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Spineless cactus is a useful feed for various animal species in arid and semiarid regions due to its adaptability to dry and harsh soil, high efficiency of water use and carbohydrates storage. This meta-analysis was carried out to assess the effect of spineless cactus on animal performance, and develop and evaluate equations to predict dry matter intake (DMI) and average daily gain (ADG) in meat lambs. Equations for predicting DMI and ADG as a function of animal and diet characteristics were developed using data from eight experiments. The dataset was comprised of 40 treatment means from 289 meat lambs, in which cactus was included from 0 to 75% of the diet dry matter (DM). Accuracy and precision were evaluated by cross-validation using the mean square error of prediction (MSEP), which was decomposed into mean bias, systematic bias and random error; concordance correlation coefficient, which was decomposed into accuracy (Cb) and precision (ρ); and coefficient of determination (R2). In addition, the data set was used to evaluate the predicting accuracy and precision of the main lamb feeding systems (Agricultural and Food Research Council, Small Ruminant Nutritional System, National Research Council and Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique) and also two Brazilian studies. The DMI, CP intake (CPI), metabolizable energy (ME) intake and ADG increased when cactus was included up to 499 g/kg DM (P<0.001). In contrast, animals fed high levels of cactus (>500 g/kg DM) had a decreased DMI, CPI and NDF intake, but increased feed efficiency (P<0.001) and similar ADG compared with those without cactus addition. The DMI was positively correlated with initial BW, final BW, concentrate and ADG, while it was negatively correlated with cactus inclusion and ME of the diet. On other hand, ADG was positively correlated with DMI, initial and mean BW and concentrate, and it was negatively correlated with cactus inclusion. The two developed equations had high accuracy (Cb of 0.95 for DMI and 0.94 for ADG) and the random error of MSEP was 99% for both equations. The precision of both equations was moderate, with R2 values of 0.53 and 0.50 and ρ values of 0.73 and 0.71 for DMI and ADG, respectively. In conclusion, the developed equation to predict DMI had moderate precision and high accuracy, nonetheless, it was more efficient than those reported in the literature. The proposed equations can be a useful alternative to estimate intake and performance of lambs fed cactus.
Tetraspanins, such as CD81, can form lateral associations with each other and with other transmembrane proteins. These interactions may underlie CD81 functions in multiple cellular processes, such as adhesion, morphology, migration, and differentiation. Since CD81's role in neuronal cells’ migration has not been established, we here evaluated effects of CD81 on the migratory phenotype of SH-SY5Y neuroblastoma cells. CD81 was found enriched at SH-SY5Y cell's membrane, co-localizing with its interactor filamentous-actin (F-actin) in migratory relevant structures of the leading edge (filopodia, stress fibers, and adhesion sites). CD81 overexpression increased the number of cells with a migratory phenotype, in a potentially phosphatidylinositol 3 kinase (PI3K)–Ak strain transforming (AKT) mediated manner. Indeed, CD81 also co-localized with AKT, a CD81-interactor and actin remodeling agent, at the inner leaflet of the plasma membrane. Pharmacologic inhibition of PI3K, the canonical AKT activator, led both to a decrease in the acquisition of a migratory phenotype and to a redistribution of intracellular CD81 and F-actin into cytoplasmic agglomerates. These findings suggest that in neuronal-like cells CD81 bridges active AKT and actin, promoting the actin remodeling that leads to a motile cell morphology. Further studies on this CD81-mediated mechanism will improve our knowledge on important physiological and pathological processes such as cell migration and differentiation, and tumor metastasis.
Phosphorus (P) is an essential nutrient in livestock production, involved in most metabolic processes in the body, and with an impact on bone development and growth. Diet supplementation with P can improve productivity, but at excess levels the P utilization can be low, and the high P excretion will lead to environmental pollution (Tamminga, 2003). P supplementation also adds substantially to the cost of feed. Using the isotopic dilution technique (Vitti et al., 2000), we have studied the effect of different P levels in diet on P absorption and excretion in Brazilian sheep, and identified the level at which true P absorption saturates.
Salivary molecules, as glycine-rich proteins (GRPs), are essential to tick attachment and feeding on the host and are suggested to be involved in the host's immune system evasion, therefore representing natural candidates in the search for protective vaccine antigens. This work shows the molecular characterization of a GRP from Rhipicephalus microplus (RmGRP). The cDNA and putative amino acid sequences were analysed, as well as the transcription level in tick tissues/developmental stages, showing the highest levels of gene expression in 1-day-old larvae and salivary glands of fully engorged females. RmGRP gene silencing resulted in a lower hatching rate of larvae from treated females. In addition, recombinant RmGRP (rRmGRP) was recognized by sera from naturally and experimentally infested bovines, displaying considerable differences among the individuals tested. rRmGRP was recognized by anti-saliva and anti-salivary glands sera, while anti-rRmGRP serum recognized RmGRP in saliva and salivary glands, indicating its secretion into the host. The data collected indicate that RmGRP may present roles other than in the tick–host relationship, especially in embryo development. In addition, the high expression in adult females, antigenicity and presence of shared characteristics with other tick protective GRPs turns RmGRP a potential candidate to compose an anti-tick vaccine cocktail.
Urban slums provide suitable conditions for infestation by rats, which harbour and shed a wide diversity of zoonotic pathogens including helminths. We aimed to identify risk factors associated with the probability and intensity of infection of helminths of the digestive tract in an urban slum population of Rattus norvegicus. Among 299 rats, eleven species/groups of helminths were identified, of which Strongyloides sp., Nippostrongylus brasiliensis and, the human pathogen, Angiostrongylus cantonensis were the most frequent (97, 41 and 39%, respectively). Sex interactions highlighted behavioural differences between males and females, as eg males were more likely to be infected with N. brasiliensis where rat signs were present, and males presented more intense infections of Strongyloides sp. Moreover, rats in poor body condition had higher intensities of N. brasiliensis. We describe a high global richness of parasites in R. norvegicus, including five species known to cause disease in humans. Among these, A. cantonensis was found in high prevalence and it was ubiquitous in the study area – knowledge which is of public health importance. A variety of environmental, demographic and body condition variables were associated with helminth species infection of rats, suggesting a comparable variety of risk factors for humans.
Several studies have shown that maternal low-protein (LP) diet induces detrimental effects in cardiovascular system and oxidative stress in male animals. Additional studies suggested that female has lower incidence of cardiovascular disease. However until present data, the possible effects of estradiol on the undernutrition during gestational and lactation periods are not discussed. The present study was conducted to evaluate the effects of a maternal LP diet during gestational and lactation period on oxidative balance in the female rat hearts ventricles at two ages. Dams were fed with normal protein (NP) or a LP diet during the gestational and lactation period, and their female offspring were divided into age groups (22 or 122 days, corresponding to a low or high estrogen level) composing four experimental groups. Evaluating the nutritional effect showed an increase in oxidative stress biomarkers and decrease in enzymatic defense in LP-22D compared with NP-22D. In contrast, no changes were observed in malondialdehyde and carbonyls, but an increase in glutathione-S-transferase (GST) activity in the LP-122D compared with NP-122D. The global oxy-score in the LP-22D group indicated a predominance of oxidative damage when compared with NP-22D, while in LP-122D group the global oxy-score was restored to NP-122D levels. Evaluating the estradiol effect, our data show a significant decrease in oxidative stress with increase in CAT and GST activity, associated with increase in intracellular thiols. Our data suggest that in situation with low levels of estradiol, hypoproteic diet during gestation and lactation period has detrimental effects on heart, however when estradiol levels raise, the detrimental effects induced are mitigated.
The number of days of data required to accurately estimate usual nutrient intake of children is not well established. This study aims to calculate the variability and the number of days required to estimate usual nutrient intake in children aged 13–32 months. This cross-sectional study, which is part of the BRISA Project in São Luís, Maranhão, Brazil, involved 231 children from April 2011 to January 2013. Socio-economic and demographic data were collected using a questionnaire, and 3 non-consecutive days of food consumption were collected using a 24-h dietary recall (24HDR) survey. Intrapersonal and interpersonal variability and variance ratio (VR) were obtained for each nutrient using the Multiple Source Method® program (version 1.0.1). The number of days (d) needed was calculated using the formula proposed by Black et al. for different correlation coefficients (r) (i.e. 0·7, 0·8 or 0·9). For the vast majority of nutrients, intrapersonal and interpersonal variability values of <1 were observed, with even smaller intrapersonal variabilities, resulting in low VR (<1). More days were needed to estimate intakes of soluble fibre (12), insoluble fibre (11), total fibre (10), vitamin C (9) and PUFA (7), while fewer days were needed for energy, carbohydrate, SFA, Ca, Fe, P and Zn (all had 2 d for r 0·9). However, most nutrients required one, two or three 24HDR for r 0·7, 0·8 or 0·9.
The enzymatic activities of NTPDase and 5′nucleotidase are important to regulate the concentration of adenine nucleotides, known molecules involved in many physiological functions. Therefore, the objective of this study was to evaluate the activity of NTPDase and 5′nucleotidase in serum and liver tissue of rats infected by Fasciola hepatica. Rats were divided into two groups: uninfected control and infected. NTPDase activity for adenosine triphosphate (ATP) and ADP substrates in the liver was higher compared with the control group at 15 days post-infection (PI), while seric activity was lower. In addition, seric and hepatic samples did not show changes for 5′nucleotidase activity at this time. On the other hand, either NTPDase or 5′nucleotidase activities in liver homogenate and serum were higher at 87 days PI. Early in the infection, low NTPDase activity maintains an increase of ATP in the bloodstream in order to activate host immune response, while in hepatic tissue it decreases extracellular ATP to maintain a low inflammatory response in the tissue. As stated, higher NTPDase and 5′nucleotidase activities 87 days after infection in serum and tissue, probably results on an increased concentration of adenosine molecule which stimulates a Th2 immune response. Thus, it is possible to conclude that F. hepatica infections lead to different levels of nucleotide degradation when considering the two stages of infection studied, which influences the inflammatory and pathological processes developed by the purinergic system.
The 2013 multistate outbreaks contributed to the largest annual number of reported US cases of cyclosporiasis since 1997. In this paper we focus on investigations in Texas. We defined an outbreak-associated case as laboratory-confirmed cyclosporiasis in a person with illness onset between 1 June and 31 August 2013, with no history of international travel in the previous 14 days. Epidemiological, environmental, and traceback investigations were conducted. Of the 631 cases reported in the multistate outbreaks, Texas reported the greatest number of cases, 270 (43%). More than 70 clusters were identified in Texas, four of which were further investigated. One restaurant-associated cluster of 25 case-patients was selected for a case-control study. Consumption of cilantro was most strongly associated with illness on meal date-matched analysis (matched odds ratio 19·8, 95% confidence interval 4·0–∞). All case-patients in the other three clusters investigated also ate cilantro. Traceback investigations converged on three suppliers in Puebla, Mexico. Cilantro was the vehicle of infection in the four clusters investigated; the temporal association of these clusters with the large overall increase in cyclosporiasis cases in Texas suggests cilantro was the vehicle of infection for many other cases. However, the paucity of epidemiological and traceback information does not allow for a conclusive determination; moreover, molecular epidemiological tools for cyclosporiasis that could provide more definitive linkage between case clusters are needed.
The aim of this study was to investigate the activities of important enzymes involved in the phosphoryl transfer network (adenylate kinase and creatine kinase (CK)), lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), respiratory chain complexes and biomarkers of cardiac function in rat experimentally infected by Trypanosoma evansi. Rat heart samples were evaluated at 5 and 15 days post-infection (PI). At 5 day PI, there was an increase in LDH and CK activities, and a decrease in respiratory chain complexes II, IV and succinate dehydrogenase activities. In addition, on day 15 PI, a decrease in the respiratory chain complex IV activity was observed. Biomarkers of cardiac function were higher in infected animals on days 5 and 15 PI. Considering the importance of the energy metabolism for heart function, it is possible that the changes in the enzymatic activities involved in the cardiac phosphotransfer network and the decrease in respiratory chain might be involved partially in the role of biomarkers of cardiac function of T. evansi-infected rats.
Course and predictors of persistence of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in adults are still largely unknown. Neurobiological and clinical differences between child and adult ADHD raise the need for follow-up studies of patients diagnosed during adulthood. This study investigates predictors of ADHD persistence and the possibility of full remission 7 years after baseline assessment.
A 7-year follow-up study of adults with ADHD (n = 344, mean age 34.1 years, 49.9% males) was conducted. Variables from different domains (social demographics, co-morbidities, temperament, medication status, ADHD measures) were explored with the aim of finding potential predictors of ADHD persistence.
Retention rate was 66% (n = 227). Approximately a third of the sample (n = 70, 30.2%) did not maintain ADHD criteria and 28 (12.4%) presented full remission (<4 symptoms), independently of changes in co-morbidity or cognitive demand profiles. Baseline predictors of diagnostic persistence were higher number of inattention symptoms [odds ratio (OR) 8.05, 95% confidence interval (CI) 2.54–25.45, p < 0.001], number of hyperactivity/impulsivity symptoms (OR 1.18, 95% CI 1.04–1.34, p = 0.01), oppositional defiant disorder (OR 3.12, 95% CI 1.20–8.11, p = 0.02), and social phobia (OR 3.59, 95% CI 1.12–11.47, p = 0.03).
Despite the stage of brain maturation in adults suggests stability, approximately one third of the sample did not keep full DSM-IV diagnosis at follow-up, regardless if at early, middle or older adulthood. Although full remission is less common than in childhood, it should be considered as a possible outcome among adults.
Immature bovine oocytes were vitrified using the cryotop method and their post-warming survivability and capability to undergo in vitro maturation, fertilization and subsequent embryonic development were evaluated. In addition throughout the embryonic 2-cell, 4-cell, morula and blastocyst stages, the expression of four developmentally important genes (Cx43, CDH1, DNMT1 and HSPA14) was analysed using the real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Immature oocytes (n = 550) were randomly assigned to non-vitrified (fresh) or cryotop vitrification groups using ethylene glycol (EG) with 1,2 propanediol (PROH) or dimethylsulphoxide (DMSO). After warming, oocytes survivability, embryo cleavage and embryonic developmental rates were not statistically different between the two cryoprotectants groups. However, the DMSO group had a lower (P < 0.05) oocyte maturation rate compared with the fresh and PROH groups. For morula and blastocyst rates, the DMSO group achieved a lower (P < 0.05) morula rate compared with the fresh group, while at the blastocyst stage, there were no differences between fresh and both cryoprotectants groups. For molecular analysis, at the 4-cell stage, most studied genes showed an inconsistent pattern of expression either from the PROH or DMSO groups. Noteworthily, these differences were limited at the morula and blastocyst stages. In conclusion, the cryotop method is sufficient for vitrification of immature bovine oocytes, both for embryonic developmental competence and at the molecular level. Moreover, PROH showed some advantage over DMSO as a cryoprotectant.
The crystal structure of the novel metal organic framework (MOF) Zn(C3H5NO2S)2 is described. This MOF can serve as a model for active sites in metalloproteins, on diverse activities such as structural or catalytic functions. Each half of the amino acid act as a bidentate ligand to one Zn and as a monodentate ligand to another Zn, while the disulphide bond presents an important structural function, stabilizing the crystal packing. The structure has been obtained ab initio from synchrotron X-ray powder diffraction data. The compound crystallizes in the orthorhombic system (space group P212121), with a = 20.0906(7), b = 9.5842(3), c = 5.018 89(13), and V = 966.40(5) Å3, with Z = 4. The structure was determined using a direct space approach, by means of the Monte Carlo technique, followed by Rietveld refinement.
The aim of this study was to assess the effect of sulfamethoxazole/trimethoprim (ST) supplemented with diphenyl diselenide and sodium selenite in experimental toxoplasmosis, on oxidant/antioxidant biomarkers and cytokine levels. Eighty-four BALB/c mice were divided in seven groups: group A (negative control), and groups B to G (infected). Blood and liver samples were collected on days 4 and 20 post infection (p.i.). Levels of thiobarbituric acid (TBA) reactive substances and advanced oxidation protein products (AOPP) were assessed in liver samples. Both biomarkers were significantly increased in infected groups on day 4 p.i., while they were reduced on day 20 p.i., compared with group A. Glutathione reductase (GR) activity significantly (P<0·01) increased on day 4 p.i., in group G, compared with group A. INF-γ was significantly increased (P<0·001) in both periods, day 4 (groups B, C, F and G) and 20 p.i. (groups C, F and G). IL-10 significantly reduced (P<0·001) on day 4 p.i. in group B; however, in the same period, it was increased (P<0·001) in groups C and G, compared with group A. On day 20 p.i., IL-10 increased (P<0·001) in groups F and G. Therefore, our results highlighted that these forms of selenium, associated with the chemotherapy, were able to reduce lipid peroxidation and protein oxidation, providing a beneficial immunological balance between the production of pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokines.
In this paper, we present techniques for fatigue damage evaluation using spectral methods
and a model taking into account confined elasto-plastic behavior. The model is associated
with a local fatigue approach, covering the whole endurance domain (low cycle and high
cycle fatigue). It uses Neuber’s method and is valid for limited plasticity. To validate
this modeling, we perform a correlation between spectral methods, modified spectral
methods and experimental tests. Results presented here are focused on the uniaxial loading
Euclid is the next ESA mission devoted to cosmology. It aims at observing most of the extragalactic sky, studying both gravitational lensing and clustering over ~15,000 square degrees. The mission is expected to be launched in year 2020 and to last six years. The sheer amount of data of different kinds, the variety of (un)known systematic effects and the complexity of measures require efforts both in sophisticated simulations and techniques of data analysis. We review the mission main characteristics, some aspects of the the survey and highlight some of the areas of interest to this meeting.
The Euclid space mission proposes to survey 15000 square degrees of the extragalactic sky during 6 years, with a step-and-stare technique. The scheduling of observation sequences is driven by the primary scientific objectives, spacecraft constraints, calibration requirements and physical properties of the sky. We present the current reference implementation of the Euclid survey and on-going work on survey optimization.