Brazilian Journal of Medical and Biological Research, Volume: 39, Issue: 3, Published: 2006
  • The extracellular matrix provides directional cues for neuronal migration during cerebellar development Review

    Porcionatto, M.A.

    Abstract in English:

    Normal central nervous system development relies on accurate intrinsic cellular programs as well as on extrinsic informative cues provided by extracellular molecules. Migration of neuronal progenitors from defined proliferative zones to their final location is a key event during embryonic and postnatal development. Extracellular matrix components play important roles in these processes, and interactions between neurons and extracellular matrix are fundamental for the normal development of the central nervous system. Guidance cues are provided by extracellular factors that orient neuronal migration. During cerebellar development, the extracellular matrix molecules laminin and fibronectin give support to neuronal precursor migration, while other molecules such as reelin, tenascin, and netrin orient their migration. Reelin and tenascin are extracellular matrix components that attract or repel neuronal precursors and axons during development through interaction with membrane receptors, and netrin associates with laminin and heparan sulfate proteoglycans, and binds to the extracellular matrix receptor integrins present on the neuronal surface. Altogether, the dynamic changes in the composition and distribution of extracellular matrix components provide external cues that direct neurons leaving their birthplaces to reach their correct final location. Understanding the molecular mechanisms that orient neurons to reach precisely their final location during development is fundamental to understand how neuronal misplacement leads to neurological diseases and eventually to find ways to treat them.
  • Frequency of CCR5delta32 in Brazilian populations Biochemistry And Molecular Biology

    Vargas, A.E.; Marrero, A.R.; Salzano, F.M.; Bortolini, M.C.; Chies, J.A.B.

    Abstract in English:

    A sample of 103 randomly chosen healthy individuals from Alegrete, RS, Brazil, was tested for the CCR5delta32 allele, which is known to influence susceptibility to HIV-1 infection. The CCR5delta32 allele was identified by PCR amplification using specific primers flanking the region of deletion, followed by electrophoresis on a 3% agarose gel. The data obtained were compared to those reported for other populations and interpreted in terms of Brazilian history. The individuals studied came from a highly admixed population. Most of them were identified as white (N = 59), while blacks and browns (mulattoes) were N = 13 and N = 31, respectively. The observed frequencies, considering the white, black and brown samples (6.8, 3.8, and 6.4%, respectively), suggest an important European parental contribution, even in populations identified as black and brown. However, in Brazil as a whole, this allele shows gradients indicating a relatively good correlation with the classification based on skin color and other physical traits, used here to define major Brazilian population groups.
  • Fludarabine induces apoptosis in chronic lymphocytic leukemia - the role of P53, Bcl-2, Bax, Mcl-1, and Bag-1 proteins Cell Biology

    Faria, J.R.; Yamamoto, M.; Faria, R.M.D.; Kerbauy, J.; Oliveira, J.S.R.

    Abstract in English:

    The expression of P53, Bcl-2, Bax, Bag-1, and Mcl-1 proteins in CD5/CD20-positive B-chronic lymphocytic leukemia (B-CLL) cells from 30 typical CLL patients was evaluated before and after 48 h of incubation with 10-6 M fludarabine using multiparametric flow cytometric analysis. Protein expression was correlated with annexin V expression, Rai modified clinical staging, lymphocyte doubling time, and previous treatment. Our main goal was to determine the predictive value of these proteins in CLL cells in terms of disease evolution. Bcl-2 expression decreased from a median fluorescence index (MFI) of 331.71 ± 42.2 to 245.81 ± 52.2 (P < 0.001) after fludarabine treatment, but there was no difference between viable cells (331.57 ± 44.6 MFI) and apoptotic cells (331.71 ± 42.2 MFI) before incubation (P = 0.859). Bax expression was higher in viable cells (156.24 ± 32.2 MFI) than in apoptotic cells (133.56 ± 35.7 MFI) before incubation, probably reflecting defective apoptosis in CLL (P = 0.001). Mcl-1 expression was increased in fludarabine-resistant cells and seemed to be a remarkable protein for the inhibition of the apoptotic process in CLL (from 233.59 ± 29.8 to 252.04 ± 35.5; P = 0.033). After fludarabine treatment, Bag-1 expression was increased in fludarabine-resistant cells (from 425.55 ± 39.3 to 447.49 ± 34.5 MFI, P = 0.012), and interestingly, this higher expression occurred in patients who had a short lymphocyte doubling time (P = 0.022). Therefore, we could assume that Bag-1 expression in such situation might identify CLL patients who will need treatment earlier.
  • Dexamethasone-induced reactivation of bovine herpesvirus type 5 latent infection in experimentally infected rabbits results in a broader distribution of latent viral DNA in the brain Experimental Biology

    Mayer, S.V.; de Quadros, V.L.; Vogel, F.S.F.; Winkelmann, E.R.; Arenhart, S.; Weiblen, R.; Flores, E.F.

    Abstract in English:

    Bovine herpesvirus type 5 (BHV-5) is a major agent of meningoencephalitis in cattle and establishes latent infections mainly in sensory nerve ganglia. The distribution of latent BHV-5 DNA in the brain of rabbits prior to and after virus reactivation was studied using a nested PCR. Fifteen rabbits inoculated intranasally with BHV-5 were euthanized 60 days post-inoculation (group A, N = 8) or submitted to dexamethasone treatment (2.6 mg kg-1 day-1, im, for 5 days) and euthanized 60 days later (group B, N = 7) for tissue examination. Two groups of BHV-1-infected rabbits (C, N = 3 and D, N = 3) submitted to each treatment were used as controls. Viral DNA of group A rabbits was consistently detected in trigeminal ganglia (8/8), frequently in cerebellum (5/8), anterior cerebral cortex and pons-medulla (3/8) and occasionally in dorsolateral (2/8), ventrolateral and posterior cerebral cortices, midbrain and thalamus (1/8). Viral DNA of group B rabbits showed a broader distribution, being detected at higher frequency in ventrolateral (6/7) and posterior cerebral cortices (5/7), pons-medulla (6/7), thalamus (4/7), and midbrain (3/7). In contrast, rabbits inoculated with BHV-1 harbored viral DNA almost completely restricted to trigeminal ganglia and the distribution did not change post-reactivation. These results demonstrate that latency by BHV-5 is established in several areas of the rabbit's brain and that virus reactivation leads to a broader distribution of latent viral DNA. Spread of virus from trigeminal ganglia and other areas of the brain likely contributes to this dissemination and may contribute to the recrudescence of neurological disease frequently observed upon BHV-5 reactivation.
  • The non-palindromic adaptor-PCR method for the identification of the T-cell receptor genes of an interferon-gamma-secreting T-cell hybridomaspecific for trans-sialidase, an immunodominant Trypanosoma cruzi antigen Immunology

    Hiyane, M.I.; Boscardin, S.B.; Rodrigues, M.M.

    Abstract in English:

    Cloning of the T-cell receptor genes is a critical step when generating T-cell receptor transgenic mice. Because T-cell receptor molecules are clonotypical, isolation of their genes requires reverse transcriptase-assisted PCR using primers specific for each different Valpha or Vß genes or by the screening of cDNA libraries generated from RNA obtained from each individual T-cell clone. Although feasible, these approaches are laborious and costly. The aim of the present study was to test the application of the non-palindromic adaptor-PCR method as an alternative to isolate the genes encoding the T-cell receptor of an antigen-specific T-cell hybridoma. For this purpose, we established hybridomas specific for trans-sialidase, an immunodominant Trypanosoma cruzi antigen. These T-cell hybridomas were characterized with regard to their ability to secrete interferon-gamma, IL-4, and IL-10 after stimulation with the antigen. A CD3+, CD4+, CD8- interferon-gamma-producing hybridoma was selected for the identification of the variable regions of the T-cell receptor by the non-palindromic adaptor-PCR method. Using this methodology, we were able to rapidly and efficiently determine the variable regions of both T-cell receptor chains. The results obtained by the non-palindromic adaptor-PCR method were confirmed by the isolation and sequencing of the complete cDNA genes and by the recognition with a specific antibody against the T-cell receptor variable ß chain. We conclude that the non-palindromic adaptor-PCR method can be a valuable tool for the identification of the T-cell receptor transcripts of T-cell hybridomas and may facilitate the generation of T-cell receptor transgenic mice.
  • Glutathione and the redox control system trypanothione/trypanothione reductase are involved in the protection of Leishmania spp. against nitrosothiol-induced cytotoxicity Immunology

    Romão, P.R.T.; Tovar, J.; Fonseca, S.G.; Moraes, R.H.; Cruz, A.K.; Hothersall, J.S.; Noronha-Dutra, A.A.; Ferreira, S.H.; Cunha, F.Q.

    Abstract in English:

    Glutathione is the major intracellular antioxidant thiol protecting mammalian cells against oxidative stress induced by oxygen- and nitrogen-derived reactive species. In trypanosomes and leishmanias, trypanothione plays a central role in parasite protection against mammalian host defence systems by recycling trypanothione disulphide by the enzyme trypanothione reductase. Although Kinetoplastida parasites lack glutathione reductase, they maintain significant levels of glutathione. The aim of this study was to use Leishmania donovani trypanothione reductase gene mutant clones and different Leishmania species to examine the role of these two individual thiol systems in the protection mechanism against S-nitroso-N-acetyl-D,L-penicillamine (SNAP), a nitrogen-derived reactive species donor. We found that the resistance to SNAP of different species of Leishmania was inversely correlated with their glutathione concentration but not with their total low-molecular weight thiol content (about 0.18 nmol/10(7) parasites, regardless Leishmania species). The glutathione concentration in L. amazonensis, L. donovani, L. major, and L. braziliensis were 0.12, 0.10, 0.08, and 0.04 nmol/10(7) parasites, respectively. L. amazonensis, that have a higher level of glutathione, were less susceptible to SNAP (30 and 100 µM). The IC50 values of SNAP determined to L. amazonensis, L. donovani, L. major, and L. braziliensis were 207.8, 188.5, 160.9, and 83 µM, respectively. We also observed that L. donovani mutants carrying only one trypanothione reductase allele had a decreased capacity to survive (~40%) in the presence of SNAP (30-150 µM). In conclusion, the present data suggest that both antioxidant systems, glutathione and trypanothione/trypanothione reductase, participate in protection of Leishmania against the toxic effect of nitrogen-derived reactive species.
  • Prazosin blocks the glutamatergic effects of N-methyl-D-aspartic acid on lordosis behavior and luteinizing hormone secretion in the estrogen-primed female rat Neurosciences And Behavior

    Landa, A.I.; Cabrera, R.J.; Gargiulo, P.A.

    Abstract in English:

    We have observed that intracerebroventricular (icv) injection of selective N-methyl-D-aspartic acid (NMDA)-type glutamatergic receptor antagonists inhibits lordosis in ovariectomized (OVX), estrogen-primed rats receiving progesterone or luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone (LHRH). When NMDA was injected into OVX estrogen-primed rats, it induced a significant increase in lordosis. The interaction between LHRH and glutamate was previously explored by us and another groups. The noradrenergic systems have a functional role in the regulation of LHRH release. The purpose of the present study was to explore the interaction between glutamatergic and noradrenergic transmission. The action of prazosin, an alpha1- and alpha2b-noradrenergic antagonist, was studied here by injecting it icv (1.75 and 3.5 µg/6 µL) prior to NMDA administration (1 µg/2 µL) in OVX estrogen-primed Sprague-Dawley rats (240-270 g). Rats manually restrained were injected over a period of 2 min, and tested 1.5 h later. The enhancing effect induced by NMDA on the lordosis/mount ratio at high doses (67.06 ± 3.28, N = 28) when compared to saline controls (6 and 2 µL, 16.59 ± 3.20, N = 27) was abolished by prazosin administration (17.04 ± 5.52, N = 17, and 9.33 ± 3.21, N = 20, P < 0.001 for both doses). Plasma LH levels decreased significantly only with the higher dose of prazosin (1.99 ± 0.24 ng/mL, N = 18, compared to saline-NMDA effect, 5.96 ± 2.01 ng/mL, N = 13, P < 0.05). Behavioral effects seem to be more sensitive to the alpha-blockade than hormonal effects. These findings strongly suggest that the facilitatory effects of NMDA on both lordosis and LH secretion in this model are mediated by alpha-noradrenergic transmission.
  • Errors in nonword repetition: bridging short- and long-term memory Neurosciences And Behavior

    Santos, F.H.; Bueno, O.F.A.; Gathercole, S.E.

    Abstract in English:

    According to the working memory model, the phonological loop is the component of working memory specialized in processing and manipulating limited amounts of speech-based information. The Children's Test of Nonword Repetition (CNRep) is a suitable measure of phonological short-term memory for English-speaking children, which was validated by the Brazilian Children's Test of Pseudoword Repetition (BCPR) as a Portuguese-language version. The objectives of the present study were: i) to investigate developmental aspects of the phonological memory processing by error analysis in the nonword repetition task, and ii) to examine phoneme (substitution, omission and addition) and order (migration) errors made in the BCPR by 180 normal Brazilian children of both sexes aged 4-10, from preschool to 4th grade. The dominant error was substitution [F(3,525) = 180.47; P < 0.0001]. The performance was age-related [F(4,175) = 14.53; P < 0.0001]. The length effect, i.e., more errors in long than in short items, was observed [F(3,519) = 108.36; P < 0.0001]. In 5-syllable pseudowords, errors occurred mainly in the middle of the stimuli, before the syllabic stress [F(4,16) = 6.03; P = 0.003]; substitutions appeared more at the end of the stimuli, after the stress [F(12,48) = 2.27; P = 0.02]. In conclusion, the BCPR error analysis supports the idea that phonological loop capacity is relatively constant during development, although school learning increases the efficiency of this system. Moreover, there are indications that long-term memory contributes to holding memory trace. The findings were discussed in terms of distinctiveness, clustering and redintegration hypotheses.
  • Antibacterial activity of indole alkaloids from Aspidosperma ramiflorum Pharmacology

    Tanaka, J.C.A.; Silva, C.C. da; Oliveira, A.J.B. de; Nakamura, C.V.; Dias Filho, B.P.

    Abstract in English:

    We evaluated the antibacterial activities of the crude methanol extract, fractions (I-V) obtained after acid-base extraction and pure compounds from the stem bark of Aspidosperma ramiflorum. The minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) was determined by the microdilution technique in Mueller-Hinton broth. Inoculates were prepared in this medium from 24-h broth cultures of bacteria (10(7) CFU/mL). Microtiter plates were incubated at 37ºC and the MICs were recorded after 24 h of incubation. Two susceptibility endpoints were recorded for each isolate. The crude methanol extract presented moderate activity against the Gram-positive bacteria B. subtilis (MIC = 250 µg/mL) and S. aureus (MIC = 500 µg/mL), and was inactive against the Gram-negative bacteria E. coli and P. aeruginosa (MIC > 1000 µg/mL). Fractions I and II were inactive against standard strains at concentrations of <=1000 µg/mL and fraction III displayed moderate antibacterial activity against B. subtilis (MIC = 500 µg/mL) and S. aureus (MIC = 250 µg/mL). Fraction IV showed high activity against B. subtilis and S. aureus (MIC = 15.6 µg/mL) and moderate activity against E. coli and P. aeruginosa (MIC = 250 µg/mL). Fraction V presented high activity against B. subtilis (MIC = 15.6 µg/mL) and S. aureus (MIC = 31.3 µg/mL) and was inactive against Gram-negative bacteria (MIC > 1000 µg/mL). Fractions III, IV and V were then submitted to bioassay-guided fractionation by silica gel column chromatography, yielding individual purified ramiflorines A and B. Both ramiflorines showed significant activity against S. aureus (MIC = 25 µg/mL) and E. faecalis (MIC = 50 µg/mL), with EC50 of 8 and 2.5 µg/mL for ramiflorines A and B, respectively, against S. aureus. These results are promising, showing that these compounds are biologically active against Gram-positive bacteria.
  • Transient outward potassium current and Ca2+ homeostasis in the heart: beyond the action potential Physiology And Biophysics

    Bassani, R.A.

    Abstract in English:

    Normal central nervous system development relies on accurate intrinsic cellular programs as well as on extrinsic informative cues provided by extracellular molecules. Migration of neuronal progenitors from defined proliferative zones to their final location is a key event during embryonic and postnatal development. Extracellular matrix components play important roles in these processes, and interactions between neurons and extracellular matrix are fundamental for the normal development of the central nervous system. Guidance cues are provided by extracellular factors that orient neuronal migration. During cerebellar development, the extracellular matrix molecules laminin and fibronectin give support to neuronal precursor migration, while other molecules such as reelin, tenascin, and netrin orient their migration. Reelin and tenascin are extracellular matrix components that attract or repel neuronal precursors and axons during development through interaction with membrane receptors, and netrin associates with laminin and heparan sulfate proteoglycans, and binds to the extracellular matrix receptor integrins present on the neuronal surface. Altogether, the dynamic changes in the composition and distribution of extracellular matrix components provide external cues that direct neurons leaving their birthplaces to reach their correct final location. Understanding the molecular mechanisms that orient neurons to reach precisely their final location during development is fundamental to understand how neuronal misplacement leads to neurological diseases and eventually to find ways to treat them.
  • Losses of immunoreactive parvalbumin amacrine and immunoreactive alphaprotein kinase C bipolar cells caused by methylmercury chloride intoxication in the retina of the tropical fish Hoplias malabaricus Symposium On Sensory And Neuropsychological Losses Due To Mercury Intoxication And To Other Neurodegenerative Processes. Studies In Humans And In Animal Models

    Bonci, D.M.O.; Lima, S.M.A. de; Grötzner, S.R.; Oliveira Ribeiro, C.A.; Hamassaki, D.E.; Ventura, D.F.

    Abstract in English:

    To quantify the effects of methylmercury (MeHg) on amacrine and on ON-bipolar cells in the retina, experiments were performed in MeHg-exposed groups of adult trahiras (Hoplias malabaricus) at two dose levels (2 and 6 µg/g, ip). The retinas of test and control groups were processed by mouse anti-parvalbumin and rabbit anti-alphaprotein kinase C (alphaPKC) immunocytochemistry. Morphology and soma location in the inner nuclear layer were used to identify immunoreactive parvalbumin (PV-IR) and alphaPKC (alphaPKC-IR) in wholemount preparations. Cell density, topography and isodensity maps were estimated using confocal images. PV-IR was detected in amacrine cells in the inner nuclear layer and in displaced amacrine cells from the ganglion cell layer, and alphaPKC-IR was detected in ON-bipolar cells. The MeHg-treated group (6 µg/g) showed significant reduction of the ON-bipolar alphaPKC-IR cell density (mean density = 1306 ± 393 cells/mm²) compared to control (1886 ± 892 cells/mm²; P < 0.001). The mean densities found for amacrine PV-IR cells in MeHg-treated retinas were 1040 ± 56 cells/mm² (2 µg/g) and 845 ± 82 cells/mm² (6 µg/g), also lower than control (1312 ± 31 cells/mm²; P < 0.05), differently from the data observed in displaced PV-IR amacrine cells. These results show that MeHg changed the PV-IR amacrine cell density in a dose-dependent way, and reduced the density of alphaKC-IR bipolar cells at the dose of 6 µg/g. Further studies are needed to identify the physiological impact of these findings on visual function.
  • Comparative study of human exposure to mercury in riverside communities in the Amazon region Symposium On Sensory And Neuropsychological Losses Due To Mercury Intoxication And To Other Neurodegenerative Processes. Studies In Humans And In Animal Models

    Pinheiro, M.C.N.; Oikawa, T.; Vieira, J.L.F.; Gomes, M.S.V.; Guimarães, G.A.; Crespo-López, M.E.; Müller, R.C.S.; Amoras, W.W.; Ribeiro, D.R.G.; Rodrigues, A.R.; Côrtes, M.I.T.

    Abstract in English:

    Four populations in the Amazon area were selected for a comparative study of mercury-exposed and non-exposed populations: São Luiz do Tapajós, Barreiras, Panacauera, and Pindobal Grande. The highest mercury levels in human hair samples were found in São Luiz do Tapajós and Barreiras, greatly exceeding the limits established by the World Health Organization. Panacauera showed an intermediate level below 9 µg/g. This was the first comparative and simultaneous evaluation of mercury exposure in the Amazon area. Also, thanks to this type of monitoring, we were able to eliminate the uncertainties about the reference dose. On the basis of these data, we can conclude that the mercury levels detected in exposed populations of the Tapajós River basin may be dangerous not only because they are above the World Health Organization limits, but also because the simultaneous mercury detection in non-exposed populations with similar characteristics provided a valid control and revealed lower mercury levels. Our results support the importance of continuous monitoring in both exposed and non-exposed populations.
  • Methylmercury intoxication activates nitric oxide synthase in chick retinal cell culture Symposium On Sensory And Neuropsychological Losses Due To Mercury Intoxication And To Other Neurodegenerative Processes. Studies In Humans And In Animal Models

    Herculano, A.M.; Crespo-López, M.E.; Lima, S.M.A.; Picanço-Diniz, D.L.W.; Nascimento, J.L.M. Do

    Abstract in English:

    The visual system is a potential target for methylmercury (MeHg) intoxication. Nevertheless, there are few studies about the cellular mechanisms of toxicity induced by MeHg in retinal cells. Various reports have indicated a critical role for nitric oxide synthase (NOS) activation in modulating MeHg neurotoxicity in cerebellar and cortical regions. The aim of the present study is to describe the effects of MeHg on cell viability and NOS activation in chick retinal cell cultures. For this purpose, primary cultures were prepared from 7-day-old chick embryos: retinas were aseptically dissected and dissociated and cells were grown at 37ºC for 7-8 days. Cultures were exposed to MeHg (10 µM, 100 µM, and 1 mM) for 2, 4, and 6 h. Cell viability was measured by MTT method and NOS activity by monitoring the conversion of L-[H³]-arginine to L-[H³]-citrulline. The incubation of cultured retina cells with 10 and 100 µM MeHg promoted an increase of NOS activity compared to control (P < 0.05). Maximum values (P < 0.05) were reached after 4 h of MeHg incubation: increases of 81.6 ± 5.3 and 91.3 ± 3.7%, respectively (data are reported as mean ± SEM for 4 replicates). MeHg also promoted a concentration- and time-dependent decrease in cell viability, with the highest toxicity (a reduction of about 80% in cell viability) being observed at the concentration of 1 mM and after 4-6 h of incubation. The present study demonstrates for the first time the modulation of MeHg neurotoxicity in retinal cells by the nitrergic system.
  • Correction Correction

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