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Brazilian Journal of Medical and Biological Research, Volume: 32, Issue: 6, Published: 1999
  • Two research paths for probing the roles of oxygen in metabolic regulation Review

    Hochachka, P.W.

    Abstract in English:

    Tissues such as skeletal and cardiac muscles must sustain very large-scale changes in ATP turnover rate during equally large changes in work. In many skeletal muscles these changes can exceed 100-fold. Examination of a number of cell and whole-organism level systems identifies ATP concentration as a key parameter of the interior milieu that is nearly universally 'homeostatic'; it is common to observe no change in ATP concentration even while change in its turnover rate can increase or decrease by two orders of magnitude or more. A large number of other intermediates of cellular metabolism are also regulated within narrow concentration ranges, but none seemingly as precisely as is [ATP]. In fact, the only other metabolite in aerobic energy metabolism that is seemingly as 'homeostatic' is oxygen - at least in working muscles where myoglobin serves to buffer oxygen concentrations at stable and constant values at work rates up to the aerobic maximum. In contrast to intracellular oxygen concentration, a 1:1 relationship between oxygen delivery and metabolic rate is observed over biologically realistic and large-magnitude changes in work. The central regulatory question is how the oxygen delivery signal is transmitted to the intracellular metabolic machinery. Traditional explanations assume diffusion as the dominant mechanism, while proponents of an ultrastructurally dominated view of the cell assume an intracellular perfusion system to account for the data which have been most perplexing to metabolic biochemistry so far: the striking lack of correlation between changes in pathway reaction rates and changes in concentrations of pathway substrates, including oxygen and pathway intermediates.
  • Partially folded intermediates during trypsinogen denaturation Biochemistry And Molecular Biology

    Martins, N.F.; Santoro, M.M.

    Abstract in English:

    The equilibrium unfolding of bovine trypsinogen was studied by circular dichroism, differential spectra and size exclusion HPLC. The change in free energy of denaturation was <img SRC="http:/img/fbpe/bjmbr/v32n6/3282sup.gif" ALIGN="BOTTOM" BORDER="0" VSPACE="0" HSPACE="0"> = 6.99 ± 1.40 kcal/mol for guanidine hydrochloride and <img SRC="http:/img/fbpe/bjmbr/v32n6/3282sup.gif" ALIGN="BOTTOM" BORDER="0" VSPACE="0" HSPACE="0"> = 6.37 ± 0.57 kcal/mol for urea. Satisfactory fits of equilibrium unfolding transitions required a three-state model involving an intermediate in addition to the native and unfolded forms. Size exclusion HPLC allowed the detection of an intermediate population of trypsinogen whose Stokes radii varied from 24.1 ± 0.4 Å to 26.0 ± 0.3 Å for 1.5 M and 2.5 M guanidine hydrochloride, respectively. During urea denaturation, the range of Stokes radii varied from 23.9 ± 0.3 Å to 25.7 ± 0.6 Å for 4.0 M and 6.0 M urea, respectively. Maximal intrinsic fluorescence was observed at about 3.8 M urea with 8-aniline-1-naphthalene sulfonate (ANS) binding. These experimental data indicate that the unfolding of bovine trypsinogen is not a simple transition and suggest that the equilibrium intermediate population comprises one intermediate that may be characterized as a molten globule. To obtain further insight by studying intermediates representing different stages of unfolding, we hope to gain a better understanding of the complex interrelations between protein conformation and energetics.
  • The erythrocyte cytoskeleton protein 4.2 is not demonstrable in several mammalian species Biochemistry And Molecular Biology

    Guerra-Shinohara, E.M.; Barretto, O.C. de O.

    Abstract in English:

    Erythrocyte membrane proteins from 44 representative mammals were studied. Protein 4.2 was not detected in guinea pigs (Cavia porcellus) (N = 14), Southern Brazilian swamp large rats (Myocastor coypus) (N = 2), cutias (Dasyprocta sp) (N = 4), and horses (Equus caballus) (N = 13). These animals also presented high ankyrin concentrations except for the horse which did not exhibit a sharp band, although minor components located between proteins 2 and 3 could account for the ankyrin family. The rodents studied did present band 6, which was not detectable in other common rodents such as white rats (Rattus norvegicus) (N = 9) and mice (Mus musculus) (N = 12). Since the absence of protein 4.2 does not disrupt the cytoskeleton membrane, we suggest that it is not an essential protein. Its absence may be compensated physiologically by the higher ankyrin concentration observed.
  • Lipid peroxidation, antioxidant enzymes and glutathione levels in human erythrocytes exposed to colloidal iron hydroxide in vitro Clinical Investigation

    Ferreira, A.L.A.; Machado, P.E.A.; Matsubara, L.S.

    Abstract in English:

    The free form of the iron ion is one of the strongest oxidizing agents in the cellular environment. The effect of iron at different concentrations (0, 1, 5, 10, 50, and 100 µM Fe3+) on the normal human red blood cell (RBC) antioxidant system was evaluated in vitro by measuring total (GSH) and oxidized (GSSG) glutathione levels, and superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase, glutathione peroxidase (GSH-Px) and reductase (GSH-Rd) activities. Membrane lipid peroxidation was assessed by measuring thiobarbituric acid reactive substance (TBARS). The RBC were incubated with colloidal iron hydroxide and phosphate-buffered saline, pH 7.45, at 37oC, for 60 min. For each assay, the results for the control group were: a) GSH = 3.52 ± 0.27 µM/g Hb; b) GSSG = 0.17 ± 0.03 µM/g Hb; c) GSH-Px = 19.60 ± 1.96 IU/g Hb; d) GSH-Rd = 3.13 ± 0.17 IU/g Hb; e) catalase = 394.9 ± 22.8 IU/g Hb; f) SOD = 5981 ± 375 IU/g Hb. The addition of 1 to 100 µM Fe3+ had no effect on the parameters analyzed. No change in TBARS levels was detected at any of the iron concentrations studied. Oxidative stress, measured by GSH kinetics over time, occurs when the RBC are incubated with colloidal iron hydroxide at concentrations higher than 10 µM of Fe3+. Overall, these results show that the intact human RBC is prone to oxidative stress when exposed to Fe3+ and that the RBC has a potent antioxidant system that can minimize the potential damage caused by acute exposure to a colloidal iron hydroxide in vitro.
  • Fetal hemoglobin levels are related to metabolic control in diabetic subjects Clinical Investigation

    Pardini, V.C.; Victória, I.M.N.; Pieroni, F.B.; Milagres, G.; Nascimento, P.D.; Velho, G.; Purisch, S.; Pardini, H.

    Abstract in English:

    We have investigated the relationship between fetal hemoglobin (HbF) levels and metabolic control in subjects with insulin-dependent (N = 79) and non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (N = 242). HbF and hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) levels were increased in subjects with type 1 and type 2 diabetes as compared to levels in nondiabetic individuals (P<0.0001), and were significantly higher in type 1 than in type 2 diabetes subjects. Lower levels of HbA1c and HbF were observed in type 2 diabetes subjects treated by diet, intermediate levels in those treated with oral hypoglycemic agents, and higher levels in those treated with insulin. HbF and HbA1c levels were correlated in type 1 diabetes (R2 = 0.57, P<0.0001) and type 2 diabetes (R2 = 0.58, P<0.0001) subjects. Following intense treatment, twelve diabetic patients showed significant improvement both in HbA1c and HbF values. We conclude that increased HbF levels reflect poor metabolic control in subjects with diabetes mellitus.
  • Reference values for lung function tests: I. Static volumes Clinical Investigation

    Neder, J.A.; Andreoni, S.; Castelo-Filho, A.; Nery, L.E.

    Abstract in English:

    Static lung volume (LV) measurements have a number of clinical and research applications; however, no previous studies have provided reference values for such tests using a healthy sample of the adult Brazilian population. With this as our main purpose, we prospectively evaluated 100 non-smoking subjects (50 males and 50 females), 20 to 80 years old, randomly selected from more than 8,000 individuals. Gender-specific linear prediction equations were developed by multiple regression analysis with total lung capacity (TLC), functional residual capacity (FRC), residual volume (RV), RV/TLC ratio and inspiratory capacity (IC) as dependent variables, and with age, height, weight, lean body mass and indexes of physical fitness as independent ones. Simpler demographic and anthropometric variables were as useful as more complex measurements in predicting LV values, independent of gender and age (R2 values ranging from 0.49 to 0.78, P<0.001). Interestingly, prediction equations from North American and European studies overestimated the LV at low volumes and underestimated them at high volumes (P<0.05). Our results, therefore, provide a more appropriate frame of reference to evaluate the normalcy of static lung volume values in Brazilian males and females aged 20 to 80 years.
  • Reference values for lung function tests: II. Maximal respiratory pressures and voluntary ventilation Clinical Investigation

    Neder, J.A.; Andreoni, S.; Lerario, M.C.; Nery, L.E.

    Abstract in English:

    The strength of the respiratory muscles can be evaluated from static measurements (maximal inspiratory and expiratory pressures, MIP and MEP) or inferred from dynamic maneuvers (maximal voluntary ventilation, MVV). Although these data could be suitable for a number of clinical and research applications, no previous studies have provided reference values for such tests using a healthy, randomly selected sample of the adult Brazilian population. With this main purpose, we prospectively evaluated 100 non-smoking subjects (50 males and 50 females), 20 to 80 years old, selected from more than 8,000 individuals. Gender-specific linear prediction equations for MIP, MEP and MVV were developed by multiple regression analysis: age and, secondarily, anthropometric measurements explained up to 56% of the variability of the dependent variables. The most cited previous studies using either Caucasian or non-Caucasian samples systematically underestimated the observed values of MIP (P<0.05). Interestingly, the self-reported level of regular physical activity and maximum aerobic power correlates strongly with both respiratory and peripheral muscular strength (knee extensor peak torque) (P<0.01). Our results, therefore, provide a new frame of reference to evaluate the normalcy of some useful indexes of respiratory muscle strength in Brazilian males and females aged 20 to 80.
  • Reference values for lung function tests: III. Carbon monoxide diffusing capacity (transfer factor) Clinical Investigation

    Neder, J.A.; Andreoni, S.; Peres, C.; Nery, L.E.

    Abstract in English:

    Carbon monoxide diffusing capacity (DLCO) or transfer factor (TLCO) is a particularly useful test of the appropriateness of gas exchange across the lung alveolocapillary membrane. With the purpose of establishing predictive equations for DLCO using a non-smoking sample of the adult Brazilian population, we prospectively evaluated 100 subjects (50 males and 50 females aged 20 to 80 years), randomly selected from more than 8,000 individuals. Gender-specific linear prediction equations were developed by multiple regression analysis with single breath (SB) absolute and volume-corrected (VA) DLCO values as dependent variables. In the prediction equations, age (years) and height (cm) had opposite effects on DLCOSB (ml min-1 mmHg-1), independent of gender (-0.13 (age) + 0.32 (height) - 13.07 in males and -0.075 (age) + 0.18 (height) + 0.20 in females). On the other hand, height had a positive effect on DLCOSB but a negative one on DLCOSB/VA (P<0.01). We found that the predictive values from the most cited studies using predominantly Caucasian samples were significantly different from the actually measured values (P<0.05). Furthermore, oxygen uptake at maximal exercise (VO2max) correlated highly to DLCOSB (R = 0.71, P<0.001); this variable, however, did not maintain an independent role to explain the VO2max variability in the multiple regression analysis (P>0.05). Our results therefore provide an original frame of reference for either DLCOSB or DLCOSB/VA in Brazilian males and females aged 20 to 80 years, obtained from the standardized single-breath technique.
  • The Lebanese mutation as an important cause of familial hypercholesterolemia in Brazil Clinical Investigation

    Alberto, F.L.; Figueiredo, M.S.; Zago, M.A.; Araújo, A.G.; Dos-Santos, J.E.

    Abstract in English:

    Familial hypercholesterolemia (FH) is a common autosomal disorder that affects about one in 500 individuals in most Western populations and is caused by a defect in the low-density-lipoprotein receptor (LDLr) gene. In this report we determined the molecular basis of FH in 59 patients from 31 unrelated Brazilian families. All patients were screened for the Lebanese mutation, gross abnormalities of the LDLr gene, and the point mutation in the codon 3500 of the apolipoprotein B-100 gene. None of the 59 patients presented the apoB-3500 mutation, suggesting that familial defective ApoB-100 (FDB) is not a major cause of inherited hypercholesterolemia in Brazil. A novel 4-kb deletion in the LDLr gene, spanning from intron 12 to intron 14, was characterized in one family. Both 5' and 3' breakpoint regions were located within Alu repetitive sequences, which are probably involved in the crossing over that generated this rearrangement. The Lebanese mutation was detected in 9 of the 31 families, always associated with Arab ancestry. Two different LDLr gene haplotypes were demonstrated in association with the Lebanese mutation. Our results suggest the importance of the Lebanese mutation as a cause of FH in Brazil and by analogy the same feature may be expected in other countries with a large Arab population, such as North American and Western European countries.
  • A liquid phase blocking ELISA for the detection of antibodies against infectious bronchitis virus Immunology

    Cardoso, T.C.; Mouro-Sousa, R.L.; Oliveira, C.; Stringhini, G.; Augusto-Pinto, A.

    Abstract in English:

    A liquid phase blocking ELISA (LPB-ELISA) was developed for the detection and measurement of antibodies against infectious bronchitis virus (IBV). The purified and nonpurified virus used as antigen, the capture and detector antibodies, and the chicken hyperimmune sera were prepared and standardized for this purpose. A total of 156 sera from vaccinated and 100 from specific pathogen-free chickens with no recorded contact with the virus were tested. The respective serum titers obtained in the serum neutralization test (SNT) were compared with those obtained in the LPB-ELISA. There was a high correlation (r2 = 0.8926) between the two tests. The LPB-ELISA represents a single test suitable for the rapid detection of antibodies against bronchitis virus in chicken sera, with good sensitivity (88%), specificity (100%) and agreement (95.31%).
  • Administration of interferon-<FONT FACE=Symbol>g</font> to pregnant rats reverses the depressed adjuvant-induced arthritis of their chronically Trypanosoma cruzi-infected offspring Immunology

    Didoli, G.; Revelli, S.; Davila, H.; Ferro, M.E.; Romero-Piffiguer, M.; Bottasso, O.

    Abstract in English:

    We demonstrated that administration of interferon gamma (IFN-<FONT FACE="Symbol">g</font>) to the inbred "l" strain of pregnant rats conferred partial resistance on their offspring to challenge with Trypanosoma cruzi. We now examine if this intervention also modifies the reportedly immunodepressed cellular responses which occur during chronic infection. Offspring were born to mothers undergoing one of the following procedures during gestation: subcutaneous injections of recombinant rat IFN-<FONT FACE="Symbol">g</font>, 50,000 IU/rat, five times/week for 3 weeks, which was started on the day of mating (IFN-Mo); infection with 106 trypomastigotes of T. cruzi at 7, 14, and 21 days after mating plus IFN-<FONT FACE="Symbol">g</font> treatment as given to the former group (TcIFN-Mo); the same protocol except that physiological saline was injected instead of IFN-<FONT FACE="Symbol">g</font> (Tc-Mo); injection of physiological saline only (control-Mo). All offspring groups (N = 8-10/group) were infected at weaning and were assessed 90 days later for their adjuvant-induced arthritic response or levels of major T cell subsets in spleen and lymph nodes. TcIFN-Mo and IFN-Mo offspring showed a reestablished arthritic response, which remained within the range seen in controls. Immunolabeling studies on parallel groups of 90-day-infected offspring showed that the inverse CD4/CD8 cell ratio that is usually seen in lymphoid organs from these chronically infected rats (median 0.61) appeared to have recovered in the TcIFN-Mo and IFN-Mo groups (median 1.66 and 1.78, respectively) and was not different from uninfected controls (1.96). These studies indicate that early stimulation with IFN-<FONT FACE="Symbol">g</font> is able to reverse the immunosuppressive state that is usually present during the chronic period of the experimental infection.
  • Effects of aluminum sulfate on delta-aminolevulinate dehydratase from kidney, brain, and liver of adult mice Pharmacology

    Schetinger, M.R.C.; Bonan, C.D.; Morsch, V.M.; Bohrer, D.; Valentim, L.M.; Rodrigues, S.R.

    Abstract in English:

    The purpose of the present study was to investigate the in vitro and in vivo effects of aluminum sulfate on delta-aminolevulinic acid dehydratase (ALA-D) activity from the brain, liver and kidney of adult mice (Swiss albine). In vitro experiments showed that the aluminum sulfate concentration needed to inhibit the enzyme activity was 1.0-5.0 mM (N = 3) in brain, 4.0-5.0 mM (N = 3) in liver and 0.0-5.0 mM (N = 3) in kidney. The in vivo experiments were performed on three groups for one month: 1) control animals (N = 8); 2) animals treated with 1 g% (34 mM) sodium citrate (N = 8) and 3) animals treated with 1 g% (34 mM) sodium citrate plus 3.3 g% (49.5 mM) aluminum sulfate (N = 8). Exposure to aluminum sulfate in drinking water inhibited ALA-D activity in kidney (23.3 ± 3.7%, mean ± SEM, P<0.05 compared to control), but enhanced it in liver (31.2 ± 15.0%, mean ± SEM, P<0.05). The concentrations of aluminum in the brain, liver and kidney of adult mice were determined by graphite furnace atomic absorption spectrometry. The aluminum concentrations increased significantly in the liver (527 ± 3.9%, mean ± SEM, P<0.05) and kidney (283 ± 1.7%, mean ± SEM, P<0.05) but did not change in the brain of aluminum-exposed mice. One of the most important and striking observations was the increase in hepatic aluminum concentration in the mice treated only with 1 g% sodium citrate (34 mM) (217 ± 1.5%, mean ± SEM, P<0.05 compared to control). These results show that aluminum interferes with delta-aminolevulinate dehydratase activity in vitro and in vivo. The accumulation of this element was in the order: liver > kidney > brain. Furthermore, aluminum had only inhibitory properties in vitro, while in vivo it inhibited or stimulated the enzyme depending on the organ studied.
  • An optically coupled power stimulus isolation unit with high voltage and fast rise time output Physiology And Biophysics

    Brasil, R.O.; Leal-Cardoso, J.H.

    Abstract in English:

    Recent technological developments have created new devices that could improve and simplify the construction of stimulus isolators. HEXFET transistors can switch large currents and hundreds of volts in nanoseconds. The newer opto-isolators can give a pulse rise time of a few nanoseconds, with output compatible with MOSFET devices, in which delays are reduced to nanoseconds. Integrated DC/DC converters are now available. Using these new resources we developed a new electrical stimulus isolator circuit with selectable constant-current and constant-voltage modes, which are precise and easy to construct. The circuit works like a regulated power supply in both modes with output switched to zero or to free mode through an opto-isolator device. The isolator analyses showed good practical performance. The output to ground resistance was 1011 ohms and capacitance 35 picofarads. The rise time and fall time were identical (5 µs) and constant. The selectable voltage or current output mode made it very convenient to use. The current mode, with higher output resistance values in low current ranges, permits intracellular stimulation even with tip resistances close to 100 megaohms. The high compliance of 200 V guarantees the value of the current stimulus. The very low output resistance in the voltage mode made the device highly suitable for extracellular stimulation with low impedance electrodes. Most importantly, these characteristics were achieved with a circuit that was easy to build and modify and assembled with components available in Brazil.
  • Developed pressure data may provide misinformation when used alone to evaluate systolic function in isovolumetric left ventricle preparations Physiology And Biophysics

    Murad, N.; Tucci, P.J.F.

    Abstract in English:

    We report data showing that developed pressure (DPmax) may lead to opposite conclusion with respect to maximal developed circumferential wall stress (<FONT FACE="Symbol">s</FONT>max) when used to assess contractile function in left ventricle isovolumic preparations. Isovolumetric left ventricle preparations of rats with cardiac hypertrophy (H; N = 10) induced by isoproterenol administration showed higher DPmax (174 ± 14 mmHg) than control (C; N = 8) animals (155 ± 12 mmHg) or rats with regression (R; N = 8) of hypertrophy (144 ± 11 mmHg). In contrast, the estimated <FONT FACE="Symbol">s</FONT>max for C (145 ± 26 kdynes/cm2) and R (133 ± 17 kdynes/cm2) was higher than for H (110 ± 13 kdynes/cm2). According to Laplace's law, the opposite results of DPmax and <FONT FACE="Symbol">s</FONT>max may depend on the increased mass/volume left ventricle ratio of the hypertrophied hearts, which favored pressure generation. These results clearly show that DPmax should be used with caution to analyze systolic function.
  • Role of bradykinin in postprandial hypotension in humans Physiology And Biophysics

    Tumilero, S.; Gallo Jr., L.; Foss, M.C.; Gouveia, L.M.F.; Reis, M.L.; Rothschild, A.M.

    Abstract in English:

    A transient significant decrease in mean arterial blood pressure (MAP) from 107 ± 3 to 98 ± 3 mmHg (P<0.05) was observed in elderly (59-69 years of age), healthy volunteers 25-30 min following ingestion of a test meal. In young volunteers (22-34 years of age), a postprandial decrease of MAP from 88 ± 3 to 83 ± 4 mmHg was also noted but it was not statistically significant. A 40% decrease in bradykinin (BK) content of circulatory high molecular weight kininogen had previously been observed in human subjects given the same test meal. We presently demonstrate by specific ELISA that the stable pentapeptide metabolite (1-5 BK) of BK increases from 2.5 ± 1.0 to 11.0 ± 2.5 pg/ml plasma (P<0.05) in elderly volunteers and from 2.0 ± 1.0 to 10.3 ± 3.2 pg/ml plasma (P<0.05) in young volunteers 3 h following food intake. This result suggests that ingestion of food stimulates BK release from kininogen in normal man. Postprandial splanchnic vasodilatation, demonstrated by a decrease of plasma half-life of intravenously administered indocyanine green (ICG), a marker of mesenteric blood flow to the liver, from 4.4 ± 0.4 to 3.0 ± 0.1 min (P<0.05) in young volunteers and from 5.2 ± 1.0 to 4.0 ± 0.5 min (P<0.05) in elderly volunteers, accompanied BK release. The participation of BK in this response was investigated in subjects given the BK-potentiating drug captopril prior to food intake. Postprandial decreases of ICG half-lives were not changed by this treatment in either young or elderly subjects, a result which may indicate that BK released following food intake plays no role in postprandial splanchnic vasodilatation in normal man.
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