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Cipo Canastero Asthenes luizae is a relict ovenbird restricted to rocky outcrops at high elevations within the campo rupestre vegetation of the Espinhaço Range in the state of Minas Gerais, south-eastern Brazil. This poorly known species is considered ‘Near Threatened’, but recent studies have suggested that it should be listed under a higher category of threat. To contribute to the knowledge of this species and its conservation assessment and related planning, we compiled all literature records of the species distribution (n = 16 locations), collected new data on its occurrence (n = 72 locations), and calculated its geographic range using four different approaches. First, we defined the sky islands where the species occurs (nine units) using the lowest elevation value recorded (1,100 m asl) as a cut-off. Second, we performed species distribution modelling (SDM) across the sky islands and identified an area of 2,225.21 km2. Third, we measured the species’ extent of occurrence (EOO = 24,555.85 km2) and used SDM to estimate its upper limit (EOOup = 30,697.58 km2). Fourth, we measured the area of occupancy (AOO = 228 km2) and used SDM to estimate its upper limit (AOOup = 1,827.39 km2). We analysed the Cipo Canastero sky islands in terms of landscape metrics including size, isolation, protected area coverage, shape index, core area index, and proportion covered by SDM. We observed a very fragmented distribution, especially in the North sector of the species distribution, composed of small and isolated populations (separated by up to 112 km); the South sector is the core of its distribution and is composed of larger, more connected patches with differences in shape complexity that are not strongly influenced by an edge effect. The range sizes calculated, along with other reported information regarding population and habitat trends, justifies the inclusion of the species in at least the ‘Vulnerable’ category.
The Rio Grande Cone is a major fanlike depositional feature in the continental slope of the Pelotas Basin, Southern Brazil. Two representative sediment cores collected in the Cone area were retrieved using a piston core device. In this work, the organic matter (OM) in the sediments was characterized for a continental vs. marine origin using chemical proxies to help constrain the origin of gas in hydrates. The main contribution of OM was from marine organic carbon based on the stable carbon isotope (δ13C-org) and total organic carbon/total nitrogen ratio (TOC:TN) analyses. In addition, the 14C data showed important information about the origin of the OM and we suggest some factors that could modify the original organic matter and therefore mask the “real” 14C ages: (1) biological activity that could modify the carbon isotopic composition of bulk terrestrial organic matter values, (2) the existence of younger sediments from mass wasting deposits unconformably overlying older sediments, and (3) the deep-sediment-sourced methane contribution due to the input of “old” (>50 ka) organic compounds from migrating fluids.
The rocky shores of the north-east Atlantic have been long studied. Our focus is from Gibraltar to Norway plus the Azores and Iceland. Phylogeographic processes shape biogeographic patterns of biodiversity. Long-term and broadscale studies have shown the responses of biota to past climate fluctuations and more recent anthropogenic climate change. Inter- and intra-specific species interactions along sharp local environmental gradients shape distributions and community structure and hence ecosystem functioning. Shifts in domination by fucoids in shelter to barnacles/mussels in exposure are mediated by grazing by patellid limpets. Further south fucoids become increasingly rare, with species disappearing or restricted to estuarine refuges, caused by greater desiccation and grazing pressure. Mesoscale processes influence bottom-up nutrient forcing and larval supply, hence affecting species abundance and distribution, and can be proximate factors setting range edges (e.g., the English Channel, the Iberian Peninsula). Impacts of invasive non-native species are reviewed. Knowledge gaps such as the work on rockpools and host–parasite dynamics are also outlined.
The effects of growing pinto peanut mixed with elephant grass-based pastures are still little known. The aim of the current research was to evaluate the performance of herbage yield, nutritive value of forage and animal responses to levels of pinto peanut forage mass mixed with elephant grass in low-input systems. Three grazing systems were evaluated: (i) elephant grass-based (control); (ii) pinto peanut, low-density forage yield (63 g/kg of dry matter – DM) + elephant grass; and (iii) pinto peanut, high-density dry matter forage yield (206 g/kg DM) + elephant grass. The experimental design was completely randomized with the three treatments (grazing systems) and three replicates (paddocks) in split-plot grazing cycles. Forage samples were collected to evaluate the pasture and animal responses. Leaf blades of elephant grass and the other companion grasses of pinto peanut were collected to analyse the crude protein, in vitro digestible organic matter and total digestible nutrients. The pinto peanut, high-density dry matter forage yield + elephant grass treatment was found to give the best results in terms of herbage yield, forage intake and stocking rate, as well as having higher crude protein contents for both elephant grass and the other grasses, followed by pinto peanut with low-density forage yield + elephant grass and finally elephant grass alone. Better results were found with the grass–legume system for pasture and animal responses.
The objective of the current paper was to apply mixed models to adjust the growth curve of quail lines for meat and laying hens and present the rates of instantaneous, relative and absolute growth. A database was used with birth weight records up to the 148th day of female quail of the lines for meat and posture. The models evaluated were Brody, Von Bertalanffy, Logistic and Gompertz and the types of residues were constant, combined, proportional and exponential. The Gompertz model with the combined residue presented the best fit. Both strains present a high correlation between the parameters asymptotic weight (A) and average growth rate (k). The two strains presented a different growth profile. However, growth rates allow greater discernment of growth profiles. The meat line presented a higher growth rate (6.95 g/day) than the lineage for laying (3.65 g/day). The relative growth rate was higher for lineage for laying (0.15%) in relation to the lineage for meat (0.13%). The inflection point of both lines is on the first third of the growth curve (up to 15 days). All results suggest that changes in management or nutrition could optimize quail production.
Diarrhoeagenic Escherichia coli (DEC) is a leading cause of infectious diarrhoea worldwide. In recent years, Escherichia albertii has also been implicated as a cause of human enteric diseases. This study describes the occurrence of E. coli pathotypes and serotypes associated with enteric illness and haemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS) isolated in Brazil from 2011 to 2016. Pathotypes isolated included enteropathogenic E. coli (EPEC), enteroaggregative E. coli (EAEC), enterotoxigenic E. coli (ETEC), enteroinvasive E. coli (EIEC) and Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC). PCR of stool enrichments for DEC pathotypes was employed, and E. albertii was also sought. O:H serotyping was performed on all DEC isolates. A total of 683 DEC and 10 E. albertii strains were isolated from 5047 clinical samples. The frequencies of DEC pathotypes were 52.6% (359/683) for EPEC, 32.5% for EAEC, 6.3% for ETEC, 4.4% for EIEC and 4.2% for STEC. DEC strains occurred in patients from 3 months to 96 years old, but EPEC, EAEC and STEC were most prevalent among children. Both typical and atypical isolates of EPEC and EAEC were recovered and presented great serotype heterogeneity. HUS cases were only associated with STEC serotype O157:H7. Two E. albertii isolates belonged to serogroup O113 and one had the stx2f gene. The higher prevalence of atypical EPEC in relation to EAEC in community-acquired diarrhoea in Brazil suggests a shift in the trend of DEC pathotypes circulation as previously EAEC predominated. This is the first report of E. albertii isolation from active surveillance. These results highlight the need of continuing DEC and E. albertii surveillance, as a mean to detect changes in the pattern of pathotypes and serotypes circulation and provide useful information for intervention and control strategies.
The goal of this study was to analyse the spatial pattern of tuberculosis (TB) mortality using different approaches, namely: mortality rates (MR), spatial relative risks (RR) and Bayesian rates (Global and Local) and their association with human development index (HDI), Global and its three dimensions: education, longevity and income. An ecological study was developed in Curitiba, Brazil based on data from Mortality Information System (2008–2014). Spatial scan statistics were used to compute RR and identify high-risk clusters. Bivariate Local Indicator of Spatial Associations was used to assess associations. MR ranged between 0 and 25.24/100.000 with a mean (standard deviation) of 1.07 (2.66). Corresponding values for spatial RR were 0–27.46, 1.2 (2.99) and for Bayesian rates (Global and Local) were 0.49–1.66, 0.90 (0.19) and 0–6.59, 0.98 (0.80). High-risk clusters were identified for all variables, except for HDI-income and Global Bayesian rate. Significant negative spatial relations were found between MR and income; between RR and HDI global, longevity and income; and Bayesian rates with all variables. Some areas presented different patterns: low social development/low risk and high risk/high development. These results demonstrate that social development variables should be considered, in mortality due TB.
In this work we explore the radiocarbon (14C) signal as an independent tool to assess the year of formation of individual tree rings of tropical species in northern Brazil. Three different species were analyzed in this work: Dipteryx magnifica, Enterolobium maximum, and Hymenolobium petraeum. The studied samples are from the stem of only one individual of each species, all cut down in 2008 in Porto Trombetas, Pará, Brazil. Individual tree rings were identified based on wood anatomy and they were counted from bark to pith. Several rings were selected for 14C analysis in order to cover the overall shape of the 14C atmospheric bomb peak (after 1955). The 14C content was measured at Laboratory of Radiocarbon, Universidade Federal Fluminense (LAC-UFF). Results are compared with the Southern Hemisphere 14C atmospheric calibration curves. For E. maximum and H. petraeum the 14C signal exhibits an overall good match with the SH zone 3 and suggests annual seasonality in the growth-ring formation. These species offer suitable characteristics for dendrochronology. The D. magnifica shows mismatches in the 14C measurements that are likely a result of difficulties in identifying ring boundaries with certainty. Additional techniques may be helpful to disentangle the origin of this discrepancy.
The present study investigated the impact of a western diet during gestation and lactation on the anthropometry, serum biochemical, blood pressure and cardiovascular autonomic control on the offspring. Male Wistar rats were divided into two groups according to their mother’s diet received: control group (C: 18% calories of lipids) and westernized group (W: 32% calories of lipids). After weaning both groups received standard diet. On the 60th day of life, blood samples were collected for the analysis of fasting glucose and lipidogram. Cardiovascular parameters were measured on the same period. Autonomic nervous system modulation was evaluated by spectrum analysis of heart rate (HR) and systolic arterial pressure (SAP). The W increased glycemia (123±2 v. 155±2 mg/dl), low-density lipoprotein (15±1 v. 31±2 mg/dl), triglycerides (49±1 v. 85±2 mg/dl), total cholesterol (75±2 v. 86±2 mg/dl), and decreased high-density lipoprotein (50±4 v. 38±3 mg/dl), as well as increased body mass (209±4 v. 229±6 g) than C. Furthermore, the W showed higher SAP (130±4 v. 157±2 mmHg), HR (357±10 v. 428±14 bpm), sympathetic modulation to vessels (2.3±0.56 v. 6±0.84 mmHg2) and LF/HF ratio (0.15±0.01 v. 0.7±0.2) than C. These findings suggest that a western diet during pregnancy and lactation leads to overweight associated with autonomic misbalance and hypertension in adulthood.
The Total Solar Irradiance (TSI), which is the total radiation arriving at Earth's atmosphere from the Sun, is one of the most important forcing of the Earths climate. Measurements of the TSI have been made employing instruments on board several space-based platforms during the last four solar cycles. However, combining these measurements is still challenging due to the degradation of the sensor elements and the long-term stability of the electronics. Here we describe the preliminary efforts to design an absolute radiometer based on the principle of electrical substitution that is under development at Brazilian's National Institute for Space Research (INPE).
Human toxocarosis is a chronic tissue parasitosis most often caused by Toxocara canis. The seroprevalence can reach up to 50%, especially among children and adolescents. The anthelmintics used in the treatment have moderate efficacy. The aim of this study was to evaluate the in vitro and in vivo anthelmintic activity of quinones and their derivatives against T. canis larvae and the cytotoxicity of the larvicidal compounds. The compounds were evaluated at 1 mg mL−1 concentration in microculture plates containing third stage larvae in an Roswell Park Memorial Institute (RPMI) 1640 environment, incubated at 37 °C in 5% CO2 tension for 48 h. Five naphthoxiranes were selected for the cytotoxicity analysis. The cell viability evaluated by 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide and lactate dehydrogenase assays using murine peritoneal macrophages isolated from C57BL/6 mice revealed that the naphthoxiranes (1 and 3) were less cytotoxic at a concentration of 0·05 mg mL−1. The efficacy of naphthoxiranes (1 and 3) was examined in murine toxocarosis also. The anthelmintic activity was examined by evaluating the number of larvae in the brain, carcass, liver, lungs, heart, kidneys and eyes. Compound (3) demonstrated anthelmintic activity similar to that of albendazole by decreasing the number of larvae in the organs of mice and thus could form the basis of the development of a new anthelmintic drug.
The first cause of death of dairy calves is often diarrhea which is mainly caused by pathogenic bacteria, which can result in excessive use of antibiotics. However, facing the increase concern by the industry and consumers, the use of antibiotics not only to control pathogens, but also to manipulate growth, has become a challenge. Alternative additives, such essential oils, have the potential to decrease antibiotic use, without reducing performance or increasing mortality of dairy calves. The objective of this study was to evaluate the use of a commercial blend of essential oils, incorporated into the calf starter and/or milk replacer to monitor the effect on overall calf performance, fecal scores and rumen fermentation parameters. A total of 30 Holstein calves received 6 l/day of a liquid diet, consisting of a commercial milk replacer containing 20% CP : 15% fat (EE). Calves had free choice access to water and calf starter. Weaning occurred at week 8, and calves were followed until the 10th week of age. Calves were assigned to one of the three treatment groups in a randomized block design. Treatments: (1) control without essential oils supplementation (C); (2) essential oils blend in the milk replacer at 400 mg/kg (MR) and (3) essential oils blend in the milk replacer (200 mg/kg) and starter feed (200 mg/kg) (MRS). From the 2nd week, calves were weighed and body measurements were taken, while concentrate intake and fecal scores were monitored daily. Blood samples were drawn weekly for determination of glucose and β-hydroxybutyrate. Fecal samples were collected weekly and analyzed for lactic acid bacteria and Enterobacteria; and ruminal fluid for determination of pH, short chain fatty acids, ammonia-N and counts of amylolytic and cellulolytic bacteria, and protozoa. Performance, fecal scores and intestines microorganisms were not affected by the essential oils supplementation. Ruminal and blood parameters were also not affected, with the exception the rumen ammonia-N concentration, with higher values when essential oils were supplemented in a combination of milk replacer and starter feed. Most of the evaluated parameters were affected by age of calves, mainly as a response to the increase in concentrate intake as animals’ aged. Essential oils are promising substitutes for antibiotics. However, the dose and routes of administration deserve further studies, allowing a better animal performance and health to be achieved.
Malcolm Roy Clarke (1930–2013) was a British teuthologist who made an important contribution to marine science in the Azores archipelago (Portugal). Malcolm started doing research in the Azores from 1980s onward, settling for residency in 2000 after retirement (in 1987). He kept publishing on Azorean cephalopods collaborating in 20% of the peer reviewed works focusing on two main areas: dietary studies; and the ecology of cephalopods on seamounts. Since his first visit in 1981, he was involved in the description of the dietary ecology of several cetaceans, seabirds, and large pelagic and deep-water fish. Using his own data, Malcolm revised the association of cephalopods with seamounts, updating and enlarging the different cephalopod groups according to species behaviour and ecology. Malcolm taught several students working in the Azores on cephalopods and beak identification, lecturing the Third International Workshop in Faial (2007). He empowered the recently established research community, by providing important contacts with foreign institutes and informal advice. He collaborated in the regional cetacean stranding network (RACA) and was an active member of the advisory board of the journal Arquipelago—Life and Marine Sciences. But the scientific role of Malcolm Clarke in the Azores went beyond his academic activities. In the last 10 years Malcolm and Dot Clarke dedicated themselves to building and running a museum on Pico Island, showing the biology of the sperm whale and its interaction with squid; a cultural and touristic legacy for future generations to enjoy.
Intestinal mucositis is an important toxic side effect of 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) treatment. Saccharomyces boulardii is known to protect from intestinal injury via an effect on the gastrointestinal microbiota. The objective of the present study was to evaluate the effect of S. boulardii on intestinal mucositis induced by 5-FU in a murine model. Mice were divided into saline, saline (control)+5-FU or 5-FU+S. boulardii (16 × 109 colony-forming units/kg) treatment groups, and the jejunum and ileum were removed after killing of mice for the evaluation of histopathology, myeloperoxidase (MPO) activity, and non-protein sulfhydryl group (mainly reduced glutathione; GSH), nitrite and cytokine concentrations. To determine gastric emptying, phenol red was administered orally, mice were killed 20 min after administration, and the absorbance of samples collected from the mice was measured by spectrophotometry. Intestinal permeability was measured by the urinary excretion rate of lactulose and mannitol following oral administration. S. boulardii significantly reversed the histopathological changes in intestinal mucositis induced by 5-FU and reduced the inflammatory parameters: neutrophil infiltration (control 1·73 (sem 0·37) ultrastructural MPO (UMPO)/mg, 5-FU 7·37 (sem 1·77) UMPO/mg and 5-FU+S. boulardii 4·15 (sem 0·73) UMPO/mg); nitrite concentration (control 37·00 (sem 2·39) μm, 5-FU 59·04 (sem 11·41) μm and 5-FU+S. boulardii 37·90 (sem 5·78) μm); GSH concentration (control 477·60 (sem 25·25) μg/mg, 5-FU 270·90 (sem 38·50) μg/mg and 5-FU+S. boulardii 514·00 (sem 38·64) μg/mg). Treatment with S. Boulardii significantly reduced the concentrations of TNF-α and IL-1β by 48·92 and 32·21 % in the jejunum and 38·92 and 61·79 % in the ileum. In addition, S. boulardii decreased the concentrations of chemokine (C–X–C motif) ligand 1 by 5-fold in the jejunum and 3-fold in the ileum. Interestingly, S. boulardii reduced the delay in gastric emptying (control 25·21 (sem 2·55) %, 5-FU 54·91 (sem 3·43) % and 5-FU+S. boulardii 31·38 (sem 2·80) %) and induced the recovery of intestinal permeability (lactulose:mannitol ratio: control 0·52 (sem 0·03), 5-FU 1·38 (sem 0·24) and 5-FU+S. boulardii 0·62 (sem 0·03)). In conclusion, S. boulardii reduces the inflammation and dysfunction of the gastrointestinal tract in intestinal mucositis induced by 5-FU.
In a recent study by our group on the prevalence of intestinal parasitic infections and on the knowledge, attitudes and practices of local residents of Campos dos Goytacazes, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, we observed that about 50% of the inhabitants were parasitized and had some knowledge of intestinal parasitic infections but did not apply this knowledge in daily practice. We were thus motivated to implement strategies in health education to promote preventive measures in the locality. The goal of the present work was to evaluate the influence of health education on the prevalence of intestinal parasitic infections in the region in an effort to strengthen public policies for controlling these diseases in Brazil. The methodology adopted was based on action-research and a theoretical framework of health promotion. Our results demonstrate that the study population exhibited an enhanced awareness of the importance of disease from intestinal parasitic infections. Attitudes and practices related to prevention were significantly improved after the shared health education. In conclusion, this study allowed the shared construction of knowledge that reflected the true needs of the residents.
The influence of negative substrate bias on the chemical, electrical and mechanical properties of silicon carbide (SiC) thin films deposited onto (100) silicon substrate by dc magnetron cosputtering without external substrate heating is reported. These studies were performed by using the following techniques: Rutherford backscattering spectroscopy (RBS), profilometry, Raman spectroscopy, four-point probe method and nanoindentation. The results indicate that there is a good correlation between the substrate bias voltage and the argon incorporation into SiC film, namely, the SiC films deposited under substrate bias of –200 V and –300 V have higher argon content and higher elastic modulus and hardness than those deposited at 0 V. An opposite behavior was found for electrical resistivity: the SiC deposited at –300 V has resistivity of 0.45 Ω.cm whereas the deposited at 0 V has 7.0 Ω.cm.
Cysteine peptidases of protozoa have been implicated in a variety of biological events, and the expression of these enzymes is modulated in response to distinct stimuli, including environmental changes and differentiation. In the present work, we have examined the expression of cysteine peptidases from Herpetomonas samuelpessoai grown at distinct temperatures and during dimethylsulfoxide (DMSO)-elicited differentiation. We demonstrated that a 45 kDa cysteine peptidase had its activity reduced during the parasite growth at 37°C in comparison to 26°C, and when cultured up to 72 h in the presence of DMSO. The modulation in the 45 kDa cysteine peptidase expression is connected to the differentiation process, since both temperature and DMSO are able to trigger the promastigote to paramastigote transformation in H. samuelpessoai. The possible immunological similarity of H. samuelpessoai proteins with well-known cysteine peptidases produced by trypanosomatid pathogens, including cruzipain (Trypanosoma cruzi) and cysteine peptidase b (cpb) from Leishmania mexicana, was also investigated, as well as with calpain molecules. The protein cellular lysate of H. samuelpessoai reacted with antibodies raised against cpb of L. mexicana and calpain of Drosophila melanogaster; however, no reaction was observed against cruzipain. The 35 kDa cpb-like protein had its expression diminished in DMSO-treated parasites, while the 80 kDa calpain-like molecule was enhanced and an additional 30 kDa calpain-related polypeptide was exclusively observed in these cells. Fluorescence microscopy and flow cytometry analyses corroborated these data. The results described above add H. samuelpessoai to the list of parasites whose differentiation seems to be correlated with cysteine peptidase expression.
The objective was to evaluate the effect of β-lactoglobulin (β-lg) polymorphism and seasonality on milk composition (fat, lactose, total solids, milk urea nitrogen, total protein, true protein, casein and somatic cell counts) of Holstein and Girolando cows. Milk and blood samples from 278 Holsteins cows and 156 Girolando cows were taken during two dry seasons and two rainy seasons, for milk composition analysis and to determine β-lg genotypes, respectively. BB genotype was the most frequent for both breeds, followed by AA genotype for Holstein (BB>AA>AB) and by AB for Girolando cows (BB>AB>AA). No differences were found in milk compositional characteristics among genetic variants of β-lg (AA, AB and BB) either between Holstein or Girolando cows. No association between milk composition and β-lg genetic polymorphism was observed. During the dry season, independently of the breed considered, higher contents of lactose, true protein, casein and casein:true protein ratio were found.