Authors:A. Pacheco, M. Freitas, M. Baptista, M. Vasconcelos, and J. Cabral
This study deals with the influence of the exposure conditions on biological uptake, by looking into concentrations of Ni
and V in lichen thalli and tree bark after continuous and discontinuous field trials at littoral sites impacted by anthropogenic
emissions. Biomonitors were assessed by k0-INAA and AAS. Correlations at Sines are more apparent than at Viana or Lisboa. When data from all sites are pooled, V shows
correlations for practically every situation while Ni shows none, which may indicate a dissimilar uptake mechanism for each
element. At Sines, V/Ni ratios reach values that comply with emissions from oil-related industries.
Authors:J. A. Baptista, P. J. Spencer, J. E. Oliveira, M. S. Casare, and N. Nascimento
In the present work, we investigated the immunological behavior of bothropstoxin-1, a K49 phospholipase from Bothrops jararacussu, and of ovalbumin before and after irradiation with 60Co g-rays. Isogenic mice were immunized with either native or irradiated proteins. The circulating antibodies were isotyped
and titrated by ELISA. Results indicate that irradiated proteins were immunogenic and the antibodies elicited by them were
able to recognize the native proteins in ELISA. Data also indicate that the irradiated protein induced higher titers of IgG2a
and IgG2b, suggesting that Th1 cells were predominantly involved in the immune response. Structural modifications of the proteins
were investigated by SDS-PAGE, mass spectrometry and size exclusion chromatography. According to our data, irradiation promoted
structural modifications on both proteins, characterized by higher molecular weight forms (aggregates and oligomers). When
analyzed by mass spectrometry, the irradiated bothropstoxin appeared in several oxidized forms. These results indicate that
irradiation of toxic proteins can promote significant modifications in their structures, but still retain many of the original
antigenic and immunological properties of native form.
Authors:M. Freitas, A. Pacheco, I. Dionísio, S. Sarmento, M. Baptista, M. Vasconcelos, and J. Cabral
In a biomonitoring study aiming to find alternatives to lower epiphytes as air-quality monitors, lichens and tree bark were
exposed at different sites for discontinuous periods of 2 months and continuously. Native lichens were collected as well.
The contents for 22 elements were obtained by both instrumental neutron activation analysis (INAA) and inductively coupled
plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). Quality control as asserted by analyzing ISE-921, NIST-1547 and TL-1 was good Losses of
As and Se by volatilization during sample digestion and neutron irradiation were evident, Ca contents by ICP-MS appeared underestimated
probably due to the formation of the insoluble fluoride. ICP-MS featured a better precision than INAA. Nonparametric statistics
were applied to the ICP-MS replicates, to those determined by INAA, and to compare the results of both techniques. High or
even excellent correlations were found between replicates in INAA, whereas, in ICP-MS, Cr and Ta were just fairly or not correlated.
As an overall comparison of the techniques, biased results were found for As, Ba, Ce, Cr, Cs, Hf, La, Sc, Se, Ta, and Zn,
unbiased results could be found for Ca, Co, Fe, K, Na, Rb, Sb, Sm, Tb, Th, and U.
Authors:J. Baptista, D. Vieira, A. Galisteo-Júnior, P. Caproni, M. Casare, H. de Andrade-Júnior, P. Spencer, and N. Nascimento
We investigated the immunological behavior of BTHX-1, before and after irradiation. SDS-PAGE showed that BTHX-1 irradiated
in the presence of NaNO3, had its structure preserved. Animals’ plasma immunized with native BTHX-1 had high IgG1 titers. The irradiated protein induced
high titers of IgG2b. When the toxin was irradiated with t-butanol, there was a slight decrease in the production of IgG2b.
Real-time PCR showed that both the IL-2 as for IL4 was more expression from the cells of the animals immunized with BTHX-1
irradiated. These results indicate that irradiation of proteins leads to significant structural modifications.
Authors:J. Baptista, D. Vieira, A. Galisteo Júnior, O. Higa, M. Casare, C. Yonamine, P. Caproni, L. Campos, H. de Andrade Júnior, P. Spencer, and N. Nascimento
In this work, the authors investigated the immunological behavior of bothropstoxin-I (BTHX-1), before and after irradiation
process, and also the influence of scavengers substances on protein alterations induced by free radical production. Structural
modifications were investigated by SDS-PAGE in reducing or non-reducing conditions. In vitro cytotoxicity assay was performed
to test average toxic activities of BTHX-I. BALB/c Isogenic mice were immunized with irradiated or non-irradiated (native)
forms of BTHX-I and antibody titers and isotypes were determined by ELISA method. Expression of murine cytokines was analyzed
by using expression data obtained by quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR) assays. The results indicate that irradiation of proteins
leads to significant structural modifications, and also changes the cytokines profile during immunization process, regarding
a suitable approach to new immunogenic production.
Authors:J.P. Duarte, Manuel Coelho-e-Silva, V. Severino, D. Martinho, L. Luz, J.R. Pereira, R. Baptista, J. Valente-dos-Santos, A.M. Machado-Rodrigues, V. Vaz, A. Cupido-dos-Santos, J. Martín-Hernández, S.P. Cumming, and R.M. Malina
The study was aimed to investigate the reproducibility of performance parameters obtained from 10-s maximal cycling effort against different braking forces in young adult athletes. The sample (n = 48) included male athletes aged 18.9–29.9 years (175.5 ± 6.9 cm, 76.2 ± 10.1 kg). The exercise protocol was performed in a cycle-ergometer against a random braking force (4% to 11% of body mass). Intra-individual variation was examined from repeated tests within one week. Descriptive statistics were computed and differences between sessions were tested using paired t-test. The coefficient of correlation between repeated measures, technical error of measurement (TEM), coefficient of variation and ICC were calculated. Agreement between trials was examined using the Bland-Altman procedure. Mean values of peak power were relatively stable when obtained from sampling rates of 50 Hz and ranged between 1068 watt and 1082 watt (t(47) = 1.149, p = 0.256, ES-r = 0.165) or while corresponding to a sampling rate of 1 Hz (t(47) = 0.742, p = 0.462, ES-r = 0.107). Correlations between repeated measures were high (+0.907, 95% CI: +0.839 to +0.947) and TEM about 59.3 watt (%CV = 5.52%; ICC = 0.951, 95% CI: 0.912 to 0.972). The present study suggests that reproducibility of peak power in male adult athletes tended to be acceptable and within individual error appeared unrelated to braking force.