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Several single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) could indirectly, as well directly, influence metabolic parameters related to health effects in response to selenium (Se) supplementation. This study aimed to investigate whether the selenoprotein SNPs were associated with the response of Se status biomarkers to the Brazil nut consumption in patients using statins and if the variation in Se homoeostasis could affect antioxidant protection, lipid profile, muscle homoeostasis and selenoproteins mRNA. The study was performed in the Ribeirão Preto Medical School University Hospital. Thirty-two patients using statins received one unit of Brazil nut daily for 3 months. Body composition, blood Se concentrations, erythrocyte glutathione peroxidase (GPX) activity, total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein (LDL), high-density lipoprotein (HDL), triacylglycerol (TAG), creatine kinase (CK) activity and gene expression of GPX1 and selenoprotein P (SELENOP) were evaluated before and after Brazil nut consumption. The volunteers were genotyped for SNP in GPX1 (rs1050450) and SELENOP (rs3877899 and rs7579). SNPs in selenoproteins were not associated with plasma and erythrocyte Se, but SNPs in SELENOP influenced the response of erythrocyte GPX activity and CK activity, TAG and LDL after Brazil nut consumption. Also, Brazil nut consumption increased GPX1 mRNA expression only in subjects with rs1050450 CC genotype. SELENOP mRNA expression was significantly lower in subjects with rs7579 GG genotype before and after the intervention. Thus, SNP in SELENOP could be associated with interindividual differences in Se homeostasis after Brazil nut consumption, emphasising the involvement of genetic variability in response to Se consumption towards health maintenance and disease prevention.
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 giant anteater Myrmecophaga tridactyla is categorized as Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List, and is extinct in several locations as a result of environmental pressures. We present the first records of the giant anteater in the largest continuous expanse of the Atlantic Forest biome, in southern Brazil, highlighting its occurrence in the highlands of the Serra do Mar mountain range. During a camera-trapping survey of medium and large mammals we obtained two records of the species, one in 2013 and the other in 2014. These records from dense rainforest highlands indicate the importance of this environment for the giant anteater and highlight these areas as possible foci for future studies of the species. In addition, we present a review of the species’ occurrence in protected areas in Brazil, to provide a resource for the conservation of this species and for future re-evaluations.
Increasingly, archaeological research in Amazonia is revealing complex precolonial occupation in areas around riverine confluences. In 2014, the first site-based archaeological investigations were undertaken in Gurupá, Pará, Brazil, a municipality that spans the region of the Xingu-Amazon confluence. The Portuguese controlled access to Amazonia from 1623 onward through a network of settlements organized around Gurupá. Results from extensive excavations of terra preta sites, landscape archaeology, and analysis of ceramic evidence suggest that this was also a precolonial crossroads. Carrazedo, once a booming historical town (Arapijó), sits atop a significantly larger terra preta site. Excavations in historical and precolonial sectors of Carrazedo found well-preserved remains, including a precolonial house terrace complex. The extent of terra preta and earthworks at Carrazedo indicate that the precolonial occupation was more intensive than the colonial-historical period occupation. Regional survey revealed colonial-historical period sites consistently overlying expansive precolonial sites, the density and extent of which suggest a major precolonial center at the Xingu-Amazon confluence. Overall, ecological and landscape modifications appear to have been more intense in the precolonial past than during later periods. Short- and long-distance settlement networks also differed during the two periods. This as-of-yet understudied region promises to shed new light on deep-time human-environment interactions and spatial organization in the humid tropics of Amazonia.
The occurrence of the pod weed, Halidrys siliquosa, is recorded for the
first time on the Portuguese coast. Several specimens of this brown algae were observed
attached to the rocky surface in tide pools at 41º44′10″N
8º52′34″W, extending southward its previously known
geographical distribution. The observed shift is inconsistent with general predictions of
species migrations under warming climate conditions, which anticipate poleward shifts
rather than southern expansions. Although more data will be required to undoubtedly
uncover its cause, the recently observed range expansion raises important questions about
the generalization of the previously stated biogeographic rules.
a shark tagging programme along the portuguese coast was initiated in 2001 in collaboration with the national marine fisheries service. from a total of 168 blue sharks (prionace glauca) tagged, 34 sharks were recaptured (20% return rate) providing important information on this species' movement patterns for the area. a total of 28 sharks travelled less than 1000 km while at liberty for time periods ranging from 22 to 1294 days. the remaining fish travelled long distances to north-west africa, central atlantic and the bay of biscay. only one shark made a transatlantic migration, being recaptured 3187 km from the tagging site. north–south movements seem to be related to seasonal sea-surface temperature variation in the north-east atlantic. seasonal segregation of different life stages also occurs.
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