Scielo RSS <![CDATA[Anais da Academia Brasileira de Ciências]]> vol. 91 num. 4 lang. en <![CDATA[SciELO Logo]]> <![CDATA[LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Dealing with predatory publishing is a shared responsibility: the role of Latin American journals]]> <![CDATA[Metallic Phthalocyanines: impact of the film deposition method on its supramolecular arrangement and sensor performance]]> Abstract This short review gives a concise overview of the impact of deposition methods on the supramolecular arrangement of metallic phthalocyanine films and their applications. Primarily, an introduction about the possible phthalocyanine molecular structures and derivatives obtained from modification on the phthalocyanine rings was presented. The possibility of perfecting/improving the supramolecular arrangement of metallic phthalocyanine (MPcs) films by using different deposition techniques such as Langmuir-Blodgett (LB), Langmuir-Schaefer (LS), Layer-by-Layer (LbL), physical vapor deposition (PVD) and electrodeposition was discussed in further details. Herein, we highlighted some techniques used on the characterization of supramolecular arrangement (morphology, optical properties, and molecular organization), including the impact on sensing applications. The main scope of this short review is focused on the advances made in this research field in the last five years. <![CDATA[Materials from renewable resources: new properties and functions]]> Abstract: Sustainable production requires increasing use of raw materials from renewable sources, processed under mild conditions with minimal effluent production. These requirements are satisfied by using materials derived from biomass, in synergy with food and energy production. The possibilities of biomass are continuously enlarged by new findings, as in the intrinsic nanocomposite properties of natural rubber and the amphiphile behavior of cellulose that translated into new functional materials, including high-performance, flexible and conductive non-metallic materials. Other findings are allowing a better understanding of electrostatic phenomena that play a positive role in electrostatic adhesion and cohesion of nanocomposites made from biomass products. Moreover, this should allow the development of safe electrostatic separation techniques, suitable for the fractionation of crude mixtures of biomass residues. A current study on rubber electrostatics is showing its capabilities as a transducer of mechanical energy while providing clues to understand the performance of the dielectric elastomers used in robotic self-sensing actuators. <![CDATA[Proteins and Peptides at the Interfaces of Nanostructures]]> Abstract: The present review focuses on the proteins and peptides at the interfaces of nanostructured metals and semiconductors as a result of their use in synthesis in-situ and functionalization of nanostructures. We start the review with an introduction about the peculiar properties of nanostructured materials and their applications. In the following, the chemical and structural properties of peptides and proteins that allow their use as reducing, stabilizing, and functionalization agents are discussed. Proteins and peptides have not only the chemical groups for the metal ion reducing but also provide templates for directing the crystalline growing of nanostructures to the desired shapes and sizes. Proteins and peptides are also used mainly for the stabilization and functionalization of a diversity of nanostructured materials providing properties such as biocompatibility, plasmon-enhanced catalysis, sensing, micro/nanomotors, spin filters, and others. Nanostructured materials of metal oxides have mainly been functionalized with proteins and peptides to gain specific properties such as light harvesting and spin filters. Herein, we described the synthesis and functionalization of some types of nanostructured materials by using peptides and proteins. In the last part of the review, it is discussed the perspectives and challenges for the use of proteins and peptides in Nanotechnology. <![CDATA[Weathering Resistance of Waterborne Polyurethane Coatings Reinforced with Silica from Rice Husk Ash]]> Abstract: Waterborne polyurethanes (WPUs) are interesting materials for coatings when compared to solvent-based polyurethanes, once that reducing the concentration of volatile organic compounds that are harmful for human health and the environment. However, the WPU has low weathering resistance. In order to improve this behavior among others properties, inorganic fillers has been added in these systems. SiO2 particles from various sources, mainly, from agro-industrial waste, as rice husk has attracted the scientific and technological interest. In this study, the accelerated weathering essay was performed in waterborne polyurethane (WPU)/ silica (from rice husk ash) composites in order to evaluate the thermal and physical changes in these materials. These composites were prepared by two distinct methods: in situ polymerization and blending method. The highest resistance to thermal degradation and to accelerated weathering was reached with WPU/silica composites obtained by blending method due the interactions between SiO2 particles and the polymer matrices. Blending method for preparation WPU/silica composites proved to be a simpler and faster method, with no drawback for large scale application. <![CDATA[Hydrogen production from aqueous glycerol using titanate nanotubes decorated with Au nanoparticles as photocatalysts]]> Abstract: Protonated titanate nanotubes (HTiNts) were synthesized using the hydrothermal method, followed by proton exchange with acid. Gold nanoparticles decorated titanate nanotubes (AuHTiNts) were obtained by the reduction of AuCl4- under vigorous stirring with an aqueous solution of HTiNts containing 1 wt% of ascorbic acid. To investigate the surface structural chemistry of the titanate and AuHTiNts, the following characterization methods were used: scanning and transmission electron microscopy, X-ray diffraction, UV-Vis diffuse reflectance spectroscopy, Raman spectroscopy and X-ray photo-electron spectroscopy. The mean internal and external diameters for titanate nanotubes were found to be 5.46 ± 0.08 nm and 8.42 ± 0.03 nm, respectively, whereas the mean diameter of gold nanoparticles was measured to be 9.68 nm ± 0.03 nm. The as-synthesized AuHTiNts was used as photocatalyst in hydrogen production from glycerol as a sacrificial agent. The enhancement in the production of hydrogen, using the heterogeneous AuHTiNts catalysts, can be attributed to the intrinsic catalytic potential of gold as well as its interactions with titanate nanostructure. <![CDATA[Dendritic Gold Nanoparticles Towards Transparent and Electroactive Electrodes]]> Abstract: The combination of UV-visible absorption and electrochemical experiments (spectroelectrochemistry) enables to obtain highly specific spectroscopic information (in situ and operando) from modified surfaces. However, such application can be limited by the self-absorbance, for example, when metallic nanoparticles are present on modified surfaces. Indium-tin oxide onto glass (ITO) is a typical electrode commonly used for spectroelectrochemistry; ITO is an oxide-based semiconductor, and in numerous applications it is necessary to promote the modification of the electrode surface without significant loss of transparency. Here, we report a simple strategy to obtain ITO electrodes modified with self-assembled polyelectrolytes and active dendritic gold nanoparticles (AuNPs), a combination of soft and metallic materials that results in electrodes with significant optical transparency. Self-assembled poly(sodium styrene sulfonate) and polyamidoamine dendrimer (PSS/PAMAN bilayer) were applied successfully as efficient platform for monodisperse dendritic AuNPs electrodeposition, and the electrode containing those materials shows substantial optical transmittance from 400nm to 800nm. The combination of transparency and the presence of AuNPs homogeneously dispersed start to be a practical approach to develop metal-based electrodes for spectroelectrochemistry. <![CDATA[Size and shape-controlled nanomaterials based on modified polyol and thermal decomposition approaches. A brief review.]]> Abstract: Since its inception in 2007, the Colloidal Materials Group, one of the research groups in nanotechnology of the Institute of Chemistry of São Carlos (IQSC) at University of São Paulo (USP) carries out studies related to the development of syntheses methods of nanoparticles and multifunctional nanostructured systems. Our works search new synthesis methodologies that allow high size and shape control of the individual nanoparticles or that compose the nanostructured systems and has as a principle the synthetic approaches based on the modified polyol and thermal decomposition processes. Systems involving nanoparticles have received extensive attention both in the fundamental research and in several technological applications exploring the unique properties presented in nanomaterials. These properties are strongly size- and shape-dependent of the nanoparticles and a large distribution of size or shape implies in a high response dispersion, justifying the intense research for the so-called nanoparticle monodisperse systems. In this review, we present the main aspects to obtain monodisperse nanoparticulate systems, correlating with the synthesis processes used in our group and some of our results in systems involving nanoparticles with magnetic, optical, and electronic properties, as well as some obtained composite materials for different applications. <![CDATA[Zn, Co, Cr, As, and genotoxic effects in the ichthyofauna species from polluted and non-polluted/protected estuaries of the São Paulo coast, Brazil]]> Abstract: The human impact on estuarine regions results in an increasing concentration of trace elements in the environment, exposing aquatic organisms. In this study, Zn, Co, Cr, and As were determined in the muscle tissue of some fish species from Santos-São Vicente (SSV), a recognized polluted region, and in the Cananeia estuary (CAN). Genotoxicity was also determined for the evaluation of the chronic effect on ichthyofauna, to enlarge the bank of environmental data regarding the effects of pollution, and to suggest other fish bioindicator species that may contribute to monitoring programs. The obtained data showed a similar profile of an accumulation of Co and Zn in Micropogonias furnieri and Chaetodipterus faber, where: Santos Bay &gt; CAN &gt; inner area of SSV. A low frequency of micronucleus was observed. However, in general, fish from the inner area of the SSV estuary presented more nuclear abnormalities than fish from Santos Bay and CAN. In the inner area of SSV, Centropomus paralelus and Diapterus rhomneus showed more changes than other fish species. It was possible to consider that the habits of each species, contributed to a different profile of trace element accumulation, followed by the chemical components in the organism offering different vulnerability. <![CDATA[Leachate and vinasse used in a biological process combined with Fenton’s reaction: a green method for treatment of textile effluents]]> Abstract: The production of textiles generates a large amount of liquid residues considered to be environmentally problematic and which, if discarded without due treatment, may cause eutrophication of water sources, the intoxication of living beings, and the blocking of light penetration. Some methods have been applied for the treatment of this type of waste, with the prominence of biological and physicochemical techniques. The combination of two or more techniques enhances the treatment’s efficiency. This work investigated the use of bacteria derived from the leachate produced by the textile industry itself, fed with vinasse, a by-product of the alcohol industry, with subsequent application of Fenton’s reaction. The biological method, optimized in terms of aeration and quantity of nutrients for the bacteria, combined with the physicochemical method optimized in terms of the amount of reagents, was efficient for the discoloration of the effluent in approximately 100 %, for toxicity reduction, for the degradation of organic matter in 80 %, and with acceptable acidity for disposal after only eight days of treatment. The method was considered of great efficiency and low application cost, without the production of hazardous waste. <![CDATA[White sand vegetation in an Amazonian lowland under the perspective of a young geological history]]> Abstract: What controls the formation of patchy substrates of white sand vegetation in the Amazonian lowlands is still unclear. This research integrated the geological history and plant inventories of a white sand vegetation patch confined to one large fan-shaped sandy substrate of northern Amazonia, which is related to a megafan environment. We examined floristic patterns to determine whether abundant species are more often generalists than the rarer one, by comparing the megafan environments and older basement rocks. We also investigated the pattern of species accumulation as a function of increasing sampling effort. All plant groups recorded a high proportion of generalist species on the megafan sediments compared to older basement rocks. The vegetation structure is controlled by topographic gradients resulting from the smooth slope of the megafan morphology and microreliefs imposed by various megafan subenvironments. Late Pleistocene-Holocene environmental disturbances caused by megafan sedimentary processes controlled the distribution of white sand vegetation over a large area of the Amazonian lowlands, and may have also been an important factor in species diversification during this period. The integration of geological and biological data may shed new light on the existence of many patches of white sand vegetation from the plains of northern Amazonia. <![CDATA[Response of duck breeders to dietary L-Carnitine supplementation during summer season]]> Abstract: A total number of 300 (225 ducks and 75 drakes) Sudani ducks, 28-wk-old were divided into five groups to investigate the effects of dietary L-carnitine (LC) supplementation on productive, hatching and physiological performance as well as nutrients digestibility coefficients. The results indicated that the productive performance and Semen quality parameters (ejaculate volume, sperms concentration and advanced motility) were significantly improved by LC supplementation (150-450 mg /kg diet) as compared to the control. Hatchability of fertile eggs (%) was significantly improved, while total embryonic mortality was significantly decreased by supplementing 300 and 450 mg LC/kg diet. Supplementing different dietary LC levels resulted in significantly high values of hemoglobin, red and white blood cells count and lymphocyte (L) cells percentage, while it decreased heterophils (H) cells and H/L ratio. Serum albumin, total cholesterol and AST enzyme values were significantly low in ducks fed diets supplemented with LC. Serum triglycerides were significantly the lowest by feeding 300 and 450 mg LC/kg diet. Nutrients digestibility coefficients were significantly improved in drakes fed diet supplemented with 450 mg LC/kg diet. Conclusively, dietary LC supplementation at 300 or 450 mg/kg for duck breeders in summer could improve productive, hatching and physiological performance and nutrients digestibility coefficients. <![CDATA[Genotoxic and Genoprotective Potential of Black Mulberry (<em>Morus nigra</em>) Fruit]]> Abstract: Black Mulberry (Morus nigra L.) belongs to Moraceae family. The present study evaluated the possible genotoxic and/or protective activities of black mulberry fruit juice (BMFJ), in vitro, using mitomycin C (MMC) as a positive control, by chromosomal aberrations and micronucleus assays. Human lymphocytes were treated with BMFJ concentrations alone (1/1, 1/2, 1/4, 1/8 dilutions), pretreatment (49h) (0.20 μg/ml MMC+ 1/1 BMFJ, 0.20 μg/ml MMC+1/2 diluted BMFJ, 0.20 μg/ml MMC+1/4 diluted BMFJ, 0.20 μg/ml MMC+1/8 diluted BMFJ) and simultaneous-treatment (48h) (0.20 μg/ml MMC+ 1/1 BMFJ, 0.20 μg/ml MMC+1/2 diluted BMFJ, 0.20 μg/ml MMC+1/4 diluted BMFJ, 0.20 μg/ml MMC+1/8 diluted BMFJ). The in vitro results demonstrated that BMFJ showed no genotoxicity, but it significantly decreased chromosomal aberration and micronucleus frequency induced by MMC. Our results showed that all concentrations of BMFJ revealed no genotoxicity but protective activity against genomic changes induced by anti-tumor agent MMC in human lymphocytes. Protective effects of BMFJ on MMC induced chromosomal damages most probably due to its free radical scavenging activity. <![CDATA[The larva of <em>Neoneura confundens</em> Wasscher and van’t Bosch, 2013 (Odonata, Coenagrionidae) and key to the larvae of genus]]> Abstract: The beautifully colored damselflies included in Neoneura Selys are divided in 28 species known from North, Central and South America. Larval stage is little known, only seven species were described at this stage. We describe and illustrate the final instar larva of Neoneura confundens for the first time. Adults associated to this larva correspond to the blue form of the species and are also discussed and illustrated. The larva of N. confundens is similar to other Neoneura larvae, showing 1 premental seta and a well-marked nodus in caudal lamellae, but it can be differentiated by having fringed posterior margin in all tibiae and in middle and hind tarsi, among other characters. A key to known larvae of Neoneura and new records extending the species range in the southern cone are provided. <![CDATA[<em>Stenodema longicuneata</em> (Carvalho and Rosas, 1966) (Hemiptera, Heteroptera, Miridae) in Patagonia: redescription, new synonym and geographic distribution]]> Abstract: The genus Stenodema Laporte, 1832 is a group of grass-feeding plant bugs worldwide distributed, with five species recorded for the Subantarctic sub-region (sunsuMorrone 2015). Males of Stenodema longicuneata (Carvalho and Rosas, 1966) are redescribed and photographed. Stenodema laolaoensis (Carvalho, 1985) is proposed as a junior synonym of S. longicuneata. New geographic records are provided and distributional and biogeographic issues are discussed. <![CDATA[Pudicinae (Nematoda) coparasitic in <em>Proechimys roberti</em> (Rodentia: Echimyidae) from the Brazilian Amazonia: description of a new species of <em>Pudica</em>, redescription of <em>Pudica evandroi</em> (Travassos) and updated key to the species of the genus]]> Abstract: The re-examination of nematodes collected decades ago from a spiny rat, Proechimys roberti (Echimyidae) from Pará State, revealed the presence of Acanthostrongylus acanthostrongylusTravassos, 1937, and two coparasitic species of Pudica (Heligmonellidae: Pudicinae), one of them new to science. Pudica minima n. sp. mostly resembles Pudica tenuaDurette-Desset, 1970, described from Proechimys semispinosus in Colombia. Nevertheless, it differs from P. tenua by having a synlophe with 12 ridges with poorly developed careen, bursal pattern of type 2-2-1 on the right lobe, bursal rays 2 and 3 similar in length, and spicules longer with spoon-shaped tips. Pudica evandroi (Travassos, 1937) was already described from Pr. roberti but its synlophe remained undescribed and the original description lacked some details. A detailed study of the synlophe is provided and the range of morphometric data for males and females is enlarged. The study of the synlophe allowed ratifying the placement of this species within Pudica, as early suggested by previous authors. The species list and identification key to species of Pudica are updated with the inclusion of three species. The status of Heligmosomum alphaTravassos, 1918, which was transferred to Pudica in 1990, is emended and the species is considered a Nippostrongylinae incertae sedis. <![CDATA[A new species of Stethelmis Hinton (Coleoptera: Elmidae) from Argentina and description of its larva]]> Abstract: A new species of Stethelmis, S. shepardi sp. nov., is described for Patagonia, Argentina from adults of both sexes. A full description and illustrations of both the adult and the larva of the new species are provided with comments on its habitat and distribution. Adults of the new species are compared with those of S. kaszabi (Hinton 1970) and S. chilensis (Hinton 1945). The larva of S. shepardi is compared with that of S. kaszabi, the other Stethelmis larva described. We also describe and illustrate for the first time the male genitalia of S. kaszabi. A key to the known species of Stethelmis is also included. <![CDATA[Native and ornamental exotic resources in pollen loads and garbage pellets of four stingless bees (Apidae, Meliponini) in an urban environment with riparian native forest]]> Abstract: An entomopalynological study to assess pollen use by wild bees was performed in an urban environment with riparian native forest in the Chaco region of Argentina. A combined method for sampling pollen loads and garbage pellets at nest entrances in four stingless bees with different entrance size and forager traffic was here successfully used. Sampling was carried out in a short period of time (late winter) and located within a distance of 50 m. Pollen analysis using acetolysis showed that most identified pollen types (31) were from native species, 12 from ornamental exotic species, 5 included native and ornamental exotic species and 18 of uncertain status. A much broader pollen spectrum was present in garbage pellets (62 types) than loads (14 types). A few resources from previous blooming (late spring-summer) were identified in garbage pellets, which were mainly composed of current flowerings. From the 66 pollen types found in all samples, many (18) remained unidentified due to the complex nature of the vegetation surrounding the nests and the generalist behaviour of these bees. The versatile foraging behaviour on spontaneous (mostly native) and cultivated (mostly ornamental exotic) pollen resources is an important issue for the conservation and rearing of stingless bee colonies in urban habitats where native flora is preserved, particularly the riparians, where a high richness of blooming plants is available. <![CDATA[Impact of immunological state on eco-physiological variables in one of the southernmost lizards in the world]]> Abstract: The immune state is an essential component of survival as it directly influences physiological performance and health status. Variation in the leukocyte profile, a significantly increase in body temperature, and a detriment of the eco-physiological performance are among the possible consequences of an unhealthy state. In this study we analyse and discuss how field body temperature, preferred body temperature, the speed for sprint and long runs, locomotor stamina, and body condition can be affected by the immunological state (i.e. leukocyte profile) in a wild population of Liolaemus sarmentoi. Juveniles and adult males with a high percentage of eosinophils, basophils, and a low percentage of monocytes preferred higher body temperatures in a thermal gradient, while pregnant females maintained thermal preferences independently of leukocyte profile. Although juveniles with a high percentage of heterophils showed less locomotor stamina, adult males and pregnant females showed no differences in locomotor performance in relation to leukocyte profile. This study represents a starting point in eco-immunology of a wild lizard population of Liolaemus in cold and temperate environments of Patagonia where the southward shift in the geographic ranges of pathogen populations due to global warming represents a threat to resident host populations. <![CDATA[Morphological and morphometric variations of <em>Dicrocoelium rileyi</em> (Digenea: Dicrocoelidae) parasitizing <em>Tadarida brasiliensis</em> (Chiroptera: Molosiidae) in Mexico]]> Abstract: Fifty-five adult Dicrocoelium rileyiMacy, 1931 parasitizing Tadarida brasiliensis (Geoffroy, 1824) from Durango, Nuevo Leon, Puebla, Zacatecas and Mexico State were morphologically described and morphometrically analyzed. To evaluate the degree of variation among populations from the five localities, 27 morphometric measures of this species were transformed into an orthogonal factor by principal component analysis (PCA), and a posterior comparison among populations was performed using discriminant analysis of principal components (DAPC). Significant differences were observed with exceptions between the Puebla – Zacatecas and Nuevo Leon – Mexico State populations when forming three groups with an 88 % assignation. The Durango population was the most dissimilar population. These results show that the morphological traits of D. rileyi are variable among the populations in this study due to local intraspecific variation; however, some of the specimens present in the distinct localities may represent different species. Molecular analysis is necessary to accurately define whether the populations involved in our study constitute one or several species. <![CDATA[Biodiversity of the Neotropical Larginae (Hemiptera: Pyrrhocoroidea: Largidae): Description of a new genus and new species]]> Abstract: A new genus of Larginae (Largidae), Parvacinocoris, is described to include a new species from Argentina and Paraguay, and P. stehliki (Doesburg) new combination, a species previously placed in Acinocoris, previously known from Surinam and Venezuela and in this paper recorded also from Brazil, Colombia and Guatemala. This new genus is similar to Acinocoris however it may be separated by the smaller size, the shorter antennae, the immaculate abdominal sterna, the shape of the parameres, and the presence of a pair of hook‐like processes on the aedeagal conjunctiva. Photographs of dorsal and lateral habitus of both sexes as well as the male genitalia of the new species are included. <![CDATA[Parasitism of the isopod <em>Riggia puyensis</em> Rodríguez-Haro et al. in two armored catfish from Pastaza Province (Ecuador)]]> Abstract: Riggia puyensis, an ectoparasitic isopod, was collected in juvenile Chaetostoma breve and Chaetostoma microps host specimens from the Amazonian region of Ecuador. The aim of this work is to study the possible injury that the parasite causes in its host. R. puyensis was found covered by a fold of the skin, which formed a sort of pocket or pouch within the host’s peritoneal cavity. The alterations described in the epidermis were associated with the mechanical action of the isopod inside the pouch. <![CDATA[Naming structures and qualifying properties of anuran bioacoustical signals: a call for a homology-based nomenclature and equality for quantitative data]]> Abstract: There is a significant interest for using call features in taxonomic and systematic studies. However, the indiscriminate use of alternative terms for the acoustic structures has precluded reliable comparisons among species without directly checking recordings of all compared species. Recent attempts of nomenclature standardization have focused on term and structure definitions instead of homology. Here, we argue that application of nomenclatural propositions based on universal similarities is pragmatically difficult (likely impossible) and, most importantly, inaccurate regarding to assessment of homology. If homology is not properly assessed, nomenclature can lead to artificial groupings, which can hamper our understanding of the natural world. As a solution, we propose a guideline to first assess homology correspondence and then apply adequate terms to bioacoustical structures. This assessment follows the same homology criteria used to other phenotypical structures, such as morphological ones, and their successful application depend on the comprehension of the acoustic characteristics of the structures and on sampling intermediate forms. Additionally, we point out that there is no biological difference between traits presented qualitatively or quantitatively, and, some of the issues assumedly related to quantitative features are actually related to polymorphism and overlap of trait variation between taxa. <![CDATA[Ecological niche modeling of <em>Schinus molle</em> reveals the risk of invasive species expansion into biodiversity hotspots]]> Abstract: Invasive species need a closer look on the threats they may cause to the environment, mainly considering the scenario of climatic changes predicted for the next decades. Schinus molle is a pioneer tree native from South America, reported as an important invasive species in four continents. Using ecological niche modeling we show that a wide area over the world is propitious for S. molle establishment under current climatic conditions, including 14 of the 25 world’s biodiversity hotspots. Current projections of climate changes suggest scenarios implying the rise of areas favorable for S. molle expansion. Therefore, particular attention should be taken in regions where it was introduced, while approaches for long-term intervention may be necessary for regions of S. molle natural occurrence if its expansion threatens other native species. However, the natural dynamic of the ecosystems should be studied and contemplated in such regions. <![CDATA[<em>In vitro</em> generation of human monocyte-derived dendritic cells methodological aspects in a comprehensive review]]> Abstract: Dendritic cells (DCs) initiate and shape both innate and adaptive immune responses. They are specialized in antigen presentation to naive T cells, thereby orchestrating the T cell immune responses. Human peripheral blood and tissues contain several subsets of phenotypically and functionally distinct DCs, which promote interactions between the external environment and lymphoid organs. Because of the difficulty in purifying these cells, in vitro studies only became more frequent when Frederica Sallusto and Antonio Lanzavecchia developed a method to generate DCs from blood monocytes in vitro. Nowadays a wide range of biotechnological innovations has allowed the study of DCs and their precursors in the most diverse situations faced by the immune system. As a result of such studies, monocyte-derived dendritic cells (MDDC) are presently used in clinical protocols for the treatment of a variety of diseases, including cancer and human immunodeficiency virus infection. We summarize recent advances in the understanding of methodologies and inputs used in protocols to differentiate DCs from blood monocytes in vitro. <![CDATA[First record of dorsal and anal fin deformities in blue tang <em>Acanthurus coeruleus</em> (Acanthuridae, Actinopterygii) from northeastern Brazil]]> Abstract: Dorsal and anal fin deformities in the blue tang Acanthurus coeruleus are reported for the first time from northeastern Brazil, based on observations during research dives at an artificial reef. Possible causative factors are discussed. <![CDATA[An Update on the Occurrence and Damage Caused to Cashew by <em>Gypona cerea</em> DeLong & Freytag (Hemiptera: Cicadellidae) in Northeastern Brazil]]> Abstract: We have identified specimens of the leafhopper Gypona cerea DeLong &amp; Freytag (Cicadellidae: Iassinae: Gyponini) collected from a crop of dwarf cashew (Anacardium occidentale Linnaeus 1753) located in Canto do Buriti, Piauí, Northeastern Brazil. The damage caused to the crop included inflorescences covered with sticky exudates, presence of sooty mold, and yellowing and drying of new shoots and inflorescences. Such documentation serves as a warning about possible outbreaks of infestation in the region and the likelihood of its expansion to other cashew producing areas. <![CDATA[Genotoxicity, anti-melanoma and antioxidant activities of <em>Hymenaea courbaril</em> L. seed extract]]> Abstract: Hymenaea courbaril has been used to treat different diseases, although its properties are yet to be scientifically validated. The objective of this study was to determine the cytotoxicity, genotoxicity, antigenotoxicity and antioxidant potentials of hydroethanolic extract from H. courbaril seeds. Therefore, for the cytotoxicity test an anti-melanoma assay was performed in B16F10 strain cells. The genotoxicity and antigenotoxicity was evaluated in bone marrow cells (Permit number: 002/2010) of mice, the antioxidant activity was determined by the DPPH test and the total flavonoid content was also determined. The hydroethanolic extract showed antigenotoxic effect and antioxidant activity. It was verified that total flavonoid content was 442.25±18.03 mg RE/g dry extract. HPLC-PAD chromatogram revealed presence of flavones as majority compound in evaluated extract. The results allowed us to also infer that the hydroethanolic extract from seeds shows cytotoxic activity against B16F10 melanoma cells line and it has dose-and-time-dependency. <![CDATA[Physiological responses of soybean (<em>Glycine max</em> (L.) Merrill) cultivars to copper excess]]> Abstract Abstract: Successive applications of copper fungicides on vines have resulted in increased copper content in vineyard soils over the years. This high copper content has affected the growth of young vines in eradicated vineyards. Thus, the cultivation of annual species for a few years is an alternative to copper phytostabilization, because it would be a good way to decrease copper availability to plants. The aim of this study was to evaluate the physiological responses of different soybean cultivars to copper concentration increase. Four different soybean cultivars were grown under three copper concentrations: 0.5, 20 and 40 μM in nutrient solution. The main outcomes of this study were: i) Cultivar M 6410 IPRO recorded the highest photosynthetic rate when plants were exposed to 40 μM of copper in the nutrient solution; ii) plants in cultivar M 6410 IPRO accumulated large copper concentrations in their roots although did not decrease the root dry mass, possibly due to the higher superoxide dismutase activity; iii) cultivar DM 5958 RSF IPRO recorded drastically reduced photosynthetic rate and dry mass production due to copper excess. We conclude that each cultivar responded differently to the excess of copper, but none of them showed tolerance to it. <![CDATA[First record of growth rings for 11 native subtropical anuran species of South America]]> Abstract: Skeletochronology is the most accurate method to estimate a population age structure. The methodology is based on the analysis of secondary bone tissue in order to count growth rings. This study aimed to provide initial data, allowing researchers to further work out in the age of individuals and populations, sampling evidence of the presence of growth rings in 11 native species (representing nine families) of a subtropical region of southern Brazil. Four bone samples of each specimen were used to perform the skeletochronological analysis: the penultimate phalanges of the 3rd and 4th fingers, the humerus, and the femur. The presence of growth rings was confirmed in the periosteal layer of the bones of all analyzed species. In comparison with phalanges, growth rings of humeri and femora are more irregular and less distinguishable. This is the first record of growth rings to the native species herein analised. The skeletochronology was proved to be an effective tool in determining the age of anuran amphibians from a subtropical region, since this environment presents well defined climatic seasonality. <![CDATA[First record of <em>Dichelyne (Dichelyne) bonacii</em> (Nematoda, Cucullanidae) parasitizing the intestine of two species of lutjanid fish (Perciformes, Lutjanidae) on the northeast Brazilian coast]]> Abstract: Lutjanids are marine fish and commonly inhabit coral reefs, which have migratory habits and feed in a general way, due to these characteristics, are susceptible to infections by parasites, such as cuculanid nematodes. This work aimed to report for the first time, the occurrence of Dichelyne (Dichelyne) bonacii in Brazil, in two new hosts, Lutjanus analis and Rhomboplites aurorubens, acquired from local artisanal fishermen at the Aracaju city public fishing terminal (10 ° 54’17 “S37 ° 2’56” W), northeast coast of Brazil. Adult nematodes were collected from the intestinal tract of the hosts, clarified in Aman’s Lactophenol and were briefly described here. Three adult males and five gravid females were found, indicating that the two species of fish acted as definitive hosts. Currently, this species of parasite has been reported only from fish collected in the coast of Mexico, which makes this work the first record of this parasite in Brazilian coastal waters. The results show that probably the range of hosts and the distribution of D. (Dichelyne) bonacii is not as restricted as data pointed in the literature, being a little wider, extending also to waters that bathe the Brazilian coast. <![CDATA[<em>Rhinoxenus</em> (Dactylogyridae) parasitizing piranhas (Serrasalmidae) at its southernmost limit of distribution (Paraná River, Argentina), with the description of two new species]]> Abstract Abstract: Three piranha species, Serrasalmus maculatus, S. marginatus and Pygocentrus nattereri, living sympatrically in the lower Paraná River (Argentina) were examined searching for nasal monogeneans to know its diversity and distribution. Four species of monogeneans belonging to Rhinoxenus were found parasitizing the nasal cavities. Two new species are described, and new morphological data of 2 previously described species is provided. Rhinoxenus argentinensis n. sp. is characterized by having the male copulatory organ (MCO) as a coiled tube with a reel shaped-base; an elongated accessory piece articulated to base of MCO; a sinistral vagina with a sclerotized vestibule, and a sclerotized cap of the ventral anchor laterally modified forming a triangular expansion. Rhinoxenus paranaensis n. sp. is characterized by having a MCO as a coiled tube with a reel-shaped base; an accessory piece with an elongate proximal portion, a dilated distal portion with digitiform projections articulated to base of MCO; a sinistral vagina with 5-6 cuticular spine-shaped processes, and a sclerotized cap of the ventral anchor modified laterally forming a bilobate expansion. Additionally, multivariate discriminant analyses showed significant morphometric differences in the ventral anchors among Rhinoxenus species parasitizing ‘piranhas ’. <![CDATA[Range distribution and contributions to taxonomy of <em>Elops smithi</em> (ELOPIFORMES: ELOPIDAE)]]> Abstract: This study presents the first record of Elops smithi for northern Brazil. The evidence suggests this species is being misidentified incorrectly as Elops saurus in estuaries of the Western Atlantic Ocean. Here, morphological, molecular, and cytogenetic evidence identified all ladyfish specimens from one estuary in the region as E. smithi. Thus, at least Elops smithi occurs in the northern coast of Brazil and it is recommended that specimens from this region identified as E. saurus be further investigated with genetic and cytogenetic tools in order to assure a correct species identification. <![CDATA[The protective effects of β-sitosterol and vermicularin from <em>Thamnolia vermicularis</em> (Sw.) Ach. against skin aging <em>in vitro</em>]]> Abstract: Aged skin, featured with dryness and wrinkles, has received mounting attention due to its adverse influences on beauty. β-Sitosterol and vermicularin are two common active ingredients of Thamnolia vermicularis (Sw.) Ach., a traditional Chinese medicine, of which the anti-aging effect has been discovered. Their protective performance against skin aging was assayed by co-culturing with skin cells in this work. Results showed that β-sitosterol promoted the biosynthesis of hyaluronic acid by increasing the expression of hyaluronic acid synthases in fibroblasts and enhanced the expression of skin barrier functional proteins including aquaporin 3, loricrin, filaggrin and involucrin in keratinocytes, which conduced to the moisture retention within skin. Moreover, vermicularin might function as an anti-wrinkle agent by preventing the loss of collagen type I. Specifically, vermicularin reduced the amount of reactive oxygen species within hydrogen-peroxide-induced fibroblasts; together with suppressing the activation of mitogen-activated protein kinases, it could inhibit the production of matrix metalloproteinases-1. The present research will contribute to the development of the compounds as anti-aging ingredients for future applications in cosmetic formulations and functional food as well as promote further studies of raw materials containing alike compounds. <![CDATA[Evaluation of a rat model of exercise-induced fatigue using treadmill running with progressively increasing load]]> Abstract: The mechanism behind exercise-induced fatigue is a significant topic in the field of sports physiology. Therefore, establishing and evaluating an acute exercise-induced fatigue animal model that explores the limits of the motor system may provide greater insight into these mechanisms. Heart rate is an important quantitative parameter that accurately reflects the immediate change in physical function due to exercise load. And there is likely to be an important correlation between heart rate and behavioral performance. In this study, changes in heart rate and behavioral indexes during exercise-induced fatigue were quantitatively analyzed in rats using heart rate telemetry and video methods respectively. The behavioral indexes were used as independent variables and the degree of fatigue was used as the forecast value. Ternary quadratic function curve fitting was used to deduce a formula to calculate a fatigue score: Y = 15.2548+0.4346∙xa-0.1154∙xb+0.6826∙xc+0.0044∙xa∙xb-0.0021∙xb∙xc-0.0013∙xc∙xa-0.0023∙xa2-0.0016∙xb2 (r2=0.906). It identified a linear relationship between heart rate and exercise intensity, with a plateau in heart rate occurring during difference periods. It will serve as an effective reference for the modeling of exercise-induced fatigue. In addition, it also provides a theoretical method for analyzing the correlation between peripheral and central parameters. <![CDATA[Direct analysis of vicariance in Neotropical mayflies (Ephemeroptera)]]> Abstract: The distribution of aquatic insects has been poorly explored in quantitative analyses aiming at the historical reconstruction of area relationships in the Neotropics. Ephemeroptera is an ancient group, characterized by its low vagility, and of high richness and endemicity in this region. Systematic knowledge of the group has enormously increased in the last decades, achieving a sufficient background to explore biogeographical historical patterns. Our aim is to reconstruct area history in the Neotropics using the rationale of Barrier biogeography (Hovenkamp protocol). We present eleven mayfly phylogenies, representing groups that evolved independently at least from the Jurassic (i.e., not a one-taxon history). With these groups, we conducted independent biogeographical analyses (using Vicariance Inference Program), and extracted the events that repeated in two or more clades. We found fifty-eight TVEs (Traceable Vicariant Events), from which four were found at least twice, thus constituting SVEs (Supported Vicariant Events). <![CDATA[Dominant yeasts associated to mango (<em>Mangifera indica</em>) and rose apple (<em>Syzygium malaccense</em>) fruit pulps investigated by culture-based methods]]> Abstract: The biotechnological potential of yeasts associated to different habitats in Colombia has been poorly studied, especially the yeasts associated with different plant structures. Fruit pulps are interesting substrates mainly for the growth of yeast species, that can positively affect the productivity and quality of some bioeconomic species. Therefore, the objective of this study was to identify the dominant yeast species associated with mango and rose apple fruit pulps in Cali, Colombia. A total of 90 isolates were obtained, which were grouped considering their colony morphology. The D1/D2 domain of the large ribosomal RNA gene (LSU rRNA gene) or internal transcribed spacer (ITS) 1, ribosomal gene 5.8S and ITS 2 (ITS) regions of one to several representative isolates from each group was sequenced and compared with type strains for identification. The species Hanseniaspora thailandica, H. opuntiae and Clavispora lusitaniae were reported as shared by both fruits, specific for rose apple (H. uvarum, Pichia terricola, Rhodosporidiobolus ruineniae and Candida albicans), or for Mango (Meyerozyma caribbica, M. guilliermondii, C. natalensis, Aureobasidium pullulans, Pichia sp., Saturnispora diversa and C. jaroonii). Two morphotypes were not identified at the taxonomic level of species and were reported as candidates for new species, belonging to the genera Wickerhamomyces and Pichia. <![CDATA[Vitamin B6 reduces oxidative stress in lungs and liver in experimental sepsis]]> Abstract Abstract: Sepsis is a life-threatening organ dysfunction induced by a disrupted host response to infecting pathogens. Inflammation and oxidative stress are intrinsically related to sepsis progression and organ failure. Vitamin B6 is an important cellular cofactor for metabolic processes and has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. We aimed at evaluating the effect of vit B6 on inflammation and oxidative stress markers in the liver and lung of rats subjected to a relevant animal model of polymicrobial sepsis. Adult male Wistar rats were submitted to cecal ligation and perforation model and immediately after sepsis induction, vit B6 was administered as a single dose (600 mg/kg, subcutaneous). Twenty-four hours later, the lung and liver were harvest for neutrophil infiltration, oxidative markers to lipids and protein and antioxidant activity of endogenous enzyme. Vitamin B6 diminished neutrophil infiltration in both organs, oxidative markers in the liver and restored catalase activity levels in the lung of septic animals. Vitamin B6 exerts anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects in peripheral organs after polymicrobial sepsis. <![CDATA[Diosmin induces caspase-dependent apoptosis in human glioblastoma cells]]> Abstract: Diosmin is a flavone glycoside clinically used as the main component of Daflon for the treatment of venous diseases. Several studies demonstrated that this natural compound can induce apoptosis in different tumors. However, isolated diosmin has not been studied regarding its effects on glioblastoma so far. Since glioblastoma is a highly lethal and fast-growing brain tumor, new therapeutic strategies are urgently needed. Herein, we evaluated the role of this flavonoid against glioblastoma cells using in vitro assays. Diosmin significantly reduced the viability of GBM95, GBM02, and U87MG glioblastoma cells, but not of healthy human astrocytes, as verified by MTT assay. Vimentin immunostaining showed that diosmin induced morphological changes in GBM95 and GBM02 cells, making them smaller and more polygonal. Diosmin did not inhibit GBM95 and GBM02 cell proliferation, but it caused DNA fragmentation, as verified by the TUNEL assay, and increased cleaved caspase-3 expression in these cells. In summary, diosmin is able to induce caspase-dependent apoptosis specifically in tumor cells and, therefore, could be considered a promising therapeutic compound against glioblastoma. <![CDATA[<em>Zingiber officinale</em> formulation reduces hepatic injury and weight gain in rats fed an unhealthy diet]]> Abstract: This study investigated the ability of formulation containing Zingiber officinale (ginger) to reverse health changes promoted by unhealthy diet in Wistar rats. Five compounds from the gingerol family and three from the shogaol family were identified in the chromatographic analyzes of the extract. The animals were fed a combination of unhealthy foods, the cafeteria diet, which promoted increases in body weight, hepatocyte nucleus area, total hepatocyte area and liver fat accumulation, as well as reduced hepatic glutathione S-transferase concentration, compared to the control group, which received commercial chow. The treatment with ginger improved all these results, highlighting the reduction of 10% of body weight and 66% of the total area of lipid droplets deposited, compared to the group that received the cafeteria diet. Ginger treatments also attenuated lipid peroxidation, with a mean reduction of 41% in malondialdehyde levels and a mean increase of 222% in glutathione S-transferase activity in the liver. The cafeteria diet and ginger extract did not promote significant changes in glycemic and lipid profile, liver weight and liver enzymes compared to the control group. We suggest that ginger can have beneficial effects on health complications associated with unhealthy diet, such as excessive adiposity, oxidative stress and hepatic injury. <![CDATA[Multicomponent training with different frequencies on body composition and physical fitness in obese children]]> Abstract: Introduction: The aim of the study was to compare the effects of ten-week multicomponent training with different exercise frequencies on body composition (BC) and physical fitness (PF) in overweight and obese young children. Methods: 40 children, aged 12-15 (14.77±1.49), were randomly selected and assigned to experimental groups to train three times/week (EG1) or two times/week (EG2) for 10 weeks and a CG group (no training program). Results: It was shown that experimental groups (EG1 and EG2) improved similarly aerobic capacity (3.8% and 3.5%, respectively), muscular strength (29.7% and 25.2%), flexibility (6.1% and 9.9%), body mass index (5.0% and 4.6%), and body fat (6.4% and 5.6%) from pre- to post-training. CG group showed no significant improvements on BC and PF variables. Conclusion: Short-term multicomponent training seems to be effective on PF improvements, independently of the exercise frequency, in overweight and obese young children. However, it seems to be more effective to perform a multicomponent exercise training three times/week to improve muscular strength, body mass index, and decrease body fat percentage. This knowledge should be considered by professionals in physical education or youth sport in order to adapt practical tasks depending on the training purposes. <![CDATA[Synthesis, characterization and antimicrobial activity of Cr (III), Co (II) and Ni (II) complexes with 2-thiazoline-2-tiol derivative ligands against bacteria and yeasts of clinical importance]]> Abstract: Four novel Cr (III), Co (II) and Ni (II) complexes with 2-thiazoline-2-tiol derivative ligands were synthesized and characterized using elemental, physiochemical, and spectroscopy analytical methods. The results showed the formation of ligands coordinated by sulfur atoms of the C = S bond to the L1 ligand and by the sulfur atom of the C-S bond and/or nitrogen of the intra C-ring bond of the L2 ligand. The activity of the complexes against Gram-negative, Gram-positive bacteria and yeasts of clinical importance was evaluated by broth microdilution method. The best result was obtained to L2-Ni compound against E. cloacae (Minimal Inhibitory Concentration (MIC) = 62.5 µg/mL). Additionally, the compounds showed anti-Candida activity (MIC values ranging from 250 to 500 µg/mL), except the L1-Cr that was not active against any tested microorganism. <![CDATA[Phytogenic as feed additive for suckling dairy calves’ has a beneficial effect on animal health and performance]]> Abstract: The aim of this study was to evaluate whether the use phytogenic as feed additive of Holstein calves could exert beneficial effects on animal health and performance. Thirty newborn calves were randomly divided into two groups (control and treated), and the treated consisted of 10 g of the phytogenic product diluted in milk once a day for 30 days. Blood and fecal samples were collected, and fecal score was performed daily in order to determine the occurrence of diarrhea. Treated calves showed higher hematocrit on days 45 and 60 of life. Serum levels of urea, total proteins, globulins and glucose were lower in the treated group on day 60 of life, while triglycerides were lower on days 15 and 60 of life. Serum glutathione S-transferase activity was higher in treated animals on day 60 of life. Fecal bacterial count was lower in treated animals on days 30 and 60 of life. The weight gain was higher in treated animals on days 60 and 210 of life. Based on these results, it is possible to conclude that the addition of phytogenic as feed additive for calves was able to minimize fecal bacterial infections and to increase body weight gain. <![CDATA[The effect of newly initiated exercise training on dynamic thiol / disulphide homeostasis in sedentary obese adults]]> Abstract: We studied dynamic thiol/disulphide homeostasis, an indicator of oxidative stress, to investigate the effects of newly initiated exercise training on sedentary obese adults. Seventeen sedentary obese adults and 15 normal-weight controls were included in the sample for this study. The obese adults were given a physical exercise training program that lasted twelve weeks. Before and after the exercise training program, blood samples were collected, and serum thiol/disulphide parameters were measured by using a novel technique. Before the start of the exercise training, it was observed that thiol/disulphide homeostasis was impaired, and this impairment was positively correlated with body mass index in sedentary obese adults because of the higher reactive oxygen species production in adipose tissue. However, while the obese participants’ body mass index significantly decreased, the thiol/disulphide homeostasis parameters in the obese adults did not change over time as calculated at the baseline and compared to the calculation after the twelve weeks of exercise training. Despite a decrease in body mass index that occurred after the twelve weeks of exercise training, there was a lack of improvement in the obesity-induced impairment of thiol/disulphide homeostasis, which suggests that a newly initiated exercise training program may lead to oxidative stress. <![CDATA[Exudate - phenolphthalein pH test for evaluation of validity in seeds of <em>Libidibia ferrea</em>]]> Abstract: Seed companies are looking for promising, quick and effective alternatives to determine the physiological quality of seeds. The objective of the current work was to study the efficiency of the exudate - phenolphthalein pH test to evaluate the seeds of two lots of Libidibia ferrea (Mart. ex Tul.) L. P. Queiroz var. ferrea. The statistical design for the the exudate - phenolphthalein pH test was completely randomized with four replicates of 50 seeds in a factorial design (2 x 5), two seed lots and five soaking periods (30, 60, 90, 120, and 150 minutes), respectively, using two constant temperatures (25 and 30°C). The percentage of viability and germination of the seeds did not differ in the temperatures of 25 and 30°C and in the soaking periods by the exudate - phenolphthalein pH test. Thus, it is recommended that the test be conducted for at least 30 minutes in distilled and deionized water at the constant temperature of 25 or 30°C to evaluate the vigor of the Libidibia ferrea. <![CDATA[Dietary iron chelate for sows and effects on iron supplementation in piglets]]> Abstract: In order to evaluate iron chelate in diets for sows during gestation and lactation and its effects on iron supplementation for piglets, a total of 50 pregnant sows in the third parity order were distributed according to a randomized block design with two treatments: diet without iron chelate supplementation (n=20); diet supplemented with 0.15% of iron chelate (n=30). The litters of sows were distributed into five different treatments: sows without iron chelate supplementation and piglets receiving intramuscular iron-dextran; sows without iron chelate supplementation and piglets receiving oral iron supplementation; sows supplemented with iron chelate and piglets receiving intramuscular iron-dextran; sows supplemented with iron chelate and piglets receiving oral iron supplementation; sows supplemented with iron chelate and piglets without iron supplementation. No influence of dietary supplementation of iron chelate was verified on the productive parameters of the sows. For the piglets, iron-dextran supplementation promoted higher weaning weight in comparison to non-supplemented piglets, although not differing to those received oral iron supplementation. Thus, iron chelate supplementation did not improve the productive parameters of sows, but it increased iron excretion in the feces, thus requiring iron supplementation for the piglets after birth. <![CDATA[Spatial distribution of wood volume in Brazilian savannas]]> Abstract: Here we model and describe the wood volume of Cerrado Sensu Stricto, a highly heterogeneous vegetation type in the Savanna biome, in the state of Minas Gerais, Brazil, integrating forest inventory data with spatial-environmental variables, multivariate regression, and regression kriging. Our study contributes to a better understanding of the factors that affect the spatial distribution of the wood volume of this vegetation type as well as allowing better representation of the spatial heterogeneity of this biome. Wood volume estimates were obtained through regression models using different environmental variables as independent variables. Using the best fitted model, spatial analysis of the residuals was carried out by selecting a semivariogram model for generating an ordinary kriging map, which in turn was used with the fitted regression model in the regression kriging technique. Seasonality of both temperature and precipitation, along with the density of deforestation, explained the variations of wood volume throughout Minas Gerais. The spatial distribution of predicted wood volume of Cerrado Sensu Stricto in Minas Gerais revealed the high variability of this variable (15.32 to 98.38 m3 ha-1) and the decreasing gradient in the southeast-northwest direction. <![CDATA[Resistance of the wild tomato <em>Solanum habrochaites</em> to <em>Phytophthora infestans</em> is governed by a major gene and polygenes]]> Abstract: This work aimed to study the inheritance of resistance to Phytophthora infestans in tomato plants, using the maximum likelihood estimation function. The susceptible cultivar Santa Clara (Solanum lycopersicum) was used as the female genitor and the P. infestans resistant S. habrochaites f. glabratum accession (BGH 6902) as the male genitor. F1 plants from the crossing were self-pollinated to produce F2 progenies, and also backcrossed with PR and PS to produce BC1:R and BC1:S generations, respectively. The tomato plants were inoculated 50 days after transplanting. Disease severity was evaluated via a diagrammatic scale. Comparison of the genetic models created using the maximum likelihood function revealed that the inheritance of resistance to P. infestans in S. habrochaites is conferred by a major gene with additive and dominance effects, polygenes with additive effects, plus the environmental effect. Vertical resistance can be explored using genes with major effects. Programs of recurrent and maker-assisted selection are considered efficient strategies with which to select genotypes that hold P. infestans resistance conferred by polygenes. <![CDATA[Diametric Growth of Tree Species in the Atlantic Forest, Paraná, Brazil]]> Abstract: Management of remnants in Atlantic Forest is an alternative for their conservation, however, information on the growth and ecology of those species is lacking. This study aimed to describe diametric growth of Balfourodendron riedelianum, Cordia trichotoma and Ocotea diospyrifolia based on its growth rings and to verify the relationship between this growth with the environmental characteristics in different altitude levels and forest types. Diametric growth was higher for the largest tree diameters of the three species. Based on the fitted growth model, the age in which mean annual increment in diameter becomes greater than the current annual increment was 55 years for B. riedelianum (DBH = 18.27 cm), 45 years for C. trichotoma (DBH = 26.56 cm) and 44 years for O. diospyrifolia (DBH = 26.05 cm). Environmental conditions and forest types affected diametric growth of these species. B. riedelianum and O. diospyrifolia showed higher diametric growth in plain regions with higher fertility soil and few frosts. C. trichotoma was negatively affected by low water availability in winter at lower altitudes and showed higher diametric growth at higher altitudes, where soil fertility is low but there is well-drainage, high rainfall and high relative humidity during the dry season. <![CDATA[Probiotic, antibiotic and combinations in Nile tilapia juveniles culture]]> Abstract: This study aimed to evaluate the effect of the commercial probiotic (Saccharomyces cerevisiae), antibiotic (florfenicol), and its combination for Nile tilapia culture. The experiment was arranged in a completely randomized design with five replications, and five treatments diets: Control: water and diet without additives; YD: yeast in the diet (1 g Kg-1); AW: antibiotic in the water (0.002 g L-1); AWYD: antibiotic in the water, and yeast in the diet (0.002 g L-1 and 1 g Kg-1); and AD: antibiotic in the diet (0.01 g kg-1). The growth parameters as total and standard length, weight, weight gain, biomass, Fulton’s condition factor, specific growth rate and plasma cortisol of tilapia did not show the difference between the treatments. The survival rates and food conversion rate of fish were greater in treatment with florfenicol included in the diet. The commercial probiotic did not improve growth or survival. The administration of the antibiotic florfenicol in the water needs more studies. The inclusion of the antibiotic in the diet promotes growth and survival in Nile tilapia juvenile. <![CDATA[Soil microbial C:N:P ratio across physiognomies of Brazilian Cerrado Soil microbial biomass across a gradient of preserved native Cerrado]]> Abstract: Different physiognomies across the Cerrado could influence the microbial C:N:P ratio in the soil since these physiognomies present different abundance and diversity of plant species. Thus, the aim of this study was to evaluate the microbial C:N:P ratio in soil across three different physiognomies of Cerrado in the Northeast, Brazil, namely campo graminóide (dominance of grasses), cerrado stricto sensu (dominance of grasses, shrubs, low trees, and woody stratum), and cerradão (dominance of woody stratum). Campo graminóide was characterized by lower values of total organic C, N, microbial C:P, N:P, and soil C:N. Cerrado stricto sensu presented average values for most of the measured parameters, while cerradão presented higher values of microbial C, N, P, organic C, N and soil C:P and C:N ratios. The principal component analysis showed that the samples grouped according to the sites, with a clear gradient from campo graminóide to cerradão. Therefore, the differences of vegetation across physiognomies of Cerrado influenced the soil microbial C:N:P ratio, where cerradão showed highest microbial C:N:P ratio than soil under campo graminóide. <![CDATA[Is arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal species community affected by cotton growth management systems in the Brazilian Cerrado?]]> Abstract: Conventional cotton production in western Bahia, Brazil, involves intensive use of agricultural inputs and mechanization, which may affect arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF). This work aimed at studying the impact of conventional and organic cotton production in the AMF of western Bahia. Soil samples were obtained from conventional white cotton and colored cotton organic production systems as well as from native Cerrado areas, close to the white cotton fields, and from the subcaducifolia vegetation, close to the organic colored cotton farms. The most frequent species in the conventional farming areas belonged to the genera Acaulospora (10 spp.); Glomus (8 spp.); Dentiscutata (3 spp.); Ambispora, Pacispora and Scutellospora (2 spp. each), as well as Claroideoglomus etunicatum, Diversispora sp., Entrophospora infrequens, Gigaspora sp., Orbispora pernambucana, Paradentiscutata maritima, and Paraglomus occultum. Eighteen species were found in the organic farming areas, with the predominance of Glomus (5 spp.) and Acaulospora (5 spp.), and with Claroideoglomus, Dentiscutata, Gigaspora, Corymbiglomus, Orbispora, Paraglomus, Scutellospora, and Simiglomus (1 spp. each). Paraglomus bolivianum was first reported in Cerrado. In the native vegetation, nine species were found, with the predominance of Glomus and Acaulospora. The highest number of AMF species was found in the organic farming areas, which deserves further investigation. <![CDATA[Agroforestry systems and understory harvest management: the impact on growth and productivity of dual-purpose wheat]]> Abstract: The objective of the study was to evaluate the growth and production efficiency of forage-grain dual-purpose wheat in two arrangements and four agroforestry systems (Intercrop-I and Intercrop-II), as well as to evaluate crop management for the wheat crops in two planting seasons (Crop Season I-2014 and Crop Season II-2015. The experiment was conducted in a randomized complete block design, factorial scheme 7x2x2, with seven cultivation systems Eucalyptus urophylla x Eucalyptus grandis Intercrop-II and Intercrop-I; Peltophorum dubium Intercrop-II and Intercrop-I; P. rigida Intercrop-I; S. parahyba Intercrop-I; a wheat monoculture with no tree species present; and two harvest management techniques (with and without harvesting of the forage species). Agroforestry systems generated shading for wheat plants, with a higher phyllochron and lower values of leaf area index of those individuals kept under trees with higher crown shading (non-deciduous trees) due to the lower transmissivity of solar radiation. The systems composed with Schizolobium parahyba in Intercrop-I and Parapiptadenia rigida in Intercrop-I provide a minor phyllochron to the wheat, resulting in a higher leaf area index and dry matter yield. Thus, the cultivation of tree species and dual-skilled agricultural crops, such as wheat, provides promising alternatives for the future use of land in tropical countries. <![CDATA[Water retention capacity in Arenosols and Ferralsols in a semiarid area in the state of Bahia, Brazil]]> Abstract: One of the most serious problems in areas indicated for irrigation projects in the Brazilian Northeast region is the occurrence of sandy soils, known to have low moisture retention, but occurring in strategic locations in terms of water supply and geographical situation, and which can be used for agricultural purposes. The objective of this study was to evaluate the influence of particle size distribution and porosity on the water retention capacity of sandy soils in the semiarid area of the Northeast region. Soil bulk and particle densities, total porosity (macro, meso and microporosity), field capacity, permanent wilting point and soil-water retention curve were determined in samples of surface (A) and subsurface (C or Bw) horizons of ten sandy soil profiles. Particle size was determined subdividing the sand fraction into five classes. Higher amounts of the medium and fine sand fractions of the studied soils oriented their physical and hydric characteristics, being responsible for their great water retention. The arrangement of the fine silt, clay, fine sand and very fine sand particles may have provided a diversity of pore sizes and a good pore distribution, being responsible for the large proportion of micropores in the soils, allowing great water retention capacities. <![CDATA[Energy balance and CO<sub>2</sub> emission in mechanized biomass harvesting in pine stands under thinning]]> Abstract: Biomass is an important component of the Brazilian energy matrix, with a potential contribution of co-products from thinned forests. The aim of this work was to evaluate the energy balance and CO2 potential emission in mechanized biomass harvesting operations in Pinus taeda stands at 9 and 10 years-old and under thinning, searching to support the use of co-product biomass from thinning as a renewable energy source. Thinning was carried out through cut-to-length harvesting method, in which large logs for sawmill and small logs for energy were produced. In addition, tops, needles, barks, and branches were considered as co-products. The balance between consumed energy and emitted CO2 by machines for thinning in relationship to the energy and CO2 in thinned biomass was estimated. Thus, dry matter, energy potential, and CO2 potential emission were evaluated and compared considering thinning stand ages as treatments. Mechanized thinning consumes a large energy and produces CO2, however, the energy consumed by machines is lower than 1% of the estimated energy potential in thinned biomass, while the CO2 emission is lower than 0.5% of the biomass. Therefore, the use of co-product biomass of thinning is an important way to mitigate greenhouse gas emission. <![CDATA[Metabolic responses to dietary carbohydrate/lipids ratios in neotropical hybrid catfish (♂<em>Pseudoplatystoma corruscans</em>×♀<em>Pseudoplatystoma fasciatum</em>)]]> Abstract: The purpose of this study was to assess the effect of different carbohydrate and lipid (CHO/L) ratios on the performance and energy metabolism of hybrid catfish (♂Pseudoplatystoma corruscans × ♀ Pseudoplatystoma fasciatum). One hundred and sixty-eight fish (104.9±16.5 g BW) were distributed into 24 100-L tanks. The experiment was performed using a randomised block design with four CHO/L ratios (0.45, 1.00, 1.66 and 2.85) and six replications. Growth performance, protein content, glucose and triglycerides in plasma, muscle and liver, and the hepatic activity of the malic and glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) enzymes were measured after 60 feeding days. No significant differences were observed in growth performance, protein and triglycerides of plasma and muscle, hepatic protein or malic enzyme activity. CHO/L: 2.85 provided the highest plasma and liver glucose, while CHO/L: 0.45 showed high liver triglycerides. A linear effect was found for the hepatic activity of G6PD and dietary starch levels (R2=0.93). The hepatic activity of G6PD was greater in CHO/L=2.85 than for CHO/L: 0.45. In conclusion, the limit of dietary starch inclusion and lipids were 15% and 9.00%, respectively (CHO/L: 1.66), and this level did not affect the energy metabolism of the juvenile hybrid catfish. <![CDATA[Sugarcane inoculated with endophytic diazotrophic bacteria: effects on yield, biological nitrogen fixation and industrial characteristics]]> Abstract: The growing need for the use of clean energy has led society to seek alternatives to fossil fuels in order to less pollute the environment. Sugarcane has been known to produce enough biomass and to have associative microorganisms, such as plant growth-promoting bacteria (PGPB), which have the potential to improve the yield of crops. The objective of this study is to evaluate the efficiency and the isotopic dilution of 15N of microbial inoculants containing endophytic diazotrophic bacteria, individually inoculated and in mixture, on productivity, technological quality and biological nitrogen fixation (BNF) of sugarcane variety RB92579. The experiment was conducted for three consecutive years, comprising different crop cycles, in a completely randomized block design with four replications. The evaluations were at 11 months after planting for plant-cane, and at 12 months after cutting for ratoon cane and second ratoon cane. The contribution of BNF by 15N natural abundance technique to inoculated treatments ranged from 18% to 57.31%. This study showed that no strain promoted the improvement on yield and biological nitrogen fixation during the three cycles of sugarcane (plant-cane, ratoon cane and second ratoon cane). However, industrial characteristics of sugar cane can be affectd by PGPB inoculation. <![CDATA[Histology of juvenile skin of <em>Lepidosiren paradoxa</em> Fitzinger, 1837 (Sarcopterygii, Dipnoi)]]> Abstract: The skin of three juvenile Lepidosiren paradoxa specimens was examined. The epidermis was composed of a polystratified epithelium resting on a basement membrane, including mucus-secreting cells, and a cuticle of mucopolysaccharides on the surface. Two types of skin receptors, electroreceptors and mechanoreceptors, were found; the first type was located in the dermoepidermal junction, and the second type was completely intraepiderma. The skin structure of these fish, suggests the possibility of the skin participating in the breath. <![CDATA[Feedstock and inoculum characteristics and process parameters as predictors for methane yield in mesophilic solid-state anaerobic digestion]]> Abstract: In this study, several linear regression models were tested to predict the cumulative 30-day methane yield produced in mesophilic solid-state anaerobic digestion, employing diverse lignocellulosic biomass sources. Data collected from 13 studies were utilized, totalizing 86 experimental points, divided into regression and validation. Models containing higher order terms, the inverse of variables and interactions among all eleven input variables were tested. Simple linear models utilizing a single variable were unable to describe the methane production, giving an R² lower than 0.37. However, combinations of multiple variables and its inverses as only independent variable permitted an increase in simple linear models predictive capacity up to 63% of experimental variability. Higher order models presented an improvement in predictive quality: for a fourth-order multiple linear model, a validation R² of 0.8329 was achieved. In view of the obtained results, the proposed linear regression models consist in an attractive tool to propose experimental routines and to investigate new biomass sources for methane production using solid-state anaerobic digestion, significantly reducing time and cost requirements to experiments’ execution. <![CDATA[Microbiological Indicators of Soil Quality Under Native Forests are Influenced by Topographic Factors]]> Abstract: Several microbiological indicators of soil quality present high sensitivity, but little is known about the influence of topographic factors on them. This work aimed to evaluate variability of biological indicators of soil quality across a hillslope under native forest and the influence of topographic factors on them. Four positions on a hillslope were evaluated. Activity of the enzymes β-glucosidase, acid phosphatase, urease and fluorescein diacetate (FDA) hydrolysis were determined, as well as basal and substrate-induced respiration, and density of microorganisms: total bacteria, total fungi, actinobacteria, phosphate solubilizers, ammonifiers, native rhizobia, free-living N2-fixing bacteria, spores of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi and percentage of root colonization by arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi. Activity and density of microorganisms were correlated with topographic factors. The relation of these factors to the variations of the evaluated indicators was determined using the random forest algorithm. Microbiological indicators varied according to the hillslope positions. The indicators urease, basal respiration, spore density, mycorrhizal colonization, total bacteria and fungi, phosphate solubilizers, and free-living N2-fixing bacteria detected in JNFB and FAM culture medium did not vary with terrain attributes and were therefore more indicated in cases of topographic variations. This and future studies can help to select the best microbiological indicators for different conditions. <![CDATA[Modeling residual biomass from mechanized wood harvesting with data measured by forest harvester]]> Abstract: The lack of accurate models for estimating residual biomass in wood harvesting operations results in underutilization of this co-product by forestry companies. Due to the lack of this information, forestry operations planning, such as chipping and transport logistics, are influenced, with a consequent increase in costs. Thereby, the aim of this study was to propose and evaluate statistical models to estimate residual biomass of Eucalyptus sp. in wood harvesting operations by means of tree variables measured from harvester processing head. Generalized linear models were composed through stepwise procedure for estimating residual biomass by tree covariates: diameter at breast height, commercial height, commercial limit diameter, and stem commercial volume, considering also their transformations and combinations. Residual biomass distributions with positive skew support the application of generalized linear model and Gamma distribution in random component, since normality assumption in traditional linear regression was a requirement not satisfied in this study. By stepwise procedure, tree variables associated to forest biomass were selected, whose linear combinations resulted in models with high statistical efficiency and accuracy. Thus, models developed in this study are innovative tools to estimate residual biomass in mechanized wood harvesting, in which can be inserted into harvester’s hardware to provide real-time information. <![CDATA[Low frequency of antibodies anti-<em>Neospora caninum</em> in rodents in Fernando de Noronha Island, Brazil]]> Abstract This study aimed to evaluate the frequency of Neospora caninum antibodies in rodents from the Island of Fernando de Noronha, Brazil, and to contribute to epidemiological data on neosporosis in this region. Blood samples were collected from 154 black-rats (Rattus rattus) and 12 rock-cavies (Kerodon rupestris). The search for anti-N. caninum antibodies was made using the NAT technique, with a cut-off of 1:20. The frequency of positive mice was 5.19% (8/154 - 1:20 titer) and all rock-cavies were negative. The low frequency of antibodies against N. caninum in rodents found in the Island shows the low contamination of the environment where these animals live. <![CDATA[Potential of predatory Neotropical ladybirds and minute pirate bug on strawberry aphid]]> Abstract Laboratory trials were performed to determine the impact of three Neotropical predatory coccinellids (Cycloneda sanguinea, Eriopis connexa and Coleomegilla quadrifasciata) and a minute pirate bug (Orius insidiosus) on Chaetosiphon fragaefolii, an important strawberry aphid pest. The predation on C. fragaefolii nymphs and adults, as well as the time to the first attack of all predators were compared with predation on Aphis gossypii. Predator preferences for prey and aphid defensive behavior were also evaluated. Moreover, the effect of coccinellids on C. fragaefolii population growth was assessed in experimental greenhouse conditions. The predation rate varied among predators, being significantly lower for O. insidiosus than for the coccinellids. Consumption was higher on A. gossypii than on C. fragaefolii, regardless of the aphids developmental stage. The time to the first attack of all predators was longer in the presence of C. fragaefolii. Walking away and cornicle secretion were the most common antipredator behaviors of aphid against coccinellids and O. insidiosus, respectively. Coccinellids preferred A. gossypii over C. fragaefolii, while O. insidiosus showed indifference. Cycloneda sanguinea and E. connexa exhibited the highest suppression effect on the growth rate of C. fragaefolii. Thus, the four predators evaluated could contribute to reduce strawberry aphid populations, especially C. sanguinea and E. connexa. <![CDATA[Semi-automated counting model for arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi spores using the Circle Hough Transform and an artificial neural network]]> Abstract: Arbuscular Mycorrhizae (AM) are mutualistic associations between Arbuscular Mycorrhizal Fungi (AMF) and the roots of many plant species. AMF spores give rise to filaments that develop in the root system of plants and contribute to the absorption of water and some nutrients. This article introduces a semi-automated counting model of AMF spores in slide images based on Artificial Neural Network (ANN). The semi-automated counting of AMF spores facilitates and accelerates the tasks of researchers, who still do the AMF spore counting manually. We built a representative database of spore images, processing images through the Circle Hough Transform (CHT) method and training an ANN to classify patterns automatically. The classification analysis and the performances of the proposed method against the manual method are presented in this paper. The accuracy for the identification of spores by CHT in conjunction to ANN classification in the images was 90%. The results indicate that this method can accurately detect the presence of AMF spores in images as well as count them with a high level of confidence. <![CDATA[Practical rules for summing the series of the Tweedie probability density function with high-precision arithmetic]]> Abstract: For some ranges of its parameters and arguments, the series for Tweedie probability density functions are sometimes exceedingly difficult to sum numerically. Existing numerical implementations utilizing inversion techniques and properties of stable distributions can cope with these problems, but no single one is successful in all cases. In this work we investigate heuristically the nature of the problem, and show that it is not related to the order of summation of the terms. Using a variable involved in the analytical proof of convergence of the series, the critical parameter for numerical non-convergence (“alpha”) is identified, and an heuristic criterion is developed to avoid numerical non-convergence for a reasonably large sub-interval of the latter. With these practical rules, simple summation algorithms provide sufficiently robust results for the calculation of the density function and its definite integrals. These implementations need to utilize high-precision arithmetic, and are programmed in the Python programming language. A thorough comparison with existing R functions allows the identification of cases when the latter fail, and provide further guidance to their use. <![CDATA[Effect of resin content and pressing temperature on banana pseudo-stem particle boards properties using full factorial design]]> Abstract: The volume of global gross banana exports reached a record of 117.9 million tonnes in 2015 (FAO 2017), which agro-industrial wastes derived as the pseudo-stem, rachis and leaves do not have an industrial application instead they are discarded. This research study applies full factorial design and response surface methodology to determine the effect of pressing temperature and resin content on density (D), moisture (M), water absorption (WA), water swelling (WS), module of rupture (MOR), module of elasticity (MOE) and formaldehyde content (FC) of particle board made of banana pseudo-stem. A 22 factorial design was performed, factors considered were resin and temperature. The low level of resin was 15% in the coarse fiber (CF) and 35% in fine fiber (FF); high level as 25% CF and 45% FF. Temperature levels were 150ºC and 170ºC respectively. The boards met all quality parameters except ones with low resin content that didn’t meet WS parameter. Furthermore, resin affected positively on WA, FC and MOE, and decreased D, WS and MOR values. Meanwhile, temperature affected negatively on D, WS, and increased FC, WA, MOE, MOR properties; none of the factors affected M response. Process conditions were optimized to 162.61°C and 43.15% FF, 23.97% CF. <![CDATA[An anthropological analysis about primatology – Reports of a particular human-animal relationship with Capuchin monkeys]]> Abstract: This ethnography is about a particular human-animal relationship based on primatological research on groups of wild robust capuchin monkeys living in Parque Estadual Carlos Botelho (Brazil), one of the largest preserved areas of Atlantic Tropical Forest in the world. It emphasizes the complex situations that highlight the difficulty of making this research. This space integrates administrative, scientific and local interests, producing a unique cartography. We reflect on the scientific research considering the relations among primatologist, field assistant and other animals and comparing it with the hunt. “Hunt” is a model inspired in techniques and in some aspects of recreational hunt to expand the comprehension of a complex routine defined to obtain behavior data.