesthetics, and vaccinations that attain FDA approval for manufacturing. In addition, BEEI has extensive experience assisting its product users as they transition through the drug development process.

To learn more about how their homogenizers can optimize your drug’s chances of success, contact us today. 

For more information on homogenization, cell lysis, and how to choose the right method for you, download our FREE eBook: 

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Dairy Homogenization: From Start to Finish

Posted by David Shechter on Jun 2, 2016 12:30:00 PM

Dairy HomogenizationThe dairy industry is currently fraught with turmoil over how its milk is prepared; should it be homogenized or is it healthier without this treatment?. Some critics of milk homogenization argue that the small fat particles yielded in the process act as capsules for harmful substances that wouldn’t otherwise bypass the digestive system, and can also contribute to heart disease. Yet proponents of homogenization have demonstrated via multiple research studies that there is no difference in health outcome between people who consumed homogenized vs. unhomogenized milk. (1) With this controversy in mind, here we break down the process of milk homogenization, so that every consumer has a clear notion of what they are actually drinking.

  • Particle Size Reduction

Particle size reduction, one of the primary steps of the milk homogenization process, results in the formation of small fat droplets dispersed evenly throughout the mixture. This is typically accomplished with a high pressure homogenizer, which forces the raw milk through a narrow tube while force shears the particles down to a desired size.

  • Separation & Dispersion

Simple centrifugation separates the mixture into two separate phases of cream and milk, which can then be used separately or together. For instance, the cream can be used separately as a tasty ingredient in a variety of baked goods and desserts and the skim milk can be used in the production of cottage cheese, yogurt, and mashed potatoes, or simply as a food for your pets/animals. (2)

  • Remixing

Assuming that you are uninterested in the separate cream and skim milk components, the final step of milk homogenization requires the two phases to be remixed. The fat content of the desired product (e.g. skim, low-fat, or whole) will dictate the amount of cream added back into the mixture. While skim milk contains only 0.05% fat content, whole milk reintroduces much more cream to bring the fat content up to 3.25%. (3)

BEE International: Equipment to Support Dairy Production

As you either embark on, or continue along, the process of manufacturing milk and/or other dairy foods, your product’s success may depend on the equipment used to make it. From producing emulsions to using high pressure pasteurization as a milk preparation method, high pressure homogenizers will suit your needs. Its powerful mixing process and its cost/time effectiveness makes this machine preferable over others on the market. The homogenizer will shear fluid by forcing it through a restrictive valve, forming a an emulsion with decreased particle size.

BEE International Technology is trusted by lab managers and scientists around the world for their high-pressure homogenizers. We offer homogenizers that are both high-quality and reliable, and which can help your lab produce nano/micro emulsions, dispersions, and suspensions to be incorporated into your pharmaceutical cream.

Contact us to learn more about our products. For more information on particle size reduction and how to achieve efficient and consistent results, download our FREE eBook today: 

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