Publications by authors named "Maria Barros"

97 Publications

Medicines as an emergent contaminant: the review of microbial biodegration potential.

Folia Microbiol (Praha) 2022 Jan 3. Epub 2022 Jan 3.

Instituto Latino-Americano de Ciências da Vida E da Natureza, Universidade Federal da Integração Latino-Americana, Foz do Iguaçu - PR, 85870-650, Brazil.

Emerging environmental contaminants, such as medicine waste, are of great concern to the scientific community and to the local environmental and health departments because of their potential long-term effects and ecotoxicological risk. Besides the prolonged use of medicines for the development of modern society, the elucidation of their effect on the ecosystem is relatively recent. Medicine waste and its metabolites can, for instance, cause alterations in microbial dynamics and disturb fish behavior. Bioremediation is an efficient and eco-friendly technology that appears as a suitable alternative to conventional methods of water waste and sludge treatment and has the capacity to remove or reduce the presence of emerging contaminants. Thus, this review has the objective of compiling information on environmental contamination by common medicines and their microbial biodegradation, focusing on five therapeutic classes: analgesics, antibiotics, antidepressants, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), and contraceptives. Their effects in the environment will also be analyzed, as well as the possible routes of degradation by microorganisms.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12223-021-00941-6DOI Listing
January 2022

Helminth fauna and histopathology associated with parasitic infections in Phrynops geoffroanus (Schweigger, 1812) (Testudines, Chelidae) in a Brazilian river subjected to anthropogenic activities.

Vet Parasitol Reg Stud Reports 2021 Dec 13;26:100639. Epub 2021 Sep 13.

Programa de Pós-Graduação em Ciência Animal Tropical (PPGCAT), Universidade Federal Rural de Pernambuco (UFRPE), Rua Dom Manuel de Medeiros, 52171-900 Recife, Pernambuco, Brazil; Laboratório de Parasitologia (LAPAR), Departamento de Biologia, Universidade Federal Rural de Pernambuco (UFRPE), Rua Dom Manuel de Medeiros, 52171-900 Recife, Pernambuco, Brazil; Programa de Pós-Graduação em Biociência Animal (PPGBA), Universidade Federal Rural de Pernambuco (UFRPE), Rua Dom Manuel de Medeiros, 52171-900 Recife, Pernambuco, Brazil; Programa de Pós-Graduação em Biodiversidade (PPGBio), Universidade Federal Rural de Pernambuco (UFRPE), Rua Dom Manuel de Medeiros, 52171-900 Recife, Pernambuco, Brazil; Programa de Educação Tutorial Bacharelado em Ciências Biológicas (PET Biologia), Universidade Federal Rural de Pernambuco (UFRPE), Rua Dom Manuel de Medeiros, 52171-900 Recife, Pernambuco, Brazil.

The objective of this study was to determine the structure of the helminth fauna and identify the macroscopic and histopathological alterations associated with parasitic infections in Phrynops geoffroanus. Freshwater turtles of both sexes were captured during the dry and rainy seasons in four municipalities along the Capibaribe River. The study included 63 animals, of which 79.37% (50/63) were parasitized by one or more helminths. In total, 933 helminths of seven taxa were recovered: Serpinema monospiculatus, Spiroxys figueiredoi, Nematophila grandis, Polystomoides brasiliensis, Cheloniodiplostomum testudinis, Telorchis birabeni, and Prionosomoides scalaris. Monogeneans and digenetic trematodes were more sensitive to environmental pressures, since the prevalences varied significantly between areas. Nematodes proved to be more resistant to environmental pressure and caused severe injuries to their hosts: nodules in the stomach and small intestine, adhesions in the liver capsule, and pulmonary emphysema. Parasitic granulomas were recorded at the infection sites and in the lungs and liver, the latter caused by migration of S. figueiredoi larvae. This is the first record of P. brasiliensis, N. grandis, C. testudinis, and T. birabeni parasitizing P. geoffroanus in the state of Pernambuco. Histopathology proved to be an important tool for studies on the impact of parasites at the individual, population, and ecosystem levels. Considering the use of the Capibaribe River for public water supply, fishing, and other activities, within the One Health perspective, this study demonstrates that the anthropogenic impact affects parasites and their hosts, in addition to the human population that uses this ecosystem.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.vprsr.2021.100639DOI Listing
December 2021

Superior operational stability of immobilized L-asparaginase over surface-modified carbon nanotubes.

Sci Rep 2021 11 2;11(1):21529. Epub 2021 Nov 2.

Laboratory of Separation and Reaction Engineering - Laboratory of Catalysis and Materials (LSRE-LCM), Department of Chemical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, University of Porto, Rua do Dr. Roberto Frias, 4200-465, Porto, Portugal.

L-asparaginase (ASNase, EC 3.5.1.1) is an enzyme that catalyzes the L-asparagine hydrolysis into L-aspartic acid and ammonia, being mainly applied in pharmaceutical and food industries. However, some disadvantages are associated with its free form, such as the ASNase short half-life, which may be overcome by enzyme immobilization. In this work, the immobilization of ASNase by adsorption over pristine and modified multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) was investigated, the latter corresponding to functionalized MWCNTs through a hydrothermal oxidation treatment. Different operating conditions, including pH, contact time and ASNase/MWCNT mass ratio, as well as the operational stability of the immobilized ASNase, were evaluated. For comparison purposes, data regarding the ASNase immobilization with pristine MWCNT was detailed. The characterization of the ASNase-MWCNT bioconjugate was addressed using different techniques, namely Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM), Thermogravimetric Analysis (TGA) and Raman spectroscopy. Functionalized MWCNTs showed promising results, with an immobilization yield and a relative recovered activity of commercial ASNase above 95% under the optimized adsorption conditions (pH 8, 60 min of contact and 1.5 × 10 g mL of ASNase). The ASNase-MWCNT bioconjugate also showed improved enzyme operational stability (6 consecutive reaction cycles without activity loss), paving the way for its use in industrial processes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-00841-2DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8563809PMC
November 2021

The RNA Chaperone Hfq Participates in Persistence to Multiple Antibiotics in the Fish Pathogen .

Microorganisms 2021 Jun 29;9(7). Epub 2021 Jun 29.

Laboratorio de RNAs Bacterianos, Departamento de Ciencias Biológicas, Facultad de Ciencias de la Vida, Universidad Andres Bello, Santiago 8370186, Chile.

causes outbreaks of enteric redmouth disease in salmon aquaculture all over the world. The transient antibiotic tolerance exhibited by bacterial persisters is commonly thought to be responsible for outbreaks; however, the molecular factors underlying this behavior have not been explored in . In this study, we investigated the participation of the RNA chaperone Hfq from in antibiotic persistence. Cultures of the -knockout mutant (Δ) exhibited faster replication, increased ATP levels and a more reductive environment than the wild type. The growth curves of bacteria exposed to sublethal concentrations of ampicillin, oxolinic acid, ciprofloxacin and polymyxin B revealed a greater susceptibility for the Δ strain. The time-kill curves of bacteria treated with the antibiotics mentioned above and florfenicol, using inoculums from exponential, stationary and biofilm cultures, demonstrated that the Δ strain has significant defects in persister cells production. To shed more light on the role of Hfq in antibiotic persistence, we analyzed its dependence on the (p)ppGpp synthetase RelA by determining the persister cells production in the absence of the gene. The Δ and ΔΔ strains displayed similar defects in persister cells formation, but higher than Δ strain. Similarly, stationary cultures of the Δ and ΔΔ strains exhibited comparable levels of ATP but higher than that of the Δ strain, indicating that is epistatic over . Taken together, our findings provide valuable information on antibiotic persistence in , shedding light on the participation of Hfq in the persistence phenomenon.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/microorganisms9071404DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8308036PMC
June 2021

ConA-Coated Liposomes as a System to Delivery β-Lapachone to Breast Cancer Cells.

Anticancer Agents Med Chem 2021 Jun 24. Epub 2021 Jun 24.

Laboratório de Imunopatologia Keizo-Asami, Universidade Federal de Pernambuco, Recife, PE, Brazil.

Background: Target treatment using site-specific nanosystems is a hot topic for treating several diseases, especially cancer.

Objective: The study was set out to develop site-specific liposomes using ConcanavalinA (ConA) to target β-lapachone(β-lap) to human breast cancer cells.

Methods: Liposomes were prepared and characterized according to diameter size, zeta potential, ConA conjugation(%), and β-lap encapsulation efficiency (%). Isothermal Titration Calorimetry evaluated the binding energy between the biomolecules, which compose the liposomes. ConA avidity was assessed before and after conjugation. Cytotoxicity was evaluated, and fluorescence microscopy was performed to investigate the influence of ConA influenced on MCF-7 uptake.

Results: Uncoated and ConA-coated liposomes presented size, and zeta potential values from 97.46 ± 2.01 to 152.23 ± 2.73nm, and -6.83 ± 0.28 to -17.23 ±0.64mV, respectively. Both ConA conjugation and β-lap encapsulation efficiency were approximately 100%. The favorable and spontaneous process confirmed the binding between ConA and the lipid. Hemagglutination assay confirmed ConA avidity once Lipo-ConA and Lipo-PEG-ConA were able to hemagglutinate the red blood cells at 128-1 and 256-1, respectively. Lipo-ConA was not cytotoxic, and the site-specific liposomes presented the highest toxicity. ConA-coated liposomes were more internalized by MCF7 than uncoated liposomes.

Conclusion: Therefore, the presence of ConA on the surface of liposomes influenced MCF7 uptake, suggesting that it could be used as a promising site-specific system to target β-lap to cancer cells.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2174/1871520621666210624112452DOI Listing
June 2021

First report and characterization of Tenacibaculum maritimum isolates recovered from rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) farmed in Chile.

J Fish Dis 2021 Oct 1;44(10):1481-1490. Epub 2021 Jun 1.

Laboratorio de Patología de Organismos Acuáticos y Biotecnología Acuícola, Universidad Andrés Bello, Viña del Mar, Chile.

The present study reports on the first isolation of Tenacibaculum maritimum in rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) farmed in Chile. In March 2020, two cages raising rainbow trout (~250 g) in the Los Lagos Region suffered a disease outbreak. In total, 17,554 fish died (3.5%-4.8% accumulated mortality). Microbiological analysis of the diseased fish obtained two representative isolates (i.e. Tm-035 and Tm-036). These were obtained from the external gross skin lesions-typical of tenacibaculosis-of two fish. Phenotyping, PCR tests and sequencing of the 16S rRNA and housekeeping genes confirmed the isolates as T. maritimum. The pathogenic potential of Tm-035 was further assessed by bath challenging Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar), which killed 70 ± 15% of fish within 11 days. Dead fish presented the same external clinical signs as did the farmed rainbow trout specimens. This research further broadens the known host distribution of this pathogen. Furthermore, the virulence experiments demonstrated that T. maritimum does not have a specific host. Additional studies are needed to evaluate the risk of T. maritimum for the O. mykiss farming industry.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/jfd.13466DOI Listing
October 2021

Assessing Phonological Profiles in Children and Adolescents With Down Syndrome: The Effect of Elicitation Methods.

Front Psychol 2021 12;12:662257. Epub 2021 May 12.

LOGIN Research Group, Department of Psychology, University of Oviedo, Oviedo, Spain.

In the context of comparing linguistic profiles across neurodevelopmental disorders, Down syndrome (DS) has captured growing attention for its uneven profile. Although specific weaknesses in grammatical and phonological processing have been reported, research evidence on phonological development remains scarce, particularly beyond early childhood. The purpose of this study was to explore the phonological profiles of children and adolescents with Down syndrome. The profiles were based on the frequency and relative proportion of the processes observed by classes, and they were compared to those of typically developing preschool children of similar verbal age. A complementary goal was to assess the effect of two different methods of elicitation: a test of articulation and spontaneous speech sampling. Finally, intergroup and intragroup differences in full match percentages between three positions at syllable-level (complex onset, medial coda, and final coda) were assessed. The results of the present study confirmed that the frequency of phonological processes in children and adolescents with DS is atypically high and is above what is expected for lexical age and at the same level as grammatical age. Highly increased frequency of processes, consistent in all kinds of processes and positions at the syllable-level, and asynchronous with verbal age and mental age suggest atypical developmental trajectories of phonological development in the Down syndrome population.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2021.662257DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8149804PMC
May 2021

Cactus cladodes cause intestinal damage, but improve sheep performance.

Trop Anim Health Prod 2021 Apr 22;53(2):281. Epub 2021 Apr 22.

Department of Animal Science, Federal Rural University of Pernambuco, Dom Manuel de Medeiros Street, s/n, Dois Irmãos, Recife, PE, 52171-900, Brazil.

The objective of this study was to evaluate the effect of three varieties of cactus cladodes resistant to carmine cochineal on the animal performance and histology of the large intestine of sheep. Forty lambs (21.0 ± 2.0 kg body weight) were distributed in a completely randomized design, with four treatments and ten repetitions. The experimental treatments consisted of a control diet and three more diets in which part (750 g/kg) of the elephant grass hay, and all the corn were replaced by Miúda cactus cladodes, IPA-Sertânia cactus cladodes, or Orelha de Elefante Mexicana (O.E.M.) cactus cladodes. On the 60th day after the introduction of the tested diets, blood samples were collected to quantify serum magnesium (Mg) levels. After 63 days of experiment, the animals were slaughtered and fragments of the cecum and colon were collected for histopathological analysis. The inclusion of the Miúda and O.E.M. cactus cladodes in the diet caused inflammatory lesions in the cecum (100% of the animals) and in the colon (71.43% of the animals) of the sheep. The inflammation in the cecum caused by Miúda and O.E.M. cactus cladodes was considered accentuated (P = 0.009). Less voluntary water intake was observed for animals submitted to diets with cactus cladodes (P < 0.001), as well as higher water content in the feces (P < 0.001). The cactus cladodes, especially the Miúda and O.E.M. varieties, cause lesions in the tissue morphology of the cecum and colon of sheep, but improve productive performance.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11250-021-02731-1DOI Listing
April 2021

Toxicity potential of denture adhesives: A scoping review.

J Prosthet Dent 2021 Apr 19. Epub 2021 Apr 19.

Associate Professor, Department of Oral Rehabilitation, Faculty of Dentistry, University of Pernambuco (UPE), Recife, Brazil. Electronic address:

Statement Of Problem: Denture adhesives are widely used products, but limited evidence regarding their toxicity is available.

Purpose: The purpose of this scoping review was to map the existing literature on the toxic potential of denture adhesives.

Material And Methods: This scoping review was structured based on the 5-step methodology proposed by Arksey and O'Malley and The Joanna Briggs Institute Manual for Evidence Synthesis and followed the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic reviews and Meta-Analyses extension for Scoping Reviews. The methods were registered on the Open Science Framework (). The following research question was formulated: Are there any toxic effects related to the use of denture adhesives? The electronic literature search was performed independently by 2 authors in the following databases: PubMed/MEDLINE, Scopus, Web of Science, and the Cochrane Library. The inclusion criteria were in vitro and clinical studies; studies that evaluated the cytotoxic properties of denture adhesives as local or systemic implications; and studies published in English.

Results: The search conducted in October 2020 provided 1099 articles. In total, 33 studies were included, 14 in vitro and 19 clinical studies. Commercially available denture adhesives have a dose-dependent cytotoxic effect on fibroblasts and keratinocytes, with poor cell recovery noted in older human fibroblasts. Patients presented different levels of neurologic or hematological alterations associated with the excessive use of denture adhesives.

Conclusions: Most commercially available denture adhesives have a dose-dependent cytotoxic effect, and the use of well-adapted removable dental prostheses, proper patient follow-ups, and correct instructions for their use when indicated should be a priority.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.prosdent.2021.03.003DOI Listing
April 2021

Aerococcus spp infective endocarditis following a prostate biopsy: a case report.

Rev Inst Med Trop Sao Paulo 2021 24;63:e18. Epub 2021 Mar 24.

Hospital dos Servidores do Estado, Serviço de Cirurgia Torácica, Recife, Pernambuco, Brazil.

We report a rare case of an infective endocarditis by Aerococcus spp in a bioprosthetic aortic valve following a prostate biopsy, in an asymptomatic adult with no additional risk factor for prostate cancer, excepting for age. The diagnosis was based on the presence of vegetations on the bioprosthesis seen on the echocardiogram, positive blood cultures and fever, and a favorable clinical outcome following the treatment with ceftriaxone and gentamicin.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1678-9946202163018DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7997663PMC
April 2021

Sexual Competence in Higher Education: Global Perspective in a Multicentric Project in the Nursing Degree.

Healthcare (Basel) 2021 Feb 4;9(2). Epub 2021 Feb 4.

EdSex Project, Comprehensive Health Research Centre Integrated Researcher, Nursing Department, University of Evora, 7000-811 Evora, Portugal.

Sexuality is an important issue in the university careers of nursing students to ensure that they provide comprehensive care. It is necessary according to the recommendation of the World Health Organization. However, research reveals deficiencies and the need for further development. The aim of the study is to describe the perspective of teachers and students on the content of sexuality in nursing education. The project aims to analyze the attitudes and beliefs of the students about the sexuality of their patients. Furthermore, the experience and sexual lives of the future nurses, as well the teaching of sexuality content in the curriculum, will be analyzed. As for the educators, their level of knowledge about sexuality and vision of sexuality education in undergraduate nursing education will be analyzed. This study is an exploratory and descriptive study with a quantitative-qualitative approach in a multi-center context. The sample is composed of students and professors of nursing courses from five universities (Portugal, Spain, Italy and United States). Questionnaires and semistructured interviews will be used for data collection. The results of the study will allow the inclusion of sexual competence in the curriculum from the beginning in higher education. This article describes the research protocol.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/healthcare9020166DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7915218PMC
February 2021

Methodology for creating and validating object naming and semantic tests used by Verst-Maldaun Language Assessment during awake craniotomies.

Clin Neurol Neurosurg 2021 Mar 13;202:106485. Epub 2021 Jan 13.

Neuro-Oncology postgraduate course at Sirio Libanês Hospital, São Paulo, Rua Barata Ribeiro, 414, cj 63, São Paulo, SP, 01308-000, Brazil. Electronic address:

Verst-Maldaun Language Assessment (VMLA) is a new intraoperative neuropsychological test (NT) within our local culture, e.g., native Portuguese speaking Brazilians. It aims to fill the specific need of an objective and dynamic approach for assessing the language network during awake craniotomies. The test includes object naming (ON) and semantic functions. This paper describes the process of validation, allowing for other centers to create their own language assessment. The validation process included 248 volunteers and the results were associated with age, gender and educational level (EL). The factor with the greatest impact was EL, followed by age. Intraoperative image learning by repetition is unlikely, since it is composed of 388 items and 70 combinations. The test will be available for free use under http://www.vemotests.com/ (beginning in February 2021).
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.clineuro.2021.106485DOI Listing
March 2021

Diversity and Genetic Relationship of Free-Range Chickens from the Northeast Region of Brazil.

Animals (Basel) 2020 Oct 12;10(10). Epub 2020 Oct 12.

Department of Animal Science, Federal University of Piauí (UFPI), Campus Universitário Ministro Petrônio Portella, Teresina 64049-550, Piauí, Brazil.

In this study, we aimed to evaluate the genetic diversity within and among chicken breeds from the northeast region of Brazil (states of Bahia and Piauí) using microsatellite markers. In addition, we assessed the identity and genetic relationships of chickens from Europe, Africa, and South America, as well as their influence on the formation of the Brazilian breeds. A total of 25 microsatellite markers and a panel containing 886 samples from 20 breeds (including the Brazilian chickens) were used in this study. Different statistical parameters were used to estimate the genetic diversity and relationship among the genetic groups studied. Our study indicates that the Brazilian Creole chickens have high genetic variability. The results show that chickens reared in the states of Bahia and Piauí could have originated from different ancestors. The Brazilian breeds studied have an evolutionary relationship with chickens from Portugal, Nigeria, Chile, and Spain. Our results will contribute directly to the conservation and recognition of Brazilian Creole chicken breeds and provide a solid basis for the demonstration of their genetic identity and genetic conservation of American Creole chicken populations.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/ani10101857DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7600294PMC
October 2020

Genetic and Biochemical Diversity of Clinical and Isolates in a Public Hospital in Brazil.

Microb Drug Resist 2021 Apr 2;27(4):509-517. Epub 2020 Sep 2.

Department of Biochemistry, Federal University of Pernambuco, Recife, Pernambuco, Brazil.

Life-threatening bacterial infections are a major concern in health care services worldwide. This retrospective study aimed to demonstrate genetic and biochemical diversity in isolates of and from a public hospital in Brazil. A total of 63 isolates collected from different sites of infection and hospital sectors were characterized, and their susceptibility profile to antibiotics was assessed for 18 drugs belonging to 8 antimicrobial categories using the automated BACTEC system. Genetic diversity was assessed using the multiple locus variable number tandem repeat analysis. Among the isolates of , 83% were classified as extensively drug resistant (XDR), and 17 genotypic profiles were identified. About 67% of isolates were susceptible to antimicrobials and were distributed into 37 genotypic profiles, revealing genetic heterogeneity. This study has demonstrated the multicolonization of investigated pathogens and the high frequency (95.8%) of multidrug-resistant and XDR, as well as high genetic diversity, among the isolates supporting the continuous need to monitor these species in the hospital environment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1089/mdr.2020.0154DOI Listing
April 2021

NEOTROPICAL CARNIVORES: a data set on carnivore distribution in the Neotropics.

Ecology 2020 11;101(11):e03128

Independent researcher, Rua Afonso Pena, 226, Lavras, MG, 37200-000, Brazil.

Mammalian carnivores are considered a key group in maintaining ecological health and can indicate potential ecological integrity in landscapes where they occur. Carnivores also hold high conservation value and their habitat requirements can guide management and conservation plans. The order Carnivora has 84 species from 8 families in the Neotropical region: Canidae; Felidae; Mephitidae; Mustelidae; Otariidae; Phocidae; Procyonidae; and Ursidae. Herein, we include published and unpublished data on native terrestrial Neotropical carnivores (Canidae; Felidae; Mephitidae; Mustelidae; Procyonidae; and Ursidae). NEOTROPICAL CARNIVORES is a publicly available data set that includes 99,605 data entries from 35,511 unique georeferenced coordinates. Detection/non-detection and quantitative data were obtained from 1818 to 2018 by researchers, governmental agencies, non-governmental organizations, and private consultants. Data were collected using several methods including camera trapping, museum collections, roadkill, line transect, and opportunistic records. Literature (peer-reviewed and grey literature) from Portuguese, Spanish and English were incorporated in this compilation. Most of the data set consists of detection data entries (n = 79,343; 79.7%) but also includes non-detection data (n = 20,262; 20.3%). Of those, 43.3% also include count data (n = 43,151). The information available in NEOTROPICAL CARNIVORES will contribute to macroecological, ecological, and conservation questions in multiple spatio-temporal perspectives. As carnivores play key roles in trophic interactions, a better understanding of their distribution and habitat requirements are essential to establish conservation management plans and safeguard the future ecological health of Neotropical ecosystems. Our data paper, combined with other large-scale data sets, has great potential to clarify species distribution and related ecological processes within the Neotropics. There are no copyright restrictions and no restriction for using data from this data paper, as long as the data paper is cited as the source of the information used. We also request that users inform us of how they intend to use the data.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ecy.3128DOI Listing
November 2020

Chitosan, alginate and other macromolecules as activated carbon immobilizing agents: A review on composite adsorbents for the removal of water contaminants.

Int J Biol Macromol 2020 Dec 15;164:2535-2549. Epub 2020 Aug 15.

State University of Maringa, Department of Chemical Engineering, Maringa 87020-900, Parana, Brazil. Electronic address:

Activated carbon (AC) is widely used in water treatment, however, it has some technical disadvantages, such as its high cost and difficulty to recover. To overcome these drawbacks, AC particles have been encapsulated within a polymeric support, mainly chitosan and alginate-based. The use of these biological macromolecules results in composites with lower-cost, superior mechanical properties, and higher number of functional groups, advantages that have been attracted the attention of the scientific community. However, the number of publications is relatively low, demonstrating an important research gap yet to be investigated. Thus, this paper aims to review the recent studies concerning the use of chitosan, alginate and other macromolecules as AC immobilizing agents, describing the synthesis methods, characterization analyses and adsorption studies, focusing on the main advantages, disadvantages, gaps and future perspectives. Throughout the review it was verified that the composites were able to remove several water contaminants, mainly dyes and heavy metals, with high efficiency. Synergistic effects were detected, indicating the role of both polymers and AC, which increased the spectrum of contaminants capable of being adsorbed. Finally, it was observed a gap in column experiments, suggesting that future studies are essential to elucidate the applications in the industrial perspective.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ijbiomac.2020.08.118DOI Listing
December 2020

Multi-component adsorption study by using bone char: modelling and removal mechanisms.

Environ Technol 2020 Aug 14:1-16. Epub 2020 Aug 14.

Departamento de Engenharia Química, Universidade Estadual de Maringá, Maringá, Brazil.

Highly efficient simultaneous removal of paracetamol and Cu ions from aqueous solutions was accomplished by using bovine bone char (BC). The adsorption behaviour was determined by kinetic and equilibrium studies of both single and binary system solutions. BC is a predominantly mesoporous material with a surface area of 103 m g. The influence of the initial pH on Cu removal was tested, suggesting that the optimal pH was 3.0. The removal of paracetamol from single and binary systems was 9.45 and 12.7%, respectively. On the other hand, the Cu removal was 36.2% for a single system, suggesting a higher affinity for BC. Moreover, in the case of binary mixtures, the presence of paracetamol led to an enhanced affinity of Cu due to a synergistic/cooperative mechanism, which led to a copper removal of 97.3%. The cooperative model was successfully adjusted to the equilibrium data of the binary systems. The modelling results indicated the formation of a first adsorption layer where paracetamol and copper are retained, and a second layer with a great affinity for copper ions after the formation of a Cu-paracetamol complex, leading to higher removal of Cu.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/09593330.2020.1805026DOI Listing
August 2020

Role of HPV 16 variants among cervical carcinoma samples from Northeastern Brazil.

BMC Womens Health 2020 08 1;20(1):162. Epub 2020 Aug 1.

Federal University of Maranhão (UFMA), São Luís, Maranhão, Brazil.

Background: Cervical cancer is the fourth most common type of cancer affecting women globally. In Brazil, it is the third most frequent type of cancer in women and HPV is present in approximately 90% of cases. Evidence suggests that variants of HPV 16 can interfere biologically and etiologically during the development of cervical cancer.

Methods: Cervix tumor fragments were collected, their DNA was extracted, and nested PCR was used to detect HPV. Positive samples were sequenced to determine the viral genotype. To characterize the HPV 16 strains, positive samples PCR was used to amplify the LCR and E6 regions of the HPV 16 virus.

Results: Data from 120 patients with cervical cancer were analyzed. Most women were between 41 and 54 years of age, had schooling until primary school, a family income between 1 and 2 times the minimum wage and were married/in a consensual union. There was no statistically significant association between HPV or socio-demographic variables and risk factors for cervical cancer (P <  0.05). HPV was present in 88 women (73%). The most prevalent types were HPV 16 (53.4%), HPV 18 (13.8%), HPV 35 (6.9%) and HPV 45 (5.7%). Of the 47 HPV 16 positive cases, variant A (49%) was present in 23 samples, followed by variant D in 20 cases (43%), and variants B and C in 2 cases each (4%). The most prevalent histological type of HPV 16 tumors was squamous cell carcinoma, followed by adenocarcinoma. There was a statistically significant association between HPV 16 variants and the tumors' histological types (P <  0.001).

Conclusions: Knowledge of HPV 16 variants will provide data on their influence on the pathological and oncogenic aspects of cervical lesions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12905-020-01035-0DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7395427PMC
August 2020

NEOTROPICAL ALIEN MAMMALS: a data set of occurrence and abundance of alien mammals in the Neotropics.

Ecology 2020 11;101(11):e03115

Universidade Federal da Integração Latino-Americana, Foz do Iguaçu, Paraná, Brazil.

Biological invasion is one of the main threats to native biodiversity. For a species to become invasive, it must be voluntarily or involuntarily introduced by humans into a nonnative habitat. Mammals were among first taxa to be introduced worldwide for game, meat, and labor, yet the number of species introduced in the Neotropics remains unknown. In this data set, we make available occurrence and abundance data on mammal species that (1) transposed a geographical barrier and (2) were voluntarily or involuntarily introduced by humans into the Neotropics. Our data set is composed of 73,738 historical and current georeferenced records on alien mammal species of which around 96% correspond to occurrence data on 77 species belonging to eight orders and 26 families. Data cover 26 continental countries in the Neotropics, ranging from Mexico and its frontier regions (southern Florida and coastal-central Florida in the southeast United States) to Argentina, Paraguay, Chile, and Uruguay, and the 13 countries of Caribbean islands. Our data set also includes neotropical species (e.g., Callithrix sp., Myocastor coypus, Nasua nasua) considered alien in particular areas of Neotropics. The most numerous species in terms of records are from Bos sp. (n = 37,782), Sus scrofa (n = 6,730), and Canis familiaris (n = 10,084); 17 species were represented by only one record (e.g., Syncerus caffer, Cervus timorensis, Cervus unicolor, Canis latrans). Primates have the highest number of species in the data set (n = 20 species), partly because of uncertainties regarding taxonomic identification of the genera Callithrix, which includes the species Callithrix aurita, Callithrix flaviceps, Callithrix geoffroyi, Callithrix jacchus, Callithrix kuhlii, Callithrix penicillata, and their hybrids. This unique data set will be a valuable source of information on invasion risk assessments, biodiversity redistribution and conservation-related research. There are no copyright restrictions. Please cite this data paper when using the data in publications. We also request that researchers and teachers inform us on how they are using the data.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ecy.3115DOI Listing
November 2020

Amerindian genetic ancestry as a risk factor for tuberculosis in an amazonian population.

PLoS One 2020 16;15(7):e0236033. Epub 2020 Jul 16.

Laboratório de Genética Humana e Médica, Universidade Federal do Pará, Belém, Pará, Brazil.

In recent years, the incidence of tuberculosis (TB) has declined worldwide, although this disease still occurs at relatively high rates in Amerindian populations. This suggests that the genetic ancestry of Amerindians may be an important factor in the development of infections, and may account for at least some of the variation in infection rates in the different populations. The present study investigated the potential influence of Amerindian genetic ancestry on susceptibility to tuberculosis in an Amazon population. The study included 280 patients diagnosed with tuberculosis and 138 asymptomatic hospital employees with no history of TB, but who were in contact with bacterially active TB patients. Ancestry analysis was run on a set of 61 Ancestry-Informative Markers to estimate European, African, and Amerindian genetic ancestry using STRUCTURE v2.2. The TB group had significantly higher Amerindian ancestry in comparison with the control group, and significantly lower European ancestry. Amerindian ancestry in the 20-60% range was found to be the principal risk factor for increased susceptibility to TB. The results of the study indicate that Amerindian ancestry is an important risk factor for susceptibility to TB in the admixed population of the Brazilian Amazon region.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0236033PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7365596PMC
September 2020

Comparative Genomics of Clinical Strains From Brazil Reveals Polyclonal Dissemination and Selective Exchange of Mobile Genetic Elements Associated With Resistance Genes.

Front Microbiol 2020 17;11:1176. Epub 2020 Jun 17.

Aggeu Magalhães Institute (IAM), Fundação Oswaldo Cruz (Fiocruz), Recife, Brazil.

is an opportunistic bacterial pathogen infecting immunocompromised patients and has gained attention worldwide due to its increased antimicrobial resistance. Here, we report a comparative whole-genome sequencing and analysis coupled with an assessment of antibiotic resistance of 46 strains (45 plus one ) originated from five hospitals from the city of Recife, Brazil, between 2010 and 2014. An average of 3,809 genes were identified per genome, although only 2,006 genes were single copy orthologs or core genes conserved across all sequenced strains, with an average of 42 new genes found per strain. We evaluated genetic distance through a phylogenetic analysis and MLST as well as the presence of antibiotic resistance genes, virulence markers and mobile genetic elements (MGE). The phylogenetic analysis recovered distinct monophyletic groups corresponding to five known (ST1, ST15, ST25, ST79, and ST113) and one novel ST (ST881, related to ST1). A large number of ST specific genes were found, with the ST79 strains having the largest number of genes in common that were missing from the other STs. Multiple genes associated with resistance to β-lactams, aminoglycosides and other antibiotics were found. Some of those were clearly mapped to defined MGEs and an analysis of those revealed known elements as well as a novel Tn-Tn transposon with a clear ST specific distribution. An association of selected resistance/virulence markers with specific STs was indeed observed, as well as the recent spread of the OXA-253 carbapenemase encoding gene. Virulence genes associated with the synthesis of the capsular antigens were noticeably more variable in the ST113 and ST79 strains. Indeed, several resistance and virulence genes were common to the ST79 and ST113 strains only, despite a greater genetic distance between them, suggesting common means of genetic exchange. Our comparative analysis reveals the spread of multiple STs and the genomic plasticity of from different hospitals in a single metropolitan area. It also highlights differences in the spread of resistance markers and other MGEs between the investigated STs, impacting on the monitoring and treatment of in the ongoing and future outbreaks.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fmicb.2020.01176DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7326025PMC
June 2020

[Life after sexual reassignment surgery: significance for gender and transsexuality].

Cien Saude Colet 2020 Jun 28;25(6):2347-2356. Epub 2018 Sep 28.

Programa de Pós-Graduação em Educação, UFES. Vitória, ES, Brasil.

The Transsexualization Process is the main service directed to trans-specific health in Brazil, which provides services such as hormone therapy and sexual reassignment surgeries to the trans population. In this article, the significance surrounding the surgical procedure, the new genitalia, gender and transsexuality among women who underwent sexual reassignment surgery at the Cassiano Antônio de Moraes University Hospital (HUCAM), located in Vitória, Espírito Santo State, Brazil, was analyzed. Qualitative research was carried out, narrative interviews were recorded, and thematic content analysis was performed. The sample was composed of 9 participants selected by snowball sampling. The conclusion drawn is that the surgeries are related to the search for the humanization of bodies. The comprehension about being a woman was not limited to a biological status for gender. Transsexuality was presented as a transitional experience between genders. The sexual reassignment surgery was seen as a strategy of corporal correction in line with expectations about social relationships in gender by participants, the success of which is evaluated from the standpoint of beauty, pleasure and passability.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/1413-81232020256.26002018DOI Listing
June 2020

Activated hydrochar produced from brewer's spent grain and its application in the removal of acetaminophen.

Bioresour Technol 2020 Aug 18;310:123399. Epub 2020 Apr 18.

State University of Maringa, Department of Chemical Engineering, Maringa 87020-900, Parana, Brazil. Electronic address:

Acetaminophen has shown a gradual increase in detection in surface waters. Although present in low concentrations, it should be removed to prevent deleterious effects. Thus, adsorption onto activated carbon is emphasized. Adsorbents may be produced by hydrothermal carbonization (HTC), an environmental-friendly process. Therefore, this work aimed to investigate the use of HTC, verifying its application in acetaminophen removal. Brewer's spent grain (BSG), its hydrochar (HC-BSG) and its activated hydrochar (AHC-BSG) were characterized. HTC provided material with high carbon content. Lignocellulosic breakdown has been demonstrated in HC-BSG and AHC-BSG, but in the latter it was more intense as a result of activation with KOH. Also, a high surface area was found in AHC-BSG (1512.83 m g), resulting in an adsorption of 318.00 mg g. The pseudo-second-order and Langmuir models were fitted to the experimental data. Therefore, HTC was effective as a pretreatment for AHC-BSG, resulting in significant acetaminophen removals.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biortech.2020.123399DOI Listing
August 2020

Cholestatic syndrome as initial manifestation of pancreatic metastasis of papillary thyroid carcinoma: case report and review.

Arch Endocrinol Metab 2020 Apr 27;64(2):179-184. Epub 2020 Mar 27.

Unidade de Endocrinologia Oncológica, Instituto Nacional de Câncer José Alencar Gomes da Silva, Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brasil.

Most papillary thyroid carcinomas (PTC) harbor excellent prognosis. Although rare, distant metastases normally occur in lungs and/or bones. Here we describe a rare case of pancreatic metastasis presenting with rapid onset cholestatic syndrome. A literature review was also performed. A 73-year-old man with a high risk PTC was submitted to total thyroidectomy (TT) followed by radioiodine therapy. After initial therapy, he persisted with progressive rising serum thyroglobulin levels but with no evidence of structural disease. Recently, the patient presented with a rapid onset and progressive cholestatic syndrome. A 4 cm lesion in pancreas was identified, with echoendoscopy fine-needle aspiration biopsy (FNAB) confirming a pancreatic metastasis from PTC. The patient was submitted to a successful pancreaticoduodenectomy. Pancreatic metastases of PTC are rare and few long-term follow-up data are available to guide management. Fourteen cases were former reported, mean age was 65.7 years-old with mean time between PTC and pancreatic metastasis diagnosis of 7.9 years. Nine of them had another distant metastasis, nine were diagnosed by FNAB and just two received sorafenib.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.20945/2359-3997000000215DOI Listing
April 2020

Geotherapy combined with kinesiotherapy is efficient in reducing pain in patients with osteoarthritis.

J Bodyw Mov Ther 2020 Jan 1;24(1):77-81. Epub 2019 Jun 1.

Master's Program in Health Promotion, Physical Therapy and Physical Education Undergraduation, Adventist University of Sao Paulo (UNASP), Brazil. Electronic address:

Introduction: Patients with osteoarthritis (OA) suffer from a degenerative disease that causes several physical disabilities and pain. Despite the few studies involving exercise combined with geotherapy (a therapy using poultices made from earth materials such as clay or mud) for patients with OA, this subject is still under debate, as effect of the earth material remains unclear. The aim of this study was to compare pain, joint stiffness and disability in patients who underwent kinesiotherapy (K) or geotherapy combined with kinesiotherapy (GK).

Method: This was a clinical randomized single-blinded prospective study, in which 48 individuals participated. Volunteers were evaluated for pain perception, pressure pain tolerance thresholds, and responded to questionnaires about pain, joint stiffness and physical disability (WOMAC) and about symptoms and disability (Lequesne Algofunctional Index). Patients in K group underwent 15 twice-weekly sessions of kinesiotherapy consisting of stretching and strengthening exercises for lower limbs. GK patients received a poultice of powder dolomite mixed with hot water on the knees for 25 min before each of the 15 sessions of the same kinesiotherapy program.

Results: Both interventions were effective in reducing pain, joint stiffness and physical disability (p < 0.001), and in increasing pressure pain thresholds (p < 0.05); however, patients who underwent GK presented a more pronounced reduction in pain perception (p = 0.006) than those in K group. They also exhibited more tolerance to pain in all sites evaluated.

Conclusion: Both interventions were effective in reducing pain, joint stiffness and physical disability, but GK produced significantly better results in pain perception.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jbmt.2019.05.032DOI Listing
January 2020

Biosorption mechanisms of cationic and anionic dyes in a low-cost residue from brewer's spent grain.

Environ Technol 2021 Aug 29;42(19):2925-2940. Epub 2020 Jan 29.

Department of Chemical Engineering, State University of Maringa, Maringa, Brazil.

The brewer's spent grain (BSG) is a byproduct of the brewing industry produced in large quantities and with few ecological disposal options. The use of this low-cost residue was investigated for the removal of methylene blue (MB) and tartrazine yellow (TY) dyes. The BSG has been extensively characterized to obtain its physicochemical characteristics. Batch experiments were conducted to investigate the effects of biosorption parameters: initial pH, kinetics, equilibrium isotherms and adsorption thermodynamics. The characterization showed high carbon content and heterogeneous morphology with the presence of meso and macropores. The best experimental conditions were obtained as pH 11 for MB and pH 2 for TY. Kinetics resulted in an equilibrium time of 240 min for MB and 300 min for TY and was best represented by the pseudo-second order model. Different interaction mechanisms were suggested, such as electrostatic interactions, electron donors and electron acceptors, hydrogen bonds, π-π dispersion interactions and the dye molecules aggregation. Equilibrium data were better represented by Langmuir isotherm. The maximum adsorbed amount of MB and TY was 284.75 and 26.18 mg/g, respectively, in each better experimental condition. Through the thermodynamic analysis, it was observed that the adsorption of the dyes was spontaneous and favourable. MB is preferentially retained through chemisorption, whereas TY followed a physical process. Considering the characteristics and results found compared to the recent literature, it was verified that BSG can be used as an effective and innovative biosorbent for removal purposes of dyeing effluent.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/09593330.2020.1718217DOI Listing
August 2021

Routes for Specialization in Psychology throughout Europe.

Behav Sci (Basel) 2019 Dec 19;10(1). Epub 2019 Dec 19.

Clinical and Health Psychology Department, ISPA-Instituto Universitário, Lisboa 1100-304, Portugal.

The specialization of psychology helps to delineate fields in the practice of psychology. When establishing professional qualification criteria, associations seek to promote, in their members, scientific skills and knowledge considered fundamental for the practice of psychology in a given area. The present study reports on a survey of the member associations of the European Federation of Psychologists Associations (EFPA). The survey inquired about: (a) the initial requisites for entering the profession and (b) additional requisites for specialization. Of the 37 associations contacted, 14 replied and we retrieved the information of 12 associations from their official websites. The results indicate that specialization is widespread throughout Europe and is independent of the regulation of the profession. In almost half of the countries considered, the specialization process is completed in universities-it is frequently associated with the postgraduate level of the EuroPsy-and relies on conventional learning methods. The number of existing specialties in psychology is very high, but the traditional areas (clinical and health, education, and social/organizational) are more prevalent. The results are discussed in light of the advantages, but also the challenges posed by the specialization in psychology. A continuous model of the specialization of psychology is proposed with two stages: broad and advanced psychology areas.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/bs10010007DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7016684PMC
December 2019

Histomorphometric changes of the fore-stomach of lambs fed with diets containing spineless cactus genotypes resistant to Dactylopius sp.

Trop Anim Health Prod 2020 May 17;52(3):1299-1307. Epub 2019 Dec 17.

Department of Animal Science, Federal Rural University of Pernambuco, Dom Manuel de Medeiros Street, s/n, Dois Irmãos, Recife, PE, 52171-900, Brazil.

The histomorphometric parameters of the fore-stomach epithelium of lambs fed with spineless cactus genotypes resistant to Dactylopius sp. were evaluated. Thirty-two lambs (23.0 ± 2.06 kg body weight) were distributed in a completely randomized design with four treatments and eight replications. The treatments consisted of the base diet and diets in which part of the elephant grass hay and all ground corn was replaced by the Miúda, IPA-Sertânia, or Orelha de Elefante Mexicana (OEM) spineless cacti. The keratin layers of the ruminal epithelium of the animals consuming the spineless cacti Miúda and OEM presented greater thickening relative to the control diet: 47.31, 41.30, and 25.81 μm, respectively. The heights of the ruminal papillae were higher in the animals that were fed with the OEM spineless cactus. The Miúda spineless cactus caused an enlargement in the keratinized layer of the reticulum epithelium, as well as a decrease in the thickness of the non-keratinized layers. The diet containing OEM spineless cactus resulted in greater thickening of the keratin layer of the omasal epithelium and decreased thickness of the non-keratinized layers. The spineless cacti Miúda and OEM changed the morphology of the fore-stomach epithelium and increased the dry matter intake and weight gain of lambs.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11250-019-02129-0DOI Listing
May 2020

Children's selective trust: When a group majority is confronted with past accuracy.

Br J Dev Psychol 2019 11 20;37(4):571-584. Epub 2019 Jul 20.

Universidade Federal do Vale do São Francisco, Petrolina, Pernambuco, Brazil.

In two experiments, 3- to 5-year-old children were tested for their preferences when seeking and accepting information about novel animals. In Experiment 1, children watched as two adults named unfamiliar animals - one adult was predominantly accurate, whereas the other was predominantly inaccurate, as judged by a teacher. In a subsequent test phase, participants viewed additional unfamiliar animals and were invited to endorse one of two conflicting names. Either the predominantly accurate or the predominantly inaccurate adult proposed one name, whereas a majority of three unfamiliar adults proposed the other name. Children were more likely to endorse the predominantly accurate adult as compared to the majority but showed no significant preference for the predominantly inaccurate adult as compared to the majority. In Experiment 2, participants watched two adults correctly name three familiar animals, but only one named three additional unfamiliar animals whereas the other expressed uncertainty. On subsequent test trials, children preferred the apparently well-informed adult to the less-informed adult but, contrary to the results of Experiment 1, children preferred the information provided by a majority instead of the apparently well-informed adult. The implications of these results are discussed in the light of previous research on children's selective trust in an accurate informant as compared to a consensus. Statement of contribution What is already known on the subject? Young children monitor past accuracy and use this epistemic cue to decide whom to trust; Children are receptive to information coming from a consensus; Non-epistemic cues, such as familiarity and accent, also influence children's deference What does this study adds? Children favour a dissenter over a majority if the dissenter's past accuracy has been publicly highlighted. They favour a majority if a dissenter's past accuracy has not been publicly highlighted. A confident informant is preferred to a hesitant informant.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/bjdp.12297DOI Listing
November 2019

Analysis of direct repeats and spacers of CRISPR/Cas systems type I-F in Brazilian clinical strains of Pseudomonas aeruginosa.

Mol Genet Genomics 2019 Oct 16;294(5):1095-1105. Epub 2019 May 16.

Departamento de Microbiologia, Instituto Aggeu Magalhães, Recife, Pernambuco, Brazil.

CRISPR/Cas is an adaptive immune system found in prokaryotes, with the main function of protecting these cells from invasion and possible death by mobile genetic elements. Pseudomonas aeruginosa is considered a model for type I-F CRISPR/Cas system studies. However, its CRISPR loci characteristics have not yet been thoroughly described, and its function has not yet been fully unraveled. The aims of this study were to find the frequency of the system in Brazilian clinical isolates; to identify the loci sequence, its spacer diversity and its origins; as well as to propose a unified spacer library to aid in future structural studies of the CRISPR loci of P. aeruginosa. We investigated types I-F and I-E gene markers to establish CRISPR/Cas typing, and observed two strains harboring both systems simultaneously, a very rare feature. Through amplification and sequencing of CRISPR loci related to type I-F system, we describe polymorphisms in DRs and 350 spacers, of which 97 are new. The spacers that were identified had their possible organisms or proteins of origin identified. Spacer arrays were grouped in five different CRISPR patterns and the plasticity was inferred by rearrangements in spacer arrays. Here, we perform the first detailed and focused description of CRISPR/Cas elements in Brazilian clinical strains of P. aeruginosa. Our findings reflect active and highly diverse CRISPR loci, and we suggest that CRISPR/Cas may also pose as a transcriptional regulatory mechanism. The structural and diversity features described here can provide insights into the function of CRISPR/Cas in this pathogen and help guide the development of new therapeutic strategies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00438-019-01575-7DOI Listing
October 2019
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