Scielo RSS <![CDATA[Brazilian Journal of Microbiology]]> vol. 45 num. 4 lang. en <![CDATA[SciELO Logo]]> <![CDATA[<b>Live bacterial vaccine vectors</b>: <b></b><b>An overview</b>]]> Genetically attenuated microorganisms, pathogens, and some commensal bacteria can be engineered to deliver recombinant heterologous antigens to stimulate the host immune system, while still offering good levels of safety. A key feature of these live vectors is their capacity to stimulate mucosal as well as humoral and/or cellular systemic immunity. This enables the use of different forms of vaccination to prevent pathogen colonization of mucosal tissues, the front door for many infectious agents. Furthermore, delivery of DNA vaccines and immune system stimulatory molecules, such as cytokines, can be achieved using these special carriers, whose adjuvant properties and, sometimes, invasive capacities enhance the immune response. More recently, the unique features and versatility of these vectors have also been exploited to develop anti-cancer vaccines, where tumor-associated antigens, cytokines, and DNA or RNA molecules are delivered. Different strategies and genetic tools are constantly being developed, increasing the antigenic potential of agents delivered by these systems, opening fresh perspectives for the deployment of vehicles for new purposes. Here we summarize the main characteristics of the different types of live bacterial vectors and discuss new applications of these delivery systems in the field of vaccinology. <![CDATA[<b>Relationship among <i>Shigella</i> spp. and enteroinvasive <i>Escherichia coli</i> (EIEC) and their differentiation</b>]]> Shigellosis produces inflammatory reactions and ulceration on the intestinal epithelium followed by bloody or mucoid diarrhea. It is caused by enteroinvasive E. coli (EIEC) as well as any species of the genus Shigella, namely, S. dysenteriae, S. flexneri, S. boydii, and S. sonnei. This current species designation of Shigella does not specify genetic similarity. Shigella spp. could be easily differentiated from E. coli, but difficulties observed for the EIEC-Shigella differentiation as both show similar biochemical traits and can cause dysentery using the same mode of invasion. Sequencing of multiple housekeeping genes indicates that Shigella has derived on several different occasions via acquisition of the transferable forms of ancestral virulence plasmids within commensal E. coli and form a Shigella-EIEC pathovar. EIEC showed lower expression of virulence genes compared to Shigella, hence EIEC produce less severe disease than Shigella spp. Conventional microbiological techniques often lead to confusing results concerning the discrimination between EIEC and Shigella spp. The lactose permease gene (lacY) is present in all E. coli strains but absent in Shigella spp., whereas β-glucuronidase gene (uidA) is present in both E. coli and Shigella spp. Thus uidA gene and lacY gene based duplex real-time PCR assay could be used for easy identification and differentiation of Shigella spp. from E. coli and in particular EIEC. <![CDATA[<b>Regulation of gene expression</b><b></b>: <b>Cryptic </b><b>β-glucoside (<i>bgl</i>) operon of <i>Escherichia coli</i> as a paradigm</b>]]> Bacteria have evolved various mechanisms to extract utilizable substrates from available resources and consequently acquire fitness advantage over competitors. One of the strategies is the exploitation of cryptic cellular functions encoded by genetic systems that are silent under laboratory conditions, such as the bgl (β-glucoside) operon of E. coli. The bgl operon of Escherichia coli, involved in the uptake and utilization of aromatic β-glucosides salicin and arbutin, is maintained in a silent state in the wild type organism by the presence of structural elements in the regulatory region. This operon can be activated by mutations that disrupt these negative elements. The fact that the silent bgl operon is retained without accumulating deleterious mutations seems paradoxical from an evolutionary view point. Although this operon appears to be silent, specific physiological conditions might be able to regulate its expression and/or the operon might be carrying out function(s) apart from the utilization of aromatic β-glucosides. This is consistent with the observations that the activated operon confers a Growth Advantage in Stationary Phase (GASP) phenotype to Bgl+ cells and exerts its regulation on at least twelve downstream target genes. <![CDATA[<b><i>Eucalyptus grandis</i></b><b> Hill ex Maiden inoculated with <i>Pisolithus microcarpus</i> (UFSC-Pt116) in land subject to the sandy process in southern Brazil</b>]]> Eucalypts is one of the main species used for commercial reforestation in the state of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil. This study aimed to evaluate the survival and early growth of eucalyptus trees in an area subject to sandy process after three years of growth. The Eucalyptus grandis seedlings were grown in a greenhouse, innoculated or not with the isolated ectomycorrhizal Pisolithus microcarpus (UFSC-Pt116), produced in peat or Entisol. After 120 days, the seedlings were transplanted to an area subject to the sandy process, in the city of São Francisco de Assis, RS. The plants have been evaluated regarding survival, height, stem diameter, nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium levels and total phosphorus, inorganic phosphorus, organic phosphorus and wood production on different days after planting. The seedlings grown on the Entisol which was inoculated with the isolated UFSC-Pt116 presented higher survival rates, height, stem diameter, nitrogen concentration and wood production compared to the non-inoculated seedlings. Inoculation with ectomycorrhizal fungi enhanced the production of E. grandis seedlings in survival rates, height, stem diameter. <![CDATA[<b>Microbial dynamics during azo dye degradation in a UASB reactor supplied with yeast extract</b>]]> The present work aimed to investigate the microbial dynamics during the anaerobic treatment of the azo dye blue HRFL in bench scale upflow anaerobic sludge bed (UASB) reactor operated at ambient temperature. Sludge samples were collected under distinct operational phases, when the reactor were stable (low variation of color removal), to assess the effect of glucose and yeast extract as source of carbon and redox mediators, respectively. Reactors performance was evaluated based on COD (chemical oxygen demand) and color removal. The microbial dynamics were investigated by PCR-DGGE (Polimerase Chain Reaction - Denaturing Gradient of Gel Electrophoresis) technique by comparing the 16S rDNA profiles among samples. The results suggest that the composition of microorganisms changed from the beginning to the end of the reactor operation, probably in response to the presence of azo dye and/or its degradation byproducts. Despite the highest efficiency of color removal was observed in the presence of 500 mg/L of yeast extract (up to 93%), there were no differences regarding the microbial profiles that could indicate a microbial selection by the yeast extract addition. On the other hand Methosarcina barkeri was detected only in the end of operation when the best efficiencies on color removal occurred. Nevertheless the biomass selection observed in the last stages of UASB operation is probably a result of the washout of the sludge in response of accumulation of aromatic amines which led to tolerant and very active biomass that contributed to high efficiencies on color removal. <![CDATA[<b>Bacterial diversity in relatively pristine and anthropogenically-influenced mangrove ecosystems (Goa, India)</b>]]> To appreciate differences in benthic bacterial community composition at the relatively pristine Tuvem and the anthropogenically-influenced Divar mangrove ecosystems in Goa, India, parallel tag sequencing of the V6 region of 16S rDNA was carried out. We hypothesize that availability of extraneously-derived anthropogenic substrates could act as a stimulatant but not a deterrent to promote higher bacterial diversity at Divar. Our observations revealed that the phylum Proteobacteria was dominant at both locations comprising 43-46% of total tags. The Tuvem ecosystem was characterized by an abundance of members belonging to the class Deltaproteobacteria (21%), ~ 2100 phylotypes and 1561 operational taxonomic units (OTUs) sharing &gt; 97% similarity. At Divar, the Gammaproteobacteria were ~ 2x higher (17%) than at Tuvem. A more diverse bacterial community with &gt; 3300 phylotypes and &gt; 2000 OTUs mostly belonging to Gammaproteobacteria and a significantly higher DNT (n = 9, p < 0.001, df = 1) were recorded at Divar. These findings suggest that the quantity and quality of pollutants at Divar are perhaps still at a level to maintain high diversity. Using this technique we could show higher diversity at Divar with the possibility of Gammaproteobacteria contributing to modulating excess nitrate. <![CDATA[<b>Optimization of the production of mycorrhizal inoculum on substrate with organic fertilizer</b>]]> The system for production of inoculum of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) using sand and vermiculite irrigated with nutrient solution is promising. However, organic amendments added to the substrate can stimulate sporulation of AMF and replace the nutrient solution. The aim of this study was to maximize the production of AMF (Acaulospora longula, Claroideoglomus etunicatum, Dentiscutata heterogama and Gigaspora albida) using selected organic substrates (vermicompost, coir dust and Tropstrato) together with sand and vermiculite. The production of spores varied among the tested AMF and according to the organic source added to the substrate. The vermicompost promoted higher sporulation of A. longula in relation to the other AMF and substrates. The Tropstrato® inhibited the sporulation of D. heterogama while the reproduction of C. etunicatum was not affected by the organic compounds. The inoculum of A. longula also showed a high number of infective propagules and promoted biomass accumulation in maize plants. The system of inoculum production using sand and vermiculite + 10% vermicompost favors the production of infective inoculum of A. longula with the fungus benefiting growth of corn plants. <![CDATA[<b>Poly R decolorization and APPL production by <i>Streptomyces</i> <i>violaceoruber</i> and <i>Streptomyces</i> <i>spiroverticillatus</i></b>]]> Two mesophilic streptomycetes (S. violaceoruber and S. spiroverticillatus) were selected to study their Poly R-478 decolorization ability and lignocellulose solubilizing activity. Both strains were able to degrade Poly R-478 dye and ferulic acid during growth on a minimal salts medium. The Poly R-478 decolorizing activities of both strains were induced by adding different carbon sources to the culture media. S. violaceoruber could decolorize 63% of Poly R-478 after 24 h. Both strains could solubilize straw and produce acid-precipitable polymeric lignin (APPL) with different efficiency. From the major extracellular enzymes recovery of both strains on rice and wheat straw, we can predicate that the biodegradation process was partial indicating a possible utilization in biological delignification. <![CDATA[<b>Large scale distribution of bacterial communities in the upper Paraná River floodplain</b>]]> A bacterial community has a central role in nutrient cycle in aquatic habitats. Therefore, it is important to analyze how this community is distributed throughout different locations. Thirty-six different sites in the upper Paraná River floodplain were surveyed to determine the influence of environmental variable in bacterial community composition. The sites are classified as rivers, channels, and floodplain lakes connected or unconnected to the main river channel. The bacterial community structure was analyzed by fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH) technique, based on frequency of the main domains Bacteria and Archaea, and subdivisions of the phylum Proteobacteria (Alpha-proteobacteria, Beta-proteobacteria, Gamma-proteobacteria) and the Cytophaga-Flavobacterium cluster. It has been demonstrated that the bacterial community differed in density and frequency of the studied groups. And these differences responded to distinct characteristics of the three main rivers of the floodplain as well as to the classification of the environments found in this floodplain. We conclude that dissimilarities in the bacterial community structure are related to environmental heterogeneity, and the limnological variables that most predicted bacterial communities in the upper Paraná River floodplain was total and ammoniacal nitrogen, orthophosphate and chlorophyll-a. <![CDATA[<b>Role of wild birds as carriers of multi-drug resistant <i>Escherichia coli</i> and <i>Escherichia</i> <i>vulneris</i></b>]]> Emergence and distribution of multi-drug resistant (MDR) bacteria in environments pose a risk to human and animal health. A total of 82 isolates of Escherichia spp. were recovered from cloacal swabs of migrating and non-migrating wild birds. All bacterial isolates were identified and characterized morphologically and biochemically. 72% and 50% of isolates recovered from non-migrating and migrating birds, respectively, showed positive congo red dye binding (a virulence factor). Also, hemolysin production (a virulence factor) was showed in 8% of isolates recovered from non-migrating birds and 75% of isolates recovered from migrating birds. All isolates recovered from non-migrating birds were found resistant to Oxacillin while all isolates recovered from migrating birds demonstrated resistance to Oxacillin, Chloramphenicol, Oxytetracycline and Lincomycin. Some bacterial isolates recovered from non-migrating birds and migrating birds exhibited MDR phenotype. The MDR isolates were further characterized by API 20E and 16S rRNA as E. coli and E. vulneris. MDR Escherichia isolates contain ~1-5 plasmids of high-molecular weights. Accordingly, wild birds could create a potential threat to human and animal health by transmitting MDR bacteria to water streams and other environmental sources through their faecal residues, and to remote regions by migration. <![CDATA[<b>Assessment of cellulolytic microorganisms in soils of Nevados Park, Colombia</b>]]> A systematized survey was conducted to find soil-borne microbes that degrade cellulose in soils from unique ecosystems, such as the Superpáramo, Páramo, and the High Andean Forest in the Nevados National Natural Park (NNNP), Colombia. These high mountain ecosystems represent extreme environments, such as high levels of solar radiation, low atmospheric pressure, and extreme daily changes in temperature. Cellulolytic activity of the microorganisms was evaluated using qualitative tests, such as growth in selective media followed by staining with congo red and iodine, and quantitative tests to determine the activity of endoglucanase, β-glucosidase, exoglucanase, and total cellulase. Microorganisms were identified using molecular markers, such as the 16S rRNA gene for bacteria and the internal transcribed spacer region (ITS) of ribosomal DNA for fungi. Multivariate statistical analysis (MVA) was used to select microorganisms with high cellulolytic capacity. A total of 108 microorganisms were isolated from the soils and, in general, the enzymatic activities of fungi were higher than those of bacteria. Our results also found that none of the organisms studied were able to degrade all the components of the cellulose and it is therefore suggested that a combination of bacteria and/or fungi with various enzymatic activities be used to obtain high total cellulolytic activity. This study gives an overview of the potential microorganism that could be used for cellulose degradation in various biotechnological applications and for sustainable agricultural waste treatment. <![CDATA[<b><b>Antibacterial properties of silver nanoparticles synthesized by marine <i>Ochrobactrum</i> sp.</b></b>]]> Metal nanoparticle synthesis is an interesting area in nanotechnology due to their remarkable optical, magnetic, electrical, catalytic and biomedical properties, but there needs to develop clean, non-toxic and environmental friendly methods for the synthesis and assembly of nanoparticles. Biological agents in the form of microbes have emerged up as efficient candidates for nanoparticle synthesis due to their extreme versatility to synthesize diverse nanoparticles with varying size and shape. In the present study, an eco favorable method for the biosynthesis of silver nanoparticles using marine bacterial isolate has been attempted. Very interestingly, molecular identification proved it as a strain of Ochrobactrum anhtropi. In addition, the isolate was found to have the potential to form silver nanoparticles intracellularly at room temperature within 24 h. The biosynthesized silver nanoparticles were characterized by UV-Vis spectroscopy, transmission electron microscope (TEM) and scanning electron microscope (SEM). The UV-visible spectrum of the aqueous medium containing silver nanoparticles showed a peak at 450 nm corresponding to the plasmon absorbance of silver nanoparticles. The SEM and TEM micrographs revealed that the synthesized silver nanoparticles were spherical in shape with a size range from 38 nm - 85 nm. The silver nanoparticles synthesized by the isolate were also used to explore its antibacterial potential against pathogens like Salmonella Typhi, Salmonella Paratyphi, Vibrio cholerae and Staphylococcus aureus. <![CDATA[<b>Screening and optimization of low-cost medium for <i>Pseudomonas putida</i> Rs-198 culture using RSM</b>]]> The plant growth-promoting rhizobacterial strain Pseudomonas putida Rs-198 was isolated from salinized soils from Xinjiang Province. We optimized the composition of the low-cost medium of P. putida Rs-198 based on its bacterial concentration, as well as its phosphate-dissolving and indole acetic acid (IAA)-producing capabilities using the response surface methodology (RSM), and a mathematical model was developed to show the effect of each medium component and its interactions on phosphate dissolution and IAA production. The model predicted a maximum phosphate concentration in medium containing 63.23 mg/L inorganic phosphate with 49.22 g/L corn flour, 14.63 g/L soybean meal, 2.03 g/L K2HPO4, 0.19 g/L MnSO4 and 5.00 g/L NaCl. The maximum IAA concentration (18.73 mg/L) was predicted in medium containing 52.41 g/L corn flour, 15.82 g/L soybean meal, 2.40 g/L K2HPO4, 0.17 g/L MnSO4 and 5.00 g/L NaCl. These predicted values were also verified through experiments, with a cell density of 10(13) cfu/mL, phosphate dissolution of 64.33 mg/L, and IAA concentration of 18.08 mg/L. The excellent correlation between predicted and measured values of each model justifies the validity of both the response models. The study aims to provide a basis for industrialized fermentation using P. putida Rs-198. <![CDATA[<b>Biotransformation of Tributyltin chloride by <i>Pseudomonas stutzeri</i> strain DN2</b>]]> A bacterial isolate capable of utilizing tributyltin chloride (TBTCl) as sole carbon source was isolated from estuarine sediments of west coast of India and identified as Pseudomonas stutzeri based on biochemical tests and Fatty acid methyl ester (FAME) analysis. This isolate was designated as strain DN2. Although this bacterial isolate could resist up to 3 mM TBTCl level, it showed maximum growth at 2 mM TBTCl in mineral salt medium (MSM). Pseudomonas stutzeri DN2 exposed to 2 mM TBTCl revealed significant alteration in cell morphology as elongation and shrinkage in cell size along with roughness of cell surface. FTIR and NMR analysis of TBTCl degradation product extracted using chloroform and purified using column chromatography clearly revealed biotransformation of TBTCl into Dibutyltin dichloride (DBTCl2) through debutylation process. Therefore, Pseudomonas stutzeri strain DN2 may be used as a potential bacterial strain for bioremediation of TBTCl contaminated aquatic environmental sites. <![CDATA[<b>Occurrence and molecular characterization of <i>Cucumber green mottle mosaic virus</i> in cucurbit crops of KPK, Pakistan</b>]]> Field survey of the cucurbit crops revealed a high incidence of Cucumber green mottle mosaic virus (CGMMV) in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province (KPK), Pakistan. Among the seven districts surveyed, average percent incidence of CGMMV was recorded up to 58.1% in district Nowshera, followed by 51.1% in district Charsada, 40.5% in district Swabi and 37.3% in district Mardan. In Swat and Dir districts average incidence CGMMV was recorded upto 31.2% and 29.4%, respectively. Among the different crops highest incidence in plain areas of KPK was recorded in bottle gourd (59.3%) followed by 56.3% in Squash, 54.5% in Pumpkin, 45.5% in Melon, 41.7% in Cucumber and 29.9% in Sponge gourd. In Northern hilly areas highest incidence of CGMMV (52.9%) was observed in pumpkin, followed by 49.6% in bottle gourd, 47.3% in squash, 45.1% in Melon 42.3% in cucumber and 41.6% in sponge gourd. Little variability was observed in the coat protein amino acid sequence identities of CGMMV Pakistan isolate, when compared with other reported isolates. <![CDATA[<b>Molecular identification of the occurrence of magnetotactic bacteria in fresh water sediments (Czech Republic)</b>]]> Magnetotactic bacteria (MTB) are of considerable interest because of their importance in the manufacture of various bioinspired materials. In order to find out the status of magnetotactic bacteria at three different sediment in Czech Republic, samples collected from both standing and running freshwaters were subjected to molecular diversity analysis by using 16S rRNA gene approach. Total community DNA from sediment sample was isolated and used for PCR, cloning and sequence analysis. Of the 24 analyzed sequences, six clones are closely related to Magnetobacterium sp. affiliated with the Nitrospira phylum which showed the dominance of Magnetobacterium phylotypes in the sample. This study will provide useful insight about the community structure of MTB in this particular geographical region. However more detailed and specific studies are warranted in order to properly assess the community structure of MTB's in fresh water sediments. <![CDATA[<b>Efficiency of treatments for controlling <i>Trichoderma</i> spp during spawning in cultivation of lignicolous mushrooms</b>]]> Trichoderma spp is the cause of the green mold disease in mushroom cultivation production. Many disinfection treatments are commonly applied to lignocellulose substrates to prevent contamination. Mushroom growers are usually worried about the contaminations that may occur after these treatments during handling or spawning. The aim of this paper is to estimate the growth of the green mold Trichoderma sp on lignocellulose substrates after different disinfection treatments to know which of them is more effective to avoid contamination during spawning phase. Three different treatments were assayed: sterilization (121 ºC), immersion in hot water (60 and 80 ºC), and immersion in alkalinized water. Wheat straw, wheat seeds and Eucalyptus or Populus sawdust were used separately as substrates. After the disinfection treatments, bagged substrates were sprayed with 3 mL of suspension of conidia of Trichoderma sp (10(5) conidia/mL) and then separately spawned with Pleurotus ostreatus or Gymnopilus pampeanus. The growth of Trichoderma sp was evaluated based on a qualitative scale. Trichoderma sp could not grow on non-sterilized substrates. Immersions in hot water treatments and immersion in alkalinized water were also unfavorable treatments for its growth. Co- cultivation with mushrooms favored Trichoderma sp growth. Mushroom cultivation disinfection treatments of lignocellulose substrates influence on the growth of Trichoderma sp when contaminations occur during spawning phase. The immersion in hot water at 60 ºC for 30 min or in alkalinized water for 36 h, are treatments which better reduced the contaminations with Trichoderma sp during spawning phase for the cultivation of lignicolous species. <![CDATA[<b>Plant growth promoting capability and genetic diversity of bacteria isolated from mud volcano and lime cave of Andaman and Nicobar Islands</b>]]> Twenty four bacterial strains from four different regions of mud volcano and lime cave were isolated to estimate their diversity, plant growth promoting and biocontrol activities to use them as inoculant strains in the fields. An excellent antagonistic effect against four plant pathogens and plant growth promoting properties such as IAA production, HCN production, phosphate solubilization, siderophore production, starch hydrolysis and hydrolytic enzymes syntheses were identified in OM5 (Pantoea agglomerans) and EM9 (Exiguobacterium sp.) of 24 studied isolates. Seeds (Chili and tomato) inoculation with plant growth promoting strains resulted in increased percentage of seedling emergence, root length and plant weight. Results indicated that co-inoculation gave a more pronounced effects on seedling emergence, secondary root numbers, primary root length and stem length, while inoculation by alone isolate showed a lower effect. Our results suggest that the mixed inocula of OM5 and EM9 strains as biofertilizers could significantly increase the production of food crops in Andaman archipelago by means of sustainable and organic agricultural system. <![CDATA[<b>Gram-negative intestinal indigenous microbiota from two Siluriform fishes in a tropical reservoir</b>]]> The Gram-negative intestinal microbiota of Hypostomus auroguttatus and Pimelodus maculatus, a detritivorous and an omnivorous fish species, respectively, were compared between fishes from the reservoir and the stretch of the river below the dam of the Funil hydroelectric plant, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Four selective culture media were used under aerobic and two under anaerobic conditions. The omnivorous species had microbiota with higher population levels compared to the detritivorous species. The number of morphotypes and population levels of total bacteria, vibrio and Bacteroides tended to be higher in summer and autumn in the reservoir, and not different in the river. The number of morphotypes of enterobacteria and total bacteria were higher in the lotic environment compared with the lentic one. The bacteria Aeromonas hydrophila and Plesiomonas shigelloides and the obligate anaerobic Fusobacterium mortiferum were the most frequently identified microorganisms in the intestine of both H. auroguttatus and P. maculatus. Both season and habitat influenced the Gram-negative intestinal microbiota of H. auroguttatus and P. maculatus. Environmental factors influenced the Gram-negative intestinal microbiota of both species with possible impact on the interrelationship between the fishes and their digestive ecosystem, although the gut microbiota composition of fishes may result from host-specific selective pressures within the gut. <![CDATA[<b>Molecular characterization of a Xylanase-producing fungus isolated from fouled soil</b>]]> Xylanase (EC 3. 2. 1. 8), hydrolyzes xylo-oligosaccharides into D-xylose and required for complete hydrolysis of native cellulose and biomass conversion. It has broad range of applications in the pulp and paper, pharmaceutical and Agri-food industries. Fifty fungal species were isolated from the fouled soil around an oil refinery and screened for the production of xylanase enzyme by enrichment culture techniques. The isolated fungal strain was identified as Hypocrea lixii SS1 based on the results of biochemical tests and 18s rRNA sequencing. The phylogenetic tree was constructed using the MEGA 5 software. Further, Hypocrea lixii SS1 was tested for the ability to utilize the sunflower oil sludge (waste from the oil industry) as the sole carbon source for xylanase production. The growth characteristics of Hypocrea lixii SS1 were also studied and maximum growth was found on the 7th day of incubation. The fungus showed a remarkable xylanase production of 38.9 U/mL. Xylanase was purified using a combination of 0-50% NH4SO2 precipitation, DEAE-sepharose and Sephacryl S-200 chromatography. Single peak obtained in RP-HPLC confirms the purity of xylanase. Further the enzyme produced was affirmed as xylanase with its molecular weight (29 kDa) using SDS-PAGE. <![CDATA[<b>Further characterization of <i>o</i>-nitrobenzaldehyde degrading bacterium <i>Pseudomonas</i> sp</b>: <b>ONBA-17 and deduction on its metabolic pathway</b>]]> A previously reported o-nitrobenzaldehyde (ONBA) degrading bacterium Pseudomonas sp. ONBA-17 was further identified and characterized. Based on results of DNA base composition and DNA-DNA hybridization, the strain was identified as P. putida. Its degradation effect enhanced with increase of inoculum amount and no lag phase was observed. Higher removal rate was achieved under shaking conditions. All tested ONBA with different initial concentrations could be completely degraded within 5 d. In addition, degradative enzyme(s) involved was confirmed as intra-cellular distributed and constitutively expressed. Effects of different compounds on relative activity of degradative enzyme(s) within cell-free extract were also evaluated. Finally, 2-nitrobenzoic acid and 2, 3-dihydroxybenzoic acid were detected as metabolites of ONBA degradation by P. putida ONBA-17, and relevant metabolic pathway was preliminary proposed. This study might help with future research in better understanding of nitroaromatics biodegradation. <![CDATA[<b>Isolation and characterization of arsenic resistant bacteria from wastewater</b>]]> The present study proposed the isolation of arsenic resistant bacteria from wastewater. Only three bacterial isolates (MNZ1, MNZ4 and MNZ6) were able to grow in high concentrations of arsenic. The minimum inhibitory concentrations of arsenic against MNZ1, MNZ4 and MNZ6 were 300 mg/L, 300 mg/L and 370 mg/L respectively. The isolated strains showed maximum growth at 37 ºC and at 7.0 pH in control but in arsenite stress Luria Bertani broth the bacterial growth is lower than control. All strains were arsenite oxidizing. All strains were biochemically characterized and ribotyping (16S rRNA) was done for the purpose of identification which confirmed that MNZ1 was homologous to Enterobacter sp. while MNZ4 and MNZ6 showed their maximum homology with Klebsiella pneumoniae. The protein profiling of these strains showed in arsenic stressed and non stressed conditions, so no bands of induced proteins appeared in stressed conditions. The bacterial isolates can be exploited for bioremediation of arsenic containing wastes, since they seem to have the potential to oxidize the arsenite (more toxic) into arsenate (less toxic) form. <![CDATA[<b>Quick stimulation of <i>Alcanivorax</i> sp. by bioemulsificant EPS<sub>2003</sub> on microcosm oil spill simulation</b>]]> Oil spill microcosms experiments were carried out to evaluate the effect of bioemulsificant exopolysaccharide (EPS2003) on quick stimulation of hydrocarbonoclastic bacteria. Early hours of oil spill, were stimulated using an experimental seawater microcosm, supplemented with crude oil and EPS2003 (SW+OIL+EPS2003); this system was monitored for 2 days and compared to control microcosm (only oil-polluted seawater, SW+OIL). Determination of bacterial abundance, heterotrophic cultivable and hydrocarbon-degrading bacteria were carried out. Community composition of marine bacterioplankton was determined by 16S rRNA gene clone libraries. Data obtained indicated that bioemulsificant addition stimulated an increase of total bacterial abundance and, in particular, selection of bacteria related to Alcanivorax genus; confirming that EPS2003 could be used for the dispersion of oil slicks and could stimulate the selection of marine hydrocarbon degraders thus increasing bioremediation process. <![CDATA[<b>Green Synthesis of AgNPs Stabilized with biowaste and their antimicrobial activities</b>]]> In the present study, rapid reduction and stabilization of Ag+ ions with different NaOH molar concentration (0.5 mM, 1.0 mM and 1.5 mM) has been carried out in the aqueous solution of silver nitrate by the bio waste peel extract of P.granatum. Generally, chemical methods used for the synthesis of AgNPs are quite toxic, flammable and have adverse effect in medical application but green synthesis is a better option due to eco-friendliness, non-toxicity and safe for human. Stable AgNPs were synthesized by treating 90 mL aqueous solution of 2 mM AgNO3 with the 5 mL plant peels extract (0.4% w/v) at different NaOH concentration (5 mL). The synthesized AgNPs were characterized by UV-Vis spectroscopy, TEM and SEM. Further, antimicrobial activities of AgNPs were performed on Gram positive i.e. Staphylococcus aureus, Bacillus subtilius and Gram negative i.e. E. coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa bacteria. The AgNPs synthesized at 1.5 mM NaOH concentration had shown maximum zone of inhibition (ZOI) i.e. 49 ± 0.64 in E. coli, whereas Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Staphylococcus aureus and Bacillus subtilius had shown 40 ± 0.29 mm, 28 ± 0.13 and 42 ± 0.49 mm ZOI respectively. The MIC value of 30 g/mL observed for E. coli Whereas, Staphylococcus aureus, Bacillus subtilius and Pseudomonas aeruginosa had shown 45 µg/mL, 38 µg/mL, 35 µg/mL respectively. The study revealed that AgNPs had shown significant antimicrobial activity as compared to Streptomycin. <![CDATA[<b>Cultivable endophytic bacteria from leaf bases of <i>Agave tequilana</i> and their role as plant growth promoters</b>]]> Agave tequilana Weber var. 'Azul' is grown for the production of tequila, inulin and syrup. Diverse bacteria inhabit plant tissues and play a crucial role for plant health and growth. In this study culturable endophytic bacteria were extracted from leaf bases of 100 healthy Agave tequilana plants. In plant tissue bacteria occurred at mean population densities of 3 million CFU/g of fresh plant tissue. Three hundred endophytic strains were isolated and 16s rDNA sequences grouped the bacteria into eight different taxa that shared high homology with other known sequences. Bacterial endophytes were identified as Acinectobacter sp., A. baumanii, A. bereziniae, Cronobacter sakazakii, Enterobacter hormaechei, Bacillus sp. Klebsiella oxytoca, Pseudomonas sp., Enterococcus casseliflavus, Leuconostoc mesenteroides subsp. mesenteroides and Gluconobacter oxydans. Isolates were confirmed to be plant growth promoting bacteria (PGPB) by their capacities for nitrogen fixation, auxin production, phosphate solubilization, or antagonism against Fusarium oxysporum AC132. E. casseliflavus JM47 and K. oxytoca JM26 secreted the highest concentrations of IAA. The endophyte Acinectobacter sp. JM58 exhibited the maximum values for nitrogen fixation and phosphate solubilization index (PSI). Inhibition of fungi was found in Pseudomonas sp. JM9p and K. oxytoca JM26. Bacterial endophytes show promise for use as bio-inoculants for agave cultivation. Use of endophytes to enhance cultivation of agave may be particularly important for plants produced by micropropagation techniques, where native endophytes may have been lost. <![CDATA[<b>Volatile compounds of Lamiaceae exhibit a synergistic antibacterial activity with streptomycin</b>]]> Bacterial infections cause thousands of deaths in the world every year. In most cases, infections are more serious because the patient is already weakened, and often, the bacteria are already resistant to the antibiotics used. Counterparting this negative scenario, the interest in medicinal plants as an alternative to the synthetic antimicrobial drugs is blossoming worldwide. In the present work, we identified the volatile compounds of ethanol extracts of Melissa officinalis, Mentha sp., Ocimum basilicum, Plectranthus barbatus, and Rosmarinus officinalis by gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS). Also was evaluated antimicrobial activity of ethanol extracts against 6 bacteria of clinical interest, and was tested the interaction of these extracts with a commercial antibiotic streptomycin. Phytol was a compound identified in all extracts by GC/MS, being majoritary component in Plectranthus barbatus and Rosmarinus officinalis. The Gram-positive bacteria were more sensitive to ethanol extracts, and Plectranthus barbatus and Rosmarinus officinalis were the most active extracts. Ethanol extracts exhibited a synergetic effect with streptomycin. These results encourage additional studies, in order to evaluate the possibilities of using ethanol extracts of Lamiaceae family as natural source for antibacterial activity. <![CDATA[<b><b>Antifungal activity against <i>Cryptococcus neoformans</i> strains and genotoxicity assessment in human leukocyte cells of <i>Euphorbia tirucalli</i> L.</b></b>]]> In the last times, focus on plant research has increased all over the world. Euphorbia tirucalli L., a plant known popularly as Aveloz, and originally used in Africa, has been drawing attention for its use in the United States and Latin America, both for use as an ornamental plant and as a medicinal plant. E. tirucalli L. is a member of the family Euphorbiaceae and contains many diterpenoids and triterpenoids, in particular phorbol esters, apparently the main constituent of this plant, which are assumed to be responsible for their activities in vivo and in vitro. The in vitro antifungal activities of Euphorbia tirucalli (L.) against opportunistic yeasts were studied using microbroth dilution assay. The results showed that aqueous extract and latex preparation were effective against ten clinical strains of Cryptococcus neoformans in vitro (Latex and extract MIC range of 3.2 - > 411 µg/mL). Aiming the safe use in humans, the genotoxic effects of E. tirucalli were evaluated in human leukocytes cells. Our data show that both aqueous extract and latex preparation have no genotoxic effect in human leukocytes cells in vitro. Although the results cannot be extrapolated by itself for use in vivo, they suggest a good perspective for a therapeutic application in future. In conclusion, our results show that the aqueous extract and latex preparation from E. tirucalli L. are antifungal agents effectives against several strains of C. neoformans and do not provoke DNA damage in human leukocyte cells, considering the concentrations tested. <![CDATA[<b>Immunological assays employed for the elucidation of an histoplasmosis outbreak in São Paulo, SP</b>]]> Several reports showed outbreaks of histoplasmosis acquired while bat-inhabited caves were visited by tourists, miners or researchers. We evaluated the performance of double immunodifusion (DI) and immunoblotting (IB) assays, employed for the histoplasmosis outbreak elucidation occurred in Vale do Paraíba, São Paulo. The existence of epidemiologic link, four patients with clinical signs suggestive of histoplasmosis and mycological confirmation has made that all 35 individuals involved to the cave visit were subjected to serological evaluation. By DI, we observed reactivity against H. capsulatum antigen in a single serum examined nearly 20 days after exposure to fungal propagules. On the other hand, IB showed reactivity against H and M fractions in 50% of samples evaluated. The analysis of the second sample batch, collected two months after the exposure showed that 96.7% were reactive by DI with antibodies titers ranging from 1 to 16 and 100% of reactivity against H and M fractions, by IB, suggesting an acute infection. The analysis of the overall agreement between the methods showed to be reasonable (κ = 0.37). This study confirms the importance and efficacy of more sensitive methodologies, such as IB assay, to early elucidation of disease, especially in cases of patients without mycological information. <![CDATA[<b>Validation of a real-time PCR assay for the molecular identification of <i>Mycobacterium tuberculosis</i></b>]]> Mycobacterium tuberculosis is the major cause of tuberculosis in humans. This bacillus gained prominence with the occurrence of HIV, presenting itself as an important opportunistic infection associated with acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). The current study aimed to develop a real-time PCR using Eva Green technology for molecular identification of M. tuberculosis isolates. The primers were designed to Rv1510 gene. Ninety nine samples of M. tuberculosis and sixty samples of M. bovis were tested and no sample of the bovine bacillus was detected by the qPCR. Statistical tests showed no difference between the qPCR and biochemical tests used to identify the Mycobacterium tuberculosis. The correlation between tests was perfect with Kappa index of 1.0 (p < 0.001, CI = 0.84 - 1.0). The diagnostic sensitivity and specificity were 100% (CI = 95.94% - 100%) and 100% (CI = 93.98% - 100%). This qPCR was developed with the goal of diagnosing the bacillus M. tuberculosis in samples of bacterial suspension. TB reference laboratories (health and agriculture sectors), public health programs and epidemiological studies probably may benefit from such method. <![CDATA[<b><i>Candida</i> species biofilm and <i>Candida</i> <i>albicans</i> <i>ALS3</i> polymorphisms in clinical isolates</b>]]> Over the last decades, there have been important changes in the epidemiology of Candida infections. In recent years, Candida species have emerged as important causes of invasive infections mainly among immunocompromised patients. This study analyzed Candida spp. isolates and compared the frequency and biofilm production of different species among the different sources of isolation: blood, urine, vulvovaginal secretions and peritoneal dialysis fluid. Biofilm production was quantified in 327 Candida isolates obtained from patients attended at a Brazilian tertiary public hospital (Botucatu, Sao Paulo). C. albicans ALS3 gene polymorphism was also evaluated by determining the number of repeated motifs in the central domain. Of the 198 total biofilm-positive isolates, 72 and 126 were considered as low and high biofilm producers, respectively. Biofilm production by C. albicans was significantly lower than that by non-albicans isolates and was most frequently observed in C. tropicalis. Biofilm production was more frequent among bloodstream isolates than other clinical sources,in urine, the isolates displayed a peculiar distribution by presenting two distinct peaks, one containing biofilm-negative isolates and the other containing isolates with intense biofilm production. The numbers of tandem-repeat copies per allele were not associated with biofilm production, suggesting the evolvement of other genetic determinants. <![CDATA[<b>Treatment with some anti-inflammatory drugs reduces germ tube formation in <i>Candida albicans</i> strains</b>]]> Candida albicans is an opportunistic dimorphic fungus that inhabits various host mucosal sites. It can cause both superficial and serious systemic disease. Conversion from the yeast to the hyphal form has been associated with increased virulence and mucosal invasiveness. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of sodium diclofenac and aspirin on germs tube formation of different Candida albicans strains. Prostaglandins may play an important role in fungal colonization. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs are inhibitors of the cyclooxygenase isoenzymes. These drugs specifically block the biosynthesis of mammalian prostaglandins by inhibiting one or both of cyclooxygenase isoenzymes. In tests for germ tube formation sodium diclofenac reduced the filamentation to the 12.5%- 5.1%. In the presence of aspirin the filamentation was reduced up to 85-45% depending on the tested strain. Our results suggest that cyclooxygenase-depending synthesis of fungal prostaglandins is important for morphogenesis and fungal virulence. Inhibitors of cyclooxygenase isoensymes (aspirin and diclofenac) are effective in decreasing germ tube formation of Candida albicans. <![CDATA[<b>Rapid detection of <i>Salmonella</i> Typhi by loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) method</b>]]> An in-house loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) reaction was established and evaluated for sensitivity and specificity in detecting the presence of Salmonella Typhi (S. Typhi) isolates from Kelantan, Malaysia. Three sets of primers consisting of two outer and 4 inner were designed based on locus STBHUCCB_38510 of chaperone PapD of S. Typhi genes. The reaction was optimised using genomic DNA of S. Typhi ATCC7251 as the template. The products were visualised directly by colour changes of the reaction. Positive results were indicated by green fluorescence and negative by orange colour. The test was further evaluated for specificity, sensitivity and application on field samples. The results were compared with those obtained by gold standard culture method and Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR). This method was highly specific and -10 times more sensitive in detecting S. Typhi compared to the optimised conventional polymerase chain reaction (PCR) method. <![CDATA[<b>Evaluation of antibacterial properties of Barium Zirconate Titanate (BZT) nanoparticle</b>]]> So far, the antibacterial activity of some organic and inorganic compounds has been studied. Barium zirconate titanate [Ba(Zr xTi1-x)O3] (x = 0.05) nanoparticle is an example of inorganic materials. In vitro studies have provided evidence for the antibacterial activity of this nanoparticle. In the current study, the nano-powder was synthesized by sol-gel method. X-ray diffraction showed that the powder was single-phase and had a perovskite structure at the calcination temperature of 1000 ºC. Antibacterial activity of the desired nanoparticle was assessed on two gram-positive (Staphylococcus aureus PTCC1431 and Micrococcus luteus PTCC1625) and two gram-negative (Escherichia coli HP101BA 7601c and clinically isolated Klebsiella pneumoniae) bacteria according to Radial Diffusion Assay (RDA). The results showed that the antibacterial activity of BZT nano-powder on both gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria was acceptable. The minimum inhibitory concentration of this nano-powder was determined. The results showed that MIC values for E. coli, K. pneumoniae, M. luteus and S. aureus were about 2.3 µg/mL, 7.3 µg/mL, 3 µg/mL and 12 µg/mL, respectively. Minimum bactericidal concentration (MBC) was also evaluated and showed that the growth of E. coli, K. pneumoniae, M. luteus and S. aureus could be decreased at 2.3, 14, 3 and 18 µg/mL of BZT. Average log reduction in viable bacteria count in time-kill assay ranged between 6 Log10 cfu/mL to zero after 24 h of incubation with BZT nanoparticle. <![CDATA[<b>Community-associated methicillin-resistant <i>Staphylococcus aureus</i> in non-outbreak skin infections</b>]]> The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of Staphylococcus aureus and risk factors for the acquisition of MRSA (Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus aureus) as the main cause of skin and soft tissue infections. S. aureus were characterized for the presence of PVL, TSST-1 and mecA genes. SCCmec typing was carried out in mecA positive strains and PFGE was performed only in these strains. During the study period, 127 outpatients attending a dermatology clinical the Botucatu Medical School, a regional tertiary hospital in Botucatu, Sao Paulo, Brazil, were diagnosed with active skin infections. A total 66 (56.9%) S. aureus strains were isolated. The methicillin resistance gene mecA was detected in seven (10.6%) S. aureus strains. The SCCmec types detected in the seven mecA-positive S. aureus strains were type Ia in one, type II in three, and type IV in three. The PVL gene was detected in 10 (15.1%) in sensitive strains. Pulsed field gel electrophoresis revealed non-clonal diversity among the isolates. The risk factors associated with MRSA acquisition in this study were previous ciprofloxacin use and working in a healthcare environment. The risk factors indicate plausible routes of CA-MRSA transmission among the subjects studied. <![CDATA[<b>Antibacterial activity of </b><b>α-terpineol may induce morphostructural alterations in <i>Escherichia coli</i></b>]]> The antibacterial effect of α-terpineol from Cinnamomum longepaniculatum (Gamble) N. Chao leaf essential oils were studied with special reference to the mechanism of inhibiting the standard strain of Escherichia coli (CMCC (B) 44102) growth at ultrastructural level. Minimal inhibitory concentration (MIC) and minimal bactericidal concentration (MBC) and time-kill curves of α-terpineol were determined; Escherichia coli was treated with α-terpineol and observed under a transmission electron microscope. The MIC and MBC values of α-terpineol were all 0.78 µL/mL, and time-kill curves showed the concentration-dependent. Under the transmission electron microscopy (TEM), Escherichia coli exposed to MIC levels of α-terpineol exhibited decreased cell size and irregular cell shape, cell wall and cell membrane were ruptured, nucleus cytoplasm was reduced and nuclear area gathered aside. Results suggest that α-terpineol has excellent antibacterial activity and could induce morphological changes of Escherichia coli. <![CDATA[<b>Procalcitonin and C-reactive protein in differantiating to contamination from bacteremia</b>]]> Procalcitonin (PCT) and C-reactive protein (CRP) are important biological markers used in the diagnosis of severe infections. The aim of this study was to evaluate the consistency of blood culture with PCT and CRP in differentiating contamination and non-bacteremia from true bacteremia. In this study blood samples were obtained from 809 febrile patients and analyzed using BACTEC 9120 system. All of positive blood cultures were performed Gram staining. The microorganisms were identified with conventional methods and automated systems. Antibiotic susceptibility tests were made by disc diffusion. PCT levels were analyzed by mini VIDAS device and PCT kit. PCT and CRP levels were analyzed with blood cultures in same times. Kruskal Wallis test, Mann-Whitney U test, Spearman's rho test and ROC curve were used for statistical analyses. The bacteremia group was found to be significantly different from non-bacteremia group and contamination group in terms of both PCT and CRP (p<0.0001). The p values of PCT and CRP in differentiating bacteremia from non-bacteremia were p<0.001 for PCT, p=0.002 for CRP and in differentiating bacteremia from contamination were p<0.001 for PCT, p<0.001 for CRP. PCT is a more useful marker than CRP in the differentiating of true bacteremia from contamination according to the results of this study. <![CDATA[<b><i>Proteus mirabilis</i> biofilm - Qualitative and quantitative colorimetric methods-based evaluation</b>]]> Proteus mirabilis strains ability to form biofilm is a current topic of a number of research worldwide. In this study the biofilm formation of P. mirabilis strains derived from urine of the catheterized and non-catheterized patients has been investigated. A total number of 39 P. mirabilis strains isolated from the urine samples of the patients of dr Antoni Jurasz University Hospital No. 1 in Bydgoszcz clinics between 2011 and 2012 was used. Biofilm formation was evaluated using two independent quantitative and qualitative methods with TTC (2,3,5-triphenyl-tetrazolium chloride) and CV (crystal violet) application. The obtained results confirmed biofilm formation by all the examined strains, except quantitative method with TTC, in which 7.7% of the strains did not have this ability. It was shown that P. mirabilis rods have the ability to form biofilm on the surfaces of both biomaterials applied, polystyrene and polyvinyl chloride (Nelaton catheters). The differences in ability to form biofilm observed between P. mirabilis strains derived from the urine of the catheterized and non-catheterized patients were not statistically significant. <![CDATA[<b>High seroprevalence of <i>Simkania negevensis</i> in Jordan</b>]]> The bacterium Simkania negevensis is a germ associated with respiratory diseases. This study aims at estimating the prevalence of Simkania in the Jordanian population. Serum samples from 664 Jordanian males and females, aged 2 to 86 years were collected. IgG and IgM Simkania-specific antibodies were detected using an indirect immunofluorescence test. Seropositivity titers for IgG and IgM were defined as 1:8 and 1:10, respectively. The overall prevalence of IgG antibody in all examined Jordanian nationals was 58.4%. IgG seropositivity was low in children under the age of 10 years (34.2%), and increased rapidly with age and ranged between 49.4% and 72%. Simkania-specific IgM was detected in 24.8% of subjects. IgM prevalence in children under 10 years was lowest (10.5%) and increased in older ages and remained above 20%. Overall detection rates of both IgG and IgM were significantly higher in females than males (60.7% vs. 54.5% for IgG and 26.7% vs. 21.7% for IgM). These data indicate that Simkania infection is highly prevalent in Jordan. The high level of seropositivity is most likely maintained by re-infections or chronic infections. Our data may serve as a basis to elucidate the pathogenesis of Simkania in Jordan. <![CDATA[<b>Antimicrobial susceptibility testing for <i>Helicobacter pylori</i> isolates from Brazilian children and adolescents</b>: <b>comparing agar dilution, E-test, and disk diffusion</b>]]> Antimicrobial susceptibility testing for Helicobacter pylori is increasingly important due to resistance to the most used antimicrobials agents. Only agar dilution method is approved by CLSI, but it is difficult to perform routinely. We evaluated the reliability of E-test and disk diffusion comparing to agar dilution method on Helicobacter pylori antimicrobial susceptibility testing. Susceptibility testing was performed for amoxicillin, clarithromycin, furazolidone, metronidazole and tetracycline using E-test, disk-diffusion and agar dilution method in 77 consecutive Helicobacter pylori strains from dyspeptic children and adolescents. Resistance rates were: amoxicillin - 10.4%, 9% and 68.8%; clarithromycin - 19.5%, 20.8%, 36.3%; metronidazole - 40.2%33.7%, 38.9%, respectively by agar dilution, E-test and disk diffusion method. Furazolidone and tetracycline showed no resistance rates. Metronidazole presented strong correlation to E-test (r = 0.7992, p < 0.0001) and disk diffusion method (r=-0.6962, p < 0.0001). Clarithromycin presented moderate correlation to E-test (r = 0.6369, p < 0.0001) and disk diffusion method (r=-0.5656, p < 0.0001). Amoxicillin presented weak correlation to E-test (r = 0.3565, p = 0.0015) and disk diffusion (r=-0.3565, p = 0.0015). Tetracycline presented weak correlation with E-test (r = 0.2346, p = 0.04) and furazolidone to disk diffusion (r=-0.0288, p = 0.8038). E-test presented better agreement with gold standard. It is an easy and reliable method for Helicobacter pylori susceptibility testing. Disk diffusion method presented high disagreement and high rates of major errors. <![CDATA[<b>Inflammatory response of <i>Haemophilus influenzae</i> biotype <i>aegyptius</i> causing Brazilian Purpuric Fever</b>]]> The Brazilian Purpuric Fever (BPF) is a systemic disease with many clinical features of meningococcal sepsis and is usually preceded by purulent conjunctivitis. The illness is caused by Haemophilus influenza biogroup aegyptius, which was associated exclusively with conjunctivitis. In this work construction of the las gene, hypothetically responsible for this virulence, were fusioned with ermAM cassette in Neisseria meningitidis virulent strains and had its DNA transfer to non BPF H. influenzae strains. The effect of the las transfer was capable to increase the cytokines TNFα and IL10 expression in Hec-1B cells line infected with these transformed mutants (in eight log scale of folding change RNA expression). This is the first molecular study involving the las transfer to search an elucidation of the pathogenic factors by horizontal intergeneric transfer from meningococci to H. influenzae. <![CDATA[<b>Prevalence of resistance to aminoglycosides and fluoroquinolones among <i>Pseudomonas</i> <i>aeruginosa</i> strains in a University Hospital in Northeastern Poland</b>]]> The present study was conducted to investigate the prevalence of genes encoding resistance to aminoglycosides and fluoroquinolones among twenty-five Pseudomonas aeruginosa isolated between 2002 and 2009. In PCR, following genes were detected: ant(2")-Ia in 9 (36.0%), aac(6')-Ib in 7 (28.0%), qnrB in 5 (20.0%), aph(3")-Ib in 2 (8.0%) of isolates. <![CDATA[<b>Screening of thermotolerant and thermophilic fungi aiming </b><b>β-xylosidase and arabinanase production</b>]]> Plant cell wall is mainly composed by cellulose, hemicellulose and lignin. The heterogeneous structure and composition of the hemicellulose are key impediments to its depolymerization and subsequent use in fermentation processes. Thus, this study aimed to perform a screening of thermophilic and thermotolerant filamentous fungi collected from different regions of the São Paulo state, and analyze the production of β-xylosidase and arabinanase at different temperatures. These enzymes are important to cell wall degradation and synthesis of end products as xylose and arabinose, respectively, which are significant sugars to fermentation and ethanol production. A total of 12 fungal species were analyzed and 9 of them grew at 45 ºC, suggesting a thermophilic or thermotolerant character. Additionally Aspergillus thermomutatus anamorph of Neosartorya and A. parasiticus grew at 50 ºC. Aspergillus niger and Aspergillus thermomutatus were the filamentous fungi with the most expressive production of β-xylosidase and arabinanase, respectively. In general for most of the tested microorganisms, β-xylosidase and arabinanase activities from mycelial extract (intracellular form) were higher in cultures grown at high temperatures (35-40 ºC), while the correspondent extracellular activities were favorably secreted from cultures at 30 ºC. This study contributes to catalogue isolated fungi of the state of São Paulo, and these findings could be promising sources for thermophilic and thermotolerant microorganisms, which are industrially important due to their enzymes. <![CDATA[<b>New cultive medium for bioconversion of C5 fraction from sugarcane bagasse using rice bran extract</b>]]> The use of hemicellulosic hydrolysates in bioprocesses requires supplementation as to ensure the best fermentative performance of microorganisms. However, in light of conflicting data in the literature, it is necessary to establish an inexpensive and applicable medium for the development of bioprocesses. This paper evaluates the fermentative performance of Scheffersomyces (Pichia) stipitis and Candida guilliermondii growth in sugarcane bagasse hemicellulosic hydrolysate supplemented with different nitrogen sources including rice bran extract, an important by-product of agroindustry and source of vitamins and amino acids. Experiments were carried out with hydrolysate supplemented with rice bran extract and (NH4)2SO4; peptone and yeast extract; (NH4)2SO4, peptone and yeast extract and non-supplemented hydrolysate as a control. S. stipitis produced only ethanol, while C. guilliermondii produced xylitol as the main product and ethanol as by-product. Maximum ethanol production by S. stipitis was observed when sugarcane bagasse hemicellulosic hydrolysate was supplemented with (NH4)2SO4, peptone and yeast extract. Differently, the maximum xylitol formation by C. guilliermondii was obtained by employing hydrolysate supplemented with (NH4)2SO4 and rice bran extract. Together, these findings indicate that: a) for both yeasts (NH4)2SO4 was required as an inorganic nitrogen source to supplement sugarcane bagasse hydrolysate; b) for S. stipitis, sugarcane hemicellulosic hydrolysate must be supplemented with peptone and yeast extract as organic nitrogen source; and: c) for C. guilliermondii, it must be supplemented with rice bran extract. The present study designed a fermentation medium employing hemicellulosic hydrolysate and provides a basis for studies about value-added products as ethanol and xylitol from lignocellulosic materials. <![CDATA[<b>Reducing lactate secretion by <i>ldhA</i> Deletion in L-glutamate- producing strain <i>Corynebacterium glutamicum</i> GDK-9</b>]]> L-lactate is one of main byproducts excreted in to the fermentation medium. To improve L-glutamate production and reduce L-lactate accumulation, L-lactate dehydrogenase-encoding gene ldhA was knocked out from L-glutamate producing strain Corynebacterium glutamicum GDK-9, designated GDK-9ΔldhA. GDK-9ΔldhA produced approximately 10.1% more L-glutamate than the GDK-9, and yielded lower levels of such by-products as α-ketoglutarate, L-lactate and L-alanine. Since dissolved oxygen (DO) is one of main factors affecting L-lactate formation during L-glutamate fermentation, we investigated the effect of ldhA deletion from GDK-9 under different DO conditions. Under both oxygen-deficient and high oxygen conditions, L-glutamate production by GDK-9ΔldhA was not higher than that of the GDK-9. However, under micro-aerobic conditions, GDK-9ΔldhA exhibited 11.61% higher L-glutamate and 58.50% lower L-alanine production than GDK-9. Taken together, it is demonstrated that deletion of ldhA can enhance L-glutamate production and lower the unwanted by-products concentration, especially under micro-aerobic conditions. <![CDATA[<b>Production of plant cell wall degrading enzymes by monoculture and co-culture of <i>Aspergillus niger</i> and <i>Aspergillus terreus</i> under SSF of banana peels</b>]]> Filamentous fungi are considered to be the most important group of microorganisms for the production of plant cell wall degrading enzymes (CWDE), in solid state fermentations. In this study, two fungal strains Aspergillus niger MS23 and Aspergillus terreus MS105 were screened for plant CWDE such as amylase, pectinase, xylanase and cellulases (β-glucosidase, endoglucanase and filterpaperase) using a novel substrate, Banana Peels (BP) for SSF process. This is the first study, to the best of our knowledge, to use BP as SSF substrate for plant CWDE production by co-culture of fungal strains. The titers of pectinase were significantly improved in co-culture compared to mono-culture. Furthermore, the enzyme preparations obtained from monoculture and co-culture were used to study the hydrolysis of BP along with some crude and purified substrates. It was observed that the enzymatic hydrolysis of different crude and purified substrates accomplished after 26 h of incubation, where pectin was maximally hydrolyzed by the enzyme preparations of mono and co-culture. Along with purified substrates, crude materials were also proved to be efficiently degraded by the cocktail of the CWDE. These results demonstrated that banana peels may be a potential substrate in solid-state fermentation for the production of plant cell wall degrading enzymes to be used for improving various biotechnological and industrial processes. <![CDATA[<b>Microbial mediated preparation, characterization and optimization of gold nanoparticles</b>]]> The need for eco-friendly and cost effective methods for nanoparticles synthesis is developing interest in biological approaches which are free from the use of toxic chemicals as byproducts. This study aimed to biosynthesize and optimize the size of gold nanoparticles which produced by biotechnological method using Penicillium crustosum isolated from soil. Initially, Penicillium crustosum was grown in fluid czapek dox broth on shaker at 28 ºC and 200 rpm for ten days and then the supernatant was separated from the mycelia to convert AuCl4 solution into gold nanoparticles. The synthesized nanoparticles in the optimum conditions were formed with fairly well-defined dimensions and good monodispersity. The characterizations were done by using different methods (UV-Visible Spectroscopy, Fluorescence, FT-IR, AFM (Atomic Force Microscopy) and DLS (Dynamic Light Scattering). The bioconversion was optimized by Box-Behnken experimental design. The results show that the effective factors in this process were concentration of AuCl4, pH of medium and temperature of shaker incubator. The R² value was calculated to be 0.9999 indicating the accuracy and ability of the polynomial model. It can be concluded that the use of multivariate analysis facilitated to find out the optimum conditions for the biosynthesis of gold nanoparticles induced by Penicillium crustosum in a time and cost effective process. The current approach suggested that rapid synthesis of gold nanoparticles would be suitable for developing a biological process for mass scale production of formulations. <![CDATA[<b>Production and characterization of an extracellular lipase from <i>Candida guilliermondii</i></b>]]> Extracellular lipases from the endophytic yeast Candida guilliermondii isolated from castor leaves (Ricinus communis L.) were produced using low-cost raw materials such as agro-industrial residues and applying them in the esterification of oleic acid for evaluating their potential use in biodiesel production. After partial purification using ammonium sulfate, the enzyme was characterized and presented higher activity (26.8 ± 1.5 U mL-1) in the presence of 5 mmol L-1 NaCl at 30 ºC and pH 6.5. The production through submerged fermentation was formerly performed in 150 mL erlenmeyer flasks and, once the enzyme production was verified, assays in a 14 L bioreactor were conducted, obtaining 18 ± 1.4 U mL-1. The produced enzyme was applied in the oleic acid esterification under different solvents: hexane, cyclohexane or cyclohexanone) and different acid:alcohol molar ratios. Higher ester conversion rate (81%) was obtained using hexane and the molar ratio of 1:9 was the best conditions using methanol. The results suggest the potential for development of endophytic yeast in the production of biocatalyst through submerged fermentation using agroindustrial residues as culture medium. <![CDATA[<b><b>Experimental infection of BHK21 and Vero cell lines with different <i>Mycoplasma</i> spp.</b></b>]]> Mycoplasma spp, belongs to the class Mollicutes and is capable to produce alterations in cellular cultures causing damages to the biotechnological industry. Bioproducts generally require two essential inputs, bovine serum and cells. The study herein aims to evaluate the mycoplasma concentrations that affect the growing of BHK21 and Vero cells. The species used were: Mycoplasma orale, M. salivarium, M. arginini and M. hyorhinis, cultivated in a SP4 media. Two contamination tests were performed with BHK21 and Vero cells and one of them applied different concentrations of mycoplasma. In the first one, mycoplasma was applied at the day zero and, in the second one, the contamination was performed after the monolayer establishment. The both cellular cultures presented cytopathic effects with mycoplasma contamination, but the Vero cells suffered more damages than the BHK21 ones. It was also observed that the severity of the cytopathic effect depended on the mycoplasma specie, on the concentration and on the time of contact with the cellular culture, which evidences the importance of controlling the presence of mycoplasma in biotechnological industries. <![CDATA[<b>Immune response elicited by the oral administration of an intermediate strain of IBDV in chickens</b>]]> The immune response elicited by the oral inoculation of an intermediate strain of infectious bursal disease virus was studied in chickens. A strong over expression of IL-6, IL-8, IFNα and IFNγ was observed in bursa at 3 days post inoculation together with an increase in splenic NO2 release. An influx of T-lymphocytes was also detected. <![CDATA[<b>Molecular characterization of the first leptospires isolated from goats in Brazil</b>]]> Two Leptospira sp. isolates were obtained by the first time from goats in Brazil and characterized by sequencing rrs, rpoB and secY genes, PFGE and typing with monoclonal antibodies. Both isolates are identical and belong to Leptospira santarosai. Analysis of the rrs and the rpoB genes sequences revealed 100% identity between the goat isolates and the Bananal reference strain. When secY sequences of the two isolates were compared to each other, it was observed that they had identical sequences. However, when compared to that of the Bananal reference strain, there were 15 mismatches along the 549 bp secY sequence. In conclusion, molecular methods are increasingly useful for the characterization of leptospires and allowed to identify those isolates of caprine origin as closely related but not identical to serovar Bananal, and constitute a new type named Carioca. <![CDATA[<b>Nasal, oral and rectal microbiota of Black lion tamarins (<i>Leontopithecus chrysopygus</i>)</b>]]> Black lion tamarins (Leontopithecus chrysopygus) are endangered callithrichids. Their conservation may require future translocations or reintroductions; however these approaches involve risks of pathogen introduction in the environment and stress-related opportunistic infections in these animals. In order to screen for opportunistic and potential pathogenic bacterial and fungal microbiota, ten free-ranging and ten captive Black lion tamarins were studied and the results compared. Nasal, oral and rectal swabs were collected and cultured for aerobic and facultative anaerobic bacteria and fungi, and a total 203 bacterial and 84 fungal isolates were obtained. Overall, the most frequent organisms were Staphylococcus spp., Bacillus spp., Candida spp. and Aspergillus spp. Microbiota of free-ranging and captive animals were similar in composition. A number of potentially pathogenic organisms were identified, emphasizing the importance of microbiological screening in future translocation or reintroduction conservation management programs. <![CDATA[<b>Bacteriocinogenic <i>Lactococcus lactis</i> subsp. <i>lactis</i> DF04Mi isolated from goat milk</b>: <b>characterization of the bacteriocin</b>]]> Lactic acid bacteria capable of producing bacteriocins and presenting probiotic potential open innovative technological applications in the dairy industry. In this study, a bacteriocinogenic strain (Lactococcus lactis subsp. lactis DF4Mi) was isolated from goat milk, and studied for its antimicrobial activity. The bacteriocin presented a broad spectrum of activity, was sensitive to proteolytic enzymes, resistant to heat and pH extremes, and not affected by the presence of SDS, Tween 20, Tween 80, EDTA or NaCl. Bacteriocin production was dependent on the components of the culture media, especially nitrogen source and salts. When tested by PCR, the bacteriocin gene presented 100% homology to nisin Z gene. These properties indicate that this L. lactis subsp. lactis DF4Mi can be used for enhancement of dairy foods safety and quality. <![CDATA[<b>Detection of thermophilic <i>Campylobacter</i> sp. in raw chicken sausages by methods ISO 10272</b>: <b>2006 in Curitiba - Parana State - Brazil</b>]]> The aim of this study was the detection of Campylobacter sp. in raw chicken sausages using the methods ISO 10272-1 and ISO 10272-2. The overall prevalence of Campylobacter sp. in the samples tested was 16.67%, representing a serious risk to the health of consumers, particularly if measures guaranteeing proper cooking of foods and prevention of cross-contamination are not adopted. Furthermore, the majority of campylobacteriosis cases in humans are caused by consumption or improper handling of contaminated raw or undercooked poultry meat, which constitute the main vehicle of this infection. <![CDATA[<b>Efficient assembly of full-length infectious clone of Brazilian IBDV isolate by homologous recombination in yeast</b>]]> The Infectious Bursal Disease Virus (IBDV) causes immunosuppression in young chickens. Advances in molecular virology and vaccines for IBDV have been achieved by viral reverse genetics (VRG). VRG for IBDV has undergone changes over time, however all strategies used to generate particles of IBDV involves multiple rounds of amplification and need of in vitro ligation and restriction sites. The aim of this research was to build the world's first VRG for IBDV by yeast-based homologous recombination; a more efficient, robust and simple process than cloning by in vitro ligation. The wild type IBDV (Wt-IBDV-Br) was isolated in Brazil and had its genome cloned in pJG-CMV-HDR vector by yeast-based homologous recombination. The clones were transfected into chicken embryo fibroblasts and the recovered virus (IC-IBDV-Br) showed genetic stability and similar phenotype to Wt-IBDV-Br, which were observed by nucleotide sequence, focus size/morphology and replication kinetics, respectively. Thus, IBDV reverse genetics by yeast-based homologous recombination provides tools to IBDV understanding and vaccines/viral vectors development.