Scielo RSS <![CDATA[Química Nova]]> vol. 31 num. 2 lang. en <![CDATA[SciELO Logo]]> <![CDATA[<B>Ética nas publicações científicas</B>]]> <![CDATA[<B>Characterization of incineration ashes of industrial and hospital solid waste</B>]]> Three ash samples from an incinerator in Belo Horizonte (Brazil) were physically and chemically characterized. The chemical composition of the ashes was not always the same, neither in terms of the chemical species nor in terms of the quantities of those that are common to the three ashes. The ashes called CF1 and CF3D contain heavy metals above the detection limits of the analytical methods and the zinc concentration is high enough to justify treatment of the ashes. For these ashes, a high loss on ignition was found, indicating that the process of incineration might present failures. <![CDATA[<B>Heavy atom enhanced room-temperature phosphorimetry for ultratrace determination of harmane</B>]]> Harmane has been proposed for the treatment of epilepsy, AIDS and leshmaniosis. Its room-temperature phosphorescence was induced using either AgNO3 or TlNO3, enabling absolute limits of detection of 0.12 and 2.4 ng respectively, with linear dynamic ranges extending up to 456 ng (AgNO3) and 911 ng (TlNO3). Relative standard deviations around 3% were observed for substrates containing 46 ng of harmane. Such sensitivity and precision are needed because harmane intake must be strictly controlled to achieve proper therapeutic response. Interference studies were performed using thalidomide, reserpine and yohimbine. Recovery of 104&plusmn;6% was achieved using solid surface room-temperature phosphorimetry. The result was comparable to the one obtained by micellar electrokinetic chromatography. <![CDATA[<B>Influence of the temperature and type of salt on the phase equilibrium of peg 1500 + potassium phosphate and peg 1500 + sodium citrate aqueous two-phase systems</B>]]> The present work analyzed the effect of the temperature and type of salt on the phase equilibrium of aqueous two-phase systems (ATPS) formed by poly (ethylene glycol) (PEG) 1500 + potassium phosphate, from (278.15 to 318.15) K, and PEG 1500 + sodium citrate, from (278.15 to 298.15) K. The rise of the temperature normally increased the slope of the tie line (STL). With respect to the influence of the type of salt, sodium citrate showed better capability to induce phase separation, when compared to potassium phosphate. <![CDATA[<B>Organochlorine pesticides in Piracicaba river basin (São Paulo/Brazil)</B>: <B>a survey of sediment, bivalve and fish</B>]]> The main objective of this paper was to evaluate the level of occurrence of the organochlorine compounds in samples of sediments, bivalves and two fish species collected in the Piracicaba River basin (São Paulo, Brazil). The isomers alpha and gamma of HCH and Heptachlor were most frequently detected in samples of sediments and specimens of bivalve and fish. Therefore, although the levels of these compounds found were not critically high, they are still found in the environment. This fact suggests that they are still being used, despite the fact that the use of these compounds was outlawed more than twenty years ago. <![CDATA[<B>Electrooxidation of glyphosate on niquel and copper electrodes</B>]]> The electrochemical oxidation of glyphosate on an electrode of nickel and on one of copper was studied. With both electrodes electrochemical signals related to the glyphosate concentration were observed. However, the behaviour of the copper electrode was much better than that of the nickel electrode. A calibration curve was obtained of the electrical signal of this electrode as a function of the glyphosate concentration. The detection limit was 30 µM. In the case of nickel, an increase in the oxidation signal, which is related to the glyphosate concentration, was obtained. However, the results were less reproducible and additional information is necessary to propose an interaction mechanism between glyphosate and the electrode. <![CDATA[<B>Potentiometric titrations of metal cations with edta using the Cu/Cu(II)-EDTA system as indicator electrode</B>]]> In potentiometric titrations of metal cations with EDTA the Hg/HgY2- system is usually used to detect the end point. However, the use of mercury has been discouraged in analytical procedures due to its toxicity. In this work the Cu/CuY2- system was used as indicator electrode for potentiometric titrations of some metal cations with EDTA. The solutions of Cu2+, Cd2+, Mn2+, Co2+ and Zn2+ were titrated with Na2EDTA solution in the presence of a small concentration of the CuY2- complex using a copper wire as indicator electrode. The potentiometric titrations with the Cu/CuY2- system showed good correlation when compared with an Hg/HgY2- system. <![CDATA[<B>Structured lipids from chicken fat, its atearin and medium chain triacyglycerol blends</B>: <B>I- Fatty acid and triacyglycerol compositions</B>]]> The purpose of this study is to analyze the interactions that occur in binary and ternary fat blends between medium and long chain triacylglycerols and their structured lipids obtained by chemical interesterification through the analysis of their physico-chemical properties. The synthesized structured triacylglycerols presented from 14.8 to 58.4% medium chain fatty acids, from 15.7 to 37.2% saturated fatty acids, from 19.2 to 47.5% monounsaturated fatty acids, and from 6.7 to 15.2% essential fatty acids. Chemical interesterification modified the behavior of binary and ternary mixtures and new types of triacylglycerol groups were formed. <![CDATA[<B>Structured lipids from chicken fat, its stearin, and medium chain triacyglycerol blends</B>: <B>II- softening and melting points</B>]]> The aim of the present work is to investigate the effects of blending and chemical interesterification reactions on the softening and melting behavior of chicken fat, its stearin and medium chain triacylglycerols, and blends thereof in various ratios. Chemical interesterification is a promising alternative to the current processes of modifying the physical properties of fats. In the experimental design 7 samples corresponding to 7 different blend proportions were used. The results were represented in triangular diagrams. The addition of stearin influenced the softening and melting points. The mixture response surface methodology proved to be an extremely useful tool for the optimization of the fat mixtures. <![CDATA[<B>Study of the emissions from moving sources in the metropolitan area of Porto Alegre - RS - Brazil</B>]]> The present study aims at assessing the influence of pollution from mobile sources on air quality in the Metropolitan Area of Porto Alegre by means of an inventory based on methods applied specifically to vehicular emissions. The study uses the method described by CETESB, based on inventories on vehicular emissions, according to USEPA methodology. Following fuel types were taken into account: gasoline (24% ethanol), alcohol, diesel oil, and CNG (compressed natural gas). Results have shown that gasoline-powered vehicles are still responsible for emitting the highest CO and HC concentrations, while diesel-powered vehicles are the source of highest NOx, MP and SOx concentrations. <![CDATA[<B>Main carbonyls at indor public places of Rio de Janeiro</B>]]> An air quality evaluation of indoor environments with focus on lower carbonyls was carried out in 50 public places using TO-11A methodology. Formaldehyde levels (ranging from 12.5 to 1034 mg m-3) were above the threshold limit in 49 of 50 analyzed samples while acetaldehyde (ranging from 5.2 to 840 mg m-3) and acetone (ranging from 5.5 to 4839 mg m-3) were respectively bellow the limits of OSHA and NIOSH in all samples. However all samples were bellow the threshold limits suggested by the Brazilian legislation - NR-15. A correlation study between the carbonyls and temperature and humidity was also done. <![CDATA[<B>Determination of sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim mixtures by multivariate electronic spectroscopy</B>]]> In this work a multivariate spectroscopic methodology is proposed for quantitative determination of sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim in pharmaceutical associations. The multivariate model was developed by partial least-squares regression, using twenty synthetic mixtures and the spectral region between 190 and 350 nm. In the validation stage, which involved the analysis of five synthetic mixtures, prediction errors lower that 3% were observed. The predictive capacity of the multivariate models is seriously affected by spectral changes induced by pH variations, a fact that acquires a great significance in the analysis of real samples (pharmaceuticals) that contain chemical additives. <![CDATA[<B>Synthesis, biological evaluation and molecular modeling of arylfurans as potential trypanothione reductase inhibitors</B>]]> Trypanosoma cruzi is a protozoan parasite that causes a severe disease (Chagas'disease) in Central and South America. The currently available chemotherapeutic agents against this disease are still inadequate. The enzyme trypanothione reductase (TR) is considered a validated molecular target for the development of new drugs against this parasite. In this regard, a series of arylfurans based on 2,5-bis-(4-acetamidophenyl)furan was synthesized and tested for their in vitro inhibitory activity against TR. Molecular modeling studies of putative enzyme-inhibitor complexes revealed a possible mechanism of interaction. From synthesized compounds, a benzylaminofuran derivative was found to be more active than the lead compound. <![CDATA[<B>Evaluation of the retinol concentration in UHT milk commercialized in Natal, RN</B>]]> Deficiency of micronutrients is a public health problem. Cow milk is a source of retinol. The objective of this study is to evaluate the retinol concentration in milk commercialized in Natal/RN. Ten samples were taken of each brand of UHT milk. Vitamin content was determined by HPLC using the Shimadzu LC-10 AD Chromatograph, coupled to the Shimadzu SPD 10 A UV-VIS Detector and the Shimadzu C-R6A Chromatopac Integrator with Shim-pack CLC-ODS (M) column, measuring 4.6 mm x 25 cm. The mobile phase was 100% methanol, with a flow of 1 mL/min. The mean retinol concentration varied between 22.7 &plusmn; 4.9 µg/100 mL and 44.1 &plusmn; 4.1 µg/100 mL, with the differences statistically significant (p<0.001). Only one of the 7 brands had retinol concentration below the normal requirements for human consumption. <![CDATA[<B>Optimization of the methodology for deoxynivalenol derivatization by experimental planning</B>]]> The objective of this work was to optimize the derivatization reaction for determining deoxynivalenol (DON) by gas chromatography employing an experimental planning procedure. The factors were: temperature, reaction time, catalyst and trifluoroacetic anhydride concentration. The relative peak areas were used to evaluated the effects. The best conditions for DON derivatization were 200 µL TFAA and 18 mg sodium bicarbonate for 6 min at 74 ºC for 7 to 21 µg of DON. Under these conditions, the detection limit was 1.4 µg of DON. <![CDATA[<B>Evaluation of the stability of the oxidative stress plasmatic biomarker</B>: <B>malondialdehyde</B>]]> Malondialdehyde (MDA) is one of the lipid peroxidation products widely used as indicator of cellular injury. However, the short-term and the long-term stability of this biomarker remain unclear. The objective of this work was to evaluate the stability of plasmatic MDA at -20 ºC, utilizing thiobarbituric acid (TBA) as derivative in spectrophotometric and chromatographic analysis. The results showed that MDA was stable for 24 h after blood collection, was not stable when stored after alkaline hydrolysis, remained stable for 30 days after TBA derivatization and was stable for 3 days when stored after n-butanol extraction, all at -20 ºC. <![CDATA[<B>Theoretical determination of the most stable trehalose conformations in aqueous solution</B>]]> In this work the most abundant trehalose conformers for the isolated molecule as well as for the water solvated system are selected. The theoretical tecniques employed are ab initio calculations in the gas phase and in aqueous solution using the PCM model. A conformational map is built for the glycosidic angles (phi and psi) and the search for the most abundant structures is explained. The final structures are validated by the agreement found between experimental and theoretical values for ³J H,C along the glycosidic linkage. <![CDATA[<B>Silica chemically modified with <I>p</I>-anisidine, <I>p</I>-phenytidine and <I>p</I>-phenylenediamine groups used as adsorbent for Pb<SUP>2+</SUP>, Cu<SUP>2+</SUP>, Cd<SUP>2+</SUP> and Ni<SUP>2+</SUP> in aqueous and ethanol solutions</B>]]> Silica gel was chemically modified with the aromatic amines p-anisidine, p-phenytidine and p-phenylenediamine, using grafting reactions. The resulting modified silicas were characterized by infrared spectroscopy and N2 adsorption/desorption isotherms. The organic groups were covalently immobilized in a monolayer form. These modified silicas were investigated as adsorbents for Pb2+, Cu2+, Cd2+ and Ni2+ in aqueous and ethanol solutions. In a general way, the adsorption capacity values for all adsorbents presented the following sequence: Pb2+ >> Cu2+ <FONT FACE=Symbol>@</FONT>Cd2+ <FONT FACE=Symbol>@</FONT> Ni2+. Adsorption studies for all adsorbents, in competitive medium, showed better selectivity for Cu2+ and Pb2+ in aqueous medium and for Pb2+ in ethanol solution. Desorption studies were carried out using HCl and HNO3 as eluents. <![CDATA[<B>Physico-chemical characterization of inclusion complex between hydroxymethylnitrofurazone and hydroxypropyl-<FONT FACE=Symbol>b</FONT>-cyclodextrin</B>]]> Hydroxymethylnitrofurazone (NFOH) is a prodrug that is active against Trypanosoma cruzi. It however presents low solubility and high toxicity. Hydroxypropyl-beta-cyclodextrin (HP-beta-CD) can be used as a drug-delivery system for NFOH modifying its physico-chemical properties. The aim of this work is to characterize the inclusion complex between NFOH and HP-beta-CD. The rate of NFOH release decreases after complexation and thermodynamic parameters from the solubility isotherm studies revealed that a stable complex is formed (deltaGº= 1.7 kJ/mol). This study focuses on the physico-chemical characterization of a drug-delivery formulation that comes out as a potentially new therapeutic option for Chagas disease treatment. <![CDATA[<B>Multivariate analysis of phisico-chemical parameters in samples of red wines sold in the metropolitan area of Recife</B>]]> The Brazilian legislation requires analysis of certain parameters to classify a wine and allow its commercialization. Some physico-chemical and some color parameters were determined in this work in samples of different red wines sold in the metropolitan area of Recife. Multivariate analysis comprising principal component analysis and hierarchical cluster analysis was employed to distinguish the analyzed wines. The results for pH, chloride concentration, color parameters and ammonium content were the most important variables for sample classification. It was also possible to classify the wines as soft or dry wines and amongst the soft wines we could determine two out of four winegrowing producers. <![CDATA[<B>Study of thermal decomposition of a smokelles propellant</B>]]> The thermal decomposition of hydroxyl-terminated polybutadiene (HTPB)/ammonium nitrate (AN) based propellants, so called smokeless formulations, and raw materials were investigated by differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and thermogravimetry (TG). The thermoanalytical profile of different components and of propellant were evaluated and the Arrhenius parameters for the thermal decomposition of the propellant sample were determined by the Ozawa method. The kinetic parameters of the thermal decomposition of propellant samples were determined by DSC measurements. The values obtained for activation energy (Ea) and pre-exponential factor were 163 kJ mol-1 and 1.94x10(6) min-1. <![CDATA[<B>Effect of medium-chain triglycerides, fiber and calcium on the availability of magnesium and zinc by an <I>in vitro</I> method and response surface methodology</B>]]> Nutritional therapy with enteral diets became highly specialized in the last years. This work aims to study the effect of the components of a formulation, namely fiber, calcium and medium-chain triglycerides, for dialysability of minerals. Analysis of multiple variables was done using response surface methodology. The level curve showed that the tertiary interaction MCT-fiber-calcium was the one that presented the highest synergism in the formulation. The proportion of 33% MCT, 25% fiber and 42% calcium, gave the best formulation for availability of magnesium. <![CDATA[<B>Evaluation of filtration and ozonation of a primary sanitary effluent</B>: <B>aspects of microbacial inactivation and ozonation variables</B>]]> Ozonation tests with and without prior filtration by means of a 50 micron mesh cartridge filter were conducted with primary sanitary effluents. Filtration led to increased inactivation efficiencies with regard to total and thermotolerant coliforms but it did not seem to influence heterotrophic plate count (HPC) bacteria inactivation efficiencies significantly. Application of the Chick-Watson model to experimental data obtained in the situation of constant inactivation showed that the ozone dosage was more important to bacterial inactivation than the contact time with regard to the cases of thermotolerant coliform inactivation in filtered samples and HPC bacteria and total coliform inactivation in non-filtered samples. <![CDATA[<B>Fluoride content in green tea infusions (Camellia sinensis)</B>]]> The aim of this work was to study the influence of green tea consumption on fluoride ingestion. The extraction conditions of fluorides from green tea infusions were defined and nine brands of green tea available in Portugal were analyzed. The quantification of fluorides in the green tea was preceded by the implementation and validation of the potentiometric method (commercial fluoride selective electrode). The concentration of fluorides in the samples ranged from 0. 8 to 2. 0 mg L-1. <![CDATA[<B>Uptake of Hg<SUP>2+</SUP> from aqueous solutions by microporous titano- and zircono-silicates</B>]]> Being mercury one of the most toxic heavy metals present in the environment, it is of major concern to develop cleanup technologies to remove it from wastewater and recover mercury polluted ecosystems. In this context, we study the potential of some microporous titanosilicates and zirconosilicates for taking up Hg2+ from aqueous solutions. These materials have unique chemical and physical properties, and here we are able to confirm that they readily remove Hg2+ from aqueous solutions. Moreover, the presence of the competitive Mg2+ and Na+, which are some of the dominant cations in natural waters, does not reduce the uptake capacity of some of these materials. Thus, several inorganic materials reported here may have important environmental applications, efficiently removing Hg2+ from aqueous solutions. <![CDATA[<B>Synthesis of aryl <FONT FACE=Symbol>b</FONT>-<I>N</I>-acetylglucosaminedes modified at C-6 as potential antimicrovial agents</B>]]> We report herein the synthesis of aryl beta-N-acetylglucosaminides containing azido, amino and acetamido groups at C-6 as potential antimicrobial agents. It was expected that these compounds could interfere with the biosynthesis and/or biotransformation of N-acetylglucosamine in fungi and bacteria. None of the compounds showed antimicrobial activity against bacteria (Bacillus subtilis, Micrococcus luteus, Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas aeruginosa), filamentous fungus (Aspergillus niger) and yeasts (Saccharomyces cerevisae, Candida albicans and Candida tropicallis), at the concentration of 1 mg/mL in agar diffusion assay. <![CDATA[<B>Crystallization behavior of structured lipids by chemical interesterification of lard and soybean oil</B>]]> The aim of this study was to evaluate the crystallization behavior of binary mixtures of lard and soybean oil in different ratios and their respective structured lipids obtained by chemical interesterification. Crystallization kinetics and polarized light microscopy were used to analyze the mixtures before and after interesterification. The addition of soybean oil changed the lard crystallization, by the effect of the dilution. Crystal diameter increased, while the number of crystals decreased, as a function of temperature. Interesterification resulted in the formation of fewer crystals, with larger diameter in comparison with the original mixtures. <![CDATA[<B>Ultrasonic waves and glass pearls</B>: <B>a new method of extraction of <FONT FACE=Symbol>b</FONT>-galactosodade for use in laboratory</B>]]> The optimization of a traditional technique of cellular disruption by abrasion was carried out and a process using ultrasonic waves associated with glass pearls to extract beta-galactosidase from Kluyveromyces marxianus proposed. In the first case, the effects of the diameter and weight of the pearls in relation to the volume of cellular suspension and amount of time for cellular disruption were evaluated. The efficiency of the new process of cellular disruption was evaluated by varying the length of time of sonification and comparing with the method of abrasion under the same conditions. The proposed method can be efficiently applied to obtain beta-galactosidase at laboratory scale. <![CDATA[<B>Atmosferic pollution (coastal and industrial) effects on electric energy distribution insulators in Salvador, Brazil, metropolitan region</B>]]> The performances of eight kinds of insulators from electrical distribution lines in Salvador-BA, Brazil, were evaluated considering the chemical and physical local environmental pollution. The parameters that were chosen as characteristic for the insulators' properties were leakage current and partial electrical discharge. A data storage processing system and a communication link to the lab were built for data acquisition. The results show that the main contribution to the poor performance of the insulators is settleable magnetite particulate matter on the insulator in addition to the long term wetness time, t4. <![CDATA[<B>Conductometric determination of captopril in pharmaceutical formulations using copper(II) sulphate as titrant</B>]]> A simple and rapid conductometric method for captopril determination using copper(II) sulphate solution as titrant was developed. The method was based on the chemical reaction between captopril and Cu(II) ions yielding a precipitate. The conductance of the solution was monitored as a function of the added volume of titrant. The method was applied with success for captopril determination in three pharmaceutical formulations. The relative standard deviation for six successive measurements was smaller than 0.5%. Recovery values from three samples, ranging from 97.7 to 103%, were obtained. <![CDATA[<B>Application of Zr/Ti-PILC in the adsorption process of Cu(II), Co(II) and Ni(II) using adsorption physico-chemical models and thermodinamics of the process</B>]]> The aim of this investigation is to study how Zr/Ti-PILC adsorbs metals. The physico-chemical proprieties of Zr/Ti-PILC have been optimized with pillarization processes and Cu(II), Ni(II) and Co(II) adsorption from aqueous solution has been carried out, with maximum adsorption values of 8.85, 8.30 and 7.78 x10-1 mmol g-1, respectively. The Langmuir, Freundlich and Temkin adsorption isotherm models have been applied to fit the experimental data with a linear regression process. The energetic effect caused by metal interaction was determined through calorimetric titration at the solid-liquid interface and gave a net thermal effect that enabled the calculation of the exothermic values and the equilibrium constant. <![CDATA[<B>Properties and recent applications of cyclodextrins</B>]]> Cyclodextrins (CDs) are cyclic oligosaccharides comprised of six or more glucose units connected by alpha-1,4 bonds. They have hydrophobic cavities with a hydrophilic exterior, and are versatile receptors for a variety of substrates. This ability allows them to be applied in many fields, as distinct as supramolecular chemistry, nanotechnology, pharmaceuticals, green chemistry, agrochemicals, analytical chemistry, toiletries, foods, and cosmetics. This review summarizes several aspects related to the physico-chemical properties of CDs and discusses their potential applications illustrated by recent examples. The prospects for their use in several areas are also described. <![CDATA[<B>Preparation methods, reactivity and biological importance of 4-thiazolidinones</B>]]> Molecules containing the 4-thiazolidinone ring are known to possess a wide range of biological properties including antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory activities among others. These compounds can be synthesized by cyclization reactions involving alpha-haloacetic acid or alpha-mercaptoacetic acid and employed in several chemoselective reactions. Comprehensive reviews have been written on 4-thiazolidinones in 1961 by Brown and in 1980 by Singh et al. In the recent literature, some new synthesis methods for 4-thiazolidinone derivatives and several reactions have been reported. These advances warrant to review the chemical and biological properties of compounds with this important heterocycle employed in synthetic organic chemistry and medicinal chemistry. <![CDATA[<B>A computational perspective on enzymatic catalysis</B>]]> Enzymes are extremely efficient catalysts. Here, part of the mechanisms proposed to explain this catalytic power will be compared to quantitative experimental results and computer simulations. Influence of the enzymatic environment over species along the reaction coordinate will be analysed. Concepts of transition state stabilisation and reactant destabilisation will be confronted. Divided site model and near-attack conformation hypotheses will also be discussed. Molecular interactions such as covalent catalysis, general acid-base catalysis, electrostatics, entropic effects, steric hindrance, quantum and dynamical effects will also be analysed as sources of catalysis. Reaction mechanisms, in particular that catalysed by protein tyrosine phosphatases, illustrate the concepts. <![CDATA[<B>Dynamic-mechanical analysis</B>: <B>applications in edible film technology</B>]]> Edible films are thin materials based on biopolymers and food additives. The aim of this work is a review on the application of dynamic mechanical analysis in edible film technology. After a brief review of the linear visco-elasticity theory, a description of some practical aspects related to dynamic mechanical analysis, such as sample fixation and sample dehydration during analysis and types and modes of tests are presented. Thus, the use of temperature scanning analysis for glass transition and for plasticizer-biopolymer compatibility studies and frequency scanning tests, less common in edible film technology, are critically reviewed. <![CDATA[<B>Essays for determining lead (Bio)availability in contaminated soils</B>: <B>review</B>]]> Incidental ingestion of contaminated soils is a major route of Pb uptake by humans, especially by children. Lead speciation in soils controls its bioavailability. Bioavailability assessment requires the determination of the amount of absorbed lead if a contaminated soil is ingested. In vivo tests, which employ animals, are considered the best model to infer absorption of Pb. But they have some logistic limitations and several authors proposed in vitro methods, which simulate conditions of human digestion. Many of them present results which correlate with in vivo essays. Several authors consider in vitro tests a good and reliable alternative to infer lead bioavailability. <![CDATA[<B>2-phenylbenzotriazoles (PBTAs)</B>: <B>a new class of environmental contaminants</B>]]> This work is a literature review of PBTAs, the phenylbenzotriazoles generated from the reduction and chlorination of azo dyes. The PBTAs and the non- chlorinated PBTAs were isolated for the first time from river blue rayon organic extracts that showed high mutagenic activity in the Salmonella/microsome genotoxicity assay. To date, 8 PBTAs have been identified and beside their mutagenic activity in bacteria they cause genotoxic effects in fish and mammalian cell cultures. Due to the large number of textile dyeing facilities in Brazil, studies to determine them in the aquatic environment seem to be relevant. <![CDATA[<B>Synthesis of chromatographic standards and establishment of a method for the quantification of the fatty ester composition of biodiesel from babassu oil</B>]]> Several alkyl esters were synthesized, purified, characterized by ¹H NMR and employed as standards for establishing chromatographic methods to monitor their formation in the synthesis of biodiesel. The efficiency of the chromatographic methods was confirmed with the products of enzymatic transesterification of babassu oil with different alcohols (C2 to C4), using Lipozyme as catalyst. <![CDATA[<B>Purification and characterization of <FONT FACE=Symbol>b</FONT>-lapachone and stability study of the crystals under different storing conditions</B>]]> The beta-lapachone is a product obtained from the Ipê Roxo tree [Tabebuia avellandae], which has proved its excellent antineoplasic potential acting through a particular mechanism of apoptosis against various cancer types. This study aims at determining the identity card of beta-lapachone by means of physico-chemical and pharmaco-technical characterization. A purifying process has been performed, as well as the isolation of a contaminant, its isomer alpha-lapachone. A stability study was also performed, determining the ideal storing conditions for beta-lapachone, essential for the ongoing pre-formulation studies for obtaining the different classic pharmaceutical forms and modified release systems. <![CDATA[<B>Determination of polymeric layer thickness on immobilized stationary phases for high-performance liquid chromatography using thermogravimetric analyses</B>]]> This paper presents a simple and practical thermogravimetric method for determining the layer thickness of immobilized polymer stationary phases used in reversed-phase high-performance liquid chromatography. In this method, the weight loss of different polysiloxanes immobilized onto chromatographic supports, determined over the temperature range 150-650 ºC, demonstrated excellent agreement with the sum of carbon and hydrogen content obtained by elemental analysis. The results presented here suggest that the thermogravimetric procedure is an accurate and precise method to determine the polymeric material content on polymer-coated stationary phases. <![CDATA[<B>Determination of biodiesel percentage in biodiesel</B>: <B>diesel mixtures using mid-infrared spectroscopy</B>]]> Considered the best substitute for diesel, biodiesel can be blended with diesel in any ratio, bringing lots of environmental, economic and social advantages. Brazilian law Nº 11097/2005, proposes the introduction of biodiesel in to the Brazilian energy matrix, mixed with diesel at a minimum percentage of 2%. For consumers and sellers to be sure that the commercialized mixture of biodiesel:diesel contains the correct percentage, it is necessary to develop analytical methodologies to quantify the amount of biodiesel added. This work presents a fast, low-cost and simple methodology to determine the biodiesel proportion in mixtures of biodiesel:diesel, based on infrared spectroscopy. <![CDATA[<B>Construction of a long-pathlength flow cell for spectrophotometric measurements</B>]]> A simple and low-cost flow cell with 30 cm optical path for spectrophotometric measurements is described. It presents desirable characteristics such as low attenuation of the radiation beam and internal volume (75 µL) comparable to that of a 1-cm conventional cell (80 µL). Despite the increase in optical path, the effect on sample dispersion was also similar to that attained in the commercial cell. The performance of the cell was assessed by the determination of phosphate based on the molybdenum blue method, yielding a linear response range between 0.05 and 0.8 mg L-1 phosphorus (r=0.999). The increase in sensitivity (30.4-fold) in comparison with that obtained with a conventional 1-cm flow cell agreed with that estimated by the Lambert-Beer law. <![CDATA[<B>An adapted magnetite synthesis strategy</B>]]> Chemical reactions in the solid state are often not included in undergraduate chemistry curricula, due to requirements for special laboratory facilities such as ovens and precision weighing balances. This work aims to describe novel and relatively simple magnetite chemical syntheses in dry medium, which could also be used as an alternative for freshmen chemistry experiments. The proposed reaction was carried out in a muffle furnace by heating (i) a sol-gel preparation and (ii) natural hematite, under nitrogen atmosphere at 400 ºC. The synthesized magnetite was characterized with powder X-ray diffraction and Mössbauer spectroscopy. Results show that magnetite samples have chemical properties as well as crystalline structure quite similar to those of standard natural magnetite. <![CDATA[<B>A simplified approach to the Quantum Monte Carlo method</B>: <B>from the solution of integrals to the electronic distribution problem</B>]]> The paper presents an introductory and general discussion on the quantum Monte Carlo methods, some fundamental algorithms, concepts and applicability. In order to introduce the quantum Monte Carlo method, preliminary concepts associated with Monte Carlo techniques are discussed. <![CDATA[<B>Internet as a source of bibliographic information in chemistry</B>]]> The internet is an important tool for obtaining information. It offers vast amounts of information ranging from basic to advanced, from general to specific. Nevertheless, its quality cannot be classified or graded. Furthermore, some technical and/or specific information may not be available for free. This work primarily shows the great utility of the internet for getting suitable information in Chemistry and emphasizes open access and quality sites in Chemistry. It directs the reader towards many useful sites within some branches of Chemistry that provide powerful tools of research and study that may not be obtained easily at a library. <![CDATA[<B>A challenge for schools</B>: <B>work as a general educational principle</B>]]> This work aims at investigating and proposing strategies to improve the comprehension of Chemistry concepts by high school students. One of these strategies consists in workshops that emphasize the notion of work as a general educational principle, in the perspective of polytechnic education. Interviews (pre and post-workshops) were used to evaluate the results. In post-workshop interviews, a significant incorporation of scientific concepts was observed, as well as a considerable improvement in the interpretation of experiments. <![CDATA[<B>Recomendações para calibração em Química Analítica parte 2</B>: <B>calibração multianalito</B>]]> This paper is a translation of an IUPAC document by K. Danzer, M. Otto and L. A. Currie (Pure Appl. Chem., 2004, 76(6), 1215-1225). Its goal is to establish a uniform and meaningful standard for terminology (in Portuguese), notation, and formulation concerning multispecies calibration in analytical chemistry. Calibration in analytical chemistry refers to the relation between sample domain and measurement domain (signal domain) expressed by an analytical function x = f s (Q) representing a pattern of chemical species Q and their amounts or concentrations x in a given test sample and a measured function y = f (z) that may be a spectrum, chromatogram, etc. Simultaneous multispecies analyses are carried out mainly by spectroscopic and chromatographic methods in a more or less selective way. For the determination of n species Qi (i=1,2, ..., n), at least n signals must be measured which should be well separated in the ideal case. In analytical practice, the situation can be different. <![CDATA[<B>Errata</B>]]> This paper is a translation of an IUPAC document by K. Danzer, M. Otto and L. A. Currie (Pure Appl. Chem., 2004, 76(6), 1215-1225). Its goal is to establish a uniform and meaningful standard for terminology (in Portuguese), notation, and formulation concerning multispecies calibration in analytical chemistry. Calibration in analytical chemistry refers to the relation between sample domain and measurement domain (signal domain) expressed by an analytical function x = f s (Q) representing a pattern of chemical species Q and their amounts or concentrations x in a given test sample and a measured function y = f (z) that may be a spectrum, chromatogram, etc. Simultaneous multispecies analyses are carried out mainly by spectroscopic and chromatographic methods in a more or less selective way. For the determination of n species Qi (i=1,2, ..., n), at least n signals must be measured which should be well separated in the ideal case. In analytical practice, the situation can be different.