Summary Embryological studies in fish species are useful to the understanding of their biology and systematics. The available biological data in Leiarius marmoratus are scarce and additional information about its reproductive biology is needed, mainly because this species has been commercially exploited and used in production of hybrid lineages. In order to evaluate the temporal-morphological embryonic modifications in L. marmoratus, samples of nearly 200 embryos were collected at random at different stages of development, starting from fecundation (time zero). Embryos were fixed in modified Karnovsk's solution and 2.5% glutaraldehyde, processed and analysed under optic and electron microscopy. The incubation period of L. marmoratus was equal to 14.42 h at a mean temperature of 28.3 ± 0.07°C. The following stages of embryonic development were established: zygote, cleavage, gastrula, organogenesis and hatching. These stages were divided into phases, as follows: cleavage - phases of 2, 4, 8, 16, 32 and 64 cells and morula; gastrula - phases of 25, 50, 75 and 90% of epiboly and blastopore closure; and organogenesis - neurula, segmentation and pre-larval phases. The embryogenesis of L. marmoratus was typical of neotropical teleosteans, with peculiarities in species development.
Elderly individuals undergo a progressive decline in functional capacity related to increased risk of dependency, loss of autonomy, and frailty. A lower cardiorespiratory fitness level is associated with cardiovascular disease events and mortality from all causes. The Veterans Specific Activity Questionnaire (VSAQ) was developed to facilitate prediction of the exercise capacity in older people with cardiovascular disease. However, few studies have investigated the relationship between the VSAQ and functional capacity in elderly women. This study investigated the relationship between functional capacity and the estimated cardiovascular capacity in elderly women, as assessed by the VSAQ. In this descriptive, observational, cross-sectional study, we evaluated 37 healthy elderly women (aged 70 ± 7 years). The assessment protocols used were the following: Anamnesis, VSAQ and nomogram (age adjusted), Senior Fitness Test (30-s chair stand, to assess lower-body strength; 8-foot up-and-go test, to assess agility-dynamic balance; and 2-min step test, to assess aerobic endurance). The Spearman test showed a significant correlation (p<0.001) between the functional tests and the VSAQ (8-foot up-and-go test rs=-0.715; 2-min step test rs=0.567; 30-s chair stand rs=0.582). Adjustment of the results by age improved the correlation (8-foot up-and-go test rs=-0.760; 2-min step test rs=0.627; 30-s chair stand rs=0.601). The VSAQ seems to be a simple way to estimate functional capacity, particularly in older women.
Drug-induced behavioral sensitization (BS), paradoxical sleep deprivation (PSD) and adolescence in rodents are associated with changes in the mesolimbic dopaminergic system. We compared the effects of PSD on amphetamine-induced BS in adult and adolescent mice. Adult (90 days old) and adolescent (45 days old) Swiss mice were subjected to PSD for 48h. Immediately after PSD, mice received saline or 2.0mg/kg amphetamine intraperitoneally (i.p.), and their locomotion was quantified in activity chambers. Seven days later, all the animals were challenged with 2.0mg/kg amphetamine i.p., and their locomotion was quantified again. Acute amphetamine enhanced locomotion in both adult and adolescent mice, but BS was observed only in adolescent mice. Immediately after its termination, PSD decreased locomotion of both saline- and amphetamine-treated adolescent mice. Seven days later, previous PSD potentiated both the acute stimulatory effect of amphetamine and its sensitization in adolescent mice. In adult animals, previous PSD revealed BS. Our data suggest that adolescent mice are more vulnerable to both the immediate and long-term effects of PSD on amphetamine-induced locomotion. Because drug-induced BS in rodents shares neuroplastic changes with drug craving in humans, our findings also suggest that both adolescence and PSD could facilitate craving-related mechanisms in amphetamine abuse.
Diacylglycerol-O-acyltransferase (DGAT1) gene encodes the rate-limiting enzyme of triglyceride synthesis. A polymorphism in this gene, DGAT1 K232A, has been associated with milk production and composition in taurine breeds. However, this polymorphism is not a good tool for ascertaining the effects of this QTL in Bos indicus (Zebu), since the frequency of the DGAT1 232A allele is too low in these breeds. We sequenced the 3'-untranslated region of DGAT1 gene in a sample of bulls of the breeds Guzerá (Bos indicus) and Holstein (Bos taurus) and, using in silico analysis, we searched for genetic variation, evolutionary conservation, regulatory elements, and possible substitution effects. Six single nucleotide (SNPs) and one insertion-deletion (INDEL) polymorphisms were found in the Guzerá bulls. Additionally, we developed a preliminary association study, using this INDEL polymorphism as a genetic marker. A significant association was detected (P ? 0.05) between the INDEL (DGAT1 3'UTR INDEL) and the breeding values (BV) for protein, fat, and milk yields over a 305-day lactation period. The DGAT1 3' UTR INDEL genotype I/I (I, for insertion) was associated with lower BVs (-38.77 kg for milk, -1.86 kg for fat, and -1.48 kg for protein yields), when compared to the genotype I/D (D, for deletion). I/D genotype was lower D/D genotype (-34.98 kg milk, -1.73 kg fat, and -1.09 kg protein yields). This study reports the first polymorphism of DGAT1 3'UTR in the Guzerá breed, as well as its association with BV for milk protein, fat, and milk yields.
An increased function in the mesolimbic dopaminergic system has been extensively associated with the rewarding effects of both natural stimuli and drugs of abuse. Thus, dopamine receptor blockers, such as neuroleptic drugs, can be proposed as candidates for potential therapeutic approaches to treat drug dependence. Notwithstanding, this therapeutic potential of neuroleptics critically depends on a selective action on the specific mechanisms related to the development of addiction. We compared the effects of different doses of haloperidol, ziprasidone and aripiprazole (first-, second- and third-generation neuroleptics, respectively) on spontaneous locomotor activity of mice in a novel environment, hyperlocomotion induced by acute cocaine administration and cocaine-induced locomotor sensitization by a two-injection protocol. Whereas high doses of haloperidol abolished the three behavioural paradigms without selectivity, low doses of ziprasidone selectively abolished the development of the behavioural sensitization phenomenon. Finally, low doses of aripiprazole inhibited acute cocaine-induced hyperlocomotion and behavioural sensitization without modifying spontaneous locomotor activity. Thus, aripiprazole at lower doses was the most selective antipsychotic drug concerning the inhibition of the development of behavioural sensitization to cocaine. Because locomotor sensitization in rodents has been proposed to share plastic mechanisms with drug addiction in humans, our data provide relevant suggestions to the clinical practice.
It has been demonstrated that a prolonged period (48h) of paradoxical sleep deprivation (PSD) potentiates amphetamine (AMP)-induced behavioral sensitization, an animal model of addiction-related neuroadaptations. In the present study, we examined the effects of an acute short-term deprivation of total sleep (TSD) (6h) on AMP-induced behavioral sensitization in mice and compared them to the effects of short-term PSD (6h). Three-month-old male C57BL/6J mice underwent TSD (experiment 1-gentle handling method) or PSD (experiment 2-multiple platforms method) for 6h. Immediately after the sleep deprivation period, mice were tested in the open field for 10min under the effects of saline or 2.0mg/kg AMP. Seven days later, to assess behavioral sensitization, all of the mice received a challenge injection of 2.0mg/kg AMP and were tested in the open field for 10min. Total, peripheral, and central locomotion, and grooming duration were measured. TSD, but not PSD, potentiated the hyperlocomotion induced by an acute injection of AMP and this effect was due to an increased locomotion in the central squares of the apparatus. Similarly, TSD facilitated the development of AMP-induced sensitization, but only in the central locomotion parameter. The data indicate that an acute period of TSD may exacerbate the behavioral effects of AMP in mice. Because sleep architecture is composed of paradoxical and slow wave sleep, and 6-h PSD had no effects on AMP-induced hyperlocomotion or sensitization, our data suggest that the deprivation of slow wave sleep plays a critical role in the mechanisms that underlie the potentiating effects of TSD on both the acute and sensitized addiction-related responses to AMP.
We investigated whether the effect of neonatal hypoxia on amphetamine-induced hyperlocomotion can reproduce the ontogenic (age of onset) properties of schizophrenia. Neonatal hypoxia enhanced amphetamine-induced hyperlocomotion in adult mice and decreased it in adolescent mice. These findings provide ontogenic validity for this very simple animal model of schizophrenia.
Sleep deprivation is a growing public health hazard, yet it is still under-recognized. Sleep disorders and disruption of sleep patterns may compromise the immune function and adversely affect host resistance to infectious diseases. This is a particular risk in cancer patients, who report a high frequency of sleep disturbances. The present study investigated the effects of sleep deprivation on the development of Ehrlich ascitic tumors (EAT) in female BALB/c mice. Our study also evaluated whether EAT would induce alterations in sleep pattern. Spleen lymphocyte cell populations and mortality were also quantified.
The liquid product obtained via the biomass flash pyrolysis is commonly called bio-oil or pyrolysis oil. Bio-oils can be used as sources for chemicals or as fuels, primarily in mixtures or emulsions with fossil fuels. A detailed chemical characterization of bio-oil is necessary to determine its potential uses. Such characterization demands a powerful analytical technique such as comprehensive two-dimensional gas chromatography coupled with time-of-flight mass spectrometry (GC×GC-TOFMS). Limited chemical information can be obtained from conventional gas chromatography coupled mass spectrometry (GC-MS) because of the large number of compounds and coelutions. Thus, GC×GC-TOFMS was used for the individual identification of bio-oil components from two samples prepared via the flash pyrolysis of empty palm fruit bunch and pine wood chips. To the best of our knowledge, few papers have reported comprehensive two-dimensional gas chromatography (GC×GC) for bio-oil analysis. Many classes of compounds such as phenols, benzenediols, cyclopentenones, furanones, indanones and alkylpyridines were identified. Several coelutions present in the GC-MS were resolved using GC×GC-TOFMS. Many peaks were detected for the samples by GC-MS (~166 and 129), but 631 and 857 were detected by GC×GC-TOFMS, respectively. The GC×GC-TOFMS analyses indicated that the major classes of components (analytes>0.5% relative area) in the two bio-oil samples are ketones, cyclopentenones, furanones, furans, phenols, benzenediols, methoxy- and dimethoxy-phenols and sugars. In addition, esters, aldehydes and pyridines were found for sample obtained from empty palm fruit bunch, while alcohols and cyclopentanediones were found in sample prepared from pine wood chips indicating different composition profiles due to the biomass sources. The elucidation of the composition of empty fruit bunch and pine wood chips bio-oils indicates that these oils are suitable for the production of value-added chemicals. The high quantity of phenol in the bio-oil of empty palm fruit bunch is of interest because phenol isolated from the bio-oil could provide an alternative to the phenol obtained from petroleum. The anhydrosugars found mainly in the bio-oil sample of pine wood chips can be isolated and fermented to produce ethanol or lipids. GC×GC-TOFMS can be used to increase the knowledge of the chemical composition of bio-oils allowing the improved usage of this attractive renewable energy source in bio-fuels.
Repeated or even a single exposure to drugs of abuse can lead to persistent locomotor sensitization, which is the result of an abundance of neuroplastic changes occurring within the circuitry involved in motivational behavior and is thought to play a key role in certain aspects of drug addiction. There is substantial controversy about the addictive potential of modafinil, a wake-promoting drug used to treat narcolepsy that is increasingly being used as a cognitive enhancer and has been proposed as a pharmacotherapy for cocaine dependence. Male mice were used to investigate the ability of modafinil to induce locomotor sensitization after repeated or single administration in mice. Bidirectional cross-sensitization with cocaine and modafinil-induced conditioned place preference were also evaluated. Both repeated and single exposure to moderate and high doses of modafinil produced a pronounced locomotor sensitization that cross-sensitized in a bidirectional way with cocaine. Remarkably, when cocaine and modafinil were repeatedly administered sequentially, their behavioral sensitization was additive. Supporting these behavioral sensitization data, modafinil produced a pronounced conditioned place preference in the mouse. Taken together, the present findings provide pre-clinical evidence for the addictive potential of modafinil. Our data also strongly suggest that similar neural substrates are involved in the psychomotor/rewarding effects of modafinil and cocaine.
Behavioral sensitization in rodents is hypothesized to reflect neuronal adaptations that are related to drug addiction in humans. We evaluated the effects of group exposure on the acute hyperlocomotion and behavioral sensitization induced by four drugs of abuse in C57BL/6 mice: methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA), d-amphetamine, morphine and ethanol.
We report a case of Q fever in a man who presented with fever of 40 days duration associated with thrombocytosis. Serological and molecular analysis (polymerase chain reaction) confirmed infection with Coxiella burnetii. A field study was conducted by collecting blood samples from the patients family and from the animals in the patients house. The patients wife and 2 of 13 dogs showed seroreactivity. Our data indicate that C. burnetii may be an underrecognized cause of fever in Brazil and emphasize the need for clinicians to consider Q fever in patients with a febrile illness, particularly those with a history of animal contact.
The increase of incidence of tuberculosis (TB) with resistant strains and HIV co-infection has reinforced the necessity of developing new drugs for its treatment. The reaction of naphthoquinones with aromatic or aliphatic aldehydes in the presence of ammonium acetate led to the synthesis of the three ?-lapachone derivatives (naphthoimidazoles) that were tested in this study. Phenazines were prepared by the reaction of the respective naphtoquinone with o-phenylenediamine in acetic acid under reflux. The antimicrobial activity of the derivatives was evaluated in vitro against Mycobacterium tuberculosis H37Rv (ATCC 27294) and the rifampicin-resistant strain (ATCC 35338) containing a His-526-Tir mutation in the rpoB gene. Using the Resazurin Microtiter Assay (REMA) method, bioactive molecules were observed in the susceptible and resistant strains with MICs ranging from 2.2 ?M to 17 ?M. The naphthoimidazoles with p-toluyl and indolyl group attached to the imidazole ring were more active against the H37Rv strain (MIC 9.12 ?M and 4.2 ?M, respectively) than the rifampicin-resistant strain (MIC 8.3 ?M and 17 ?M, respectively). The phenazine with the allyl-pyran group was most active among the two strains and had an MIC of 2.2 mM. These results show the potential of these molecules as prototypes for future drugs used in treating TB.
A large number of travelers visit the African continent annually for studying, tourism or business reasons. The authors report a case of cervical adenomegaly, hepatomegaly and splenomegaly associated with a two-week history of fever and seropositivity for Bartonella sp in a 22-year-old female patient who returned from South Africa after field work with primates in a wild area.
In order to elucidate the effect on mammal systems of new derivatives from 2-hydroxy-3-allyl-naphthoquinone, alpha-iodinated naphthofuranquinone (NPPN-3223), beta-iodinated naphthofuranquinone (NPPN-3222) and beta-methyl naphthofuranquinone (NPPN-3226) synthesized as possible trypanocidal agents, their effect on rat liver microsomal lipid peroxidation was investigated. They (a) inhibited NADPH-dependent, iron-catalyzed microsomal rat liver lipid peroxidation; (b) did not inhibit the tert-butyl hydroperoxide-dependent lipid peroxidation; (c) did not inhibit ascorbate-lipid peroxidation with the exception of NPPN-3226 which did inhibit it; (d) stimulated NADPH oxidation and microsomal oxygen uptake; (e) increased superoxide anion formation by NADPH-supplemented microsomes and (f) stimulated ascorbate oxidation. The three drugs were reduced to their seminaphthofuranquinone radical by the liver NADPH-P450 reductase system, as detected by ESR measurements. These results support the hypothesis that naphthofuranquinones reduction by microsomal NADPH-P450 reductase and semiquinone oxidation by molecular oxygen diverts electrons, preventing microsomal lipid peroxidation. In addition, hydroquinones and/or semiquinones formed by naphthofuranquinones reduction would be capable of lipid peroxidation inhibition and on interacting with the lipid peroxide radicals can lead to an antioxidant effect as we suggested for NPPN-3226 in close agreement to the inhibition of ascorbate-lipid peroxidation. Due to the properties of these molecules and their incoming structure developments, naphthofuranquinones would be considered as potentially promising therapeutic agents, mainly against Chagas disease.
Fire is an important agent of disturbance in tropical savannas, but relatively few studies have analyzed how soil-and-litter dwelling arthropods respond to fire disturbance despite the critical role these organisms play in nutrient cycling and other biogeochemical processes. Following the incursion of a fire into a woodland savanna ecological reserve in Central Brazil, we monitored the dynamics of litter-arthropod populations for nearly two years in one burned and one unburned area of the reserve. We also performed a reciprocal transplant experiment to determine the effects of fire and litter type on the dynamics of litter colonization by arthropods. Overall arthropod abundance, the abundance of individual taxa, the richness of taxonomic groups, and the species richness of individual taxa (Formiciade) were lower in the burned site. However, both the ordinal-level composition of the litter arthropod fauna and the species-level composition of the litter ant fauna were not dramatically different in the burned and unburned sites. There is evidence that seasonality of rainfall interacts with fire, as differences in arthropod abundance and diversity were more pronounced in the dry than in the wet season. For many taxa the differences in abundance between burned and unburned sites were maintained even when controlling for litter availability and quality. In contrast, differences in abundance for Collembola, Formicidae, and Thysanoptera were only detected in the unmanipulated samples, which had a lower amount of litter in the burned than in the unburned site throughout most of our study period. Together these results suggest that arthropod density declines in fire-disturbed areas as a result of direct mortality, diminished resources (i.e., reduced litter cover) and less favorable microclimate (i.e., increased litter desiccation due to reduction in tree cover). Although these effects were transitory, there is evidence that the increasingly prevalent fire return interval of only 1-2 years may jeopardize the long-term conservation of litter arthropod communities.
Both spontaneous and drug-induced animal behaviors can be modified by exposure to novel stimuli or different levels of environmental illumination. However, research into how these factors specifically impact ethanol (ETH)-induced behavioral effects is currently lacking. We aimed to investigate the effects of these two factors, considered separately or in conjunction, on ETH-induced acute hyperlocomotor effect and its sensitization in adult male Swiss mice. Mice were placed in a novel or familiar open-field under normal light (200 lx) or low light (9 lx) immediately after receiving an ip injection of either 1.8 g/kg ETH or saline (SAL). After 7 days, all animals received an ip challenge injection of 1.8 g/kg ETH, and were placed in the open-field under the same light conditions described above. Novelty increased central locomotion and decreased grooming, while low light increased grooming. Acute ETH administration increased both total and peripheral locomotion and these effects were potentiated by low light. Both low light and novelty were able to facilitate ETH-induced locomotor sensitization, which was detected by the central locomotion parameter. However, there was no synergism between the effects of these two modulating factors on ETH-induced behavioral sensitization. We conclude that both the acute behavioral effects of ETH and behavioral sensitization induced by previous administration of this drug can be critically modified by environmental factors. In addition, our study stresses the importance of using different behavioral parameters to evaluate the interaction between environmental factors and ETH effects.
We report here an alternative to the MCPBA or ozonolysis-based oxidation methods of quinoxaline-featuring compounds prepared from beta-lapachones. The use of peracetic acid allowed a simple preparation of the corresponding macrolactones by cleavage of the ring system. These lactones were evaluated for their antimycobacterial potential and compound 4 turned out to have an MIC of 0.62 microg per mL on Mycocabteriumtuberculosis H37Rv. These results justify further research into its value as a potential lead for an original treatment of tuberculosis.
The purpose of this study was to evaluate the action of sodium hypochlorite (NaOCl) associated with an intracanal medication against Candida albicans and Enterococcus faecalis inoculated in root canals.
Despite ongoing efforts, the current treatment for Chagas disease is still unsatisfactory, mainly because of the severe side effects and variable efficacy of the available nitroheterocycles. Our group has been assaying natural quinones isolated from Brazilian flora, and their derivatives, as alternative chemotherapeutic agents against Trypanosoma cruzi. From C-allyl lawsone three naphthofuranquinones were synthesized, which were active against trypomastigotes and epimastigotes. Here, we further investigated the activity and the mechanisms of action of these quinones. They exhibited powerful effects on intracellular amastigotes, presenting low toxicity to the host cells. Ultrastructural analyses of treated epimastigotes and trypomastigotes indicated a potent effect of the three naphthofuranquinones on the parasite mitochondrion, which appeared drastically swollen and with a washed-out matrix profile. Fluorescence-activated cell sorting analysis of rhodamine 123-stained T. cruzi showed that the three naphthofuranquinones caused a potent dose-dependent collapse of the mitochondrial membrane potential, especially in the epimastigote form. Naphthofuranquinones also decreased specifically mitochondrial complex I-III activity in both epimastigotes and trypomastigotes, parallel to a reduction in succinate-induced oxygen consumption. Mitochondrial hydrogen peroxide formation was also increased in epimastigotes after treatment with the naphthofuranquinones. Our results indicate that the trypanocidal action of the naphthofuranquinones is associated with mitochondrial dysfunction, leading to increased reactive oxygen species generation and parasite death.
Oral tolerance is defined as an inhibition of specific immune responsiveness to a previously ingested antigen. Paradoxically, we found an increased lymphocyte activity in tolerant mice alongside the specific inhibition. Orally-tolerant mice presented higher number of immunoglobulin secreting cells (ISC) in spleen and bone marrow; showed a greater variety of Ig classes being produced: IgM and IgA in the spleen and IgG and IgM in the bone marrow. ISC from immunized mice produced mainly IgG. Despite having the same number of regulatory and activated T cells in the spleen after immunization, these cells appeared earlier in tolerant mice, right after the primary immunization. Also, tolerant mice showed a prompt expression of regulatory cytokines (TGF-? and IL-10) and a transient expression of effector cytokines (IL-2 and IFN-?). Thus, in addition to an inhibited specific responsiveness, orally-tolerant mice displayed an early and widespread mobilization of activated and regulatory lymphocytes.
Modafinil (MOD), a psychostimulant used to treat narcolepsy, excessive daytime sleepiness, and sleepiness due to obstructive sleep apnea, appears to promote a possible facilitatory effect on cognitive function. In the present study, we investigated the effects of the acute administration of MOD on the different steps of emotional memory formation and usage (acquisition, consolidation and retrieval) as well as the possible participation of the state-dependency phenomenon on the cognitive effects of this compound. Mice were acutely treated with 32, 64 or 128 mg/kg MOD before training or testing or immediately after training and were subjected to the plus-maze discriminative avoidance task. The results showed that although pre-training MOD administration did not exert any effects on learning, the doses of 32 or 64 mg/kg induced emotional memory deficits during testing. Still, the post-training acute administration of the higher doses of MOD (64 and 128 mg/kg) impaired associative memory consolidation. When the drug was administered pre-test, only the 32 mg/kg dose impaired the task retrieval. Importantly, the cognitive impairing effects induced by 32 mg/kg MOD were not related to the phenomenon of state-dependency. In all, our findings provide pre-clinical evidence of potential emotional memory amnesia induced by MOD. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled Cognitive Enhancers.
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