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Sample records for free-living amoeba naegleria

  1. Detection and Identification of Free-living Amoeba from Environmental Water in Taiwan by PCR Method

    Tsai, H. F.; Hsu, B. M.; Huang, K. H.; She, C. Y.; Kao, P. M.; Shen, S. M.; Tseng, S. F.; Chen, J. S.

    2012-04-01

    Acanthamoeba, Naegleria, Balamuthia and Hartmannella all belong to free-living amoebae that are present ubiquitously in the environment including water, soil, and air. Free-living amoebae are parasites which can infect humans and can lead to serious illness and even death. The aim of this study is to investigate the presence of free-living amoebae in aquatic environment in Taiwan, and to compare the differences between Acanthamoeba and Naegleria in diverse cultivation methods and conditions. In this study, we used molecular method by PCR amplification with specific primers to analyze the occurrence of free-living amoebae. We collected 176 samples from environmental water including drinking water treatment plants, stream water, and hot spring recreational areas in Taiwan. Based on the results of PCR, 43 water samples (24.4%) were detected positive for free-living amoebae. The most common Acanthamoeba genotype isolated from samples including T2, T4, T5, T12, and T15. N. australiensis and N. lovaniensis were also identified by molecular biology techniques. Furthermore, we found that both Acanthamoeba and Naegleria can be cultured by PYG in 30° C, but not all free-living amoebae can be isolated and enriched by using storage-cultivation method. Because of the widespread presence of Acanthamoeba and Naegleria in aquatic environments, the water quality and safety of aquatic environments should be more conscious in Taiwan and worldwide. Keywords: free-living amoebae; Acanthamoeba; Naegleria; Balamuthia; Hartmannella; PCR

  2. Detection and identification of free-living amoeba from aquatic environment in Taiwan

    Jiun Tzeng, Kai; Che Tung, Min; Hsu, Bing Mu; Tsai, Hsiu Feng; Huang, Po Hsiang; Hao Huang, Kuan; Kao, Po Min; Shen, Shu Min; Chen, Jung Sheng

    2013-04-01

    Free-living amoebae including Acanthamoeba, Naegleria, Balamuthia and Hartmannella are widely distributed in water, soil, and air. They can infect humans and can lead to serious illness even death. The aim of this study is to investigate the presence of free-living amoebae from aquatic environment in Taiwan, and to compare the differences between Acanthamoeba and Naegleria in different cultivation methods and conditions. In this study, we used molecular method with specific primers by Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) to amplify and to analyze the occurrence of free-living amoebae in aquatic environment. We collected 92 samples from environmental water in Taiwan. The results show that 33 water samples (35.9%) and 11 water samples (12.0%) were detected positive for Acanthamoeba and Naegleria, respectively. Furthermore, both Acanthamoeba and Naegleria can be cultured by PYG in 30° C, but not all free-living amoebae can be enriched and isolated by using storage-cultivation method. Due to the presence of Acanthamoeba and Naegleria in aquatic environment, the water quality monitoring should be more conscious. Keywords: free-living amoebae; Acanthamoeba; Naegleria; Balamuthia; Hartmannella; PCR

  3. Detection and identification of free-living amoeba from aquatic environment in different seasons in Taiwan

    Tzeng, K.; Hsu, B.; Tsai, H.; Huang, P.; Tsai, J.; Kao, P.; Huang, K.; Chen, J.

    2013-12-01

    Free-living amoeba includes Acanthamoeba and Naegleria, which are widely distributed in water and soil. Human infection with free-living amoeba leads to serious illness, even lethal. For example, central nervous system infection will cause amoebic meningoencephalitis, and infections will cause amoebic keratitis. The presence of free-living amoeba in environment water can be used as a water quality indicator in ecosystem assessment. In Taiwan, reservoirs are indispensable because of the water source are limited by the steep terrain and the short river flow. Therefore, we need to pay more attention in the quality control of reservoirs water. The aims of this study are to investigate the presence of free-living amoeba in Taiwan reservoirs, and to compare the differences among seasons. At last, the identification and genotyping of Acanthamoeba and Naegleria are investigated. In this study, we use polymerase chain reaction with specific primers to analyze the presence of free-living amoeba in aquatic environment. We collected total 60 samples from reservoirs in Taiwan. The water samples are divided into two parts for both direct concentration method and culture method. The results show the different detection rates among seasons. For Acanthamoeba, the detection rates were 28.3% (17 of 60 water samples), 21.7% (13 of 60 water samples) and 8.3% (5 of 60 water samples) in autumn, winter and spring, respectively. For Naegleria, the detection rates were 6.7% (4 of 60 water samples), 0% (0 of 60 water samples) and 0% (0 of 60 water samples) were detected positive in autumn, winter and spring, respectively. Sequence analysis showed that the major genotypes in Acanthamoeba were T3, T4, T10 and T11 in autumn, T2, T4 and T10 in winter, T4 in spring. Due to the presences of Acanthamoeba and Naegleria in reservoirs, we should pay more attention in water quality monitoring to prevent the potential risks of diseases. Keywords: free-living amoeba, Acanthamoeba, Naegleria, polymerase

  4. Presence of rotavirus and free-living amoebae in the water supplies of Karachi, Pakistan

    Yousuf, Farzana Abubakar; Siddiqui, Ruqaiyyah; Khan, Naveed Ahmed

    2017-01-01

    ABSTRACT Rotavirus and pathogenic free-living amoebae are causative agents of important health problems, especially for developing countries like Pakistan where the population has limited access to clean water supplies. Here, we evaluated the prevalence of rotavirus and free-living amoebae (Acanthamoeba spp., Balamuthia mandrillaris, Naegleria fowleri) in drinking water supplies of Karachi, Pakistan. Six water filtration plants that supply drinking water to the population of Karachi were investigated. Additionally, drinking water samples from households were analyzed for the presence of rotavirus and free-living amoebae. Rotavirus was present in 35% of the water samples collected from water filtration plants; however, domestic tap water samples had a prevalence of only 5%. Out of 20 water samples from filtration plants, 13 (65%) were positive for Acanthamoeba spp., and one (5%) was positive for B. mandrillaris. Out of 20 drinking water samples collected from different areas of Karachi, 35% were positive for Acanthamoeba spp. Rotavirus was detected in 5% of the drinking water samples tested. Overall, these findings showed for the first time the presence of rotavirus, in addition to pathogenic free-living amoebae in drinking water supplies of Karachi that could be an important public health risk for the affected population. PMID:28591260

  5. Presence of rotavirus and free-living amoebae in the water supplies of Karachi, Pakistan

    Farzana Abubakar Yousuf

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Rotavirus and pathogenic free-living amoebae are causative agents of important health problems, especially for developing countries like Pakistan where the population has limited access to clean water supplies. Here, we evaluated the prevalence of rotavirus and free-living amoebae (Acanthamoeba spp., Balamuthia mandrillaris, Naegleria fowleri in drinking water supplies of Karachi, Pakistan. Six water filtration plants that supply drinking water to the population of Karachi were investigated. Additionally, drinking water samples from households were analyzed for the presence of rotavirus and free-living amoebae. Rotavirus was present in 35% of the water samples collected from water filtration plants; however, domestic tap water samples had a prevalence of only 5%. Out of 20 water samples from filtration plants, 13 (65% were positive for Acanthamoeba spp., and one (5% was positive for B. mandrillaris. Out of 20 drinking water samples collected from different areas of Karachi, 35% were positive for Acanthamoeba spp. Rotavirus was detected in 5% of the drinking water samples tested. Overall, these findings showed for the first time the presence of rotavirus, in addition to pathogenic free-living amoebae in drinking water supplies of Karachi that could be an important public health risk for the affected population.

  6. Pathogenic waterborne free-living amoebae: An update from selected Southeast Asian countries

    Abdul Majid, Mohamad Azlan; Mahboob, Tooba; Mong, Brandon G. J.; Jaturas, Narong; Richard, Reena Leeba; Tian-Chye, Tan; Phimphila, Anusorn; Mahaphonh, Panomphanh; Aye, Kyaw Nyein; Aung, Wai Lynn; Chuah, Joon; Ziegler, Alan D.; Yasiri, Atipat; Sawangjaroen, Nongyao; Lim, Yvonne A. L.; Nissapatorn, Veeranoot

    2017-01-01

    Data on the distribution of free-living amoebae is still lacking especially in Southeast Asian region. The aquatic environment revealed a high occurrence of free-living amoebae (FLA) due to its suitable condition and availability of food source, which subsequently causes infection to humans. A total of 94 water samples consisted of both treated and untreated from Laos (31), Myanmar (42), and Singapore (21) were investigated for the presence of pathogenic FLA. Each water sample was filtered and cultured onto non-nutrient agar seeded with live suspension of Escherichia coli and incubated at room temperature. Morphological identification was conducted for both trophozoites and cysts via microscopic stains (Giemsa and immunofluorescence). The presence of Naegleria-like structures was the most frequently encountered in both treated and untreated water samples, followed by Acanthamoeba-like and Vermamoeba-like features. To identify the pathogenic isolates, species-specific primer sets were applied for molecular identification of Acanthamoeba, Naegleria, and Vermamoeba. The pathogenic species of Acanthamoeba lenticulata and A. triangularis were detected from untreated water samples, while Vermamoeba vermiformis was found in both treated and untreated water samples. Our results suggested that poor water quality as well as inadequate maintenance and treatment might be the cause of this alarming problem since chlorine disinfection is ineffective in eradicating these amoebas in treated water samples. Regular monitoring and examination of water qualities are necessary in order to control the growth, hence, further preventing the widespread of FLA infections among the public. PMID:28212409

  7. Review: Occurrence of the pathogenic amoeba Naegleria fowleri in groundwater

    Bright, Kelly R.; Gerba, Charles P.

    2017-06-01

    Naegleria fowleri is a thermophilic free-living amoeba found worldwide in soils and warm freshwater. It is the causative agent of primary amebic meningoencephalitis, a nearly always fatal disease afflicting mainly children and young adults. Humans are exposed to the organism via swimming, bathing, or other recreational activity during which water is forcefully inhaled into the upper nasal passages. Although many studies have looked at the occurrence of N. fowleri in surface waters, limited information is available regarding its occurrence in groundwater and geothermally heated natural waters such as hot springs. This paper reviews the current literature related to the occurrence of N. fowleri in these waters and the methods employed for its detection. Case reports of potential groundwater exposures are also included. Despite increased interest in N. fowleri in recent years due to well-publicized cases linked to drinking water, many questions still remain unanswered. For instance, why the organism persists in some water sources and not in others is not well understood. The role of biofilms in groundwater wells and plumbing in individual buildings, and the potential for warming due to climate change to expand the occurrence of the organism into new regions, are still unclear. Additional research is needed to address these questions in order to better understand the ecology of N. fowleri and the conditions that result in greater risks to bathers.

  8. Distribution of Legionella pneumophila bacteria and Naegleria and Hartmannella amoebae in thermal saline baths used in balneotherapy.

    Zbikowska, Elżbieta; Walczak, Maciej; Krawiec, Arkadiusz

    2013-01-01

    The present study was aimed at investigating the coexistence and interactions between free living amoebae of Naegleria and Hartmannella genera and pathogenic Legionella pneumophila bacteria in thermal saline baths used in balneotherapy in central Poland. Water samples were collected from November 2010 to May 2011 at intervals longer than 1 month. The microorganisms were detected with the use of a very sensitive fluorescence in situ hybridisation method. In addition, the morphology of the amoebae was studied. Despite relatively high salinity level, ranging from 1.5 to 5.0 %, L. pneumophila were found in all investigated baths, although their number never exceeded 10(6) cells dm(-3). Hartmannella were not detected, while Naegleria fowleri were found in one bath. The observation that N. fowleri and L. pneumophila may coexist in thermal saline baths is the first observation emphasising potential threat from these microorganisms in balneotherapy.

  9. Isolamento de amebas de vida livre potencialmente patogênicas em poeira de hospitais Isolation of potencially pathogenic free-living amoebas in hospital dust

    Maria Aparecida da Silva

    2003-04-01

    Full Text Available OBJETIVO: Observar a ocorrência de amebas de vida livre dos gêneros Acanthamoeba e Naegleria em amostras de poeira coletadas em hospitais. MÉTODOS: Foram coletadas 132 amostras de poeira em dois hospitais do município de Presidente Prudente, São Paulo. Os locais da coleta foram: Unidade de Terapia Intensiva, Centro Cirúrgico, Isolamento de Moléstias Infecciosas, Berçário, Emergência e Cozinha. As amostras foram semeadas em três meios de cultura: meio de ágar não nutriente com Escherichia coli, meio de ágar infusão de soja e microcultivo em meio de Pavlova modificado por Giazzi. As amebas isoladas foram identificadas segundo critérios morfológicos. RESULTADOS: O índice geral de positividade para amebas de vida livre, potencialmente patogênicas, dos gêneros Acanthamoeba e Naegleria, foi de 45,5%, sendo positivas 41,6% das amostras de poeira coletadas no hospital universitário e 50% no hospital estadual. Obtiveram-se 45,5% de positividade do gênero Acanthamoeba e 3,8% para amebas do gênero Naegleria. CONCLUSÕES: As amebas de vida livre, potencialmente patogênicas, estavam presentes em todos os ambientes estudados dos dois hospitais, sendo que as espécies do gênero Acanthamoeba foram as isoladas com maior freqüência.OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the occurrence of free-living amoebas of the genera Acanthamoeba and Naegleria is dust samples colleted in two hospitals. METHODS: One-hundred and thirty-two dust samples were collected in two hospitals in Brazil. Hospital collection sites were the following: intensive care unit, operation rooms, nursery, kitchen, emergency and infectious diseases isolation room . The isolation of the amoebas was performed in three culture media: non-nutrient agar inoculated with Escherichia coli, soy agar, and microculture in Giazzi-modified Pavlova's medium. The amoebas were identified according to morphological criteria. RESULTS: Amoebas of the genera Acanthamoeba and Naegleria were found in 45.5% of

  10. Potentially pathogenic free-living amoebae in some flood-affected areas during 2011 Chiang Mai flood.

    Wannasan, Anchalee; Uparanukraw, Pichart; Songsangchun, Apichart; Morakote, Nimit

    2013-01-01

    The survey was carried out to investigate the presence of potentially pathogenic free-living amoebae (FLA) during flood in Chiang Mai, Thailand in 2011. From different crisis flood areas, seven water samples were collected and tested for the presence of amoebae using culture and molecular methods. By monoxenic culture, FLA were detected from all samples at 37 °C incubation. The FLA growing at 37 °C were morphologically identified as Acanthamoeba spp., Naegleria spp. and some unidentified amoebae. Only three samples (42.8%), defined as thermotolerant FLA, continued to grow at 42 °C. By molecular methods, two non-thermotolerant FlA were shown to have 99% identity to Acanthamoeba sp. and 98% identity to Hartmannella vermiformis while the two thermotolerant FLA were identified as Echinamoeba exundans (100% identity) and Hartmannella sp. (99% identity). This first report of the occurrence of FLA in water during the flood disaster will provide information to the public to be aware of potentially pathogenic FLA.

  11. Buse_Francisella and free-living amoebae data sets

    U.S. Environmental Protection Agency — Co-infection data in the form of colony forming units and amoeba cell counts. This dataset is associated with the following publication: Buse , H., F. Schaefer, and...

  12. Presence of Legionella and Free-Living Amoebae in Composts and Bioaerosols from Composting Facilities

    Conza, Lisa; Pagani, Simona Casati; Gaia, Valeria

    2013-01-01

    Several species of Legionella cause Legionnaires’ disease (LD). Infection may occur through inhalation of Legionella or amoebal vesicles. The reservoirs of Legionella are water, soil, potting soil and compost. Some species of free-living amoebae (FLA) that are naturally present in water and soil were described as hosts for Legionella. This study aimed to understand whether or not the composting facilities could be sources of community-acquired Legionella infections after development of bioaerosols containing Legionella or FLA. We looked for the presence of Legionella (by co-culture) and FLA (by culture) in composts and bioaerosols collected at four composting facilities located in southern Switzerland. We investigated the association between the presence of Legionella and compost and air parameters and presence of FLA. Legionella spp. (including L. pneumophila) were detected in 69.3% (61/88) of the composts and FLA (mainly Acanthamoeba, Vermamoeba, Naegleria and Stenamoeba) in 92.0% (81/88). L. pneumophila and L. bozemanii were most frequently isolated. FLA as potential host for Legionella spp. were isolated from 40.9% (36/88) of the composts in all facilities. In Legionella-positive samples the temperature of compost was significantly lower (P = 0.012) than in Legionella-negative samples. Of 47 bioaerosol samples, 19.1% (9/47) were positive for FLA and 10.6% (5/47) for L. pneumophila. Composts (62.8%) were positive for Legionella and FLA contemporaneously, but both microorganisms were never detected simultaneously in bioaerosols. Compost can release bioaerosol containing FLA or Legionella and could represent a source of infection of community-acquired Legionella infections for workers and nearby residents. PMID:23844174

  13. Presence of Legionella and free-living Amoebae in composts and bioaerosols from composting facilities.

    Lisa Conza

    Full Text Available Several species of Legionella cause Legionnaires' disease (LD. Infection may occur through inhalation of Legionella or amoebal vesicles. The reservoirs of Legionella are water, soil, potting soil and compost. Some species of free-living amoebae (FLA that are naturally present in water and soil were described as hosts for Legionella. This study aimed to understand whether or not the composting facilities could be sources of community-acquired Legionella infections after development of bioaerosols containing Legionella or FLA. We looked for the presence of Legionella (by co-culture and FLA (by culture in composts and bioaerosols collected at four composting facilities located in southern Switzerland. We investigated the association between the presence of Legionella and compost and air parameters and presence of FLA. Legionella spp. (including L. pneumophila were detected in 69.3% (61/88 of the composts and FLA (mainly Acanthamoeba, Vermamoeba, Naegleria and Stenamoeba in 92.0% (81/88. L. pneumophila and L. bozemanii were most frequently isolated. FLA as potential host for Legionella spp. were isolated from 40.9% (36/88 of the composts in all facilities. In Legionella-positive samples the temperature of compost was significantly lower (P = 0.012 than in Legionella-negative samples. Of 47 bioaerosol samples, 19.1% (9/47 were positive for FLA and 10.6% (5/47 for L. pneumophila. Composts (62.8% were positive for Legionella and FLA contemporaneously, but both microorganisms were never detected simultaneously in bioaerosols. Compost can release bioaerosol containing FLA or Legionella and could represent a source of infection of community-acquired Legionella infections for workers and nearby residents.

  14. Occurrence of Infected Free-Living Amoebae in Cooling Towers of Southern Brazil.

    Soares, Scheila S; Souza, Thamires K; Berté, Francisco K; Cantarelli, Vlademir V; Rott, Marilise B

    2017-12-01

    This study determined the occurrence of potentially pathogenic free-living amoebae (FLA) and bacteria associated with amoebae in air-conditioning cooling towers in southern Brazil. Water samples were collected from 36 cooling systems from air-conditioning in the state of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil. The organisms were identified using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and sequencing automated. The results showed that these aquatic environments, with variable temperature, are potential "hot spots" for emerging human pathogens like free-living amoebae and bacteria associated. In total, 92% of the cooling-tower samples analyzed were positive for FLA, and Acanthamoeba was the dominant genus by culture and PCR. Amoebal isolates revealed intracellular bacteria in 39.3% of them and all were confirmed as members of the genus Pseudomonas. The results obtained show the important role of cooling towers as a source of amoebae-associated pathogens.

  15. Free-living Acanthamoeba and Naegleria spp. amebae in water sources of León, Nicaragua

    Byron Leiva

    2008-06-01

    amoeboflagellates. Twelve of them were assigned to N. lovanenesis while none of the isolates could be identified as N. fowleri. However, the common presence of thermotolerant Naegleria in water, specially N. lovanensis, which is an indicator species for N. fowleri, suggests that also this pathogenic amoeba may pose a risk to public health in the area. On the other side, direct pathogenicity, free-living amebae are receiving increasing attention as reservoirs and potential vehicles for the transmission of bacteria in the environment. Thus the information provided in this study may serve as base-line for future studies on the role of free-living amebae e.g. in waterborne-disease outbreaks in the region. Among such potentially important enteropathgens are Vibrio cholerae, E. coli 0157, and Helicobacter pylori. Rev. Biol. Trop. 56 (2: 439-446. Epub 2008 June 30.Las amebas de vida libre (AVL son un grupo de organismos de distribución mundial. Entre las AVL hay parásitos facultativos en humanos y otros animales, los cuales pertenecen a los géneros Acanthamoeba, Naegleria y Balamuthia que causan infecciones severas en el sistema nervioso central. Sin embargo no se tiene ninguna información de Nicaragua. El objetivo de este estudio fue evaluar la presencia de amebas de vida libre, en diferentes fuentes de agua de la parte urbana y rural del Departamento de León, y áreas geotérmicas de Nicaragua. Estas amebas fueron identificadas usando criterios morfológicos, fisiológicos, histoquímicos y moleculares. En los resultados se encontró amebas de vida libre en el 43% del total de las muestras. En la municipalidad de León, se encontraron 21% de Acanthamopeba sp. y en las áreas geotérmicas un 2%. Las amebaflagelados tipo Naegleria fueron 10% y 19% respectivamente. Del grupo amebaflagelados fueron 24, de las cuales 12 se dentificaron como N. lovanensis. En estas muestras no se aisló N. fowleri (ameba patógena, sin embargo, la presencia de N. lovanensis es in indicador de la

  16. Environmental Free-Living Amoebae Isolated from Soil in Khon Kaen, Thailand, Antagonize Burkholderia pseudomallei.

    Parumon Noinarin

    Full Text Available Presence of Burkholderia pseudomallei in soil and water is correlated with endemicity of melioidosis in Southeast Asia and northern Australia. Several biological and physico-chemical factors have been shown to influence persistence of B. pseudomallei in the environment of endemic areas. This study was the first to evaluate the interaction of B. pseudomallei with soil amoebae isolated from B. pseudomallei-positive soil site in Khon Kaen, Thailand. Four species of amoebae, Paravahlkampfia ustiana, Acanthamoeba sp., Naegleria pagei, and isolate A-ST39-E1, were isolated, cultured and identified based on morphology, movement and 18S rRNA gene sequence. Co-cultivation combined with a kanamycin-protection assay of B. pseudomallei with these amoebae at MOI 20 at 30°C were evaluated during 0-6 h using the plate count technique on Ashdown's agar. The fate of intracellular B. pseudomallei in these amoebae was also monitored by confocal laser scanning microscopy (CLSM observation of the CellTracker™ Orange-B. pseudomallei stained cells. The results demonstrated the ability of P. ustiana, Acanthamoeba sp. and isolate A-ST39-E1 to graze B. pseudomallei. However, the number of internalized B. pseudomallei substantially decreased and the bacterial cells disappeared during the observation period, suggesting they had been digested. We found that B. pseudomallei promoted the growth of Acanthamoeba sp. and isolate A-ST39-E1 in co-cultures at MOI 100 at 30°C, 24 h. These findings indicated that P. ustiana, Acanthamoeba sp. and isolate A-ST39-E1 may prey upon B. pseudomallei rather than representing potential environmental reservoirs in which the bacteria can persist.

  17. Pathogenic free-living amoebae in a closed-loop power plant; risk assessment and risk management

    Cabanes, P.; Pernin, P.

    1998-01-01

    Since 1980, the water used for cooling in French power plants has been tested for pathogenic amoebae, especially Naegleria fowleri, the causative agent of Primary Amoebic Meningoencephalitis (PAM), a rapid fatal disease of the central nervous system. The replacement of brass condensers by stainless steel condensers resulted in increased Naegleria fowleri development, to a density of as much as 3000 l -1 in the Dampierre power plant cooling water. Downstream from Dampierre, the maximum detected density of this amoeba during the summer of 1995 was 80 l -1 , at low river flow. The replacement of a second condenser in 1996 at the same power plant was expected to double the amoebae concentration in the river. The hypothetical PAM risk for swimmers was then predicted to be 10 -4 per swim. To reduce the risk continuous chlorination of the closed-loop cooling system was implemented at a free residual chlorine level in the range of 0.3-0.5 mg.l -1 . Naegleria fowleri concentrations decreased immediately and thereafter remained under 4 l -1 . Total residual chlorine and chlorinated organic compounds were also monitored in the evaluation of the environmental impact of this preventive action. (authors)

  18. A free-living amoeba with unusual pattern of mitochondrial structure isolated from Atlantic salmon, Salmo salar L

    Dyková, Iva; Veverková, Marie; Fiala, Ivan; Macháčková, Blanka

    2002-01-01

    Roč. 41, - (2002), s. 415-419 ISSN 0065-1583 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR IAA6022202 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z6022909 Keywords : free-living amoeba * mitochondrial cristae * Salmo salar Subject RIV: EA - Cell Biology Impact factor: 0.446, year: 2002

  19. Prevalence of pathogenic free-living amoeba and other protozoa in natural and communal piped tap water from Queen Elizabeth protected area, Uganda.

    Sente, Celsus; Erume, Joseph; Naigaga, Irene; Mulindwa, Julius; Ochwo, Sylvester; Magambo, Phillip Kimuda; Namara, Benigna Gabriela; Kato, Charles Drago; Sebyatika, George; Muwonge, Kevin; Ocaido, Michael

    2016-08-03

    Pathogenic water dwelling protozoa such as Acanthamoeba spp., Hartmannella spp., Naegleria spp., Cryptosporidium spp. and Giardia spp. are often responsible for devastating illnesses especially in children and immunocompromised individuals, yet their presence and prevalence in certain environment in sub-Saharan Africa is still unknown to most researchers, public health officials and medical practitioners. The objective of this study was to establish the presence and prevalence of pathogenic free-living amoeba (FLA), Cryptosporidium and Giardia in Queen Elizabeth Protected Area (QEPA). Samples were collected from communal taps and natural water sites in QEPA. Physical water parameters were measured in situ. The samples were processed to detect the presence of FLA trophozoites by xenic cultivation, Cryptosporidium oocysts by Ziehl-Neelsen stain and Giardia cysts by Zinc Sulphate floatation technique. Parasites were observed microscopically, identified, counted and recorded. For FLA, genomic DNA was extracted for amplification and sequencing. Both natural and tap water sources were contaminated with FLA, Cryptosporidium spp. and Giardia spp. All protozoan parasites were more abundant in the colder rainy season except for Harmannella spp. and Naegleria spp. which occurred more in the warmer months. The prevalence of all parasites was higher in tap water than in natural water samples. There was a strong negative correlation between the presence of Acanthamoeba spp., Hartmannella spp., Cryptosporidium spp. and Giardia spp. with Dissolved Oxygen (DO) (P protozoa that could possibly be the cause of a number of silent morbidities and mortalities among rural households in QEPA. This implies that water used by communities in QEPA is of poor quality and predisposes them to a variety of protozoan infections including the FLA whose public health importance was never reported, thus necessitating adoption of proper water safety measures.

  20. Naegleria

    ... Work: Naegleria fowleri CDC at Work: On Call 24/7 Healthy Water Sites Healthy Water Drinking Water Healthy ... Information Language: English (US) Español (Spanish) Recommend on Facebook Tweet Share Compartir Frequently Asked Questions What is ...

  1. Preferential feeding in Naegleria fowleri; intracellular bacteria isolated from amoebae in operational drinking water distribution systems.

    Miller, Haylea C; Morgan, Matthew J; Walsh, Tom; Wylie, Jason T; Kaksonen, Anna H; Puzon, Geoffrey J

    2018-05-06

    The amoeba Naegleria fowleri is the causative agent of the highly fatal disease, primary amoebic meningoencephalitis, and estimated to cause 16 deaths per year in the United States alone. Colonisation of drinking water distribution systems (DWDSs) by the N. fowleri is a significant public health issue. Understanding the factors which enable this pathogen to colonise and thrive in DWDSs is critical for proper management. The microbial ecology within DWDSs may influence the ability of N. fowleri to colonise DWDSs by facilitating the availability of an appropriate food source. Using biofilm samples obtained from operational DWDSs, 16S rRNA amplicon metabarcoding was combined with genus-specific PCR and Sanger sequencing of intracellular associated bacteria from isolated amoeba and their parental biofilms to identify Meiothermus chliarophilus as a potential food source for N. fowleri. Meiothermus was confirmed as a food source for N. fowleri following successful serial culturing of axenic N. fowleri with M. chliarophilus or M. ruber as the sole food source. The ability to identify environmental and ecological conditions favourable to N. fowleri colonisation, including the detection of appropriate food sources such as Meiothermus, could provide water utilities with a predictive tool for managing N. fowleri colonisation within the DWDS. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Detection of viable Helicobacter pylori inside free-living amoebae in wastewater and drinking water samples from Eastern Spain.

    Moreno-Mesonero, Laura; Moreno, Yolanda; Alonso, José Luis; Ferrús, M Antonia

    2017-10-01

    Helicobacter pylori is one of the most concerning emerging waterborne pathogens. It has been suggested that it could survive in water inside free-living amoebae (FLA), but nobody has studied this relationship in the environment yet. Thus, we aimed to detect viable H. pylori cells from inside FLA in water samples. Sixty-nine wastewater and 31 drinking water samples were collected. FLA were purified and identified by PCR and sequencing. For exclusively detecting H. pylori inside FLA, samples were exposed to sodium hypochlorite and assayed by specific PMA-qPCR, DVC-FISH and culture. FLA were detected in 38.7% of drinking water and 79.7% of wastewater samples, even after disinfection. In wastewater, Acanthamoeba spp. and members of the family Vahlkampfiidae were identified. In drinking water, Acanthamoeba spp. and Echinamoeba and/or Vermamoeba were present. In 39 (58.2%) FLA-positive samples, H. pylori was detected by PMA-qPCR. After DVC-FISH, 21 (31.3%) samples harboured viable H. pylori internalized cells. H. pylori was cultured from 10 wastewater samples. To our knowledge, this is the first report that demonstrates that H. pylori can survive inside FLA in drinking water and wastewater, strongly supporting the hypothesis that FLA could play an important role in the transmission of H. pylori to humans. © 2017 Society for Applied Microbiology and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  3. Environmental factors shaping cultured free-living amoebae and their associated bacterial community within drinking water network.

    Delafont, Vincent; Bouchon, Didier; Héchard, Yann; Moulin, Laurent

    2016-09-01

    Free-living amoebae (FLA) constitute an important part of eukaryotic populations colonising drinking water networks. However, little is known about the factors influencing their ecology in such environments. Because of their status as reservoir of potentially pathogenic bacteria, understanding environmental factors impacting FLA populations and their associated bacterial community is crucial. Through sampling of a large drinking water network, the diversity of cultivable FLA and their bacterial community were investigated by an amplicon sequencing approach, and their correlation with physicochemical parameters was studied. While FLA ubiquitously colonised the water network all year long, significant changes in population composition were observed. These changes were partially explained by several environmental parameters, namely water origin, temperature, pH and chlorine concentration. The characterisation of FLA associated bacterial community reflected a diverse but rather stable consortium composed of nearly 1400 OTUs. The definition of a core community highlighted the predominance of only few genera, majorly dominated by Pseudomonas and Stenotrophomonas. Co-occurrence analysis also showed significant patterns of FLA-bacteria association, and allowed uncovering potentially new FLA - bacteria interactions. From our knowledge, this study is the first that combines a large sampling scheme with high-throughput identification of FLA together with associated bacteria, along with their influencing environmental parameters. Our results demonstrate the importance of physicochemical parameters in the ecology of FLA and their bacterial community in water networks. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Folic acid is a potent chemoattractant of free-living amoebae in a new and amazing species of protist, Vahlkampfia sp.

    Maeda, Yasuo; Mayanagi, Taira; Amagai, Aiko

    2009-03-01

    Folic acid (folate; vitamin Bc) is well recognized as essential for the proper metabolism of the essential amino acid methionine as well as for the synthesis of adenine and thymine. A folate deficiency has been Implicated in a wide variety of disorders from Alzheimer's disease to depression and neural tube defects. In the cellular slime molds, including Dictyostelium, vegetative growth-phase cells are known to chemotactically move toward folate that is secreted by bacterial food sources such as Escherichia coli. Intracellular folate signal transductlon, including G proteins, Ca(2+)channels, and the PIP3 pathway, has been reported in D. discoideum. To our surprise, the genuine chemoattractant(s) of free-living protozoan amoebae have remained to be determined, possibly because of lack of a pertinent method for assaying chemotaxis. We recently isolated a primitive free-living amoeba from the soil of Costa Rica and identified it as a new species of the genus Vahlkampfia belonging to Subclass Gymnamoebia, which includes Entamoeba and Acanthamoeba. The amoebae can grow and multiply quite rapidly, engulfing nearby bacteria such as E. coli. Importantly, we have demonstrated here using a quite simple but finely designed chemotaxis assay that the Vahlkampfia amoebae exhibit chemotaxis toward higher folate concentrations. Riboflavin and cyanocobalamin were also found to serve as positive chemoattractants. Among these chemoattractants, folate is of particular importance because its function seems to be evolutionarily conserved as a potent chemoattractant of amoeboid cells in a wide range of organisms as well as in the Protista and cellular slime molds.

  5. Differential growth of Legionella pneumophila strains within a range of amoebae at various temperatures associated with in-premise plumbing

    The potential effect of in-premise plumbing temperatures (24, 32, 37 and 41 °C) on the growth of five different L. pneumophila strains within free-living amoebae (Acanthamoeba polyphaga, Hartmannella vermiformis and Naegleria fowleri) was examined. Compared to controls only fed E...

  6. Ubiquiter circovirus sequences raise challenges in laboratory diagnosis: the case of honey bee and bee mite, reptiles, and free living amoebae.

    Marton, Szilvia; Ihász, Katalin; Lengyel, György; Farkas, Szilvia L; Dán, Ádám; Paulus, Petra; Bányai, Krisztián; Fehér, Enikő

    2015-03-01

    Circoviruses of pigs and birds are established pathogens, however, the exact role of other, recently described circoviruses and circovirus-like viruses remains to be elucidated. The aim of this study was the detection of circoviruses in neglected host species, including honey bees, exotic reptiles and free-living amoebae by widely used broad-spectrum polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assays specific for the replication initiation protein coding gene of these viruses. The majority of sequences obtained from honey bees were highly similar to canine and porcine circoviruses, or, were distantly related to dragonfly cycloviruses. Other rep sequences detected in some honey bees, reptiles and amoebae showed similarities to various rep sequences deposited in the GenBank. Back-to-back PCR primers designed for the amplification of whole viral genomes failed to work that suggested the existence of integrated rep-like elements in many samples. Rolling circle amplification and exonuclease treatment confirmed the absence of small circular DNA genomes in the specimens analysed. In case of honey bees Varroa mite DNA contamination might be a source of the identified endogenous rep-like elements. The reptile and amoebae rep-like sequences were nearly identical with each other and with sequences detected in chimpanzee feces raising the possibility that detection of novel or unusual rep-like elements in some host species might originate from the microbial community of the host. Our results indicate that attention is needed when broad-spectrum rep gene specific polymerase chain reaction is chosen for laboratory diagnosis of circovirus infections.

  7. Long-term survival of Naegleria polaris from Antarctica after 10 years of storage at 4 °C.

    Matsuo, Junji; Nakamura, Shinji; Okubo, Torahiko; Fukui, Manabu; Yamaguchi, Hiroyuki

    2018-03-01

    A free-living amoeba, Naegleria is ubiquitously distributed in various natural environments. Since some Naegleria spp. are exclusively distributed in the Arctic and sub-Antarctic regions, we hypothesized that the amoeba may be useful to determine long-term survival of Naegleria in laboratory conditions at 4 °C. The main objective of the study is to determine that a species of an environmental amoebal isolated can live at low temperatures after a long time. Here, we therefore show long-term survival of an amoeba, Naegleria polaris isolated from a sediment sample, which was collected from Antarctica 10 years ago, and since stored at 4 °C. The sample was put on non-nutrient agar plates with heat-killed Escherichia coli, and then the plate was incubated at 4, 15, or 30 °C. Motile amoebae were seen only when the plate was incubated at 15 °C. The sequencing of ribosomal DNA including internal transcribed spacers (ITS) 1, 5.8S rDNA, and ITS2 region revealed the amoebae to be N. polaris, which is exclusively distributed in the Arctic and sub-Antarctic regions. Scanning electron microscopic observation showed that no typical sucker-like structure was seen on the surface of N. polaris, but the cysts were similar to those of Naegleria fowleri. Thus, our result shows, for the first time, that N. polaris can survive after 10 years of storage at 4 °C. This finding may help us understand the still undescribed effects of environmental samples on viability of amoebae.

  8. Surveillance of parasitic Legionella in surface waters by using immunomagnetic separation and amoebae enrichment.

    Hsu, Tsui-Kang; Wu, Shu-Fen; Hsu, Bing-Mu; Kao, Po-Min; Tao, Chi-Wei; Shen, Shu-Min; Ji, Wen-Tsai; Huang, Wen-Chien; Fan, Cheng-Wei

    2015-01-01

    Free-living amoebae (FLA) are potential reservoirs of Legionella in aquatic environments. However, the parasitic relationship between various Legionella and amoebae remains unclear. In this study, surface water samples were gathered from two rivers for evaluating parasitic Legionella. Warmer water temperature is critical to the existence of Legionella. This result suggests that amoebae may be helpful in maintaining Legionella in natural environments because warmer temperatures could enhance parasitisation of Legionella in amoebae. We next used immunomagnetic separation (IMS) to identify extracellular Legionella and remove most free Legionella before detecting the parasitic ones in selectively enriched amoebae. Legionella pneumophila was detected in all the approaches, confirming that the pathogen is a facultative amoebae parasite. By contrast, two obligate amoebae parasites, Legionella-like amoebal pathogens (LLAPs) 8 and 9, were detected only in enriched amoebae. However, several uncultured Legionella were detected only in the extracellular samples. Because the presence of potential hosts, namely Vermamoeba vermiformis, Acanthamoeba spp. and Naegleria gruberi, was confirmed in the samples that contained intracellular Legionella, uncultured Legionella may survive independently of amoebae. Immunomagnetic separation and amoebae enrichment may have referential value for detecting parasitic Legionella in surface waters.

  9. Susceptibility of pathogenic and nonpathogenic Naegleria ssp

    Whiteman, L.Y.

    1988-01-01

    The susceptibility of four species of Naegleria amoebae to complement-mediated lysis was determined. The amoebicidal activity of normal human serum (NHS) and normal guinea pig serum (NGPS) for Naegleria amoebae was measured by an in vitro cytotoxicity assay. Release of radioactivity from amoebae labeled with 3 H-uridine and visual observation with a compound microscope were used as indices of lysis. Susceptibility or resistance to complement-mediated lysis in vitro correlated with the in vivo pathogenic potential. Nonpathogenic Naegleria amoebae were lysed at a faster rate and at higher cell concentrations than were pathogenic amoebae. Electrophoretic analysis of NHS incubated with pathogenic or nonpathogenic Naegleria spp. demonstrated that amoebae activate the complement cascade resulting in the production of C3 and C5 complement cleavage products. Treatment with papain or trypsin for 1 h, but not with sialidase, increase the susceptibility of highly pathogenic, mouse-passaged N. fowleri to lysis. Treatment with actinomycin D, cycloheximide or various protease inhibitors for 4 h did not increase susceptibility to lysis. Neither a repair process involving de novo protein synthesis nor a complement-inactivating protease appear to account for the increase resistance of N. fowleri amoebae to complement-mediated lysis. A binding study with 125 I radiolabeled C9 indicated that the terminal complement component does not remain stably bound to the membrane of pathogenic amoebae

  10. Comparison of biofilm ecology supporting growth of individual Naegleria species in a drinking water distribution system.

    Puzon, Geoffrey J; Wylie, Jason T; Walsh, Tom; Braun, Kalan; Morgan, Matthew J

    2017-04-01

    Free-living amoebae (FLA) are common components of microbial communities in drinking water distribution systems (DWDS). FLA are of clinical importance both as pathogens and as reservoirs for bacterial pathogens, so identifying the conditions promoting amoebae colonisation of DWDSs is an important public health concern for water utilities. We used high-throughput amplicon sequencing to compare eukaryotic and bacterial communities associated with DWDS biofilms supporting distinct FLA species (Naegleria fowleri, N. lovaniensis or Vermamoeba sp.) at sites with similar physical/chemical conditions. Eukaryote and bacterial communities were characteristics of different FLA species presence, and biofilms supporting Naegleria growth had higher bacterial richness and higher abundance of Proteobacteria, Bacteroidetes (bacteria), Nematoda and Rotifera (eukaryota). The eukaryotic community in the biofilms had the greatest difference in relation to the presence of N. fowleri, while the bacterial community identified individual bacterial families associated with the presence of different Naegleria species. Our results demonstrate that ecogenomics data provide a powerful tool for studying the microbial and meiobiotal content of biofilms, and, in these samples can effectively discriminate biofilm communities supporting pathogenic N. fowleri. The identification of microbial species associated with N. fowleri could further be used in the management and control of N. fowleri in DWDS. © FEMS 2017. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  11. Iron economy in Naegleria gruberi reflects its metabolic flexibility.

    Mach, Jan; Bíla, Jarmila; Ženíšková, Kateřina; Arbon, Dominik; Malych, Ronald; Glavanakovová, Marie; Nývltová, Eva; Sutak, Robert

    2018-05-05

    Naegleria gruberi is a free-living amoeba, closely related to the human pathogen Naegleria fowleri, the causative agent of the deadly human disease primary amoebic meningoencephalitis. Herein, we investigated the effect of iron limitation on different aspects of N. gruberi metabolism. Iron metabolism is among the most conserved pathways found in all eukaryotes. It includes the delivery, storage and utilisation of iron in many cell processes. Nevertheless, most of the iron metabolism pathways of N. gruberi are still not characterised, even though iron balance within the cell is crucial. We found a single homolog of ferritin in the N. gruberi genome and showed its localisation in the mitochondrion. Using comparative mass spectrometry, we identified 229 upregulated and 184 down-regulated proteins under iron-limited conditions. The most down-regulated protein under iron-limited conditions was hemerythrin, and a similar effect on the expression of hemerythrin was found in N. fowleri. Among the other down-regulated proteins were [FeFe]-hydrogenase and its maturase HydG and several heme-containing proteins. The activities of [FeFe]-hydrogenase, as well as alcohol dehydrogenase, were also decreased by iron deficiency. Our results indicate that N. gruberi is able to rearrange its metabolism according to iron availability, prioritising mitochondrial pathways. We hypothesise that the mitochondrion is the center for iron homeostasis in N. gruberi, with mitochondrially localised ferritin as a potential key component of this process. Copyright © 2018 Australian Society for Parasitology. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. The Genome of Naegleria gruberi Illuminates Early Eukaryotic Versatility

    Fritz-Laylin, Lillian K.; Prochnik, Simon E.; Ginger, Michael L.; Dacks, Joel; Carpenter, Meredith L.; Field, Mark C.; Kuo, Alan; Paredez, Alex; Chapman, Jarrod; Pham, Jonathan; Shu, Shengqiang; Neupane, Rochak; Cipriano, Michael; Mancuso, Joel; Tu, Hank; Salamov, Asaf; Lindquist, Erika; Shapiro, Harris; Lucas, Susan; Grigoriev, Igor V.; Cande, W. Zacheus; Fulton, Chandler; Rokhsar, Daniel S.; Dawson, Scott C.

    2010-03-01

    Genome sequences of diverse free-living protists are essential for understanding eukaryotic evolution and molecular and cell biology. The free-living amoeboflagellate Naegleria gruberi belongs to a varied and ubiquitous protist clade (Heterolobosea) that diverged from other eukaryotic lineages over a billion years ago. Analysis of the 15,727 protein-coding genes encoded by Naegleria's 41 Mb nuclear genome indicates a capacity for both aerobic respiration and anaerobic metabolism with concomitant hydrogen production, with fundamental implications for the evolution of organelle metabolism. The Naegleria genome facilitates substantially broader phylogenomic comparisons of free-living eukaryotes than previously possible, allowing us to identify thousands of genes likely present in the pan-eukaryotic ancestor, with 40% likely eukaryotic inventions. Moreover, we construct a comprehensive catalog of amoeboid-motility genes. The Naegleria genome, analyzed in the context of other protists, reveals a remarkably complex ancestral eukaryote with a rich repertoire of cytoskeletal, sexual, signaling, and metabolic modules.

  13. Expression of matrix metalloproteinases in Naegleria fowleri and their role in invasion of the central nervous system.

    Lam, Charlton; Jamerson, Melissa; Cabral, Guy; Carlesso, Ana Maris; Marciano-Cabral, Francine

    2017-10-01

    Naegleria fowleri is a free-living amoeba found in freshwater lakes and ponds and is the causative agent of primary amoebic meningoencephalitis (PAM), a rapidly fatal disease of the central nervous system (CNS). PAM occurs when amoebae attach to the nasal epithelium and invade the CNS, a process that involves binding to, and degradation of, extracellular matrix (ECM) components. This degradation is mediated by matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs), enzymes that have been described in other pathogenic protozoa, and that have been linked to their increased motility and invasive capability. These enzymes also are upregulated in tumorigenic cells and have been implicated in metastasis of certain tumours. In the present study, in vitro experiments linked MMPs functionally to the degradation of the ECM. Gelatin zymography demonstrated enzyme activity in N. fowleri whole cell lysates, conditioned media and media collected from invasion assays. Western immunoblotting indicated the presence of the metalloproteinases MMP-2 (gelatinase A), MMP-9 (gelatinase B) and MMP-14 [membrane type-1 matrix metalloproteinase (MT1-MMP)]. Highly virulent mouse-passaged amoebae expressed higher levels of MMPs than weakly virulent axenically grown amoebae. The functional relevance of MMPs in media was indicated through the use of the MMP inhibitor, 1,10-phenanthroline. The collective in vitro results suggest that MMPs play a critical role in vivo in invasion of the CNS and that these enzymes may be amenable targets for limiting PAM.

  14. Fatal Primary Meningoencephalitis Caused By Naegleria Fowleri

    Shariq, A.; Afridi, F. I.; Farooqi, B. J.; Husaain, A.; Ahmed, S.

    2014-01-01

    Naegleria fowleri is a free living parasite which habitats in fresh water reservoirs. It causes a fatal nervous system infection known as primary amoebic meningoencephalitis by invading through cribriform plate of nose and gaining entry into brain. We report a case of primary amoebic meningoencephalitis caused by Naegleria fowleri in Karachi, Pakistan, in a 42 years old male poultry farm worker having no history of swimming. Clinical course was fulminant and death occurred within one week of hospital admission. Naegleria fowleri was detected by wet mount technique in the sample of cerebrospinal fluid collected by lumbar puncture of patient. This is a serious problem and requires immediate steps to prevent general population to get affected by this lethal neurological infection. (author)

  15. Counting Legionella cells within single amoeba host cells

    Here we present the first attempt to quantify L. pneumophila cell numbers within individual amoebae hosts that may be released into engineered water systems. The maximum numbers of culturable L. pneumophila cells grown within Acanthamoeba polyphaga and Naegleria fowleri were 134...

  16. Free-living amoebae isolated in the Central African Republic ...

    Bathing sites and cerebrospinal fluid from patients died of bacterial meningitis untagged were explored by culture and PCR and the amplicons were sequenced which allowed to characterize the species found. Only species of the genus Tetramitus, namely T. Entericus, T. waccamawensis and T.sp similar to those already ...

  17. Naegleria fowleri in thermally polluted waters

    Kasprzak, W; Mazur, T; Cerva, L

    1982-01-01

    Two complexes of lakes and canals supplying water for two electric power plants, their steam condensors and an adjoining river were investigated by means of culture methods for the presence of Naegleria fowleri in Poland in the period from 1974 to 1980. Sixty-four strains of N. fowleri were isolated, 13 isolates being virulent for mice when instilled intranasally. These strains were found in the steam condensor of the power station A and in waters polluted with warm water of this plant. Pathogenic N. fowleri strains occurred also in an adjoining river connected with the water system of the power plant. The results show the possible role of the steam condensor A as an incubator and regular source of pollution with pathogenic amoebae for its own system of cooling waters and even the adjoining river.

  18. Hospital hydrotherapy pools treated with ultra violet light: bad bacteriological quality and presence of thermophilic Naegleria.

    De Jonckheere, J. F.

    1982-01-01

    The microbiological quality of eight halogenated and two u.v.-treated hydrotherapy pools in hospitals was investigated. The microbiological quality of halogenated hydrotherapy pools was comparable to halogenated public swimming pools, although in some Pseudomonas aeruginosa and faecal pollution indicators were more frequent due to bad management. On the other hand u.v.-treated hydrotherapy pools had very bad microbiological quality. Apart from faecal pollution indicators, P. aeruginosa was present in very high numbers. Halogenated hydrotherapy pools were not highly contaminated with amoebae, and Naegleria spp. were never detected. On the other hand u.v.-treated pools contained very high numbers of thermophilic Naegleria. The Naegleria isolated were identified as N. lovaniensis, a species commonly found in association with N. fowleri. Isoenzyme analysis showed a different type of N. lovaniensis was present in each of two u.v.-treated pools. Images Plate 1 PMID:7061835

  19. Repertoire of free-living protozoa in contact lens solutions.

    Bouchoucha, Ibtissem; Aziz, Aurore; Hoffart, Louis; Drancourt, Michel

    2016-10-29

    The repertoire of free-living protozoa in contact lens solutions is poorly known despite the fact that such protozoa may act as direct pathogens and may harbor intra-cellular pathogens. Between 2009 and 2014, the contact lens solutions collected from patients presenting at our Ophthalmology Department for clinically suspected keratitis, were cultured on non-nutrient agar examined by microscope for the presence of free-living protozoa. All protozoa were identified by 18S rRNA gene sequencing. A total of 20 of 233 (8.6 %) contact lens solution specimens collected from 16 patients were cultured. Acanthamoeba amoeba in 16 solutions (80 %) collected from 12 patients and Colpoda steini, Cercozoa sp., Protostelium sp. and a eukaryotic more closely related to Vermamoeba sp., were each isolated in one solution. Cercozoa sp., Colpoda sp., Protostelium sp. and Vermamoeba sp. are reported for the first time as contaminating contact lens solutions. The repertoire of protozoa in contact lens solutions is larger than previously known.

  20. Concentration of Naegleria fowleri in natural waters used for recreational purposes in Sonora, Mexico (November 2007-October 2008).

    Lares-Villa, Fernando; Hernández-Peña, Claudia

    2010-09-01

    A survey was designed to know the concentration of Naegleria fowleri in recreational areas in Hornos, Sonora, during a year. Samples were taken monthly at La Isleta and Las Palmas and the total amoeba counts were obtained by the most probable number method (MPN). The identification of N. fowleri was made by PCR. The maximum concentration of total thermophilic amoebae was 9175 MPN/L for La Isleta and 3477 MPN/L for Las Palmas. Thermophilic Naegleria were present mainly during summer and fall. October's concentrations were up to 201 MPN/L, at both places. The maximum concentrations of N. fowleri were 201 MPN/L and 18 MPN/L for La Isleta and Las Palmas respectively, and were isolated from August to October. The presence of N. fowleri in these particular natural bodies of water reinforces the need for adaptation of preventive measures to avoid cases of primary amoebic meningoencephalitis. Copyright 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Rapid centriole assembly in Naegleria reveals conserved roles for both de novo and mentored assembly.

    Fritz-Laylin, Lillian K; Levy, Yaron Y; Levitan, Edward; Chen, Sean; Cande, W Zacheus; Lai, Elaine Y; Fulton, Chandler

    2016-03-01

    Centrioles are eukaryotic organelles whose number and position are critical for cilia formation and mitosis. Many cell types assemble new centrioles next to existing ones ("templated" or mentored assembly). Under certain conditions, centrioles also form without pre-existing centrioles (de novo). The synchronous differentiation of Naegleria amoebae to flagellates represents a unique opportunity to study centriole assembly, as nearly 100% of the population transitions from having no centrioles to having two within minutes. Here, we find that Naegleria forms its first centriole de novo, immediately followed by mentored assembly of the second. We also find both de novo and mentored assembly distributed among all major eukaryote lineages. We therefore propose that both modes are ancestral and have been conserved because they serve complementary roles, with de novo assembly as the default when no pre-existing centriole is available, and mentored assembly allowing precise regulation of number, timing, and location of centriole assembly. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  2. Amoeba/amoebal symbiont genetic transfers: lessons from giant virus neighbours.

    Thomas, Vincent; Greub, Gilbert

    2010-01-01

    Free-living amoebae serve as hosts for a variety of amoebae-resisting microorganisms, including giant viruses and certain bacteria. The latter include symbiotic bacteria as well as bacteria exhibiting a pathogenic phenotype towards amoebae. Amoebae-resisting bacteria have been shown to be widespread in water and to use the amoebae as a reservoir, a replication niche, a protective armour as well as a training ground to select virulence traits allowing survival in the face of microbicidal effects of macrophages, the first line of defense against invading pathogens. More importantly, amoebae play a significant role as a melting pot for genetic exchanges. These ecological and evolutionary roles of amoebae might also be at play for giant viruses and knowledge derived from the study of amoebae-resisting bacteria is useful for the study and understanding of interactions between amoebae and giant viruses. This is especially important since some genes have spread in all domains of life and the exponential availability of eukaryotic genomes and metagenomic sequences will allow researchers to explore these genetic exchanges in a more comprehensive way, thus completely changing our perception of the evolutionary history of organisms. Thus, a large part of this review is dedicated to report current known gene exchanges between the different amoebae-resisting organisms and between amoebae and the internalized bacteria. Copyright 2010 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  3. Brain-Eating Amoebae: Predilection Sites in the Brain and Disease Outcome

    Ong, Timothy Yu Yee; Khan, Naveed Ahmed; Siddiqui, Ruqaiyyah

    2017-01-01

    Acanthamoeba spp. and Balamuthia mandrillaris are causative agents of granulomatous amoebic encephalitis (GAE), while Naegleria fowleri causes primary amoebic meningoencephalitis (PAM). PAM is an acute infection that lasts a few days, while GAE is a chronic to subacute infection that can last up to several months. Here, we present a literature review of 86 case reports from 1968 to 2016, in order to explore the affinity of these amoebae for particular sites of the brain, diagnostic modalities...

  4. Parasitic amoebae found in water bodies of Ukraine.

    Patsyuk, Marina

    2017-12-01

    Two parasitic amoebian species are found in mollusks of the water bodies of Ukraine. Vahlkampfia sp. is found in hepatopankreas of Unio conus Spengler, 1793, and Acanthamoeba sp. is observed in mantle cavity of Viviparus viviparus Linnaeus, 1758. For these protist species, the mollusks are shown to be intermediate hosts where amoebae feed and reproduce. An experimental infection with Vahlkampfia sp. and Acanthamoeba sp. was not successful, no pathological changes in mollusks were observed. These amoebae are successfully cultured in fresh water and agar medium, hence we can safely consider them free-living. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Marine amoebae with cytoplasmic and perinuclear symbionts deeply branching in the Gammaproteobacteria

    Schulz, F.; Tyml, Tomáš; Pizzetti, I.; Dyková, I.; Fazi, S.; Kostka, Martin; Horn, M.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 5, 25 August (2015), č. článku 13381. ISSN 2045-2322 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GBP505/12/G112 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : free- living amebas * bacterial endosymbionts * phylogenetic inference * Paramecium caudatum * Naegleria * gene expression * environment * chlamydiae * diversity * pathogens Subject RIV: EG - Zoology Impact factor: 5.228, year: 2015

  6. Case Series of Naegleria fowleri Primary Ameobic Meningoencephalitis from Karachi, Pakistan.

    Ghanchi, Najia K; Jamil, Bushra; Khan, Erum; Ansar, Zeeshan; Samreen, Azra; Zafar, Afia; Hasan, Zahra

    2017-11-01

    Naegleria fowleri causes primary amoebic meningoencephalitis (PAM) which is almost always fatal. Naegleria fowleri is waterborne, and its infections are usually associated with aquatic activities but it can also be transmitted via the domestic water supply. An increasing number of N. fowleri cases have been reported from Pakistan. Improved methods for diagnosis are required. We report the utility of polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for the diagnosis of N. fowleri in patients suspected of PAM. One hundred and sixteen cases suspected of having PAM were examined. Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) specimens were tested at the Aga Khan University Hospital, Karachi. Nineteen CSF specimens were positive for N. fowleri using PCR. Naegleria fowleri positive patients had a median age of 28 years and were 84% male and 16% female. Overall, CSF wet preparation microscopy was performed in 85 (73%) cases and identified that seven specimens were positive for motile trophozoites. The CSF wet preparation results were available for 15 of the 19 N. fowleri PCR positive CSF samples; seven (40%) wet preparations were positive. Our data highlight the threat of N. fowleri infection as a cause of PAM. It also emphasizes the utility of the PCR-based diagnosis of the amoeba for early diagnosis and management of the disease.

  7. Exposure to synthetic greywater inhibits amoebae encystation and alters expression of Legionella pneumophila virulence genes

    Water conservation efforts have focused on greywater (GW) usage, especially for applications that do not require potable water quality. However, there is a need to better understand environmental pathogens and their free-living amoebae (FLA) hosts within GW. Using synthetic gre...

  8. Developmental diversity in free-living flatworms

    Martín-Durán José

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Flatworm embryology has attracted attention since the early beginnings of comparative evolutionary biology. Considered for a long time the most basal bilaterians, the Platyhelminthes (excluding Acoelomorpha are now robustly placed within the Spiralia. Despite having lost their relevance to explain the transition from radially to bilaterally symmetrical animals, the study of flatworm embryology is still of great importance to understand the diversification of bilaterians and of developmental mechanisms. Flatworms are acoelomate organisms generally with a simple centralized nervous system, a blind gut, and lacking a circulatory organ, a skeleton and a respiratory system other than the epidermis. Regeneration and asexual reproduction, based on a totipotent neoblast stem cell system, are broadly present among different groups of flatworms. While some more basally branching groups - such as polyclad flatworms - retain the ancestral quartet spiral cleavage pattern, most flatworms have significantly diverged from this pattern and exhibit unique strategies to specify the common adult body plan. Most free-living flatworms (i.e. Platyhelminthes excluding the parasitic Neodermata are directly developing, whereas in polyclads, also indirect developers with an intermediate free-living larval stage and subsequent metamorphosis are found. A comparative study of developmental diversity may help understanding major questions in evolutionary biology, such as the evolution of cleavage patterns, gastrulation and axial specification, the evolution of larval types, and the diversification and specialization of organ systems. In this review, we present a thorough overview of the embryonic development of the different groups of free-living (turbellarian platyhelminths, including the Catenulida, Macrostomorpha, Polycladida, Lecithoepitheliata, Proseriata, Bothrioplanida, Rhabdocoela, Fecampiida, Prolecithophora and Tricladida, and discuss their main features

  9. Monitoring for the Presence of Parasitic Protozoa and Free-living Amoebae in Drinking Water Plants

    Amany Saad Amer.

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Contamination of drinking water by microorganisms represents a major human health hazard in many parts of the world. The main objective of drinking water treatment is to provide microbiologically safe drinking water. The conventional drinking water treatment and disinfection has proved to be one of the major public health advances in modern times. A number of processes; namely water treatment, disinfection and changes influence the quality of drinking water delivered to the customer’s tap during transport of treated water via the distribution system. At least 325 water-associated outbreaks of parasitic protozoan disease have reported. In this study, drinking water from treatment plants evaluated for the presence of parasitic protozoa. Water samples collected from two main points: (a outlet of the water treatment plants (b distribution system at different distances from the water treatment plants. Protozoa were concentrated from each water sample by adsorption and accumulation on the nitrocellulose membrane filters (0.45 μm pore size and detected by conventional staining methods.

  10. Environmental Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis hosted by free-living amoebae

    Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis is responsible for paratuberculosis in animals. This disease, leading to an inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract, has a high impact on animal health and an important economic burden. The environmental life cycle of Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratube...

  11. Molecular Detection of Legionella spp. and their associations with Mycobacterium spp., Pseudomonas aeruginosa and amoeba hosts in a drinking water distribution system.

    Lu, J; Struewing, I; Vereen, E; Kirby, A E; Levy, K; Moe, C; Ashbolt, N

    2016-02-01

    This study investigated waterborne opportunistic pathogens (OPs) including potential hosts, and evaluated the use of Legionella spp. for indicating microbial water quality for OPs within a full-scale operating drinking water distribution system (DWDS). To investigate the occurrence of specific microbial pathogens within a major city DWDS we examined large volume (90 l drinking water) ultrafiltration (UF) concentrates collected from six sites between February, 2012 and June, 2013. The detection frequency and concentration estimates by qPCR were: Legionella spp. (57%/85 cell equivalent, CE l(-1) ), Mycobacterium spp. (88%/324 CE l(-1) ), Pseudomonas aeruginosa (24%/2 CE l(-1) ), Vermamoeba vermiformis (24%/2 CE l(-1) ) and Acanthamoeba spp. (42%/5 cyst equivalent, CE l(-1) ). There was no detection of the following microorganisms: human faecal indicator Bacteroides (HF183), Salmonella enterica, Campylobacter spp., Escherichia coli O157:H7, Giardia intestinalis, Cryptosporidium spp. or Naegleria fowleri. There were significant correlations between the qPCR signals of Legionella spp. and Mycobacterium spp., and their potential hosts V. vermiformis and Acanthamoeba spp. Sequencing of Legionella spp. demonstrated limited diversity, with most sequences coming from two dominant groups, of which the larger dominant group was an unidentified species. Other known species including Legionella pneumophila were detected, but at low frequency. The densities of Legionella spp. and Mycobacterium spp. were generally higher (17 and 324 folds, respectively) for distal sites relative to the entry point to the DWDS. Legionella spp. occurred, had significant growth and were strongly associated with free-living amoebae (FLA) and Mycobacterium spp., suggesting that Legionella spp. could provide a useful DWDS monitoring role to indicate potential conditions for non-faecal OPs. The results provide insight into microbial pathogen detection that may aid in the monitoring of microbial water

  12. Brain-Eating Amoebae: Predilection Sites in the Brain and Disease Outcome

    Ong, Timothy Yu Yee; Siddiqui, Ruqaiyyah

    2017-01-01

    ABSTRACT Acanthamoeba spp. and Balamuthia mandrillaris are causative agents of granulomatous amoebic encephalitis (GAE), while Naegleria fowleri causes primary amoebic meningoencephalitis (PAM). PAM is an acute infection that lasts a few days, while GAE is a chronic to subacute infection that can last up to several months. Here, we present a literature review of 86 case reports from 1968 to 2016, in order to explore the affinity of these amoebae for particular sites of the brain, diagnostic modalities, treatment options, and disease outcomes in a comparative manner. PMID:28404683

  13. Not all are free-living: high-throughput DNA metabarcoding reveals a diverse community of protists parasitizing soil metazoa.

    Geisen, S; Laros, I; Vizcaíno, A; Bonkowski, M; de Groot, G A

    2015-09-01

    Protists, the most diverse eukaryotes, are largely considered to be free-living bacterivores, but vast numbers of taxa are known to parasitize plants or animals. High-throughput sequencing (HTS) approaches now commonly replace cultivation-based approaches in studying soil protists, but insights into common biases associated with this method are limited to aquatic taxa and samples. We created a mock community of common free-living soil protists (amoebae, flagellates, ciliates), extracted DNA and amplified it in the presence of metazoan DNA using 454 HTS. We aimed at evaluating whether HTS quantitatively reveals true relative abundances of soil protists and at investigating whether the expected protist community structure is altered by the co-amplification of metazoan-associated protist taxa. Indeed, HTS revealed fundamentally different protist communities from those expected. Ciliate sequences were highly over-represented, while those of most amoebae and flagellates were under-represented or totally absent. These results underpin the biases introduced by HTS that prevent reliable quantitative estimations of free-living protist communities. Furthermore, we detected a wide range of nonadded protist taxa probably introduced along with metazoan DNA, which altered the protist community structure. Among those, 20 taxa most closely resembled parasitic, often pathogenic taxa. Therewith, we provide the first HTS data in support of classical observational studies that showed that potential protist parasites are hosted by soil metazoa. Taken together, profound differences in amplification success between protist taxa and an inevitable co-extraction of protist taxa parasitizing soil metazoa obscure the true diversity of free-living soil protist communities. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  14. Identification and Molecular Typing of Naegleria fowleri from a Patient of Primary Amebic Meningoencephalitis (PAM) in China.

    Zhang, Ling-Ling; Wu, Mao; Hu, Bang-Chuan; Chen, Hua-Liang; Pan, Jin-Ren; Ruan, Wei; Yao, Li-Nong

    2018-05-08

    Naegleria fowleri (N. fowleri) is the only Naegleria spp. known to cause an acute, fulminant, and rapidly fatal central nervous system infection called primary amebic meningoencephalitis (PAM) in human. In 2016, a suspected PAM patient was found in Zhejiang Province of China. The pathogen was identified by microscopic examination and PCR. The positive PCR products were sequenced and the sequences were aligned using NCBI BLAST programme. The homologous and phylogenetic analysis was conducted using the MEGA 6 programme. Under the microscopy, the motile cells with pseudopodia were observed in the direct smear, the motion characteristics of pseudopodia as well as the cell morphology suggested that the pathogen were amoeba trophozoites. The smears stained with Wright-Giemsa showed amoeba trophozoites with various sharps, which were measured of 10-25μm and characterized by the prominent, centrally placed nucleolus and the vacuolated cytoplasm. The PCR showed negative for E. histolytica and E. dispar, while positive for Naegleria spp.and N. fowleri. The nucleotide sequences acquired from this study were submitted to the Genbank with accession numbers of KX909928 and KX909927, respectively. The Blast analysis revealed that the sequences of KX909928 and KX909927 have 100% similarity with the sequence of N. fowleri gene (KT375442.1). Sequence alignment and phylogenetic tree reavealed that N. fowleri collected from this study was classified as genotype 2 and had a closest relative with N. lovaniensis. This study confirms N. fowleri as the agent responsible for this patient, however, PAM normally progresses fast and universally fatal within a week, so the patient still died at two weeks after the onset of symptoms. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  15. Free-living protozoa in the gastrointestinal tract and feces of pigs: Exploration of an unknown world and towards a protocol for the recovery of free-living protozoa.

    Chavatte, N; Lambrecht, E; Van Damme, I; Sabbe, K; Houf, K

    2016-07-30

    Associations with free-living protozoa (FLP) have been implicated in the persistence of foodborne pathogenic bacteria in food-related environments. To date however no information is available on the presence of FLP in the gastrointestinal tract (GIT) of pigs, which represents an important reservoir for zoonotic foodborne bacteria and hence a potential location for associations with FLP. This is at least partly due to the lack of adequate protocols to recover FLP from intestinal content and feces. In the present study different protocols to recover FLP from the porcine GIT and feces were tested. The most effective protocols were then applied to explore the presence of live FLP in the pig GIT and feces. A filtration based protocol was identified as the most suitable method to recover viable FLP from the porcine GIT and feces. Cultivable FLP were recovered from different parts of the GIT, suggesting at least a transient presence of FLP in this habitat. Free-living amoebae species (Acanthamoeba spp., Hyperamoeba sp., Vannella sp., Vermamoeba vermiformis, hartmannellids and vahlkampfiids) but also ciliates (Colpoda sp. and Tetrahymena/Glaucoma lookalike) and flagellates (cercomonads, bodonids and glissomonads) were recovered and cultured from pig intestinal content. Acanthamoeba hatchetti and Filamoeba sinensis were isolated for the first time from pig intestinal content. Despite high gastric acidity, non-cyst forming amoeba species were also detected which suggests survival of their trophozoites in the animal GIT. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Blood protozoa of free-living birds

    Herman, C.M.; McDiarmid, Archibald

    1969-01-01

    Blood protozoa were first reported from wild birds in 1884. Since then numerous surveys throughout the world have demonstrated their presence in a wide variety of hosts and localities with continuing designations of new species. Taxonomic determinations include parasites in the genera Plasmodium, Haemoproteus, Leucocytozoon, Babesia, Lankesterella and Trypanosoma. Transmission of Plasmodium by mosquitoes was demonstrated with a bird parasite before these insects were proven as vectors of human malaria. All the genera under consideration require an insect vector to complete their life-cycles and susceptible vectors have been demonstrated. Most experimental work on the blood protozoa of birds has been carried on with captive birds. An extensive volume of research has been conducted on Plasmodium because of its close similarity to malaria in man. Field studies that would provide information on the epizootiology of occurrence of these parasites in wild populations have been very limited, mainly confined to single blood film surveys. Such data are inadequate to provide an understanding of true prevalence or incidence or of factual knowledge of their impact on the wild population. Mechanisms for procuring such information are available in some cases and can be developed to fit other situations. Isodiagnosis, inoculation of blood from wild birds into susceptible captive hosts, has revealed a prevalence of over 60 % for Plasmodium in situations where microscope examination of single peripheral blood preparations yielded less than 1 %. Culture of bone marrow collected by biopsy demonstrates high prevalence of trypanosomes even when none are evident from microscopic examination of blood. Often preparations of tissues collected at necropsy reveal Leucocytozoon and Lankesterella when examination of peripheral blood gave no indication of infection. Methods developed by bird ringers provide techniques for obtaining repeat examinations of free-living birds that can yield further

  17. Effect of UV irradiation (253.7 nm) on free Legionella and Legionella associated with its amoebae hosts.

    Cervero-Aragó, Sílvia; Sommer, Regina; Araujo, Rosa M

    2014-12-15

    Water systems are the primary reservoir for Legionella spp., where the bacteria live in association with other microorganisms, such as free-living amoebae. A wide range of disinfection treatments have been studied to control and prevent Legionella colonization but few of them were performed considering its relation with protozoa. In this study, the effectiveness of UV irradiation (253.7 nm) using low-pressure lamps was investigated as a disinfection method for Legionella and amoebae under controlled laboratory conditions. UV treatments were applied to 5 strains of Legionella spp., 4 strains of free-living amoeba of the genera Acanthamoeba and Vermamoeba, treating separately trophozoites and cysts, and to two different co-cultures of Legionella pneumophila with the Acanthamoeba strains. No significant differences in the UV inactivation behavior were observed among Legionella strains tested which were 3 logs reduced for fluences around 45 J/m(2). UV irradiation was less effective against free-living amoebae; which in some cases required up to 990 J/m(2) to obtain the same population reduction. UV treatment was more effective against trophozoites compared to cysts; moreover, inactivation patterns were clearly different between the genus Acanthamoeba and Vermamoeba. For the first time data about Vermamoeba vermiformis UV inactivation has been reported in a study. Finally, the results showed that the association of L. pneumophila with free-living amoebae decreases the effectiveness of UV irradiation against the bacteria in a range of 1.5-2 fold. That fact demonstrates that the relations established between different microorganisms in the water systems can modify the effectiveness of the UV treatments applied. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Fungi associated with free-living soil nematodes in Turkey

    Karabörklü Salih

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Free-living soil nematodes have successfully adapted world-wide to nearly all soil types from the highest to the lowest of elevations. In the current study, nematodes were isolated from soil samples and fungi associated with these free-living soil nematodes were determined. Large subunit (LSU rDNAs of nematode-associated fungi were amplified and sequenced to construct phylogenetic trees. Nematode-associated fungi were observed in six nematode strains belonging to Acrobeloides, Steinernema and Cephalobus genera in different habitats. Malassezia and Cladosporium fungal strains indicated an association with Acrobeloides and Cephalobus nematodes, while Alternaria strains demonstrated an association with the Steinernema strain. Interactions between fungi and free-living nematodes in soil are discussed. We suggest that nematodes act as vectors for fungi.

  19. Abundance, diversity and community composition of free-living protozoa on vegetable sprouts.

    Chavatte, N; Lambrecht, E; Van Damme, I; Sabbe, K; Houf, K

    2016-05-01

    Interactions with free-living protozoa (FLP) have been implicated in the persistence of pathogenic bacteria on food products. In order to assess the potential involvement of FLP in this contamination, detailed knowledge on their occurrence, abundance and diversity on food products is required. In the present study, enrichment and cultivation methods were used to inventory and quantify FLP on eight types of commercial vegetable sprouts (alfalfa, beetroot, cress, green pea, leek, mung bean, red cabbage and rosabi). In parallel, total aerobic bacteria and Escherichia coli counts were performed. The vegetable sprouts harbored diverse communities of FLP, with Tetrahymena (ciliate), Bodo saltans and cercomonads (flagellates), and Acanthamoeba and Vannella (amoebae) as the dominant taxa. Protozoan community composition and abundance significantly differed between the sprout types. Beetroot harbored the most abundant and diverse FLP communities, with many unique species such as Korotnevella sp., Vannella sp., Chilodonella sp., Podophrya sp. and Sphaerophrya sp. In contrast, mung bean sprouts were species-poor and had low FLP numbers. Sampling month and company had no significant influence, suggesting that seasonal and local factors are of minor importance. Likewise, no significant relationship between protozoan community composition and bacterial load was observed. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Origin and diversity of testate amoebae shell composition: Example of Bullinularia indica living in Sphagnum capillifolium.

    Delaine, Maxence; Bernard, Nadine; Gilbert, Daniel; Recourt, Philippe; Armynot du Châtelet, Eric

    2017-06-01

    Testate amoebae are free-living shelled protists that build a wide range of shells with various sizes, shapes, and compositions. Recent studies showed that xenosomic testate amoebae shells could be indicators of atmospheric particulate matter (PM) deposition. However, no study has yet been conducted to assess the intra-specific mineral, organic, and biologic grain diversity of a single xenosomic species in a natural undisturbed environment. This study aims at providing new information about grain selection to develop the potential use of xenosomic testate amoebae shells as bioindicators of the multiple-origin mineral/organic diversity of their proximal environment. To fulfil these objectives, we analysed the shell content of 38 Bullinularia indica individuals, a single xenosomic testate amoeba species living in Sphagnum capillifolium, by scanning electron microscope (SEM) coupled with X-ray spectroscopy. The shells exhibited high diversities of mineral, organic, and biomineral grains, which confirms their capability to recycle xenosomes. Mineral grain diversity and size of B. indica matched those of the atmospheric natural mineral PM deposited in the peatbog. Calculation of grain size sorting revealed a discrete selection of grains agglutinated by B. indica. These results are a first step towards understanding the mechanisms of particle selection by xenosomic testate amoebae in natural conditions. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  1. Free-living Marine Nematodes. Part 1 British Enoplids

    This is the first of three volumes dealing with the most abundant group of animals on the sea-bed and sea-shore, the free-living marine nematodes, and is devoted to those marine nematodes belonging to the subclass Enoplia. Separate volumes will deal with the orders Chromadorida and. Monhysterida. To most marine ...

  2. Telomere shortening and survival in free-living corvids

    Salomons, H.M.; Mulder, G.A.; Zande, L. van de; Haussmann, M.F.; Linskens, M.H.K.; Verhulst, S.

    2009-01-01

    Evidence accumulates that telomere shortening reflects lifestyle and predicts remaining lifespan, but little is known of telomere dynamics and their relation to survival under natural conditions. We present longitudinal telomere data in free-living jackdaws (Corvus monedula) and test hypotheses on

  3. In Vitro Efficacy of Ebselen and BAY 11-7082 Against Naegleria fowleri

    Anjan Debnath

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Primary amebic meningoencephalitis (PAM is a fatal infection caused by the free-living ameba Naegleria fowleri, popularly known as the “brain-eating ameba.” The drugs of choice in treating PAM are the antifungal amphotericin B and an antileishmanial miltefosine, but these are not FDA-approved for this indication and use of amphotericin B is associated with severe adverse effects. Moreover, very few patients treated with the combination therapy have survived PAM. Therefore, development of efficient drugs is a critical unmet need to avert future deaths of children. Since N. fowleri causes extensive inflammation in the brain it is important to select compounds that can enter brain to kill ameba. In this study, we identified two central nervous system (CNS active compounds, ebselen and BAY 11-7082 as amebicidal with EC50 of 6.2 and 1.6 μM, respectively. The closely related BAY 11-7085 was also found active against N. fowleri with EC50 similar to BAY 11-7082. We synthesized a soluble ebselen analog, which had amebicidal activity similar to ebselen. Transmission electron microscopy of N. fowleri trophozoites incubated for 48 h with EC50 concentration of ebselen showed alteration in the cytoplasmic membrane, loss of the nuclear membrane, and appearance of electron-dense granules. Incubation of N. fowleri trophozoites with EC50 concentrations of BAY 11-7082 and BAY 11-7085 for 48 h showed the presence of large lipid droplets in the cytoplasm, disruption of cytoplasmic and nuclear membranes and appearance of several vesicles and chromatin residues. Blood-brain barrier permeable amebicidal compounds have potential as new drug leads for Naegleria infection.

  4. In Vitro Efficacy of Ebselen and BAY 11-7082 Against Naegleria fowleri.

    Debnath, Anjan; Nelson, Andrew T; Silva-Olivares, Angélica; Shibayama, Mineko; Siegel, Dionicio; McKerrow, James H

    2018-01-01

    Primary amebic meningoencephalitis (PAM) is a fatal infection caused by the free-living ameba Naegleria fowleri , popularly known as the "brain-eating ameba." The drugs of choice in treating PAM are the antifungal amphotericin B and an antileishmanial miltefosine, but these are not FDA-approved for this indication and use of amphotericin B is associated with severe adverse effects. Moreover, very few patients treated with the combination therapy have survived PAM. Therefore, development of efficient drugs is a critical unmet need to avert future deaths of children. Since N. fowleri causes extensive inflammation in the brain it is important to select compounds that can enter brain to kill ameba. In this study, we identified two central nervous system (CNS) active compounds, ebselen and BAY 11-7082 as amebicidal with EC 50 of 6.2 and 1.6 μM, respectively. The closely related BAY 11-7085 was also found active against N. fowleri with EC 50 similar to BAY 11-7082. We synthesized a soluble ebselen analog, which had amebicidal activity similar to ebselen. Transmission electron microscopy of N. fowleri trophozoites incubated for 48 h with EC 50 concentration of ebselen showed alteration in the cytoplasmic membrane, loss of the nuclear membrane, and appearance of electron-dense granules. Incubation of N. fowleri trophozoites with EC 50 concentrations of BAY 11-7082 and BAY 11-7085 for 48 h showed the presence of large lipid droplets in the cytoplasm, disruption of cytoplasmic and nuclear membranes and appearance of several vesicles and chromatin residues. Blood-brain barrier permeable amebicidal compounds have potential as new drug leads for Naegleria infection.

  5. Morphological characteristics of developmental stages of Acanthamoeba and Naegleria species before and after staining by various techniques.

    Ithoi, Init; Ahmad, Arine-Fadzlun; Mak, J W; Nissapatorn, Veeranoot; Lau, Yee-Ling; Mahmud, Rohela

    2011-11-01

    Seven stains were studied to determine the best color and contrast for staining the developmental stages of free living pathogenic Acanthamoeba and Naegleria species. The acid-fast bacilli stain (AFB) produced a blue color without contrast; trichrome-eosin and modified Field's showed various color contrasts; Giemsa, iron-hematoxylin, modified AFB and Gram produced only one color which distinguished the nucleus, nucleolus, cytoplasm, food- and water-vacuoles. The motile organs (acanthopodia, pseudopodia, lobopodia and flagella) were also clearly differentiated but produced a similar color as the cytoplasm. These motile organelles were first induced by incubating at 37 degrees C for at least 15 minutes and then fixing with methanol in order to preserve the protruding morphology prior to staining. The trichrome-eosin and iron-hematoxylin stains showed good color contrast for detecting all three stages, the trophozoite, cyst and flagellate; Giemsa and Gram stained the trophozoite and flagellate stages; the modified Field's and modified AFB stains stained only the trophozoite stage. Depending on the purpose, all these stains (except the AFB stain) can be used to identify the developmental stages of Acanthamoeba and Naegleria for clinical, epidemiological or public health use.

  6. Heterolobosean amoebae from Arctic and Antarctic extremes: 18 novel strains of Allovahlkampfia, Vahlkampfia and Naegleria

    Tyml, Tomáš; Skulinová, K.; Kavan, J.; Ditrich, O.; Kostka, M.; Dyková, I.

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 56, October (2016), s. 119-133 ISSN 0932-4739 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GBP505/12/G112 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : Arctic * Antarctic * Heterolobosea * Molecular taxonomy * Tetramitia Subject RIV: GJ - Animal Vermins ; Diseases, Veterinary Medicine Impact factor: 2.581, year: 2016

  7. Your Garden Hose: A potential health risk due to Legionella spp. growth facilitated by free-living amoebae

    Common garden hoses may generate aerosols of inhalable size (Legionella bacteria, Legionnaires' disease or Pontiac fever may result. Noting clinical cases have been linked to garden hose use. The hose environment is ideal ...

  8. Elimination of Naegleria fowleri from bulk water and biofilm in an operational drinking water distribution system.

    Miller, Haylea C; Morgan, Matthew J; Wylie, Jason T; Kaksonen, Anna H; Sutton, David; Braun, Kalan; Puzon, Geoffrey J

    2017-03-01

    Global incidence of primary amoebic meningoencephalitis cases associated with domestic drinking water is increasing. The need for understanding disinfectant regimes capable of eliminating the causative microorganism, Naegleria fowleri, from bulk water and pipe wall biofilms is critical. This field study demonstrated the successful elimination of N. fowleri from the bulk water and pipe wall biofilm of a persistently colonised operational drinking water distribution system (DWDS), and the prevention of further re-colonisation. A new chlorination unit was installed along the pipe line to boost the free chlorine residual to combat the persistence of N. fowleri. Biofilm and bulk water were monitored prior to and after re-chlorination (RCl), pre-rechlorination (pre-RCl) and post-rechlorination (post-RCl), respectively, for one year. A constant free chlorine concentration of > 1 mg/L resulted in the elimination of N. fowleri from both the bulk water and biofilm at the post-RCl site. Other amoeba species were detected during the first two months of chlorination, but all amoebae were eliminated from both the bulk water and biofilm at post-RCl after 60 days of chlorination with free chlorine concentrations > 1 mg/L. In addition, a dynamic change in the biofilm community composition and a four log reduction in biofilm cell density occurred post-RCl. The pre-RCl site continued to be seasonally colonised by N. fowleri, but the constant free chlorine residual of > 1 mg/L prevented N. fowleri from recolonising the bulk and pipe wall biofilm at the post-RCl site. To our knowledge, this is the first study to demonstrate successful removal of N. fowleri from both the bulk and pipe wall biofilm and prevention of re-colonisation of N. fowleri in an operational DWDS. The findings of this study are of importance to water utilities in addressing the presence of N. fowleri and other amoeba in susceptible DWDSs. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Resting eggs in free living marine and estuarine copepods

    Holm, Mark Wejlemann; Kiørboe, Thomas; Brun, Philipp Georg

    2018-01-01

    Marine free living copepods can survive harsh periods and cope with seasonal fluctuations in environmental conditions using resting eggs (embryonic dormancy). Laboratory experiments show that temperature is the common driver for resting egg production. Hence, we hypothesize (i) that seasonal...... temperature variation, rather than variation in food abundance is the main driver for the occurrence of the resting eggs strategy in marine and estuarine copepod species; and (ii) that the thermal boundaries of the distribution determine where resting eggs are produced and whether they are produced to cope...... with warm or cold periods. We compile literature information on the occurrence of resting egg production and relate this to spatio-temporal patterns in sea surface temperature and chlorophyll a concentration obtained from satellite observations. We find that the production of resting eggs has been reported...

  10. Spontaneous magnetic alignment behaviour in free-living lizards

    Diego-Rasilla, Francisco J.; Pérez-Mellado, Valentín; Pérez-Cembranos, Ana

    2017-04-01

    Several species of vertebrates exhibit spontaneous longitudinal body axis alignment relative to the Earth's magnetic field (i.e., magnetic alignment) while they are performing different behavioural tasks. Since magnetoreception is still not fully understood, studying magnetic alignment provides evidence for magnetoreception and broadens current knowledge of magnetic sense in animals. Furthermore, magnetic alignment widens the roles of magnetic sensitivity in animals and may contribute to shed new light on magnetoreception. In this context, spontaneous alignment in two species of lacertid lizards ( Podarcis muralis and Podarcis lilfordi) during basking periods was monitored. Alignments in 255 P. muralis and 456 P. lilfordi were measured over a 5-year period. The possible influence of the sun's position (i.e., altitude and azimuth) and geomagnetic field values corresponding to the moment in which a particular lizard was observed on lizards' body axis orientation was evaluated. Both species exhibited a highly significant bimodal orientation along the north-northeast and south-southwest magnetic axis. The evidence from this study suggests that free-living lacertid lizards exhibit magnetic alignment behaviour, since their body alignments cannot be explained by an effect of the sun's position. On the contrary, lizard orientations were significantly correlated with geomagnetic field values at the time of each observation. We suggest that this behaviour might provide lizards with a constant directional reference while they are sun basking. This directional reference might improve their mental map of space to accomplish efficient escape behaviour. This study is the first to provide spontaneous magnetic alignment behaviour in free-living reptiles.

  11. In silico ionomics segregates parasitic from free-living eukaryotes.

    Greganova, Eva; Steinmann, Michael; Mäser, Pascal; Fankhauser, Niklaus

    2013-01-01

    Ion transporters are fundamental to life. Due to their ancient origin and conservation in sequence, ion transporters are also particularly well suited for comparative genomics of distantly related species. Here, we perform genome-wide ion transporter profiling as a basis for comparative genomics of eukaryotes. From a given predicted proteome, we identify all bona fide ion channels, ion porters, and ion pumps. Concentrating on unicellular eukaryotes (n = 37), we demonstrate that clustering of species according to their repertoire of ion transporters segregates obligate endoparasites (n = 23) on the one hand, from free-living species and facultative parasites (n = 14) on the other hand. This surprising finding indicates strong convergent evolution of the parasites regarding the acquisition and homeostasis of inorganic ions. Random forest classification identifies transporters of ammonia, plus transporters of iron and other transition metals, as the most informative for distinguishing the obligate parasites. Thus, in silico ionomics further underscores the importance of iron in infection biology and suggests access to host sources of nitrogen and transition metals to be selective forces in the evolution of parasitism. This finding is in agreement with the phenomenon of iron withholding as a primordial antimicrobial strategy of infected mammals.

  12. Light pollution disrupts sleep in free-living animals.

    Raap, Thomas; Pinxten, Rianne; Eens, Marcel

    2015-09-04

    Artificial lighting can alter individual behaviour, with often drastic and potentially negative effects on biological rhythms, daily activity and reproduction. Whether this is caused by a disruption of sleep, an important widespread behaviour enabling animals to recover from daily stress, is unclear. We tested the hypothesis that light pollution disrupts sleep by recording individual sleep behaviour of great tits, Parus major, that were roosting in dark nest-boxes and were exposed to light-emitting diode light the following night. Their behaviour was compared to that of control birds sleeping in dark nest-boxes on both nights. Artificial lighting caused experimental birds to wake up earlier, sleep less (-5%) and spent less time in the nest-box as they left their nest-box earlier in the morning. Experimental birds did not enter the nest-box or fall asleep later than controls. Although individuals in lit nest-boxes did not wake up more often nor decreased the length of their sleep bouts, females spent a greater proportion of the night awake. Our study provides the first direct proof that light pollution has a significant impact on sleep in free-living animals, in particular in the morning, and highlights a mechanism for potential effects of light pollution on fitness.

  13. Bioaccumulation of pathogenic bacteria and amoeba by zebra mussels and their presence in watercourses.

    Mosteo, R; Goñi, P; Miguel, N; Abadías, J; Valero, P; Ormad, M P

    2016-01-01

    Dreissena polymorpha (the zebra mussel) has been invading freshwater bodies in Europe since the beginning of the nineteenth century. Filter-feeding organisms can accumulate and concentrate both chemical and biological contaminants in their tissues. Therefore, zebra mussels are recognized as indicators of freshwater quality. In this work, the capacity of the zebra mussel to accumulate human pathogenic bacteria and protozoa has been evaluated and the sanitary risk associated with their presence in surface water has also been assessed. The results show a good correlation between the pathogenic bacteria concentration in zebra mussels and in watercourses. Zebra mussels could therefore be used as an indicator of biological contamination. The bacteria (Escherichia coli, Enterococcus spp., Pseudomonas spp., and Salmonella spp.) and parasites (Cryptosporidium oocysts and free-living amoebae) detected in these mussels reflect a potential sanitary risk in water.

  14. Free-living copepods of the Arabian Sea: Distributions and research perspectives

    Madhupratap, M.

    The subclass Copepoda consists of 10 orders and exhibit great diversity in morphology as well as the habitats they occupy. Within the orders themselves, there are sometimes overlaps-some are free living or could be parasitic. There are approximately...

  15. Abundance of Naegleria fowleri in roof-harvested rainwater tank samples from two continents.

    Waso, Monique; Dobrowsky, Penelope Heather; Hamilton, Kerry Ann; Puzon, Geoffrey; Miller, Haylea; Khan, Wesaal; Ahmed, Warish

    2018-02-01

    Roof-harvested rainwater (RHRW) has been used as an alternative source of water in water scarce regions of many countries. The microbiological and chemical quality of RHRW has been questioned due to the presence of bacterial and protozoan pathogens. However, information on the occurrence of pathogenic amoeba in RHRW tank samples is needed due to their health risk potential and known associations with opportunistic pathogens. Therefore, this study aims to determine the quantitative occurrence of Naegleria fowleri in RHRW tank samples from Southeast Queensland (SEQ), Australia (AU), and the Kleinmond Housing Scheme located in Kleinmond, South Africa (SA). In all, 134 and 80 RHRW tank samples were collected from SEQ, and the Kleinmond Housing Scheme, Western Cape, SA, respectively. Quantitative PCR (qPCR) assays were used to measure the concentrations of N. fowleri, and culture-based methods were used to measure fecal indicator bacteria (FIB) Escherichia coli (E. coli) and Enterococcus spp. Of the 134 tank water samples tested from AU, 69 and 62.7% were positive for E. coli, and Enterococcus spp., respectively. For the SA tank water samples, FIB analysis was conducted for samples SA-T41 to SA-T80 (n = 40). Of the 40 samples analyzed from SA, 95 and 35% were positive for E. coli and Enterococcus spp., respectively. Of the 134 water samples tested in AU, 15 (11.2%) water samples were positive for N. fowleri, and the concentrations ranged from 1.7 × 10 2 to 3.6 × 10 4 gene copies per 100 mL of water. Of the 80 SA tank water samples screened for N. fowleri, 15 (18.8%) tank water samples were positive for N. fowleri and the concentrations ranged from 2.1 × 10 1 to 7.8 × 10 4 gene copies per 100 mL of tank water. The prevalence of N. fowleri in RHRW tank samples from AU and SA thus warrants further development of dose-response models for N. fowleri and a quantitative microbial risk assessment (QMRA) to inform and prioritize strategies for reducing

  16. Old lineages in a new ecosystem: diversification of arcellinid amoebae (Amoebozoa and peatland mosses.

    Omar Fiz-Palacios

    Full Text Available Arcellinid testate amoebae (Amoebozoa form a group of free-living microbial eukaryotes with one of the oldest fossil records known, yet several aspects of their evolutionary history remain poorly understood. Arcellinids occur in a range of terrestrial, freshwater and even brackish habitats; however, many arcellinid morphospecies such as Hyalosphenia papilio are particularly abundant in Sphagnum-dominated peatlands, a relatively new ecosystem that appeared during the diversification of Sphagnum species in the Miocene (5-20 Myr ago. Here, we reconstruct divergence times in arcellinid testate amoebae after selecting several fossils for clock calibrations and then infer whether or not arcellinids followed a pattern of diversification that parallels the pattern described for Sphagnum. We found that the diversification of core arcellinids occurred during the Phanerozoic, which is congruent with most arcellinid fossils but not with the oldest known amoebozoan fossil (i.e. at ca. 662 or ca. 750 Myr. Overall, Sphagnum and the Hyalospheniidae exhibit different patterns of diversification. However, an extensive molecular phylogenetic analysis of distinct clades within H. papilio species complex demonstrated a correlation between the recent diversification of H. papilio, the recent diversification of Sphagnum mosses, and the establishment of peatlands.

  17. Detecting free-living steps and walking bouts: validating an algorithm for macro gait analysis.

    Hickey, Aodhán; Del Din, Silvia; Rochester, Lynn; Godfrey, Alan

    2017-01-01

    Research suggests wearables and not instrumented walkways are better suited to quantify gait outcomes in clinic and free-living environments, providing a more comprehensive overview of walking due to continuous monitoring. Numerous validation studies in controlled settings exist, but few have examined the validity of wearables and associated algorithms for identifying and quantifying step counts and walking bouts in uncontrolled (free-living) environments. Studies which have examined free-living step and bout count validity found limited agreement due to variations in walking speed, changing terrain or task. Here we present a gait segmentation algorithm to define free-living step count and walking bouts from an open-source, high-resolution, accelerometer-based wearable (AX3, Axivity). Ten healthy participants (20-33 years) wore two portable gait measurement systems; a wearable accelerometer on the lower-back and a wearable body-mounted camera (GoPro HERO) on the chest, for 1 h on two separate occasions (24 h apart) during free-living activities. Step count and walking bouts were derived for both measurement systems and compared. For all participants during a total of almost 20 h of uncontrolled and unscripted free-living activity data, excellent relative (rho  ⩾  0.941) and absolute (ICC (2,1)   ⩾  0.975) agreement with no presence of bias were identified for step count compared to the camera (gold standard reference). Walking bout identification showed excellent relative (rho  ⩾  0.909) and absolute agreement (ICC (2,1)   ⩾  0.941) but demonstrated significant bias. The algorithm employed for identifying and quantifying steps and bouts from a single wearable accelerometer worn on the lower-back has been demonstrated to be valid and could be used for pragmatic gait analysis in prolonged uncontrolled free-living environments.

  18. Intranasal Coadministration of the Cry1Ac Protoxin with Amoebal Lysates Increases Protection against Naegleria fowleri Meningoencephalitis

    Rojas-Hernández, Saúl; Rodríguez-Monroy, Marco A.; López-Revilla, Rubén; Reséndiz-Albor, Aldo A.; Moreno-Fierros, Leticia

    2004-01-01

    Cry1Ac protoxin has potent mucosal and systemic adjuvant effects on antibody responses to proteins or polysaccharides. In this work, we examined whether Cry1Ac increased protective immunity against fatal Naegleria fowleri infection in mice, which resembles human primary amoebic meningoencephalitis. Higher immunoglobulin G (IgG) than IgA anti-N. fowleri responses were elicited in the serum and tracheopulmonary fluids of mice immunized by the intranasal or intraperitoneal route with N. fowleri lysates either alone or with Cry1Ac or cholera toxin. Superior protection against a lethal challenge with 5 × 104 live N. fowleri trophozoites was achieved for immunization by the intranasal route. Intranasal immunization of N. fowleri lysates coadministered with Cry1Ac increased survival to 100%; interestingly, immunization with Cry1Ac alone conferred similar protection to that achieved with amoebal lysates alone (60%). When mice intranasally immunized with Cry1Ac plus lysates were challenged with amoebae, both IgG and IgA mucosal responses were rapidly increased, but only the increased IgG response persisted until day 60 in surviving mice. The brief rise in the level of specific mucosal IgA does not exclude the role that this isotype may play in the early defense against this parasite, since higher IgA responses were detected in nasal fluids of mice intranasally immunized with lysates plus either Cry1Ac or cholera toxin, which, indeed, were the treatments that provided the major protection levels. In contrast, serum antibody responses do not seem to be related to the protection level achieved. Both acquired and innate immune systems seem to play a role in host defense against N. fowleri infection, but further studies are required to elucidate the mechanisms involved in protective effects conferred by Cry1Ac, which may be a valuable tool to improve mucosal vaccines. PMID:15271892

  19. Comparison of serum hormone levels of captive and free-living maned wolves Chrysocyon brachyurus

    O.B. Maia

    2008-02-01

    Full Text Available Serum hormone levels were compared between captive and free-living maned wolves and seasonal variations of sex hormones were studied. Blood samples were collected from 16 male and 26 female adult animals from Brazilian zoos, and from 30 male and 24 female free-living adults to determine serum progesterone and testosterone by radioimmunoassay. Serum testosterone concentrations varied (P 0.05. Sixteen captive males showed higher testosterone concentration during winter and spring compared with 30 free-living animals (P < 0.05. Progesterone concentration varied among seasons in 26 captive females (P < 0.05, being higher in autumn (15.3 ± 3.1 ng/mL than in summer (6.6 ± 1.5 ng/mL, winter (5.3 ± 3.1 ng/mL and spring (4.3 ± 0.7 ng/mL. Progesterone concentration of 24 free-living females varied between autumn (17.1 ± 6.0 ng/mL and winter (1.7 ± 0.3 ng/mL (P < 0.05, but we could not obtain data for spring or summer. No difference in progesterone levels was observed between captive and free-living females in autumn and winter.

  20. Growth-supporting activity for Legionella pneumophila in tap water cultures and implication of hartmannellid amoebae as growth factors.

    Wadowsky, R M; Butler, L J; Cook, M K; Verma, S M; Paul, M A; Fields, B S; Keleti, G; Sykora, J L; Yee, R B

    1988-11-01

    Photosynthetic cyanobacteria, heterotrophic bacteria, free-living amoebae, and ciliated protozoa may support growth of Legionella pneumophila. Studies were done with two tap water cultures (WS1 and WS2) containing L. pneumophila and associated microbiota to characterize growth-supporting activity and assess the relative importance of the microbiota in supporting multiplication of L. pneumophila. The water cultures were incubated in the dark at 35 degrees C. The growth-supporting factor(s) was separated from each culture by filtration through 1-micron-pore-size membrane filters. The retentate was then suspended in sterile tap water. Multiplication of L. pneumophila occurred when both the retentate suspension and the filtrate from either culture were inoculated into sterile tap water. L. pneumophila did not multiply in tap water inoculated with only the filtrate, even though filtration did not reduce the concentration of L. pneumophila or heterotrophic bacteria in either culture. Growth-supporting activity of the retentate suspension from WS1 was inactivated at 60 degrees C but unaffected at 0, 25, and 45 degrees C after 30-min incubations. Filtration experiments indicated that the growth-supporting factor(s) in WS1 was 2 to 5 micron in diameter. Ciliated protozoa were not detected in either culture. Hartmannellid amoebae were conclusively demonstrated in WS2 but not in WS1. L. pneumophila multiplied in tap water inoculated with the amoebae (10(3)/ml) and the 1-micron filtrate of WS2. No multiplication occurred in tap water inoculated with the filtrate only. Growth-supporting activity for L. pneumophila may be present in plumbing systems; hartmannellid amoebae appear to be important determinants of multiplication of L. pneumophila in some tap water cultures.

  1. Functional ecology of free-living nitrogen fixation: A contemporary perspective

    Reed, Sasha C.; Cleveland, Cory C.; Townsend, Alan R.

    2011-01-01

    Nitrogen (N) availability is thought to frequently limit terrestrial ecosystem processes, and explicit consideration of N biogeochemistry, including biological N2 fixation, is central to understanding ecosystem responses to environmental change. Yet, the importance of free-living N2 fixation—a process that occurs on a wide variety of substrates, is nearly ubiquitous in terrestrial ecosystems, and may often represent the dominant pathway for acquiring newly available N—is often underappreciated. Here, we draw from studies that investigate free-living N2 fixation from functional, physiological, genetic, and ecological perspectives. We show that recent research and analytical advances have generated a wealth of new information that provides novel insight into the ecology of N2 fixation as well as raises new questions and priorities for future work. These priorities include a need to better integrate free-living N2 fixation into conceptual and analytical evaluations of the N cycle's role in a variety of global change scenarios.

  2. Microscopic isolation and characterization of free living amoebae (FLA from surface water sources.in Birjand, the capital city of the South Khorasan

    Mahmoodreza Behravan

    2015-07-01

    Conclusion: The results indicated that a significant percentage of surface water sources in Birjand city was contaminated with Acanthamoeba spp. It is necessary for physicians, therefore, to take into account the diseases caused by these infectious agents. Besides, local regional health professionals should take into consideration the potential role of surface stagnant water sources in transferring these infectious agents. Placing warning signs in areas contaminated with these infectious agents seems a useful measure.

  3. An outbreak of Newcastle disease in free-living pheasants (Phasianus colchicus)

    Jørgensen, Poul Henrik; Handberg, Kurt; Ahrens, Peter

    1999-01-01

    The epidemiology of an outbreak of Newcastle disease in a population of approximately 12 000 free-living pheasants (Phasianus colchicus) on the island of Faeno in Denmark in 1996 is described. The mortality epizootic demonstrated over an observation period of 3 weeks. A total of 70 avian paramyxo...... to the pheasants by feral birds....

  4. The behavioral development of free-living chimpanzee babies and infants

    Plooij, Fransiscus Xaverius

    1980-01-01

    This study aims to achieve an ontogenetically oriented understanding of behavioural phenomena during early development (first 2 years) of free-living chimpanzees. For this purpose, six chimpanzee babies and infants were observed in the Gombe National Park, Tanzania. The main question which dominates

  5. ENERGY BUDGETS IN FREE-LIVING GREEN IGUANAS IN A SEASONAL ENVIRONMENT

    LICHTENBELT, WDV; WESSELINGH, RA; VOGEL, JT; ALBERS, KBM

    Using a variety of techniques we estimated energy expenditure and allocation of energy in free-living green iguanas (Iguana iguana) in a seasonal environment on Curacao, Netherlands Antilles. 1) Daily energy expenditure (DEE) was measured by means of the doubly labeled water (DLW) technique, using

  6. The life cycle of the free-living marine nematode Innocuonema tentabunda De Man 1890

    Singh, R.; Ingole, B.S.; Nanajkar, M.R.

    The free-living marine nematode Innocuonema tentabunda was collected from the mangrove sediment of a mud-flat at Chorao Island, Goa, India, and reared in the laboratory to investigate its life cycle at 27 plus or minus 2 degrees C. The nematodes...

  7. Endosymbiotic heterocystous cyanobacteria synthesize different heterocyst glycolipids than free-living heterocystous cyanobacteria

    Schouten, S.; Villareal, T.A.; Hopmans, E.C.; Mets, A.; Swanson, K.M.; Sinninghe Damsté, J.S.

    2013-01-01

    The heterocysts of limnetic nitrogen-fixing filamentous cyanobacteria contain unique glycolipids in their cell wall that create the distinctive gas impermeability of the heterocyst cell wall as well as serve as biomarker lipids for these microbes. It has been assumed that marine free-living and

  8. No nocturnal energetic savings in response to hard work in free-living great tits

    Wiersma, P; Tinbergen, JM

    We measured energy expenditure in free-living great tits (Pares major) during the active (day) and the inactive period (night) with the aim of determining whether great tits compensate for energy costs made during periods of high activity in periods of low activity. If such compensation occurs,

  9. Comparison of Yamax pedometer and GT3X accelerometer steps in a free-living sample

    Our objective was to compare steps detected by the Yamax pedometer (PEDO) versus the GT3X accelerometer (ACCEL) in free-living adults. Daily PEDO and ACCEL steps were collected from a sample of 23 overweight and obese participants (18 females; mean +/- sd: age = 52.6 +/- 8.4 yr.; body mass index = 3...

  10. Restless roosts : Light pollution affects behavior, sleep, and physiology in a free-living songbird

    Ouyang, Jenny Q; de Jong, Maaike; van Grunsven, Roy H A; Matson, Kevin D; Haussmann, Mark F; Meerlo, Peter; Visser, Marcel E; Spoelstra, Kamiel

    The natural nighttime environment is increasingly polluted by artificial light. Several studies have linked artificial light at night to negative impacts on human health. In free-living animals, light pollution is associated with changes in circadian, reproductive, and social behavior, but whether

  11. Restless roosts: Light pollution affects behavior, sleep, and physiology in a free-living songbird

    Ouyang, Jenny Q.; de Jong, Maaike; van Grunsven, Roy H. A.; Matson, Kevin D.; Haussmann, Mark F.; Meerlo, Peter; Visser, Marcel E.; Spoelstra, Kamiel

    2017-01-01

    The natural nighttime environment is increasingly polluted by artificial light. Several studies have linked artificial light at night to negative impacts on human health. In free-living animals, light pollution is associated with changes in circadian, reproductive, and social behavior, but whether

  12. Restless roosts : Light pollution affects behavior, sleep, and physiology in a free-living songbird

    Ouyang, Jenny Q; de Jong, Maaike; van Grunsven, Roy H A; Matson, Kevin D; Haussmann, Mark F; Meerlo, Peter; Visser, Marcel E; Spoelstra, Kamiel

    2017-01-01

    The natural nighttime environment is increasingly polluted by artificial light. Several studies have linked artificial light at night to negative impacts on human health. In free-living animals, light pollution is associated with changes in circadian, reproductive, and social behavior, but whether

  13. A linear programming model of diet choice of free-living beavers

    Nolet, BA; VanderVeer, PJ; Evers, EGJ; Ottenheim, MM

    1995-01-01

    Linear programming has been remarkably successful in predicting the diet choice of generalist herbivores. We used this technique to test the diet choice of free-living beavers (Castor fiber) in the Biesbosch (The Netherlands) under different Foraging goals, i.e. maximization of intake of energy,

  14. Free-living protozoa in drinking water supplies: community composition and role as hosts for Legionella pneumophila

    Valster, R.M.

    2011-01-01

    Free-living protozoa in drinking water supplies: community composition and role as hosts for Legionella pneumophila Free-living protozoa, which feed on bacteria, play an important role in the communities of microorganisms and invertebrates in drinking water supplies and in (warm) tap water installations. Several bacteria, including opportunistic human pathogens such as Legionella pneumophila, are able to survive and replicate within protozoan hosts, and certain free-living protozoa are opp...

  15. Infection and Proliferation of Giant Viruses in Amoeba Cells.

    Takemura, Masaharu

    2016-01-01

    Acanthamoeba polyphaga mimivirus, the first discovered giant virus with genome size and particle size much larger than previously discovered viruses, possesses several genes for translation and CRISPER Cas system-like defense mechanism against virophages, which co-infect amoeba cells with the giant virus and which inhibit giant virus proliferation. Mimiviruses infect amoeba cells by phagocytosis and release their DNA into amoeba cytoplasm through their stargate structure. After infection, giant virion factories (VFs) form in amoeba cytoplasm, followed by DNA replication and particle formation at peripheral regions of VF. Marseilleviruses, the smallest giant viruses, infect amoeba cells by phagocytosis or endocytosis, form larger VF than Mimivirus's VF in amoeba cytoplasm, and replicate their particles. Pandoraviruses found in 2013 have the largest genome size and particle size among all viruses ever found. Pandoraviruses infect amoeba cells by phagocytosis and release their DNA into amoeba cytoplasm through their mouth-like apical pores. The proliferation of Pandoraviruses occurs along with nucleus disruption. New virions form at the periphery of the region formerly occupied by the amoeba cell nucleus.

  16. Revised Parameters for the AMOEBA Polarizable Atomic Multipole Water Model

    Pande, Vijay S.; Head-Gordon, Teresa; Ponder, Jay W.

    2016-01-01

    A set of improved parameters for the AMOEBA polarizable atomic multipole water model is developed. The protocol uses an automated procedure, ForceBalance, to adjust model parameters to enforce agreement with ab initio-derived results for water clusters and experimentally obtained data for a variety of liquid phase properties across a broad temperature range. The values reported here for the new AMOEBA14 water model represent a substantial improvement over the previous AMOEBA03 model. The new AMOEBA14 water model accurately predicts the temperature of maximum density and qualitatively matches the experimental density curve across temperatures ranging from 249 K to 373 K. Excellent agreement is observed for the AMOEBA14 model in comparison to a variety of experimental properties as a function of temperature, including the 2nd virial coefficient, enthalpy of vaporization, isothermal compressibility, thermal expansion coefficient and dielectric constant. The viscosity, self-diffusion constant and surface tension are also well reproduced. In comparison to high-level ab initio results for clusters of 2 to 20 water molecules, the AMOEBA14 model yields results similar to the AMOEBA03 and the direct polarization iAMOEBA models. With advances in computing power, calibration data, and optimization techniques, we recommend the use of the AMOEBA14 water model for future studies employing a polarizable water model. PMID:25683601

  17. Focal palatine erosion in captive and free-living cheetahs (Acinonyx jubatus) and other felid species.

    Zordan, Martýn; Deem, Sharon L; Sanchez, Carlos R

    2012-01-01

    We examined 1,092 skulls of captive and free-living individuals, representing 33 felid species, to determine the prevalence of focal palatine erosion (FPE). FPE was detected in 3.2% of cats evaluated, including cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus) and 14 other felid species. The prevalence of FPE between cheetah (9.4%; n = 64) and non-cheetah species (2.8%; n = 1,028) (χ(2) test; P = 0.004) and between captive (5.7%; n = 246) and free-living (2.4%; n = 824) individuals (χ(2) test; P = 0.010) were significantly different, with prevalence between captive (19%; n = 21) and free-living (2.9%; n = 34) cheetahs approaching significance (Fisher's exact test; P = 0.064). FPE was diagnosed with equal prevalence in skulls from individuals in which the lower molars did not meet the palatine bone (60.6%) and individuals in which it did (39.4%; n = 33) (χ(2) test; P = 0.139). In cheetahs with FPE, one was a captive animal in Germany, one a free-living cheetah from Mali, one captive cheetah from Kenya, and three captive cheetahs of unknown origin. Additionally, we evaluated the medical records of 49 captive cheetahs in Namibia. Of these cheetahs, 48 (98.0%) had clinical signs consistent with FPE, although only 16 of these 48 (39.6%) had perforation of the palatine bone. Based on physical examinations, FPE was diagnosed in two caracals (Caracal caracal) and one fishing cat (Prionailurus viverrinus) from a North American Zoo. Results from this study confirm FPE in cheetahs outside of Namibia, in a minimum of 15 felid species, and a higher FPE prevalence in captive individuals than free-living ones. Clinical implications of these findings and recommendations for future studies are provided. © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  18. Improved Method for the Detection and Quantification of Naegleria fowleri in Water and Sediment Using Immunomagnetic Separation and Real-Time PCR

    Bonnie J. Mull

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Primary amebic meningoencephalitis (PAM is a rare and typically fatal infection caused by the thermophilic free-living ameba, Naegleria fowleri. In 2010, the first confirmed case of PAM acquired in Minnesota highlighted the need for improved detection and quantification methods in order to study the changing ecology of N. fowleri and to evaluate potential risk factors for increased exposure. An immunomagnetic separation (IMS procedure and real-time PCR TaqMan assay were developed to recover and quantify N. fowleri in water and sediment samples. When one liter of lake water was seeded with N. fowleri strain CDC:V212, the method had an average recovery of 46% and detection limit of 14 amebas per liter of water. The method was then applied to sediment and water samples with unknown N. fowleri concentrations, resulting in positive direct detections by real-time PCR in 3 out of 16 samples and confirmation of N. fowleri culture in 6 of 16 samples. This study has resulted in a new method for detection and quantification of N. fowleri in water and sediment that should be a useful tool to facilitate studies of the physical, chemical, and biological factors associated with the presence and dynamics of N. fowleri in environmental systems.

  19. Free-living protozoa in drinking water supplies: community composition and role as hosts for Legionella pneumophila

    Valster, R.M.

    2011-01-01

    Free-living protozoa in drinking water supplies: community composition and role as hosts for Legionella pneumophila


    Free-living protozoa, which feed on bacteria, play an important role in the communities of microorganisms and invertebrates in drinking water supplies and in (warm)

  20. Amoeba: a distributed operating system for the 1990s

    Mullender, Sape J.; van Rossum, Guido; Tanenbaum, Andrew S.; van Renesse, Robbert; van Staveren, Hans

    A description is given of the Amoeba distributed operating system, which appears to users as a centralized system but has the speed, fault tolerance, security safeguards, and flexibility required for the 1990s. The Amoeba software is based on objects. Objects are managed by server processes and

  1. Culture growth of testate amoebae under different silicon concentrations.

    Wanner, Manfred; Seidl-Lampa, Barbara; Höhn, Axel; Puppe, Daniel; Meisterfeld, Ralf; Sommer, Michael

    2016-10-01

    Testate amoebae with self-secreted siliceous shell platelets ("idiosomes") play an important role in terrestrial silicon (Si) cycles. In this context, Si-dependent culture growth dynamics of idiosomic testate amoebae are of interest. Clonal cultures of idiosomic testate amoebae were analyzed under three different Si concentrations: low (50μmolL -1 ), moderate/site-specific (150μmolL -1 ) and high Si supply (500μmolL -1 ). Food (Saccharomyces cerevisiae) was provided in surplus. (i) Shell size of four different clones of idiosomic testate amoebae either decreased (Trinema galeata, Euglypha filifera cf.), increased (E. rotunda cf.), or did not change (E. rotunda) under the lowest Si concentration (50μmolSiL -1 ). (ii) Culture growth of idiosomic Euglypha rotunda was dependent on Si concentration. The more Si available in the culture medium, the earlier the entry into exponential growth phase. (iii) Culture growth of idiosomic Euglypha rotunda was dependent on origin of inoculum. Amoebae previously cultured under a moderate Si concentration revealed highest sustainability in consecutive cultures. Amoebae derived from cultures with high Si concentrations showed rapid culture growth which finished early in consecutive cultures. (iv) Si (diluted in the culture medium) was absorbed by amoebae and fixed in the amoeba shells resulting in decreased Si concentrations. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  2. Amoeba: A Distributed Operating System for the 1990s

    Mullender, S.J.; van Rossum, G.; Tanenbaum, A.S.; van Renesse, R.; van Staveren, H.

    1990-01-01

    A description is given of the Amoeba distributed operating system, which appears to users as a centralized system but has the speed, fault tolerance, security safeguards, and flexibility required for the 1990s. The Amoeba software is based on objects. Objects are managed by server processes and

  3. A natural fast-cleaving branching ribozyme from the amoeboflagellate Naegleria pringsheimi

    Tang, Yunjia; Nielsen, Henrik; Birgisdottir, Asa Birna

    2011-01-01

    The GIR1 branching ribozyme constitutes a separate class of naturally occurring ribozymes. Most studies have been performed with the single GIR1 known from the myxomycete Didymium iridis whereas the large number of GIR1s found in the amoeboflagellate Naegleria has remained largely uncharacterized....... Here, we investigate ribozyme cleavage properties of a collection of Naegleria GIR1 ribozymes and define the variant from N. pringsheimi as a suitable model due to its superior activity in vitro. We identify the minimal ribozyme by deletion analysis applying a new RNase R based assay for the branching...

  4. Public health concerns associated with care of free-living birds.

    Whittington, Julia K

    2011-09-01

    Free-living birds are not only susceptible to certain infectious diseases; wild bird populations serve as reservoirs of several important diseases of public health concern. Bacterial and viral diseases endemic in populations of free-living birds such as tuberculosis, avian influenza, arboviral infections, and enteropathogens have been classified as emerging or reemerging. Providing care to wild avian patients increases the opportunity for direct contact with infected birds and the possibility of transmission of infectious disease to human handlers. Awareness of disease potential is critical to disease monitoring of wild populations and will allow for the implementation of precautionary measures when working with wild avian species. Biosecurity measures designed to minimize risk must be evaluated by individual facilities.

  5. Microbiological diagnosis and antimicrobial sensitivity profiles in diseased free-living raptors.

    Vidal, Anna; Baldomà, Laia; Molina-López, Rafael A; Martin, Marga; Darwich, Laila

    2017-08-01

    Free-living raptors (birds of prey) can act as reservoirs of potentially zoonotic agents, but they also can be affected by microorganisms as target hosts. In this retrospective study, microbiological results (n = 663) and antibiotic sensitivity profiles (n = 108) of bacterial isolates were analysed from diseased free-living raptors. Sixty-nine percent of cases (n = 457) yielded bacteria: 58% were in pure culture and 42% were of different species. Remarkably, samples from necropsies (47%) had higher percentage of pure isolations than those obtained from clinical (31%) samples (P raptors (P 3 antimicrobials. Detection in wildlife of antimicrobial-resistant pathogens that might be significant at the animal-human-ecosystem interface is of great relevance under the 'One Health' approach.

  6. Distribution of free-living and particle-attached aerobic anoxygenic phototrophic bacteria in marine environments

    Lami, R.; Čuperová, Zuzana; Ras, J.; Lebaron, P.; Koblížek, Michal

    2009-01-01

    Roč. 55, č. 1 (2009), s. 31-38 ISSN 0948-3055 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA206/07/0241; GA AV ČR 1QS500200570 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50200510 Keywords : AAP bacteria * photoheterotrophy * free-living bacteria Subject RIV: EE - Microbiology, Virology Impact factor: 1.743, year: 2009

  7. The sandy beach meiofauna and free-living nematodes from De Panne (Belgium)

    Gheskiere, T.; Hoste, E.; Kotwicki, L.; Degraer, S.; Vanaverbeke, J.; Vincx, M.

    2002-01-01

    Despite their rather barren and arid appearance, European sandy beaches harbour a highly diverse fauna and flora and some of them are even highly productive. In contrast to tropical sandy beaches little is known about the structural and functional diversity of the different benthic components. This study aims to investigate the structural diversity of the meiobenthos, emphasizing on free-living marine nematodes on a Belgian sandy beach.The samples were collected on the sandy beach of De Panne...

  8. Plate waste of adults in the United States measured in free-living conditions.

    Brian E Roe

    Full Text Available We analyze food-item level data collected from 50 adults from the United States using the Remote Food Photography Method® to provide the first estimates of plate waste gathered from adults across multiple consecutive meals and days in free-living conditions, and during laboratory-based meals with fixed food items and quantities. We find average plate waste in free-living conditions is 5.6 grams (7.7 kcals per item and that 3.3% of all food selected is returned as plate waste, where the percent waste figure is substantially lower than previously published plate waste estimates gathered primarily from dine-out settings in the United States such as buffets and institutional settings with limited-choice meals (e.g., school cafeterias. Plate waste from the same participants during the laboratory-based meals is significantly higher with an average of 203.2 grams of solid plate waste per meal (531.3 kcals or 39.1% of the food provided, which is similar to the plate waste percentages found reported in some school cafeteria settings. The amount of plate waste generated in free-living conditions is significantly positively associated with portion size selected for an item. In a multivariate analysis that controls for macronutrient profile, items selected from the vegetables, fats/oils/dressings, and grains categories are associated with significantly greater amounts of plate waste per item. We find no significant associations between free-living plate waste and gender, age, race or body mass index but find that women leave more plate waste in the lab meal where portion sizes are pre-determined by the researcher and similar for all respondents. We discuss possible implications of these findings for programs focused on reducing plate waste and food waste among consumers.

  9. Cadmium, lead, and mercury exposure assessment among croatian consumers of free-living game.

    Lazarus, Maja; Prevendar Crnić, Andreja; Bilandžić, Nina; Kusak, Josip; Reljić, Slaven

    2014-09-29

    Free-living game can be an important source of dietary cadmium and lead; the question is whether exposure to these two elements is such that it might cause adverse health effects in the consumers. The aim of this study was to estimate dietary exposure to cadmium, lead, and mercury from free-living big game (fallow deer, roe deer, red deer, wild boar, and brown bear), and to mercury from small game (pheasant and hare), hunted in Croatia from 1990 to 2012. The exposure assessment was based on available literature data and our own measurements of metal levels in the tissues of the game, by taking into account different consumption frequencies (four times a year, once a month and once a week). Exposure was expressed as percentage of (provisional) tolerable weekly intake [(P)TWI] values set by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA). Consumption of game meat (0.002-0.5 % PTWI) and liver (0.005-6 % PTWI) assumed for the general population (four times a year) does not pose a health risk to consumers from the general population, nor does monthly (0.02-6 % PTWI) and weekly (0.1-24 % PTWI) consumption of game meat. However, because of the high percentage of free-living game liver and kidney samples exceeding the legislative limits for cadmium (2-99 %) and lead (1-82 %), people should keep the consumption of certain game species' offal as low as possible. Children and pregnant and lactating women should avoid eating game offal altogether. Free-living game liver could be an important source of cadmium if consumed on a monthly basis (3-74 % TWI), and if consumed weekly (11-297 % TWI), it could even give rise to toxicological concern.

  10. Life history of a free-living marine nematode Daptonema normandicum reared in laboratory

    Singh, R.; Ingole, B.S.

    in many temperate water studies (Boyd et al., 2000). However, in tropical and subtropical waters, information on free-living marine nematode communities is very scarce. Most of the researchers suggested (Mohmoudi et al., 2005; Hedfi et al., 2007... stage. After 8 hr, gastrulation begins (Fig. 3g) and in additional 9 hr, the embryo was observed with constant movement (Fig. 3h). This stage can be recognized easily by the active movements of embryo. Embryo was seen to acquire different positions...

  11. Plate waste of adults in the United States measured in free-living conditions

    Allen, H. Raymond

    2018-01-01

    We analyze food-item level data collected from 50 adults from the United States using the Remote Food Photography Method® to provide the first estimates of plate waste gathered from adults across multiple consecutive meals and days in free-living conditions, and during laboratory-based meals with fixed food items and quantities. We find average plate waste in free-living conditions is 5.6 grams (7.7 kcals) per item and that 3.3% of all food selected is returned as plate waste, where the percent waste figure is substantially lower than previously published plate waste estimates gathered primarily from dine-out settings in the United States such as buffets and institutional settings with limited-choice meals (e.g., school cafeterias). Plate waste from the same participants during the laboratory-based meals is significantly higher with an average of 203.2 grams of solid plate waste per meal (531.3 kcals) or 39.1% of the food provided, which is similar to the plate waste percentages found reported in some school cafeteria settings. The amount of plate waste generated in free-living conditions is significantly positively associated with portion size selected for an item. In a multivariate analysis that controls for macronutrient profile, items selected from the vegetables, fats/oils/dressings, and grains categories are associated with significantly greater amounts of plate waste per item. We find no significant associations between free-living plate waste and gender, age, race or body mass index but find that women leave more plate waste in the lab meal where portion sizes are pre-determined by the researcher and similar for all respondents. We discuss possible implications of these findings for programs focused on reducing plate waste and food waste among consumers. PMID:29444094

  12. The use of singleplex and nested PCR to detect Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in free-living frogs.

    Coutinho, Selene Dall'Acqua; Burke, Julieta Catarina; de Paula, Catia Dejuste; Rodrigues, Miguel Trefaut; Catão-Dias, José Luiz

    2015-06-01

    Many microorganisms are able to cause diseases in amphibians, and in the past few years one of the most reported has been Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis. This fungus was first reported in Brazil in 2005; following this, other reports were made in specimens deposited in museum collections, captive and free-living frogs. The aim of this study was to compare singleplex and nested-PCR techniques to detect B. dendrobatidis in free-living and apparently healthy adult frogs from the Brazilian Atlantic Forest. The sample collection area was a protected government park, with no general entrance permitted and no management of the animals there. Swabs were taken from the skin of 107 animals without macroscopic lesions and they were maintained in ethanol p.a. Fungal DNA was extracted and identification of B. dendrobatidis was performed using singleplex and nested-PCR techniques, employing specific primers sequences. B. dendrobatidis was detected in 61/107 (57%) and 18/107 (17%) animals, respectively by nested and singleplex-PCR. Nested-PCR was statistically more sensible than the conventional for the detection of B. dendrobatidis (Chi-square = 37.1; α = 1%) and the agreement between both techniques was considered just fair (Kappa = 0.27). The high prevalence obtained confirms that these fungi occur in free-living frogs from the Brazilian Atlantic Forest with no macroscopic lesions, characterizing the state of asymptomatic carrier. We concluded that the nested-PCR technique, due to its ease of execution and reproducibility, can be recommended as one of the alternatives in epidemiological surveys to detect B. dendrobatidis in healthy free-living frog populations.

  13. Accuracy of three Android-based pedometer applications in laboratory and free-living settings.

    Leong, Jia Yan; Wong, Jyh Eiin

    2017-01-01

    This study examines the accuracy of three popular, free Android-based pedometer applications (apps), namely, Runtastic (RT), Pacer Works (PW), and Tayutau (TY) in laboratory and free-living settings. Forty-eight adults (22.5 ± 1.4 years) completed 3-min bouts of treadmill walking at five incremental speeds while carrying a test smartphone installed with the three apps. Experiment was repeated thrice, with the smartphone placed either in the pants pockets, at waist level, or secured to the left arm by an armband. The actual step count was manually counted by a tally counter. In the free-living setting, each of the 44 participants (21.9 ± 1.6 years) carried a smartphone with installed apps and a reference pedometer (Yamax Digi-Walker CW700) for 7 consecutive days. Results showed that TY produced the lowest mean absolute percent error (APE 6.7%) and was the only app with acceptable accuracy in counting steps in a laboratory setting. RT consistently underestimated steps with APE of 16.8% in the laboratory. PW significantly underestimated steps when the smartphone was secured to the arm, but overestimated under other conditions (APE 19.7%). TY was the most accurate app in counting steps in a laboratory setting with the lowest APE of 6.7%. In the free-living setting, the APE relative to the reference pedometer was 16.6%, 18.0%, and 16.8% for RT, PW, and TY, respectively. None of the three apps counted steps accurately in the free-living setting.

  14. The potential for coral reef establishment through free-living stabilization

    Hennige, S. J.

    2017-10-11

    Corals thrive in a variety of environments, from low wave and tidal energy lagoons, to high energy tidal reef flats, but remain dependent upon suitable substrate. Herein we reviewed the phenomenon of free-living corals (coralliths), examined whether they have the capacity to create their own stable habitat in otherwise uninhabitable, poor substrate environments through \\'free-living stabilization\\', and explore their potential ecological role on coral reefs. This stabilization could be achieved by coral settlement and survival on mobile substrate, with subsequent growth into free-living coralliths until a critical mass is reached that prevents further movement. This allows for secondary reef colonization by other coral species. To preliminarily test this hypothesis we provide evidence that the potential to support secondary coral colonisation increases with corallith size. Due to the limited diversity of corallith species observed here and in the literature, and the lack of physiological differences exhibited by coralliths here to static controls, it seems likely that only a small selection of coral species have the ability to form coralliths, and the potential to create their own stable habitat.

  15. Diverse modes of reproduction in the marine free-living ciliate Glauconema trihymene

    Zufall Rebecca A

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Most free-living ciliates reproduce by equal fission or budding during vegetative growth. In certain ciliates, reproduction occurs inside the cyst wall, viz. reproductive cysts, but more complex reproductive strategies have generally been thought to be confined to parasitic or symbiotic species, e.g. Radiophrya spp. Results In addition to equal fission, asymmetric binary division and reproductive cysts were discovered in the free-living bacterivorous scuticociliate Glauconema trihymene Thompson, 1966. Asymmetric division is an innate physiological state that can be induced by sufficient food, and the higher the food concentration, the longer the asymmetric division persists. During asymmetric division, nuclear and somatic structures divide with transiently arrested cytokinesis and variable positioning of macronuclei. Phylogenetic analysis, based on the small subunit of ribosomal DNA (SSU rDNA sequences, showed that the G. trihymene isolate studied here nests with typical scuticociliates and is paraphyletic to both the symbiotic apostome and astome ciliates, some of which also produce progeny by asymmetric division. Conclusions The asymmetric division in G. trihymene has no precedent among undisturbed free-living ciliates. The coexistence of multiple modes of reproduction may represent a previously undescribed reproductive strategy for ciliates living on food patches in coastal waters. This may also be indicative of similar reproductive strategies among other polyphenic ciliates, which have not been intensively studied. Asymmetric division provides a special opportunity for studying ciliates' phenotypic plasticity and may also illuminate the origins of multicellularity.

  16. Bovine virus diarrhea virus in free-living deer from Denmark.

    Nielsen, S S; Roensholt, L; Bitsch, V

    2000-07-01

    Free-living deer are suggested as a possible source of infection of cattle with bovine virus diarrhea (BVD) virus. To examine this hypothesis blood samples from 476 free-living deer were collected during two different periods and tested for BVD virus and antibody in Denmark. In 1995-96, 207 animals were tested. These included 149 roe deer (Capreolus capreolus), 29 fallow deer (Dama dama), 20 red deer (Cervus elaphus) and one sika deer (Cervus sika). For the remaining eight animals no species information was available. In 1998-99, 269 animals were tested including 212 roe deer and 57 red deer. The animals were selected from areas with a relatively high prevalence of cattle herds with a BVD persistent infection status in 1997 and 1998. All 207 samples from 1995-96 were found antibody-negative except two samples from red deer. Only 158 of the 207 samples were tested for virus and were all found negative. Of the 269 samples from 1998-99 all but one were antibody negative. The positive sample was from a red deer. All samples were virus-negative. It appears that BVD infection does not occur in roe deer in Denmark. The presence of antibody in a few red deer from various districts in Jutland probably results from cattle to deer transmission, rather than spread among deer. Hence, the possibility of free-living deer as a source of infection for cattle in Denmark seems to be remote.

  17. The potential for coral reef establishment through free-living stabilization

    Hennige, S. J.; Burdett, H. L.; Perna, Gabriela; Tudhope, A. W.; Kamenos, N. A.

    2017-01-01

    Corals thrive in a variety of environments, from low wave and tidal energy lagoons, to high energy tidal reef flats, but remain dependent upon suitable substrate. Herein we reviewed the phenomenon of free-living corals (coralliths), examined whether they have the capacity to create their own stable habitat in otherwise uninhabitable, poor substrate environments through 'free-living stabilization', and explore their potential ecological role on coral reefs. This stabilization could be achieved by coral settlement and survival on mobile substrate, with subsequent growth into free-living coralliths until a critical mass is reached that prevents further movement. This allows for secondary reef colonization by other coral species. To preliminarily test this hypothesis we provide evidence that the potential to support secondary coral colonisation increases with corallith size. Due to the limited diversity of corallith species observed here and in the literature, and the lack of physiological differences exhibited by coralliths here to static controls, it seems likely that only a small selection of coral species have the ability to form coralliths, and the potential to create their own stable habitat.

  18. Toward objective monitoring of ingestive behavior in free-living population.

    Sazonov, Edward S; Schuckers, Stephanie A C; Lopez-Meyer, Paulo; Makeyev, Oleksandr; Melanson, Edward L; Neuman, Michael R; Hill, James O

    2009-10-01

    Understanding of eating behaviors associated with obesity requires objective and accurate monitoring of food intake patterns. Accurate methods are available for measuring total energy expenditure and its components in free-living populations, but methods for measuring food intake in free-living people are far less accurate and involve self-reporting or subjective monitoring. We suggest that chews and swallows can be used for objective monitoring of ingestive behavior. This hypothesis was verified in a human study involving 20 subjects. Chews and swallows were captured during periods of quiet resting, talking, and meals of varying size. The counts of chews and swallows along with other derived metrics were used to build prediction models for detection of food intake, differentiation between liquids and solids, and for estimation of the mass of ingested food. The proposed prediction models were able to detect periods of food intake with >95% accuracy and a fine time resolution of 30 s, differentiate solid foods from liquids with >91% accuracy, and predict mass of ingested food with >91% accuracy for solids and >83% accuracy for liquids. In earlier publications, we have shown that chews and swallows can be captured by noninvasive sensors that could be developed into a wearable device. Thus, the proposed methodology could lead to the development of an innovative new way of assessing human eating behavior in free-living conditions.

  19. First Record of Potentially Pathogenic Amoeba Vermamoeba vermiformis (Lobosea: Gymnamoebia Isolated from a Freshwater of Dokdo Island in the East Sea, Korea

    Jong Soo Park

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Vermamoeba vermiformis is a very important free-living amoeba for human health in association with Legionnaires’ disease and keratitis. This interesting amoeba was firstly isolated from a freshwater of Dokdo (island, which was historically used for drinking water. Trophozoites and cyst forms of V. vermiformis strain MG1 are very similar to previous reported species. Trophozoites of V. vermiformis strain MG1 showed cylindrical shape with prominent anterior hyaline region. The average ratio of length and width was about 6.5. Typically, cysts of the strain MG1 showed a spherical or slightly ovoidal shape with smooth wall, and lacked cyst pores. Some cysts had crenulatewalled ectocyst, which was separated from endocyst wall. Further, 18S rRNA gene sequence of V. vermiformis strain MG1 showed very high similarity to other V. vermiformis species (99.4%-99.9% identity. Molecular phylogenetic analysis based on 18S rRNA gene sequences clearly confirmed that the isolate was one strain of V. vermiformis with maximum bootstrap value (maximum likelihood: 100% and Bayesian posterior probability of 1. Thus, the freshwater of Dokdo in Korea could harbor potentially pathogenic amoeba that may cause diseases in humans.

  20. Production and characterization of monoclonal antibodies against cathepsin B and cathepsin B-Like proteins of Naegleria fowleri.

    Seong, Gi-Sang; Sohn, Hae-Jin; Kang, Heekyoung; Seo, Ga-Eun; Kim, Jong-Hyun; Shin, Ho-Joon

    2017-12-01

    Naegleria fowleri causes fatal primary amoebic meningoencephalitis (PAM) in humans and experimental animals. In previous studies, cathepsin B (nfcpb) and cathepsin B-like (nfcpb-L) genes of N. fowleri were cloned, and it was suggested that refolding rNfCPB and rNfCPB-L proteins could play important roles in host tissue invasion, immune response evasion and nutrient uptake. In this study, we produced anti-NfCPB and anti-NfCPB-L monoclonal antibodies (McAb) using a cell fusion technique, and observed their immunological characteristics. Seven hybridoma cells secreting rNfCPB McAbs and three hybridoma cells secreting rNfCPB-L McAbs were produced. Among these, 2C9 (monoclone for rNfCPB) and 1C8 (monoclone for rNfCPB-L) McAb showed high antibody titres and were finally selected for use. As determined by western blotting, 2C9 McAb bound to N. fowleri lysates, specifically the rNfCPB protein, which had bands of 28 kDa and 38.4 kDa. 1C8 McAb reacted with N. fowleri lysates, specifically the rNfCPB-L protein, which had bands of 24 kDa and 34 kDa. 2C9 and 1C8 monoclonal antibodies did not bind to lysates of other amoebae, such as N. gruberi, Acanthamoeba castellanii and A. polyphaga in western blot analyses. Immuno-cytochemistry analysis detected NfCPB and NfCPB-L proteins in the cytoplasm of N. fowleri trophozoites, particularly in the pseudopodia and food-cup. These results suggest that monoclonal antibodies produced against rNfCPB and rNfCPB-L proteins may be useful for further immunological study of PAM. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Antimicrobial Susceptibility and Genotypic Characteristic of Campylobacter spp. Isolates from Free-Living Birds in Poland.

    Krawiec, Marta; Woźniak-Biel, Anna; Bednarski, Michał; Wieliczko, Alina

    2017-11-01

    Campylobacter spp. is the most commonly reported, bacterial cause of human foodborne infection worldwide. Commercial poultry and free-living birds are natural reservoirs of three particular species: Campylobacter jejuni, Campylobacter coli, and Campylobacter lari. The aim of this study was to determine the genotypic characteristics and antibiotic susceptibility of 43 Campylobacter strains, obtained from free-living birds, in Poland. In total, 700 birds were examined. The strains were isolated from 43 birds (6.14%) from the feces of 7 wild bird species: Mallard ducks Anas platyrhynchos (29 positive/121 tested), great cormorants Phalacrocorax carbo (5/77), velvet scoters Melanitta fusca (4/30), tawny owls Strix aluco (2/5), common buzzard Buteo buteo (1/3), rook Corvus frugilegus (1/6), and Eurasian tree sparrow Passer montanus (1/30). Thirty-eight (88.37%) of obtained strains belonged to C. jejuni and five (11.63%) to C. coli. Other 428 examined birds from different bird species were Campylobacter negative. The antimicrobial susceptibility to nine antimicrobials was also studied in investigated isolates of Campylobacter spp. Sixteen of the examined strains (37.21% of all positive samples) showed susceptibility to all of the nine antimicrobials. Moreover, the prevalence of selected virulence genes, such as flaA, cadF, ceuE, virB11, cdtA, cdtB, and cdtC were all analyzed. The virulence gene that was found most frequently in total number of Campylobacter strains was ceuE (72.10%) and other genes, such as flaA, cadF, cdtA, cdtB, and cdtC, were found in over 60% of all examined strains. Variable antimicrobial susceptibility and the presence of different virulence genes of examined strains, isolated from free-living birds, suggest that special attention should be given to wild birds and any potential approaches to the control of antibiotic-resistant Campylobacter should be discussed.

  2. Clinical utility of a complete diagnostic protocol for the ocular evaluation of free-living raptors.

    Labelle, Amber L; Whittington, Julia K; Breaux, Carrie B; Labelle, Philippe; Mitchell, Mark A; Zarfoss, Mitzi K; Schmidt, Stephanie A; Hamor, Ralph E

    2012-01-01

      To describe a protocol for the examination of free-living raptors and report the ophthalmic examination findings of seven raptor species native to central Illinois, namely the barred owl, Cooper's hawk, eastern screech owl, great horned owl, American kestrel, red-tailed hawk, and turkey vulture and to determine if the findings relative to visual prognosis affected eligibility for future release.   Seventy-nine free-living raptors.   Under manual restraint, complete ophthalmic examination including slit-lamp biomicroscopy and indirect funduscopy, applanation tonometry, rebound tonometry, ocular morphometrics, B-mode ultrasound, and electroretinography (ERG) were performed on each bird. Histopathology of enucleated globes was performed after euthanasia or death in selected cases.   The examination protocol was easily performed using manual restraint alone on all birds. Ocular lesions were detected in 48.1% of birds, with 47.3% affected unilaterally and 52.6% affected bilaterally. Ocular lesions were considered to be vision threatening in 29.0% of the unilaterally affected birds and 29.0% of the bilaterally affected birds. The most common case outcomes were discharge from hospital to rehabilitation facility (45.6%) followed by euthanasia (43.0%). The presence of an ocular lesion or a vision-threatening ocular lesion was not significantly associated with outcome. Reference ranges are reported for B-mode ultrasound, ocular morphometrics, and horizontal corneal diameter in all species.   Complete ophthalmic examination can be supplemented by the use of ocular morphometrics, ultrasound, and ERG in the manually restrained raptor. These advanced diagnostic techniques may be useful in developing more objective criteria for evaluating eligibility for release following rehabilitation of free-living birds of prey. © 2011 American College of Veterinary Ophthalmologists.

  3. Patent urachus with subsequent joint infection in a free-living Grevy's zebra foal.

    Ndung'u, Francis K; Ndegwa, Margaret W; deMaar, Thomas W J

    2003-01-01

    A free-living, female Grevy's zebra (Equus grevyi) foal was found lethargic, lame, with swollen joints, pyrexia, and urine dripping from the umbilicus. It died 2 days later despite intensive care. Gross examination revealed patent urachus and suppurative arthritis. Swabs were taken from the joints, the patent urachus, and urine for bacteriology. The dominant isolate was Escherichia coli. The joint infection was probably secondary to septicemia, resulting from the patent urachus. To our knowledge, this is the first report of neonatal patent urachus in a wild equid.

  4. Evaluation of a digital method to assess evening meal intake in a free-living

    Lassen, Anne Dahl; Poulsen, Sanne; Andersen, Lotte Ernst

    2010-01-01

    Background: In recent years new applications of technologies, including digital images, to capture dietary behaviour in real time have been explored. Objectives: To validate a digital method for estimating evening meal intake in a free-living adult population, and to examine the feasibility...... of the method for recording evening meal intake over a prolonged period of time. Design: The digital method was compared against weighed records of 19 participants’ usual evening meals for five consecutive days. Two trained image analysts independently estimated the weight of individual foods within the meals...... estimation in real-time where a prolonged recording period of participants’ meals is needed....

  5. Monitoring of Yersinia enterocolitica strains from free-living animals using different methods.

    Syczyło, K; Platt-Samoraj, A; Bancerz-Kisiel, A; Szczerba-Turek, A; Lipczyńska, K; Jabłoński, A; Procajło, Z; Szweda, W

    2016-01-01

    The aim of the study was to monitor Y. enterocolitica strains from free-living animals captured during 2011-2014 hunting seasons in Poland using warm (ITC) and cold (PSB) enrichment and molecular examination. Over 1600 samples have been cultured. After ITC/PSB enrichment 237 strains presenting features characteristic for Y. enterocolitica were isolated. Molecular examination using multiplex PCR revealed 140 isolates from PSB and 78 from ITC. The concentration of pathogenic Yersinia in asymptomatic carriers is low and the PCR detection should be preceded by bacteriological examination.

  6. Influence of climate and geography on the occurrence of Legionella and amoebae in composting facilities.

    Conza, Lisa; Casati Pagani, Simona; Gaia, Valeria

    2014-11-24

    The incidence of Legionnaires' disease (LD) in southern Switzerland is three times higher than in northern Switzerland. Climatic and geographic factors may be potential causes for this difference.We studied the prevalence of Legionella and free-living amoebae (FLA) in compost and bioaerosol in two Swiss regions to understand the role of climate and geography in the transmission of LD. We also tried to investigate whether or not compost storage duration would influence the composition of Legionella and FLA communities. A larger proportion of compost heaps in facilities from southern Switzerland harbor more diverse Legionella compared to the north (P=0.0146). FLA were isolated from composts in northern facilities at slightly higher rates (88.2% vs. 69.2%) and at lower rates from bioaerosols (6.3% vs. 13%) than in southern Switzerland. The diversity of FLA was higher in northern than in southern Switzerland (80% vs. 65%). A general decrease in the presence and variety of species was observed with decreasing compost storage time length. A discriminant model showed that values of vapour pressure, relative humidity and temperature distinguish the two regions, which were also characterised by different contamination rates by FLA and Legionella. The duration of outdoor storage may favour contamination of the compost by Legionella, and may increase the number and isolation of Legionella naturally occurring in compost. The climate in the south seems to favour higher Legionella contamination of compost heaps: this could explain the higher incidence of LD in southern Switzerland.

  7. Mukilteo water sensor time series - Field work coupling measurements of carbon chemistry and distribution of free-living organisms

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — To estimate the carbon chemistry conditions experienced by free-living organisms, we will conduct coupled biological/carbon chemistry sampling for key zooplankton...

  8. Comparability and feasibility of wrist- and hip-worn accelerometers in free-living adolescents.

    Scott, Joseph J; Rowlands, Alex V; Cliff, Dylan P; Morgan, Philip J; Plotnikoff, Ronald C; Lubans, David R

    2017-12-01

    To determine the comparability and feasibility of wrist- and hip-worn accelerometers among free-living adolescents. 89 adolescents (age=13-14years old) from eight secondary schools in New South Wales (NSW), Australia wore wrist-worn GENEActiv and hip-worn ActiGraph (GT3X+) accelerometers simultaneously for seven days and completed an accelerometry behavior questionnaire. Bivariate correlations between the wrist- and hip-worn out-put were used to determine concurrent validity. Paired samples t-test were used to compare minutes per day in moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA). Group means and paired sample t-tests were used to analyze participants' perceptions of the wrist- and hip-worn monitoring protocols to assist with determining the feasibility. Wrist-worn accelerometry compared favorably with the hip-worn in average activity (r=0.88, phip-worn accelerometer (n=152, 24.4%). Participants reported they liked to wear the device on the wrist (phip (phip-worn accelerometer out-put among adolescents in free-living conditions. Adolescent compliance was significantly higher with wrist placement, with participants reporting that it was more comfortable and less embarrassing to wear on the wrist. Copyright © 2017 Sports Medicine Australia. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Differential expression of disulfide reductase enzymes in a free-living platyhelminth (Dugesia dorotocephala.

    Alberto Guevara-Flores

    Full Text Available A search of the disulfide reductase activities expressed in the adult stage of the free-living platyhelminth Dugesia dorotocephala was carried out. Using GSSG or DTNB as substrates, it was possible to obtain a purified fraction containing both GSSG and DTNB reductase activities. Through the purification procedure, both disulfide reductase activities were obtained in the same chromatographic peak. By mass spectrometry analysis of peptide fragments obtained after tryptic digestion of the purified fraction, the presence of glutathione reductase (GR, thioredoxin-glutathione reductase (TGR, and a putative thioredoxin reductase (TrxR was detected. Using the gold compound auranofin to selectively inhibit the GSSG reductase activity of TGR, it was found that barely 5% of the total GR activity in the D. dorotocephala extract can be assigned to GR. Such strategy did allow us to determine the kinetic parameters for both GR and TGR. Although It was not possible to discriminate DTNB reductase activity due to TrxR from that of TGR, a chromatofocusing experiment with a D. dorotocephala extract resulted in the obtention of a minor protein fraction enriched in TrxR, strongly suggesting its presence as a functional protein. Thus, unlike its parasitic counterparts, in the free-living platyhelminth lineage the three disulfide reductases are present as functional proteins, albeit TGR is still the major disulfide reductase involved in the reduction of both Trx and GSSG. This fact suggests the development of TGR in parasitic flatworms was not linked to a parasitic mode of life.

  10. Increased Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae Disease Prevalence in Domestic Hybrids Among Free-Living Wild Boar.

    Goedbloed, Daniel J; van Hooft, Pim; Lutz, Walburga; Megens, Hendrik-Jan; van Wieren, Sip E; Ydenberg, Ron C; Prins, Herbert H T

    2015-12-01

    Wildlife immune genes are subject to natural selection exerted by pathogens. In contrast, domestic immune genes are largely protected from pathogen selection by veterinary care. Introgression of domestic alleles into the wild could lead to increased disease susceptibility, but observations are scarce due to low introgression rates, low disease prevalence and reduced survival of domestic hybrids. Here we report the first observation of a deleterious effect of domestic introgression on disease prevalence in a free-living large mammal. A fraction of 462 randomly sampled free-living European wild boar (Sus scrofa) was genetically identified as recent wild boar-domestic pig hybrids based on 351 SNP data. Analysis of antibody prevalence against the bacterial pathogen Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae (Mhyo) showed an increased Mhyo prevalence in wild-domestic hybrids. We argue that the most likely mechanism explaining the observed association between domestic hybrid status and Mhyo antibody prevalence would be introgression of deleterious domestic alleles. We hypothesise that large-scale use of antibiotics in the swine breeding sector may have played a role in shaping the relatively deleterious properties of domestic swine immune genes and that domestic introgression may also lead to increased wildlife disease susceptibility in the case of other species.

  11. A model of extracellular enzymes in free-living microbes: which strategy pays off?

    Traving, Sachia J; Thygesen, Uffe H; Riemann, Lasse; Stedmon, Colin A

    2015-11-01

    An initial modeling approach was applied to analyze how a single, nonmotile, free-living, heterotrophic bacterial cell may optimize the deployment of its extracellular enzymes. Free-living cells live in a dilute and complex substrate field, and to gain enough substrate, their extracellular enzymes must be utilized efficiently. The model revealed that surface-attached and free enzymes generate unique enzyme and substrate fields, and each deployment strategy has distinctive advantages. For a solitary cell, surface-attached enzymes are suggested to be the most cost-efficient strategy. This strategy entails potential substrates being reduced to very low concentrations. Free enzymes, on the other hand, generate a radically different substrate field, which suggests significant benefits for the strategy if free cells engage in social foraging or experience high substrate concentrations. Swimming has a slight positive effect for the attached-enzyme strategy, while the effect is negative for the free-enzyme strategy. The results of this study suggest that specific dissolved organic compounds in the ocean likely persist below a threshold concentration impervious to biological utilization. This could help explain the persistence and apparent refractory state of oceanic dissolved organic matter (DOM). Microbial extracellular enzyme strategies, therefore, have important implications for larger-scale processes, such as shaping the role of DOM in ocean carbon sequestration. Copyright © 2015, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

  12. Meat and carcass characteristics of free-living capybaras (Hydrochoerus hydrochaeris

    Gisele A. Felix

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available This study aimed to evaluate carcass and meat characteristics of free-living capybaras (Hydrochoerus hydrochaeris from agricultural areas of Grande Dourados, MS, Brazil. Carcass weight, yield and measures, as well as of commercial cuts weight of five animals (2 males and 3 females, body weight between 63.4-100 kg were determined. The following parameters: moisture, protein, fat, ash, Ca, P and Fe, water holding capacity, cooking losses, shear force and color Instrumental color in CIE-Lab coordinates were determined to meat cuts (Loin, ribs, L. dorsi, chuck/brisket, ham and bottom sirloin. The dressing percentage average value was 62.47% of body weight and cold carcass yield was 57.89% of body weight, with no difference between sexes. The mean percentage of cold loss was 4.10%. Cuts yielding (ribs 24.98% and ham 27.29% were not statistically different (P>0.05. There was no significantly (P> 0.05 difference between the moisture, protein and minerals content between the different cuts, but lipids content was significantly (P< 0.05 lower in loin. The results shown that free-living capybara have characteristics appropriate for commercialization, thus it is possible to development projects for the sustainable management of rural populations.

  13. Restless roosts: Light pollution affects behavior, sleep, and physiology in a free-living songbird.

    Ouyang, Jenny Q; de Jong, Maaike; van Grunsven, Roy H A; Matson, Kevin D; Haussmann, Mark F; Meerlo, Peter; Visser, Marcel E; Spoelstra, Kamiel

    2017-11-01

    The natural nighttime environment is increasingly polluted by artificial light. Several studies have linked artificial light at night to negative impacts on human health. In free-living animals, light pollution is associated with changes in circadian, reproductive, and social behavior, but whether these animals also suffer from physiologic costs remains unknown. To fill this gap, we made use of a unique network of field sites which are either completely unlit (control), or are artificially illuminated with white, green, or red light. We monitored nighttime activity of adult great tits, Parus major, and related this activity to within-individual changes in physiologic indices. Because altered nighttime activity as a result of light pollution may affect health and well-being, we measured oxalic acid concentrations as a biomarker for sleep restriction, acute phase protein concentrations and malaria infection as indices of immune function, and telomere lengths as an overall measure of metabolic costs. Compared to other treatments, individuals roosting in the white light were much more active at night. In these individuals, oxalic acid decreased over the course of the study. We also found that individuals roosting in the white light treatment had a higher probability of malaria infection. Our results indicate that white light at night increases nighttime activity levels and sleep debt and affects disease dynamics in a free-living songbird. Our study offers the first evidence of detrimental effects of light pollution on the health of free-ranging wild animals. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  14. An electronic implementation of amoeba anticipation

    Ziegler, Martin; Ochs, Karlheinz; Hansen, Mirko; Kohlstedt, Hermann

    2014-02-01

    In nature, the capability of memorizing environmental changes and recalling past events can be observed in unicellular organisms like amoebas. Pershin and Di Ventra have shown that such learning behavior can be mimicked in a simple memristive circuit model consisting of an LC (inductance capacitance) contour and a memristive device. Here, we implement this model experimentally by using an Ag/TiO2- x /Al memristive device. A theoretical analysis of the circuit is used to gain insight into the functionality of this model and to give advice for the circuit implementation. In this respect, the transfer function, resonant frequency, and damping behavior for a varying resistance of the memristive device are discussed in detail.

  15. Populational genetic structure of free-living maned wolves (Chrysocyon brachyurus determined by proteic markers

    P. S. R. De Mattos

    Full Text Available Electrophoretic analysis of presumptive twenty gene loci products was conducted in hemolisates and plasma samples of twenty-eight maned wolves (Chrysocyon brachyurus from an area in northeastern São Paulo State, Brazil. The area sampled was divided into three sub-areas, with the Mogi-Guaçu and Pardo rivers regarded as barriers to the gene flow. The polymorphism degree and heterozygosity level (intralocus and average estimated in this study were similar to those detected by other authors for maned wolves and other species of wild free-living canids. The samples of each sub-area and the total sample exhibited genotype frequencies consistent with the genetic equilibrium model. The values of the F-statistics evidenced absence of inbreeding and population subdivision and, consequently, low genetic distances were found among the samples of each area.

  16. Thioredoxin and glutathione systems differ in parasitic and free-living platyhelminths

    Salinas Gustavo

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The thioredoxin and/or glutathione pathways occur in all organisms. They provide electrons for deoxyribonucleotide synthesis, function as antioxidant defenses, in detoxification, Fe/S biogenesis and participate in a variety of cellular processes. In contrast to their mammalian hosts, platyhelminth (flatworm parasites studied so far, lack conventional thioredoxin and glutathione systems. Instead, they possess a linked thioredoxin-glutathione system with the selenocysteine-containing enzyme thioredoxin glutathione reductase (TGR as the single redox hub that controls the overall redox homeostasis. TGR has been recently validated as a drug target for schistosomiasis and new drug leads targeting TGR have recently been identified for these platyhelminth infections that affect more than 200 million people and for which a single drug is currently available. Little is known regarding the genomic structure of flatworm TGRs, the expression of TGR variants and whether the absence of conventional thioredoxin and glutathione systems is a signature of the entire platyhelminth phylum. Results We examine platyhelminth genomes and transcriptomes and find that all platyhelminth parasites (from classes Cestoda and Trematoda conform to a biochemical scenario involving, exclusively, a selenium-dependent linked thioredoxin-glutathione system having TGR as a central redox hub. In contrast, the free-living platyhelminth Schmidtea mediterranea (Class Turbellaria possesses conventional and linked thioredoxin and glutathione systems. We identify TGR variants in Schistosoma spp. derived from a single gene, and demonstrate their expression. We also provide experimental evidence that alternative initiation of transcription and alternative transcript processing contribute to the generation of TGR variants in platyhelminth parasites. Conclusions Our results indicate that thioredoxin and glutathione pathways differ in parasitic and free-living flatworms and

  17. Thioredoxin and glutathione systems differ in parasitic and free-living platyhelminths

    2010-01-01

    Background The thioredoxin and/or glutathione pathways occur in all organisms. They provide electrons for deoxyribonucleotide synthesis, function as antioxidant defenses, in detoxification, Fe/S biogenesis and participate in a variety of cellular processes. In contrast to their mammalian hosts, platyhelminth (flatworm) parasites studied so far, lack conventional thioredoxin and glutathione systems. Instead, they possess a linked thioredoxin-glutathione system with the selenocysteine-containing enzyme thioredoxin glutathione reductase (TGR) as the single redox hub that controls the overall redox homeostasis. TGR has been recently validated as a drug target for schistosomiasis and new drug leads targeting TGR have recently been identified for these platyhelminth infections that affect more than 200 million people and for which a single drug is currently available. Little is known regarding the genomic structure of flatworm TGRs, the expression of TGR variants and whether the absence of conventional thioredoxin and glutathione systems is a signature of the entire platyhelminth phylum. Results We examine platyhelminth genomes and transcriptomes and find that all platyhelminth parasites (from classes Cestoda and Trematoda) conform to a biochemical scenario involving, exclusively, a selenium-dependent linked thioredoxin-glutathione system having TGR as a central redox hub. In contrast, the free-living platyhelminth Schmidtea mediterranea (Class Turbellaria) possesses conventional and linked thioredoxin and glutathione systems. We identify TGR variants in Schistosoma spp. derived from a single gene, and demonstrate their expression. We also provide experimental evidence that alternative initiation of transcription and alternative transcript processing contribute to the generation of TGR variants in platyhelminth parasites. Conclusions Our results indicate that thioredoxin and glutathione pathways differ in parasitic and free-living flatworms and that canonical enzymes

  18. Energetic Assessment of the Nonexercise Activities under Free-Living Conditions

    Shijie Sun

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Nonexercise activities (NAs are common types of physical activity in daily life and critical component in energy expenditure. However, energetic assessment of NA, particularly in free-living subjects, is a technical challenge. In this study, mechanical modeling and portable device were used to evaluate five common types of NA in daily life: sit to stand, lie to sit, bowing while standing, squat, and right leg over left. A human indirect calorimeter was used to measure the activity energy expenditure of NA. Mechanical work and mechanical efficiency of NA were calculated for mechanical modeling. Thirty-two male subjects were recruited for the study (20 subjects for the development of models and 12 subjects for evaluation of models. The average (mean ± SD mechanical work of 5 NAs was 2.31 ± 0.50, 2.88 ± 0.57, 1.75 ± 0.55, 3.96 ± 1.25, and 1.25 ± 0.51 J/kg·m, respectively. The mean mechanical efficiencies of those activities were 22.0 ± 3.3%, 26.5 ± 5.1%, 19.8 ± 3.7%, 24.0 ± 5.5%, and 26.3 ± 5.5%. The activity energy expenditure estimated by the models was not significantly different from the measurements by the calorimeter (p>0.05 with accuracies of 102.2 ± 20.7%, 103.7 ± 25.8%, 105.6 ± 14.6%, 101.1 ± 28.0%, and 95.8 ± 20.7%, respectively, for those activities. These findings suggest that the mechanical models combined with a portable device can provide an alternative method for the energetic analysis of nonexercise activities under free-living condition.

  19. Energetic Assessment of the Nonexercise Activities under Free-Living Conditions.

    Sun, Shijie; Tang, Qiang; Quan, Haiying; Lu, Qi; Sun, Ming; Zhang, Kuan

    2016-01-01

    Nonexercise activities (NAs) are common types of physical activity in daily life and critical component in energy expenditure. However, energetic assessment of NA, particularly in free-living subjects, is a technical challenge. In this study, mechanical modeling and portable device were used to evaluate five common types of NA in daily life: sit to stand, lie to sit, bowing while standing, squat, and right leg over left. A human indirect calorimeter was used to measure the activity energy expenditure of NA. Mechanical work and mechanical efficiency of NA were calculated for mechanical modeling. Thirty-two male subjects were recruited for the study (20 subjects for the development of models and 12 subjects for evaluation of models). The average (mean ± SD) mechanical work of 5 NAs was 2.31 ± 0.50, 2.88 ± 0.57, 1.75 ± 0.55, 3.96 ± 1.25, and 1.25 ± 0.51 J/kg·m, respectively. The mean mechanical efficiencies of those activities were 22.0 ± 3.3%, 26.5 ± 5.1%, 19.8 ± 3.7%, 24.0 ± 5.5%, and 26.3 ± 5.5%. The activity energy expenditure estimated by the models was not significantly different from the measurements by the calorimeter (p > 0.05) with accuracies of 102.2 ± 20.7%, 103.7 ± 25.8%, 105.6 ± 14.6%, 101.1 ± 28.0%, and 95.8 ± 20.7%, respectively, for those activities. These findings suggest that the mechanical models combined with a portable device can provide an alternative method for the energetic analysis of nonexercise activities under free-living condition.

  20. Clinical and serological tests for arboviruses in free-living domestic pigeons (Columba livia).

    Ramos, Bruna Alves; Chiang, Jannifer Oliveira; Martins, Lívia Carício; Chagas, Liliane Leal das; Silva, Franko de Arruda E; Ferreira, Milene Silveira; Freitas, Maria Nazaré Oliveira; Alcantara, Bianca Nascimento de; Silva, Sandro Patroca da; Miranda, Stefânia Araújo; Sepulvreda, Barbara Alves; Corrêa, Layna Thayssa Guimarães; Negrão, Andréa Maria Góes; Vasconcelos, Pedro Fernando da Costa; Casseb, Alexandre do Rosário

    2017-08-01

    In this study, we evaluated the role of free-living domestic pigeons (Columba livia) as a reservoir of arboviruses in the city of Belém, state of Pará, Brazil. We investigated the presence of antibodies against the most prevalent arboviruses. This study was aimed at evaluating some clinical and physical parameters of domestic pigeons, including the presence of antibodies to Amazon-endemic arboviruses. Eighty-five healthy pigeons were captured in Mangal das Garças Park, in Belém, and were bled. Upon capture, the birds were subjected to a clinical examination in search of alterations that could indicate the presence of arboviruses. Blood samples were converted to serum and tested using the haemagglutination inhibition (HI) technique with a panel of 19 antigens of arboviruses circulating in the Amazon. The confirmation assay for the positive reactions to the viral species tested by HI was a neutralisation test in new-born Swiss albino mice (Mus musculus) [mouse neutralisation test (MNT)]. A total of 10 (11.8%) serum samples tested positive for antiflavivirus antibodies by HI. All the samples positive for the HI test were subjected to MNT for detection of viruses and yielded negative results (logarithmic neutralisation index < 1.7). The results represent the first serological detection of antiarbovirus antibodies in domestic pigeons as potential hosts of arboviruses in Brazil. The detection of haemagglutination-inhibiting antibodies against genus Flavivirus indicated that there was recent contact between the analysed domestic pigeons and these arboviruses. Further studies are needed to evaluate the role of free-living pigeons in the maintenance cycle and spread of arboviruses in the Amazon.

  1. Palaeoecology of testate amoebae in a tropical peatland.

    Swindles, Graeme T; Lamentowicz, Mariusz; Reczuga, Monika; Galloway, Jennifer M

    2016-09-01

    We present the first detailed analysis of subfossil testate amoebae from a tropical peatland. Testate amoebae were analysed in a 4-m peat core from western Amazonia (Peru) and a transfer function developed from the site was applied to reconstruct changes in water table over the past ca. 8,000 years. Testate amoebae were in very low abundance in the core, especially in the lower 125cm, due to a combination of poor preservation and obscuration by other organic matter. A modified preparation method enabled at least 50 testate amoebae to be counted in each core sample. The most abundant taxa preserved include Centropyxis aculeata, Hyalosphenia subflava, Phryganella acropodia and Trigonopyxis arcula. Centropyxis aculeata, an unambiguous wet indicator, is variably present and indicates several phases of near-surface water table. Our work shows that even degraded, low-abundance assemblages of testate amoebae can provide useful information regarding the long-term ecohydrological developmental history of tropical peatlands. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  2. The Role of Attached and Free-Living Bacteria in Biodegradation in Karst Aquifers

    Ahmad Kheder

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Natural attenuation of groundwater contamination occurs at some level for all aquifers impacted with organic contaminants. The issues regarding natural attenuation are whether it takes place at a sufficient rate to be protective of human health and the environment. Implementation of a Monitored Natural Attenuation (MNA remedial alternative for groundwater requires parties responsible for the contamination to demonstrate to regulators and the public that MNA is protective at a given site. Analysis of MNA for remediation of karst aquifers is hampered by a lack of understanding of biodegradation in karst environments. The lack of studies examining biodegradation in karst aquifers may in large part be due to the widespread perception that contaminants are rapidly flushed out of karst aquifers resulting in insufficient residence times for contaminants to biodegrade. In highly developed and well-connected conduit systems, the rate of contaminant migration is perceived to be much faster than the rate of biodegradation. This perception of contaminant transport is largely incorrect. Tracer studies for karst aquifers often indicate that these aquifers are characterized by diverse flow regimes and storage capabilities. Additionally, it is also believed that if bioremediation in bedrock aquifers is dependent upon contact between surface-attached bacteria and contaminants, then bioremediation would be limited by the low surface-area-to-volume ratio (SA/V of karst aquifers. A quantitative basis, however, for accepting or rejecting the assumption that attached bacteria dominate the biodegradation process in karst conduits has not been shown. The objective of this research was to determine if free-living karst bacteria from contributed as much to toluene biodegradation as attached bacteria. This is an important area of research. Research indicates bacteria are both attached and free-living in karst aquifers and it is unrealistic to think that only the attached

  3. Expression of a neuropeptide similar to allatotropin in free living turbellaria (platyhelminthes).

    Adami, Mariana Laura; Damborenea, Cristina; Ronderos, Jorge Rafael

    2011-12-01

    Mechanisms coordinating cell-cell interaction have appeared early in evolution. Allatotropin (AT), a neuropeptide isolated based on its ability to stimulate the synthesis of juvenile hormones (JHs) in insects has also been found in other invertebrate phyla. Despite this function, AT has proved to be myotropic. In the present study we analyze its expression in two groups of Turbellaria (Catenulida, Macrostomida), and its probable relationship with muscle tissue. The results show the presence of an AT-like peptide in the free living turbellaria analyzed. The analysis of the expression of the peptide together with phalloidin, suggests a functional relationship between the peptide and muscle tissue, showing that it could be acting as a myoregulator. The finding of immunoreactive fibers associated with sensory organs like ciliated pits in Catenulida and eyes in Macrostomida makes probable that AT could play a role in the physiological mechanisms controlling circadian activities. Furthermore, the existence of AT in several phyla of Protostomata suggests that this peptide could be a synapomorphic feature of this group. Indeed, the presence in organisms that do not undergo metamorphosis, could be signaling that it was first involved in myotropic activities, being the stimulation of the synthesis of JHs a secondary function acquired by the phylum Arthropoda. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. New insights into the karyotype evolution of the free-living flatworm Macrostomum lignano (Platyhelminthes, Turbellaria).

    Zadesenets, Kira S; Schärer, Lukas; Rubtsov, Nikolay B

    2017-07-20

    The free-living flatworm Macrostomum lignano is a model organism for evolutionary and developmental biology studies. Recently, an unusual karyotypic diversity was revealed in this species. Specifically, worms are either 'normal' 2n = 8, or they are aneuploid with one or two additional large chromosome(s) (i.e. 2n = 9 or 2n = 10, respectively). Aneuploid worms did not show visible behavioral or morphological abnormalities and were successful in reproduction. In this study, we generated microdissected DNA probes from chromosome 1 (further called MLI1), chromosome 2 (MLI2), and a pair of similar-sized smaller chromosomes (MLI3, MLI4). FISH using these probes revealed that MLI1 consists of contiguous regions homologous to MLI2-MLI4, suggesting that MLI1 arose due to the whole genome duplication and subsequent fusion of one full chromosome set into one large metacentric chromosome. Therefore, one presumably full haploid genome was packed into MLI1, leading to hidden tetraploidy in the M. lignano genome. The study of Macrostomum sp. 8 - a sibling species of M. lignano - revealed that it usually has one additional pair of large chromosomes (2n = 10) showing a high homology to MLI1, thus suggesting hidden hexaploidy in its genome. Possible evolutionary scenarios for the emergence of the M. lignano and Macrostomum sp. 8 genomes are discussed.

  5. Influence of industrial heavy metal pollution on soil free-living nematode population

    Pen-Mouratov, Stanislav; Shukurov, Nosir; Steinberger, Yosef

    2008-01-01

    The effect of distance from a heavy metal pollution source on the soil nematode community (trophic structure, sex structure, and taxa composition) was investigated along a 15-km transect originating at the Almalyk Industrial Complex, Uzbekistan (pollution source). The soil nematode community was exposed to heavy metal influence both directly and through soil properties changes. Pollution effect on the density and biomass of soil free-living nematodes was found to be highest at pollution source, with fungivores and plant parasites dominating at the upper and deeper soil layers next to the pollution source. These groups decreased along the transect, yielding domination to bacteria- and fungi-feeders. The sex ratio of nematode communities was found to be dependent on heavy metal pollution levels, with the juveniles being the most sensitive nematode group. The Maturity and modified Maturity Indices, reflecting the degree of disturbance of the soil ecosystem, were found to be the most sensitive indices. - Trophic structure and sex ratio of soil nematode population are sensitive tools for monitoring industrial pollution

  6. A smartphone-driven methodology for estimating physical activities and energy expenditure in free living conditions.

    Guidoux, Romain; Duclos, Martine; Fleury, Gérard; Lacomme, Philippe; Lamaudière, Nicolas; Manenq, Pierre-Henri; Paris, Ludivine; Ren, Libo; Rousset, Sylvie

    2014-12-01

    This paper introduces a function dedicated to the estimation of total energy expenditure (TEE) of daily activities based on data from accelerometers integrated into smartphones. The use of mass-market sensors such as accelerometers offers a promising solution for the general public due to the growing smartphone market over the last decade. The TEE estimation function quality was evaluated using data from intensive numerical experiments based, first, on 12 volunteers equipped with a smartphone and two research sensors (Armband and Actiheart) in controlled conditions (CC) and, then, on 30 other volunteers in free-living conditions (FLC). The TEE given by these two sensors in both conditions and estimated from the metabolic equivalent tasks (MET) in CC served as references during the creation and evaluation of the function. The TEE mean gap in absolute value between the function and the three references was 7.0%, 16.4% and 2.7% in CC, and 17.0% and 23.7% according to Armband and Actiheart, respectively, in FLC. This is the first step in the definition of a new feedback mechanism that promotes self-management and daily-efficiency evaluation of physical activity as part of an information system dedicated to the prevention of chronic diseases. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Epidemiology of viral haemorrhagic disease and myxomatosis in a free-living population of wild rabbits.

    Calvete, C; Estrada, R; Villafuerte, R; Osácar, J J; Lucientes, J

    2002-06-22

    From January 1993 to June 1996, the epidemiology of myxomatosis and viral haemorrhagic disease (VHD) was studied in a free-living population of wild rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus) in Spain by means of serological surveys and radiotracking. Myxomatosis was endemic and associated with the breeding period. Its serological pattern was characterised by a 100 per cent prevalence of antibodies in adult rabbits and a rapid increase in antibodies in young rabbits in their first year. No mortality from myxomatosis was detected in adults, and mortality in young rabbits could not be estimated because of interference by predators and scavengers and the deaths of many radiotagged rabbits inside their burrows. VHD was also an endemic disease associated with the breeding period. Adults had a higher prevalence of antibodies against VHD than young rabbits, reaching values of 80 to 90 per cent. During the study, there was an increase in rabbit numbers as a result of a decrease in mortality from predation which was associated with an increase in mortality due to VHD and in the prevalence of antibodies to VHD. Mortality from VHD was lower in rabbits with VHD antibodies than in seronegative rabbits, but some mortality from the disease was also detected in seropositive rabbits. The annual mean mortality rate due to VHD in adult rabbits was estimated to be 21.8 per cent.

  8. Complementary data on four methods for sampling free-living ticks in the Brazilian Pantanal

    Vanessa do Nascimento Ramos

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available In this study, four methods for sampling free-living ticks that are used in ecological and human tick-bite risk studies were evaluated. Cloth dragging, carbon dioxide traps and visual searches and inspection of plant litter on the ground were used in field and forest areas within the Brazilian Pantanal. Among the three tick species collected, Amblyomma sculptum predominated, followed by Amblyomma parvum and Amblyomma ovale. Dragging, a cheap and simple technique, yielded the highest numbers of ticks, particularly nymphs. The visual search detected a high number of adult ticks and provided information on tick questing height. Even though laborious, plant litter examination showed that large numbers of ticks may use this stratum. Carbon dioxide (CO2 traps are expensive and difficult to handle, but they are highly efficient for adult ticks, especially A. parvum. These data indicate that one method alone is incapable of providing a representative sample of the tick fauna in a particular area and that multiple techniques should be used for tick population studies.

  9. Chlamydia species in free-living Cattle Egret (Bubulcus ibis and Hoopoe (Upupa epops in Egypt

    Jakeen K. El-Jakee

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Little information is available on the presence of chlamydia infection in wildlife. This study was conducted to assess the occurrence of chlamydiae in asymptomatic birds from two species of wild birds (Cattle Egret and Hoopoe in Egypt. In the present study Chlamydiaceae was analyzed using Giemsa stain, Giménez stain, fluorescent antibody test (FAT and PCR. The results of these techniques were compared with CFT for detecting Chlamydia psittaci antibodies among the examined birds. The results reveal that 96.4%, 81.8%, 89.1%, 80.0% and 58.2% of the examined samples were positive for chlamydiosis using PCR, Giemsa stain, Giménez stain, FA, and CFT respectively among Hoopoe. The percentages were 90.6%, 77.4%, 83.0%, 75.5% and 66.0% respectively for the previous tests among Cattle Egret birds. The results suggest that Cattle Egret and Hoopoe may be reservoir of Chlamydiaceae species and thus shed the organisms in their excreta. The shedding of chlamydiae by free living birds in Egypt may expose humans that come in contact with these birds to zoonotic risks.

  10. Biodiversity of free-living marine nematodes in the southern Yellow Sea, China

    Liu, Xiaoshou; Xu, Man; Hua, Er; Zhang, Zhinan

    2016-02-01

    Biodiversity patterns of free-living marine nematodes were studied using specific, taxonomic and phylogenetic diversity measures in the southern Yellow Sea, China. The results showed that the average of Shannon-Wiener diversity index ( H') in the study area was 3.17. The higher values were distributed in the east part of Shandong coastal waters and north part of Jiangsu coastal waters, while the lower values were distributed in the southern Yellow Sea Cold Water Mass (YSCWM). The average of taxonomic diversity ( Δ) was 62.09 in the study region. The higher values were distributed in the transitional areas between the coastal areas and the southern YSCWM, while the lower values were distributed near the north part of Jiangsu coastal waters and the YSCWM. Results of correlation analysis of species diversity and taxonomic diversity showed that some of the two kinds of diversity index were independent, which suggested that combining the two kinds of diversity indices can reflect the ecological characteristics better. A test for 95% probability funnels of average taxonomic distinctness and variation in taxonomic distinctness suggested that Station 8794 (in the YSCWM) was outside of the 95% probability funnels, which may be due to the environmental stress. Results of correlation analysis between marine nematodes biodiversity and environmental variables showed that the sediment characteristics (Mdø and Silt-clay fraction) and phaeophorbide a (Pha- a) were the most important factors to determine the biodiversity patterns of marine nematodes.

  11. Influence of industrial heavy metal pollution on soil free-living nematode population

    Pen-Mouratov, Stanislav [The Mina and Everard Goodman Faculty of Life Sciences, Bar-Ilan University, Ramat-Gan 52900 (Israel); Shukurov, Nosir [Institute of Geology and Geophysics, Academy of Sciences, Tashkent 700041 (Uzbekistan); Steinberger, Yosef [The Mina and Everard Goodman Faculty of Life Sciences, Bar-Ilan University, Ramat-Gan 52900 (Israel)], E-mail: steinby@mail.biu.ac.il

    2008-03-15

    The effect of distance from a heavy metal pollution source on the soil nematode community (trophic structure, sex structure, and taxa composition) was investigated along a 15-km transect originating at the Almalyk Industrial Complex, Uzbekistan (pollution source). The soil nematode community was exposed to heavy metal influence both directly and through soil properties changes. Pollution effect on the density and biomass of soil free-living nematodes was found to be highest at pollution source, with fungivores and plant parasites dominating at the upper and deeper soil layers next to the pollution source. These groups decreased along the transect, yielding domination to bacteria- and fungi-feeders. The sex ratio of nematode communities was found to be dependent on heavy metal pollution levels, with the juveniles being the most sensitive nematode group. The Maturity and modified Maturity Indices, reflecting the degree of disturbance of the soil ecosystem, were found to be the most sensitive indices. - Trophic structure and sex ratio of soil nematode population are sensitive tools for monitoring industrial pollution.

  12. Toward a low-cost gait analysis system for clinical and free-living assessment.

    Ladha, Cassim; Del Din, Silvia; Nazarpour, Kianoush; Hickey, Aodhan; Morris, Rosie; Catt, Michael; Rochester, Lynn; Godfrey, Alan

    2016-08-01

    Gait is an important clinical assessment tool since changes in gait may reflect changes in general health. Measurement of gait is a complex process which has been restricted to bespoke clinical facilities until recently. The use of inexpensive wearable technologies is an attractive alternative and offers the potential to assess gait in any environment. In this paper we present the development of a low cost analysis gait system built using entirely open source components. The system is used to capture spatio-temporal gait characteristics derived from an existing conceptual model, sensitive to ageing and neurodegenerative pathology (e.g. Parkinson's disease). We demonstrate the system is suitable for use in a clinical unit and will lead to pragmatic use in a free-living (home) environment. The system consists of a wearable (tri-axial accelerometer and gyroscope) with a Raspberry Pi module for data storage and analysis. This forms ongoing work to develop gait as a low cost diagnostic in modern healthcare.

  13. Evidence for free-living Bacteroides in Cladophora along the shores of the Great Lakes

    Whitman, Richard L.; Byappanahalli, Muruleedhara; Spoljaric, Ashley; Przybyla-Kelly, Katarzyna; Shively, Dawn A.; Nevers, Meredith

    2014-01-01

    Bacteroides is assumed to be restricted to the alimentary canal of animals and humans and is considered to be non-viable in ambient environments. We hypothesized that Bacteroides could persist and replicate within beach-stranded Cladophora glomerata mats in southern Lake Michigan, USA. Mean Bacteroides concentration (per GenBac3 Taqman quantitative PCR assay) during summer 2012 at Jeorse Park Beach was 5.2 log calibrator cell equivalents (CCE) g-1 dry weight (dw), ranging from 3.7 to 6.7. We monitored a single beach-stranded mat for 3 wk; bacterial concentrations increased by 1.6 log CCE g-1 dw and correlated significantly with ambient temperature (p = 0.003). Clonal growth was evident, as observed by >99% nucleotide sequence similarity among clones. In in vitro studies, Bacteroides concentrations increased by 5.5 log CCE g-1 after 7 d (27°C) in fresh Cladophora collected from rocks. Partial sequencing of the 16S rRNA gene of 36 clones from the incubation experiment showed highly similar genotypes (≥97% sequence overlap). The closest enteric Bacteroides spp. from the National Center for Biotechnology Information database were only 87 to 91% similar. Genomic similarity, clonality, growth, and persistence collectively suggest that putative, free-living Bacteroides inhabit Cladophora mats of southern Lake Michigan. These findings may have important biological, medical, regulatory, microbial source tracking, and public health implications.

  14. Behavioral correlates of heart rates of free-living Greater White-fronted Geese

    Ely, Craig R.; Ward, D.H.; Bollinger, K.S.

    1999-01-01

    We simultaneously monitored the heart rate and behavior of nine free-living Greater White-fronted Geese (Anser albifrons) on their wintering grounds in northern California. Heart rates of wild geese were monitored via abdominally-implanted radio transmitters with electrodes that received electrical impulses of the heart and emitted a radio signal with each ventricular contraction. Post-operative birds appeared to behave normally, readily rejoining flocks and flying up to 15 km daily from night-time roost sites to feed in surrounding agricultural fields. Heart rates varied significantly among individuals and among behaviors, and ranged from less than 100 beats per minute (BPM) during resting, to over 400 BPM during flight. Heart rates varied from 80 to 140 BPM during non-strenuous activities such as walking, feeding, and maintenance activities, to about 180 BPM when birds became alert, and over 400 BPM when birds were startled, even if they did not take flight. Postflight heart rate recovery time averaged postures, as heart rates were context-dependent, and were highest in initial encounters among individuals. Instantaneous measures of physiological parameters, such as heart rate, are often better indicators of the degree of response to external stimuli than visual observations and can be used to improve estimates of energy expenditure based solely on activity data.

  15. Free-living spirochetes from Cape Cod microbial mats detected by electron microscopy

    Teal, T. H.; Chapman, M.; Guillemette, T.; Margulis, L.

    1996-01-01

    Spirochetes from microbial mats and anaerobic mud samples collected in salt marshes were studied by light microscopy, whole mount and thin section transmission electron microscopy. Enriched in cellobiose-rifampin medium, selective for Spirochaeta bajacaliforniensis, seven distinguishable spirochete morphotypes were observed. Their diameters ranged from 0.17 micron to > 0.45 micron. Six of these morphotypes came from southwest Cape Cod, Massachusetts: five from Microcoleus-dominated mat samples collected at Sippewissett salt marsh and one from anoxic mud collected at School Street salt marsh (on the east side of Eel Pond). The seventh morphotype was enriched from anoxic mud sampled from the north central Cape Cod, at the Sandy Neck salt marsh. Five of these morphotypes are similar or identical to previously described spirochetes (Leptospira, Spirochaeta halophila, Spirochaeta bajacaliforniensis, Spirosymplokos deltaeiberi and Treponema), whereas the other two have unique features that suggest they have not been previously described. One of the morphotypes resembles Spirosymplokos deltaeiberi (the largest free-living spirochete described), in its large variable diameter (0.4-3.0 microns), cytoplasmic granules, and spherical (round) bodies with composite structure. This resemblance permits its tentative identification as a Sippewissett strain of Spirosymplokos deltaeiberi. Microbial mats samples collected in sterile Petri dishes and stored dry for more than four years yielded many organisms upon rewetting, including small unidentified spirochetes in at least 4 out of 100 enrichments.

  16. Wild, free-living rufous hummingbirds do not use geometric cues in a spatial task.

    Hornsby, Mark A W; Hurly, T Andrew; Hamilton, Caitlin E; Pritchard, David J; Healy, Susan D

    2014-10-01

    In the laboratory, many species orient themselves using the geometric properties of an enclosure or array and geometric information is often preferred over visual cues. Whether animals use geometric cues when relocating rewarded locations in the wild, however, has rarely been investigated. We presented free-living rufous hummingbirds with a rectangular array of four artificial flowers to investigate learning of rewarded locations using geometric cues. In one treatment, we rewarded two of four flowers at diagonally opposite corners. In a second treatment, we provided a visual cue to the rewarded flower by connecting the flowers with "walls" consisting of four dowels (three white, one blue) laid on the ground connecting each of the flowers. Neither treatment elicited classical geometry results; instead, hummingbirds typically chose one particular flower over all others. When we exchanged that flower with another, hummingbirds tended to visit the original flower. These results suggest that (1) hummingbirds did not use geometric cues, but instead may have used a visually derived cue on the flowers themselves, and (2) using geometric cues may have been more difficult than using visual characteristics. Although hummingbirds typically prefer spatial over visual information, we hypothesize that they will not use geometric cues over stable visual features but that they make use of small, flower-specific visual cues. Such cues may play a more important role in foraging decisions than previously thought. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. Confirmation and phylogenetic analysis of rabbit hemorrhagic disease virus in free-living rabbits from the Netherlands

    van de Bildt, M. W. G.; van Bolhuis, G. H.; van Zijderveld, F.; van Riel, D.; Drees, J. M.; Osterhaus, A. D. M. E.; Kuiken, T.

    2006-01-01

    The number of free-living European rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus) in the Netherlands has declined dramatically in recent years. Although rabbit hemorrhagic disease virus (RHDV) infection has been implicated as a possible cause of this decline, the definitive diagnosis has not been reported. We

  18. Validation of Accelerometer-Based Energy Expenditure Prediction Models in Structured and Simulated Free-Living Settings

    Montoye, Alexander H. K.; Conger, Scott A.; Connolly, Christopher P.; Imboden, Mary T.; Nelson, M. Benjamin; Bock, Josh M.; Kaminsky, Leonard A.

    2017-01-01

    This study compared accuracy of energy expenditure (EE) prediction models from accelerometer data collected in structured and simulated free-living settings. Twenty-four adults (mean age 45.8 years, 50% female) performed two sessions of 11 to 21 activities, wearing four ActiGraph GT9X Link activity monitors (right hip, ankle, both wrists) and a…

  19. Stressful colours : corticosterone concentrations in a free-living songbird vary with the spectral composition of experimental illumination

    Ouyang, Jenny Q.; de Jong, Maaike; Hau, Michaela; Visser, Marcel E.; van Grunsven, Roy H. A.; Spoelstra, Kamiel

    2015-01-01

    Organisms have evolved under natural daily light/dark cycles for millions of years. These cycles have been disturbed as night-time darkness is increasingly replaced by artificial illumination. Investigating the physiological consequences of free-living organisms in artificially lit environments is

  20. Description of free-living marine nematodes found in the intestine of fishes from the Brazilian coast.

    Abolafia, Joaquín; Ruiz-Cuenca, Alba N; Fernandes, Berenice M M; Cohen, Simone C; Cárdenas, Melissa Q

    2015-04-22

    The marine nematodes usually comprise free-living species, although a few are parasitic. However, several cases of free-living nematodes found accidentally in the digestive tract of certain vertebrates, especially fishes, have sometimes been recorded and categorized as pseudoparasites. In the present work, two species of marine fishes, the rhomboid crappie, Diapterus rhombeus, and the silvered crappie, Eucinostomus argenteus (Perciformes: Gerreidae), from Angra dos Reis on the coast of Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) were examined. Seven species of free-living marine nematodes were found in the digestive tract of these fish. Several of these species remain unknown as free-living forms in Brazil. The combination of the fish feeding strategies and the poor preservation of the body of the nematode specimens found could indicate that these nematodes are pseudoparasites, appearing in the fishes' digestive tracts through accidental ingestion and thereafter surviving for brief periods of time. Descriptions, illustrations and tables of measurements are provided for all species. Six of these species (Croconema torquens, Dorylaimopsis pellucida, Oncholaimellus labiatus, Parodontophora breviamphida, Prooncholaimus ornatus, Trissonchulus latus) have been reported for the first time from the Brazilian coast.

  1. Not all are free-living: high-throughput DNA metabarcoding reveals a diverse community of protists parasitizing soil metazoa

    Geisen, S.; Laros, I.; Vizcaino, A.; Bonkowski, M.; Groot, de G.A.

    2015-01-01

    Protists, the most diverse eukaryotes, are largely considered to be free-living bacterivores, but vast numbers of taxa are known to parasitize plants or animals. High-throughput sequencing (HTS) approaches now commonly replace cultivation-based approaches in studying soil protists, but insights into

  2. Seroprevalence of Toxoplasma gondii in free-living Amazon river dolphins (Inia geoffrensis) from central Amazon, Brazil

    Toxoplasma gondii is an important pathogen in aquatic mammals and its presence in these animals may indicate water contamination of aquatic environment by oocysts. Serum samples from 95 dolphins from free-living Amazon River dolphins (Inia geoffrensis) from Sustainable Development Reserve Mamirauá (...

  3. Stressful colours: corticosterone concentrations in a free-living songbird vary with the spectral composition of experimental illumination

    Ouyang, J.; Jong, de M.J.; Hau, M.; Visser, M.E.; Grunsven, van R.H.A.; Spoelstra, K.

    2015-01-01

    Organisms have evolved under natural daily light/dark cycles for millions of years. These cycles have been disturbed as night-time darkness is increasingly replaced by artificial illumination. Investigating the physiological consequences of free-living organisms in artificially lit environments is

  4. Unraveling the Photoprotective Response of Lichenized and Free-Living Green Algae (Trebouxiophyceae, Chlorophyta to Photochilling Stress

    Fátima Míguez

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Lichens and free-living terrestrial algae are widespread across many habitats and develop successfully in ecosystems where a cold winter limits survival. With the goal of comparing photoprotective responses in free-living and lichenized algae, the physiological responses to chilling and photochilling conditions were studied in three lichens and their isolated algal photobionts together as well as in a fourth free-living algal species. We specifically addressed the following questions: (i Are there general patterns of acclimation in green algae under chilling and photochilling stresses? (ii Do free-living algae exhibit a similar pattern of responses as their lichenized counterparts? (iii Are these responses influenced by the selection pressure of environmental conditions or by the phylogenetic position of each species? To answer these questions, photosynthetic fluorescence measurements as well as pigment and low molecular weight carbohydrate pool analyses were performed under controlled laboratory conditions. In general, photochemical efficiency in all free-living algae decreased with increasing duration of the stress, while the majority of lichens maintained an unchanged photochemical activity. Nevertheless, these patterns cannot be generalized because the alga Trebouxia arboricola and the lichen Ramalina pollinaria (associated with Trebouxia photobionts both showed a similar decrease in photochemical efficiency. In contrast, in the couple Elliptochloris bilobata-Baeomyces rufus, only the algal partner exhibited a broad physiological performance under stress. This study also highlights the importance of the xanthophyll cycle in response to the studied lichens and algae to photochilling stress, while the accumulation of sugars was not related to cold acclimation, except in the alga E. bilobata. The differences in response patterns detected among species can be mainly explained by their geographic origin, although the phylogenetic position should

  5. Genetic diversity of free-living Symbiodinium in surface water and sediment of Hawai`i and Florida

    Takabayashi, M.; Adams, L. M.; Pochon, X.; Gates, R. D.

    2012-03-01

    Marine dinoflagellates in the genus Symbiodinium are primarily known for their symbiotic associations with invertebrates and protists, although they are also found free-living in nanoplankton and microphytobenthic communities. Free-living Symbiodinium are necessary for hosts that must acquire their symbionts anew each generation and for the possible reestablishment of endosymbiosis in bleached adults. The diversity and ecology of free-living Symbiodinium are not well studied by comparison with their endosymbiotic counterparts, and as a result, our understanding of the linkages between free-living and endosymbiotic Symbiodinium is poor. Here, we begin to address this knowledge gap by describing the genetic diversity of Symbiodinium in the surface water and reef sediments of Hawai`i and Florida using Symbiodinium-specific primers for the hypervariable region of the chloroplast 23S domain V (cp23S-HVR). In total, 29 Symbiodinium sequence types were detected, 16 of which were novel. The majority of Symbiodinium sequence types in free-living environments belonged to clades A and B, but smaller numbers of sequence types belonging to clades C, D, and G were also detected. The majority of sequences recovered from Hawai`i belonged to clades A and C and those from Florida to clade B. Such distribution patterns are consistent with the endosymbiotic diversity previously reported for these two regions. The ancestral sequence types in each clade were typically recovered from surface water and sediments both in Hawai`i and Florida and have been previously reported as endosymbionts of a range of invertebrates, suggesting that these types have the capacity to exploit a range of very different habitats. More derived sequence types in clades A, B, C, and G were not recovered here, suggesting they are potentially restricted to endosymbiotic environments.

  6. Data logging of body temperatures provides precise information on phenology of reproductive events in a free-living arctic hibernator

    Williams, C.T.; Sheriff, M.J.; Schmutz, J.A.; Kohl, F.; Toien, O.; Buck, C.L.; Barnes, B.M.

    2011-01-01

    Precise measures of phenology are critical to understanding how animals organize their annual cycles and how individuals and populations respond to climate-induced changes in physical and ecological stressors. We show that patterns of core body temperature (T b) can be used to precisely determine the timing of key seasonal events including hibernation, mating and parturition, and immergence and emergence from the hibernacula in free-living arctic ground squirrels (Urocitellus parryii). Using temperature loggers that recorded T b every 20 min for up to 18 months, we monitored core T b from three females that subsequently gave birth in captivity and from 66 female and 57 male ground squirrels free-living in the northern foothills of the Brooks Range Alaska. In addition, dates of emergence from hibernation were visually confirmed for four free-living male squirrels. Average T b in captive females decreased by 0.5–1.0°C during gestation and abruptly increased by 1–1.5°C on the day of parturition. In free-living females, similar shifts in T b were observed in 78% (n = 9) of yearlings and 94% (n = 31) of adults; females without the shift are assumed not to have given birth. Three of four ground squirrels for which dates of emergence from hibernation were visually confirmed did not exhibit obvious diurnal rhythms in T b until they first emerged onto the surface when T b patterns became diurnal. In free-living males undergoing reproductive maturation, this pre-emergence euthermic interval averaged 20.4 days (n = 56). T b-loggers represent a cost-effective and logistically feasible method to precisely investigate the phenology of reproduction and hibernation in ground squirrels.

  7. Free-living gait characteristics in ageing and Parkinson's disease: impact of environment and ambulatory bout length.

    Del Din, Silvia; Godfrey, Alan; Galna, Brook; Lord, Sue; Rochester, Lynn

    2016-05-12

    Gait is emerging as a powerful diagnostic and prognostic tool, and as a surrogate marker of disease progression for Parkinson's disease (PD). Accelerometer-based body worn monitors (BWMs) facilitate the measurement of gait in clinical environments. Moreover they have the potential to provide a more accurate reflection of gait in the home during habitual behaviours. Emerging research suggests that measurement of gait using BWMs is feasible but this has not been investigated in depth. The aims of this study were to explore (i) the impact of environment and (ii) ambulatory bout (AB) length on gait characteristics for discriminating between people with PD and age-matched controls. Fourteen clinically relevant gait characteristics organised in five domains (pace, variability, rhythm, asymmetry, postural control) were quantified using laboratory based and free-living data collected over 7 days using a BWM placed on the lower back in 47 PD participants and 50 controls. Free-living data showed that both groups walked with decreased pace and increased variability, rhythm and asymmetry compared to walking in the laboratory setting. Four of the 14 gait characteristics measured in free-living conditions were significantly different between controls and people with PD compared to two measured in the laboratory. Between group differences depended on bout length and were more apparent during longer ABs. ABs ≤ 10s did not discriminate between groups. Medium to long ABs highlighted between-group significant differences for pace, rhythm and asymmetry. Longer ABs should therefore be taken into account when evaluating gait characteristics in free-living conditions. This study provides encouraging results to support the use of a single BWM for free-living gait evaluation in people with PD with potential for research and clinical application.

  8. Taxonomic profiles in metagenomic analyses of free-living microbial communities in the Ofunato Bay

    Reza, Md. Shaheed; Kobiyama, Atsushi; Yamada, Yuichiro; Ikeda, Yuri; Ikeda, Daisuke; Mizusawa, Nanami; Ikeo, Kazuho; Sato, Shigeru; Ogata, Takehiko; Jimbo, Mitsuru; Kudo, Toshiaki; Kaga, Shinnosuke; Watanabe, Shiho; Naiki, Kimiaki; Kaga, Yoshimasa; Mineta, Katsuhiko; Bajic, Vladimir B.; Gojobori, Takashi; Watabe, Shugo

    2018-01-01

    The Ofunato Bay in Iwate Prefecture, Japan is a deep coastal bay located at the center of the Sanriku Rias coast and considered an economically and environmentally important asset. Here, we describe the first whole genome sequencing (WGS) study on the microbial community of the bay, where surface water samples were collected from three stations along its length to cover the entire bay; we preliminarily sequenced a 0.2 μm filter fraction among sequentially size-fractionated samples of 20.0, 5.0, 0.8 and 0.2 μm filters, targeting the free-living fraction only. From the 0.27–0.34 Gb WGS library, 0.9 × 106–1.2 × 106 reads from three sampling stations revealed 29 bacterial phyla (~80% of assigned reads), 3 archaeal phyla (~4%) and 59 eukaryotic phyla (~15%). Microbial diversity obtained from the WGS approach was compared with 16S rRNA gene results by mining WGS metagenomes, and we found similar estimates. The most frequently recovered bacterial sequences were Proteobacteria, predominantly comprised of 18.0–19.6% Planktomarina (Family Rhodobacteraceae) and 13.7–17.5% Candidatus Pelagibacter (Family Pelagibacterales). Other dominant bacterial genera, including Polaribacter (3.5–6.1%), Flavobacterium (1.8–2.6%), Sphingobacterium (1.4–1.6%) and Cellulophaga (1.4–2.0%), were members of Bacteroidetes and likely associated with the degradation and turnover of organic matter. The Marine Group I Archaea Nitrosopumilus was also detected. Remarkably, eukaryotic green alga Bathycoccus, Ostreococcus and Micromonas accounted for 8.8–15.2%, 3.6–4.9% and 2.1–3.1% of total read counts, respectively, highlighting their potential roles in the phytoplankton bloom after winter mixing.

  9. Fine structure of the free-living parakeet pineal in relation to the breeding cycle.

    Prasadan, T N; Kotak, V C

    1993-10-01

    Seasonal changes in the ultrastructure of the free-living Rose-Ringed Parakeet Psittacula krameri pineal were examined in relation to the sub-tropical environment and seasonal reproduction. Dark and light pinealocytes of the presumptive neuroendocrine cell line predominated, while supporting cells, ependymal cells, myelinated and non-myelinated nerve fibers with nerve endings, and regressed photoreceptor elements were also observed. Unlike in pineals of many animals, particularly mammals, the presence of dense-core vesicles (DCVs) with varying core density, and absence of clear vesicles and vacuoles with flocullent material, indicate the involvement of DCVs in the synthesis and secretion of pineals principle/s. In November (pre-breeding) when the day length registered a drop to LD 10:14, pinealocytes showed significantly decreased and smaller DCVs and mitochondria, nuclei with heterochromatin, and greater distribution of glycogen and lipid droplets, all indicating low pineal metabolic activity. During the shortest day regime from December to March, when the birds peaked breeding, the number and size of DCVs and mitochondria increased, and Golgi body-endoplasmic reticulum-lysosome complex (GERL) was very well defined. Images of DCVs suggested possible secretion of pineal principle/s by dissolution, and exocytosis. Coincidence of these features with peak gonadotrophic (circulating LH) and spermatogenic and testicular endocrine activity described previously suggested an active turnover of pineal products during this short day length regime when parakeets breed. In contrast, during the post-breeding season (April onwards), when the day-length increased to LD 13:11 and hypophyseal-gonadal function was down, nuclei and RER continued to show active profile, the Golgi body and associated complex were moderately seen, and the DCVs and mitochondria were significantly smaller and lesser. It is therefore probable that the pineal is an important relay to translate cues related

  10. Estimation of Physical Activity Energy Expenditure during Free-Living from Wrist Accelerometry in UK Adults.

    Tom White

    Full Text Available Wrist-worn accelerometers are emerging as the most common instrument for measuring physical activity in large-scale epidemiological studies, though little is known about the relationship between wrist acceleration and physical activity energy expenditure (PAEE.1695 UK adults wore two devices simultaneously for six days; a combined sensor and a wrist accelerometer. The combined sensor measured heart rate and trunk acceleration, which was combined with a treadmill test to yield a signal of individually-calibrated PAEE. Multi-level regression models were used to characterise the relationship between the two time-series, and their estimations were evaluated in an independent holdout sample. Finally, the relationship between PAEE and BMI was described separately for each source of PAEE estimate (wrist acceleration models and combined-sensing.Wrist acceleration explained 44-47% between-individual variance in PAEE, with RMSE between 34-39 J•min-1•kg-1. Estimations agreed well with PAEE in cross-validation (mean bias [95% limits of agreement]: 0.07 [-70.6:70.7] but overestimated in women by 3% and underestimated in men by 4%. Estimation error was inversely related to age (-2.3 J•min-1•kg-1 per 10y and BMI (-0.3 J•min-1•kg-1 per kg/m2. Associations with BMI were similar for all PAEE estimates (approximately -0.08 kg/m2 per J•min-1•kg-1.A strong relationship exists between wrist acceleration and PAEE in free-living adults, such that irrespective of the objective method of PAEE assessment, a strong inverse association between PAEE and BMI was observed.

  11. Video-Recorded Validation of Wearable Step Counters under Free-living Conditions.

    Toth, Lindsay P; Park, Susan; Springer, Cary M; Feyerabend, McKenzie D; Steeves, Jeremy A; Bassett, David R

    2018-06-01

    The purpose of this study was to determine the accuracy of 14-step counting methods under free-living conditions. Twelve adults (mean ± SD age, 35 ± 13 yr) wore a chest harness that held a GoPro camera pointed down at the feet during all waking hours for 1 d. The GoPro continuously recorded video of all steps taken throughout the day. Simultaneously, participants wore two StepWatch (SW) devices on each ankle (all programmed with different settings), one activPAL on each thigh, four devices at the waist (Fitbit Zip, Yamax Digi-Walker SW-200, New Lifestyles NL-2000, and ActiGraph GT9X (AG)), and two devices on the dominant and nondominant wrists (Fitbit Charge and AG). The GoPro videos were downloaded to a computer and researchers counted steps using a hand tally device, which served as the criterion method. The SW devices recorded between 95.3% and 102.8% of actual steps taken throughout the day (P > 0.05). Eleven step counting methods estimated less than 100% of actual steps; Fitbit Zip, Yamax Digi-Walker SW-200, and AG with the moving average vector magnitude algorithm on both wrists recorded 71% to 91% of steps (P > 0.05), whereas the activPAL, New Lifestyles NL-2000, and AG (without low-frequency extension (no-LFE), moving average vector magnitude) worn on the hip, and Fitbit Charge recorded 69% to 84% of steps (P 0.05), whereas the AG (LFE) on both wrists and the hip recorded 128% to 220% of steps (P < 0.05). Across all waking hours of 1 d, step counts differ between devices. The SW, regardless of settings, was the most accurate method of counting steps.

  12. Taxonomic profiles in metagenomic analyses of free-living microbial communities in the Ofunato Bay

    Reza, Md. Shaheed

    2018-04-27

    The Ofunato Bay in Iwate Prefecture, Japan is a deep coastal bay located at the center of the Sanriku Rias coast and considered an economically and environmentally important asset. Here, we describe the first whole genome sequencing (WGS) study on the microbial community of the bay, where surface water samples were collected from three stations along its length to cover the entire bay; we preliminarily sequenced a 0.2 μm filter fraction among sequentially size-fractionated samples of 20.0, 5.0, 0.8 and 0.2 μm filters, targeting the free-living fraction only. From the 0.27–0.34 Gb WGS library, 0.9 × 106–1.2 × 106 reads from three sampling stations revealed 29 bacterial phyla (~80% of assigned reads), 3 archaeal phyla (~4%) and 59 eukaryotic phyla (~15%). Microbial diversity obtained from the WGS approach was compared with 16S rRNA gene results by mining WGS metagenomes, and we found similar estimates. The most frequently recovered bacterial sequences were Proteobacteria, predominantly comprised of 18.0–19.6% Planktomarina (Family Rhodobacteraceae) and 13.7–17.5% Candidatus Pelagibacter (Family Pelagibacterales). Other dominant bacterial genera, including Polaribacter (3.5–6.1%), Flavobacterium (1.8–2.6%), Sphingobacterium (1.4–1.6%) and Cellulophaga (1.4–2.0%), were members of Bacteroidetes and likely associated with the degradation and turnover of organic matter. The Marine Group I Archaea Nitrosopumilus was also detected. Remarkably, eukaryotic green alga Bathycoccus, Ostreococcus and Micromonas accounted for 8.8–15.2%, 3.6–4.9% and 2.1–3.1% of total read counts, respectively, highlighting their potential roles in the phytoplankton bloom after winter mixing.

  13. High frequency of albinism and tumours in free-living birds around Chernobyl.

    Møller, A P; Bonisoli-Alquati, A; Mousseau, T A

    2013-09-18

    The effects of radioactive contamination on the phenotype of free-living organisms are poorly understood, mainly because of the difficulty of capturing the large numbers of individual specimens that are required to quantify rare events such as albinism and tumour formation. We hypothesized that the frequency of abnormalities like albinism and the frequency of radiation-induced diseases like cancer would increase with the level of background radiation, that the two markers of radiation would be positively correlated, and that the reduction in abundance of animals would be greater in species with a higher frequency of albinism and tumour formation, if these markers reliably reflected poor viability. Here we analyzed the frequency of albinistic feathers and tumours in a sample of 1669 birds captured during 2010-2012 at eight sites around Chernobyl that varied in level of background radiation from 0.02 to more than 200μSv/h. We recorded 111 cases of partial albinism and 25 cases of tumour formation. Nominal logistic models were used to partition the variance into components due to species and background radiation. Radiation was a strong predictor of the two markers in birds, with a small, but significant effect of species for albinism. The slope of the relationship between abundance and radiation in different bird species was significantly inversely correlated with the frequency of albinism and tumours, as was to be expected if a common underlying cause (i.e. radiation) affects both variables. These findings are consistent with the hypothesis that background radiation is a cause of albinism and tumours, that albinism and tumours are biomarkers of radiation exposure, and that high frequencies of albinism and tumours were present despite the low viability of birds with these conditions. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Experimental relationships between levels of corticosterone in plasma and feathers in a free-living bird.

    Fairhurst, Graham D; Marchant, Tracy A; Soos, Catherine; Machin, Karen L; Clark, Robert G

    2013-11-01

    Integrated measures of corticosterone (CORT), such as from feathers (CORTf), have intuitive appeal because they incorporate both the duration and amplitude of glucocorticoid secretion. An association between CORTf and plasma CORT has never been shown in wild birds, and it is unclear as to when and whether these measures should be correlated, given that they are fundamentally different yet related measures of physiology. We hypothesized that CORTf should correlate with instantaneous measurements of plasma CORT when the latter reflect sustained changes in the activity of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis. To test this, we experimentally manipulated levels of plasma CORT in wild nestling tree swallows (Tachycineta bicolor) using 5 day time-release CORT pellets, and measured plasma CORT and growth parameters before, during and at the end of hormone manipulation (days 7, 9 and 11 post-hatch, respectively). CORTf and plasma CORT were significantly positively related only when the latter was at its highest and most variable among individuals (day 9). A similar relationship was expected at day 11, but plasma CORT had returned to near-original levels. Nestlings with higher CORTf were smaller, lighter and less likely to fledge, but we did not detect seasonal effects on CORTf. Our results clearly demonstrate that CORTf from free-living birds can reflect plasma CORT, but correlations may not always be expected, especially if elevations in plasma CORT are relatively modest and of short duration. Our work suggests that CORTf is best used to study the activity of the HPA axis over relatively long time frames and can be used effectively to advance avian ecology.

  15. EVALUATION OF HEMATOLOGY AND BIOCHEMICAL PARAMETERS OF FREE-LIVING EUROPEAN BROWN HARE

    Miriam Trusinová

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available The objective of our study was to determine blood hematological and serum chemistry values for a population of free-living European brown hares and to investigate differences related to age. The European brown hare (Lepus europaeus is a species of hare naturally occurring in northern, central and western parts of Europe and southwestern Asia. The blood samples were collected from 25 hares (15 adults and 10 juveniles shot during regular hunting seasons in 4 hunting grounds located in Danube lowland. Following parameters were analyzed: WBC, LYM, GRA, RBC, HGB, HCT, MCV, MCH, MCHC on blood samples, and glucose, total proteins, urea, bilirubin, cholesterol, Ca, P, Na, K, Cl on serum. WBC count was higher in adults (2.86.109.l-1 than in young hares (2.71.109.l-1. RBC count and HGB concentration were higher in young hares (RBC=8.94.1012.l-1, HGB=184.43 g.l-1 than in adults (RBC=8.38.1012.l-1, HGB=177.59 g.l-1. No significant differences were found in other hematology parameters. Biochemical indicators of age were evaluated and an increased content of glucose in adult individuals was found (a = 9.39 mmol.l-1, j = 8.48 mmol.l-1. The increased level of urea in blood serum was observed as almost significant in juvenile individuals (a = 6.11 mmol.l-1, j = 6.94 mmol.l-1, but also reduction of bilirubin was observed (a = 5.19 mmol.l-1, j = 4.23 mmol.l-1. Other monitored biochemical parameters were fairly balanced. All evaluated hematology and serum chemistry parameters of brown hares were within the physiological range with relatively low differences.

  16. Free-living and captive turtles and tortoises as carriers of new Chlamydia spp.

    Mitura, Agata; Niemczuk, Krzysztof; Zaręba, Kinga; Zając, Magdalena; Laroucau, Karine; Szymańska-Czerwińska, Monika

    2017-01-01

    A variety of Chlamydia species belonging to the Chlamydiaceae family have been reported in reptilian hosts but scarce data about their occurrence in turtles and tortoises are available. In this study, research was conducted to acquire information on invasive alien species (IAS) of turtles and indigenous turtles and tortoises, living both free and in captivity, as possible reservoirs of Chlamydiaceae. Analysis of specimens (pharyngeal and cloacal swabs and tissues) from 204 turtles and tortoises revealed an overall Chlamydiaceae prevalence of 18.3% and 28.6% among free-living and captive animals respectively, with variable levels of shedding. Further testing conducted with a species-specific real-time PCR and microarray test was unsuccessful. Subsequently sequencing was applied to genotype the Chlamydiaceae-positive samples. Almost the full lengths of the 16S rRNA and ompA genes as well as the 16S-23S intergenic spacer (IGS) and 23S rRNA domain I were obtained for 14, 20 and 8 specimens respectively. Phylogenetic analysis of 16S rRNA amplicons revealed two distinct branches. Group 1 (10 specimens), specific to freshwater turtles and reported here for the first time, was most closely related to Chlamydia (C.) pneumoniae strains and the newly described Candidatus C. sanzinia. Group 2 (four specimens), detected in Testudo spp. samples, showed highest homology to C. pecorum strains but formed a separate sub-branch. Finally, molecular analysis conducted on positive samples together with their geographical distribution in places distant from each other strongly suggest that Group 1 specimens correspond to a new species in the Chlamydiaceae family. In-depth studies of Chlamydia spp. from turtles and tortoises are needed to further characterise these atypical strains and address arising questions about their pathogenicity and zoonotic potential.

  17. A new look into the small-scale dispersal of free-living marine nematodes

    Micheli C Thomas

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available We tested experimentally the hypothesis that prevailing locomotion/feeding strategies and body morphology may lead to more active dispersal of free-living marine nematodes, besides passive transport. Neutral Red was applied to the sediment inside cores and the red plume formed during the flood tide was divided into near, middle, and distant zones. At 0.5 m and 1 m from the stained cores, sampling nets were suspended 5 and 10 cm above the sediment-water interface. Dispersion behaviors were defined as a function of a the numbers of stained recaptured nematodes in comparison to their mean densities in the sediment, b movement in the sediment or swimming in the water column, and c body morphology. Tidal currents with average velocities of 9 cm/s resuspended the numerically dominant nematode taxa Sabatieria sp., Terschellingia longicaudata de Man, 1907, Metachromadora sp. and Viscosia sp. The recapture of stained nematodes as far as 2 m from the original stained cores showed that, despite their small body size, they can disperse through relatively large distances, either passively or actively, via the water column during a single tidal event. Recapture patterns in the sediment and in the water column indicate that nematode dispersal is directly influenced by their body morphology and swimming ability, and indirectly by their feeding strategies, which ultimately define their position in the sediment column. Besides stressing the role played by passive transport in the water column, our experiment additionally showed that mobility and feeding strategies also need to be considered as determinant of short-scale nematode dispersal.

  18. Basin-scale seasonal changes in marine free-living bacterioplankton community in the Ofunato Bay

    Reza, Md. Shaheed

    2018-04-26

    The Ofunato Bay in the northeastern Pacific Ocean area of Japan possesses the highest biodiversity of marine organisms in the world and has attracted much attention due to its economic and environmental importance. We report here a shotgun metagenomic analysis of the year-round variation in free-living bacterioplankton collected across the entire length of the bay. Phylogenetic differences among spring, summer, autumn and winter bacterioplankton suggested that members of Proteobacteria tended to decrease at high water temperatures and increase at low temperatures. It was revealed that Candidatus Pelagibacter varied seasonally, reaching as much as 60% of all sequences at the genus level in the surface waters during winter. This increase was more evident in the deeper waters, where they reached up to 75%. The relative abundance of Planktomarina also rose during winter and fell during summer. A significant component of the winter bacterioplankton community was Archaea (mainly represented by Nitrosopumilus), as their relative abundance was very low during spring and summer but high during winter. In contrast, Actinobacteria and Cyanobacteria appeared to be higher in abundance during high-temperature periods. It was also revealed that Bacteroidetes constituted a significant component of the summer bacterioplankton community, being the second largest bacterial phylum detected in the Ofunato Bay. Its members, notably Polaribacter and Flavobacterium, were found to be high in abundance during spring and summer, particularly in the surface waters. Principal component analysis and hierarchal clustering analyses showed that the bacterial communities in the Ofunato Bay changed seasonally, likely caused by the levels of organic matter, which would be deeply mixed with surface runoff in the winter.

  19. Social and environmental factors modulate leucocyte profiles in free-living Greylag geese (Anser anser

    Didone Frigerio

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Background Blood parameters such as haematocrit or leucocyte counts are indicators of immune status and health, which can be affected, in a complex way, by exogenous as well as endogenous factors. Additionally, social context is known to be among the most potent stressors in group living individuals, therefore potentially influencing haematological parameters. However, with few exceptions, this potential causal relationship received only moderate scientific attention. Methods In a free-living and individually marked population of the highly social and long-lived Greylag goose, Anser anser, we relate variation in haematocrit (HCT, heterophils to lymphocytes ratio (H/L and blood leucocyte counts to the following factors: intrinsic (sex, age, raising condition, i.e. goose- or hand-raised, social (pair-bond status, pair-bond duration and parental experience and environmental (biologically relevant periods, ambient temperature factors. Blood samples were collected repeatedly from a total of 105 focal birds during three biologically relevant seasons (winter flock, mating season, summer. Results We found significant relationships between haematological parameters and social as well as environmental factors. During the mating season, unpaired individuals had higher HCT compared to paired and family individuals and this pattern reversed in fall. Similarly, H/L ratio was positively related to pair-bond status in a seasonally dependent way, with highest values during mating and successful pairs had higher H/L ratio than unsuccessful ones. Also, absolute number of leucocytes tended to vary depending on raising condition in a seasonally dependent way. Discussion Haematology bears a great potential in ecological and behavioural studies on wild vertebrates. In sum, we found that HTC, H/L ratio and absolute number of leucocytes are modulated by social factors and conclude that they may be considered valid indicators of individual stress load.

  20. Free-living and captive turtles and tortoises as carriers of new Chlamydia spp.

    Agata Mitura

    Full Text Available A variety of Chlamydia species belonging to the Chlamydiaceae family have been reported in reptilian hosts but scarce data about their occurrence in turtles and tortoises are available. In this study, research was conducted to acquire information on invasive alien species (IAS of turtles and indigenous turtles and tortoises, living both free and in captivity, as possible reservoirs of Chlamydiaceae. Analysis of specimens (pharyngeal and cloacal swabs and tissues from 204 turtles and tortoises revealed an overall Chlamydiaceae prevalence of 18.3% and 28.6% among free-living and captive animals respectively, with variable levels of shedding. Further testing conducted with a species-specific real-time PCR and microarray test was unsuccessful. Subsequently sequencing was applied to genotype the Chlamydiaceae-positive samples. Almost the full lengths of the 16S rRNA and ompA genes as well as the 16S-23S intergenic spacer (IGS and 23S rRNA domain I were obtained for 14, 20 and 8 specimens respectively. Phylogenetic analysis of 16S rRNA amplicons revealed two distinct branches. Group 1 (10 specimens, specific to freshwater turtles and reported here for the first time, was most closely related to Chlamydia (C. pneumoniae strains and the newly described Candidatus C. sanzinia. Group 2 (four specimens, detected in Testudo spp. samples, showed highest homology to C. pecorum strains but formed a separate sub-branch. Finally, molecular analysis conducted on positive samples together with their geographical distribution in places distant from each other strongly suggest that Group 1 specimens correspond to a new species in the Chlamydiaceae family. In-depth studies of Chlamydia spp. from turtles and tortoises are needed to further characterise these atypical strains and address arising questions about their pathogenicity and zoonotic potential.

  1. Effects of hydrocarbon contamination on a free living marine nematode community: Results from microcosm experiments

    Mahmoudi, E.; Essid, N.; Beyrem, H.; Hedfi, A.; Boufahja, F.; Aissa, P. [Laboratoire de Biosurveillance de l' Environnement, Zarzouna (Tunisia). Faculte des Sciences de Bizerte; Vitiello, P. [Centre d' Oceanologie de Marseille (France)

    2005-11-15

    Anthropogenic inputs of crude and refined petroleum hydrocarbons into the sea require knowledge of the effects of these contaminants on the receiving assemblages of organisms. A microcosm experiment was carried out to study the influence of diesel on a free living nematode community of a Tunisian lagoon. Sediments were contaminated by diesel that ranged in concentration from 0.5 to 20 mg diesel kg{sup -1} dry weight (dw), and effects were examined after 90 days. Gradual changes in community structure were revealed depending on the quantity of diesel administrated. In the medium (1 mg diesel kg{sup -1} and 5 mg diesel kg{sup -1} (dw)) and high (10 mg diesel kg{sup -1}, 15 mg diesel kg{sup -1} and 20 mg kg{sup -1} (dw)) treated microcosms, most univariate measures, including diversity and species richness, decreased significantly with increasing level of diesel contamination whereas nematode assemblage from the low treated microcosm (0.5 mg diesel kg{sup -1} (dw)) remained unaffected. Results from multivariate analyses of the species abundance data demonstrated that responses of nematode species to the diesel treatments were varied: Chaetonema sp. was eliminated at all doses tested and seemed to be intolerant species to diesel contamination; Pomponema sp. and Oncholaimus campylocercoides were significantly affected at all diesel contamination levels but they were not eliminated, these species were categorized as 'diesel-sensitive'; Hypodontolaimus colesi, Daptonema trabeculosum and Daptonema fallax which significantly increased respectively at 0.5, 1 and 5 mg diesel kg{sup -1} (dw) concentrations and appeared to be 'opportunistic' species at these doses whereas Marylynnia stekhoveni which increased at all high doses (10, 15 and 20 mg diesel kg{sup -1} (dw)) seemed to be a 'diesel-resistant' species. (author)

  2. The bacteriology of the small intestinal mucosa of free-living reindeer

    Wenche Sørmo

    1994-12-01

    Full Text Available Bacteria in close associaton with the intestinal mucosa are thought to protect the mucosa from pathogenic microorganisms. The pH of the small intestinal mucosa and the viable populations of aerobic and anaerobic bacteria associated with the proximal and distal jejunal mucosa, were measured in four free-living reindeer in winter. The anaerobic bacterial populations were characterized. The median pH of the mucosa of the duodenum was 6.6 (n=4 at point 0.2 m from the pyloric sphincter. The mucosal pH increased along the length of the intestine to 8.3 at 14 m and then decreased to 7.9 at 19.8 m from the pyloric sphincter. Examination by transmission electron microscopy and cultivation techniques failed to reveal any bacteria on the mucosa of the proximal jejunum in two of the animals. In two other reindeer the median anaerobic bacterial densities in the proximal jejunum ranged from 25-2500 cells/g mucosa. The median anaerobic bacterial populations in the distal jejunum ranged from 80 to 20000 bacteria/g mucosa (n=4. The anaerobic population of bacteria in the proximal jejunum was dominated by streptococci and unidentified gram positive rods. Bacteroidaceae, streptococci and unidentified gram positive rods were common in the distal jejunum. The low density and the species diversity of bacteria in the small intestine suggests that these microorganisms are inhibited by components in the natural winter diet of reindeer. Bacteria evidently play a minor role in protection of the mucosa of reindeer in winter.

  3. Genome sequence of the Fleming strain of Micrococcus luteus, a simple free- living actinobacterium

    Young, Michael; Artsatbanov, Vladislav; Beller, Harry R.; Chandra, Govind; Chater, Keith F.; Dover, Lynn G.; Goh, Ee-Been; Kahan, Tamar; Kaprelyants, Arseny S.; Kyrpides, Nikos; Lapidus, Alla; Lowry, Stephen R.; Lykidis, Athanasios; Mahillon, Jacques; Markowitz, Viktor; Mavrommatis, Konstantinos; Mukamolova, Galina V.; Oren, Aharon; Rokem, J. Stefan; Smith, Margaret C. M.; Young, Danielle I.; Greenblatt, Charles L.

    2009-11-01

    Micrococcus luteus (NCTC2665, Fleming strain) has one of the smallest genomes of free living actinobacteria sequenced to date, comprising a single circular chromosome of 2,501,097 bp (G+C content 73%) predicted to encode 2403 proteins. The genome shows extensive synteny with that of the closely related organism, Kocuria rhizophila, from which it was taxonomically separated relatively recently. Despite its small size, the genome harbors 73 IS elements, almost all of which are closely related to elements found in other actinobacteria. An IS element is inserted into the rrs gene of one of only two rrn operons found in M. luteus. The genome encodes only four sigma factors and fourteen response regulators, indicative of adaptation to a rather strict ecological niche (mammalian skin). The high sensitivity of M. luteus to {Beta}-lactam antibiotics may result from the presence of a reduced set of penicillin binding proteins and the absence of a wblC gene, which plays an important role in antibiotic resistance in other actinobacteria. Consistent with the restricted range of compounds it can use as a sole source of carbon for energy and growth, M. luteus has a minimal complement of genes concerned with carbohydrate transport and metabolism and its inability to utilize glucose as a sole carbon source may be due to the apparent absence of a gene encoding glucokinase. Uniquely among characterized bacteria, M. luteus appears to be able to metabolize glycogen only via trehalose, and to make trehalose only via glycogen. It has very few genes associated with secondary metabolism. In contrast to other actinobacteria, M. luteus encodes only one resuscitation-promoting factor (Rpf) required for emergence from dormancy and its complement of other dormancy-related proteins is also much reduced. M. luteus is capable of long-chain alkene biosynthesis, which is of interest for advanced biofuel production; a three gene cluster essential for this metabolism has been identified in the genome.

  4. Uncovering different masking factors on wrist skin temperature rhythm in free-living subjects.

    Antonio Martinez-Nicolas

    Full Text Available Most circadian rhythms are controlled by a major pacemaker located in the hypothalamic suprachiasmatic nucleus. Some of these rhythms, called marker rhythms, serve to characterize the timing of the internal temporal order. However, these variables are susceptible to masking effects as the result of activity, body position, light exposure, environmental temperature and sleep. Recently, wrist skin temperature (WT has been proposed as a new index for evaluating circadian system status. In light of previous evidence suggesting the important relationship between WT and core body temperature regulation, the aim of this work was to purify the WT pattern in order to obtain its endogenous rhythm with the application of multiple demasking procedures. To this end, 103 subjects (18-24 years old were recruited and their WT, activity, body position, light exposure, environmental temperature and sleep were recorded under free-living conditions for 1 week. WT demasking by categories or intercepts was applied to simulate a "constant routine" protocol (awakening, dim light, recumbent position, low activity and warm environmental temperature. Although the overall circadian pattern of WT was similar regardless of the masking effects, its amplitude was the rhythmic parameter most affected by environmental conditions. The acrophase and mesor were determined to be the most robust parameters for characterizing this rhythm. In addition, a circadian modulation of the masking effect was found for each masking variable. WT rhythm exhibits a strong endogenous component, despite the existence of multiple external influences. This was evidenced by simultaneously eliminating the influence of activity, body position, light exposure, environmental temperature and sleep. We therefore propose that it could be considered a valuable and minimally-invasive means of recording circadian physiology in ambulatory conditions.

  5. [i]Legionella spp[/i]., amoebae and not-fermenting Gram negative bacteria in an Italian university hospital water system

    Pasqualina Laganà

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available [b]Introduction. [/b]In hospital and other health care facilities, contamination of water systems by potentially infectious microorganisms, such as bacteria, viruses and protozoa, is a source of nosocomial infections, which may originate fromcolonization of water pipes, cooling towers, spa pools, taps, showers and water supplies. [b]Objective. [/b]The study focuses on the occurrence of [i]Legionella spp.[/i], free-living amoebae and non-fermenting Gram-negative microorganisms in a University hospital water system located in the town of Messina (Sicily, Italy, which had never been examined previously. Materials and Methods. From January 2008 – March 2009, hot tap water samples were collected from 10 wards.[i] Legionella spp[/i]. recovered on selective culture medium were identified by microagglutination latex test; free-living amoebae were cultured using [i]Escherichia coli [/i]as a food source. Non-fermenting Gram negative microorganisms were identified by API 20 NE strips. [b]Results.[/b] [i]Legionella spp.[/i] were found in 33.33% of the samples. [i]L. pneumophila[/i] serogroup 1 was recovered from the Laboratory Diagnostic and Anaesthesia-Neurology Wards, with a peak of 3.5 × 10[sup]4[/sup] cfu/L in May 2008. [i]L. pneumophila[/i] serogroups 2–14 were found in the Othorhinolaryngology, Pathologic Anatomy, Paediatrics and Surgery Wards, and peaked (4 × 10[sup]4[/sup] cfu/L in April 2008. Pseudomonadaceae and Hyphomycetes were also detected. Legionella spp. were recovered from samples positive for non-pathogenic amoebae [i]Hartmannella spp[/i]. [b]Conclusion.[/b] This first study of a Messina hospital water system suggested potential health risks related to the detection of [i]Hartmannella spp[/i]., as reservoirs for[i] Legionella spp.[/i], and Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a Gram negative non-fermenting bacterium frequently causing nosocomial pneumonia. The urgent need for monitoring programmes and prevention measures to ensure hospital water

  6. The Evolution of a distributed operating system (Amoeba)

    van Renesse, Robbert; Tanenbaum, Andrew S.; Mullender, Sape J.

    1989-01-01

    AMOEBA is a research project to build a true distributed operating system using the object model. Under the COST11-ter MANDIS project this work was extended to cover wide-area networks. Besides describing the system, this paper discusses the successive versions in the implementation of its model,

  7. Checklist, diversity and distribution of testate amoebae in Chile.

    Fernández, Leonardo D; Lara, Enrique; Mitchell, Edward A D

    2015-10-01

    Bringing together more than 170 years of data, this study represents the first attempt to construct a species checklist and analyze the diversity and distribution of testate amoebae in Chile, a country that encompasses the southwestern region of South America, countless islands and part of the Antarctic. In Chile, known diversity includes 416 testate amoeba taxa (64 genera, 352 infrageneric taxa), 24 of which are here reported for the first time. Species-accumulation plots show that in Chile, the number of testate amoeba species reported has been continually increasing since the mid-19th century without leveling off. Testate amoebae have been recorded in 37 different habitats, though they are more diverse in peatlands and rainforest soils. Only 11% of species are widespread in continental Chile, while the remaining 89% of the species exhibit medium or short latitudinal distribution ranges. Also, species composition of insular Chile and the Chilean Antarctic territory is a depauperated subset of that found in continental Chile. Nearly, the 10% of the species reported here are endemic to Chile and many of them are distributed only within the so-called Chilean biodiversity hotspot (ca. 25° S-47° S). These findings are here thoroughly discussed in a biogeographical and evolutionary context. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  8. The genome of the social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum

    Eichinger, L; Pachebat, J A; Glöckner, G

    2005-01-01

    The social amoebae are exceptional in their ability to alternate between unicellular and multicellular forms. Here we describe the genome of the best-studied member of this group, Dictyostelium discoideum. The gene-dense chromosomes of this organism encode approximately 12,500 predicted proteins,...

  9. Advances in the knowledge of amphizoic amoebae infecting fish

    Dyková, Iva; Lom, Jiří

    2004-01-01

    Roč. 51, 2/3 (2004), s. 81-97 ISSN 0015-5683 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR IAA6022202 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z6022909 Keywords : amphizoic amoebae * fish hosts * review Subject RIV: EA - Cell Biology Impact factor: 0.837, year: 2004

  10. Development of a Multisensory Wearable System for Monitoring Cigarette Smoking Behavior in Free-Living Conditions

    Masudul Haider Imtiaz

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents the development and validation of a novel multi-sensory wearable system (Personal Automatic Cigarette Tracker v2 or PACT2.0 for monitoring of cigarette smoking in free-living conditions. The contributions of the PACT2.0 system are: (1 the implementation of a complete sensor suite for monitoring of all major behavioral manifestations of cigarette smoking (lighting events, hand-to-mouth gestures, and smoke inhalations; (2 a miniaturization of the sensor hardware to enable its applicability in naturalistic settings; and (3 an introduction of new sensor modalities that may provide additional insight into smoking behavior e.g., Global Positioning System (GPS, pedometer and Electrocardiogram(ECG or provide an easy-to-use alternative (e.g., bio-impedance respiration sensor to traditional sensors. PACT2.0 consists of three custom-built devices: an instrumented lighter, a hand module, and a chest module. The instrumented lighter is capable of recording the time and duration of all lighting events. The hand module integrates Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU and a Radio Frequency (RF transmitter to track the hand-to-mouth gestures. The module also operates as a pedometer. The chest module monitors the breathing (smoke inhalation patterns (inductive and bio-impedance respiratory sensors, cardiac activity (ECG sensor, chest movement (three-axis accelerometer, hand-to-mouth proximity (RF receiver, and captures the geo-position of the subject (GPS receiver. The accuracy of PACT2.0 sensors was evaluated in bench tests and laboratory experiments. Use of PACT2.0 for data collection in the community was validated in a 24 h study on 40 smokers. Of 943 h of recorded data, 98.6% of the data was found usable for computer analysis. The recorded information included 549 lighting events, 522/504 consumed cigarettes (from lighter data/self-registered data, respectively, 20,158/22,207 hand-to-mouth gestures (from hand IMU/proximity sensor, respectively

  11. Osteoarthritis of the temporo-mandibular joint in free-living Soay sheep on St Kilda.

    Arthur, Colin; Watt, Kathryn; Nussey, Daniel H; Pemberton, Josephine M; Pilkington, Jill G; Herman, Jeremy S; Timmons, Zena L; Clements, Dylan N; Scott, Philip R

    2015-01-01

    Osteoarthritis (OA) is a common degenerative disease of synovial joints with the potential to cause pathology and welfare issues in both domestic and wild ruminants. Previous work has identified OA of the elbow joint in domestic sheep, but the prevalence of OA of the jaw and in particular the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) has not been previously reported. Following up a previous report of a single case of TMJ OA in a free-living population of Soay sheep on St Kilda in the Outer Hebrides, an archive of 2736 jaw bones collected from this population between 1985 and 2010 was surveyed. Evidence of TMJ OA was found in 35 sheep. Of these, 15 cases were unilateral (11 right side, 4 left side) and the remaining 20 were bilateral. TMJ pathology was much more common in females than males: only 3/35 cases were in males, with overall prevalence at 2.3% for females and 0.2% in males. Radiographic examination of TMJ with OA revealed extensive bone re-modelling with osteophytosis, particularly of the condyle of the mandible. There was a highly significant age-dependence in TMJ OA incidence among age classes: 30/35 cases occurred in geriatric sheep (aged 7 years or more; 11.1% prevalence within this age class), four in adults (2-6 years old; 0.9% prevalence), one in yearlings (0.3% prevalence) and none in lambs. The low incidence in males was confounded by sex differences in longevity: while 18% of females sampled died in the geriatric age class, only 2% of males did so. Although the low prevalence of the pathology limited the ability to test its association with other traits, it was possible to examine relationships with reproductive performance measures amongst geriatric females with and without TMJ OA. Although there were trends towards lower fecundity and lower lamb birth weight in the breeding season prior to death, these were not statistically significant. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Free-living protozoa in two unchlorinated drinking water supplies identified by phylogenic analysis of 18S rRNA gene sequences

    Valster, R.M.; Wullings, B.A.; Bakker, G.; Smidt, H.; Kooij, van der D.

    2009-01-01

    Free-living protozoan communities in water supplies may include hosts for Legionella pneumophila and other undesired bacteria and also pathogens. This study aimed at identifying free-living protozoa in two unchlorinated groundwater supplies using cultivation-independent molecular approaches. For

  13. Exposure of free-living jaguars to Toxoplasma gondii, Neospora caninum and Sarcocystis neurona in the Brazilian Pantanal

    Selma Samiko Miyazaki Onuma

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Toxoplasma gondii, Neospora caninum and Sarcocystis neurona are related apicomplexan parasites that cause reproductive and neurological disorders in a wide range of domestic and wild animals. In the present study, the immunofluorescence antibody test (IFAT was used to investigate the presence of antibodies against T. gondii, N. caninum and S. neurona in the sera of 11 free-living jaguars (Panthera onca in two protected areas in the Pantanal region of Mato Grosso state, Brazil. Ten jaguars (90.9% showed seropositivity for T. gondii, eight (72.7% for S. neurona, and seven (63.6% for N. caninum antigens. Our findings reveal exposure of jaguars to these related coccidian parasites and circulation of these pathogens in this wild ecosystem. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first serological detection of N. caninum and S. neurona in free-living jaguars.

  14. Exposure of free-living jaguars to Toxoplasma gondii, Neospora caninum and Sarcocystis neurona in the Brazilian Pantanal.

    Onuma, Selma Samiko Miyazaki; Melo, Andréia Lima Tomé; Kantek, Daniel Luis Zanella; Crawshaw-Junior, Peter Gransden; Morato, Ronaldo Gonçalves; May-Júnior, Joares Adenílson; Pacheco, Thábata dos Anjos; Aguiar, Daniel Moura de

    2014-01-01

    Toxoplasma gondii, Neospora caninum and Sarcocystis neurona are related apicomplexan parasites that cause reproductive and neurological disorders in a wide range of domestic and wild animals. In the present study, the immunofluorescence antibody test (IFAT) was used to investigate the presence of antibodies against T. gondii, N. caninum and S. neurona in the sera of 11 free-living jaguars (Panthera onca) in two protected areas in the Pantanal region of Mato Grosso state, Brazil. Ten jaguars (90.9%) showed seropositivity for T. gondii, eight (72.7%) for S. neurona, and seven (63.6%) for N. caninum antigens. Our findings reveal exposure of jaguars to these related coccidian parasites and circulation of these pathogens in this wild ecosystem. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first serological detection of N. caninum and S. neurona in free-living jaguars.

  15. Response of free-living soil protozoa and microorganisms to elevated atmospheric CO2 and presence of mycorrhiza

    Rønn, R.; Gavito, M.; Larsen, J.

    2002-01-01

    with or without the presence of the arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungus Glomus caledonium. It was hypothesised that (1) the populations of free-living soil protozoa would increase as a response to elevated CO2, (2) the effect of elevated CO2 on protozoa would be moderated by the presence of mycorrhiza and (3......) the presence of arbuscular mycorrhiza would affect soil protozoan numbers regardless of atmospheric CO2. After 3 weeks growth there was no difference in bacterial numbers (direct counts) in soil, but the number of free-living bacterial-feeding protozoa was significantly higher under elevated CO2...... elevated CO2 suggest increased bacterial production, whereas the lower populations in response to presence of mycorrhiza suggest a depressing effect on bacterial production by AM colonisation. (C) 2002 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved....

  16. Comparison of cell-specific activity between free-living and attached bacteria using isolates and natural assemblages

    Grossart, H.P.; Tang, K.W.; Kiørboe, Thomas

    2007-01-01

    Marine snow aggregates are microbial hotspots that support high bacterial abundance and activities. We conducted laboratory experiments to compare cell-specific bacterial protein production (BPP) and protease activity between free-living and attached bacteria. Natural bacterial assemblages attached...... bacteria increasing their metabolism upon attachment to surfaces. In subsequent experiments, we used four strains of marine snow bacteria isolates to test the hypothesis that bacteria could up- and down-regulate their metabolism while on and off an aggregate. The protease activity of attached bacteria...... to model aggregates (agar spheres) had threefold higher BPP and two orders of magnitude higher protease activity than their free-living counterpart. These observations could be explained by preferential colonization of the agar spheres by bacteria with inherently higher metabolic activity and/or individual...

  17. Killing the dead: chemotherapeutic strategies against free-living cyst-forming protists (Acanthamoeba sp. and Balamuthia mandrillaris).

    Siddiqui, Ruqaiyyah; Aqeel, Yousuf; Khan, Naveed Ahmed

    2013-01-01

    The opportunist free-living protists such as Acanthamoeba spp. and Balamuthia mandrillaris have become a serious threat to human life. As most available drugs target functional aspects of pathogens, the ability of free-living protists to transform into metabolically inactive cyst forms presents a challenge in treatment. It is hoped, that the development of broad spectrum antiprotist agents acting against multiple cyst-forming protists to provide target-directed inhibition will offer a viable drug strategy in the treatment of these rare infections. Here, we present a comprehensive report on upcoming drug targets, with emphasis on cyst wall biosynthesis along with the related biochemistry of encystment pathways, as we strive to bring ourselves a step closer to being able to combat these deadly diseases. © 2013 The Author(s) Journal of Eukaryotic Microbiology © 2013 International Society of Protistologists.

  18. Co-occurrence analysis of microbial taxa in the Atlantic Ocean reveals high connectivity in the free-living bacterioplankton

    Mathias eMilici

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available We determined the taxonomic composition of the bacterioplankton of the epipelagic zone of the Atlantic Ocean along a latitudinal transect (51°S – 47°N using Illumina sequencing of the V5-V6 region of the 16S rRNA gene and inferred co-occurrence networks. Bacterioplankon community composition was distinct for Longhurstian provinces and water depth. Free-living microbial communities (between 0.22-3 µm were dominated by highly abundant and ubiquitous taxa with streamlined genomes (e.g. SAR11, SAR86, OM1, Prochlorococcus and could clearly be separated from particle-associated communities which were dominated by Bacteroidetes, Planktomycetes, Verrucomicrobia and Roseobacters. From a total of 369 different communities we then inferred co-occurrence networks for each size fraction and depth layer of the plankton between bacteria and between bacteria and phototrophic micro-eukaryotes. The inferred networks showed a reduction of edges in the deepest layer of the photic zone. Networks comprised of free-living bacteria had a larger amount of connections per OTU when compared to the particle associated communities throughout the water column. Negative correlations accounted for roughly one third of the total edges in the free-living communities at all depths, while they decreased with depth in the particle associated communities where they amounted for roughly 10% of the total in the last part of the epipelagic zone. Co-occurrence networks of bacteria with phototrophic micro-eukaryotes were not taxon-specific, and dominated by mutual exclusion (~60%. The data show a high degree of specialization to micro-environments in the water column and highlight the importance of interdependencies particularly between free-living bacteria in the upper layers of the epipelagic zone.

  19. Relationship between the Intracellular Integrity and the Morphology of the Capsular Envelope in Attached and Free-Living Marine Bacteria

    Heissenberger, A.; Leppard, G. G.; Herndl, G. J.

    1996-01-01

    The integrity of the intracellular structures and the presence and dimension of the capsular envelope were investigated in marine snow-associated and marine free-living bacteria by transmission electron microscopy and special fixation techniques. Three categories depending on the presence of internal structures were differentiated. In marine snow, 51% of the marine snow-associated bacterial community was considered intact, 26% had a partly degraded internal structure, and 23% were empty with ...

  20. PhaP phasins play a principal role in poly-β-hydroxybutyrate accumulation in free-living Bradyrhizobium japonicum

    Yoshida, Ken-ichi; Takemoto, Yuki; Sotsuka, Takayuki; Tanaka, Kosei; Takenaka, Shinji

    2013-01-01

    Background Bradyrhizobium japonicum USDA110, a soybean symbiont, is capable of accumulating a large amount of poly-β-hydroxybutyrate (PHB) as an intracellular carbon storage polymer during free-living growth. Within the genome of USDA110, there are a number of genes annotated as paralogs of proteins involved in PHB metabolism, including its biosynthesis, degradation, and stabilization of its granules. They include two phbA paralogs encoding 3-ketoacyl-CoA thiolase, two phbB paralogs encoding ...

  1. The cumulative effect of small dietary changes may significantly improve nutritional intakes in free-living children and adults

    Bornet , Francis; Paineau , Damien; Beaufils , François; Boulier , Alain; Cassuto , Dominique-Adèle; Chwalow , Judith; Combris , Pierre; Couet , Charles; Jouret , Béatrice; Lafay , Lionel; Laville , Martine; Mahé , Sylvain; Ricour , Claude; Romon , Monique; Simon , Chantal

    2010-01-01

    Abstract Background/Objectives: The ELPAS study was an 8-month randomized controlled dietary modification trial designed to test the hypothesis that family dietary coaching would improve nutritional intakes and weight control in 2026 free-living children and parents (Paineau et al., 2008). It resulted in significant nutritional changes, with beneficial effects on body mass index in adults. In these ancillary analyses, we investigated dietary changes throughout the intervention. ...

  2. Measurement of glucose utilization by Pseudomonas fluorescens that are free-living and that are attached to surfaces

    Fletcher, M.

    1986-01-01

    The assimilation and respiration of glucose by attached and free-living Pseudomonas fluorescens were compared. The attachment surfaces were polyvinylidene fluoride, polyethylene, and glass. Specific uptake of [ 1 C]glucose was determined after bacterial biomass was measured by (1) microscopic counts or (2) prelabelling of cells by providing [ 3 H]leucine as substrate, followed by dual-labelling scintillation counting. The glucose concentration was 1.4, 3.5, 5.5, 7.6, or 9.7 μM. Glucose assimilation by cells which became detached from the surfaces during incubation with glucose was also measured after the detached cells were collected by filtration. The composition of the substratum had no effect on the amount of glucose assimilated by attached cells. Glucose assimilation by attached cells exceeded that by free-living cells by a factor of between 2 and 5 or more, and respiration of glucose by surface-associated cells was greater than that by free-living bacteria. Glucose assimilation by detached cells was greater than that by attached bacteria. Measurements of biomass by microscopic counts gave more consistent results than those obtained with dual-labelling, but in general, results obtained by both methods were corroborative

  3. Seasonal variation in population density and heterotrophic activity of attached and free-living bacteria in coastal waters

    Iriberri, J.; Unanue, M.; Barcina, I.; Egea, L.

    1987-01-01

    The abundance and heterotrophic activity of attached and free-living bacteria was examined seasonally in coastal water. Heterotrophic activity was determined by the uptake of [ 14 C]glucose. The density of attached bacteria was always minor, not showing a seasonal variation, whereas the free-living bacteria were more numerous and showed a marked seasonal variation, their density being higher under warmer conditions. The contribution of the attached bacteria to the total assimilation of [ 14 C]glucose was lower than that of the free-living bacteria, neither of them showing a seasonal variation. On a cellular basis, attached bacteria were more active, since they assimilated more [ 14 C]glucose and showed, under warmer conditions, a higher cellular volume. The authors consider that the factors responsible for these observations were the amount and quality of the particulate material, the different availability of organic matter for the two types of bacteria, and in a fundamental way, the variation in water temperature

  4. A comparison of the Actigraph GT1M and GT3X accelerometers under standardized and free-living conditions

    Kaminsky, Leonard A; Ozemek, Cemal

    2012-01-01

    Prior to 2008, data collection from Actigraph accelerometers was only possible in the uniaxial mode. In 2009, Actigraph released the GT3X, which allows triaxial data collection. The purpose of this study was to determine if data collected by the GT3X in the uniaxial mode are comparable to its predecessor, the GT1M, under both standardized and free-living conditions. Thirty-four subjects (17 women and 17 men) provided complete data for this study. Subjects wore the accelerometers (one GT1M and one GT3X) on their waistband in line with the right and left anterior axillary lines. Each subject walked on a treadmill at speeds of 2.4, 3.2, 4.0, 4.8, 5.6 and 6.4 km h −1 for 5 min each, and then continued to wear both accelerometers for all waking hours for three consecutive days. Mean steady-state activity counts min –1 for both accelerometers were not statistically different for the standardized treadmill walking speeds and for mean minutes/day and activity counts/day for intensity classifications under the free-living condition. Based on comparisons made from both standardized walking speeds and free-living conditions, it is reasonable to compare data derived from either the GT1M or GT3X when collected in the uniaxial mode. (paper)

  5. Spatial and temporal distribution of free-living protozoa in aquatic environments of a Brazilian semi-arid region

    Maria Luisa Quinino de Medeiros

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Free-living protozoa organisms are distributed in aquatic environments and vary widely in both qualitative and quantitative terms. The unique ecological functions they exhibit in their habitats help to maintain the dynamic balance of these environments. Despite their wide range and abundance, studies on geographical distribution and ecology, when compared to other groups, are still scarce. This study aimed to identify and record the occurrence of free-living protozoa at three points in Piancó-Piranhas-Açu basin, in a semi-arid area of Rio Grande do Norte (RN state, and to relate the occurrence of taxa with variations in chlorophyll a, pH and temperature in the environments. Samples were collected in the Armando Ribeiro Gonçalves Dam, from two lentic environments upstream and a lotic ecosystem downstream. Sixty-five taxa of free-living protozoa were found. The Student's t-test showed significant inter-variable differences (p <0.05. Similar protozoan species were recorded under different degrees of trophic status according to chlorophyll a concentrations, suggesting the organisms identified are not ideal for indicating trophic level. We hypothesize that food availability, the influence of lentic and lotic systems and the presence of aquatic macrophytes influenced protozoan dynamics during the study period.

  6. Calibration of the food list and portion sizes of a food frequency questionnaire applied to free-living elderly people.

    Pfrimer, Karina; Sartorelli, Daniela Saes; Rosa, Flavia Troncon; Mendes Resende, Cristina Maria; Viera, Daniela Vieira Pallos; Rabito, Estela Iraci; Scagliusi, Fernanda Baeza; Moriguti, Eny Kiyomi Uemora; Monteiro, Jaqueline Pontes; Ferriolli, Eduardo

    2013-05-01

    To calibrate the food list and relative portion sizes of a food frequency questionnaire (FFQ) for application to a free-living, healthy, elderly population. Cross-sectional study. One hundred free-living, healthy participants, aged from 60 to 75 y, randomly selected from among individuals in the area served by the Family Health Program, School of Medicine of Ribeirao Preto, University of São Paulo. A Food Frequency Questionnaire (FFQ) and a Diet History Questionnaire (DH) were applied by trained dietitians. Each food item of the FFQ had its portion size recalculated according to the percentiles referenced by the volunteers in the DH (25th = small, 50th = medium, and 75th = large). The list of foods and portion sizes of the original FFQ and those obtained by the application of the DH were compared. The percent contribution of energy, protein, fat, carbohydrate, folic acid, vitamin C, calcium, and fiber of each food item mentioned in the FFQ was determined from the data obtained by the application of the DH. FFQ, as compared with the DH, provided good estimation of the intake of protein, calcium, folic acid, and fiber (paired t test P food list were found to be appropriate for application to healthy, urban, free-living elderly people in Ribeirao Preto, Brazil. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Twenty-four-hour urinary water-soluble vitamin levels correlate with their intakes in free-living Japanese schoolchildren.

    Tsuji, Tomiko; Fukuwatari, Tsutomu; Sasaki, Satoshi; Shibata, Katsumi

    2011-02-01

    To examine the association between 24 h urinary water-soluble vitamin levels and their intakes in free-living Japanese schoolchildren. All foods consumed for four consecutive days were recorded accurately by a weighed food record. A single 24 h urine sample was collected on the fourth day, and the urinary levels of water-soluble vitamins were measured. An elementary school in Inazawa City, Japan. A total of 114 healthy, free-living, Japanese elementary-school children aged 10-12 years. The urinary level of each water-soluble vitamin was correlated positively to its mean intake in the past 2-4 d (vitamin B1: r = 0·42, P vitamin B2: r = 0·43, P vitamin B6: r = 0·49, P vitamin C: r = 0·39, P vitamin B12 (r = 0·10, P = NS). Estimated mean intakes of water-soluble vitamins calculated using urinary levels and recovery rates were 97-102 % of their 3 d mean intake, except for vitamin B12 (79 %). The results show that urinary levels of water-soluble vitamins, except for vitamin B12, reflected their recent intakes in free-living Japanese schoolchildren and could be used as a potential biomarker to estimate mean vitamin intake.

  8. Construction and simulation of the Bradyrhizobium diazoefficiens USDA110 metabolic network: a comparison between free-living and symbiotic states.

    Yang, Yi; Hu, Xiao-Pan; Ma, Bin-Guang

    2017-02-28

    Bradyrhizobium diazoefficiens is a rhizobium able to convert atmospheric nitrogen into ammonium by establishing mutualistic symbiosis with soybean. It has been recognized as an important parent strain for microbial agents and is widely applied in agricultural and environmental fields. In order to study the metabolic properties of symbiotic nitrogen fixation and the differences between a free-living cell and a symbiotic bacteroid, a genome-scale metabolic network of B. diazoefficiens USDA110 was constructed and analyzed. The metabolic network, iYY1101, contains 1031 reactions, 661 metabolites, and 1101 genes in total. Metabolic models reflecting free-living and symbiotic states were determined by defining the corresponding objective functions and substrate input sets, and were further constrained by high-throughput transcriptomic and proteomic data. Constraint-based flux analysis was used to compare the metabolic capacities and the effects on the metabolic targets of genes and reactions between the two physiological states. The results showed that a free-living rhizobium possesses a steady state flux distribution for sustaining a complex supply of biomass precursors while a symbiotic bacteroid maintains a relatively condensed one adapted to nitrogen-fixation. Our metabolic models may serve as a promising platform for better understanding the symbiotic nitrogen fixation of this species.

  9. Raman spectroscopic study on the excystation process in a single unicellular organism amoeba (Acanthamoeba polyphaga)

    Lin, Yu-Chung; Perevedentseva, Elena; Cheng, Chia-Liang

    2015-05-01

    An in vivo Raman spectroscopic study of amoeba (Acanthamoeba polyphaga) is presented. The changes of the spectra during the amoeba cyst activation and excystation are analyzed. The spectra show the changes of the relative intensities of bands corresponding to protein, lipid, and carotenoid components during cyst activation. The presence of carotenoids in the amoeba is observed via characteristic Raman bands. These signals in the Raman spectra are intense in cysts but decrease in intensity with cyst activation and exhibit a correlation with the life cycle of amoeba. This work demonstrates the feasibility of using Raman spectroscopy for the detection of single amoeba microorganisms in vivo and for the analysis of the amoeba life activity. The information obtained may have implications for the estimation of epidemiological situations and for the diagnostics and prognosis of the development of amoebic inflammations.

  10. Epidemiology of primary amoebic meningoencephalitis-related deaths due to Naegleria fowleri infections from freshwater in Pakistan: An analysis of 8-year dataset

    Atta Abbas Naqvi

    2016-01-01

    Conclusion: Apart from contaminated municipal water supply, the use of water for ablution directly from ground source is believed to be a major contributing factor to the increasing number of infections; however, this claim could not be statistically verified. This study suggests that concerted efforts by all stakeholders are required if Pakistan needs to bring down the number of Naegleria infection cases. Further research is also immediately required to uncover the role of environmental factors in the rise of Naegleria infection cases.

  11. Kin discrimination increases with genetic distance in a social amoeba.

    Ostrowski, Elizabeth A; Katoh, Mariko; Shaulsky, Gad; Queller, David C; Strassmann, Joan E

    2008-11-25

    In the social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum, thousands of cells aggregate upon starvation to form a multicellular fruiting body, and approximately 20% of them die to form a stalk that benefits the others. The aggregative nature of multicellular development makes the cells vulnerable to exploitation by cheaters, and the potential for cheating is indeed high. Cells might avoid being victimized if they can discriminate among individuals and avoid those that are genetically different. We tested how widely social amoebae cooperate by mixing isolates from different localities that cover most of their natural range. We show here that different isolates partially exclude one another during aggregation, and there is a positive relationship between the extent of this exclusion and the genetic distance between strains. Our findings demonstrate that D. discoideum cells co-aggregate more with genetically similar than dissimilar individuals, suggesting the existence of a mechanism that discerns the degree of genetic similarity between individuals in this social microorganism.

  12. Bacterial production and growth rate estimation from [3H]thymidine incorporation for attached and free-living bacteria in aquatic systems

    Iriberri, J.; Unanue, M.; Ayo, B.; Barcina, I.; Egea, L.

    1990-01-01

    Production and specific growth rates of attached and free-living bacteria were estimated in an oligotrophic marine system, La Salvaje Beach, Vizcaya, Spain, and in a freshwater system having a higher nutrient concentration, Butron River, Vizcaya, Spain. Production was calculated from [methyl- 3 H]thymidine incorporation by estimating specific conversion factors (cells or micrograms of C produced per mole of thymidine incorporated) for attached and free-living bacteria, respectively, in each system. Conversion factors were not statistically different between attached and free-living bacteria: 6.812 x 10 11 and 8.678 x 10 11 μg of C mol -1 for free-living and attached bacteria in the freshwater system, and 1.276 x 10 11 and 1.354 x 10 11 μg of C mol -1 for free-living and attached bacteria in the marine system. Therefore, use of a unique conversion factor for the mixed bacterial population is well founded. However, conversion factors were higher in the freshwater system than in the marine system. This could be due to the different tropic conditions of the two systems. Free-living bacteria contributed the most to production in the two systems (85% in the marine system and 67% in the freshwater system) because of their greater contribution to total biomass. Specific growth rates calculated from production data and biomass data were similar for attached and free-living bacteria

  13. Transcriptional changes in the hookworm, Ancylostoma caninum, during the transition from a free-living to a parasitic larva.

    Bennett J D Datu

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Third-stage larvae (L3 of the canine hookworm, Ancylostoma caninum, undergo arrested development preceding transmission to a host. Many of the mRNAs up-regulated at this stage are likely to encode proteins that facilitate the transition from a free-living to a parasitic larva. The initial phase of mammalian host invasion by A. caninum L3 (herein termed "activation" can be mimicked in vitro by culturing L3 in serum-containing medium. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: The mRNAs differentially transcribed between activated and non-activated L3 were identified by suppression subtractive hybridisation (SSH. The analysis of these mRNAs on a custom oligonucleotide microarray printed with the SSH expressed sequence tags (ESTs and publicly available A. caninum ESTs (non-subtracted yielded 602 differentially expressed mRNAs, of which the most highly represented sequences encoded members of the pathogenesis-related protein (PRP superfamily and proteases. Comparison of these A. caninum mRNAs with those of Caenorhabditis elegans larvae exiting from developmental (dauer arrest demonstrated unexpectedly large differences in gene ontology profiles. C. elegans dauer exiting L3 up-regulated expression of mostly intracellular molecules involved in growth and development. Such mRNAs are virtually absent from activated hookworm larvae, and instead are over-represented by mRNAs encoding extracellular proteins with putative roles in host-parasite interactions. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Although this should not invalidate C. elegans dauer exit as a model for hookworm activation, it highlights the limitations of this free-living nematode as a model organism for the transition of nematode larvae from a free-living to a parasitic state.

  14. Interspecies variation in yolk selenium concentrations among eggs of free-living birds: The effect of phylogeny.

    Pappas, Athanasios C; Karadas, Filiz; Surai, Peter F; Wood, Nicholas A R; Cassey, Phillip; Bortolotti, Gary R; Speake, Brian K

    2006-01-01

    Birds deposit the trace element selenium (Se) into their eggs because an adequate supply of this micronutrient is essential for embryonic development. Although there is considerable interest in egg Se with regard to topics as diverse as poultry nutrition and environmental pollution, data on the natural levels of Se in eggs of free-living avian species are currently very limited. To address this lack of information, we measured the yolk Se concentrations in eggs of 14 avian species collected in the wild. The concentrations (ng/g wet yolk) varied from 394 to 2238, with a mean value of 1040. Values (means+/-SD) for eggs from the UK, Canada and New Zealand were, respectively, 522+/-192 (3 species), 1194+/-584 (8 species) and 1147+/-200 (3 species). However, analysis by appropriate statistical models indicates that the effect of phylogenetic relatedness among these species is so significant that it removes any effect of geographical location. In particular, species belonging to the order Passeriformes displayed significantly higher yolk Se levels than Non-Passeriforme species. In marked contrast to the free-living species, our previously published data indicate that the Se concentration in egg yolk of the domestic chicken is only about 100 ng/g wet yolk when the birds are maintained on a basal commercial diet without supplementary Se. The results reveal an extensive interspecies variation in yolk Se (across a 6-fold range) for eggs collected from the wild. Nevertheless, the Se concentrations in the yolks of all the free-living species were far higher (4-21-fold) than that achieved in the yolk of the domestic chicken consuming a standard basal diet.

  15. The killing effects of ultraviolet light and x-rays on free-living nematode, Rhabditidae tokai

    Ishii, Naoaki; Suzuki, Kenshi

    1980-01-01

    The life-shortening effects of ultraviolet light (UV) and X-rays were investigated with a strain of free-living nematode, Rhabditidae tokai. UV exhibited a significant life-shortening effect on adult worms, and it also inhibited growth of larvae, hatching of eggs and reproduction. Sensitivity to UV was decreased with increasing ages. In contrast, nematodes showed a marked resistance to X-rays. Data were obtained suggesting that X-ray-induced single-strand breaks in DNA can be rapidly and efficiently rejoined by a repair mechanism. Malformations were observed when immature larvae were irradiated with X-rays. (author)

  16. Prevalence and antibiotic-resistance characteristics of Enterococcus spp. Isolated from free-living and captive raptors in Central Illinois.

    Marrow, Judilee; Whittington, Julia K; Mitchell, Mark; Hoyer, Lois L; Maddox, Carol

    2009-04-01

    Due to their predatory nature, raptor species may serve as important indicators of environmental contamination with antimicrobial-resistant bacteria. Raptors prey on small rodents and birds that have diverse habitat ranges, including urban and rural environments, and their intestinal microflora can reflect that of the animals on which they feed. Enterococcus spp. were selected as target organisms because they have been isolated from the avian gastrointestinal tract, can be conferred by prey items, and because they are capable of multiple resistance patterns. They are also a concerning source of human antimicrobial resistance. In this study fecal cultures were obtained from 15 May 2004 to 31 August 2004, from 21 free-living raptors and four captive raptors. Enterococcus was isolated from 21 (84%) of the 25 birds, and 54 isolates were chosen for further study based upon unique colony morphology. The most common isolate recovered was Enterococcus faecalis (95%, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 89-100). One bird in the study was determined to have Enterococcus gallinarum. Two distinct ribotypes of E. faecalis were identified, one with unique bands at 11 and 13 kb and the other with unique bands at 14 and 20 kb. Both ribotypes were found in free-living and captive birds. The Enterococcus isolates in this study demonstrated a variety of antimicrobial-resistance characteristics, including almost complete resistance to amikacin, first-generation cephalosporins, spectinomycin, and sulphadimethoxime. Isolates demonstrated variable resistance to chloramphenicol, gentamicin, enrofloxacin, erythromycin, and ticarcillin. No phenotypically vancomycin-resistant E. faecalis isolates were recovered from any of the raptors; three isolates had intermediate level susceptibility. A significantly higher number of isolates collected from captive birds demonstrated resistance to chloramphenicol than those obtained from free-living birds. This trend was not duplicated with any of the remaining

  17. Stress Management in Cyst-Forming Free-Living Protists: Programmed Cell Death and/or Encystment

    Khan, Naveed Ahmed; Iqbal, Junaid

    2015-01-01

    In the face of harsh conditions and given a choice, a cell may (i) undergo programmed cell death, (ii) transform into a cancer cell, or (iii) enclose itself into a cyst form. In metazoans, the available evidence suggests that cellular machinery exists only to execute or avoid programmed cell death, while the ability to form a cyst was either lost or never developed. For cyst-forming free-living protists, here we pose the question whether the ability to encyst was gained at the expense of the programmed cell death or both functions coexist to counter unfavorable environmental conditions with mutually exclusive phenotypes. PMID:25648302

  18. Stress Management in Cyst-Forming Free-Living Protists: Programmed Cell Death and/or Encystment

    Naveed Ahmed Khan

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available In the face of harsh conditions and given a choice, a cell may (i undergo programmed cell death, (ii transform into a cancer cell, or (iii enclose itself into a cyst form. In metazoans, the available evidence suggests that cellular machinery exists only to execute or avoid programmed cell death, while the ability to form a cyst was either lost or never developed. For cyst-forming free-living protists, here we pose the question whether the ability to encyst was gained at the expense of the programmed cell death or both functions coexist to counter unfavorable environmental conditions with mutually exclusive phenotypes.

  19. Primary amoebic meningoencephalitis caused by Naegleria fowleri: an old enemy presenting new challenges.

    Ruqaiyyah Siddiqui

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available First discovered in 1899, Naegleria fowleri is a protist pathogen, known to infect the central nervous system and produce primary amoebic meningoencephalitis. The most distressing aspect is that the fatality rate has remained more than 95%, despite our advances in antimicrobial chemotherapy and supportive care. Although rare worldwide, most cases have been reported in the United States, Australia, and Europe (France. A large number of cases in developing countries go unnoticed. In particular, religious, recreational, and cultural practices such as ritual ablution and/or purifications, Ayurveda, and the use of neti pots for nasal irrigation can contribute to this devastating infection. With increasing water scarcity and public reliance on water storage, here we debate the need for increased awareness of primary amoebic meningoencephalitis and the associated risk factors, particularly in developing countries.

  20. The structure of the mitotic spindle and nucleolus during mitosis in the amebo-flagellate Naegleria.

    Walsh, Charles J

    2012-01-01

    Mitosis in the amebo-flagellate Naegleria pringsheimi is acentrosomal and closed (the nuclear membrane does not break down). The large central nucleolus, which occupies about 20% of the nuclear volume, persists throughout the cell cycle. At mitosis, the nucleolus divides and moves to the poles in association with the chromosomes. The structure of the mitotic spindle and its relationship to the nucleolus are unknown. To identify the origin and structure of the mitotic spindle, its relationship to the nucleolus and to further understand the influence of persistent nucleoli on cellular division in acentriolar organisms like Naegleria, three-dimensional reconstructions of the mitotic spindle and nucleolus were carried out using confocal microscopy. Monoclonal antibodies against three different nucleolar regions and α-tubulin were used to image the nucleolus and mitotic spindle. Microtubules were restricted to the nucleolus beginning with the earliest prophase spindle microtubules. Early spindle microtubules were seen as short rods on the surface of the nucleolus. Elongation of the spindle microtubules resulted in a rough cage of microtubules surrounding the nucleolus. At metaphase, the mitotic spindle formed a broad band completely embedded within the nucleolus. The nucleolus separated into two discreet masses connected by a dense band of microtubules as the spindle elongated. At telophase, the distal ends of the mitotic spindle were still completely embedded within the daughter nucleoli. Pixel by pixel comparison of tubulin and nucleolar protein fluorescence showed 70% or more of tubulin co-localized with nucleolar proteins by early prophase. These observations suggest a model in which specific nucleolar binding sites for microtubules allow mitotic spindle formation and attachment. The fact that a significant mass of nucleolar material precedes the chromosomes as the mitotic spindle elongates suggests that spindle elongation drives nucleolar division.

  1. Associations of Affective Responses During Free-Living Physical Activity and Future Physical Activity Levels: an Ecological Momentary Assessment Study.

    Liao, Yue; Chou, Chih-Ping; Huh, Jimi; Leventhal, Adam; Dunton, Genevieve

    2017-08-01

    Affective response during physical activity may influence motivation to perform future physical activity behavior. However, affective response during physical activity is often assessed under controlled laboratory conditions. The current study used ecological momentary assessment (EMA) to capture affective responses during free-living physical activity performed by adults, and determined whether these affective responses predict future moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) levels after 6 and 12 months. At baseline, electronic EMA surveys were randomly prompted across 4 days asking about current activities and affective states (e.g., happy, stressed, energetic, tired). Affective response during physical activity was operationalized as the level of positive or negative affect reported when concurrent physical activity (e.g., exercise or sports) was also reported. Data were available for 82 adults. Future levels of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) were measured using accelerometers, worn for seven consecutive days at 6 and 12 months after the baseline assessment. Feeling more energetic during physical activity was associated with performing more minutes of daily MVPA after both 6 and 12 months. Feeling less negative affect during physical activity was associated with engaging in more daily MVPA minutes after 12 months only. This study demonstrated how EMA can be used to capture affective responses during free-living physical activity. Results found that feelings more energetic and less negative during physical activity were associated with more future physical activity, suggesting that positive emotional benefits may reinforce behavior.

  2. Endosymbiosis In Statu Nascendi: Close Phylogenetic RelationshipBetween Obligately Endosymbiotic and Obligately Free-LivingPolynucleobacter Strains (Betaproteobacteria)

    Vannini, Claudia; Pockl, Matthias; Petroni, Giulio; Wu, Qinglong; Lang, Elke; Stackebrandt, Erko; Schrallhammer, Martina; Richardson, PaulM.; Hahn, Martin W.

    2006-07-21

    Bacterial strains affiliated to the phylogenetically shallowsubcluster C (PnecC) of the 28 Polynucleobacter cluster, which ischaracterized by a minimal 16S rRNA gene sequence similarity of approx.98.5 percent, have been reported to occur as obligate endosymbionts of 30ciliates (Euplotes spp.), as well as to occur as free-living cells in thepelagic zone of freshwater habitats. We investigated if these two groupsof closely related bacteria represent 32 strains fundamentally differingin lifestyle, or if they simply represent different stages of afacultative endosymbiotic lifestyle. The phylogenetic analysis of 16SrRNA gene and 16S34 23S ITS sequences of five endosymbiont strains fromtwo different Euplotes species and 40 pure culture strains demonstratedhost-species-specific clustering of the endosymbiont 36 sequences withinthe PnecC subcluster. The sequences of the endosymbionts showedcharacteristics indicating an obligate endosymbiotic lifestyle.Cultivation experiments 38 revealed fundamental differences inphysiological adaptations, and determination of the genome sizesindicated a slight size reduction in endosymbiotic strains. We concludethat the 40 two groups of PnecC bacteria represent obligately free-livingand obligately endosymbiotic strains, respectively, and do not representdifferent stages of the same complex lifecycle. 42 These closely relatedstrains occupy completely separated ecological niches. To our bestknowledge, this is the closest phylogenetic relationship between obligateendosymbionts and 44 obligately free-living bacteria everrevealed.

  3. How genetic data improve the interpretation of results of faecal glucocorticoid metabolite measurements in a free-living population.

    Maik Rehnus

    Full Text Available Measurement of glucocorticoid metabolites (GCM in faeces has become a widely used and effective tool for evaluating the amount of stress experienced by animals. However, the potential sampling bias resulting from an oversampling of individuals when collecting "anonymous" (unknown sex or individual faeces has rarely been investigated. We used non-invasive genetic sampling (NIGS to investigate potential interpretation errors of GCM measurements in a free-living population of mountain hares during the mating and post-reproductive periods. Genetic data improved the interpretation of results of faecal GCM measurements. In general GCM concentrations were influenced by season. However, genetic information revealed that it was sex-dependent. Within the mating period, females had higher GCM levels than males, but individual differences were more expressed in males. In the post-reproductive period, GCM concentrations were neither influenced by sex nor individual. We also identified potential pitfalls in the interpretation of anonymous faecal samples by individual differences in GCM concentrations and resampling rates. Our study showed that sex- and individual-dependent GCM levels led to a misinterpretation of GCM values when collecting "anonymous" faeces. To accurately evaluate the amount of stress experienced by free-living animals using faecal GCM measurements, we recommend documenting individuals and their sex of the sampled population. In stress-sensitive and elusive species, such documentation can be achieved by using NIGS and for diurnal animals with sexual and individual variation in appearance or marked individuals, it can be provided by a detailed field protocol.

  4. Arabinogalactan proteins occur in the free-living cyanobacterium genus Nostoc and in plant-Nostoc symbioses.

    Jackson, Owen; Taylor, Oliver; Adams, David G; Knox, J Paul

    2012-10-01

    Arabinogalactan proteins (AGP) are a diverse family of proteoglycans associated with the cell surfaces of plants. AGP have been implicated in a wide variety of plant cell processes, including signaling in symbioses. This study investigates the existence of putative AGP in free-living cyanobacterial cultures of the nitrogen-fixing, filamentous cyanobacteria Nostoc punctiforme and Nostoc sp. strain LBG1 and at the symbiotic interface in the symbioses between Nostoc spp. and two host plants, the angiosperm Gunnera manicata (in which the cyanobacterium is intracellular) and the liverwort Blasia pusilla (in which the cyanobacterium is extracellular). Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, immunoblotting, and immunofluorescence analyses demonstrated that three AGP glycan epitopes (recognized by monoclonal antibodies LM14, MAC207, and LM2) are present in free-living Nostoc cyanobacterial species. The same three AGP glycan epitopes are present at the Gunnera-Nostoc symbiotic interface and the LM2 epitope is detected during the establishment of the Blasia-Nostoc symbiosis. Bioinformatic analysis of the N. punctiforme genome identified five putative AGP core proteins that are representative of AGP classes found in plants. These results suggest a possible involvement of AGP in cyanobacterial-plant symbioses and are also suggestive of a cyanobacterial origin of AGP.

  5. Metabolic effects of dark chocolate consumption on energy, gut microbiota, and stress-related metabolism in free-living subjects.

    Martin, Francois-Pierre J; Rezzi, Serge; Peré-Trepat, Emma; Kamlage, Beate; Collino, Sebastiano; Leibold, Edgar; Kastler, Jürgen; Rein, Dietrich; Fay, Laurent B; Kochhar, Sunil

    2009-12-01

    Dietary preferences influence basal human metabolism and gut microbiome activity that in turn may have long-term health consequences. The present study reports the metabolic responses of free living subjects to a daily consumption of 40 g of dark chocolate for up to 14 days. A clinical trial was performed on a population of 30 human subjects, who were classified in low and high anxiety traits using validated psychological questionnaires. Biological fluids (urine and blood plasma) were collected during 3 test days at the beginning, midtime and at the end of a 2 week study. NMR and MS-based metabonomics were employed to study global changes in metabolism due to the chocolate consumption. Human subjects with higher anxiety trait showed a distinct metabolic profile indicative of a different energy homeostasis (lactate, citrate, succinate, trans-aconitate, urea, proline), hormonal metabolism (adrenaline, DOPA, 3-methoxy-tyrosine) and gut microbial activity (methylamines, p-cresol sulfate, hippurate). Dark chocolate reduced the urinary excretion of the stress hormone cortisol and catecholamines and partially normalized stress-related differences in energy metabolism (glycine, citrate, trans-aconitate, proline, beta-alanine) and gut microbial activities (hippurate and p-cresol sulfate). The study provides strong evidence that a daily consumption of 40 g of dark chocolate during a period of 2 weeks is sufficient to modify the metabolism of free living and healthy human subjects, as per variation of both host and gut microbial metabolism.

  6. Post-mortem hemoparasite detection in free-living Brazilian brown brocket deer (Mazama gouazoubira, Fischer 1814

    Júlia Angélica Gonçalves da Silveira

    Full Text Available Tick-borne infections can result in serious health problems for wild ruminants, and some of these infectious agents can be considered zoonosis. The aim of the present study was the post-mortem detection of hemoparasites in free-living Mazama gouazoubira from Minas Gerais state, Brazil. The deer samples consisted of free-living M. gouazoubira (n = 9 individuals that died after capture. Necropsy examinations of the carcasses were performed to search for macroscopic alterations. Organ samples were collected for subsequent imprint slides, and nested PCR assays were performed to detect hemoparasite species. Imprint slide assays from four deer showed erythrocytes infected with Piroplasmida small trophozoites, and A. marginale corpuscles were observed in erythrocytes from two animals. A. marginale and trophozoite co-infections occurred in two deer. A nested PCR analysis of the organs showed that six of the nine samples were positive for Theileria sp., five were positive for A. phagocytophilum and three were positive for A. marginale, with co-infection occurring in four deer. The results of the present study demonstrate that post-mortemdiagnostics using imprint slides and molecular assays are an effective method for detecting hemoparasites in organs.

  7. Post-mortem hemoparasite detection in free-living Brazilian brown brocket deer (Mazama gouazoubira, Fischer 1814).

    Silveira, Júlia Angélica Gonçalves da; Rabelo, Elida Mara Leite; Lima, Paula Cristina Senra; Chaves, Bárbara Neves; Ribeiro, Múcio Flávio Barbosa

    2014-01-01

    Tick-borne infections can result in serious health problems for wild ruminants, and some of these infectious agents can be considered zoonosis. The aim of the present study was the post-mortem detection of hemoparasites in free-living Mazama gouazoubira from Minas Gerais state, Brazil. The deer samples consisted of free-living M. gouazoubira (n = 9) individuals that died after capture. Necropsy examinations of the carcasses were performed to search for macroscopic alterations. Organ samples were collected for subsequent imprint slides, and nested PCR assays were performed to detect hemoparasite species. Imprint slide assays from four deer showed erythrocytes infected with Piroplasmida small trophozoites, and A. marginale corpuscles were observed in erythrocytes from two animals. A. marginale and trophozoite co-infections occurred in two deer. A nested PCR analysis of the organs showed that six of the nine samples were positive for Theileria sp., five were positive for A. phagocytophilum and three were positive for A. marginale, with co-infection occurring in four deer. The results of the present study demonstrate that post-mortem diagnostics using imprint slides and molecular assays are an effective method for detecting hemoparasites in organs.

  8. DNA Probes Show Genetic Variation in Cyanobacterial Symbionts of the Azolla Fern and a Closer Relationship to Free-Living Nostoc Strains than to Free-Living Anabaena Strains

    Plazinski, Jacek; Zheng, Qi; Taylor, Rona; Croft, Lynn; Rolfe, Barry G.; Gunning, Brian E. S.

    1990-01-01

    Twenty-two isolates of Anabaena azollae derived from seven Azolla species from various geographic and ecological sources were characterized by DNA-DNA hybridization. Cloned DNA fragments derived from the genomic sequences of three different A. azollae isolates were used to detect restriction fragment length polymorphism among all symbiotic anabaenas. DNA clones were radiolabeled and hybridized against southern blot transfers of genomic DNAs of different isolates of A. azollae digested with restriction endonucleases. Eight DNA probes were selected to identify the Anabaena strains tested. Two were strain specific and hybridized only to A. azollae strains isolated from Azolla microphylla or Azolla caroliniana. One DNA probe was section specific (hybridized only to anabaenas isolated from Azolla ferns representing the section Euazolla), and five other probes gave finer discrimination among anabaenas representing various ecotypes of Azolla species. These cloned genomic DNA probes identified 11 different genotypes of A. azollae isolates. These included three endosymbiotic genotypes within Azolla filiculoides species and two genotypes within both A. caroliniana and Azolla pinnata endosymbionts. Although we were not able to discriminate among anabaenas extracted from different ecotypes of Azolla nilotica, Azolla mexicina, Azolla rubra and Azolla microphylla species, each of the endosymbionts was easily identified as a unique genotype. When total DNA isolated from free-living Anabaena sp. strain PCC7120 was screened, none of the genomic DNA probes gave detectable positive hybridization. Total DNA of Nostoc cycas PCC7422 hybridized with six of eight genomic DNA fragments. These data imply that the dominant symbiotic organism in association with Azolla spp. is more closely related to Nostoc spp. than to free-living Anabaena spp. Images PMID:16348182

  9. Differential regulation of Rhizobium etli rpoN2 gene expression during symbiosis and free-living growth.

    Michiels, J; Moris, M; Dombrecht, B; Verreth, C; Vanderleyden, J

    1998-07-01

    The Rhizobium etli rpoN1 gene, encoding the alternative sigma factor sigma54 (RpoN), was recently characterized and shown to be involved in the assimilation of several nitrogen and carbon sources during free-living aerobic growth (J. Michiels, T. Van Soom, I. D'hooghe, B. Dombrecht, T. Benhassine, P. de Wilde, and J. Vanderleyden, J. Bacteriol. 180:1729-1740, 1998). We identified a second rpoN gene copy in R. etli, rpoN2, encoding a 54.0-kDa protein which displays 59% amino acid identity with the R. etli RpoN1 protein. The rpoN2 gene is cotranscribed with a short open reading frame, orf180, which codes for a protein with a size of 20.1 kDa that is homologous to several prokaryotic and eukaryotic proteins of similar size. In contrast to the R. etli rpoN1 mutant strain, inactivation of the rpoN2 gene did not produce any phenotypic defects during free-living growth. However, symbiotic nitrogen fixation was reduced by approximately 90% in the rpoN2 mutant, whereas wild-type levels of nitrogen fixation were observed in the rpoN1 mutant strain. Nitrogen fixation was completely abolished in the rpoN1 rpoN2 double mutant. Expression of rpoN1 was negatively autoregulated during aerobic growth and was reduced during microaerobiosis and symbiosis. In contrast, rpoN2-gusA and orf180-gusA fusions were not expressed aerobically but were strongly induced at low oxygen tensions or in bacteroids. Expression of rpoN2 and orf180 was abolished in R. etli rpoN1 rpoN2 and nifA mutants under all conditions tested. Under free-living microaerobic conditions, transcription of rpoN2 and orf180 required the RpoN1 protein. In symbiosis, expression of rpoN2 and orf180 occurred independently of the rpoN1 gene, suggesting the existence of an alternative symbiosis-specific mechanism of transcription activation.

  10. Bio-recovery of non-essential heavy metals by intra- and extracellular mechanisms in free-living microorganisms.

    García-García, Jorge D; Sánchez-Thomas, Rosina; Moreno-Sánchez, Rafael

    2016-01-01

    Free-living microorganisms may become suitable models for recovery of non-essential and essential heavy metals from wastewater bodies and soils by using and enhancing their accumulating and/or leaching abilities. This review analyzes the variety of different mechanisms developed mainly in bacteria, protists and microalgae to accumulate heavy metals, being the most relevant those involving phytochelatin and metallothionein biosyntheses; phosphate/polyphosphate metabolism; compartmentalization of heavy metal-complexes into vacuoles, chloroplasts and mitochondria; and secretion of malate and other organic acids. Cyanide biosynthesis for extra-cellular heavy metal bioleaching is also examined. These metabolic/cellular processes are herein analyzed at the transcriptional, kinetic and metabolic levels to provide mechanistic basis for developing genetically engineered microorganisms with greater capacities and efficiencies for heavy metal recovery, recycling of heavy metals, biosensing of metal ions, and engineering of metalloenzymes. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Captive and free-living urban pigeons (Columba livia) from Brazil as carriers of multidrug-resistant pathogenic Escherichia coli.

    Borges, Clarissa A; Maluta, Renato P; Beraldo, Lívia G; Cardozo, Marita V; Guastalli, Elisabete A L; Kariyawasam, Subhashinie; DebRoy, Chitrita; Ávila, Fernando A

    2017-01-01

    Thirty Escherichia coli isolates from captive and free-living pigeons in Brazil were characterised. Virulence-associated genes identified in pigeons included those which occur relatively frequently in avian pathogenic E. coli (APEC) from commercial poultry worldwide. Eleven of 30 E. coli isolates from pigeons, belonging mainly to B1 and B2 phylogenetic groups, had high or intermediate pathogenicity for 1-day-old chicks. The frequency of multi-drug resistant (MDR) E. coli in captive pigeons was relatively high and included one isolate positive for the extended-spectrum β-lactamase (ESBL) gene bla CTX-M-8 . Pulsed field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) showed high heterogeneity among isolates. There is potential for pigeons to transmit antibiotic resistant pathogenic E. coli to other species through environmental contamination or direct contact. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Free-living ixodid ticks in an urban Atlantic Forest fragment, state of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

    Pinheiro, Michele da Costa; Lourenço, Elizabete Captivo; Patrício, Priscilla Maria Peixoto; Sá-Hungaro, Iwine Joyce Barbosa de; Famadas, Kátia Maria

    2014-01-01

    As a consequence of the importance of ticks in forests in protected areas, was conducted survey of species of free-living ticks in the Natural Park Municipal Curió, state of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Monthly samples were taken by dragging method, dry ice traps and visual search in two transects. Adults and nymphs of Amblyomma cajennense (n= 147), Amblyomma brasiliense (n= 4) and Amblyomma parvum (n= 1) were collected. This is the first occurrence of A. parvum in the state. No correlation was found between the abundance of stages of A. cajennense and rainfall, temperature and relative humidity. The highest abundances of adults were in the months of January and May, and nymphs in September and October. The low diversity of parasites on Curió Park can be attributed to the proximity of households with pets, which would also explain the higher abundance of A. cajennense that is commonly found in areas impacted by anthropogenic pressure.

  13. Use of Interim Scaffolding and Neotissue Development to Produce a Scaffold-Free Living Hyaline Cartilage Graft.

    Lau, Ting Ting; Leong, Wenyan; Peck, Yvonne; Su, Kai; Wang, Dong-An

    2015-01-01

    The fabrication of three-dimensional (3D) constructs relies heavily on the use of biomaterial-based scaffolds. These are required as mechanical supports as well as to translate two-dimensional cultures to 3D cultures for clinical applications. Regardless of the choice of scaffold, timely degradation of scaffolds is difficult to achieve and undegraded scaffold material can lead to interference in further tissue development or morphogenesis. In cartilage tissue engineering, hydrogel is the highly preferred scaffold material as it shares many similar characteristics with native cartilaginous matrix. Hence, we employed gelatin microspheres as porogens to create a microcavitary alginate hydrogel as an interim scaffold to facilitate initial chondrocyte 3D culture and to establish a final scaffold-free living hyaline cartilaginous graft (LhCG) for cartilage tissue engineering.

  14. Disruptive effects of light pollution on sleep in free-living birds: Season and/or light intensity-dependent?

    Raap, Thomas; Sun, Jiachen; Pinxten, Rianne; Eens, Marcel

    2017-11-01

    Light pollution or artificial light at night (ALAN) is an increasing anthropogenic environmental pollutant posing an important potential threat for wildlife. Evidence of its effects on animal physiology and behaviour is accumulating. However, in order to effectively mitigate light pollution it is important to determine which factors contribute to the severity of effects of ALAN. In this experimental study we explored whether there are seasonal-dependent effects of ALAN on sleep in free-living great tits (Parus major), an important model species. Additionally, we looked at whether light intensity determined the severity of effects of ALAN on sleep. We therefore exposed animals to artificial light inside the nest box (3lx) in December (winter) and February (pre-breeding season). Results from February were compared with the results from a previous study in February, using a lower light intensity (1.6lx). We found little evidence for a season-dependent response. Effects of ALAN hardly differed between high and low light intensity. ALAN disrupted sleep with as main effect a decrease in sleep duration (≈-40min) as animals woke up earlier (≈-24min). However, compared to a natural dark situation sleep onset was delayed by high but not by low light intensity of ALAN. Our study underlines earlier found disruptive effects of ALAN on sleep of free-living animals. While we found no conclusive evidence for seasonal or light intensity-dependent effects of ALAN, additional experimental work using lower light intensities might show such differences. Examining potential management options is crucial in mitigating disruptive effects of light pollution, which will be an important focus for future studies. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. The effects of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungus and free living nitrogen fixing bacteria on growth, photosynthesis and yield of corn

    mohsen jahan

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available In recent years, biological fertilizers have received special attention by scientists in sustainable and low input agriculture. In order to study the effects of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi and free living nitrogen fixing bacteria on growth and photosynthesis characteristics of corn in conventional and ecological cropping systems, a field experiment was conducted at the Research Farm of Ferdowsi University of Mashhad during year 2006. A split plots arrangement based on randomized complete block design with three replications was used. Treatments consisted four cropping systems (1- High input conventional system, 2- Medium input conventional system, 3- Low input conventional system and 4- Ecological system and four inoculations (1- Mycorrhiza fungus, Glomus intraradices, 2- Bacteria, Azotobacter paspali and Azospirillum brasilense, 3- Dual inoculation, Fungus plus bacteria, and 4- No-inoculation, control, which were allocated to main plots and sub plots, respectively. All agronomic practices and inputs application during planting and nursing for each of cropping systems were conducted according to regional traditions. Results showed that the effect of inoculation on photosynthesis rates of corn was significant, as the highest photosynthesis rate obtained in dual inoculation. Single inoculation (fungus or bacteria was ranked second. The effect of all inoculations on corn dry matter production was significant and dual inoculation produced the highest dry matter yield. The cropping systems have significant effect on corn yield and the difference between medium input conventional system and high input conventional system was significant, but the high input, low input and ecological cropping systems showed no differences. Inoculants affected the SPAD readings, and dual inoculation showed the highest SPAD readings. This study showed that utilization of low input conventional and ecological systems in combination with use of dual inoculation of

  16. Antimicrobial susceptibility of Brachyspira spp. isolated from commercial laying hens and free-living wild mallards (Anas platyrhynchos).

    Jansson, Désirée S; Pringle, Märit

    2011-08-01

    In vitro antimicrobial susceptibility to tylosin, valnemulin, tiamulin, doxycycline, lincomycin and ampicillin was investigated by broth dilution in 48 Brachyspira spp. isolates from commercial laying hens (n=30) and free-living wild mallards (Anas platyrhynchos) (n=18). Presumed pathogens (Brachyspira alvinipulli, Brachyspira intermedia, Brachyspira pilosicoli), commensals (Brachyspira murdochii, Brachyspira innocens, "Brachyspira pulli"), and isolates of undetermined species affiliation were included. The laying hens had not been exposed to therapeutic levels of antimicrobials for at least 50 weeks before sampling, and low levels of environmental antimicrobial exposure were presumed in mallards. No isolates with decreased susceptibility to tylosin, valnemulin, tiamulin or doxycycline were found. Decreased susceptibility to lincomycin (minimum inhibitory concentration 16 µg/ml) was detected in two isolates (Brachyspira sp.) from laying hens. Five isolates showed decreased susceptibility to ampicillin (minimum inhibitory concentration 16 to >32 µg/ml), including two "B. pulli" and one B. alvinipulli from laying hens, and isolates of B. pilosicoli and "B. pulli" from mallards. Decreased susceptibility to ampicillin was associated with β-lactamase activity in four isolates. A new variant of a class D β-lactamase gene designated bla (oxa-192) was identified in a B. pilosicoli isolate of mallard origin. This is the first time the genetic basis for antimicrobial resistance is described in Brachyspira spp. from a free-living wild bird. Isolates displaying decreased susceptibility to ampicillin were accompanied by fully susceptible isolates of the same species or other genotypes within three laying hen flocks. This underlines the need for performing antimicrobial susceptibility tests on single clones/genotypes, and to analyse multiple isolates from the same flock.

  17. Effects of four-month handbike training under free-living conditions on physical fitness and health in wheelchair users.

    Hoekstra, Sven; Valent, Linda; Gobets, David; van der Woude, Lucas; de Groot, Sonja

    2017-08-01

    Recognizing the encouraging effect of challenging events, the HandbikeBattle (HBB) was created to promote exercise among wheelchair users. The purpose of this study was to reveal the effects on physical fitness and health outcomes of four-month handbike training under free-living conditions in preparation for the event. In this prospective cohort study, 59 relatively inexperienced handyclists participated in the HBB of 2013 or 2014. Incremental exercise tests were conducted, respiratory function was tested and anthropometrics were measured before and after the preparation period. Main outcome measures were peak power output (POpeak), peak oxygen uptake (VO2peak) and waist circumference, of which the changes were tested using repeated measures ANOVA. To detect possible determinants of changes in physical fitness, a linear regression analysis was conducted with personal characteristics, executed training volume and upper-extremity complaints during the training period as independent variables. POpeak, VO2peak and waist circumference improved significantly with 17%, 7% and 4.1%, respectively. None of the included variables were significant determinants for the changes in POpeak found as a result of the training. A challenging event such as the HBB provokes training regimes among participants of sufficient load to realize substantial improvements in physical fitness and health outcomes. Implications for Rehabilitation Due to the often impaired muscle function in the lower-limbs and an inactive lifestyle, wheelchair users generally show considerably lower levels of fitness compared to able-bodied individuals. This prospective cohort study showed that four months of handbike training under free-living conditions in preparation for this event resulted in substantial improvements in physical fitness and health outcomes in wheelchair users. The creation of a challenging event such as the HandbikeBattle as part of a follow-up rehabilitation practice can therefore be a useful

  18. Exploratory behavior is linked to stress physiology and social network centrality in free-living house finches (Haemorhous mexicanus).

    Moyers, Sahnzi C; Adelman, James S; Farine, Damien R; Moore, Ignacio T; Hawley, Dana M

    2018-05-21

    Animal personality has been linked to individual variation in both stress physiology and social behaviors, but few studies have simultaneously examined covariation between personality traits, stress hormone levels, and behaviors in free-living animals. We investigated relationships between exploratory behavior (one aspect of animal personality), stress physiology, and social and foraging behaviors in wild house finches (Haemorhous mexicanus). We conducted novel environment assays after collecting samples of baseline and stress-induced plasma corticosterone concentrations from a subset of house finches. We then fitted individuals with Passive Integrated Transponder tags and monitored feeder use and social interactions at radio-frequency identification equipped bird feeders. First, we found that individuals with higher baseline corticosterone concentrations exhibit more exploratory behaviors in a novel environment. Second, more exploratory individuals interacted with more unique conspecifics in the wild, though this result was stronger for female than for male house finches. Third, individuals that were quick to begin exploring interacted more frequently with conspecifics than slow-exploring individuals. Finally, exploratory behaviors were unrelated to foraging behaviors, including the amount of time spent on bird feeders, a behavior previously shown to be predictive of acquiring a bacterial disease that causes annual epidemics in house finches. Overall, our results indicate that individual differences in exploratory behavior are linked to variation in both stress physiology and social network traits in free-living house finches. Such covariation has important implications for house finch ecology, as both traits can contribute to fitness in the wild. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Identification of Free-living and Particle-Associated Microbial Communities Present in Hadal regions of the Mariana Trench

    Jonathan eTarn

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Relatively few studies have described the microbial populations present in ultra-deep hadal environments, largely as a result of difficulties associated with sampling. Here we report Illumina-tag V6 16S rRNA sequence-based analyses of the free-living and particle-associated microbial communities recovered from locations within two of the deepest hadal sites on Earth, the Challenger Deep (10,918 meters below surface-mbs and the Sirena Deep (10,667 mbs within the Mariana Trench, as well as one control site (Ulithi Atoll, 761 mbs. Seawater samples were collected using an autonomous lander positioned ~1m above the seafloor. The bacterial populations within the Mariana Trench bottom water samples were dissimilar to other deep-sea microbial communities, though with overlap with those of diffuse flow hydrothermal vents and deep-subsurface locations. Distinct particle-associated and free-living bacterial communities were found to exist. The hadal bacterial populations were also markedly different from one another, indicating the likelihood of different chemical conditions at the two sites. In contrast to the bacteria, the hadal archaeal communities were more similar to other less deep datasets and to each other due to an abundance of cosmopolitan deep-sea taxa. The hadal communities were enriched in thirty four bacterial and four archaeal operational taxonomic units (OTUs including members of the Gammaproteobacteria, Epsilonproteobacteria, Marinimicrobia, Cyanobacteria, Deltaproteobacteria, Gemmatimonadetes, Atribacteria, Spirochaetes, and Euryarchaeota. Sequences matching cultivated piezophiles were notably enriched in the Challenger Deep, especially within the particle-associated fraction, and were found in higher abundances than in other hadal studies, where they were either far less prevalent or missing. Our results indicate the importance of heterotrophy, sulfur-cycling, and methane and hydrogen utilization within the bottom waters of the deeper

  20. Identification of Free-Living and Particle-Associated Microbial Communities Present in Hadal Regions of the Mariana Trench.

    Tarn, Jonathan; Peoples, Logan M; Hardy, Kevin; Cameron, James; Bartlett, Douglas H

    2016-01-01

    Relatively few studies have described the microbial populations present in ultra-deep hadal environments, largely as a result of difficulties associated with sampling. Here we report Illumina-tag V6 16S rRNA sequence-based analyses of the free-living and particle-associated microbial communities recovered from locations within two of the deepest hadal sites on Earth, the Challenger Deep (10,918 meters below surface-mbs) and the Sirena Deep (10,667 mbs) within the Mariana Trench, as well as one control site (Ulithi Atoll, 761 mbs). Seawater samples were collected using an autonomous lander positioned ~1 m above the seafloor. The bacterial populations within the Mariana Trench bottom water samples were dissimilar to other deep-sea microbial communities, though with overlap with those of diffuse flow hydrothermal vents and deep-subsurface locations. Distinct particle-associated and free-living bacterial communities were found to exist. The hadal bacterial populations were also markedly different from one another, indicating the likelihood of different chemical conditions at the two sites. In contrast to the bacteria, the hadal archaeal communities were more similar to other less deep datasets and to each other due to an abundance of cosmopolitan deep-sea taxa. The hadal communities were enriched in 34 bacterial and 4 archaeal operational taxonomic units (OTUs) including members of the Gammaproteobacteria, Epsilonproteobacteria, Marinimicrobia, Cyanobacteria, Deltaproteobacteria, Gemmatimonadetes, Atribacteria, Spirochaetes, and Euryarchaeota. Sequences matching cultivated piezophiles were notably enriched in the Challenger Deep, especially within the particle-associated fraction, and were found in higher abundances than in other hadal studies, where they were either far less prevalent or missing. Our results indicate the importance of heterotrophy, sulfur-cycling, and methane and hydrogen utilization within the bottom waters of the deeper regions of the Mariana Trench

  1. Clinical findings and normative ocular data for free-living Anna's (Calypte anna) and Black-chinned (Archilochus alexandri) Hummingbirds.

    Moore, Bret A; Maggs, David J; Kim, Soohyun; Motta, Monica J; Bandivadekar, Ruta; Tell, Lisa A; Murphy, Christopher J

    2018-02-20

    To estimate the prevalence of ocular disease and obtain normative ocular data for free-living hummingbirds. Two hundred and sixty-three free-living, adult Hummingbirds from coastal and inland central California were studied, including Anna's (Calypte anna, n = 186) and Black-chinned (Archilochus alexandri; n = 77) hummingbirds. Slit lamp biomicroscopy and indirect ophthalmoscopy were performed on all individuals. Rebound tonometry, measurement of horizontal palpebral fissure length, and streak retinoscopy were performed on select individuals. Five conscious Anna's Hummingbirds underwent ocular imaging including fundus photography, digital slit lamp photography, and anterior segment and retinal optical coherence tomography. The prevalence of ocular disease in this population was 2.28%. Ocular imaging revealed a thin cornea, shallow anterior chamber, large lens, and a single central, deep convexiclivate fovea. Mean ± SD intraocular pressure was 11.21 ± 2.23 mm Hg. Mean ± SD eyelid length was 2.59 ± 0.19 mm. All eyes were emmetropic or mildly hyperopic with a mean (range) ± SD refractive error of +0.32 (-0.25 to +1) ± 0.33 diopters. Consistent with previous reports, these data suggest that hummingbirds have visual characteristics found in predatory and prey species, as well as a low prevalence of spontaneous ocular disease. This work provides a set of reference values and clinical findings that can be used in the future research on hummingbird vision and ocular disease. It also provides representative diagnostic images of normal birds and demonstrates that advanced ocular imaging can be performed on manually restrained hummingbirds without pharmacologic dilation. © 2018 American College of Veterinary Ophthalmologists.

  2. Quantitative trait loci (QTL) mapping of resistance to strongyles and coccidia in the free-living Soay sheep (Ovis aries).

    Beraldi, Dario; McRae, Allan F; Gratten, Jacob; Pilkington, Jill G; Slate, Jon; Visscher, Peter M; Pemberton, Josephine M

    2007-01-01

    A genome-wide scan was performed to detect quantitative trait loci (QTL) for resistance to gastrointestinal parasites and ectoparasitic keds segregating in the free-living Soay sheep population on St. Kilda (UK). The mapping panel consisted of a single pedigree of 882 individuals of which 588 were genotyped. The Soay linkage map used for the scans comprised 251 markers covering the whole genome at average spacing of 15cM. The traits here investigated were the strongyle faecal egg count (FEC), the coccidia faecal oocyst count (FOC) and a count of keds (Melophagus ovinus). QTL mapping was performed by means of variance component analysis so that the genetic parameters of the study traits were also estimated and compared with previous studies in Soay and domestic sheep. Strongyle FEC and coccidia FOC showed moderate heritability (h(2)=0.26 and 0.22, respectively) in lambs but low heritability in adults (h(2)<0.10). Ked count appeared to have very low h(2) in both lambs and adults. Genome scans were performed for the traits with moderate heritability and two genomic regions reached the level of suggestive linkage for coccidia FOC in lambs (logarithm of the odds=2.68 and 2.21 on chromosomes 3 and X, respectively). We believe this is the first study to report a QTL search for parasite resistance in a free-living animal population and therefore may represent a useful reference for similar studies aimed at understanding the genetics of host-parasite co-evolution in the wild.

  3. Identification of a common cyanobacterial symbiont associated with Azolla spp. through molecular and morphological characterization of free-living and symbiotic cyanobacteria.

    Gebhardt, J S; Nierzwicki-Bauer, S A

    1991-01-01

    Symbiotically associated cyanobacteria from Azolla mexicana and Azolla pinnata were isolated and cultured in a free-living state. Morphological analyses revealed differences between the free-living isolates and their symbiotic counterparts, as did restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) analyses with both single-copy glnA and rbcS gene probes and a multicopy psbA gene probe. RFLP analyses with Anabaena sp. strain PCC 7120 nifD excision element probes, including an xisA gene probe, detected homologous sequences in DNA extracted from the free-living isolates. Sequences homologous to these probes were not detected in DNA from the symbiotically associated cyanobacteria. These analyses indicated that the isolates were not identical to the major cyanobacterial symbiont species residing in leaf cavities of Azolla spp. Nevertheless, striking similarities between several free-living isolates were observed. In every instance, the isolate from A. pinnata displayed banding patterns virtually identical to those of free-living cultures previously isolated from Azolla caroliniana and Azolla filiculoides. These results suggest the ubiquitous presence of a culturable minor cyanobacterial symbiont in at least three species of Azolla. Images PMID:1685078

  4. Contrasting species-environment relationships in communities of testate amoebae, bryophytes and vascular plants along the fen-bog gradient.

    Lamentowicz, Mariusz; Lamentowicz, Lukasz; van der Knaap, Willem O; Gabka, Maciej; Mitchell, Edward A D

    2010-04-01

    We studied the vegetation, testate amoebae and abiotic variables (depth of the water table, pH, electrical conductivity, Ca and Mg concentrations of water extracted from mosses) along the bog to extremely rich fen gradient in sub-alpine peatlands of the Upper Engadine (Swiss Alps). Testate amoeba diversity was correlated to that of mosses but not of vascular plants. Diversity peaked in rich fen for testate amoebae and in extremely rich fen for mosses, while for testate amoebae and mosses it was lowest in bog but for vascular plants in extremely rich fen. Multiple factor and redundancy analyses (RDA) revealed a stronger correlation of testate amoebae than of vegetation to water table and hydrochemical variables and relatively strong correlation between testate amoeba and moss community data. In RDA, hydrochemical variables explained a higher proportion of the testate amoeba and moss data than water table depth. Abiotic variables explained a higher percentage of the species data for testate amoebae (30.3% or 19.5% for binary data) than for mosses (13.4%) and vascular plants (10%). These results show that (1) vascular plant, moss and testate amoeba communities respond differently to ecological gradients in peatlands and (2) testate amoebae are more strongly related than vascular plants to the abiotic factors at the mire surface. These differences are related to vertical trophic gradients and associated niche differentiation.

  5. Effect of the DASH Diet on Pre- and Stage 1 Hypertensive Individuals in a Free-Living Environment

    Joan Malloy-McFall

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Background Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH has been shown to successfully reduce systolic (SBP and diastolic blood pressure (DBP when evaluated in clinically controlled environments but there is a lack of information regarding the efficacy of the original DASH diet when it is applied in a free-living environment. Purpose To provide descriptive data as to the changes in blood pressure individuals could expect to achieve when following the DASH diet in a free-living environment for 4-weeks with no additional behavioral modifications. Methods Twenty, pre- and stage 1 hypertensive participants were randomly split into 2 groups; DASH (males N = 5, females N = 5, age = 38.5 ± 10.8 and control (males N = 7, females N = 3, age = 38.1 ± 11.1. The DASH group was instructed on how to follow the DASH diet on their own for 4-weeks while the control group continued their normal diet. SBP, DBP, body weight, 3-day food diaries and physical activity recall questionnaire data were collected pre and post intervention using a traditional person-to-person instructional technique. Results Two-way ANOVA demonstrated that there was a significant group (DASH, control by time (pre, post interaction for SBP ( P = 0.003 and no significant effects for DBP. The interaction was due to a significant reduction ( P < 0.001 in SBP in the DASH group (pre: 141.3 ± 11.3 mmHg vs. post: 130.7 ± 9.1 mmHg over the course of the intervention with no change in SBP in the control group (pre: 133.5 ± 6.6 mmHg vs. post: 131.9 ± 8.9 mmHg. Pearson's correlation analyses revealed that changes in potential moderators of blood pressure including body weight, BMI, sodium intake and total kilocalories were each not associated with changes in SBP (r ≤ 0.14, P ≥ 0.5 or DBP (r < 0.10, P ≥ 0.6 pre- to post-treatment. Chi-square demonstrated no significant differences in the number of participants per group (n = 4 DASH, n = 1 control who indicated increasing physical activity

  6. Amoebae and other protozoa in material samples from moisture-damaged buildings

    Yli-Pirilae, T.; Kusnetsov, Jaana; Haatainen, Susanna; Haenninen, Marja; Jalava, Pasi; Reiman, Marjut; Seuri, Markku; Hirvonen, Maija-Riitta; Nevalainen, Aino

    2004-01-01

    Mold growth in buildings has been shown to be associated with adverse health effects. The fungal and bacterial growth on moistened building materials has been studied, but little attention has been paid to the other organisms spawning in the damaged materials. We examined moist building materials for protozoa, concentrating on amoebae. Material samples (n=124) from moisture-damaged buildings were analyzed for amoebae, fungi, and bacteria. Amoebae were detected in 22% of the samples, and they were found to favor cooccurrence with bacteria and the fungi Acremonium spp., Aspergillus versicolor, Chaetomium spp., and Trichoderma spp. In addition, 11 seriously damaged samples were screened for other protozoa. Ciliates and flagellates were found in almost every sample analyzed. Amoebae are known to host pathogenic bacteria, such as chlamydiae, legionellae, and mycobacteria and they may have a role in the complex of exposure that contributes to the health effects associated with moisture damage in buildings

  7. Giant Viruses of Amoebae: A Journey Through Innovative Research and Paradigm Changes.

    Colson, Philippe; La Scola, Bernard; Raoult, Didier

    2017-09-29

    Giant viruses of amoebae were discovered serendipitously in 2003; they are visible via optical microscopy, making them bona fide microbes. Their lifestyle, structure, and genomes break the mold of classical viruses. Giant viruses of amoebae are complex microorganisms. Their genomes harbor between 444 and 2,544 genes, including many that are unique to viruses, and encode translation components; their virions contain >100 proteins as well as mRNAs. Mimiviruses have a specific mobilome, including virophages, provirophages, and transpovirons, and can resist virophages through a system known as MIMIVIRE (mimivirus virophage resistance element). Giant viruses of amoebae bring upheaval to the definition of viruses and tend to separate the current virosphere into two categories: very simple viruses and viruses with complexity similar to that of other microbes. This new paradigm is propitious for enhanced detection and characterization of giant viruses of amoebae, and a particular focus on their role in humans is warranted.

  8. Iron-Binding Protein Degradation by Cysteine Proteases of Naegleria fowleri

    Moisés Martínez-Castillo

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Naegleria fowleri causes acute and fulminant primary amoebic meningoencephalitis. This microorganism invades its host by penetrating the olfactory mucosa and then traveling up the mesaxonal spaces and crossing the cribriform plate; finally, the trophozoites invade the olfactory bulbs. During its invasion, the protozoan obtains nutrients such as proteins, lipids, carbohydrates, and cationic ions (e.g., iron, calcium, and sodium from the host. However, the mechanism by which these ions are obtained, particularly iron, is poorly understood. In the present study, we evaluated the ability of N. fowleri to degrade iron-binding proteins, including hololactoferrin, transferrin, ferritin, and hemoglobin. Zymography assays were performed for each substrate under physiological conditions (pH 7 at 37°C employing conditioned medium (CM and total crude extracts (TCEs of N. fowleri. Different degradation patterns with CM were observed for hololactoferrin, transferrin, and hemoglobin; however, CM did not cause ferritin degradation. In contrast, the TCEs degraded only hololactoferrin and transferrin. Inhibition assays revealed that cysteine proteases were involved in this process. Based on these results, we suggest that CM and TCEs of N. fowleri degrade iron-binding proteins by employing cysteine proteases, which enables the parasite to obtain iron to survive while invading the central nervous system.

  9. Primary amebic meningoencephalitis due to Naegleria fowleri in a South American tapir.

    Lozano-Alarcón, F; Bradley, G A; Houser, B S; Visvesvara, G S

    1997-05-01

    Naegleria fowleri, Acanthamoeba spp., and Balamuthia mandrillaris are known to cause fatal central nervous system (CNS) disease in human beings. N. fowleri causes acute, fulminating primary amebic meningoencephalitis (PAM), which generally leads to death within 10 days. Acanthamoeba spp. and B. mandrillaris cause chronic granulomatous amebic encephalitis, which may last for 8 weeks. Acanthamoeba spp. and B. mandrillaris also cause CNS disease in animals. N. fowleri, however, has been described only in human beings. This report is the first of PAM in an animal, a South American tapir. Dry cough, lethargy, and coma developed in the animal, and its condition progressed to death. At necropsy, lesions were seen in the cerebrum, cerebellum, and lungs. The CNS had severe, suppurative meningoencephalitis with many neutrophils, fibrin, plasma cells, and amebas. Amebas were 6.5 microns to 9 microns in diameter and had a nucleus containing a large nucleolus. Amebas in the sections reacted with a monoclonal antibody specific for N. fowleri in the immunofluorescent assay and appeared bright green.

  10. Reduced Efficiency of Chlorine Disinfection of Naegleria fowleri in a Drinking Water Distribution Biofilm.

    Miller, Haylea C; Wylie, Jason; Dejean, Guillaume; Kaksonen, Anna H; Sutton, David; Braun, Kalan; Puzon, Geoffrey J

    2015-09-15

    Naegleria fowleri associated with biofilm and biological demand water (organic matter suspended in water that consumes disinfectants) sourced from operational drinking water distribution systems (DWDSs) had significantly increased resistance to chlorine disinfection. N. fowleri survived intermittent chlorine dosing of 0.6 mg/L for 7 days in a mixed biofilm from field and laboratory-cultured Escherichia coli strains. However, N. fowleri associated with an attached drinking water distribution biofilm survived more than 30 times (20 mg/L for 3 h) the recommended concentration of chlorine for drinking water. N. fowleri showed considerably more resistance to chlorine when associated with a real field biofilm compared to the mixed laboratory biofilm. This increased resistance is likely due to not only the consumption of disinfectants by the biofilm and the reduced disinfectant penetration into the biofilm but also the composition and microbial community of the biofilm itself. The increased diversity of the field biofilm community likely increased N. fowleri's resistance to chlorine disinfection compared to that of the laboratory-cultured biofilm. Previous research has been conducted in only laboratory scale models of DWDSs and laboratory-cultured biofilms. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study demonstrating how N. fowleri can persist in a field drinking water distribution biofilm despite chlorination.

  11. Effective PCR-based detection of Naegleria fowleri from cultured sample and PAM-developed mouse.

    Kang, Heekyoung; Seong, Gi-Sang; Sohn, Hae-Jin; Kim, Jong-Hyun; Lee, Sang-Eun; Park, Mi Yeoun; Lee, Won-Ja; Shin, Ho-Joon

    2015-10-01

    Increasing numbers of Primary Amoebic Meningoencephalitis (PAM) cases due to Naegleria fowleri are becoming a serious issue in subtropical and tropical countries as a Neglected Tropical Disease (NTD). To establish a rapid and effective diagnostic tool, a PCR-based detection technique was developed based on previous PCR methods. Four kinds of primer pairs, Nfa1, Nae3, Nf-ITS, and Naegl, were employed in the cultured amoebic trophozoites and a mouse with PAM experimentally developed by N. fowleri inoculation (PAM-mouse). For the extraction of genomic DNA from N. fowleri trophozoites (1×10(6)), simple boiling with 10μl of PBS (pH 7.4) at 100°C for 30min was found to be the most rapid and efficient procedure, allowing amplification of 2.5×10(2) trophozoites using the Nfa-1 primer. The primers Nfa1 and Nae3 amplified only N. fowleri DNA, whereas the ITS primer detected N. fowleri and N. gruberi DNA. Using the PAM-mouse brain tissue, the Nfa1 primer was able to amplify the N. fowleri DNA 4 days post infection with 1ng/μl of genomic DNA being detectable. Using the PAM-mouse CSF, amplification of the N. fowleri DNA with the Nae3 primer was possible 5 days post infection showing a better performance than the Nfa1 primer at day 6. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  12. Serum biochemical reference intervals for free-living Sand Tiger sharks (Carcharias taurus) from east Australian waters.

    Otway, Nicholas M

    2015-06-01

    Sharks are top-order predators in ocean food chains and the star attractions in aquaria worldwide. Unfortunately, blood biochemistry reference intervals (RI) have been determined for few species. The study aims to establish serum biochemical RI for free-living Sand Tiger sharks (Carcharias taurus) off eastern Australia. Thirty-seven sharks were captured and their sex, length, weight, reproductive maturity, and health status were recorded. After blood collection, serum analytes were quantified using standard analytical and statistical methods. Reference intervals, means, medians, and 90% confidence intervals were generated. Physiologic data from live and necropsied sharks were used to enhance the study results. Thirty healthy sharks were included in the study. Albumin could not be detected. With the exception of ALP activity, values were unaffected by sex, length, weight, age, and life-history stage. The means (RI) were: sodium 258 (249-267) mmol/L, potassium 5.0 (4.3-5.7) mmol/L, chloride 242 (227-257) mmol/L, inorganic phosphate 1.8 (1.7-2.0) mmol/L, total calcium 3.9 (3.3-4.4) mmol/L, magnesium 1.9 (1.6-2.2) mmol/L, glucose 2.7 (2.2-3.2) mmol/L, urea 377 (360-394) mmol/L, ALP 20 (8-31) U/L, ALT 3 U/L (no RI), AST 29 (13-45) U/L, CK 42 (5-79) U/L, total protein 30 (24-36) g/L, triglyceride 0.3 (0.1-0.6) mmol/L, cholesterol 1.4 (0.9-2.1) mmol/L, creatinine 32 μmol/L (no RI), total bilirubin 1.5 μmol/L (no RI), and osmolarity 1082 (1027-1136) mmol/L. These preliminary RI will assist with the clinical evaluation and treatment of captive and free-living Sand Tiger sharks worldwide. Studies with more animals will increase the precision of upper and lower reference limits. © 2015 American Society for Veterinary Clinical Pathology.

  13. Ecological transfer of radionuclides and metals to free-living earthworm species in natural habitats rich in NORM.

    Mrdakovic Popic, Jelena; Salbu, Brit; Skipperud, Lindis

    2012-01-01

    Transfer of radionuclides ((232)Th and (238)U) and associated metals (As, Cd, Pb and Cr) from soil to free-living earthworm species was investigated in a thorium ((232)Th) rich area in Norway. Sampling took place within former mining sites representing the technologically enhanced naturally occurring radioactive materials (TENORM), at undisturbed site with unique bedrock geology representing the naturally occurring radioactive materials (NORM) and at site outside the (232)Th rich area taken as reference Background site. Soil analysis revealed the elevated levels of investigated elements at NORM and TENORM sites. Based on sequential extraction, uranium ((238)U) and cadmium (Cd) were quite mobile, while the other elements were strongly associated with mineral components of soil. Four investigated earthworm species (Aporrectodea caliginosa, Aporrectodea rosea, Dendrodrilus rubidus and Lumbricus rubellus) showed large individual variability in the accumulation of radionuclides and metals. Differences in uptake by epigeic and endogeic species, as well as differences within same species from the NORM, TENORM and Background sites were also seen. Based on total concentrations in soil, the transfer factors (TF) were in ranges 0.03-0.08 and 0.09-0.25, for (232)Th and (238)U, respectively. TFs for lead (Pb), chromium (Cr) and arsenic (As) were low (less than 0.5), while TFs for Cd were higher (about 10). Using the ERICA tool, the estimated radiation exposure dose rate of the earthworms ranged from 2.2 to 3.9 μGy/h. The radiological risk for investigated earthworms was low (0.28). The obtained results demonstrated that free-living earthworm species can survive in soil containing elevated (232)Th and (238)U, as well As, Cd, Pb and Cr levels, although certain amount of radionuclides was accumulated within their bodies. The present investigation contributes to general better understanding of complex soil-to-biota transfer processes of radionuclides and metals and to assessment

  14. Ecological transfer of radionuclides and metals to free-living earthworm species in natural habitats rich in NORM

    Mrdakovic Popic, Jelena, E-mail: jelena.mrdakovic.popic@umb.no; Salbu, Brit; Skipperud, Lindis

    2012-01-01

    Transfer of radionuclides ({sup 232}Th and {sup 238}U) and associated metals (As, Cd, Pb and Cr) from soil to free-living earthworm species was investigated in a thorium ({sup 232}Th) rich area in Norway. Sampling took place within former mining sites representing the technologically enhanced naturally occurring radioactive materials (TENORM), at undisturbed site with unique bedrock geology representing the naturally occurring radioactive materials (NORM) and at site outside the {sup 232}Th rich area taken as reference Background site. Soil analysis revealed the elevated levels of investigated elements at NORM and TENORM sites. Based on sequential extraction, uranium ({sup 238}U) and cadmium (Cd) were quite mobile, while the other elements were strongly associated with mineral components of soil. Four investigated earthworm species (Aporrectodea caliginosa, Aporrectodea rosea, Dendrodrilus rubidus and Lumbricus rubellus) showed large individual variability in the accumulation of radionuclides and metals. Differences in uptake by epigeic and endogeic species, as well as differences within same species from the NORM, TENORM and Background sites were also seen. Based on total concentrations in soil, the transfer factors (TF) were in ranges 0.03-0.08 and 0.09-0.25, for {sup 232}Th and {sup 238}U, respectively. TFs for lead (Pb), chromium (Cr) and arsenic (As) were low (less than 0.5), while TFs for Cd were higher (about 10). Using the ERICA tool, the estimated radiation exposure dose rate of the earthworms ranged from 2.2 to 3.9 {mu}Gy/h. The radiological risk for investigated earthworms was low (0.28). The obtained results demonstrated that free-living earthworm species can survive in soil containing elevated {sup 232}Th and {sup 238}U, as well As, Cd, Pb and Cr levels, although certain amount of radionuclides was accumulated within their bodies. The present investigation contributes to general better understanding of complex soil-to-biota transfer processes of

  15. Evaluation of an activity monitor for the objective measurement of free-living physical activity in children with cerebral palsy.

    Tang, Kit Tzu; Richardson, Alison M; Maxwell, Douglas; Spence, William D; Stansfield, Benedict W

    2013-12-01

    To explore the use of an activity monitor (AM) to objectively characterize free-living physical activity (F-LPA) in children with mobility impairment resulting from cerebral palsy (CP). First, a validation study compared outcomes from the AM with video evidence. Second, multiday F-LPA was characterized. Relationships between laboratory measures and F-LPA were explored. The evaluation study was conducted in a laboratory environment. F-LPA monitoring was conducted in the participants' free-living environment. Convenience sample of ambulatory children (N=15; 11 boys, 4 girls) aged 5 to 17 years with CP undergoing gait analysis. Not applicable. Accuracy of the AM for sitting/lying time, upright time, stepping time, and strides taken. Daily volumes of F-LPA of children with CP. AM outcomes in comparison with video-based analysis were (mean ± SD) 97.4%±2.7%, 101.1%±1.5%, 99.5%±6.6%, 105.6%±15.8%, and 103.8%±10.1% for sitting/lying time, upright time, standing time, stepping time, and stride count, respectively. Participants' daily F-LPA demonstrated considerable variation: mean standing time ± SD, 2.33±.96h/d; mean stepping time ± SD, 1.68±.86h/d; mean steps per day ± SD, 8477±4528; and mean sit-to-stand transitions per day ± SD, 76±49. Laboratory-measured cadence and mobility level were related to F-LPA, but not directly. The AM demonstrated excellent ability to determine sitting/lying and upright times in children with CP. Stepping time and stride count had lower levels of agreement with video-based analysis but were comparable to findings in previous studies. Crouch gait and toe walking had an adverse effect on outcomes. The F-LPA data provided additional information on children's performance not related to laboratory measures, demonstrating the added value of using this objective measurement technique. Copyright © 2013 American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Evaluating the use of testate amoebae for palaeohydrological reconstruction in permafrost peatlands

    Swindles, Graeme T.; Amesbury, Matthew J.; Turner, T. Edward; Carrivick, Jonathan L.; Woulds, Clare; Raby, Cassandra; Mullan, Donal; Roland, Thomas P.; Galloway, Jennifer M.; Parry, Lauren; Kokfelt, Ulla; Garneau, Michelle; Charman, Dan J.; Holden, Joseph

    2015-01-01

    The melting of high-latitude permafrost peatlands is a major concern due to a potential positive feedback on global climate change. We examine the ecology of testate amoebae in permafrost peatlands, based on sites in Sweden (~ 200 km north of the Arctic Circle). Multivariate statistical analysis confirms that water-table depth and moisture content are the dominant controls on the distribution of testate amoebae, corroborating the results from studies in mid-latitude peatlands. We present a ne...

  17. Amoeba-related health risk in drinking water systems: could monitoring of amoebae be a complementary approach to current quality control strategies?

    Codony, Francesc; Pérez, Leonardo Martín; Adrados, Bárbara; Agustí, Gemma; Fittipaldi, Mariana; Morató, Jordi

    2012-01-01

    Culture-based methods for fecal indicator microorganisms are the standard protocol to assess potential health risk from drinking water systems. However, these traditional fecal indicators are inappropriate surrogates for disinfection-resistant fecal pathogens and the indigenous pathogens that grow in drinking water systems. There is now a range of molecular-based methods, such as quantitative PCR, which allow detection of a variety of pathogens and alternative indicators. Hence, in addition to targeting total Escherichia coli (i.e., dead and alive) for the detection of fecal pollution, various amoebae may be suitable to indicate the potential presence of pathogenic amoeba-resisting microorganisms, such as Legionellae. Therefore, monitoring amoeba levels by quantitative PCR could be a useful tool for directly and indirectly evaluating health risk and could also be a complementary approach to current microbial quality control strategies for drinking water systems.

  18. AMOEBA Polarizable Force Field Parameters of the Heme Cofactor in Its Ferrous and Ferric Forms.

    Wu, Xiaojing; Clavaguera, Carine; Lagardère, Louis; Piquemal, Jean-Philip; de la Lande, Aurélien

    2018-04-16

    We report the first parameters of the heme redox cofactors for the polarizable AMOEBA force field in both the ferric and ferrous forms. We consider two types of complexes, one with two histidine side chains as axial ligands and one with a histidine and a methionine side chain as ligands. We have derived permanent multipoles from second-order Møller-Plesset perturbation theory (MP2). The sets of parameters have been validated in a first step by comparison of AMOEBA interaction energies of heme and a collection of biologically relevant molecules with MP2 and Density Functional Theory (DFT) calculations. In a second validation step, we consider interaction energies with large aggregates comprising around 80 H 2 O molecules. These calculations are repeated for 30 structures extracted from semiempirical PM7 DM simulations. Very encouraging agreement is found between DFT and the AMOEBA force field, which results from an accurate treatment of electrostatic interactions. We finally report long (10 ns) MD simulations of cytochromes in two redox states with AMOEBA testing both the 2003 and 2014 AMOEBA water models. These simulations have been carried out with the TINKER-HP (High Performance) program. In conclusion, owing to their ubiquity in biology, we think the present work opens a wide array of applications of the polarizable AMOEBA force field on hemeproteins.

  19. Diversity and community ecology of forest epiphyte testate amoebae from European Russia.

    Payne, Richard J; Belyakova, Olga; Mazei, Yuri

    2015-10-01

    Testate amoebae are an abundant group of microorganisms which make a significant contribution to the diversity of protist life. Most of the world's potential habitats for testate amoebae have been barely studied and when such places are investigated they frequently reveal novel communities and species. Here we consider the testate amoeba communities associated with boreal forest epiphytes (mosses and lichens); an environment which we argue has been under-researched. We present a dataset of 165 samples from four regions of western Russia and analyse these data in relation to micro-habitat position and selected environmental data. The testate amoebae of epiphytes are abundant but dominated by ubiquitous species. We show that there are trends toward a lower species richness and test concentration with greater elevation on the trunk and in lichens compared to mosses. There are considerable differences in community composition between sampling regions. Of all measured environmental variables only moisture content showed a significant relationship with testate amoeba community structure. Our data highlight how little is known about testate amoeba communities of this habitat and call for greater research efforts, particularly in less-studied regions and biomes. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  20. Behavioural differentiation induced by environmental variation when crossing a toxic zone in an amoeba

    Kunita, Itsuki; Kuroda, Shigeru; Nakagaki, Toshiyuki; Ueda, Kei-Ichi; Akita, Dai

    2017-01-01

    Organisms choose from among various courses of action in response to a wide variety of environmental conditions and the mechanism by which various behaviours are induced is an open question. Interesting behaviour was recently reported: that a unicellular organism of slime mold Physarum polycephalum known as an amoeba had multiple responses (crossing, returning, etc) when the amoeba encounters a zone with toxic levels of quinine, even under carefully controlled conditions. We here examined this elegant example in more detail to obtain insight into behavioural differentiation. We found that the statistical distribution of passage times across a quinine zone switch from unimodal to bimodal (with peaks corresponding to fast crossing and no crossing) when a periodic light stimulation to modulate a biorhythm in amoeba is applied homogeneously across the space, even under the same level of chemical stimuli. Based on a mathematical model for cell movement in amoeba, we successfully reproduced the stimulation-induced differentiation, which was observed experimentally. These dynamics may be explained by a saddle structure around a canard solution. Our results imply that the differentiation of behavioural types in amoeba is modified step-by-step via the compounding of stimulation inputs. The complex behaviour like the differentiation in amoeba may provide a basis for understanding the mechanism of behaviour selection in higher animals from an ethological perspective. (paper)

  1. Behavioural differentiation induced by environmental variation when crossing a toxic zone in an amoeba

    Kunita, Itsuki; Ueda, Kei-Ichi; Akita, Dai; Kuroda, Shigeru; Nakagaki, Toshiyuki

    2017-09-01

    Organisms choose from among various courses of action in response to a wide variety of environmental conditions and the mechanism by which various behaviours are induced is an open question. Interesting behaviour was recently reported: that a unicellular organism of slime mold Physarum polycephalum known as an amoeba had multiple responses (crossing, returning, etc) when the amoeba encounters a zone with toxic levels of quinine, even under carefully controlled conditions. We here examined this elegant example in more detail to obtain insight into behavioural differentiation. We found that the statistical distribution of passage times across a quinine zone switch from unimodal to bimodal (with peaks corresponding to fast crossing and no crossing) when a periodic light stimulation to modulate a biorhythm in amoeba is applied homogeneously across the space, even under the same level of chemical stimuli. Based on a mathematical model for cell movement in amoeba, we successfully reproduced the stimulation-induced differentiation, which was observed experimentally. These dynamics may be explained by a saddle structure around a canard solution. Our results imply that the differentiation of behavioural types in amoeba is modified step-by-step via the compounding of stimulation inputs. The complex behaviour like the differentiation in amoeba may provide a basis for understanding the mechanism of behaviour selection in higher animals from an ethological perspective.

  2. Response of free-living nitrogen-fixing microorganisms to land use change in the Amazon rainforest.

    Mirza, Babur S; Potisap, Chotima; Nüsslein, Klaus; Bohannan, Brendan J M; Rodrigues, Jorge L M

    2014-01-01

    The Amazon rainforest, the largest equatorial forest in the world, is being cleared for pasture and agricultural use at alarming rates. Tropical deforestation is known to cause alterations in microbial communities at taxonomic and phylogenetic levels, but it is unclear whether microbial functional groups are altered. We asked whether free-living nitrogen-fixing microorganisms (diazotrophs) respond to deforestation in the Amazon rainforest, using analysis of the marker gene nifH. Clone libraries were generated from soil samples collected from a primary forest, a 5-year-old pasture originally converted from primary forest, and a secondary forest established after pasture abandonment. Although diazotroph richness did not significantly change among the three plots, diazotroph community composition was altered with forest-to-pasture conversion, and phylogenetic similarity was higher among pasture communities than among those in forests. There was also 10-fold increase in nifH gene abundance following conversion from primary forest to pasture. Three environmental factors were associated with the observed changes: soil acidity, total N concentration, and C/N ratio. Our results suggest a partial restoration to initial levels of abundance and community structure of diazotrophs following pasture abandonment, with primary and secondary forests sharing similar communities. We postulate that the response of diazotrophs to land use change is a direct consequence of changes in plant communities, particularly the higher N demand of pasture plant communities for supporting aboveground plant growth.

  3. Effect of water and nitrogen additions on free-living nitrogen fixer populations in desert grass root zones.

    Herman, R P; Provencio, K R; Torrez, R J; Seager, G M

    1993-01-01

    In this study we measured changes in population levels of free-living N2-fixing bacteria in the root zones of potted Bouteloua eriopoda and Sporobolus flexuosus plants as well as the photosynthetic indices of the plants in response to added nitrogen, added water, and added water plus nitrogen treatments. In addition, N2 fixer population changes in response to added carbon source and nitrogen were measured in plant-free soil columns. There were significant increases in the numbers of N2 fixers associated with both plant species in the water and the water plus nitrogen treatments. Both treatments increased the photosynthetic index, suggesting that plant exudates were driving N2 fixer population changes. Population increases were greatest in the water plus nitrogen treatments, indicating that added nitrogen was synergistic with added water and suggesting that nitrogen addition spared bacteria the metabolic cost of N2 fixation, allowing greater reproduction. Plant-free column studies demonstrated a synergistic carbon-nitrogen effect when carbon levels were limiting (low malate addition) but not when carbon was abundant (high malate), further supporting this hypothesis. The results of this study indicate the presence of N2 fixer populations which interact with plants and which may play a role in the nitrogen balance of desert grasslands. PMID:8215373

  4. Environmental and hormonal factors in seasonal breeding in free-living male Indian rose-ringed parakeets (Psittacula krameri).

    Krishnaprasadan, T N; Kotak, V C; Sharp, P J; Schmedemann, R; Haase, E

    1988-12-01

    Seasonal changes in testicular activity, plasma luteinizing hormone (LH), estradiol (E2), testosterone (T), and 5 alpha-dihydrotestosterone (5 alpha-DHT) were related to pair bond formation, nest building, nest defense, and parental behavior in free-living Indian rose-ringed parakeets (Psittacula krameri) in northwest India. Spermatozoa production occurred between January and March when daylengths were short (10-12 hr) and ambient temperature was seasonally low (8-20 degrees C). At other times of the year the testes were regressed. Plasma LH levels increased during the prebreeding period (September-December) when the birds were forming pairs and selecting or defending nest sites. Plasma LH levels increased further between January and March and decreased to seasonal low values during the post breeding period between April and June when the birds were caring for young. Concentrations of plasma androgens and estrogens were similar during the prebreeding and postbreeding phases of the breeding cycle. During the breeding period, the ratios between plasma 5 alpha-DHT and testosterone and between plasma estradiol and testosterone increased. It is proposed that the absence of marked seasonal changes in plasma steroid levels is related to nest defense behavior which occurs during the prebreeding, breeding, and postbreeding phases of the breeding cycle. Winter breeding makes it possible for the parakeets to avoid competition with other birds for nesting sites, to avoid fledging young during the monsoon period, and to take advantage of the winter pea crop which provides the female with extra nutrients for egg production.

  5. Effects of commonly used chemical fertilizers on development of free-living stages of Haemonchus contortus in experimentally infected pasture

    Tapas Kumar Roul

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Aim: The effects of N-P-K fertilizers in the form of urea, single super phosphate and muriate of potash on development of free-living stages of Haemonchus contortus were studied. Materials and Methods: Five parasite free experimental plots of 1 mx1 m area, each of paddy leaves (15-day-old and an equal number of Cynodon dactylon grass were infested with about 10x104 eggs/ml phosphate buffer saline along with the application of the calculated amount of fertilizers solution. On the 10th day of posttreatment, the pasture was cut, processed, larvae recovered by Baermann method and counted, which was expressed as number of L3 per kg dry matter (DM of pasture. Results: The average recovered population of L3 of H. contortus per kg DM varied significantly (p0.05. Conclusion: This study shown that when N-P-K fertilizers administered at recommended level, significantly reduced larval translation of H. contortus minimizing pasture infectivity for the free range grazing animals.

  6. Hind limb malformations in free-living northern leopard frogs (Rana pipiens) from Maine, Minnesota, and Vermont suggest multiple etiologies

    Meteyer, C.U.; Loeffler, I.K.; Fallon, J.F.; Converse, K.A.; Green, E.; Helgen, J.C.; Kersten, S.; Levey, R.; Eaton-Poole, L.; Burkhart, J.G.

    2000-01-01

    Background Reports of malformed frogs have increased throughout the North American continent in recent years. Most of the observed malformations have involved the hind limbs. The goal of this study was to accurately characterize the hind limb malformations in wild frogs as an important step toward understanding the possible etiologies. Methods During 1997 and 1998, 182 recently metamorphosed northern leopard frogs (Rana pipiens) were collected from Minnesota, Vermont, and Maine. Malformed hind limbs were present in 157 (86%) of these frogs, which underwent necropsy and radiographic evaluation at the National Wildlife Health Center. These malformations are described in detail and classified into four major categories: (1) no limb (amelia); (2) multiple limbs or limb elements (polymelia, polydactyly, polyphalangy); (3) reduced limb segments or elements (phocomelia, ectromelia, ectrodactyly, and brachydactyly; and (4) distally complete but malformed limb (bone rotations, bridging, skin webbing, and micromelia). Results Amelia and reduced segments and/or elements were the most common finding. Frogs with bilateral hind limb malformations were not common, and in only eight of these 22 frogs were the malformations symmetrical. Malformations of a given type tended to occur in frogs collected from the same site, but the types of malformations varied widely among all three states, and between study sites within Minnesota. Conclusions Clustering of malformation type suggests that developmental events may produce a variety of phenotypes depending on the timing, sequence, and severity of the environmental insult. Hind limb malformations in free-living frogs transcend current mechanistic explanations of tetrapod limb development.

  7. Complete mitochondrial genome of the free-living earwig, Challia fletcheri (Dermaptera: Pygidicranidae and phylogeny of Polyneoptera.

    Xinlong Wan

    Full Text Available The insect order Dermaptera, belonging to Polyneoptera, includes ∼2,000 extant species, but no dermapteran mitochondrial genome has been sequenced. We sequenced the complete mitochondrial genome of the free-living earwig, Challia fletcheri, compared its genomic features to other available mitochondrial sequences from polyneopterous insects. In addition, the Dermaptera, together with the other known polyneopteran mitochondrial genome sequences (protein coding, ribosomal RNA, and transfer RNA genes, were employed to understand the phylogeny of Polyneoptera, one of the least resolved insect phylogenies, with emphasis on the placement of Dermaptera. The complete mitochondrial genome of C. fletcheri presents the following several unusual features: the longest size in insects is 20,456 bp; it harbors the largest tandem repeat units (TRU among insects; it displays T- and G-skewness on the major strand and A- and C-skewness on the minor strand, which is a reversal of the general pattern found in most insect mitochondrial genomes, and it possesses a unique gene arrangement characterized by a series of gene translocations and/or inversions. The reversal pattern of skewness is explained in terms of inversion of replication origin. All phylogenetic analyses consistently placed Dermaptera as the sister to Plecoptera, leaving them as the most basal lineage of Polyneoptera or sister to Ephemeroptera, and placed Odonata consistently as the most basal lineage of the Pterygota.

  8. Simultaneous measurement of free-living energy expenditure by the doubly labeled water method and heart-rate monitoring

    Livingstone, M.B.; Prentice, A.M.; Coward, W.A.; Ceesay, S.M.; Strain, J.J.; McKenna, P.G.; Nevin, G.B.; Barker, M.E.; Hickey, R.J.

    1990-01-01

    Total energy expenditure (TEE) was measured simultaneously in 14 free-living adults over 15 d by the doubly labeled water (DLW) method and for 2-4 separate days by heart-rate (HR) monitoring. Individual curves for HR vs oxygen consumption (VO2) were obtained and an HR (FLEX HR: 97 +/- 8 beats/min, range 84-113 beats/min) that discriminated between rest and activity was identified. Calibration curves were used to assign an energy value to daytime HR above FLEX HR. Below FLEX HR energy expenditure was taken as resting metabolism. Sleeping energy expenditure was assumed to be equal to basal metabolic rate. Average HR TEE (12.99 +/- 3.83 MJ/d) and average DLW TEE (12.89 +/- 3.80 MJ/d) were similar. HR TEE discrepancies ranged from -22.2% to +52.1%, with nine values lying within +/- 10% of DLW TEE estimates. The FLEX HR method provides a close estimation of the TEE of population groups. However, an increased number of sampling days may improve the precision of individual estimates of TEE

  9. Vitamin D status and its associated factors of free living Malay adults in a tropical country, Malaysia.

    Moy, Foong Ming

    2011-09-02

    Vitamin D status is influenced by sun exposure, geographic latitude, daily outdoor activities, body surface exposed to sunlight and dietary intakes. Malaysia, is sunny all year round. However, the vitamin D status of this population especially among the healthy and free living adults is not known. Therefore a study of vitamin D status and associated factors was initiated among an existing Malay cohort in Kuala Lumpur. A total of 380 subjects were sampled to have their vitamin D status assessed using 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D). A short questionnaire enquiring socio-demographic characteristics, exposure to sunlight and clothing style was administered. Their mean age was 48.5±5.2years and the mean 25(OH)D for males and females were 56.2±18.9nmol/L and 36.2±13.4nmol/L respectively. There were significant positive correlation for sun exposure score (r=0.27, pobesity, lifestyle behaviours and clothing style are directly associated with our participants especially females' low vitamin D status. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  10. Effects of exercise training and a hypocaloric diet on female monozygotic twins in free-living conditions.

    Koenigstorfer, Joerg; Schmidt, Walter F J

    2011-10-24

    This paper aims to examine the similarities in effects of exercise training and a hypocaloric diet within overweight female monozygotic twin pairs and to assess differences in twin partners' responses depending on the timing of exercise bouts and main meals. Six previously untrained twin pairs (aged 20-37 years, body fat 35.8±6.3%) performed an identical exercise program (12 bouts endurance and 8 bouts resistance training) and took part in a nutrition counseling program for a period of 28 days. They pursued one identical goal: to lose body weight and fat. Each twin partner was randomly assigned to one of the two intervention groups: "exercise after dinner" (A) and "exercise before dinner" (B). Subjects followed a hypocaloric diet, supervised by a nutritionist, in free-living conditions. Reductions in body weight, waist and hip circumference, glucose tolerance, mean daily %fat intake, changes in morning resting energy rate and resting metabolic rate showed great variation between twin pairs, but only small variation within twin pairs. Thus, the genetic influence on the changes in most of the examined anthropometric and physiological variables was high. There was no influence of the specific timing on the dependent variables. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Seroprevalence of Toxoplasma gondii in free-living European mouflon (Ovis orientalis musimon hunted in central Germany

    Heddergott Mike

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Despite increasing consumption of mouflon (Ovis orientalis musimon meat in Germany, there is currently no surveillance of Toxoplasma gondii infection in populations of these animals and generally little knowledge about the prevalence of this protozoan in German wild ungulates. Between 2011 and 2015, we collected 138 blood samples from a free-living mouflon population in central German and tested sera for the presence of T. gondii antibodies using a modified agglutination test (MAT, cut-off 1:20. Antibodies were detected in 31 of the 138 samples (22.46%. There was a significant difference in seroprevalence between the different age classes, with antibodies to T. gondii more frequent in adults. In contrast, there was no significant difference in seroprevalence depending on sex and year of sample collection. Game meat is frequently consumed as raw or undercooked meat and may therefore represent a potential source of human infection with T. gondii.

  12. Detection of zoonotic and livestock-specific assemblages of Giardia duodenalis in free-living wild lizards

    Aurora Reboredo-Fernández

    Full Text Available Abstract Giardia duodenalis is a zoonotic parasite that infects the gut of a wide range of vertebrates, including numerous wildlife species. However, little is known about this protozoan parasite in reptiles. Fecal samples from 31 wild lizards were collected in Galicia (northwest Spain and screened for the presence of Giardia by PCR amplification and sequencing of the ITS1-5.8S-ITS2 region in the ribosomal unit. This allowed detection of the parasite in 5 samples (16.1%, and enabled identification of G. duodenalis assemblage A2 in two samples of Iberian rock lizard (Iberolacerta monticola, G. duodenalis assemblage B in other two samples of I. monticola, and G. duodenalis assemblage E in one sample of Bocage’s wall lizard (Podarcis bocagei. The results obtained after PCR amplification and sequencing of the SSU-rDNA gene confirmed the presence of G. duodenalis assemblage A in two samples of I. monticola. This is the first report of G. duodenalis in free-living lizards, although further studies are needed to distinguish between actual infection and mechanical dissemination of cysts. The detection of zoonotic and livestock-specific assemblages of G. duodenalis demonstrates the wide environmental contamination by this parasite, possibly due to human activities.

  13. Dynamic nano-imaging of label-free living cells using electron beam excitation-assisted optical microscope

    Fukuta, Masahiro; Kanamori, Satoshi; Furukawa, Taichi; Nawa, Yasunori; Inami, Wataru; Lin, Sheng; Kawata, Yoshimasa; Terakawa, Susumu

    2015-01-01

    Optical microscopes are effective tools for cellular function analysis because biological cells can be observed non-destructively and non-invasively in the living state in either water or atmosphere condition. Label-free optical imaging technique such as phase-contrast microscopy has been analysed many cellular functions, and it is essential technology for bioscience field. However, the diffraction limit of light makes it is difficult to image nano-structures in a label-free living cell, for example the endoplasmic reticulum, the Golgi body and the localization of proteins. Here we demonstrate the dynamic imaging of a label-free cell with high spatial resolution by using an electron beam excitation-assisted optical (EXA) microscope. We observed the dynamic movement of the nucleus and nano-scale granules in living cells with better than 100 nm spatial resolution and a signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) around 10. Our results contribute to the development of cellular function analysis and open up new bioscience applications. PMID:26525841

  14. Dynamic nano-imaging of label-free living cells using electron beam excitation-assisted optical microscope.

    Fukuta, Masahiro; Kanamori, Satoshi; Furukawa, Taichi; Nawa, Yasunori; Inami, Wataru; Lin, Sheng; Kawata, Yoshimasa; Terakawa, Susumu

    2015-11-03

    Optical microscopes are effective tools for cellular function analysis because biological cells can be observed non-destructively and non-invasively in the living state in either water or atmosphere condition. Label-free optical imaging technique such as phase-contrast microscopy has been analysed many cellular functions, and it is essential technology for bioscience field. However, the diffraction limit of light makes it is difficult to image nano-structures in a label-free living cell, for example the endoplasmic reticulum, the Golgi body and the localization of proteins. Here we demonstrate the dynamic imaging of a label-free cell with high spatial resolution by using an electron beam excitation-assisted optical (EXA) microscope. We observed the dynamic movement of the nucleus and nano-scale granules in living cells with better than 100 nm spatial resolution and a signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) around 10. Our results contribute to the development of cellular function analysis and open up new bioscience applications.

  15. Serosurvey for antibodies to malignant catarrhal fever-associated viruses in free-living and captive cervids in Germany.

    Frölich, K; Li, H; Müller-Doblies, U

    1998-10-01

    A total of 486 serum samples collected from several species of both free-living and captive cervids in Germany was examined for antibodies against malignant catarrhal fever (MCF)-associated viruses (MCFV) by a competitive-inhibition enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (CI-ELISA). Eleven (2%) of these samples were positive for antibodies against MCFV. Among 157 serum samples collected from 16 different species of captive deer including four (7%) of 54 fallow deer and one (7%) of 14 sika deer (Cervus nippon) were seropositive. Among 329 samples from three species of free-ranging deer, including 253 roe deer (Capreolus capreolus), 22 red deer (Cervus elaphus) and 54 fallow deer (Cervus dama), only fallow deer were antibody-positive. Of the 25 fallow deer samples collected between 1990 and 1993, four (16%) were seropositive. Among 29 free-ranging fallow deer samples collected in the hunting period 1996-1997, antibodies to MCFV were detected in two (7%) of these sera. All of these fallow deer samples were collected from a circumscribed area in northern Germany. In the same area a high seroprevalence (72%) to MCFV was observed in domestic sheep (n = 50). Among 20 sheep samples (buffy coat) and 15 fallow deer samples (spleen or lymph nodes) examined for ovine herpesvirus 2 (OvHV-2) by PCR, all 20 sheep samples examined were OvHV-2 positive, but all of the 15 fallow deer samples, including seven seropositive deer, were OvHV-2 negative.

  16. Body mass index, life-style, and healthy status in free living elderly people in Menorca Island.

    Ferra, A; Bibiloni, M Del Mar; Zapata, M E; Pich, J; Pons, A; Tur, J A

    2012-04-01

    To assess the BMI, life-style, and healthy status, and explore relationships between these parameters, among Menorca's free living elderly people. A cross-sectional survey carried out in Menorca Island in 2009. A random sample (n=450) of the elderly population (≥65 years) was interviewed. Anthropometric measurements and a general questionnaire incorporating questions related to socio-demographic and life-style factors and health status were used. Approximately five per cent of elders were underweight and 60% overweight or obese. Underweight were positively and overweight and obesity negatively affected by age. The prevalence of central obesity, according to the WC cut-off points, was 66.8% in men and 85.1% in women. Low education, socioeconomic status and physical activity were risk factors for malnutrition and overweight/obesity. A possible cognitive impairment was found among elderly persons with BMIrelation between BMI and diabetes mellitus, arthritis, and chronic bronchitis, and an inverted J-shape between BMI and gastric ulcer, osteoporosis and bone fractures, cancer, and prostatitis (in men) were found. Both low and high BMI are associated with a wide range of prevalent conditions and diseases in Menorca elderly men and women.

  17. Consistent patterns of high alpha and low beta diversity in tropical parasitic and free-living protists.

    Lentendu, Guillaume; Mahé, Frédéric; Bass, David; Rueckert, Sonja; Stoeck, Thorsten; Dunthorn, Micah

    2018-05-30

    Tropical animals and plants are known to have high alpha diversity within forests, but low beta diversity between forests. By contrast, it is unknown whether microbes inhabiting the same ecosystems exhibit similar biogeographic patterns. To evaluate the biogeographies of tropical protists, we used metabarcoding data of species sampled in the soils of three lowland Neotropical rainforests. Taxa-area and distance-decay relationships for three of the dominant protist taxa and their subtaxa were estimated at both the OTU and phylogenetic levels, with presence-absence and abundance-based measures. These estimates were compared to null models. High local alpha and low regional beta diversity patterns were consistently found for both the parasitic Apicomplexa and the largely free-living Cercozoa and Ciliophora. Similar to animals and plants, the protists showed spatial structures between forests at the OTU and phylogenetic levels, and only at the phylogenetic level within forests. These results suggest that the biogeographies of macro- and micro-organismal eukaryotes in lowland Neotropical rainforests are partially structured by the same general processes. However, and unlike the animals and plants, the protist OTUs did not exhibit spatial structures within forests, which hinders our ability to estimate the local and regional diversity of protists in tropical forests. © 2018 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  18. Free-living nematode species (Nematoda) dwelling in hydrothermal sites of the North Mid-Atlantic Ridge

    Tchesunov, Alexei V.

    2015-12-01

    Morphological descriptions of seven free-living nematode species from hydrothermal sites of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge are presented. Four of them are new for science: Paracanthonchus olgae sp. n. (Chromadorida, Cyatholaimidae), Prochromadora helenae sp. n. (Chromadorida, Chromadoridae), Prochaetosoma ventriverruca sp. n. (Desmodorida, Draconematidae) and Leptolaimus hydrothermalis sp. n. (Plectida, Leptolaimidae). Two species have been previously recorded in hydrothermal habitats, and one species is recorded for the first time in such an environment. Oncholaimus scanicus (Enoplida, Oncholaimidae) was formerly known from only the type locality in non-hydrothermal shallow milieu of the Norway Sea. O. scanicus is a very abundant species in Menez Gwen, Lucky Strike and Lost City hydrothermal sites, and population of the last locality differs from other two in some morphometric characteristics. Desmodora marci (Desmodorida, Desmodoridae) was previously known from other remote deep-sea hydrothermal localities in south-western and north-eastern Pacific. Halomonhystera vandoverae (Monhysterida, Monhysteridae) was described and repeatedly found in mass in Snake Pit hydrothermal site. The whole hydrothermal nematode assemblages are featured by low diversity in comparison with either shelf or deep-sea non-hydrothermal communities. The nematode species list of the Atlantic hydrothermal vents consists of representatives of common shallow-water genera; the new species are also related to some shelf species. On the average, the hydrothermal species differ from those of slope and abyssal plains of comparable depths by larger sizes, diversity of buccal structures, presence of food content in the gut and ripe eggs in uteri.

  19. A study of nucleo-cytoplasmic large DNA viruses: detection and characterization of viruses in environmental amoeba

    Fugas, Mariana Costa

    2012-01-01

    Tese de mestrado. Biologia (Biologia Molecular e Genética). Universidade de Lisboa, Faculdade de Ciências, 2012 Amoeba associated microorganisms (ARMs) are bacteria or viruses that share a symbiotic relationship with amoebas. Many ARMs are associated with human diseases and it has been reported the acquisition of resistance inside their host. These facts highlight the importance of finding and characterizing ARMs in a public health’s perspective. In the present work, amoebas from environme...

  20. Oxidative stress physiology in relation to life history traits of a free-living vertebrate : the spotted snow skink, Niveoscincus ocellatus

    Isaksson, Caroline; While, Geoffrey M.; Olsson, Mats; Komdeur, Jan; Wapstra, Erik

    Recent research suggests that oxidative stress, via its links to metabolism and senescence, is a key mechanism linking life history traits such as fecundity and growth with survival; however, this has rarely been put under empirical scrutiny within free-living populations. Using a wild population of

  1. Dentition and Life History of a 16-year-old Known-age Free-living Male Lion Panthera leo (Linnaeus, 1758 from the Kruger National Park

    I.J. Whyte

    1988-10-01

    Full Text Available Wear in the dentition of a known-age, free-living, 16-year-old male lion is described and compared to existing age-determination techniques. Aspects of his life history are described as they are in some contrast to what is known of male lions' life history strategies.

  2. Low validity of the Sensewear Pro3 activity monitor compared to indirect calorimetry during simulated free living in patients with osteoarthritis of the hip

    Hermann, Andreas; Ried-Larsen, Mathias; Jensen, Andreas Emil Kryger

    2014-01-01

    BACKGROUND: To validate physical activity estimates by the Sensewear Pro3 activity monitor compared with indirect calorimetry during simulated free living in patients diagnosed with osteoarthritis of the hip pre or post total hip arthroplasty. METHODS: Twenty patients diagnosed with hip osteoarth...

  3. Data from: Not all are free-living: high-throughput DNA metabarcoding reveals a diverse community of protists parasitizing soil metazoa

    Geisen, Stefan; Laros, I.; Vizcaino, A.; Bonkowski, M.; Groot, de G.A.

    2015-01-01

    Protists, the most diverse eukaryotes, are largely considered to be free-living bacterivores, but vast numbers of taxa are known to parasitize plants or animals. High-throughput sequencing (HTS) approaches now commonly replace cultivation-based approaches in studying soil protists, but insights into

  4. The Effect of Land-use Change and Management on Free-living N2 fixation in the Brazilian Atlantic Forest

    De Oliveira Bomfim, B.; Silva, L. C. R.; Horwath, W. R.; Hello, J.; Doane, T. A.

    2016-12-01

    Globally, primary tropical forests are increasingly disturbed by deforestation, urbanization, agriculture, and cattle ranching. It has been recognized that the resulting (secondary) forests now play a key role in global biogeochemical cycles; however, little is known about alterations in forest function caused by the combination of disturbance and land use change. Fire, deforestation, and forest-to-monocrop conversion are all likely to affect biotic N inputs, yet our understanding of how free-living N2 fixation influences ecosystem response after disturbance remains poorly understood. Our research is assessing the role of asymbiotic (free-living) biological nitrogen fixation (BNF), a microbially-mediated process responsible for providing N inputs across terrestrial ecosystems and modulating the effect of fire and land cover in secondary forest succession. Free-living BNF is being quantified through incubations using stable isotope (15N2 labeling experiment) in different substrates (soil and leaf litter) under contrasting land use and management in the Brazilian Atlantic Forest, the most deforested Biome in Brazil with only 7% of its original cover. Soil and litter samples were collected in primary forests, 12-year secondary forests, Eucalyptus spp. plantations and 10-year Brachiaria brizantha pastures. Preliminary results indicate that free-living BNF rates did not vary significantly between either secondary land use (0.02 to 0.46 µg N2 fixed gDW-1 h-1), but rates were significantly higher in the litter layer (0.32 to 3.8 µg N2 fixed gDW-1 h-1) than in the surface soil (0 - 10 cm and 10 - 30 cm). Free-living BNF in this stretch of the Brazilian Atlantic Forest seems not to be significantly affected by contrasting land use and management.

  5. Real-time Fatigue and Free-Living Physical Activity in Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation Cancer Survivors and Healthy Controls: A Preliminary Examination of the Temporal, Dynamic Relationship.

    Hacker, Eileen Danaher; Kim, Inah; Park, Chang; Peters, Tara

    Fatigue and physical inactivity, critical problems facing cancer survivors, impact overall health and functioning. Our group designed a novel methodology to evaluate the temporal, dynamic patterns in real-world settings. Using real-time technology, the temporal, dynamic relationship between real-time fatigue and free-living is described and compared in cancer survivors who were treated with hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (n = 25) and age- and gender-matched healthy controls (n = 25). Subjects wore wrist actigraphs on their nondominant hand to assess free-living physical activity, measured in 1-minute epochs, over 7 days. Subjects entered real-time fatigue assessments directly into the subjective event marker of the actigraph 5 times per day. Running averages of mean 1-minute activity counts 30, 60, and 120 minutes before and after each real-time fatigue score were correlated with real-time fatigue using generalized estimating equations, RESULTS:: A strong inverse relationship exists between real-time fatigue and subsequent free-living physical activity. This inverse relationship suggests that increasing real-time fatigue limits subsequent physical activity (B range= -0.002 to -0.004; P < .001). No significant differences in the dynamic patterns of real-time fatigue and free-living physical activity were found between groups. To our knowledge, this is the first study to document the temporal and potentially causal relationship between real-time fatigue and free-living physical activity in real-world setting. These findings suggest that fatigue drives the subsequent physical activity and the relationship may not be bidirectional. Understanding the temporal, dynamic relationship may have important health implications for developing interventions to address fatigue in cancer survivors.

  6. [Effect of the consumption of a food supplement on plasma zinc concentrations of free-living Chilean elderly adults].

    Ramos H, Rosa Isela; Atalah S, Eduardo; Urteaga R, Carmen; Castañeda L, Rutila; Orozco L, Maribel; Avila, Laura; Martínez, Homero

    2007-08-01

    Zinc intake is well below recommendation among Chilean free living elderly adults of low socioeconomic level. To assess the effect of the consumption of a food supplement on plasma zinc concentrations in elderly adults (EA). Ambulatory EA (> or = 70) with controlled type 2 diabetes mellitus or high blood pressure, ascribed to public family health centers were studied. They were separated in a control and intervention group, without blinding techniques. The intervention group consumed daily 50 g of a special nutritional supplement prepared as a soup or porridge, provided by the Government, for 3 months. The control group did not receive the supplement. A good compliance with the supplement was defined as a consumption of 7 portions per week. A fasting venous blood sample was obtained to determine plasma zinc at the beginning and end of the study. Forty three supplemented EA aged 76+/-5 years (21 women) and 31 non supplemented EA aged 78+/-5 years (20 women), completed 3 months of follow up. Mean compliance with the supplement was 40.5% (95% confidence intervals (CI) 40.3-40.6%). General characteristics of the study subjects upon recruitment were similar, except for the literacy that was higher in the intervention group. We fitted a multiple linear regression model which explained 39% of the variance, where the consumption of the nutritional supplement increased the concentration of plasmatic zinc by 4.14 microg/dL (95% CI 0.25-8.02) (pfood supplement significantly increased plasma zinc concentrations in Chilean elderly adults.

  7. Epidemiology of RHDV2 (Lagovirus europaeus/GI.2) in free-living wild European rabbits in Portugal.

    Rouco, C; Abrantes, J; Serronha, A; Lopes, A M; Maio, E; Magalhães, M J; Blanco, E; Bárcena, J; Esteves, P J; Santos, N; Alves, P C; Monterroso, P

    2018-04-01

    As the detection of the first outbreak of a novel aetiological agent of rabbit haemorrhagic disease commonly called RHDV2 or RHDVb (Lagovirus europaeus/GI.2, henceforth GI.2) in France in 2010, the virus rapidly spread throughout continental Europe and nearby islands such as Great Britain, Sardinia, Sicily, the Azores and the Canary Islands among others. The outbreaks of this new lagovirus cause important economic losses in rabbitries, and ecological disruptions by affecting the conservation of rabbit-sensitive top predators. We analysed 550 rabbit carcasses collected in the field between May 2013 and March 2016, to investigate the epidemiology of GI.2 in free-living populations and to perform a comparative analysis with the epidemiology of classical rabbit haemorrhagic disease virus forms (RHDV, henceforth GI.1) in Portugal. Rabbits were sexed, aged and liver and blood samples were collected for subsequent RHDV screening and serology. A total of 172 samples were PCR-positive to GI.2, whereas GI.1 strains were not detected in any of the samples. The outbreaks of GI.2 revealed a marked seasonality, with peaks during the breeding season (November-May). We also found that approximately, one-third of free-ranging European rabbits in Portugal have seroconverted to GI.2. We demonstrate that the GI.2 lagovirus is currently widespread in wild populations in Portugal and is affecting a high proportion of adults and juveniles. Therefore, ongoing monitoring and surveillance are required to assess the effects of GI.2 on wild rabbit populations, its evolution, and to guide management actions aimed at mitigating the impacts of rabbit declines in the ecosystem and in rural economies. © 2017 Blackwell Verlag GmbH.

  8. Validating accelerometry estimates of energy expenditure across behaviours using heart rate data in a free-living seabird.

    Hicks, Olivia; Burthe, Sarah; Daunt, Francis; Butler, Adam; Bishop, Charles; Green, Jonathan A

    2017-05-15

    of free-living diving birds. © 2017. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  9. A glucose model based on support vector regression for the prediction of hypoglycemic events under free-living conditions.

    Georga, Eleni I; Protopappas, Vasilios C; Ardigò, Diego; Polyzos, Demosthenes; Fotiadis, Dimitrios I

    2013-08-01

    The prevention of hypoglycemic events is of paramount importance in the daily management of insulin-treated diabetes. The use of short-term prediction algorithms of the subcutaneous (s.c.) glucose concentration may contribute significantly toward this direction. The literature suggests that, although the recent glucose profile is a prominent predictor of hypoglycemia, the overall patient's context greatly impacts its accurate estimation. The objective of this study is to evaluate the performance of a support vector for regression (SVR) s.c. glucose method on hypoglycemia prediction. We extend our SVR model to predict separately the nocturnal events during sleep and the non-nocturnal (i.e., diurnal) ones over 30-min and 60-min horizons using information on recent glucose profile, meals, insulin intake, and physical activities for a hypoglycemic threshold of 70 mg/dL. We also introduce herein additional variables accounting for recurrent nocturnal hypoglycemia due to antecedent hypoglycemia, exercise, and sleep. SVR predictions are compared with those from two other machine learning techniques. The method is assessed on a dataset of 15 patients with type 1 diabetes under free-living conditions. Nocturnal hypoglycemic events are predicted with 94% sensitivity for both horizons and with time lags of 5.43 min and 4.57 min, respectively. As concerns the diurnal events, when physical activities are not considered, the sensitivity is 92% and 96% for a 30-min and 60-min horizon, respectively, with both time lags being less than 5 min. However, when such information is introduced, the diurnal sensitivity decreases by 8% and 3%, respectively. Both nocturnal and diurnal predictions show a high (>90%) precision. Results suggest that hypoglycemia prediction using SVR can be accurate and performs better in most diurnal and nocturnal cases compared with other techniques. It is advised that the problem of hypoglycemia prediction should be handled differently for nocturnal

  10. Widespread exposure to lead affects the body condition of free-living whooper swans Cygnus cygnus wintering in Britain

    Newth, J.L.; Rees, E.C.; Cromie, R.L.; McDonald, R.A.; Bearhop, S.; Pain, D.J.; Norton, G.J.; Deacon, C.; Hilton, G.M.

    2016-01-01

    Lead poisoning, through the ingestion of spent lead gunshot, is an established cause of morbidity and mortality in waterbirds globally, but the thresholds at which blood levels begin to affect the physiology of birds in the wild are less well known. Here we determine the prevalence of lead exposure in whooper swans and, for the first time, identify the level of blood lead associated with initial reductions in body condition. Blood lead elevated above background levels (i.e. >20 μg dL"−"1) was found in 41.7% (125/300) of swans tested. Blood lead was significantly negatively associated with winter body condition when levels were ≥44 μg dL"−"1 (27/260 = 10%). Our findings indicating that sub-lethal impacts of lead on body condition occur at the lower end of previously established clinical thresholds and that a relatively high proportion of individuals in this population may be affected, reaffirm the importance of reducing contamination of the environment with lead shot. - Highlights: • Elevated blood lead levels of >20 μg dL"−"1 were found in 41.7% of whooper swans. • Blood lead levels of ≥44 μg dL"−"1 were negatively associated with body condition. • Clinical effects were at lower levels than previously described for Anseriformes. • Reduction of lead shot in the environment would reduce the risk of lead exposure. - Blood lead was significantly negatively associated with the body condition of free-living whooper swans in winter when levels were ≥44 μg dL"−"1 (27/260 = 10% of birds were above this threshold).

  11. Corticosterone stress response shows long-term repeatability and links to personality in free-living Nazca boobies.

    Grace, Jacquelyn K; Anderson, David J

    2014-11-01

    The concept of "coping styles", or consistently different responses to stressors, is of broad interest in behavioral ecology and biomedicine. Two critical predictions of this concept are individual consistency of neurophysiological and behavioral responses (relative to population variability) and a negative relationship between aggression/proactivity and hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis reactivity. Recent studies failed to provide strong support for these predictions, especially outside of strictly controlled conditions, and long-term measures to test the first prediction are rare. Here, we demonstrate individual repeatability across 2-3years of maximum circulating corticosterone concentration [CORT] and area under the [CORT] response curve (AUCI) during a standard capture-restraint test in wild, free-living adult Nazca boobies (Sula granti). We also show that the stress response predicts the personality traits aggression and anxiety in these birds (measured in the wild); however, the strength of these results was weak. Maximum [CORT] and AUCI showed higher repeatability between years than baseline [CORT]. After controlling breeding status, sex, mass, date sampled, and their interactions, baseline [CORT] was most closely related to personality traits, followed by AUCI, and then maximum [CORT]. The direction of these relationships depended on whether the testing context was social or non-social. [CORT] parameters had little to no relationship with cross-context plasticity in personality traits. Our results generally affirm two critical predictions of coping styles, but match the emerging trend that these relationships are weak in the wild, and may depend on testing context. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Appetite predicts mortality in free-living older adults in association with dietary diversity. A NAHSIT cohort study.

    Huang, Yi-Chen; Wahlqvist, Mark L; Lee, Meei-Shyuan

    2014-12-01

    This study aimed to assess the predictive ability of appetite for mortality among representative free-living Taiwanese older adults. A total of 1856 participants aged 65 years or over from the Elderly Nutrition and Health Survey during 1999-2000 completed an appetite question in a larger questionnaire. Personal information was obtained by face-to-face interview at baseline, together with a 24-hour dietary recall and simplified food frequency questionnaire which provided a dietary diversity score and food intake frequency. Survivorship was ascertained from the Death Registry until December 31, 2008. Participants with a poor appetite had lower dietary diversity scores (DDS) and intake frequencies of meat, fish and sea food, egg, vegetable and fruit intake, along with lower energy, protein, vitamin B-1, niacin, iron and phosphate intakes. Those who had fair and poor appetites had a higher risk of all-cause mortality compared to those with good appetite, with hazard ratios (HR) (95% confidence interval, CI) of 1.28 (1.03-1.58) and 2.27 (1.71-3.02), respectively. After adjustment for confounders, the HRs (95% CI) were 1.05 (0.83-1.33) and 1.50 (1.03-2.18), respectively. With further adjustment for DDS or general health these HRs became non-significant. The joint HR (95% CI) for "DDS ≤ 4 and poor appetite" was 1.77 (1.04-3.00) compared to "DDS > 4 and good appetite" as referent. Poor appetite is associated with lower food and nutrient intakes and an independent risk for mortality in older Taiwanese. In conclusion, appetite is separate, mediated by general health and modulated by dietary quality in its predictive capacity for mortality. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Temperature data from Norwegian and Russian waters of the northern Barents Sea collected by free-living ringed seals

    Lydersen, Christian; Anders Nøst, Ole; Kovacs, Kit M.; Fedak, Mike A.

    2004-05-01

    Free-living ringed seals ( N=11) equipped with satellite-relayed data loggers (SRDLs) with incorporated oceanographic-quality temperature sensors were used to collect data from a large sector of the northern Barents Sea during the autumn and early winter. A total of 2346 temperature profiles were collected over a 4-month period from Norwegian and Russian arctic waters in areas that were at times 90-100% ice-covered. Temperature distributions at different depths from northeastern parts of Svalbard, Norway show warm North Atlantic water (NAW) flowing along the continental slope and gradually cooling at all depths as it flows eastwards. The data suggest that most of the cooling takes place west of 30°E. Vertical temperature profiles from the area between Svalbard and Franz Josef Land, Russia show how the surface water cools during freeze-up and demonstrate a warm water flow, which is probably NAW, coming in from the north through a deep trench west of Franz Josef Land. Global oceanographic and climate models require improved oceanographic databases from crucial areas where important hydrological phenomena occur. Such areas in arctic waters are often inaccessible during winter and logistically difficult to reach even in summer. The present study demonstrates how large amounts of oceanographic information can be collected and retrieved in a cost-efficient manner using ice-associated marine mammals as carrier of oceanographic sampling equipment. In addition to the oceanographic value of the data collected by marine mammals in this manner, a vast amount of information regarding the habitat of these animals is concomitantly sampled.

  14. Phylogenomic analysis of Candidatus ‘Izimaplasma’ species: free-living representatives from a Tenericutes clade found in methane seeps

    Skennerton, Connor T.

    2016-04-08

    Tenericutes are a unique class of bacteria that lack a cell wall and are typically parasites or commensals of eukaryotic hosts. Environmental 16S rDNA surveys have identified a number of tenericute clades in diverse environments, introducing the possibility that these Tenericutes may represent non-host-associated, free-living microorganisms. Metagenomic sequencing of deep-sea methane seep sediments resulted in the assembly of two genomes from a Tenericutes-affiliated clade currently known as \\'NB1-n\\' (SILVA taxonomy) or \\'RF3\\' (Greengenes taxonomy). Metabolic reconstruction revealed that, like cultured members of the Mollicutes, these \\'NB1-n\\' representatives lack a tricarboxylic acid cycle and instead use anaerobic fermentation of simple sugars for substrate level phosphorylation. Notably, the genomes also contained a number of unique metabolic features including hydrogenases and a simplified electron transport chain containing an RNF complex, cytochrome bd oxidase and complex I. On the basis of the metabolic potential predicted from the annotated genomes, we devised an anaerobic enrichment media that stimulated the growth of these Tenericutes at 10 °C, resulting in a mixed culture where these organisms represented ∼60% of the total cells by targeted fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH). Visual identification by FISH confirmed these organisms were not directly associated with Eukaryotes and electron cryomicroscopy of cells in the enrichment culture confirmed an ultrastructure consistent with the defining phenotypic property of Tenericutes, with a single membrane and no cell wall. On the basis of their unique gene content, phylogenetic placement and ultrastructure, we propose these organisms represent a novel class within the Tenericutes, and suggest the names Candidatus \\'Izimaplasma sp. HR1\\' and Candidatus \\'Izimaplasma sp. HR2\\' for the two genome representatives.

  15. Patient-reported dietetic care post hospital for free-living patients: a Canadian Malnutrition Task Force Study.

    Keller, H; Payette, H; Laporte, M; Bernier, P; Allard, J; Duerksen, D; Gramlich, L; Jeejeebhoy, K

    2018-02-01

    Transitions out of hospital can influence recovery. Ideally, malnourished patients should be followed by someone with nutrition expertise, specifically a dietitian, post discharge from hospital. Predictors of dietetic care post discharge are currently unknown. The present study aimed to determine the patient factors independently associated with 30-days post hospital discharge dietetic care for free-living patients who transitioned to the community. Nine hundred and twenty-two medical or surgical adult patients were recruited in 16 acute care hospitals in eight Canadian provinces on admission. Eligible patients could speak English or French, provide their written consent, were anticipated to have a hospital stay of ≥2 days and were not considered palliative. Telephone interviews were completed with 747 (81%) participants using a standardised questionnaire to determine whether dietetic care occurred post discharge; 544 patients discharged to the community were included in the multivariate analyses, excluding those who were admitted to nursing homes or rehabilitation facilities. Covariates during and post hospitalisation were collected prospectively and used in logistic regression analyses to determine independent patient-level predictors. Dietetic care post discharge was reported by 61/544 (11%) of participants and was associated with severe malnutrition [Subjective Global Assessment category C: odd's ratio (OR) 2.43 (1.23-4.83)], weight loss post discharge [(OR 2.86 (1.45-5.62)], comorbidity [(OR 1.09 (1.02-1.17)] and a dietitian consultation on admission [(OR 3.41 (1.95-5.97)]. Dietetic care post discharge occurs in few patients, despite the known high prevalence of malnutrition on admission and discharge. Dietetic care in hospital was the most influential predictor of post-hospital care. © 2017 The British Dietetic Association Ltd.

  16. Evaluation of a digital method to assess evening meal intake in a free-living adult population

    Anne Dahl Lassen

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available Background: In recent years new applications of technologies, including digital images, to capture dietary behaviour in real time have been explored. Objectives: To validate a digital method for estimating evening meal intake in a free-living adult population, and to examine the feasibility of the method for recording evening meal intake over a prolonged period of time. Design: The digital method was compared against weighed records of 19 participants’ usual evening meals for five consecutive days. Two trained image analysts independently estimated the weight of individual foods within the meals into major food categories, and the nutrient content was calculated. A second study included interviews with 28 participants recording their evening meals on weekdays for three consecutive weeks to get their perspective on the feasibility of the method. Results: High correlation coefficients between the digital method and weighed records were found for all measured food categories and nutrients. Comparable means and acceptable limits of agreement (mean difference +/− 2 SD were found with regard to macronutrient distribution (e.g. fat content −5 to 6 E%, energy density (−75 to 91 kJ/100 g, and energy-adjusted foods (e.g. fruit and vegetable content −241 to 236 g/10 MJ. The majority of the participants expressed satisfaction with the method and were willing to record their evening meals for 1 month or more using the digital method. Conclusion: The digital method is valid and feasible for evening meal estimation in real-time where a prolonged recording period of participants’ meals is needed.

  17. Distribution and drivers of symbiotic and free-living diazotrophic cyanobacteria in the western tropical South Pacific

    Stenegren, Marcus; Caputo, Andrea; Berg, Carlo; Bonnet, Sophie; Foster, Rachel A.

    2018-03-01

    The abundance and distribution of cyanobacterial diazotrophs were quantified in two regions (Melanesian archipelago, MA; and subtropical gyre, SG) of the western tropical South Pacific using nifH quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) assays. UCYN-A1 and A2 host populations were quantified using 18S rRNA qPCR assays including one newly developed assay. All phylotypes were detected in the upper photic zone (0-50 m), with higher abundances in the MA region. Trichodesmium and UCYN-B dominated and ranged from 2.18 × 102 to 9.41 × 106 and 1.10 × 102 to 2.78 × 106 nifH copies L-1, respectively. Het-1 (symbiont of Rhizosolenia diatoms) was the next most abundant (1.40 × 101-1.74 × 105 nifH copies L-1) and co-occurred with het-2 and het-3. UCYN-A1 and A2 were the least abundant diazotrophs and were below detection (bd) in 63 and 79, respectively, of 120 samples. In addition, in up to 39 % of samples in which UCYN-A1 and A2 were detected, their respective hosts were bd. Pairwise comparisons of the nifH abundances and various environmental parameters supported two groups: a deep-dwelling group (45 m) comprised of UCYN-A1 and A2 and a surface group (0-15 m) comprised of Trichodesmium, het-1 and het-2. Temperature and photosynthetically active radiation were positively correlated with the surface group, while UCYN-A1 and A2 were positively correlated with depth, salinity, and oxygen. Similarly, in a meta-analysis of 11 external datasets, all diazotrophs, except UCYN-A were correlated with temperature. Combined, our results indicate that conditions favoring the UCYN-A symbiosis differ from those of diatom diazotroph associations and free-living cyanobacterial diazotrophs.

  18. Hydrostatic pressure and temperature affect the tolerance of the free-living marine nematode Halomonhystera disjuncta to acute copper exposure.

    Mevenkamp, Lisa; Brown, Alastair; Hauton, Chris; Kordas, Anna; Thatje, Sven; Vanreusel, Ann

    2017-11-01

    Potential deep-sea mineral extraction poses new challenges for ecotoxicological research since little is known about effects of abiotic conditions present in the deep sea on the toxicity of heavy metals. Due to the difficulty of collecting and maintaining deep-sea organisms alive, a first step would be to understand the effects of high hydrostatic pressure and low temperatures on heavy metal toxicity using shallow-water relatives of deep-sea species. Here, we present the results of acute copper toxicity tests on the free-living shallow-water marine nematode Halomonhystera disjuncta, which has close phylogenetic and ecological links to the bathyal species Halomonhystera hermesi. Copper toxicity was assessed using a semi-liquid gellan gum medium at two levels of hydrostatic pressure (0.1MPa and 10MPa) and temperature (10°C and 20°C) in a fully crossed design. Mortality of nematodes in each treatment was assessed at 4 time intervals (24 and 48h for all experiments and additionally 72 and 96h for experiments run at 10°C). LC 50 values ranged between 0.561 and 1.864mg Cu 2+ L -1 and showed a decreasing trend with incubation time. Exposure to high hydrostatic pressure significantly increased sensitivity of nematodes to copper, whereas lower temperature resulted in an apparently increased copper tolerance, possibly as a result of a slower metabolism under low temperatures. These results indicate that hydrostatic pressure and temperature significantly affect metal toxicity and therefore need to be considered in toxicity assessments for deep-sea species. Any application of pollution limits derived from studies of shallow-water species to the deep-sea mining context must be done cautiously, with consideration of the effects of both stressors. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Burkholderia bacteria infectiously induce the proto-farming symbiosis of Dictyostelium amoebae and food bacteria.

    DiSalvo, Susanne; Haselkorn, Tamara S; Bashir, Usman; Jimenez, Daniela; Brock, Debra A; Queller, David C; Strassmann, Joan E

    2015-09-08

    Symbiotic associations can allow an organism to acquire novel traits by accessing the genetic repertoire of its partner. In the Dictyostelium discoideum farming symbiosis, certain amoebas (termed "farmers") stably associate with bacterial partners. Farmers can suffer a reproductive cost but also gain beneficial capabilities, such as carriage of bacterial food (proto-farming) and defense against competitors. Farming status previously has been attributed to amoeba genotype, but the role of bacterial partners in its induction has not been examined. Here, we explore the role of bacterial associates in the initiation, maintenance, and phenotypic effects of the farming symbiosis. We demonstrate that two clades of farmer-associated Burkholderia isolates colonize D. discoideum nonfarmers and infectiously endow them with farmer-like characteristics, indicating that Burkholderia symbionts are a major driver of the farming phenomenon. Under food-rich conditions, Burkholderia-colonized amoebas produce fewer spores than uncolonized counterparts, with the severity of this reduction being dependent on the Burkholderia colonizer. However, the induction of food carriage by Burkholderia colonization may be considered a conditionally adaptive trait because it can confer an advantage to the amoeba host when grown in food-limiting conditions. We observed Burkholderia inside and outside colonized D. discoideum spores after fruiting body formation; this observation, together with the ability of Burkholderia to colonize new amoebas, suggests a mixed mode of symbiont transmission. These results change our understanding of the D. discoideum farming symbiosis by establishing that the bacterial partner, Burkholderia, is an important causative agent of the farming phenomenon.

  20. Contrasting genomic properties of free-living and particle-attached microbial assemblages within a coastal ecosystem

    Maria W Smith

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available The Columbia River (CR is a powerful economic and environmental driver in the US Pacific Northwest. Microbial communities in the water column were analyzed from four diverse habitats: 1 an estuarine turbidity maximum (ETM; 2 a chlorophyll maximum of the river plume; 3 an upwelling-associated hypoxic zone; and 4 the deep ocean bottom. Three size fractions, 0.1-0.8, 0.8-3 and 3-200 μm were collected for each habitat in August 2007, and used for DNA isolation and 454 sequencing, resulting in 12 metagenomes of >5 million reads (>1.6 Gbp. To characterize the dominant microorganisms and metabolisms contributing to coastal biogeochemistry, we used predicted peptide and rRNA data. The 3- and 0.8-μm metagenomes, representing particulate fractions, were taxonomically diverse across habitats. The 3-μm size fractions contained a high abundance of eukaryota with diatoms dominating the hypoxic water and plume, while cryptophytes were more abundant in the ETM. The 0.1-μm metagenomes represented mainly free-living bacteria and archaea. The most abundant archaeal hits were observed in the deep ocean and hypoxic water (19% of prokaryotic peptides in the 0.1-μm metagenomes, and were homologous to Nitrosopumilus maritimus (ammonia-oxidizing Thaumarchaeota. Bacteria dominated metagenomes of all samples. In the euphotic zone (estuary, plume and hypoxic ocean, the most abundant bacterial taxa (≥40 % of prokaryotic peptides represented aerobic photoheterotrophs. In contrast, the low-oxygen, deep water metagenome was enriched with sequences for strict and facultative anaerobes. Interestingly, many of the same anaerobic bacterial families were enriched in the 3-μm size fraction of the ETM (2-10X more abundant relative to the 0.1-μm metagenome, indicating possible formation of anoxic microniches within particles. Results from this study provide a metagenome perspective on ecosystem-scale metabolism in an upwelling-influenced river-dominated coastal margin.

  1. Differences in transcription between free-living and CO2-activated third-stage larvae of Haemonchus contortus

    Zhong Weiwei

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The disease caused by Haemonchus contortus, a blood-feeding nematode of small ruminants, is of major economic importance worldwide. The infective third-stage larva (L3 of this gastric nematode is enclosed in a cuticle (sheath and, once ingested with herbage by the host, undergoes an exsheathment process that marks the transition from the free-living (L3 to the parasitic (xL3 stage. This study explored changes in gene transcription associated with this transition and predicted, based on comparative analysis, functional roles for key transcripts in the metabolic pathways linked to larval development. Results Totals of 101,305 (L3 and 105,553 (xL3 expressed sequence tags (ESTs were determined using 454 sequencing technology, and then assembled and annotated; the most abundant transcripts encoded transthyretin-like, calcium-binding EF-hand, NAD(P-binding and nucleotide-binding proteins as well as homologues of Ancylostoma-secreted proteins (ASPs. Using an in silico-subtractive analysis, 560 and 685 sequences were shown to be uniquely represented in the L3 and xL3 stages, respectively; the transcripts encoded ribosomal proteins, collagens and elongation factors (in L3, and mainly peptidases and other enzymes of amino acid catabolism (in xL3. Caenorhabditis elegans orthologues of transcripts that were uniquely transcribed in each L3 and xL3 were predicted to interact with a total of 535 other genes, all of which were involved in embryonic development. Conclusion The present study indicated that some key transcriptional alterations taking place during the transition from the L3 to the xL3 stage of H. contortus involve genes predicted to be linked to the development of neuronal tissue (L3 and xL3, formation of the cuticle (L3 and digestion of host haemoglobin (xL3. Future efforts using next-generation sequencing and bioinformatic technologies should provide the efficiency and depth of coverage required for the determination of the

  2. The antibiotic resistome of free-living and particle-attached bacteria under a reservoir cyanobacterial bloom.

    Guo, Yunyan; Liu, Min; Liu, Lemian; Liu, Xuan; Chen, Huihuang; Yang, Jun

    2018-05-04

    In freshwater systems, both antibiotic resistance genes (ARGs) and cyanobacterial blooms attract global public health concern. Cyanobacterial blooms can greatly impact bacterial taxonomic communities, but very little is known about the influence of the blooms on antibiotic resistance functional community. In this study, the ARGs in both free-living (FL) and particle-attached (PA) bacteria under bloom and non-bloom conditions were simultaneously investigated in a subtropical reservoir using high-throughput approaches. In total, 145 ARGs and 9 mobile genetic elements (MGEs) were detected. The most diverse and dominant of which (68.93%) were multidrug resistance genes and efflux pump mechanism. The richness of ARGs in both FL and PA bacteria was significantly lower during the bloom period compared with non-bloom period. The abundance of ARGs in FL bacteria was significantly lower under bloom condition than in the non-bloom period, but the abundance of ARGs in PA bacteria stayed constant. More importantly, the resistant functional community in PA bacteria was more strongly influenced by the cyanobacterial bloom than in the FL bacteria, although >96% ARGs were shared in both FL and PA bacteria or both bloom and non-bloom periods. We also compared the community compositions between taxonomy and function, and found antibiotic resistant communities were highly variable and exhibited lower similarity between bloom and non-bloom periods than seen in the taxonomic composition, with an exception of FL bacteria. Altogether, cyanobacterial blooms appear to have stronger inhibitory effect on ARG abundance in FL bacteria, and stronger influence on antibiotic resistant community composition in PA bacteria. Our results further suggested that both neutral and selective processes interactively affected the ARG composition dynamics of the FL and PA bacteria. However, the antibiotic resistant community of FL bacteria exhibited a higher level of temporal stochasticity following the bloom

  3. Seasonal biotic and abiotic factors affecting hunting strategy in free-living Saharan sand vipers, Cerastes vipera.

    Horesh, Sefi J A; Sivan, Jaim; Rosenstrauch, Avi; Tesler, Itay; Degen, A Allan; Kam, Michael

    2017-02-01

    Sit-and-wait ambushing and active hunting are two strategies used by predators to capture prey. In snakes, hunting strategy is conserved phylogenetically; most species employ only one strategy. Active hunters encounter and capture more prey but invest more energy in hunting and have higher risks of being predated. This trade-off is important to small predators. The small Cerastes vipera employs both modes of hunting, which is unlike most viperids which use only sit-and wait ambushing. This species hibernates in October and emerges in April. Energy intake should be high prior to hibernation to overcome the non-feeding hibernation period and for reproduction on their emergence. We predicted that more individuals would hunt actively towards hibernation and an abiotic factor would trigger this response. Furthermore, since more energy is required for active hunting, we predicted that snakes in good body condition would use active hunting to a greater extent than snakes in poor body condition. To test our predictions, we tracked free-living snakes year round and determined their hunting strategy, estimated their body condition index (BCI), and calculated circannual parameters of day length as environmental cues known to affect animal behaviour. Two novel findings emerged in this study, namely, hunting strategy was affected significantly by 1) the circannual change in day length and 2) by BCI. The proportion of active hunters increased from 5% in April to over 30% in October and BCI of active foragers was higher than that of sit-and-wait foragers and, therefore, our predictions were supported. The entrainment between the proportion of active hunting and the abiotic factor is indicative of an adaptive function for choosing a hunting strategy. A trend was evident among life stages. When all life stages were present (September-October), the proportion of active foragers increased with age: 0.0% among neonates, 18.2% among juveniles and 31.4% among adults. We concluded that

  4. Comparability of activity monitors used in Asian and Western-country studies for assessing free-living sedentary behaviour.

    Satoshi Kurita

    Full Text Available This study aims to compare the outputs of the waist-worn Active style Pro HJA-350IT (ASP; used in studies with Asian populations, the waist-worn ActiGragh™GT3X+ using the normal filter (GT3X+ and the thigh-worn activPAL3 (AP in assessing adults' sedentary behaviour (total sedentary time, number of breaks under free-living conditions. Fifty healthy workers wore the three monitors simultaneously during their waking hours on two days, including a work day and a non-work day. Valid data were at least 10 hours of wearing time, and the differences between monitors on the sedentary outputs using the AP as criterion measurement were analyzed by ANOVA. The number of participants who had complete valid data for work day and non-work day was 47 and 44, respectively. Total sedentary time and breaks estimated by the AP were respectively 466.5 ± 146.8 min and 64.3 ± 24.9 times on the work day and 497.7 ± 138.3 min and 44.6 ± 15.4 times on the non-work day. In total sedentary time, the ASP estimated 29.7 min (95%CI = 7.9 to 51.5 significantly shorter than the AP on the work day but showed no significant difference against the AP on the non-work day. The GT3X+ estimated 80.1 min (54.6 to 105.6 and 52.3 (26.4 to 78.2 significantly longer than the AP on the work day and the non-work day, respectively. For the number of breaks from sedentary time, on both days, the ASP and the GT3X+ estimated significantly more than the AP: 14.1 to 15.8 times (6.3 to 22.5 for the ASP and 27.7 to 28.8 times (21.8 to 34.8 for the GT3X+. Compared to the AP as the criterion, the ASP can underestimate total sedentary time and the GT3X+ can overestimate it, and more so at the lower levels of sedentary time. For breaks from sedentary time, compared to the AP, both the GT3X+ the ASP can overestimate.

  5. Protozoan and helminth parasite fauna of free-living Croatian wild wolves (Canis lupus) analyzed by scat collection.

    Hermosilla, Carlos; Kleinertz, Sonja; Silva, Liliana M R; Hirzmann, Jörg; Huber, Djuro; Kusak, Josip; Taubert, Anja

    2017-01-15

    The European wolf (Canis lupus) is a large carnivore species present in limited areas of Europe with several small populations still being considered as endangered. Wolves can be infected by a wide range of protozoan and metazoan parasites with some of them affecting free-living wolf health condition. On this account, an epidemiological survey was conducted to analyze the actual parasite fauna in Croatian wild wolves. In total, 400 individual faecal samples were collected during field studies on wolf ecology in the years 2002-2011. Parasite stages were identified by the sodium acetate acetic acid formalin (SAF)-technique, carbolfuchsin-stained faecal smears and Giardia/Cryptosporidium coproantigen-ELISAs. A subset of taeniid eggs-positive wolf samples was additionally analyzed by PCR and subsequent sequencing to identify eggs on Echinococcus granulosus/E. multilocularis species level. In total 18 taxa of parasites were here detected. Sarcocystis spp. (19.1%) occurred most frequently in faecal samples, being followed by Capillaria spp. (16%), ancylostomatids (13.1%), Crenosoma vulpis (4.6%), Angiostrongylus vasorum (3.1%), Toxocara canis (2.8%), Hammondia/Neospora spp. (2.6 %), Cystoisospora ohioensis (2.1%), Giardia spp. (2.1%), Cystoisospora canis (1.8%), Cryptosporidium spp. (1.8%), Trichuris vulpis (1.5%), Taenia spp. (1.5%), Diphyllobothrium latum (1.5%), Strongyloides spp. (0.5%), Opisthorchis felineus (0.5%), Toxascaris leonina (0.3%), Mesocestoides litteratus (0.3%) and Alaria alata (0.3%). Some of the here identified parasites represent relevant pathogens for wolves, circulating between these carnivorous definitive hosts and a variety of mammalian intermediate hosts, e. g. Taenia spp. and Sarcocystis spp., while others are considered exclusively pathogenic for canids (e.g. A. vasorum, C. vulpis, T. vulpis, Cystoisospora spp.). This study provides first records on the occurrence of the two relevant anthropozoonotic parasites, Giardia spp. and Cryptosporidium

  6. Comparability of activity monitors used in Asian and Western-country studies for assessing free-living sedentary behaviour.

    Kurita, Satoshi; Yano, Shohei; Ishii, Kaori; Shibata, Ai; Sasai, Hiroyuki; Nakata, Yoshio; Fukushima, Noritoshi; Inoue, Shigeru; Tanaka, Shigeho; Sugiyama, Takemi; Owen, Neville; Oka, Koichiro

    2017-01-01

    This study aims to compare the outputs of the waist-worn Active style Pro HJA-350IT (ASP; used in studies with Asian populations), the waist-worn ActiGragh™GT3X+ using the normal filter (GT3X+) and the thigh-worn activPAL3 (AP) in assessing adults' sedentary behaviour (total sedentary time, number of breaks) under free-living conditions. Fifty healthy workers wore the three monitors simultaneously during their waking hours on two days, including a work day and a non-work day. Valid data were at least 10 hours of wearing time, and the differences between monitors on the sedentary outputs using the AP as criterion measurement were analyzed by ANOVA. The number of participants who had complete valid data for work day and non-work day was 47 and 44, respectively. Total sedentary time and breaks estimated by the AP were respectively 466.5 ± 146.8 min and 64.3 ± 24.9 times on the work day and 497.7 ± 138.3 min and 44.6 ± 15.4 times on the non-work day. In total sedentary time, the ASP estimated 29.7 min (95%CI = 7.9 to 51.5) significantly shorter than the AP on the work day but showed no significant difference against the AP on the non-work day. The GT3X+ estimated 80.1 min (54.6 to 105.6) and 52.3 (26.4 to 78.2) significantly longer than the AP on the work day and the non-work day, respectively. For the number of breaks from sedentary time, on both days, the ASP and the GT3X+ estimated significantly more than the AP: 14.1 to 15.8 times (6.3 to 22.5) for the ASP and 27.7 to 28.8 times (21.8 to 34.8) for the GT3X+. Compared to the AP as the criterion, the ASP can underestimate total sedentary time and the GT3X+ can overestimate it, and more so at the lower levels of sedentary time. For breaks from sedentary time, compared to the AP, both the GT3X+ the ASP can overestimate.

  7. Respiration and carbon dynamics of free-living and particle-attached bacteria in coastal waters of NE Pacific

    Guo, C.; Ke, Y.; Liu, H.

    2016-02-01

    Bacterial respiration (BR) rates are fundamental to understand the role of bacteria in carbon flow in aquatic ecosystem, and therefore it is critical to obtain reliable measurements. Prefiltration- (mostly 1-3μm) and dark-incubation- (mostly 24 h) based direct measurements of oxygen consumption have been the most commonly used method for BR. However, the prefiltration procedure and long incubation time may cause change of the bacterial abundance and structure, leading to inaccurate measurements. In this study, by measuring bacterial abundance, production and respiration of both particle-attached (PA) and free-living (FL) bacteria at two contrasting site in coastal NE Pacific from Nov 2014 to Mar 2015, we found that the 24 h growth rate of FL bacteria in the traditional BR incubations were significantly higher for 30% and 54% than those obtained for FL and total (FL+PA) bacteria in unfiltered incubations respectively, suggesting removal of protist grazers could cause a significant biomass accumulation during 24 h incubation than the in situ condition. This biomass overestimation resulted in 40% (±12%) overestimation of measured FL BR rates compared with the corrected in situ FL BR. Nevertheless, for the corrected in situ total BR, the rates were overestimated by traditional method in three measurements over nine for 6-46%, and were underestimated in the rest six measurements for 7-67%. Interestingly, those underestimations were attributed to the ignorance of PA bacteria due to prefiltration, which had larger cell size than the FL bacteria, accounted for 19% (±16%) in total bacterial abundance, and contributed to 50% (±19%) of total bacterial production. The average bacterial growth efficiency calculated by comparable 24 h integrated bacterial production and respiration was 0.42 (±0.24). Our results confirmed two major flaws in the current BR methodology, i.e., 1) it only measures the respiration of FL bacteria, and 2) the removal of grazers causing dramatic

  8. Gross anatomy of the gastrointestinal tract in reindeer, free-living and fed baled timothy silage in summer and winter

    Tove H. Aagnes

    1996-01-01

    Full Text Available The gross anatomy of the gastrointestinal (GI tract was investigated in reindeer calves (Rangtfer tarandus tarandus, free-living and fed two different qualities of timothy silage in September 1992 (summer and April 1993 (winter and related to the body condition. At both seasons nine male reindeer calves were taken from a natural pasture. Three animals were slaughtered directly (NP reindeer, three offered first cut (FC silage and three regrowth (RG silage ad lib., for 46 days. The FC silage contained 27% leaves and 57.8% dry matter (DM cell wall content (CWC and the RG silage 89 % leaves, and 38.7% DM CWC. The reticulo-rumen (RR digesta wet weight in the NP reindeer in summer was 6.7-7.7% of body mass (BM, compared to 25.1-32.8% and 9.6-12.9% of BM, respectively, in the animals fed FC and RG silage. In winter the RR digesta wet weight relative to BM in the NP reindeer and in the animals fed FC and RG silages were 9-5-11.5%, 25.4-33.3% and 10.4-18.3%, respectively. The distal fermentation chamber (DFC digesta wet weight in the NP animals in summer was 0.48-0.80% of BM, compared to 0.77-1.26% and 0.57¬0.65% of BM, respectively, in the animals fed FC and RG silage. In winter the DFC digesta wet weight relative to BM in the animals fed FC and RG silage did not differ significantly from the summer values (P>0.05, while in the NP reindeer it was 1.0-1.2% of BM which is significantly greater than in summer (P<0.05. The differences in relative weight of the fermentation chambers between the animals fed FC and RG silage both summer and winter were not reflected in total BM, which was similar in all groups fed silage. This is explained by a significantly lower carcass weight in the animals fed FC silage compared to the animals fed RG silage. Thus, the GI-tract gross anatomy in the silage fed animals seem to be highly affected by the plant structure and composition, and not by the season.

  9. A novel method to remotely measure food intake of free-living individuals in real time: the remote food photography method.

    Martin, Corby K; Han, Hongmei; Coulon, Sandra M; Allen, H Raymond; Champagne, Catherine M; Anton, Stephen D

    2009-02-01

    The aim of the present study was to report the first reliability and validity tests of the remote food photography method (RFPM), which consists of camera-enabled cell phones with data transfer capability. Participants take and transmit photographs of food selection and plate waste to researchers/clinicians for analysis. Following two pilot studies, adult participants (n 52; BMI 20-35 kg/m2 inclusive) were randomly assigned to the dine-in or take-out group. Energy intake (EI) was measured for 3 d. The dine-in group ate lunch and dinner in the laboratory. The take-out group ate lunch in the laboratory and dinner in free-living conditions (participants received a cooler with pre-weighed food that they returned the following morning). EI was measured with the RFPM and by directly weighing foods. The RFPM was tested in laboratory and free-living conditions. Reliability was tested over 3 d and validity was tested by comparing directly weighed EI to EI estimated with the RFPM using Bland-Altman analysis. The RFPM produced reliable EI estimates over 3 d in laboratory (r 0.62; P 0.93; P < 0.0001). In two laboratory-based validity tests, the RFPM underestimated EI by - 4.7 % (P = 0.046) and - 5.5 % (P = 0.076). In free-living conditions, the RFPM underestimated EI by - 6.6 % (P = 0.017). Bias did not differ by body weight or age. The RFPM is a promising new method for accurately measuring the EI of free-living individuals. Error associated with the method is small compared with self-report methods.

  10. The eMouveRecherche application competes with research devices to evaluate energy expenditure, physical activity and still time in free-living conditions.

    Guidoux, Romain; Duclos, Martine; Fleury, Gérard; Lacomme, Philippe; Lamaudière, Nicolas; Saboul, Damien; Ren, Libo; Rousset, Sylvie

    2017-05-01

    The proliferation of smartphones is creating new opportunities to monitor and interact with human subjects in free-living conditions since smartphones are familiar to large segments of the population and facilitate data collection, transmission and analysis. From accelerometry data collected by smartphones, the present work aims to estimate time spent in different activity categories and the energy expenditure in free-living conditions. Our research encompasses the definition of an energy-saving function (Pred EE ) considering four physical categories of activities (still, light, moderate and vigorous), their duration and metabolic cost (MET). To create an efficient discrimination function, the method consists of classifying accelerometry-transformed signals into categories and of associating each category with corresponding Metabolic Equivalent Tasks. The performance of the Pred EE function was compared with two previously published functions (f(η,d)aedes,f(η,d)nrjsi), and with two dedicated sensors (Armband® and Actiheart®) in free-living conditions over a 12-h monitoring period using 30 volunteers. Compared to the two previous functions, Pred EE was the only one able to provide estimations of time spent in each activity category. In relative value, all the activity categories were evaluated similarly to those given by Armband®. Compared to Actiheart®, the function underestimated still activities by 10.1% and overestimated light- and moderate-intensity activities by 7.9% and 4.2%, respectively. The total energy expenditure error produced by Pred EE compared to Armband® was lower than those given by the two previous functions (5.7% vs. 14.1% and 17.0%). Pred EE provides the user with an accurate physical activity feedback which should help self-monitoring in free-living conditions. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Relationships between Free-Living Protozoa, Cultivable Legionella spp., and Water Quality Characteristics in Three Drinking Water Supplies in the Caribbean▿†

    Valster, Rinske M.; Wullings, Bart A.; van den Berg, Riemsdijk; van der Kooij, Dick

    2011-01-01

    The study whose results are presented here aimed at identifying free-living protozoa (FLP) and conditions favoring the growth of these organisms and cultivable Legionella spp. in drinking water supplies in a tropical region. Treated and distributed water (±30°C) of the water supplies of three Caribbean islands were sampled and investigated with molecular techniques, based on the 18S rRNA gene. The protozoan host Hartmannella vermiformis and cultivable Legionella pneumophila were observed in a...

  12. Validation of Physical Activity Tracking via Android Smartphones Compared to ActiGraph Accelerometer: Laboratory-Based and Free-Living Validation Studies.

    Hekler, Eric B; Buman, Matthew P; Grieco, Lauren; Rosenberger, Mary; Winter, Sandra J; Haskell, William; King, Abby C

    2015-04-15

    There is increasing interest in using smartphones as stand-alone physical activity monitors via their built-in accelerometers, but there is presently limited data on the validity of this approach. The purpose of this work was to determine the validity and reliability of 3 Android smartphones for measuring physical activity among midlife and older adults. A laboratory (study 1) and a free-living (study 2) protocol were conducted. In study 1, individuals engaged in prescribed activities including sedentary (eg, sitting), light (sweeping), moderate (eg, walking 3 mph on a treadmill), and vigorous (eg, jogging 5 mph on a treadmill) activity over a 2-hour period wearing both an ActiGraph and 3 Android smartphones (ie, HTC MyTouch, Google Nexus One, and Motorola Cliq). In the free-living study, individuals engaged in usual daily activities over 7 days while wearing an Android smartphone (Google Nexus One) and an ActiGraph. Study 1 included 15 participants (age: mean 55.5, SD 6.6 years; women: 56%, 8/15). Correlations between the ActiGraph and the 3 phones were strong to very strong (ρ=.77-.82). Further, after excluding bicycling and standing, cut-point derived classifications of activities yielded a high percentage of activities classified correctly according to intensity level (eg, 78%-91% by phone) that were similar to the ActiGraph's percent correctly classified (ie, 91%). Study 2 included 23 participants (age: mean 57.0, SD 6.4 years; women: 74%, 17/23). Within the free-living context, results suggested a moderate correlation (ie, ρ=.59, PAndroid smartphone can provide comparable estimates of physical activity to an ActiGraph in both a laboratory-based and free-living context for estimating sedentary and MVPA and that different Android smartphones may reliably confer similar estimates.

  13. Late Holocene palaeohydrological changes in a Sphagnum peat bog from NW Romania based on testate amoebae

    Andrei-Cosmin Diaconu

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available This paper investigates the possibility of reconstructing the palaeohydrological changes in an active Sphagnum peat bog from north-western Romania using testate amoebae fauna and organic matter content determined by loss on ignition (LOI. In total 28 taxa of testate amoebae were identified of which 11 were frequent enough to present a remarkable ecological significance. Based on the relative abundance of these taxa nine zones were identified, crossing from very wet to dry climate conditions. The wet periods identified are characterized by taxa like Centropyxis cassis, Amphitrema flavum and Hyalosphenia papilio, while in the dry periods Difflugia pulex and Nebela militaris thrive. We showed that combining qualitative information regarding hydrological preferences with the quantitative percentage data from the fossil record it is possible to obtain information regarding major surface moisture changes from the peat bog surface. Furthermore we identified a link between distribution of testate amoebae assemblages, organic matter variation and minerogenic material.

  14. Free energy simulations with the AMOEBA polarizable force field and metadynamics on GPU platform.

    Peng, Xiangda; Zhang, Yuebin; Chu, Huiying; Li, Guohui

    2016-03-05

    The free energy calculation library PLUMED has been incorporated into the OpenMM simulation toolkit, with the purpose to perform enhanced sampling MD simulations using the AMOEBA polarizable force field on GPU platform. Two examples, (I) the free energy profile of water pair separation (II) alanine dipeptide dihedral angle free energy surface in explicit solvent, are provided here to demonstrate the accuracy and efficiency of our implementation. The converged free energy profiles could be obtained within an affordable MD simulation time when the AMOEBA polarizable force field is employed. Moreover, the free energy surfaces estimated using the AMOEBA polarizable force field are in agreement with those calculated from experimental data and ab initio methods. Hence, the implementation in this work is reliable and would be utilized to study more complicated biological phenomena in both an accurate and efficient way. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  15. [Nitrogen input altered testate amoebae community in peatland of Sanjiang Plain, Northeast China].

    Song, Li-hong; Yan, Xiu-min; Wang, Ke-hong; Zhu, Xiao-yan; Wu, Dong-hu

    2015-02-01

    In the present study, an in situ control experiment was carried out to explore the response of testate amoebae to exogenous nitrogen addition in peatland of Sanjiang Plain. The results showed that nitrogen addition increased the biomass of testate amoebae at lower levels (6 g N · m(-2)), while decreased it at higher levels (> 12 g N · m(-2)). At genus level, nitrogen addition significantly increased the biomass of Arcella and Phryganella, decreased the biomass of Euglypha. Only lower nitrogen addition significantly increased the biomass of Centropyxis. At species level, nitrogen addition significantly decreased the biomass of Euglypha rotunda, while the biomass of either Centropyxis cassis or Phryganella acropodia was increased by a lower nitrogen addition treatment. This study suggested that the response of peatland testate amoebae to nitrogen addition was species specific, which could potentially be used as an indicator for the environment of peatlands.

  16. Amoeba Management System Transformation in the Light of Organisational Change Literature

    Urban Wieslaw

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available The object of this study is the system of amoebas founded originally in Japanese Kyocera. The study aims to identify milestones of the transformation in a company organisational system to the Amoeba Management System (AMS. The study takes a conceptual research approach. It starts from the analysis of available sources on the AMS, identifies the most challenging points of this system, and afterwards, based on organisational change literature, formulates the main steps of transformation towards AMS. The following milestones of AMS implementation emerge from organisational change theories: (1 the preparation for AMS, (2 the change of organisational structure, (3 the design and introduction of a new accounting system, (4 the introduction of inner prices between amoebas, and (5 the transformation of the organisational culture. At the end of the study, the most important issues for future research are listed.

  17. [The role of the floodplain gradient in structuring of testate amoebae communities in the Ilych River].

    Mazeĭ, Iu A; Malysheva, E A; Lapteva, E M; Komarov, A A; Taskaeva, A A

    2012-01-01

    Forty-two testate amoebae taxa were identified in alluvial soils of floodplain islands in the Ilych River. Among the pedo- and eurybionts, there were aquatic rhizopods. Along the floodplain transect (willow --> meadow --> deciduous forest --> coniferous forest), the testate amoebae community changed directly. There are spatially homogeneous (low beta-diversity) testacean communities but species rich on the local level (high alpha-diversity) within forests. Within willows and meadows, communities are characterized by low alpha-diversity and high heterogeneity that leads to high gamma-diversity.

  18. Amoebae as potential environmental hosts for Mycobacterium ulcerans and other mycobacteria, but doubtful actors in Buruli ulcer epidemiology.

    Sophie Gryseels

    Full Text Available The reservoir and mode of transmission of Mycobacterium ulcerans, the causative agent of Buruli ulcer, remain unknown. Ecological, genetic and epidemiological information nonetheless suggests that M. ulcerans may reside in aquatic protozoa.We experimentally infected Acanthamoeba polyphaga with M. ulcerans and found that the bacilli were phagocytised, not digested and remained viable for the duration of the experiment. Furthermore, we collected 13 water, 90 biofilm and 45 detritus samples in both Buruli ulcer endemic and non-endemic communities in Ghana, from which we cultivated amoeboid protozoa and mycobacteria. M. ulcerans was not isolated, but other mycobacteria were as frequently isolated from intracellular as from extracellular sources, suggesting that they commonly infect amoebae in nature. We screened the samples as well as the amoeba cultures for the M. ulcerans markers IS2404, IS2606 and KR-B. IS2404 was detected in 2% of the environmental samples and in 4% of the amoeba cultures. The IS2404 positive amoeba cultures included up to 5 different protozoan species, and originated both from Buruli ulcer endemic and non-endemic communities.This is the first report of experimental infection of amoebae with M. ulcerans and of the detection of the marker IS2404 in amoeba cultures isolated from the environment. We conclude that amoeba are potential natural hosts for M. ulcerans, yet remain sceptical about their implication in the transmission of M. ulcerans to humans and their importance in the epidemiology of Buruli ulcer.

  19. Monitoring of Waterborne Parasites in Two Drinking Water Treatment Plants: A Study in Sarawak, Malaysia.

    Richard, Reena Leeba; Ithoi, Init; Abd Majid, Mohamad Azlan; Wan Sulaiman, Wan Yusoff; Tan, Tian Chye; Nissapatorn, Veeranoot; Lim, Yvonne Ai Lian

    2016-06-28

    The occurrence of waterborne parasites coupled with water parameters at various processing sites of two drinking water treatment plants (A and B) and seven distribution system (DS) sites in Sarawak, Malaysia were studied. Ten liters of water underwent immunomagnetic separation (IMS) technique to detect the presence of Giardia and Cryptosporidium (oo)cysts. The remaining supernatant was used to detect other parasites whilst 50 mL of water sample was each used in the detection of free-living amoebae and fecal coliforms. Sampled water was positive for Giardia (32.9%; 28/85), Cryptosporidium (18.8%; 16/85) followed by Spirometra ova-like (25.9%; 22/85), Blastocystis-like (25.9%; 22/85), nematode larvae-like (8.2%; 7/85) and Taenia ova-like (1.2%; 1/85). Meanwhile, 90.2% (55/61) samples were positive for Acanthamoeba and Naegleria via cultivation and of these, 11 isolates were confirmed as Acanthamoeba genotype T3 (5/7) and T4 (2/7) followed by Naegleria sp. (4/11), Naegleria italica (2/11), Naegleria australiensis (1/11), Naegleria angularis (1/11) and Vahlkampfia sp. (3/11). Cryptosporidium, Acanthamoeba and Naegleria were also detected in one of the seven tested DS sites. Only Giardia and Cryptosporidium showed significant correlations with fluoride and fecal coliforms. These results describe the occurrence of waterborne parasites that will assist key stakeholders in mitigating contamination at the specific sites.

  20. Seasonal changes in Sphagnum peatland testate amoeba communities along a hydrological gradient.

    Marcisz, Katarzyna; Lamentowicz, Lukasz; Słowińska, Sandra; Słowiński, Michał; Muszak, Witold; Lamentowicz, Mariusz

    2014-10-01

    Testate amoebae are an abundant and functionally important group of protists in peatlands, but little is known about the seasonal patterns of their communities. We investigated the relationships between testate amoeba diversity and community structure and water table depth and light conditions (shading vs. insolation) in a Sphagnum peatland in Northern Poland (Linje mire) in spring and summer 2010. We monitored the water table at five sites across the peatland and collected Sphagnum samples in lawn and hummock micro-sites around each piezometer, in spring (3 May) and mid-summer (6 August) 2010. Water table differed significantly between micro-sites and seasons (Kruskal-Wallis test, p=0.001). The community structure of testate amoebae differed significantly between spring and summer in both hummock and lawn micro-sites. We recorded a small, but significant drop in Shannon diversity, between spring and summer (1.76 vs. 1.72). Strongest correlations were found between testate amoeba communities and water table lowering and light conditions. The relative abundance of mixotrophic species Hyalosphenia papilio, Archerella flavum and of Euglypha ciliata was higher in the summer. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  1. Evaluating the use of testate amoebae for palaeohydrological reconstruction in permafrost peatlands

    Swindles, Graeme T.; Amesbury, Matthew J.; Turner, T. Edward

    2015-01-01

    The melting of high-latitude permafrost peatlands is a major concern due to a potential positive feedback on global climate change. We examine the ecology of testate amoebae in permafrost peatlands, based on sites in Sweden (similar to 200 km north of the Arctic Circle). Multivariate statistical ...

  2. Mimivirus: leading the way in the discovery of giant viruses of amoebae.

    Colson, Philippe; La Scola, Bernard; Levasseur, Anthony; Caetano-Anollés, Gustavo; Raoult, Didier

    2017-04-01

    The accidental discovery of the giant virus of amoeba - Acanthamoeba polyphaga mimivirus (APMV; more commonly known as mimivirus) - in 2003 changed the field of virology. Viruses were previously defined by their submicroscopic size, which probably prevented the search for giant viruses, which are visible by light microscopy. Extended studies of giant viruses of amoebae revealed that they have genetic, proteomic and structural complexities that were not thought to exist among viruses and that are comparable to those of bacteria, archaea and small eukaryotes. The giant virus particles contain mRNA and more than 100 proteins, they have gene repertoires that are broader than those of other viruses and, notably, some encode translation components. The infection cycles of giant viruses of amoebae involve virus entry by amoebal phagocytosis and replication in viral factories. In addition, mimiviruses are infected by virophages, defend against them through the mimivirus virophage resistance element (MIMIVIRE) system and have a unique mobilome. Overall, giant viruses of amoebae, including mimiviruses, marseilleviruses, pandoraviruses, pithoviruses, faustoviruses and molliviruses, challenge the definition and classification of viruses, and have increasingly been detected in humans.

  3. Quadrulella texcalense sp nov from a Mexican desert: An unexpected new environment for hyalospheniid testate amoebae

    Perez-Juarez, H.; Serrano-Vazquez, A.; Kosakyan, Anush; Mitchell, E.A.D.; Rivera Aguilar, V. M.; Lahr, D. J. G.; Hernandez Moreno, M. M.; Macías Cuellar, H.; Eguiarte, L. E.; Lara, E.

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 61, 17 July (2017), s. 253-264 ISSN 0932-4739 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : Adaptation * Biological soil crust desert * Protist * Tehuacain-Cuicatlain Biosphere Reserve * Testate amoebae Subject RIV: EG - Zoology OBOR OECD: Zoology Impact factor: 2.581, year: 2016

  4. Long-Term Hydrological Reconstruction From a Beaver Meadow Using Testate Amoebae

    Von Ness, K.; Loisel, J.; Karran, D. J.; Westbrook, C.; Kohlmeyer, C.

    2016-12-01

    Beaver ponds contribute up to 0.8 Tg/yr of atmospheric methane (CH4) globally (Whitfield et al., 2014) and were found to be the largest CH4 emitters among all the wetland types in boreal environments (Roulet et al., 1992). However, the sources and underlying mechanisms of carbon emission and sequestration in beaver ponds requires further elucidation. Here we present the historical development of a beaver meadow located in the Sibbald Research Wetland in the Rocky Mountains of Kananaskis Provincial Park, Alberta, Canada. We use a combination of testate amoebae, plant macrofossils, and other geochemical proxies to provide high-resolution reconstructions along three peat cores extracted in hydrologically distinct portions of the meadow. To our knowledge, this is the first attempt at reconstructing long-term hydrological conditions in these systems. Testate amoebae (Protozoa: Rhizopoda) are single-celled organisms that inhabit moist substrates and produce a decay-resistant test. As each taxon generally occupies a discrete ecological niche related to soil moisture and pH, testate amoebae are good indicators of past and ongoing hydrological change. Preliminary analysis of testate amoebae assemblages downcore suggests that this proxy is suitable to reconstruct hydrological changes in meadows, with wetter and drier communities being in good agreement with wetter and drier plant macrofossil assemblages. The nitrogen isotopic signature of peat samples (ongoing) will be used as a proxy for changes in nutrient input; it could become a proxy for past beaver activity.

  5. Seasonal abundances of naked amoebae in biofilms on shells of zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) with comparative data from rock scrapings.

    Bischoff, Paul J; Wetmore, Scott

    2009-01-01

    In North America, zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) are notoriously known as invasive species. The abundance of naked amoebae sampled from the shells of zebra mussels was compared with abundances from rock scrapings at approximately monthly intervals for 1 year. The sites were 2 km apart along the same shoreline. No significant difference in abundance of naked amoebae (F = 1.44; P amoebae in winter, followed by peaks in early spring. The percent encysted increased from a low of 1% in the summer to 80% in early winter.

  6. Development and validation of a new method to measure walking speed in free-living environments using the actibelt® platform.

    Michaela Schimpl

    Full Text Available Walking speed is a fundamental indicator for human well-being. In a clinical setting, walking speed is typically measured by means of walking tests using different protocols. However, walking speed obtained in this way is unlikely to be representative of the conditions in a free-living environment. Recently, mobile accelerometry has opened up the possibility to extract walking speed from long-time observations in free-living individuals, but the validity of these measurements needs to be determined. In this investigation, we have developed algorithms for walking speed prediction based on 3D accelerometry data (actibelt® and created a framework using a standardized data set with gold standard annotations to facilitate the validation and comparison of these algorithms. For this purpose 17 healthy subjects operated a newly developed mobile gold standard while walking/running on an indoor track. Subsequently, the validity of 12 candidate algorithms for walking speed prediction ranging from well-known simple approaches like combining step length with frequency to more sophisticated algorithms such as linear and non-linear models was assessed using statistical measures. As a result, a novel algorithm employing support vector regression was found to perform best with a concordance correlation coefficient of 0.93 (95%CI 0.92-0.94 and a coverage probability CP1 of 0.46 (95%CI 0.12-0.70 for a deviation of 0.1 m/s (CP2 0.78, CP3 0.94 when compared to the mobile gold standard while walking indoors. A smaller outdoor experiment confirmed those results with even better coverage probability. We conclude that walking speed thus obtained has the potential to help establish walking speed in free-living environments as a patient-oriented outcome measure.

  7. Snacks containing whey protein and polydextrose induce a sustained reduction in daily energy intake over 2 wk under free-living conditions.

    Astbury, Nerys M; Taylor, Moira A; French, Stephen J; Macdonald, Ian A

    2014-05-01

    The manipulation of the composition of foods consumed as between-meal snacks may aid daily energy restriction. We compared the effects of the consumption of 2 energy-matched snack bars on appetite, energy intake (EI), and metabolic and endocrine responses. In addition, we investigated whether the acute effects of the consumption of snacks were maintained under free-living conditions and whether the habitual daily consumption of the snack over 14 d influenced these effects. Ten lean men [mean ± SD age: 30.7 ± 9.7 y; body mass index (in kg/m(2)): 23.2 ± 2.8] consumed a whey protein and polydextrose (PPX) snack bar or an isoenergetic control snack bar as a midmorning, between-meal snack for 14 consecutive days in a double-blind, randomized, crossover design. The two 14-d intervention phases were separated by a 14-d washout period. On the first (day 1) and last (day 15) days of each intervention phase, appetite, food intake, and blood metabolite and endocrine responses were assessed under laboratory conditions. Free-living EI was recorded on days 4, 8, and 12 of interventions. Total daily EI was significantly lower when the PPX snack was consumed during experimental days (10,149 ± 831 compared with 11,931 ± 896 kJ; P snack was consumed during the free-living part of the intervention (7904 ± 610 compared with 9041 ± 928 kJ; P snack was associated with lower glucose and ghrelin and higher glucagon-like peptide 1 and peptide tyrosine-tyrosine responses. The manipulation of the composition of foods consumed as snacks is an effective way to limit subsequent EI. This trial was registered at clinicaltrials.gov as NCT01927926.

  8. A mathematical modelling framework for linked within-host and between-host dynamics for infections with free-living pathogens in the environment.

    Garira, Winston; Mathebula, Dephney; Netshikweta, Rendani

    2014-10-01

    In this study we develop a mathematical modelling framework for linking the within-host and between-host dynamics of infections with free-living pathogens in the environment. The resulting linked models are sometimes called immuno-epidemiological models. However, there is still no generalised framework for linking the within-host and between-host dynamics of infectious diseases. Furthermore, for infections with free-living pathogens in the environment, there is an additional stumbling block in that there is a gap in knowledge on how environmental factors (through water, air, soil, food, fomites, etc.) alter many aspects of such infections including susceptibility to infective dose, persistence of infection, pathogen shedding and severity of the disease. In this work, we link the two subsystems (within-host and between-host models) by identifying the within-host and between-host variables and parameters associated with the environmental dynamics of the pathogen and then design a feedback of the variables and parameters across the within-host and between-host models using human schistosomiasis as a case study. We study the mathematical properties of the linked model and show that the model is epidemiologically well-posed. Using results from the analysis of the endemic equilibrium expression, the disease reproductive number R0, and numerical simulations of the full model, we adequately account for the reciprocal influence of the linked within-host and between-host models. In particular, we illustrate that for human schistosomiasis, the outcome of infection at the individual level determines if, when and how much the individual host will further transmit the infectious agent into the environment, eventually affecting the spread of the infection in the host population. We expect the conceptual modelling framework developed here to be applicable to many infectious disease with free-living pathogens in the environment beyond the specific disease system of human

  9. Disclosure of the differences of Mesorhizobium loti under the free-living and symbiotic conditions by comparative proteome analysis without bacteroid isolation.

    Tatsukami, Yohei; Nambu, Mami; Morisaka, Hironobu; Kuroda, Kouichi; Ueda, Mitsuyoshi

    2013-07-31

    Rhizobia are symbiotic nitrogen-fixing soil bacteria that show a symbiotic relationship with their host legume. Rhizobia have 2 different physiological conditions: a free-living condition in soil, and a symbiotic nitrogen-fixing condition in the nodule. The lifestyle of rhizobia remains largely unknown, although genome and transcriptome analyses have been carried out. To clarify the lifestyle of bacteria, proteome analysis is necessary because the protein profile directly reflects in vivo reactions of the organisms. In proteome analysis, high separation performance is required to analyze complex biological samples. Therefore, we used a liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry system, equipped with a long monolithic silica capillary column, which is superior to conventional columns. In this study, we compared the protein profile of Mesorhizobium loti MAFF303099 under free-living condition to that of symbiotic conditions by using small amounts of crude extracts. We identified 1,533 and 847 proteins for M. loti under free-living and symbiotic conditions, respectively. Pathway analysis by Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) revealed that many of the enzymes involved in the central carbon metabolic pathway were commonly detected under both conditions. The proteins encoded in the symbiosis island, the transmissible chromosomal region that includes the genes that are highly upregulated under the symbiotic condition, were uniquely detected under the symbiotic condition. The features of the symbiotic condition that have been reported by transcriptome analysis were confirmed at the protein level by proteome analysis. In addition, the genes of the proteins involved in cell surface structure were repressed under the symbiotic nitrogen-fixing condition. Furthermore, farnesyl pyrophosphate (FPP) was found to be biosynthesized only in rhizobia under the symbiotic condition. The obtained protein profile appeared to reflect the difference in phenotypes under the

  10. Novel European free-living, non-diazotrophic Bradyrhizobium isolates from contrasting soils that lack nodulation and nitrogen fixation genes - a genome comparison

    Jones, Frances Patricia; Clark, Ian M.; King, Robert; Shaw, Liz J.; Woodward, Martin J.; Hirsch, Penny R.

    2016-05-01

    The slow-growing genus Bradyrhizobium is biologically important in soils, with different representatives found to perform a range of biochemical functions including photosynthesis, induction of root nodules and symbiotic nitrogen fixation and denitrification. Consequently, the role of the genus in soil ecology and biogeochemical transformations is of agricultural and environmental significance. Some isolates of Bradyrhizobium have been shown to be non-symbiotic and do not possess the ability to form nodules. Here we present the genome and gene annotations of two such free-living Bradyrhizobium isolates, named G22 and BF49, from soils with differing long-term management regimes (grassland and bare fallow respectively) in addition to carbon metabolism analysis. These Bradyrhizobium isolates are the first to be isolated and sequenced from European soil and are the first free-living Bradyrhizobium isolates, lacking both nodulation and nitrogen fixation genes, to have their genomes sequenced and assembled from cultured samples. The G22 and BF49 genomes are distinctly different with respect to size and number of genes; the grassland isolate also contains a plasmid. There are also a number of functional differences between these isolates and other published genomes, suggesting that this ubiquitous genus is extremely heterogeneous and has roles within the community not including symbiotic nitrogen fixation.

  11. A metabolomics-driven approach to predict cocoa product consumption by designing a multimetabolite biomarker model in free-living subjects from the PREDIMED study.

    Garcia-Aloy, Mar; Llorach, Rafael; Urpi-Sarda, Mireia; Jáuregui, Olga; Corella, Dolores; Ruiz-Canela, Miguel; Salas-Salvadó, Jordi; Fitó, Montserrat; Ros, Emilio; Estruch, Ramon; Andres-Lacueva, Cristina

    2015-02-01

    The aim of the current study was to apply an untargeted metabolomics strategy to characterize a model of cocoa intake biomarkers in a free-living population. An untargeted HPLC-q-ToF-MS based metabolomics approach was applied to human urine from 32 consumers of cocoa or derived products (CC) and 32 matched control subjects with no consumption of cocoa products (NC). The multivariate statistical analysis (OSC-PLS-DA) showed clear differences between CC and NC groups. The discriminant biomarkers identified were mainly related to the metabolic pathways of theobromine and polyphenols, as well as to cocoa processing. Consumption of cocoa products was also associated with reduced urinary excretions of methylglutarylcarnitine, which could be related to effects of cocoa exposure on insulin resistance. To improve the prediction of cocoa consumption, a combined urinary metabolite model was constructed. ROC curves were performed to evaluate the model and individual metabolites. The AUC values (95% CI) for the model were 95.7% (89.8-100%) and 92.6% (81.9-100%) in training and validation sets, respectively, whereas the AUCs for individual metabolites were cocoa consumption in free-living subjects reveals that combining different metabolites as biomarker models improves prediction of dietary exposure to cocoa. © 2014 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  12. Effect of beetroot juice on lowering blood pressure in free-living, disease-free adults: a randomized, placebo-controlled trial

    Coles Leah T

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The consumption of beetroot juice on a low nitrate diet may lower blood pressure (BP and therefore reduce the risk of cardiovascular events. However, it is unknown if its inclusion as part of a normal diet has a similar effect on BP. The aim of the study was to conduct a randomized controlled trial with free-living adults to investigate if consuming beetroot juice in addition to a normal diet produces a measureable reduction in BP. Method Fifteen women and fifteen men participated in a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled, crossover study. Volunteers were randomized to receive 500 g of beetroot and apple juice (BJ or a placebo juice (PL. Volunteers had BP measured at baseline and at least hourly for 24-h following juice consumption using an ambulatory blood pressure monitor (ABPM. Volunteers remained at the clinic for 1-h before resuming normal non-strenuous daily activities. The identical procedure was repeated 2-wk later with the drink (BJ or PL not consumed on the first visit. Results Overall, there was a trend (P=0.064 to lower systolic blood pressure (SBP at 6-h after drinking BJ relative to PL. Analysis in men only (n=13 after adjustment for baseline differences demonstrated a significant (P Conclusions Beetroot juice will lower BP in men when consumed as part of a normal diet in free-living healthy adults. Trial registration anzctr.org.au ACTRN12612000445875

  13. The effects of Brassica green manures on plant parasitic and free living nematodes used in combination with reduced rates of synthetic nematicides.

    Riga, Ekaterini

    2011-06-01

    Brassica plants once incorporated into soil as green manures have recently been shown to have biofumigant properties and have the potential of controlling plant-parasitic nematodes. In Washington State, plant-parasitic nematodes are successfully managed with synthetic nematicides. However, some of the synthetic nematicides became unavailable recently or their supply is limited leaving growers with few choices to control plant-parasitic nematodes. The objective of this project was to evaluate the effects of Brassica green manures on their own and in combination with reduced rates of synthetic nematicides on plant-parasitic nematodes and free living nematodes. In a greenhouse experiment and field trials in three seasons, Brassica green manures in combination with half the recommended rate of 1,3-dichloropropene (1,3-D, Telone) reduced root knot nematode, Meloidogyne chitwoodi to below detection levels, and reduced lesion nematodes, Pratylenchus penetrans and stubby root nematodes, Paratrichodorus allius, to below economic thresholds. The combination treatments did not affect the beneficial free-living nematode populations and the non-pathogenic Pseudomonas. The total cost of growing and soil-incorporating Brassica crops as green manures in combination with reduced rates of 1,3-D was approximately 35% lower than the present commercial costs for application for the full rate of this fumigant. Integrating conventional management practices with novel techniques fosters sustainability of production systems and can increase economic benefit to producers while reducing chemical input.

  14. The effects of free-living interval-walking training on glycemic control, body composition, and physical fitness in type 2 diabetic patients: a randomized, controlled trial.

    Karstoft, Kristian; Winding, Kamilla; Knudsen, Sine H; Nielsen, Jens S; Thomsen, Carsten; Pedersen, Bente K; Solomon, Thomas P J

    2013-02-01

    To evaluate the feasibility of free-living walking training in type 2 diabetic patients and to investigate the effects of interval-walking training versus continuous-walking training upon physical fitness, body composition, and glycemic control. Subjects with type 2 diabetes were randomized to a control (n = 8), continuous-walking (n = 12), or interval-walking group (n = 12). Training groups were prescribed five sessions per week (60 min/session) and were controlled with an accelerometer and a heart-rate monitor. Continuous walkers performed all training at moderate intensity, whereas interval walkers alternated 3-min repetitions at low and high intensity. Before and after the 4-month intervention, the following variables were measured: VO(2)max, body composition, and glycemic control (fasting glucose, HbA(1c), oral glucose tolerance test, and continuous glucose monitoring [CGM]). Training adherence was high (89 ± 4%), and training energy expenditure and mean intensity were comparable. VO(2)max increased 16.1 ± 3.7% in the interval-walking group (P Body mass and adiposity (fat mass and visceral fat) decreased in the interval-walking group only (P interval-walking group. The continuous walkers showed no changes in glycemic control. Free-living walking training is feasible in type 2 diabetic patients. Continuous walking offsets the deterioration in glycemia seen in the control group, and interval walking is superior to energy expenditure-matched continuous walking for improving physical fitness, body composition, and glycemic control.

  15. Motor Skills and Free-Living Physical Activity Showed No Association Among Preschoolers in 2012 U.S. National Youth Fitness Survey.

    Loprinzi, Paul D; Frith, Emily

    2017-04-01

    Albeit limited, some emerging work, using convenience-based samples, has demonstrated that greater motor skill development is associated with higher physical activity among preschool-aged children. The purpose of this study was to evaluate this topic using data from the 2012 National Youth Fitness Survey that included 329 preschool-aged children (3-5 years). Parents proxy-reported their child's physical activity, with motor skill level assessed from the Test of Gross Motor Development-Second Edition (TGMD2). Motor skill levels (Gross Motor Quotient, locomotor or object control) were not associated with preschool free-living physical activity in any analytic model. Thus, in this large sample of preschoolers, contrary to research with older children, motor skill level was not associated with physical activity. Findings are discussed in terms of study limitations of (a) a reliance on parent report of children's physical activity levels and (b) the possibility that physical activity data within the national survey were too limited in range to show possible associations to motor skill development with higher levels of free-living physical activity in preschoolers.

  16. Evidence of test detachment in Astrorhiza limicola and two consequential synonyms: Amoeba gigantea and Megamoebomyxa argillobia (Foraminiferida)

    Cedhagen, Tomas; Tendal, Ole S.

    1989-01-01

    Laboratory observations and experiments demonstrate that the naked rhizopods Amoeba gigantea SANDAHL, 1857 and Megamoebomyxa argillo~ia NYHOLM, 1950, and the foraminifers Astrorhiza arenifera STSCHEDRlNA, 1946, A. sabulifera STSCHEDRINA, 1946 and A. arctlca STSCHEDRINA, 1958 are synonyms of Astro......Laboratory observations and experiments demonstrate that the naked rhizopods Amoeba gigantea SANDAHL, 1857 and Megamoebomyxa argillo~ia NYHOLM, 1950, and the foraminifers Astrorhiza arenifera STSCHEDRlNA, 1946, A. sabulifera STSCHEDRINA, 1946 and A. arctlca STSCHEDRINA, 1958 are synonyms...

  17. Platyamoeba pseudovannellida n. sp., a naked amoeba with wide salt tolerance isolated from the Salton Sea, California.

    Hauer, G; Rogerson, A; Anderson, O R

    2001-01-01

    A new species of naked amoeba, Platyamoeba pseudovannellida n.sp., is described on the basis of light microscopic and fine structural features. The amoeba was isolated from the Salton Sea, California, from water at a salinity of ca. 44%. Locomotive amoebae occasionally had a spatulate outline and floating cells had radiating pseudopodia, sometimes with pointed tips. Both these features are reminiscent of the genus Vannella. However, the surface coat (glycocalyx) as revealed by TEM indicates that this is a species of Platyamoeba. Although salinity was not used as a diagnostic feature, this species was found to have remarkable tolerance to fluctuating salinity levels, even when changes were rapid. Amoebae survived over the range 0 per thousand to 150 per thousand salt and grew within the range 0 per thousand to 138 per thousand salt. The generation time of cells averaged 29 h and was not markedly affected by salt concentration. This is longer than expected for an amoeba of this size and suggests a high energetic cost of coping with salinity changes. The morphology of cells changed with increasing salinity: at 0 per thousand cells were flattened and active and at the other extreme (138 per thousand) amoebae were wrinkled and domed and cell movement was very slow. At the ultrastructural level, the cytoplasm of cells grown at high salinity (98 per thousand was considerably denser than that of cells reared at 0 per thousand.

  18. Benefits of Substituting Sitting with Standing and Walking in Free-Living Conditions for Cardiometabolic Risk Markers, Cognition and Mood in Overweight Adults

    Bernard M. F. M. Duvivier

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Background: We investigated whether substituting sitting with standing and self-perceived light walking in free-living conditions would improve cardiometabolic risk factors, mood, and cognition in overweight/obese adults.Methods: In a randomized, cross-over study, 24 (m/f: 13/11 sedentary overweight/obese participants (64 ± 7 years, BMI 29 ± 2 kg/m2 followed two activity regimens of each 4 days in free-living conditions: “Sit”: sitting 13.5 h/day, standing 1.4 h/day, self-perceived light-intensity walking 0.7 h/day; for “SitLess” these activities lasted 7.6, 4.0, and 4.3 h/day, respectively. Meals were standardized and physical activity was assessed by accelerometry (activPAL. Insulin sensitivity (expressed as Matsuda-index based on an oral glucose tolerance test, circulating lipids, blood pressure, mood (pleasantness and arousal, and cognition were assessed on the morning after the activity regimens. Quality of life and sleep were assessed on the last day of the activity regimens.Results: We observed that AUC (0–190 min for insulin decreased by 20% after SitLess vs. Sit [10,125 (656 vs. 12,633 (818; p = 0.006]. Insulin sensitivity improved by 16% after SitLess vs. Sit [Matsuda-index, mean (SEM: 6.45 (0.25 vs. 5.58 (0.25 respectively; p = 0.007]. Fasting triglycerides, non-HDL-cholesterol, and apolipoprotein B decreased by 32, 7, and 4% respectively, whereas HDL-cholesterol increased by 7% after SitLess vs. Sit (all p < 0.01. Diastolic blood pressure was lower after SitLess vs. Sit (p < 0.05. Pleasantness (as one marker of mood status after the oral glucose tolerance test was higher after SitLess vs. Sit (p < 0.05. There was no significant difference between regimens for cognition, quality of life and sleep.Conclusions: Reducing sitting time in free-living conditions markedly improved insulin sensitivity, circulating lipids, and diastolic blood pressure. Substituting sitting with standing and self-perceived light walking is an

  19. Engineering an artificial amoeba propelled by nanoparticle-triggered actin polymerization

    Yi Jinsoo; Schmidt, Jacob; Chien Aichi; Montemagno, Carlo D [Department of Bioengineering, University of California Los Angeles, 420 Westwood Plaza, 7523 Boelter Hall, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1600 (United States)], E-mail: montemcd@ucmail.uc.edu

    2009-02-25

    We have engineered an amoeba system combining nanofabricated inorganic materials with biological components, capable of propelling itself via actin polymerization. The nanofabricated materials have a mechanism similar to the locomotion of the Listeria monocytogenes, food poisoning bacteria. The propulsive force generation utilizes nanoparticles made from nickel and gold functionalized with the Listeria monocytogenes transmembrane protein, ActA. These Listeria-mimic nanoparticles were in concert with actin, actin binding proteins, ATP (adenosine triphosphate) and encapsulated within a lipid vesicle. This system is an artificial cell, such as a vesicle, where artificial nanobacteria and actin polymerization machinery are used in driving force generators inside the cell. The assembled structure was observed to crawl on a glass surface analogously to an amoeba, with the speed of the movement dependent on the amount of actin monomers and ATP present.

  20. Ecology of Testate Amoebae in the Komořany Ponds in the Vltava Basin

    Burdíková, Zuzana; Čapek, Martin; Švindrych, Zdeněk; Gryndler, M.; Kubínová, Lucie; Holcová, K.

    2012-01-01

    Roč. 64, č. 1 (2012), s. 117-130 ISSN 0095-3628 R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) LC06063; GA ČR(CZ) GAP108/11/0794 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50110509 Keywords : ecology * freshwater ecosystem * testate amoebae * seasonal variability Subject RIV: CF - Physical ; Theoretical Chemistry Impact factor: 3.277, year: 2012

  1. Interactions Between Testate Amoebae and Saprotrophic Microfungi in a Scots Pine Litter Microcosm

    Vohník, Martin; Burdíková, Zuzana; Vyhnal, Aleš; Koukol, O.

    2011-01-01

    Roč. 61, č. 3 (2011), s. 660-668 ISSN 0095-3628 R&D Projects: GA ČR GP206/09/P340; GA ČR(CZ) GD204/09/H084 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50110509; CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : testate amoebae * saprotrophic fungi * litter Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 2.912, year: 2011

  2. Larrea tridentata: A novel source for anti-parasitic agents active against Entamoeba histolytica, Giardia lamblia and Naegleria fowleri.

    Bharat Bashyal

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Protozoan parasites infect and kill millions of people worldwide every year, particularly in developing countries where access to clean fresh water is limited. Among the most common are intestinal parasites, including Giardia lamblia and Entamoeba histolytica. These parasites wreak havoc on the epithelium lining the small intestines (G. lamblia and colon (E. histolytica causing giardiasis and amebiasis, respectively. In addition, there are less common but far more deadly pathogens such as Naegleria fowleri that thrive in warm waters and infect the central nervous systems of their victims via the nasal passages. Despite their prevalence and associated high mortality rates, there remains an unmet need to identify more effective therapeutics for people infected with these opportunistic parasites. To address this unmet need, we have surveyed plants and traditional herbal medicines known throughout the world to identify novel antiparasitic agents with activity against G. lamblia, E. histolytica, and N. fowleri. Herein, we report Larrea tridentata, known as creosote bush, as a novel source for secondary metabolites that display antiparasitic activity against all three pathogens. This report also characterizes the lignan compound classes, nordihydroguairetic acid and demethoxyisoguaiacin, as novel antiparasitic lead agents to further develop more effective drug therapy options for millions of people worldwide.

  3. Larrea tridentata: A novel source for anti-parasitic agents active against Entamoeba histolytica, Giardia lamblia and Naegleria fowleri.

    Bashyal, Bharat; Li, Linfeng; Bains, Trpta; Debnath, Anjan; LaBarbera, Daniel V

    2017-08-01

    Protozoan parasites infect and kill millions of people worldwide every year, particularly in developing countries where access to clean fresh water is limited. Among the most common are intestinal parasites, including Giardia lamblia and Entamoeba histolytica. These parasites wreak havoc on the epithelium lining the small intestines (G. lamblia) and colon (E. histolytica) causing giardiasis and amebiasis, respectively. In addition, there are less common but far more deadly pathogens such as Naegleria fowleri that thrive in warm waters and infect the central nervous systems of their victims via the nasal passages. Despite their prevalence and associated high mortality rates, there remains an unmet need to identify more effective therapeutics for people infected with these opportunistic parasites. To address this unmet need, we have surveyed plants and traditional herbal medicines known throughout the world to identify novel antiparasitic agents with activity against G. lamblia, E. histolytica, and N. fowleri. Herein, we report Larrea tridentata, known as creosote bush, as a novel source for secondary metabolites that display antiparasitic activity against all three pathogens. This report also characterizes the lignan compound classes, nordihydroguairetic acid and demethoxyisoguaiacin, as novel antiparasitic lead agents to further develop more effective drug therapy options for millions of people worldwide.

  4. Isolation of Salmonella enterica subsp. enterica (O:4,5:i and Salmonella enterica subsp. Typhimurium from free-living domestic pigeons (Columba livia

    R.C. Rocha-e-Silva

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available The present study reports the isolation of Salmonella enterica in organs of free-living domestic pigeons. In the clinic examination, the presence of feces in the peri-cloacal and abdominal regions were observed, as well as symptoms such as cachexy, incoordination and opisthotonos. Before any therapeutic protocol was applied the bird died and a necropsy was then performed for the removal of spleen, liver, kidney and intestine for bacteriological examination and antibiotic sensitivity test. Salmonella enterica subsp.enterica (O:4,5:i- and Salmonella enterica subsp. enterica serovar Typhimurium were isolated from the liver and intestine and the sensitivity test demonstrated that these strains are sensitive to several antibiotics.

  5. Genome sequence of the free-living aerobic spirochete Turneriella parva type strain (HT), and emendation of the species Turneriella parva

    Stackebrandt, Erko [DSMZ - German Collection of Microorganisms and Cell Cultures GmbH, Braunschweig, Germany; Chertkov, Olga [Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL); Lapidus, Alla L. [U.S. Department of Energy, Joint Genome Institute; Nolan, Matt [U.S. Department of Energy, Joint Genome Institute; Lucas, Susan [U.S. Department of Energy, Joint Genome Institute; Hammon, Nancy [U.S. Department of Energy, Joint Genome Institute; Deshpande, Shweta [U.S. Department of Energy, Joint Genome Institute; Cheng, Jan-Fang [U.S. Department of Energy, Joint Genome Institute; Tapia, Roxanne [Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL); Goodwin, Lynne A. [Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL); Pitluck, Sam [U.S. Department of Energy, Joint Genome Institute; Liolios, Konstantinos [U.S. Department of Energy, Joint Genome Institute; Pagani, Ioanna [U.S. Department of Energy, Joint Genome Institute; Ivanova, N [U.S. Department of Energy, Joint Genome Institute; Mavromatis, K [U.S. Department of Energy, Joint Genome Institute; Mikhailova, Natalia [U.S. Department of Energy, Joint Genome Institute; Huntemann, Marcel [U.S. Department of Energy, Joint Genome Institute; Pati, Amrita [U.S. Department of Energy, Joint Genome Institute; Chen, Amy [U.S. Department of Energy, Joint Genome Institute; Palaniappan, Krishna [U.S. Department of Energy, Joint Genome Institute; Land, Miriam L [ORNL; Pan, Chongle [ORNL; Rohde, Manfred [HZI - Helmholtz Centre for Infection Research, Braunschweig, Germany; Gronow, Sabine [DSMZ - German Collection of Microorganisms and Cell Cultures GmbH, Braunschweig, Germany; Goker, Markus [DSMZ - German Collection of Microorganisms and Cell Cultures GmbH, Braunschweig, Germany; Detter, J. Chris [U.S. Department of Energy, Joint Genome Institute; Bristow, James [U.S. Department of Energy, Joint Genome Institute; Eisen, Jonathan [U.S. Department of Energy, Joint Genome Institute; Markowitz, Victor [U.S. Department of Energy, Joint Genome Institute; Hugenholtz, Philip [U.S. Department of Energy, Joint Genome Institute; Woyke, Tanja [U.S. Department of Energy, Joint Genome Institute; Kyrpides, Nikos C [U.S. Department of Energy, Joint Genome Institute; Klenk, Hans-Peter [DSMZ - German Collection of Microorganisms and Cell Cultures GmbH, Braunschweig, Germany

    2013-01-01

    Turneriella parva Levett et al. 2005 is the only species of the genus Turneriella which was es- tablished as a result of the reclassification of Leptospira parva Hovind-Hougen et al. 1982. Together with Leptonema and Leptospira, Turneriella constitutes the family Leptospiraceae, within the order Spirochaetales. Here we describe the features of this free-living aerobic spi- rochete together with the complete genome sequence and annotation. This is the first com- plete genome sequence of a member of the genus Turneriella and the 13th member of the family Leptospiraceae for which a complete or draft genome sequence is now available. The 4,409,302 bp long genome with its 4,169 protein-coding and 45 RNA genes is part of the Genomic Encyclopedia of Bacteria and Archaea project.

  6. DETECTION OF Leptospira spp. AND Brucella abortus ANTIBODIES IN FREE-LIVING JAGUARS (Panthera onca IN TWO PROTECTED AREAS OF NORTHERN PANTANAL, BRAZIL

    Selma Samiko Miyazaki ONUMA

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available This study aimed to assess the exposure of free-living jaguars (Panthera onca to Leptospira spp. and Brucella abortus in two conservation units in the Pantanal of Mato Grosso, Brazil. The presence of antibodies in blood samples of eleven jaguars was investigated using autochthonous antigens isolated in Brazil added to reference antigen collection applied to diagnosis of leptospirosis by Microscopic Agglutination Test (MAT. The Rose Bengal test was applied for B. abortus antibodies. Two (18.2% jaguars were seroreactive for the Leptospira spp. antigen and the serovar considered as most infective in both animals was a Brazilian isolate of serovar Canicola (L01. All jaguars were seronegative for B. abortus. These data indicate that the inclusion of autochthonous antigens in serological studies can significantly increase the number of reactive animals, as well as modify the epidemiological profile of Leptospira spp. infection.

  7. Project TwEATs: a feasibility study testing the use of automated text messaging to monitor appetite ratings in a free-living population

    Schembre, Susan M.; Yuen, Jessica

    2011-01-01

    There are no standardized methods for monitoring appetite in free-living populations. Fifteen participants tested a computer-automated text-messaging system designed to track hunger ratings over seven days. Participants were sent text-messages (SMS) hourly and instructed to reply during waking hours with their current hunger rating. Of 168 SMS, 0.6-7.1% were undelivered, varying by mobile service provider, On average 12 SMS responses were received daily with minor variations by observation day or day of the week. Compliance was over 74% and 93% of the ratings were received within 30-minutes. Automated text-messaging is a feasible method to monitor appetite ratings in this population. PMID:21251941

  8. Escherichia coli and Salmonella ser. Saintpaul natural co-infection in a free-living ruddy ground dove (Columbina talpacoti: a case report

    W.G.A. Bezerra

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT This study reports a co-infection of Escherichia coli and Salmonella in a free-living ruddy ground dove (Columbina talpacoti received at the Laboratory of Ornithological Studies of the State University of Ceará, Brazil. The bird presented diarrhea, leg paralysis and anorexia, and died shortly after. Necropsy was then performed and samples from lung, kidney, liver and intestine were collected for microbiological and histopathological analyses. Escherichia coli was isolated from cloacal swab, lung and kidney samples. Salmonella ser. Saintpaul was identified in liver and spleen samples. Escherichia coli isolates were tested for the presence of eight diagnostic genes for diarrheagenic pathotypes (STEC, ETEC, EPEC, EIEC, EAEC with conventional polymerase chain reaction (PCR. EAEC was detected in the lung and kidney, and STEC in the intestine. In conclusion, Columbina talpacoti is susceptible to enteroaggregative Escherichia coli and Salmonella ser. Saintpaul infection, which may have public health implications.

  9. Response of testate amoebae to a late Holocene ecosystem shift in an Amazonian peatland.

    Swindles, Graeme T; Kelly, Thomas J; Roucoux, Katherine H; Lawson, Ian T

    2018-03-15

    To date there have only been two studies using testate amoebae as palaeoecological indicators in tropical peatlands. Here we present a new ∼500-year testate amoeba record from San Jorge, a domed peatland in Peruvian Amazonia, which has a well-constrained vegetation history based on pollen analysis. We observe a major shift from Hyalosphenia subflava to Cryptodifflugia oviformis-dominated communities at ∼50 cm depth (c. AD 1760), which suggests a change to drier conditions in the peatland. The application of a statistical transfer function also suggests a deepening of the water table at this time. The transition in the microbial assemblage occurs at a time when pollen and geochemical data indicate drier conditions (reduced influence of river flooding), leading to an ecosystem switch to more ombrotrophic-like conditions in the peatland. Our work illustrates the potential of testate amoebae as important tools in tropical peatland palaeoecology, and the power of multiproxy approaches for understanding the long-term development of tropical peatlands. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  10. What is the optimum sample size for the study of peatland testate amoeba assemblages?

    Mazei, Yuri A; Tsyganov, Andrey N; Esaulov, Anton S; Tychkov, Alexander Yu; Payne, Richard J

    2017-10-01

    Testate amoebae are widely used in ecological and palaeoecological studies of peatlands, particularly as indicators of surface wetness. To ensure data are robust and comparable it is important to consider methodological factors which may affect results. One significant question which has not been directly addressed in previous studies is how sample size (expressed here as number of Sphagnum stems) affects data quality. In three contrasting locations in a Russian peatland we extracted samples of differing size, analysed testate amoebae and calculated a number of widely-used indices: species richness, Simpson diversity, compositional dissimilarity from the largest sample and transfer function predictions of water table depth. We found that there was a trend for larger samples to contain more species across the range of commonly-used sample sizes in ecological studies. Smaller samples sometimes failed to produce counts of testate amoebae often considered minimally adequate. It seems likely that analyses based on samples of different sizes may not produce consistent data. Decisions about sample size need to reflect trade-offs between logistics, data quality, spatial resolution and the disturbance involved in sample extraction. For most common ecological applications we suggest that samples of more than eight Sphagnum stems are likely to be desirable. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  11. Ecological niche models reveal the importance of climate variability for the biogeography of protosteloid amoebae.

    Aguilar, María; Lado, Carlos

    2012-08-01

    Habitat availability and environmental preferences of species are among the most important factors in determining the success of dispersal processes and therefore in shaping the distribution of protists. We explored the differences in fundamental niches and potential distributions of an ecological guild of slime moulds-protosteloid amoebae-in the Iberian Peninsula. A large set of samples collected in a north-east to south-west transect of approximately 1000 km along the peninsula was used to test the hypothesis that, together with the existence of suitable microhabitats, climate conditions may determine the probability of survival of species. Although protosteloid amoebae share similar morphologies and life history strategies, canonical correspondence analyses showed that they have varied ecological optima, and that climate conditions have an important effect in niche differentiation. Maxent environmental niche models provided consistent predictions of the probability of presence of the species based on climate data, and they were used to generate maps of potential distribution in an 'everything is everywhere' scenario. The most important climatic factors were, in both analyses, variables that measure changes in conditions throughout the year, confirming that the alternation of fruiting bodies, cysts and amoeboid stages in the life cycles of protosteloid amoebae constitutes an advantage for surviving in a changing environment. Microhabitat affinity seems to be influenced by climatic conditions, which suggests that the micro-environment may vary at a local scale and change together with the external climate at a larger scale.

  12. Real-time PCR systems targeting giant viruses of amoebae and their virophages.

    Ngounga, Tatsiana; Pagnier, Isabelle; Reteno, Dorine-Gaelle Ikanga; Raoult, Didier; La Scola, Bernard; Colson, Philippe

    2013-01-01

    Giant viruses that infect amoebae, including mimiviruses and marseilleviruses, were first described in 2003. Virophages were subsequently described that infect mimiviruses. Culture isolation with Acanthamoeba spp. and metagenomic studies have shown that these giant viruses are common inhabitants of our biosphere and have enabled the recent detection of these viruses in human samples. However, the genomes of these viruses display substantial genetic diversity, making it a challenge to examine their presence in environmental and clinical samples using conventional and real-time PCR. We designed and evaluated the performance of PCR systems capable of detecting all currently isolated mimiviruses, marseilleviruses and virophages to assess their prevalence in various samples. Our real-time PCR assays accurately detected all or most of the members of the currently delineated lineages of giant viruses infecting acanthamoebae as well as the mimivirus virophages, and enabled accurate classification of the mimiviruses of amoebae in lineages A, B or C. We were able to detect four new mimiviruses directly from environmental samples and correctly classified these viruses within mimivirus lineage C. This was subsequently confirmed by culture on amoebae followed by partial Sanger sequencing. PCR systems such as those implemented here may contribute to an improved understanding of the prevalence of mimiviruses, their virophages and marseilleviruses in humans.

  13. Potential influence of birds on soil testate amoebae in the Arctic

    Mazei, Yuri A.; Lebedeva, Natalia V.; Taskaeva, Anastasia A.; Ivanovsky, Alexander A.; Chernyshov, Viktor A.; Tsyganov, Andrey N.; Payne, Richard J.

    2018-06-01

    Birds can be an important agent of environmental change in High Arctic ecosystems, particularly due to the role of seabirds as a vector transferring nutrients from the marine to terrestrial realms. The soils of bird nesting sites are known to host distinct plant communities but the consequences of bird modification for microorganisms are much less clear. Our focus here is testate amoebae: a widely-distributed group of protists with significant roles in many aspects of ecosystem functioning. We compared the testate amoeba assemblages of a site on Spitsbergen (Svalbard archipelago) affected by nesting birds, with nearby control sites. We found differences in assemblage between sites, typified by reduced relative abundance of Phryganella acropodia and Centropyxis aerophila in bird-modified soils. These changes may reflect a reduced availability of fungal food sources. We found no evidence for differences in assemblage diversity or test concentration between bird-modified and control soils. Our dataset is small but results provide the first evidence for the potential effect of bird modification of soils on testate amoebae in the Arctic. Results show only limited similarity to experimental studies of nutrient addition, implying that response mechanisms may be more complicated than simply additional nutrient supply.

  14. [CHROMATIN ORGANIZATION IN CELL CYCLE OF AMOEBA PROTEUS ACCORDING TO OPTICAL TOMOGRAPHY DATA].

    Demin, S Yu; Berdieva, M A; Podlipaeva, Yu I; Yudin, A L; Goodkov, A V

    2015-01-01

    For the first time the nuclear cycle of large freshwater amoeba Amoeba proteus was studied by the method of optical tomography. The nuclei were fixed in situ in the cells of synchronized culture, stained by DAPI and examined by confocal laser scanning microscope. 3D-images of intranuclear chromatin were studied in details at different stages of nuclear cycle. The obtained data, together with literary ones allow represent the dynamics of structural organization of the nucleus in Amoeba proteus cell cycle in a new fashion. It was concluded that in this species the two-stage interphase takes place, as well as mitosis of peculiar type which does not correspond to any known type of mitosis according to classification existing now. It is presumed that in the course of nuclear cycle the chromosomes and/or their fragments are amplified, this presumption being in a good correspondence with the data about nuclear DNA hyperreplication in the cell cycle of A. proteus. As a result of chromosomes amplification their number may vary at different stages of cell cycle, and it allows to explain the contradictory data concerning the exact number of chromosomes in this species. The elimination of extra-DNA occurs mainly at the stage between prophase and prometaphase. We presume the majority of chromosomes, or may be even all of them to be referred to cholocentric type according to their behaviour during the mitosis.

  15. Energy, water and space use by free-living red kangaroos Macropus rufus and domestic sheep Ovis aries in an Australian rangeland.

    Munn, A J; Dawson, T J; McLeod, S R; Dennis, T; Maloney, S K

    2013-08-01

    We used doubly labelled water to measure field metabolic rates (FMR) and water turnover rates (WTR) in one of Australia's largest native herbivores, the red kangaroo (Macropus rufus) and one of Australia's dominant livestock species, the wool-breed Merino sheep, under free-living conditions in a typical Australian rangeland. Also, we used GPS technology to examine animal space use, along with the comparisons of urine concentration, diet, diet digestibility, and subsequent grazing pressures. We found smaller space-use patterns than previously reported for kangaroos, which were between 14 and 25 % those of sheep. The FMR of a 25-kg kangaroo was 30 % that of a 45-kg sheep, while WTR was 15 % and both were associated with smaller travel distances, lower salt intakes, and higher urine concentration in kangaroos than sheep. After accounting for differences in dry matter digestibility of food eaten by kangaroos (51 %) and sheep (58 %), the relative grazing pressure of a standard (mature, non-reproductive) 25-kg kangaroo was 35 % that of a 45-kg sheep. Even for animals of the same body mass (35 kg), the relative grazing pressure of the kangaroo was estimated to be only 44 % that of the sheep. After accounting for the energetic costs of wool growth by sheep, the FMRs of our sheep and kangaroos were 2-3 times their expected BMRs, which is typical for mammalian FMR:BMRs generally. Notably, data collected from our free-living animals were practically identical to those from animals confined to a semi-natural enclosure (collected in an earlier study under comparable environmental conditions), supporting the idea that FMRs are relatively constrained within species.

  16. Validity of Garmin Vívofit and Polar Loop for measuring daily step counts in free-living conditions in adults

    Adam Šimůnek

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Background: Wrist activity trackers (WATs are becoming popular and widely used for the monitoring of physical activity. However, the validity of many WATs in measuring steps remains unknown. Objective: To determine the validity of the following WATs: Garmin Vívofit (Vívofit and Polar Loop (Loop, by comparing them with well-validated devices, Yamax Digiwalker SW-701 pedometer (Yamax and hip-mounted ActiGraph GT3X+ accelerometer (ActiGraph, in healthy adults. Methods: In free-living conditions, adult volunteers (N = 20 aged 25 to 52 years wore two WATs (Vívofit and Loop with Yamax and ActiGraph simultaneously over a 7 day period. The validity of Vívofit and Loop was assessed by comparing each device with the Yamax and ActiGraph, using a paired samples t-test, mean absolute percentage errors, intraclass correlation coefficients (ICC and Bland-Altman plots. Results: The differences between average steps per day were significant for all devices, except the difference between Vívofit and Yamax (p = .06; d = 0.2. Compared with Yamax and ActiGraph, the mean absolute percentage errors of Vívofit were -4.0% and 12.5%, respectively. For Loop the mean absolute percentage error was 8.9% compared with Yamax and 28.0% compared with ActiGraph. Vívofit showed a very strong correlation with both Yamax and ActiGraph (ICC = .89. Loop showed a very strong correlation with Yamax (ICC = .89 and a strong correlation with ActiGraph (ICC = .70. Conclusions: Vívofit showed higher validity than Loop in measuring daily step counts in free-living conditions. Loop appears to overestimate the daily number of steps in individuals who take more steps during a day.

  17. Determination of perfluorinated sulfonate and perfluorinated acids in tissues of free-living European beaver (castor fiber L.) by d-SPE/ micro-UHPLC-MS/MS.

    Surma, Magdalena; Giżejewski, Zygmunt; Zieliński, Henryk

    2015-10-01

    Perfluorooctanesulfonate (PFOS) and perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) are the main representatives of an rising class of persistent organic pollutants (POPs), perfluorochemicals (PFCs). In this study, determination of selected PFCs concentration in liver, brain, tail, adipose and peritoneum tissues of free-living European beaver (Castor fiber L.) was addressed. Tissue samples, collected from beavers living in Masurian Lakeland (NE Poland), were analyzed by dispersive Solid Phase Extraction (d-SPE) with micro-UHPLC-MS/MS system. In a group of ten selected pefrluorinated compounds only two perfluorinated acids (PFOA and PFNA) and one perfluorinated sulfonate (PFOS) were quantified. PFOA was detected in all analysed tissue samples in both female and male beavers in a range from 0.55 to 0.98ngg(-1) ww whereas PFOS was identified in all analyzed female beaver tissues and only in liver, subcutaneous adipose and peritoneum tissues of male beavers at the concentration level from 0.86 to 5.08ngg(-1) ww. PFNA was only identified in female beaver tissues (liver, subcutaneous adipose and peritoneum) in a range from 1.50 to 6.61ngg(-1) ww. This study demonstrated the bioaccumulation of PFCs in tissue samples collected from beavers living in area known as green lungs of Poland. The results provided in this study indicate for the increasing risk of PFCs occurrence in the environment and the level of PFCs in tissue of free-living European beavers may serve as bioindicator of environmental pollution by these compounds. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Heart rate variability reveals that a decrease in parasympathetic ('rest-and-digest') activity dominates autonomic stress responses in a free-living seabird.

    Müller, Martina S; Vyssotski, Alexei L; Yamamoto, Maki; Yoda, Ken

    2017-10-01

    The autonomic stress response, often referred to as the 'fight-or-flight' response, is a highly conserved physiological reaction to stress in vertebrates that occurs via a decrease in parasympathetic (PNS) activity, which promotes self-maintenance 'rest and digest' processes, and an increase in sympathetic (SNS) activity, which prepares an animal for danger ('fight-or-flight'). Though the PNS and SNS both innervate most organs, they often control different tissues and functions within those organs (though the pacemaker of the heart is controlled by both). Moreover the PNS and SNS are regulated independently. Yet until now, most studies of autonomic stress responses in non-model species focused only on the SNS response. We used external electrocardiogram loggers to measure heart rate and heart rate variability indexes that reflect PNS and SNS activity in a seabird, the Streaked Shearwater (Calonectris leucomelas), during the stress of handling, and during recovery in the nest burrow or during restraint in a cloth bag. We show for the first time in a free-living animal that the autonomic stress response is mediated primarily by a rapid decrease in PNS activity: handling stress induced a large and long-lasting depression of PNS 'rest-and-digest' activity that required two hours to recover. We also found evidence for a substantially smaller and shorter-lasting SNS 'fight-or-flight' response. Confinement in a cloth bag was less stressful for birds than handling, but more stressful than recovering in nest burrows. We show that quantifying autonomic activity from heart rate variability is effective for non-invasively studying stress physiology in free-living animals. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Corticosterone stress response and plasma metabolite levels during breeding and molt in a free-living migratory songbird, the wood thrush (Hylocichla mustelina).

    Done, Tyler; Gow, Elizabeth A; Stutchbury, Bridget J M

    2011-04-01

    Many birds face energetic trade-offs between different life history stages, such as reproductive effort, feather molt and the non-breeding period. Little is known about how physiological measures of condition (corticosterone, plasma metabolites) in free-living birds change from nesting stages to the post-breeding molt period or whether this is influenced by prior reproductive effort. We evaluated whether corticosterone (CORT) and plasma metabolite levels vary with date, nest stage and sex in a free-living migratory songbird, the wood thrush (Hylocichla mustelina). We also tested whether (1) baseline CORT levels early in the season were predictive of subsequent reproductive success and (2) whether prior reproductive effort influenced CORT levels and blood metabolites during molt. Baseline CORT levels decreased with date during both the incubation stage and nestling stage, but did not vary significantly across stage of breeding season. Stress-induced CORT declined with date during incubation and varied significantly across breeding stage, with lower levels during feather molt. Profiles of the metabolites of β-hydroxybutyrate, glycerol, and triglyceride did not vary significantly with date or breeding stage. Only triglycerides varied significantly with sex, with females having higher levels than males. Reproductive output was highly variable (0-10 fledglings per season) but baseline CORT levels in females during the first incubation period of the season was not related to subsequent reproductive output. Prior reproductive effort, measured as the cumulative number of young hatched during the breeding season, was positively related to stress-induced CORT during molt. High reproductive effort in wood thrush appears to have physiological carry-over effects into the molt period which could potentially affect rate of molt and preparation for fall migration. Copyright © 2011. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  20. Benefits of Substituting Sitting with Standing and Walking in Free-Living Conditions for Cardiometabolic Risk Markers, Cognition and Mood in Overweight Adults.

    Duvivier, Bernard M F M; Schaper, Nicolaas C; Koster, Annemarie; van Kan, Linh; Peters, Harry P F; Adam, Jos J; Giesbrecht, Timo; Kornips, Esther; Hulsbosch, Martine; Willems, Paul; Hesselink, Matthijs K C; Schrauwen, Patrick; Savelberg, Hans H C M

    2017-01-01

    Background: We investigated whether substituting sitting with standing and self-perceived light walking in free-living conditions would improve cardiometabolic risk factors, mood, and cognition in overweight/obese adults. Methods: In a randomized, cross-over study, 24 (m/f: 13/11) sedentary overweight/obese participants (64 ± 7 years, BMI 29 ± 2 kg/m 2 ) followed two activity regimens of each 4 days in free-living conditions: "Sit": sitting 13.5 h/day, standing 1.4 h/day, self-perceived light-intensity walking 0.7 h/day; for "SitLess" these activities lasted 7.6, 4.0, and 4.3 h/day, respectively. Meals were standardized and physical activity was assessed by accelerometry (activPAL). Insulin sensitivity (expressed as Matsuda-index based on an oral glucose tolerance test), circulating lipids, blood pressure, mood (pleasantness and arousal), and cognition were assessed on the morning after the activity regimens. Quality of life and sleep were assessed on the last day of the activity regimens. Results: We observed that AUC (0-190 min) for insulin decreased by 20% after SitLess vs. Sit [10,125 (656) vs. 12,633 (818); p = 0.006]. Insulin sensitivity improved by 16% after SitLess vs. Sit [Matsuda-index, mean (SEM): 6.45 (0.25) vs. 5.58 (0.25) respectively; p = 0.007]. Fasting triglycerides, non-HDL-cholesterol, and apolipoprotein B decreased by 32, 7, and 4% respectively, whereas HDL-cholesterol increased by 7% after SitLess vs. Sit (all p walking is an effective strategy to improve cardiometabolic risk factors in overweight/obese subjects.

  1. The potential influence of short-term environmental variability on the composition of testate amoeba communities in Sphagnum peatlands.

    Sullivan, Maura E; Booth, Robert K

    2011-07-01

    Testate amoebae are a group of moisture-sensitive, shell-producing protozoa that have been widely used as indicators of changes in mean water-table depth within oligotrophic peatlands. However, short-term environmental variability (i.e., sub-annual) also probably influences community composition. The objective of this study was to assess the potential influence of short-term environmental variability on the composition of testate amoeba communities in Sphagnum-dominated peatlands. Testate amoebae and environmental conditions, including hourly measurements of relative humidity within the upper centimeter of the peatland surface, were examined throughout the 2008 growing season at 72 microsites within 11 peatlands of Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, USA. Relationships among testate amoeba communities, vegetation, depth to water table, pH, and an index of short-term environmental variability (EVI), were examined using nonmetric multidimensional scaling and correlation analysis. Results suggest that EVI influences testate amoeba communities, with some taxa more abundant under highly variable conditions (e.g., Arcella discoides, Difflugia pulex, and Hyalosphenia subflava) and others more abundant when environmental conditions at the peatland surface were relatively stable (e.g., Archerella flavum and Bullinularia indica). The magnitude of environmental variability experienced at the peatland surface appears to be primarily controlled by vegetation composition and density. In particular, sites with dense Sphagnum cover had lower EVI values than sites with loose-growing Sphagnum or vegetation dominated by vascular plants and/or non-Sphagnum bryophytes. Our results suggest that more environmental information may be inferred from testate amoebae than previously recognized. Knowledge of relationships between testate amoebae and short-term environmental variability should lead to more detailed and refined environmental inferences.

  2. A mobile phone food record app to digitally capture dietary intake for adolescents in a free-living environment: usability study.

    Casperson, Shanon L; Sieling, Jared; Moon, Jon; Johnson, LuAnn; Roemmich, James N; Whigham, Leah

    2015-03-13

    Mobile technologies are emerging as valuable tools to collect and assess dietary intake. Adolescents readily accept and adopt new technologies; thus, a food record app (FRapp) may be a useful tool to better understand adolescents' dietary intake and eating patterns. We sought to determine the amenability of adolescents, in a free-living environment with minimal parental input, to use the FRapp to record their dietary intake. Eighteen community-dwelling adolescents (11-14 years) received detailed instructions to record their dietary intake for 3-7 days using the FRapp. Participants were instructed to capture before and after images of all foods and beverages consumed and to include a fiducial marker in the image. Participants were also asked to provide text descriptors including amount and type of all foods and beverages consumed. Eight of 18 participants were able to follow all instructions: included pre- and post-meal images, a fiducial marker, and a text descriptor and collected diet records on 2 weekdays and 1 weekend day. Dietary intake was recorded on average for 3.2 (SD 1.3 days; 68% weekdays and 32% weekend days) with an average of 2.2 (SD 1.1) eating events per day per participant. A total of 143 eating events were recorded, of which 109 had at least one associated image and 34 were recorded with text only. Of the 109 eating events with images, 66 included all foods, beverages and a fiducial marker and 44 included both a pre- and post-meal image. Text was included with 78 of the captured images. Of the meals recorded, 36, 33, 35, and 39 were breakfasts, lunches, dinners, and snacks, respectively. These data suggest that mobile devices equipped with an app to record dietary intake will be used by adolescents in a free-living environment; however, a minority of participants followed all directions. User-friendly mobile food record apps may increase participant amenability, increasing our understanding of adolescent dietary intake and eating patterns. To

  3. Photo-dynamics of the lyophilized photo-activated adenylate cyclase NgPAC2 from the amoeboflagellate Naegleria gruberi NEG-M strain

    Penzkofer, A.; Tanwar, M.; Veetil, S.K.; Kateriya, S.; Stierl, M.; Hegemann, P.

    2013-01-01

    Highlights: • Lyophilizing of NgPAC2 from Naegleria gruberi caused loss of BLUF domain activity. • Photo-induced tyrosine to flavin electron transfer in lyophilized NgPAC2. • Photo-induced Tyr–Tyr cross-linking to o,o′-dityrosine in lyophilized NgPAC2. • Photo-induced partial flavin cofactor reduction in lyophilized NgPAC2. • Two NgPAC2 conformations with fast and slow photo-induced electron transfer. - Abstract: The absorption and emission spectroscopic behavior of lyophilized photo-activated adenylate cyclase NgPAC2 from the amoeboflagellate Naegleria gruberi NEG-M strain consisting of a BLUF domain (BLUF = Blue Light sensor Using Flavin) and a cyclase homology domain was studied in the dark, during blue-light exposure and after blue-light exposure at a temperature of 4 °C. The BLUF domain photo-cycle dynamics observed for snap-frozen NgPAC2 was lost by lyophilization (no signaling state formation with flavin absorption red-shift). Instead, blue-light photo-excitation of lyophilized NgPAC2 caused sterically restricted Tyr–Tyr cross-linking (o,o′-ditysosine formation) and partial flavin cofactor reduction

  4. Photo-dynamics of the lyophilized photo-activated adenylate cyclase NgPAC2 from the amoeboflagellate Naegleria gruberi NEG-M strain

    Penzkofer, A., E-mail: alfons.penzkofer@physik.uni-regensburg.de [Fakultät für Physik, Universität Regensburg, Universitätsstrasse 31, D-93053 Regensburg (Germany); Tanwar, M.; Veetil, S.K.; Kateriya, S. [Department of Biochemistry, University of Delhi South Campus, Benito Juarez Road, New Delhi 110021 (India); Stierl, M.; Hegemann, P. [Institut für Biologie/Experimentelle Biophysik, Humboldt Universität zu Berlin, Invalidenstrasse 42, D-10115 Berlin (Germany)

    2013-09-23

    Highlights: • Lyophilizing of NgPAC2 from Naegleria gruberi caused loss of BLUF domain activity. • Photo-induced tyrosine to flavin electron transfer in lyophilized NgPAC2. • Photo-induced Tyr–Tyr cross-linking to o,o′-dityrosine in lyophilized NgPAC2. • Photo-induced partial flavin cofactor reduction in lyophilized NgPAC2. • Two NgPAC2 conformations with fast and slow photo-induced electron transfer. - Abstract: The absorption and emission spectroscopic behavior of lyophilized photo-activated adenylate cyclase NgPAC2 from the amoeboflagellate Naegleria gruberi NEG-M strain consisting of a BLUF domain (BLUF = Blue Light sensor Using Flavin) and a cyclase homology domain was studied in the dark, during blue-light exposure and after blue-light exposure at a temperature of 4 °C. The BLUF domain photo-cycle dynamics observed for snap-frozen NgPAC2 was lost by lyophilization (no signaling state formation with flavin absorption red-shift). Instead, blue-light photo-excitation of lyophilized NgPAC2 caused sterically restricted Tyr–Tyr cross-linking (o,o′-ditysosine formation) and partial flavin cofactor reduction.

  5. Control of Branchionus sp. and Amoeba sp. in cultures of Arthrospira sp. Control de Branchionus sp. y Amoeba sp. en cultivos de Arthrospira sp.

    Carlos Méndez

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Cultivation of cyanobacterium Arthrospira sp. has been developed in many countries for the production of proteins, pigments and other compounds. Outdoor mass cultures are often affected by biological contamination, drastically reducing productivity as far as bringing death. This study evaluates the control of Branchionus sp. and Amoeba sp. with two chemical compounds: urea (U and ammonium bicarbonate (AB, in laboratory conditions and outdoor mass culture of Arthrospira sp. The lethal concentration 100 (LC100 at 24 h for Branchionus sp. and Amoeba sp. determined was of 60-80 mg L-1 (U and 100-150 mg L-1 (AB. The average effective inhibition concentration for 50% of the population (IC50 in Arthrospira sp., after 72 h, was 80 mg L-1 (U and 150 mg L-1 (AB. The application of doses of 60 mg L-1 (U or 100 mg L-1 (AB in the outdoor mass culture of this contaminated microalga, completely inhibited grazing and did not affect the growth of Arthrospira sp. but rather promoted rapid recovery of algal density at levels prior to infestation. These compounds provided an economical and effective control of predators in cultures of Arthrospira sp.El cultivo de la cianobacteria Arthrospira sp. ha sido desarrollado en muchos países para la obtención de proteínas, pigmentos y otros compuestos. Cultivo que a nivel industrial se ve afectado frecuentemente por contaminación biológica, reduciendo drásticamente la productividad hasta causar la muerte. Este estudio evalúa el control de Branchionus sp. y de Amoeba sp. con dos compuestos químicos, la urea (U y bicarbonato de amonio (AB en cultivos de Arthrospira sp. La concentración letal 100 (LC100 determinada a las 24 h para Branchionus sp. y Amoeba sp. fue de 60-80 mg L-1 (U y 100-150 mg L-1 (AB. La concentración media de inhibición efectiva, después de 72 h, para el 50% de la población (IC50 en Arthrospira fue de 80 mg L-1 (U y 150 mg L-1 (AB. La aplicación de dosis de 60 mg L-1 (U ó 100 mg L-1 (AB en

  6. Testate amoebae communities sensitive to surface moisture conditions in Patagonian peatlands

    Loisel, J.; Booth, R.; Charman, D.; van Bellen, S.; Yu, Z.

    2017-12-01

    Here we examine moss surface samples that were collected during three field campaigns (2005, 2010, 2014) across southern Patagonian peatlands to assess the potential use of testate amoebae and 13C isotope data as proxy indicators of soil moisture. These proxies have been widely tested across North America, but their use as paleoecological tools remains sparse in the southern hemisphere. Samples were collected along a hydrological gradient spanning a range of water table depth from 0cm in wet hollows to over 85cm in dry hummocks. Moss moisture content was measured in the field. Over 25 taxa were identified, with many of them not found in North America. Ordinations indicate statistically significant and dominant effects of soil moisture and water table depth on testate assemblages, though interestingly 13C is even more strongly correlated with testates amoebae than direct soil conditions. It is possible that moss 13C signature constitutes a compound indicator that represents seasonal soil moisture better than opportunistic sampling during field campaigns. There is no significant effect of year or site across the dataset. In addition to providing a training set that translates testate amoebae moisture tolerance range into water tabel depth for Patagonian peatlands, we also compare our results with those from the North American training set to show that, despite 'novel' Patagonian taxa, the robustness of international training sets is probably sufficient to quantify most changes in soil moisture from any site around the world. We also identify key indicator species that are shown to be of universal value in peat-based hydrological reconstructions.

  7. Biochemical and microbiological evidence for fermentative digestion in free-living land iguanas (Conolophus pallidus) and marine iguanas (Amblyrhynchus cristatus) on the Galápagos archipelago.

    Mackie, Roderick I; Rycyk, Mathew; Ruemmler, Rebecca L; Aminov, Rustam I; Wikelski, Martin

    2004-01-01

    Herbivorous lizards are potentially capable of high digestive efficiency, but the presence of an indigenous microbial population has been implied from measurements of activity rather than directly studied. This study is the first to provide direct biochemical and microbiological evidence for fermentative digestion in free-living land iguanas (Conolophus pallidus) and marine iguanas (Amblyrhynchus cristatus) from the Galapagos archipelago. In marine iguanas, the stomach and large capacious colon contained ca. 32% and 60%, respectively, of the weight of total gut content. Total volatile fatty acid concentration was ca. 150 and 180 mM, respectively, for marine and land iguanas. Molar proportions of acetate, propionate, and butyrate (80.3%, 9.5%, and 3.5%) in land iguana fecal samples were similar to those for marine iguanas. Examination of fecal samples using confocal and transmission electron microscopy, as well as cultivable counts, revealed a dense and diverse population of bacteria, with spores prominent. Total culturable counts of anaerobes (2.22x10(8) g(-1) wet weight of fecal material) outnumbered aerobes on average by a factor of ca. 700. Combined, these results strongly support the contention that these unique herbivorous lizards are largely dependent on the presence and metabolic activities of a resident bacterial population in order to hydrolyze and ferment plant polymers that are indigestible to the host.

  8. Species Composition and Structure of the Communities of Plant-Parasitic and Free-Living Soil Nematodes in the Greenhouses of Botanical Gardens of Ukraine

    Gubin A.I.

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Species Composition and Structure of the Communities of Plant-Parasitic and Free-Living Soil Nematodes in the Greenhouses of Botanical Gardens of Ukraine. Gubin, A. I., Sigareva, D. D. — In greenhouses of botanical gardens of Ukraine 81 species of nematodes were found. The richest by the number of species was Tylenchida order that was presented by 25 species (31 % of species composition. The dominant group of nematodes was plant-parasitic (most frequent was Rotylenchus robustus (de Man, 1876 Filipjev, 1936 and Meloidogyne incognita (Kofoid et White, 1919 Chitwood, 1949. The group of saprobiotic nematodes, which was presented by 52 species (64 %, appeared to be the richest by the number of species. It is shown, that formation of nematode communities in greenhouses of botanical gardens was caused by the interaction of many related factors, crucial of which is the composition of plant collections. The structure of communities is quite constant and almost independent of the quantity of nematodes species. Plant-parasitic species dominate by the number and frequency of detection, and represent a kind of a core of nematode communities.

  9. Chromosome Evolution in the Free-Living Flatworms: First Evidence of Intrachromosomal Rearrangements in Karyotype Evolution of Macrostomum lignano (Platyhelminthes, Macrostomida)

    Zadesenets, Kira S.; Ershov, Nikita I.; Berezikov, Eugene; Rubtsov, Nikolay B.

    2017-01-01

    The free-living flatworm Macrostomum lignano is a hidden tetraploid. Its genome was formed by a recent whole genome duplication followed by chromosome fusions. Its karyotype (2n = 8) consists of a pair of large chromosomes (MLI1), which contain regions of all other chromosomes, and three pairs of small metacentric chromosomes. Comparison of MLI1 with metacentrics was performed by painting with microdissected DNA probes and fluorescent in situ hybridization of unique DNA fragments. Regions of MLI1 homologous to small metacentrics appeared to be contiguous. Besides the loss of DNA repeat clusters (pericentromeric and telomeric repeats and the 5S rDNA cluster) from MLI1, the difference between small metacentrics MLI2 and MLI4 and regions homologous to them in MLI1 were revealed. Abnormal karyotypes found in the inbred DV1/10 subline were analyzed, and structurally rearranged chromosomes were described with the painting technique, suggesting the mechanism of their origin. The revealed chromosomal rearrangements generate additional diversity, opening the way toward massive loss of duplicated genes from a duplicated genome. Our findings suggest that the karyotype of M. lignano is in the early stage of genome diploidization after whole genome duplication, and further studies on M. lignano and closely related species can address many questions about karyotype evolution in animals. PMID:29084138

  10. Pyrosequencing analysis of free-living and attached bacterial communities in Meiliang Bay, Lake Taihu, a large eutrophic shallow lake in China.

    Tang, Xiangming; Li, Linlin; Shao, Keqiang; Wang, Boweng; Cai, Xianlei; Zhang, Lei; Chao, Jianying; Gao, Guang

    2015-01-01

    To elucidate the relationship between particle-attached (PA, ≥ 5.0 μm) and free-living (FL, 0.2-5.0 μm) bacterial communities, samplings were collected seasonally from November 2011 to August 2012 in Meiliang Bay, Lake Taihu, China. We used 454 pyrosequencing of 16S rRNA genes to study bacterial diversity and structure of PA and FL communities. The analysis rendered 37,985 highly qualified reads, subsequently assigned to 1755 operational taxonomic units (97% similarity) for the 8 samples. Although 27 high-level taxonomic groups were obtained, the 3 dominant phyla (Proteobacteria, Actinobacteria, and Bacteroidetes) comprised about 75.9% and 82.4% of the PA and FL fractions, respectively. Overall, we found no significant differences between community types, as indicated by ANOSIM R statistics (R = 0.063, P > 0.05) and the Parsimony test (P = 0.222). Dynamics of bacterial communities were correlated with changes in concentrations of total suspended solids (TSS) and total phosphorus (TP). In summer, a significant taxonomic overlap in the 2 size fractions was observed when Cyanobacteria, a major contributor of TSS and TP, dominated in the water, highlighting the potential rapid exchange between PA and FL bacterial populations in large shallow eutrophic lakes.

  11. Characterization of Low Pathogenic Avian Influenza Virus Subtype H9N2 Isolated from Free-Living Mynah Birds (Acridotheres tristis) in the Sultanate of Oman.

    Body, Mohammad H; Alrarawahi, Abdulmajeed H; Alhubsy, Saif S; Saravanan, Nirmala; Rajmony, Sunil; Mansoor, Muhammad Khalid

    2015-06-01

    A low pathogenic avian influenza virus was identified from free-living birds (mynah, Acridotheres tristis) of the starling family. Virus was isolated by inoculation of homogenized suspension from lung, tracheal, spleen, and cloacal swabs into the allantoic cavity of embryonated chicken eggs. Subtype of the isolate was characterized as H9N2 by hemagglutination inhibition test using monospecific chicken antisera to a wide range of influenza reference strain. Pathogenicity of the isolate was determined by intravenous pathogenicity index. The virus was reisolated from experimentally infected chicken. Additionally, the isolate was subjected to reverse transcriptase PCR using partial hemagglutinin (HA) gene-specific primers and yielded an amplicon of 487 bp. HA gene sequence analysis revealed 99% sequence homology among mynah and chicken isolates from Oman. On phylogenetic analysis, isolates from mynah (A/mynnah/Oman/AIVS6/2005) and chicken (A/chicken/Oman/AIVS3/2006; A/chicken/Oman/AIVS7/2006) clustered together tightly, indicating these free-flying birds may be a source of introduction of H9N2 subtype in poultry bird in Oman. Moreover, the HA gene of H9N2 isolates from Oman resembled those of viruses of the G1-like lineage and were very similar to those from United Arab Emirates.

  12. Examining acute bi-directional relationships between affect, physical feeling states, and physical activity in free-living situations using electronic ecological momentary assessment.

    Liao, Yue; Chou, Chih-Ping; Huh, Jimi; Leventhal, Adam; Dunton, Genevieve

    2017-06-01

    Current knowledge about the relationship of physical activity with acute affective and physical feeling states is informed largely by lab-based studies, which have limited generalizability to the natural ecology. This study used ecological momentary assessment to assess subjective affective and physical feeling states in free-living settings across 4 days from 110 non-physically active adults (Age M = 40.4, SD = 9.7). Light physical activity (LPA) and moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) were measured objectively by an accelerometer. Multilevel modeling was used to test the bi-directional associations between affective and physical feeling states and LPA/MVPA minutes. Higher positive affect, lower negative affect and fatigue were associated with more MVPA over the subsequent 15 min, while higher negative affect and energy were associated with more LPA over the subsequent 15 and 30 min. Additionally, more LPA and MVPA were associated with feeling more energetic over the subsequent 15 and 30 min, and more LPA was additionally associated with feeling more negative and less tired over the subsequent 15 and 30 min. Positive and negative affective states might serve as antecedents to but not consequences of MVPA in adults' daily lives. Changes in LPA may be predicted and followed by negative affective states. Physical feeling states appear to lead up to and follow changes in both LPA and MVPA.

  13. Hematologic and Total Plasma Protein Values in Free-Living Red-tailed Amazon Parrot Nestlings (Amazona brasiliensis) in Paraná State, Brazil.

    Vaz, Frederico F; Locatelli-Dittrich, Rosangela; Sipinski, Elenise A B; Abbud, Maria C; Sezerban, Rafael M; Schmidt, Elizabeth M S; Dittrich, Jaqueline; Cavalheiro, Maria L

    2015-09-01

    The red-tailed Amazon parrot (Amazona brasiliensis) is an endangered psittacid species that is endemic in the south and southeast Brazilian Atlantic coastal region. Hematologic evaluation is important to monitor the health of these birds, and information about laboratory values for this species is scarce. Hematologic and total plasma protein profiles were determined for 33 free-living nestling parrots in Paraná state, Brazil. Parrots were temporarily removed from the nest and manually restrained to record body weight and collect blood samples. Mean body weight was 400 g in 20 birds (group 2). Significantly higher levels of mean corpuscular hemoglobin concentrations, white blood cell counts, monocytes, and basophils were observed in younger birds (group 1). A stress leukogram (high white blood cell and heterophil count) was found in all nestlings, suggesting stress induced by capture and restraint. Parameters obtained in this study will be essential to assess the physiologic and pathologic condition of wild parrots, to evaluate the effects of environmental changes on their health, and to contribute to conservation efforts of this endangered species.

  14. Relationships between free-living protozoa, cultivable Legionella spp., and water quality characteristics in three drinking water supplies in the Caribbean.

    Valster, Rinske M; Wullings, Bart A; van den Berg, Riemsdijk; van der Kooij, Dick

    2011-10-01

    The study whose results are presented here aimed at identifying free-living protozoa (FLP) and conditions favoring the growth of these organisms and cultivable Legionella spp. in drinking water supplies in a tropical region. Treated and distributed water (±30°C) of the water supplies of three Caribbean islands were sampled and investigated with molecular techniques, based on the 18S rRNA gene. The protozoan host Hartmannella vermiformis and cultivable Legionella pneumophila were observed in all three supplies. Operational taxonomic units (OTUs) with the highest similarity to the potential or candidate hosts Acanthamoeba spp., Echinamoeba exundans, E. thermarum, and an Neoparamoeba sp. were detected as well. In total, 59 OTUs of FLP were identified. The estimated protozoan richness did not differ significantly between the three supplies. In supply CA-1, the concentration of H. vermiformis correlated with the concentration of Legionella spp. and clones related to Amoebozoa predominated (82%) in the protozoan community. These observations, the low turbidity (water. The absence of H. vermiformis in most samples from supply CA-3 suggests that growth of this protozoan is limited at ATP concentrations of <1 ng liter(-1).

  15. Relationships between Free-Living Protozoa, Cultivable Legionella spp., and Water Quality Characteristics in Three Drinking Water Supplies in the Caribbean▿†

    Valster, Rinske M.; Wullings, Bart A.; van den Berg, Riemsdijk; van der Kooij, Dick

    2011-01-01

    The study whose results are presented here aimed at identifying free-living protozoa (FLP) and conditions favoring the growth of these organisms and cultivable Legionella spp. in drinking water supplies in a tropical region. Treated and distributed water (±30°C) of the water supplies of three Caribbean islands were sampled and investigated with molecular techniques, based on the 18S rRNA gene. The protozoan host Hartmannella vermiformis and cultivable Legionella pneumophila were observed in all three supplies. Operational taxonomic units (OTUs) with the highest similarity to the potential or candidate hosts Acanthamoeba spp., Echinamoeba exundans, E. thermarum, and an Neoparamoeba sp. were detected as well. In total, 59 OTUs of FLP were identified. The estimated protozoan richness did not differ significantly between the three supplies. In supply CA-1, the concentration of H. vermiformis correlated with the concentration of Legionella spp. and clones related to Amoebozoa predominated (82%) in the protozoan community. These observations, the low turbidity (water. The absence of H. vermiformis in most samples from supply CA-3 suggests that growth of this protozoan is limited at ATP concentrations of <1 ng liter−1. PMID:21873489

  16. Tinker-OpenMM: Absolute and relative alchemical free energies using AMOEBA on GPUs.

    Harger, Matthew; Li, Daniel; Wang, Zhi; Dalby, Kevin; Lagardère, Louis; Piquemal, Jean-Philip; Ponder, Jay; Ren, Pengyu

    2017-09-05

    The capabilities of the polarizable force fields for alchemical free energy calculations have been limited by the high computational cost and complexity of the underlying potential energy functions. In this work, we present a GPU-based general alchemical free energy simulation platform for polarizable potential AMOEBA. Tinker-OpenMM, the OpenMM implementation of the AMOEBA simulation engine has been modified to enable both absolute and relative alchemical simulations on GPUs, which leads to a ∼200-fold improvement in simulation speed over a single CPU core. We show that free energy values calculated using this platform agree with the results of Tinker simulations for the hydration of organic compounds and binding of host-guest systems within the statistical errors. In addition to absolute binding, we designed a relative alchemical approach for computing relative binding affinities of ligands to the same host, where a special path was applied to avoid numerical instability due to polarization between the different ligands that bind to the same site. This scheme is general and does not require ligands to have similar scaffolds. We show that relative hydration and binding free energy calculated using this approach match those computed from the absolute free energy approach. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  17. Two distinct sensing pathways allow recognition of Klebsiella pneumoniae by Dictyostelium amoebae.

    Lima, Wanessa C; Balestrino, Damien; Forestier, Christiane; Cosson, Pierre

    2014-03-01

    Recognition of bacteria by metazoans is mediated by receptors that recognize different types of microorganisms and elicit specific cellular responses. The soil amoebae Dictyostelium discoideum feeds upon a variable mixture of environmental bacteria, and it is expected to recognize and adapt to various food sources. To date, however, no bacteria-sensing mechanisms have been described. In this study, we isolated a Dictyostelium mutant (fspA KO) unable to grow in the presence of non-capsulated Klebsiella pneumoniae bacteria, but growing as efficiently as wild-type cells in the presence of other bacteria, such as Bacillus subtilis. fspA KO cells were also unable to respond to K. pneumoniae and more specifically to bacterially secreted folate in a chemokinetic assay, while they responded readily to B. subtilis. Remarkably, both WT and fspA KO cells were able to grow in the presence of capsulated LM21 K. pneumoniae, and responded to purified capsule, indicating that capsule recognition may represent an alternative, FspA-independent mechanism for K. pneumoniae sensing. When LM21 capsule synthesis genes were deleted, growth and chemokinetic response were lost for fspA KO cells, but not for WT cells. Altogether, these results indicate that Dictyostelium amoebae use specific recognition mechanisms to respond to different K. pneumoniae elements. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  18. Evidence of parasexual activity in "asexual amoebae" Cochliopodium spp. (Amoebozoa): extensive cellular and nuclear fusion.

    Tekle, Yonas I; Anderson, O Roger; Lecky, Ariel F

    2014-09-01

    The majority of microbial eukaryotes have long been considered asexual, though new evidence indicates sex, or sexual-like (parasexual) behaviors that deviate from the usual union of two gametes, among other variant aspects. Over a dozen amoebozoans are implicated to have sexual stages. However, the exact mechanism by which sex occurs in these lineages remains elusive. This is mainly due to the diverse quality and cryptic nature of their life cycle. In this study we present evidence of some previously unreported aspects of the life cycle of an amoeba, Cochliopodium, that undergoes unusual intraspecific interactions using light microscopy and immunocytochemistry. Similar to other amoebozoans, Cochliopodium, is considered asexual with no published reports of sex or parasexuality. We also investigated environmental conditions that govern the observed intraspecific interactions. Both light microscopic and immunocytochemistry evidence demonstrates Cochliopodium undergoes cellular fusion (plasmogamy) and nuclear fusion (karyogamy). Large plasmodia eventually undergo karyogamy and contain large fused, polyploid, nuclei. These are observed to fragment, subsequently, by karyotomy (nuclear fission) and cytoplasmic fission to yield uninucleated amoebae. This process could lead to a non-meiotic, parasexual exchange of chromosomes in Cochliopodium. These findings strongly suggest that Cochliopodium is involved in parasexual activity and should no longer be considered strictly asexual. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  19. Natural infection by endoparasites among free-living wild animals Infecção natural por endoparasitas em animais silvestres de vida-livre

    Luciane Holsback

    Full Text Available The objective of this study was to investigate the frequency of occurrence and variety of intestinal parasites among free-living wild animals. Fecal samples from wild mammals and birds at rehabilitation centers in the states of Mato Grosso do Sul and São Paulo were analyzed by sedimentation and flotation-centrifugation methods. Parasite eggs, oocysts, cysts and/or trophozoites were found in 71% of the samples. Cryptosporidium sp. oocysts were detected in fecal samples from oncillas (Leopardus tigrinus and scaly-headed parrots (Pionus maximiliani. Giardia cysts were identified in the feces of a gray brocket (Mazama gouazoubira. Among the most common parasites found, there were eggs from Toxocara cati, Toxascaris leonina and Ancylostoma tubaeforme, and from Cestoda. Several Enterobius sp. eggs were found in the feces of red howler monkeys (Alouatta seniculus. It can be concluded from this study that despite the small number of samples, the diversity of parasites found was noteworthy. Additional information about parasite endofauna in wild animals is needed, since their presence might suggest that there could be proximity to and interactions with domestic animals and/or humans. In addition, further studies on parasites from free-living wild animals are of prime importance for understanding the intensity of anthropic changes in wild environments.O objetivo deste trabalho foi pesquisar a frequência de ocorrência e a variedade de parasitas intestinais de animais silvestres de vida livre. Amostras de fezes de mamíferos e aves silvestres de centros de reabilitação dos Estados do Mato Grosso do Sul e São Paulo, foram analisadas pelos métodos de sedimentação e de centrífugo-flutuação. Foram encontrados ovos, oocistos, cistos e/ou trofozoítos de parasitas em 71% das amostras. Oocistos de Cryptosporidium sp. foram detectados em amostras de fezes de gato-do-mato-pequeno (Leopardus tigrinus e maritacas (Pionus maximiliani. Cistos de Giardia

  20. Estimating Physical Activity and Sedentary Behavior in a Free-Living Context: A Pragmatic Comparison of Consumer-Based Activity Trackers and ActiGraph Accelerometry.

    Gomersall, Sjaan R; Ng, Norman; Burton, Nicola W; Pavey, Toby G; Gilson, Nicholas D; Brown, Wendy J

    2016-09-07

    Activity trackers are increasingly popular with both consumers and researchers for monitoring activity and for promoting positive behavior change. However, there is a lack of research investigating the performance of these devices in free-living contexts, for which findings are likely to vary from studies conducted in well-controlled laboratory settings. The aim was to compare Fitbit One and Jawbone UP estimates of steps, moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA), and sedentary behavior with data from the ActiGraph GT3X+ accelerometer in a free-living context. Thirty-two participants were recruited using convenience sampling; 29 provided valid data for this study (female: 90%, 26/29; age: mean 39.6, SD 11.0 years). On two occasions for 7 days each, participants wore an ActiGraph GT3X+ accelerometer on their right hip and either a hip-worn Fitbit One (n=14) or wrist-worn Jawbone UP (n=15) activity tracker. Daily estimates of steps and very active minutes were derived from the Fitbit One (n=135 days) and steps, active time, and longest idle time from the Jawbone UP (n=154 days). Daily estimates of steps, MVPA, and longest sedentary bout were derived from the corresponding days of ActiGraph data. Correlation coefficients and Bland-Altman plots with examination of systematic bias were used to assess convergent validity and agreement between the devices and the ActiGraph. Cohen's kappa was used to assess the agreement between each device and the ActiGraph for classification of active versus inactive (≥10,000 steps per day and ≥30 min/day of MVPA) comparable with public health guidelines. Correlations with ActiGraph estimates of steps and MVPA ranged between .72 and .90 for Fitbit One and .56 and .75 for Jawbone UP. Compared with ActiGraph estimates, both devices overestimated daily steps by 8% (Fitbit One) and 14% (Jawbone UP). However, mean differences were larger for daily MVPA (Fitbit One: underestimated by 46%; Jawbone UP: overestimated by 50%). There was

  1. Energy regulation in context: Free-living female arctic ground squirrels modulate the relationship between thyroid hormones and activity among life history stages.

    Wilsterman, Kathryn; Buck, C Loren; Barnes, Brian M; Williams, Cory T

    2015-09-01

    Thyroid hormones (THs), key regulators of lipid and carbohydrate metabolism, are likely modulators of energy allocation within and among animal life history stages. Despite their role in modulating metabolism, few studies have investigated whether THs vary among life history stages in free-living animals or if they exhibit stage-specific relationships to total energy expenditure and activity levels. We measured plasma total triiodothyronine (tT3) and thyroxine (tT4) at four, discrete life history stages of female arctic ground squirrels from two different populations in northern Alaska to test whether plasma THs correlate with life history stage-specific changes in metabolic rate and energy demand. We also tested whether THs explained individual variation in aboveground activity levels within life history stages. T3 peaked during lactation and was lowest during pre-hibernation fattening, consistent with known changes in basal metabolism and core body temperature. In contrast, T4 was elevated shortly after terminating hibernation but remained low and stable across other life-history stages in the active season. THs were consistently higher in the population that spent more time above-ground but the relationship between THs and activity varied among life history stages. T3 was positively correlated with activity only during lactation (r(2)=0.50) whereas T4 was positively correlated with activity immediately following lactation (r(2)=0.48) and during fattening (r(2)=0.53). Our results support the hypothesis that THs are an important modulator of basal metabolism but also suggest that the relationship between THs and activity varies among life history stages. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Environmental, dietary, and hormonal factors in the regulation of seasonal breeding in free-living female Indian rose-ringed parakeets (Psittacula krameri).

    Sailaja, R; Kotak, V C; Sharp, P J; Schmedemann, R; Haase, E

    1988-12-01

    The roles of environmental, dietary, and hormonal factors in the timing of seasonal breeding were assessed in free-living female Indian rose-ringed parakeets, Psittacula krameri, in northwest India (22 degrees 2'N, 73 degrees E). The ovaries and oviducts began to enlarge in January, were fully developed in February, and began to regress in March. During this time there was no significant change in the concentration of plasma luteinizing hormone (LH) or estradiol. The concentration of plasma LH decreased (P less than 0.01) at the end of the breeding season. Pair bond formation occurred between September and December and was associated with an increase in levels of plasma LH but no change in plasma estradiol. Concentrations of plasma testosterone (T) and 5 alpha-dihydrotestosterone (5 alpha-DHT) did not vary significantly during the year and were similar to those in males except for higher values of 5 alpha-DHT and lower values of T during the pre- and postbreeding periods, respectively. The similar levels of plasma androgens in both sexes may be related to the equal roles that both sexes play in the defence of their nest holes. An analysis of crop sac contents showed that the birds fed chiefly on pigeon peas (Cajanus cajan) during the breeding season and on cereal grains at other times of the year. It is suggested that pigeon peas provide the extra nutrients, including calcium, required for egg production. Since pigeon peas ripen between November and March, the production of the crop may play a role in the timing of seasonal breeding. A further factor appears to be competition for nest sites. By breeding in winter, the parakeet avoids competing with other species which nest in holes.

  3. Rickettsia sp. strain colombianensi (Rickettsiales: Rickettsiaceae): a new proposed Rickettsia detected in Amblyomma dissimile (Acari: Ixodidae) from iguanas and free-living larvae ticks from vegetation.

    Miranda, Jorge; Portillo, Aránzazu; Oteo, José A; Mattar, Salim

    2012-07-01

    From January to December 2009, 55 Amblyomma dissimile (Koch) ticks removed from iguanas in the municipality of Monteria and 3,114 ticks [458 Amblyomma sp. larvae, 2,636 Rhipicephalus microplus (Canestrini) larvae and 20 Amblyomma sp. nymphs] collected over vegetation in Los Cordobas were included in the study. The ticks were pooled into groups from which DNA was extracted. For initial screening of Rickettsia sp., each pool was analyzed by gltA real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Positive pools were further studied using gltA, ompA, and ompB conventional PCR assays. Sequencing and phylogenetic analysis were also conducted. Rickettsial DNA was found in 28 pools of ticks (16 A. dissimile pools and 12 free-living larvae pools) out of 113 (24.7%) using real-time PCR. The same 28 pools were also positive using conventional PCR assays aimed to amplify gltA, ompA, and ompB. For each gene analyzed, PCR products obtained from 4/28 pools (two pools of A. dissimile, one pool of Amblyomma sp. larvae and one pool of Rh. microplus larvae) were randomly chosen and sequenced twice. Nucleotide sequences generated were identical to each other for each of the rickettsial genes gltA, ompA, and ompB, and showed 99.4, 95.6, and 96.4% identity with those of Rickettsia tamurae. They were deposited in the GenBank database under accession numbers JF905456, JF905458, and JF905457, respectively. In conclusion, we present the first molecular evidence of a novel Rickettsia (Rickettsia sp. strain Colombianensi) infecting A. dissimile ticks collected from iguanas, and also Rh. microplus and unspeciated Amblyomma larvae from vegetation in Colombia.

  4. Maternal gestational cortisol and testosterone are associated with trade-offs in offspring sex and number in a free-living rodent (Urocitellus richardsonii.

    Calen P Ryan

    Full Text Available The adaptive manipulation of offspring sex and number has been of considerable interest to ecologists and evolutionary biologists. The physiological mechanisms that translate maternal condition and environmental cues into adaptive responses in offspring sex and number, however, remain obscure. In mammals, research into the mechanisms responsible for adaptive sex allocation has focused on two major endocrine axes: the hypothalamic pituitary adrenal (HPA axis and glucocorticoids, and the hypothalamic pituitary gonadal (HPG axis and sex steroids, particularly testosterone. While stress-induced activation of the HPA axis provides an intuitive model for sex ratio and litter size adjustment, plasma glucocorticoids exist in both bound and free fractions, and may be acting indirectly, for example by affecting plasma glucose levels. Furthermore, in female mammals, activation of the HPA axis stimulates the secretion of adrenal testosterone in addition to glucocorticoids (GCs. To begin to untangle these physiological mechanisms influencing offspring sex and number, we simultaneously examined fecal glucocorticoid metabolites, free and bound plasma cortisol, free testosterone, and plasma glucose concentration during both gestation and lactation in a free-living rodent (Urocitellus richardsonii. We also collected data on offspring sex and litter size from focal females and from a larger study population. Consistent with previous work in this population, we found evidence for a trade-off between offspring sex and number, as well as positive and negative correlations between glucocorticoids and sex ratio and litter size, respectively, during gestation (but not lactation. We also observed a negative relationship between testosterone and litter size during gestation (but not lactation, but no effect of glucose on either sex ratio or litter size. Our findings highlight the importance of binding proteins, cross-talk between endocrine systems, and temporal windows

  5. Comparison of uniaxial and triaxial accelerometry in the assessment of physical activity among adolescents under free-living conditions: the HELENA study

    Vanhelst Jérémy

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Different types of devices are available and the choice about which to use depends on various factors: cost, physical characteristics, performance, and the validity and intra- and interinstrument reliability. Given the large number of studies that have used uniaxial or triaxial devices, it is of interest to know whether the different devices give similar information about PA levels and patterns. The aim of this study was to compare physical activity (PA levels and patterns obtained simultaneously by triaxial accelerometry and uniaxial accelerometry in adolescents in free-living conditions. Methods Sixty-two participants, aged 13-16 years, were recruited in this ancillary study, which is a part of the Healthy Lifestyle in Europe by Nutrition in Adolescence (HELENA. All participants wore a uniaxial accelerometer (ActiGraph GT1M®, Pensacola, FL and a triaxial accelerometer (RT3®, Stayhealthy, Monrovia, CA simultaneously for 7 days. The patterns were calculated by converting accelerometer data output as a percentage of time spent at sedentary, light, moderate, and vigorous PA per day. Analysis of output data from the two accelerometers were assessed by two different tests: Equivalence Test and Bland & Altman method. Results The concordance correlation coefficient between the data from the triaxial accelerometer and uniaxial accelerometer at each intensity level was superior to 0.95. The ANOVA test showed a significant difference for the first three lower intensities while no significant difference was found for vigorous intensity. The difference between data obtained with the triaxial accelerometer and the uniaxial monitor never exceeded 2.1% and decreased as PA level increased. The Bland & Altman method showed good agreement between data obtained between the both accelerometers (p Conclusions Uniaxial and triaxial accelerometers do not differ in their measurement of PA in population studies, and either could be used in such

  6. Health assessment of free-living eastern box turtles (Terrapene carolina carolina) in and around the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore 1996-2011.

    Adamovicz, Laura; Bronson, Ellen; Barrett, Kevin; Deem, Sharon L

    2015-03-01

    Health data for free-living eastern box turtles (Terrapene carolina carolina) at the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore were analyzed. One hundred and eighteen turtles were captured on or near zoo grounds over the course of 15 yr (1996-2011), with recapture of many individuals leading to 208 total evaluations. Of the 118 individuals, 61 were male, 50 were female, and 7 were of undetermined sex. Of the 208 captures, 188 were healthy, and 20 were sick or injured. Complete health evaluations were performed on 30 turtles with physical examination records, complete blood counts (CBCs), and plasma biochemistry profiles. Eight animals were sampled more than once, yielding 40 total samples for complete health evaluations of these 30 individuals. The 40 samples were divided into healthy (N=29) and sick (N=11) groups based on clinical findings on physical examination. Samples from healthy animals were further divided into male (N=17) and female (N= 12) groups. CBC and biochemistry profile parameters were compared between sick and healthy groups and between healthy males and females. Sick turtles had lower albumin, globulin, total protein (TP), calcium, phosphorous, sodium, and potassium than healthy animals. Sick turtles also had higher heterophil to lymphocyte ratios. Healthy female turtles had higher leukocyte count, eosinophil count, total solids, TP, globulin, cholesterol, calcium, and phosphorous than healthy males. Banked plasma from all 40 samples was tested for antibodies to Mycoplasma agassizii and Mycoplasma testudineum via enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. One sample from a clinically healthy female was antibody positive for M. agassizii; none were positive for M. testudineum. This study provides descriptive health data for eastern box turtles and CBC and biochemistry profile information for T. carolina carolina at and near the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore. It also reports low serologic evidence of exposure to mycoplasmosis.

  7. Comparative phototoxicity of nanoparticulate and bulk ZnO to a free-living nematode Caenorhabditis elegans: The importance of illumination mode and primary particle size

    Ma, H.; Kabengi, N.J.; Bertsch, P.M.; Unrine, J.M.; Glenn, T.C.; Williams, P.L.

    2011-01-01

    The present study evaluated phototoxicity of nanoparticulate ZnO and bulk-ZnO under natural sunlight (NSL) versus ambient artificial laboratory light (AALL) illumination to a free-living nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. Phototoxicity of nano-ZnO and bulk-ZnO was largely dependent on illumination method as 2-h exposure under NSL caused significantly greater mortality in C. elegans than under AALL. This phototoxicity was closely related to photocatalytic reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation by the ZnO particles as indicated by concomitant methylene blue photodegradation. Both materials caused mortality in C. elegans under AALL during 24-h exposure although neither degraded methylene blue, suggesting mechanisms of toxicity other than photocatalytic ROS generation were involved. Particle dissolution of ZnO did not appear to play an important role in the toxicity observed in this study. Nano-ZnO showed greater phototoxicity than bulk-ZnO despite their similar size of aggregates, suggesting primary particle size is more important than aggregate size in determining phototoxicity. - Highlights: → Phototoxicity of nano- or bulk-ZnO was enhanced by natural sunlight illumination. → This phototoxicity was well-correlated to photocatalytic ROS generation. → Toxicity of ZnO particles not related to photocatalytic ROS generation was also observed. → Nano-ZnO showed greater phototoxicity than bulk-ZnO due to its greater total surface area per unit mass. → Primary particle size appeared to be more important than aggregate size in determining phototoxicity. - Phototoxicity of nanoparticulate and bulk ZnO was greatly enhanced by natural sunlight illumination compared to artificial laboratory light illumination.

  8. Seasonal differences in the testicular transcriptome profile of free-living European beavers (Castor fiber L. determined by the RNA-Seq method.

    Iwona Bogacka

    Full Text Available The European beaver (Castor fiber L. is an important free-living rodent that inhabits Eurasian temperate forests. Beavers are often referred to as ecosystem engineers because they create or change existing habitats, enhance biodiversity and prepare the environment for diverse plant and animal species. Beavers are protected in most European Union countries, but their genomic background remains unknown. In this study, gene expression patterns in beaver testes and the variations in genetic expression in breeding and non-breeding seasons were determined by high-throughput transcriptome sequencing. Paired-end sequencing in the Illumina HiSeq 2000 sequencer produced a total of 373.06 million of high-quality reads. De novo assembly of contigs yielded 130,741 unigenes with an average length of 1,369.3 nt, N50 value of 1,734, and average GC content of 46.51%. A comprehensive analysis of the testicular transcriptome revealed more than 26,000 highly expressed unigenes which exhibited the highest homology with Rattus norvegicus and Ictidomys tridecemlineatus genomes. More than 8,000 highly expressed genes were found to be involved in fundamental biological processes, cellular components or molecular pathways. The study also revealed 42 genes whose regulation differed between breeding and non-breeding seasons. During the non-breeding period, the expression of 37 genes was up-regulated, and the expression of 5 genes was down-regulated relative to the breeding season. The identified genes encode molecules which are involved in signaling transduction, DNA repair, stress responses, inflammatory processes, metabolism and steroidogenesis. Our results pave the way for further research into season-dependent variations in beaver testes.

  9. Comparative phototoxicity of nanoparticulate and bulk ZnO to a free-living nematode Caenorhabditis elegans: The importance of illumination mode and primary particle size

    Ma, H., E-mail: mah77@uga.edu [Department of Environmental Health Science, College of Public Health, University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30602 (United States); Kabengi, N.J.; Bertsch, P.M.; Unrine, J.M. [Department of Plant and Soil Sciences, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY 40546 (United States); Glenn, T.C.; Williams, P.L. [Department of Environmental Health Science, College of Public Health, University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30602 (United States)

    2011-06-15

    The present study evaluated phototoxicity of nanoparticulate ZnO and bulk-ZnO under natural sunlight (NSL) versus ambient artificial laboratory light (AALL) illumination to a free-living nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. Phototoxicity of nano-ZnO and bulk-ZnO was largely dependent on illumination method as 2-h exposure under NSL caused significantly greater mortality in C. elegans than under AALL. This phototoxicity was closely related to photocatalytic reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation by the ZnO particles as indicated by concomitant methylene blue photodegradation. Both materials caused mortality in C. elegans under AALL during 24-h exposure although neither degraded methylene blue, suggesting mechanisms of toxicity other than photocatalytic ROS generation were involved. Particle dissolution of ZnO did not appear to play an important role in the toxicity observed in this study. Nano-ZnO showed greater phototoxicity than bulk-ZnO despite their similar size of aggregates, suggesting primary particle size is more important than aggregate size in determining phototoxicity. - Highlights: > Phototoxicity of nano- or bulk-ZnO was enhanced by natural sunlight illumination. > This phototoxicity was well-correlated to photocatalytic ROS generation. > Toxicity of ZnO particles not related to photocatalytic ROS generation was also observed. > Nano-ZnO showed greater phototoxicity than bulk-ZnO due to its greater total surface area per unit mass. > Primary particle size appeared to be more important than aggregate size in determining phototoxicity. - Phototoxicity of nanoparticulate and bulk ZnO was greatly enhanced by natural sunlight illumination compared to artificial laboratory light illumination.

  10. The passive yet successful way of planktonic life: genomic and experimental analysis of the ecology of a free-living polynucleobacter population.

    Martin W Hahn

    Full Text Available The bacterial taxon Polynucleobacter necessarius subspecies asymbioticus represents a group of planktonic freshwater bacteria with cosmopolitan and ubiquitous distribution in standing freshwater habitats. These bacteria comprise <1% to 70% (on average about 20% of total bacterioplankton cells in various freshwater habitats. The ubiquity of this taxon was recently explained by intra-taxon ecological diversification, i.e. specialization of lineages to specific environmental conditions; however, details on specific adaptations are not known. Here we investigated by means of genomic and experimental analyses the ecological adaptation of a persistent population dwelling in a small acidic pond.The investigated population (F10 lineage contributed on average 11% to total bacterioplankton in the pond during the vegetation periods (ice-free period, usually May to November. Only a low degree of genetic diversification of the population could be revealed. These bacteria are characterized by a small genome size (2.1 Mb, a relatively small number of genes involved in transduction of environmental signals, and the lack of motility and quorum sensing. Experiments indicated that these bacteria live as chemoorganotrophs by mainly utilizing low-molecular-weight substrates derived from photooxidation of humic substances.Evolutionary genome streamlining resulted in a highly passive lifestyle so far only known among free-living bacteria from pelagic marine taxa dwelling in environmentally stable nutrient-poor off-shore systems. Surprisingly, such a lifestyle is also successful in a highly dynamic and nutrient-richer environment such as the water column of the investigated pond, which was undergoing complete mixis and pronounced stratification in diurnal cycles. Obviously, metabolic and ecological versatility is not a prerequisite for long-lasting establishment of abundant bacterial populations under highly dynamic environmental conditions. Caution should be exercised

  11. Contrasting diversity of testate amoebae communities in Sphagnum and brown-moss dominated patches in relation to shell counts.

    Lizoňová, Zuzana; Horsák, Michal

    2017-04-01

    Ecological studies of peatland testate amoebae are generally based on totals of 150 individuals per sample. However, the suitability of this standard has never been assessed for alkaline habitats such as spring fens. We explored the differences in testate amoeba diversity between Sphagnum and brown-moss microhabitats at a mire site with a highly diversified moss layer which reflects the small-scale heterogeneity in groundwater chemistry. Relationships between sampling efficiency and sample completeness were explored using individual-based species accumulation curves and the effort required to gain an extra species was assessed. Testate amoeba diversity differed substantially between microhabitats, with brown mosses hosting on average twice as many species and requiring greater shell totals to reach comparable sample analysis efficiency as for Sphagnum. Thus, for samples from alkaline conditions an increase in shell totals would be required and even an overall doubling up to 300 individuals might be considered for reliable community description. Our small-scale data are likely not robust enough to provide an ultimate solution for the optimization of shell totals. However, the results proved that testate amoebae communities from acidic and alkaline environments differ sharply in both species richness and composition and they might call for different methodological approaches. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  12. SSU rRNA reveals a sequential increase in shell complexity among the euglyphid testate amoebae (Rhizaria: Euglyphida)

    Lara, Enrique; Heger, Thierry J; Mitchell, Edward A D

    2007-01-01

    The existing data on the molecular phylogeny of filose testate amoebae from order Euglyphida has revealed contradictions between traditional morphological classification and SSU rRNA phylogeny and, moreover, the position of several important genera remained unknown. We therefore carried out a stu...

  13. Effectiveness of a Self-monitoring Device for Urinary Sodium-to-Potassium Ratio on Dietary Improvement in Free-Living Adults: a Randomized Controlled Trial.

    Iwahori, Toshiyuki; Ueshima, Hirotsugu; Ohgami, Naoto; Yamashita, Hideyuki; Miyagawa, Naoko; Kondo, Keiko; Torii, Sayuki; Yoshita, Katsushi; Shiga, Toshikazu; Ohkubo, Takayoshi; Arima, Hisatomi; Miura, Katsuyuki

    2018-01-05

    Reducing the urinary sodium-to-potassium ratio is important for reducing both blood pressure and risk of cardiovascular disease. Among free-living Japanese individuals, we carried out a randomized trial to clarify the effect of lifestyle modification for lowering urinary sodium-to-potassium ratio using a self-monitoring device. This was an open, prospective, parallel randomized, controlled trial. Ninety-two individuals were recruited from Japanese volunteers. Participants were randomly allocated into intervention and control groups. A month-long dietary intervention on self-monitoring urinary sodium-to-potassium ratio was carried out using monitors (HEU-001F, OMRON Healthcare Co., Ltd., Kyoto, Japan). All participants had brief dietary education and received a leaflet as usual care. Monitors were handed out to the intervention group, but not to the control group. The intervention group was asked to measure at least one spot urine sodium-to-potassium ratio daily, and advised to lower their sodium-to-potassium ratio toward the target of less than 1. Outcomes included changes in 24-hour urinary sodium-to-potassium ratio, sodium excretion, potassium excretion, blood pressure, and body weight in both groups. Mean measurement frequency of monitoring was 2.8 times/day during the intervention. Changes in urinary sodium-to-potassium ratio were -0.55 in the intervention group and -0.06 in the control group (P = 0.088); respective sodium excretion changes were -18.5 mmol/24 hours and -8.7 mmol/24 hours (P = 0.528); and corresponding potassium excretion was 2.6 mmol/24 hours and -1.5 mmol/24 hours (P = 0.300). No significant reductions were observed in either blood pressure or body weight after the intervention. Providing the device to self-monitor a sodium-to-potassium ratio did not achieve the targeted reduction of the ratio in "pure self-management" settings, indicating further needs to study an effective method to enhance the synergetic effect of dietary programs and self

  14. Effectiveness of a Self-monitoring Device for Urinary Sodium-to-Potassium Ratio on Dietary Improvement in Free-Living Adults: a Randomized Controlled Trial

    Toshiyuki Iwahori

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: Reducing the urinary sodium-to-potassium ratio is important for reducing both blood pressure and risk of cardiovascular disease. Among free-living Japanese individuals, we carried out a randomized trial to clarify the effect of lifestyle modification for lowering urinary sodium-to-potassium ratio using a self-monitoring device. Methods: This was an open, prospective, parallel randomized, controlled trial. Ninety-two individuals were recruited from Japanese volunteers. Participants were randomly allocated into intervention and control groups. A month-long dietary intervention on self-monitoring urinary sodium-to-potassium ratio was carried out using monitors (HEU-001F, OMRON Healthcare Co., Ltd., Kyoto, Japan. All participants had brief dietary education and received a leaflet as usual care. Monitors were handed out to the intervention group, but not to the control group. The intervention group was asked to measure at least one spot urine sodium-to-potassium ratio daily, and advised to lower their sodium-to-potassium ratio toward the target of less than 1. Outcomes included changes in 24-hour urinary sodium-to-potassium ratio, sodium excretion, potassium excretion, blood pressure, and body weight in both groups. Results: Mean measurement frequency of monitoring was 2.8 times/day during the intervention. Changes in urinary sodium-to-potassium ratio were −0.55 in the intervention group and −0.06 in the control group (P = 0.088; respective sodium excretion changes were −18.5 mmol/24 hours and −8.7 mmol/24 hours (P = 0.528; and corresponding potassium excretion was 2.6 mmol/24 hours and −1.5 mmol/24 hours (P = 0.300. No significant reductions were observed in either blood pressure or body weight after the intervention. Conclusions: Providing the device to self-monitor a sodium-to-potassium ratio did not achieve the targeted reduction of the ratio in “pure self-management” settings, indicating further needs to study an

  15. Comparison of wrist-worn Fitbit Flex and waist-worn ActiGraph for measuring steps in free-living adults.

    Anne H Y Chu

    Full Text Available Accelerometers are commonly used to assess physical activity. Consumer activity trackers have become increasingly popular today, such as the Fitbit. This study aimed to compare the average number of steps per day using the wrist-worn Fitbit Flex and waist-worn ActiGraph (wGT3X-BT in free-living conditions.104 adult participants (n = 35 males; n = 69 females were asked to wear a Fitbit Flex and an ActiGraph concurrently for 7 days. Daily step counts were used to classify inactive (<10,000 steps and active (≥10,000 steps days, which is one of the commonly used physical activity guidelines to maintain health. Proportion of agreement between physical activity categorizations from ActiGraph and Fitbit Flex was assessed. Statistical analyses included Spearman's rho, intraclass correlation (ICC, median absolute percentage error (MAPE, Kappa statistics, and Bland-Altman plots. Analyses were performed among all participants, by each step-defined daily physical activity category and gender.The median average steps/day recorded by Fitbit Flex and ActiGraph were 10193 and 8812, respectively. Strong positive correlations and agreement were found for all participants, both genders, as well as daily physical activity categories (Spearman's rho: 0.76-0.91; ICC: 0.73-0.87. The MAPE was: 15.5% (95% confidence interval [CI]: 5.8-28.1% for overall steps, 16.9% (6.8-30.3% vs. 15.1% (4.5-27.3% in males and females, and 20.4% (8.7-35.9% vs. 9.6% (1.0-18.4% during inactive days and active days. Bland-Altman plot indicated a median overestimation of 1300 steps/day by the Fitbit Flex in all participants. Fitbit Flex and ActiGraph respectively classified 51.5% and 37.5% of the days as active (Kappa: 0.66.There were high correlations and agreement in steps between Fitbit Flex and ActiGraph. However, findings suggested discrepancies in steps between devices. This imposed a challenge that needs to be considered when using Fibit Flex in research and health promotion

  16. Generation of a rabbit single-chain fragment variable (scFv) antibody for specific detection of Bradyrhizobium sp. DOA9 in both free-living and bacteroid forms.

    Vu, Nguyen Xuan; Pruksametanan, Natcha; Srila, Witsanu; Yuttavanichakul, Watcharin; Teamtisong, Kamonluck; Teaumroong, Neung; Boonkerd, Nantakorn; Tittabutr, Panlada; Yamabhai, Montarop

    2017-01-01

    A simple and reliable method for the detection of specific nitrogen-fixing bacteria in both free-living and bacteroid forms is essential for the development and application of biofertilizer. Traditionally, a polyclonal antibody generated from an immunized rabbit was used for detection. However, the disadvantages of using a polyclonal antibody include limited supply and cross-reactivity to related bacterial strains. This is the first report on the application of phage display technology for the generation of a rabbit recombinant monoclonal antibody for specific detection and monitoring of nitrogen-fixing bacteria in both free-living form and in plant nodules. Bradyrhizobium sp. DOA9, a broad host range soil bacteria, originally isolated from the root nodules of Aeschynomene americana in Thailand was used as a model in this study. A recombinant single-chain fragment variable (scFv) antibody library was constructed from the spleen of a rabbit immunized with DOA9. After three rounds of biopanning, one specific phage-displayed scFv antibody, designated bDOA9rb8, was identified. Specific binding of this antibody was confirmed by phage enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (phage ELISA). The phage antibody could bind specifically to DOA9 in both free-living cells (pure culture) and bacteroids inside plant nodules. In addition to phage ELISA, specific and robust immunofluorescence staining of both free-living and bacteroid forms could also be observed by confocal-immunofluorescence imaging, without cross-reactivity with other tested bradyrhizobial strains. Moreover, specific binding of free scFv to DOA9 was also demonstrated by ELISA. This recombinant antibody can also be used for the study of the molecular mechanism of plant-microbe interactions in the future.

  17. Spontaneous emergence of large-scale cell cycle synchronization in amoeba colonies

    Segota, Igor; Boulet, Laurent; Franck, David; Franck, Carl

    2014-01-01

    Unicellular eukaryotic amoebae Dictyostelium discoideum are generally believed to grow in their vegetative state as single cells until starvation, when their collective aspect emerges and they differentiate to form a multicellular slime mold. While major efforts continue to be aimed at their starvation-induced social aspect, our understanding of population dynamics and cell cycle in the vegetative growth phase has remained incomplete. Here we show that cell populations grown on a substrate spontaneously synchronize their cell cycles within several hours. These collective population-wide cell cycle oscillations span millimeter length scales and can be completely suppressed by washing away putative cell-secreted signals, implying signaling by means of a diffusible growth factor or mitogen. These observations give strong evidence for collective proliferation behavior in the vegetative state. (paper)

  18. Amoeba-like self-oscillating polymeric fluids with autonomous sol-gel transition.

    Onoda, Michika; Ueki, Takeshi; Tamate, Ryota; Shibayama, Mitsuhiro; Yoshida, Ryo

    2017-07-13

    In the field of polymer science, many kinds of polymeric material systems that show a sol-gel transition have been created. However, most systems are unidirectional stimuli-responsive systems that require physical signals such as a change in temperature. Here, we report on the design of a block copolymer solution that undergoes autonomous and periodic sol-gel transition under constant conditions without any on-off switching through external stimuli. The amplitude of this self-oscillation of the viscosity is about 2,000 mPa s. We also demonstrate an intermittent forward motion of a droplet of the polymer solution synchronized with the autonomous sol-gel transition. This polymer solution bears the potential to become the base for a type of slime-like soft robot that can transform its shape kaleidoscopically and move autonomously, which is associated with the living amoeba that moves forward by a repeated sol-gel transition.

  19. Giants among larges: how gigantism impacts giant virus entry into amoebae.

    Rodrigues, Rodrigo Araújo Lima; Abrahão, Jônatas Santos; Drumond, Betânia Paiva; Kroon, Erna Geessien

    2016-06-01

    The proposed order Megavirales comprises the nucleocytoplasmic large DNA viruses (NCLDV), infecting a wide range of hosts. Over time, they co-evolved with different host cells, developing various strategies to penetrate them. Mimiviruses and other giant viruses enter cells through phagocytosis, while Marseillevirus and other large viruses explore endocytosis and macropinocytosis. These differing strategies might reflect the evolution of those viruses. Various scenarios have been proposed for the origin and evolution of these viruses, presenting one of the most enigmatic issues to surround these microorganisms. In this context, we believe that giant viruses evolved independently by massive gene/size gain, exploring the phagocytic pathway of entry into amoebas. In response to gigantism, hosts developed mechanisms to evade these parasites. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Reaching an entrepreneurial management system of amoebas. A qualitative insight into the European experiences

    Urban Wiesław

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available The aim of the study is an assessment of the Amoeba Management System (AMS introduction advancements in some European companies. The study takes the practically focused research approach. The approaches, achievements and phases whilst introducing the AMS principles by companies are observed and critically assessed. First insight into the challenges of AMS introduction is taken basing on critical study of the literature output. The scientific studies and managerial publications are taken into consideration. The empirical part of the study is based on the qualitative approach. A multiple case study methodology is employed. The research objects are three companies, one of them operates in Sweden, the next two in Poland. Each of them have different experiences in AMS implementation, they also manifest different management styles and habits. The study demonstrates that AMS is a very prospective management methodology which can support companies in employees commitment during their journey towards operational excellence. The analysis results show different motivations for AMS introduction as well as different development paths, these are harmonized with different management styles in companies and culture occurring in countries. The study is particularly valuable because this is one of the first empirical investigations of AMS implementation in European companies. In the field of theory the study proposes the four level scale for amoebas system maturity. This scale allows to classify companies following AMS principles and, at the same time, this scale is also the kind of path of AMS implementation. The study points out basic tools for companies which support AMS implementation. These tools are already known in management literature, but experience of investigated companies shows that they are fundamental for successful AMS implementation.

  1. Check-list of microscopic protosteloid amoebae from the Southwest of Europe

    Aguilar, María

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available A biodiversity survey for protosteloid amoebae was carried out in Spain, Portugal and France between 2005 and 2010. Samples were collected from three different microhabitats – aerial litter, ground litter, and bark of living plants – in a total of 97 localities. As result 26 to 28 species out of the 33 species of microscopic protosteloid amoebae described to date were recorded. An annotated list that comprises all available data about these organisms from this part of the world, a key to the species, comments on the morphology of the sporocarps and the trophic stages is presented. Photomicrographs of the fruiting bodies of most species, and distribution maps are also included.

    Se ha realizado un estudio de la biodiversidad de las amebas protos - teloides en España, Portugal y Francia entre 2005 y 2010. Las muestras se recolectaron en tres microhábitats diferentes –hojarasca aérea, hojarasca del suelo y corteza de plantas vivas– en un total de 97 localidades. Como resultado se encontraron entre 26 y 28 especies de las 33 especies de amebas protosteloides microscópicas descritas. Se presenta una lista comentada que contiene todos los datos disponibles sobre estos organismos en esta parte del mundo, una clave de las especies y comentarios sobre la morfología de los esporocarpos y de los estados tróficos. También se incluyen fotomicrografías de los cuerpos fructíferos de la mayoría de las especies y mapas de distribución.

  2. Holocene environmental changes in southern Kamchatka, Far Eastern Russia, inferred from a pollen and testate amoebae peat succession record

    Klimaschewski, A.; Barnekow, L.; Bennett, K. D.; Andreev, A. A.; Andrén, E.; Bobrov, A. A.; Hammarlund, D.

    2015-11-01

    High resolution palaeoenvironmental records in Far-Eastern Russia are rare, and the Kamchatka Peninsula is among the least studied areas of the region. This paper describes a record spanning the last ca. 11,000 yr, obtained from a bog in the southern part of Kamchatka. The radiocarbon dated core was analysed for pollen, testate amoebae, charcoal and loss-on-ignition (LOI). The vegetation during the early Holocene was dominated by grasses (Poaceae), birch (Betula) and heath (Ericaceae p. p.). Around 10,300 cal yr BP there was a substantial change in the vegetation cover to shrub alder (Alnus viridis s.l.) stands with sedges and ferns (Polypodiophyta) as well as herbs such as meadow rue (Thalictrum) in the understory. In the surroundings of Utka peatlands started to form. The variations in the vegetation cover were most probably caused by climatic changes. At the beginning of sediment accumulation, before 10,300 cal yr BP, the composition of the vegetation points to cooler summers and/or decreased annual precipitation. Around 10,300 cal yr BP, changes in vegetation occurred due to rising temperatures and/or changed water regimes. Increased abundancies of dry indicating testate amoebae after 9100 cal yr BP point to intermediate to dry soil conditions. Between 8600 and 7700 cal yr BP tree alder (Alnus incana) was widely spread at the site which probably indicates optimal environmental conditions. The tephra layer at 381-384.5 cm (ca. 8500 cal yr BP) produces a strong impact on the testate amoebae assemblages. At 7700 cal yr BP there was a sudden drop of A. incana in the local vegetation. From this time on, A. incana and also A. viridis decrease continuously whereas Betula gradually increases. The upper part of the sequence (after 6300 cal yr BP) shows higher abundancies of meadowsweet (Filipendula) and sweet gale (Myrica) pollen. After 6300 cal yr BP, changes in testate amoebae demonstrate variable soil moisture conditions at the site. Between 3700 and 1800 cal yr BP

  3. Pentastomiasis and other parasitic zoonoses from reptiles and amphibians.

    Pantchev, Nikola; Tappe, Dennis

    2011-01-01

    Reptiles are growing in popularity as pets.The colonization of reptiles and amphibians by parasites and the resulting disease conditions are the most common problems seen in captive animals.This review focuses on pentastomiasis and sparganosis, important parasitic zoonoses of reptiles and amphibians, respectively, and free living-amoebae. Humans are suitable accidental hosts for some pentastomid species (particularly Armillifer and Porocephalus). In geographical areas with special ethnics, such as in West and Central Africa, and East Asia, 8-45% of the human population can be affected. Usually the larvae are coincidentally found during abdominal surgeries. However, fatalities have been described. Extreme caution is necessary when handling infected reptiles. Ocular or cerebral sparganosis is not uncommonly found in humans in East Asia. This disease is caused by spargana, tapeworm larvae (plerocercoids) of Spirometra sp. The infection occurs when uncooked meat from reptiles or amphibians is applied to wounds or eyes and the parasites migrate directly to human tissue, or by consumption of contaminated food or water. As a consequence of the reptile's predatory behaviour, the full spectrum of endo- and ectoparasites from potential prey animals can be found as transiting parasites in the intestinal tract, e. g. Hymenolepis nana, Cryptosporidium (C.) muris, C parvum or Capillaria hepatica. Occasionally, free-living amoebae are also found in reptile faeces (Acanthamoeba, Naegleria, Hartmanella, Vahlkampfia or Echinamoeba sp.).

  4. Growth regulation of Legionella Pneumophila in biofilms and amoebae; Wachstumsregulation von Legionella Pneumophila in Biofilmen und Amoeben

    Hilbi, H.

    2006-07-01

    This final report for the Swiss Federal Office of Energy (SFOE) presents the results of studies made on the regulation of the growth of Legionella Pneumophila bacteria in biofilms and amoebae. In a first project, the formation of biofilms by Legionella Pneumophila bacteria was analysed in static and dynamic systems using a complex growth medium. Under static and dynamic clinical and environmental conditions, the adherence of the biofilms on polystyrene tissue was studied. This was also examined under dynamic flow conditions. In a second part of the project, the regulation of growth of Legionella Pneumophila in amoebae was examined in that changes were made to the genome of the bacteria. The importance of the work for the de-activation of Legionella Pneumophila bacteria in biofilms is noted in the conclusions of the report.

  5. The Phanerozoic diversification of silica-cycling testate amoebae and its possible links to changes in terrestrial ecosystems

    Bosak, Tanja; Lara, Enrique; Mitchell, Edward A.D.

    2015-01-01

    The terrestrial cycling of Si is thought to have a large influence on the terrestrial and marine primary production, as well as the coupled biogeochemical cycles of Si and C. Biomineralization of silica is widespread among terrestrial eukaryotes such as plants, soil diatoms, freshwater sponges, silicifying flagellates and testate amoebae. Two major groups of testate (shelled) amoebae, arcellinids and euglyphids, produce their own silica particles to construct shells. The two are unrelated phylogenetically and acquired biomineralizing capabilities independently. Hyalosphenids, a group within arcellinids, are predators of euglyphids. We demonstrate that hyalosphenids can construct shells using silica scales mineralized by the euglyphids. Parsimony analyses of the current hyalosphenid phylogeny indicate that the ability to “steal” euglyphid scales is most likely ancestral in hyalosphenids, implying that euglyphids should be older than hyalosphenids. However, exactly when euglyphids arose is uncertain. Current fossil record contains unambiguous euglyphid fossils that are as old as 50 million years, but older fossils are scarce and difficult to interpret. Poor taxon sampling of euglyphids has also prevented the development of molecular clocks. Here, we present a novel molecular clock reconstruction for arcellinids and consider the uncertainties due to various previously used calibration points. The new molecular clock puts the origin of hyalosphenids in the early Carboniferous (∼370 mya). Notably, this estimate coincides with the widespread colonization of land by Si-accumulating plants, suggesting possible links between the evolution of Arcellinid testate amoebae and the expansion of terrestrial habitats rich in organic matter and bioavailable Si. PMID:26734499

  6. An analysis of hereditary increase in frequency of cell mortality induced by external factors (Experiments on nuclear transplantation in amoebae)

    Bychkovskaya, I.B.; Ochinskaya, G.K.; Yudin, A.L.; AN SSSR, Leningrad. Inst. Tsitologii)

    1980-01-01

    By using nuclear transplantations in Amoeba proteus a study was made of a peculiar heritable effect, a stable increase in the frequency of cell mortality incuced by comparatively low doses of x radiation (50 Gy) or slight heating (29 0 C during 6 to 7 h). This effect differs qualitatively from the known radiation effects (reproductive death, lethal sectoring) by its being non-specific for radiation. In addition, the effect is saltatory appearing in 100% of the treated cells and the extent of its expression is not dependent on the dose of an inducing factor (at supra-threshold doses) and the period of time after treatment. It was found that (1) the hereditary changes in amoebae, unlike those resulting in reproductive death, are transmitted during intercellular transplantations both by the nucleus and cytoplasm of an altered cell; (2) the transfer of the character under test is accomplished by means of a certiin factor capable of shuttling between the nucleus and cytoplasm, (3) the effect is not necessarily a consequence of primary injury of nuclear structures and it may be induced by treatment of the cytoplasm of an enucleated cell renucleated then by the nucleus of a normal amoeba. In this respect, the effect under test differs also from the known types of hereditary post-radiation lethal effects which are commonly suggested to involve primary injury of the nucleus. Possible mechanisms of genetic control over the character tested are discussed. (author)

  7. Agreement between paper and pen visual analogue scales and a wristwatch-based electronic appetite rating system (PRO-Diary©), for continuous monitoring of free-living subjective appetite sensations in 7-10 year old children.

    Rumbold, P L S; Dodd-Reynolds, C J; Stevenson, E

    2013-10-01

    Electronic capture of free-living subjective appetite data can provide a more reliable alternative to traditional pen and paper visual analogue scales (P&P VAS), whilst reducing researcher workload. Consequently, the aim of this study was to explore the agreement between P&P VAS and a wristwatch-based electronic appetite rating system known as the PRO-Diary© technique, for monitoring free-living appetite sensations in 7-10 year old children. On one occasion, using a within-subject design, the 12 children (n=6 boys; n=6 girls) recorded their subjective appetite (hunger, prospective food consumption, and fullness), at two time points before lunch (11:30 and 12:00) and every 60 min thereafter until 21:00. The agreement between the P&P VAS and PRO-Diary© technique was explored using 95% limits of agreement and 95% confidence intervals (95% CI) calculated using the Bland and Altman (1986) technique. For hunger, prospective food consumption and fullness, the 95% limits of agreement were -1±25 mm (95% CI: lower limit -8mm; upper limit +6mm), 0±21 mm (95% CI: lower limit -6mm; upper limit +6mm) and -6±24 mm (95% CI: lower limit -14 mm; upper limit +1mm), respectively. Given the advantages associated with electronic data capture (inexpensive; integrated alarm; data easily downloaded), we conclude that the PRO-Diary© technique is an equivalent method to employ when continuously monitoring free-living appetite sensations in 7-10 year old children, but should not be used interchangeably with P&P VAS. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Flourish or flush: effects of simulated extreme rainfall events on Sphagnum-dwelling testate amoebae in a subarctic bog (Abisko, Sweden).

    Tsyganov, Andrey N; Keuper, Frida; Aerts, Rien; Beyens, Louis

    2013-01-01

    Extreme precipitation events are recognised as important drivers of ecosystem responses to climate change and can considerably affect high-latitude ombrotrophic bogs. Therefore, understanding the relationships between increased rainfall and the biotic components of these ecosystems is necessary for an estimation of climate change impacts. We studied overall effects of increased magnitude, intensity and frequency of rainfall on assemblages of Sphagnum-dwelling testate amoebae in a field climate manipulation experiment located in a relatively dry subarctic bog (Abisko, Sweden). The effects of the treatment were estimated using abundance, species diversity and structure of living and empty shell assemblages of testate amoebae in living and decaying layers of Sphagnum. Our results show that increased rainfall reduced the mean abundance and species richness of living testate amoebae. Besides, the treatment affected species structure of both living and empty shell assemblages, reducing proportions of hydrophilous species. The effects are counterintuitive as increased precipitation-related substrate moisture was expected to have opposite effects on testate amoeba assemblages in relatively dry biotopes. Therefore, we conclude that other rainfall-related factors such as increased infiltration rates and frequency of environmental disturbances can also affect testate amoeba assemblages in Sphagnum and that hydrophilous species are particularly sensitive to variation in these environmental variables.

  9. Hydroecology of Amazonian lacustrine Arcellinida (testate amoebae): A case study from Lake Quistococha, Peru.

    Patterson, R Timothy; Huckerby, Gail; Kelly, Thomas J; Swindles, Graeme T; Nasser, Nawaf A

    2015-10-01

    Organic rich sediments were obtained from seven core tops taken in Lake Quistococha, near the city of Iquitos in the Peruvian Amazon. Subsamples from 0 to 4cm depth in each core were analyzed under dissecting light microscopy to carry out the first investigation of Arcellinida (testate lobose amoebae) from a lacustrine environment in this ecologically important region. The fauna was characterized by a low diversity, low abundance community dominated by centropyxids. This fauna is similar to 'stressed' assemblages reported from temperate latitudes, except that test concentrations were two orders of magnitude lower than typical in temperate lakes. Principle arcellinidan stressors in Lake Quistococha likely include the low pH 4 conditions in the lake, and a general lack of suitable minerogenic material to construct tests in the organic rich lake substrate. The low pH conditions are the result of runoff and seepage of water high in dissolved organic carbon from the adjacent similarly low pH 4 terrestrial peatland. The dearth of minerogenic material is the result of the lake being isolated from riverine input for the past ∼2000 years, even during flooding events. Other limiting factors contributing to depressed arcellinidan populations may include nutrient supply, predation pressure, competition, and post-mortem taphonomic factors. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  10. Lateral gene exchanges shape the genomes of amoeba-resisting microorganisms

    Claire eBertelli

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Based on Darwin’s concept of the tree of life, vertical inheritance was thought to be dominant, and mutations, deletions and duplication were streaming the genomes of living organisms. In the current genomic era, increasing data indicated that both vertical and lateral gene inheritance interact in space and time to trigger genome evolution, particularly among microorganisms sharing a given ecological niche. As a paradigm to their diversity and their survival in a variety of cell types, intracellular microorganisms, and notably intracellular bacteria, were considered as less prone to lateral genetic exchanges. Such specialized microorganisms generally have a smaller gene repertoire because they do rely on their host’s factors for some basic regulatory and metabolic functions. Here we review events of lateral gene transfer (LGT that illustrate the genetic exchanges among intra-amoebal microorganisms or between the microorganism and its amoebal host. We tentatively investigate the functions of laterally transferred genes in the light of the interaction with their host as they should confer a selective advantage and success to the amoeba-resisting microorganisms.

  11. Quadrulella texcalense sp. nov. from a Mexican desert: An unexpected new environment for hyalospheniid testate amoebae.

    Pérez-Juárez, Horacio; Serrano-Vázquez, Angélica; Kosakyan, Anush; Mitchell, Edward A D; Rivera Aguilar, Víctor M; Lahr, Daniel J G; Hernández Moreno, Mayra M; Cuellar, Humberto Macías; Eguiarte, Luis E; Lara, Enrique

    2017-10-01

    Quadrulella (Amoebozoa, Arcellinida, Hyalospheniidae) is a genus of testate amoebae with unmistakable morphology, which secretes characteristic square plates to reinforce the test. They are mainly known from fens and freshwater habitats and have never been documented in deserts. We describe a new species, Quadrulella texcalense, from biological soil crusts in the intertropical desert of Tehuacán (state of Puebla, Mexico). Quadrulella texcalense occurred only at altitudes between 2140 and 2221m.a.s.l., together with the bryophyte genera Pseudocrossidium, Weissia, Bryum, Didymodon, Neohyophyla and Aloina. The soil was extremely dry (moisture of 1.97-2.6%), which contrasts sharply with previous reports for the Quadrulella genus. Single cell mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase I (COI) barcoding of thirteen isolated cells showed an important morphological variability despite having all the same COI barcode sequence. Quadrulella texcalense was placed in a tree containing other Hyalsopheniidae, including a newly barcoded South African species, Q. elegans. Q. texcalense unambiguously branched within genus Quadrulella in a compact clade but with a long branch, suggesting accelerated evolution due to a transition towards a new environment and/or under-sampling. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  12. Myosin-II sets the optimal response time scale of chemotactic amoeba

    Hsu, Hsin-Fang; Westendorf, Christian; Tarantola, Marco; Bodenschatz, Eberhard; Beta, Carsten

    2014-03-01

    The response dynamics of the actin cytoskeleton to external chemical stimuli plays a fundamental role in numerous cellular functions. One of the key players that governs the dynamics of the actin network is the motor protein myosin-II. Here we investigate the role of myosin-II in the response of the actin system to external stimuli. We used a microfluidic device in combination with a photoactivatable chemoattractant to apply stimuli to individual cells with high temporal resolution. We directly compare the actin dynamics in Dictyostelium discodelium wild type (WT) cells to a knockout mutant that is deficient in myosin-II (MNL). Similar to the WT a small population of MNL cells showed self-sustained oscillations even in absence of external stimuli. The actin response of MNL cells to a short pulse of chemoattractant resembles WT during the first 15 sec but is significantly delayed afterward. The amplitude of the dominant peak in the power spectrum from the response time series of MNL cells to periodic stimuli with varying period showed a clear resonance peak at a forcing period of 36 sec, which is significantly delayed as compared to the resonance at 20 sec found for the WT. This shift indicates an important role of myosin-II in setting the response time scale of motile amoeba. Institute of Physics und Astronomy, University of Potsdam, Karl-Liebknecht-Str. 24/25, 14476 Potsdam, Germany.

  13. The rate and effects of spontaneous mutation on fitness traits in the social amoeba, Dictyostelium discoideum.

    Hall, David W; Fox, Sara; Kuzdzal-Fick, Jennie J; Strassmann, Joan E; Queller, David C

    2013-07-08

    We performed a mutation accumulation (MA) experiment in the social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum to estimate the rate and distribution of effects of spontaneous mutations affecting eight putative fitness traits. We found that the per-generation mutation rate for most fitness components is 0.0019 mutations per haploid genome per generation or larger. This rate is an order of magnitude higher than estimates for fitness components in the unicellular eukaryote Saccharomyces cerevisiae, even though the base-pair substitution rate is two orders of magnitude lower. The high rate of fitness-altering mutations observed in this species may be partially explained by a large mutational target relative to S. cerevisiae. Fitness-altering mutations also may occur primarily at simple sequence repeats, which are common throughout the genome, including in coding regions, and may represent a target that is particularly likely to give fitness effects upon mutation. The majority of mutations had deleterious effects on fitness, but there was evidence for a substantial fraction, up to 40%, being beneficial for some of the putative fitness traits. Competitive ability within the multicellular slug appears to be under weak directional selection, perhaps reflecting the fact that slugs are sometimes, but not often, comprised of multiple clones in nature. Evidence for pleiotropy among fitness components across MA lines was absent, suggesting that mutations tend to act on single fitness components.

  14. Ecology of testate amoebae in an Amazonian peatland and development of a transfer function for palaeohydrological reconstruction.

    Swindles, Graeme T; Reczuga, Monika; Lamentowicz, Mariusz; Raby, Cassandra L; Turner, T Edward; Charman, Dan J; Gallego-Sala, Angela; Valderrama, Elvis; Williams, Christopher; Draper, Frederick; Honorio Coronado, Euridice N; Roucoux, Katherine H; Baker, Tim; Mullan, Donal J

    2014-08-01

    Tropical peatlands represent globally important carbon sinks with a unique biodiversity and are currently threatened by climate change and human activities. It is now imperative that proxy methods are developed to understand the ecohydrological dynamics of these systems and for testing peatland development models. Testate amoebae have been used as environmental indicators in ecological and palaeoecological studies of peatlands, primarily in ombrotrophic Sphagnum-dominated peatlands in the mid- and high-latitudes. We present the first ecological analysis of testate amoebae in a tropical peatland, a nutrient-poor domed bog in western (Peruvian) Amazonia. Litter samples were collected from different hydrological microforms (hummock to pool) along a transect from the edge to the interior of the peatland. We recorded 47 taxa from 21 genera. The most common taxa are Cryptodifflugia oviformis, Euglypha rotunda type, Phryganella acropodia, Pseudodifflugia fulva type and Trinema lineare. One species found only in the southern hemisphere, Argynnia spicata, is present. Arcella spp., Centropyxis aculeata and Lesqueresia spiralis are indicators of pools containing standing water. Canonical correspondence analysis and non-metric multidimensional scaling illustrate that water table depth is a significant control on the distribution of testate amoebae, similar to the results from mid- and high-latitude peatlands. A transfer function model for water table based on weighted averaging partial least-squares (WAPLS) regression is presented and performs well under cross-validation (r(2)(apparent)= 0.76, RMSE = 4.29; r(2)(jack)= 0.68, RMSEP =5.18). The transfer function was applied to a 1-m peat core, and sample-specific reconstruction errors were generated using bootstrapping. The reconstruction generally suggests near-surface water tables over the last 3,000 years, with a shift to drier conditions at c. cal. 1218-1273 AD.

  15. Arcellacea (testate amoebae) as bio-indicators of road salt contamination in lakes.

    Roe, Helen M; Patterson, R Timothy

    2014-08-01

    Winter deicing operations occur extensively in mid- to high-latitude metropolitan regions around the world and result in a significant reduction in road accidents. Deicing salts can, however, pose a major threat to water quality and aquatic organisms. In this paper, we examine the utility of Arcellacea (testate amoebae) for monitoring lakes that have become contaminated by winter deicing salts, particularly sodium chloride. We analysed 50 sediment samples and salt-related water property variables (chloride concentrations; conductivity) from 15 lakes in the Greater Toronto Area and adjacent areas of southern Ontario, Canada. The sampled lakes included lakes in proximity to major highways and suburban roads and control lakes in forested settings away from road influences. Samples from the most contaminated lakes, with chloride concentrations in excess of 400 mg/l and conductivities of >800 μS/cm, were dominated by species typically found in brackish and/or inhospitable lake environments and by lower faunal diversities (lowest Shannon diversity index values) than samples with lower readings. Q-R-mode cluster analysis and detrended correspondence analysis (DCA) resulted in the recognition of four assemblage groupings. These reflect varying levels of salt contamination in the study lakes, along with other local influences, including nutrient loading. The response to nutrients can, however, be isolated if the planktic eutrophic indicator species Cucurbitella tricuspis is removed from the counts. The findings show that the group has considerable potential for biomonitoring in salt-contaminated lakes, and their presence in lake sediment cores may provide significant insights into long-term benthic community health, which is integral for remedial efforts.

  16. Lamarckian evolution of the giant Mimivirus in allopatric laboratory culture on amoebae.

    Colson, Philippe; Raoult, Didier

    2012-01-01

    Acanthamoeba polyphaga Mimivirus has been subcultured 150 times on germ-free amoebae. This allopatric niche is very different from that found in the natural environment, where the virus is in competition with many other organisms. In this experiment, substantial gene variability and loss occurred concurrently with the emergence of phenotypically different viruses. We sought to quantify the respective roles of Lamarckian and Darwinian evolution during this experiment. We postulated that the Mimivirus genes that were down-regulated at the beginning of the allopatric laboratory culture and inactivated after 150 passages experienced Lamarckian evolution because phenotypic modifications preceded genotypic modifications, whereas we considered that genes that were highly transcribed in the new niche but were later inactivated obeyed Darwinian rules. We used the total transcript abundances and sequences described for the genes of Mimivirus at the beginning of its laboratory life and after 150 passages in allopatric culture on Acanthamoeba spp. We found a statistically significant positive correlation between the level of gene expression at the beginning of the culture and gene inactivation during the 150 passages. In particular, the mean transcript abundance at baseline was significantly lower for inactivated genes than for unchanged genes (165 ± 589 vs. 470 ± 1,625; p allopatric laboratory culture if they were encoded by variable genes than if they were encoded by conserved genes (9 vs. 15%; p = 0.062). Finally, Lamarckian evolution represented the evolutionary process encountered by 63% of the inactivated genes. Such observations may be explained by the lower level of DNA repair of useless genes.

  17. Validity of hip-mounted uniaxial accelerometry with heart-rate monitoring vs. triaxial accelerometry in the assessment of free-living energy expenditure in young children: the IDEFICS Validation Study.

    Ojiambo, Robert; Konstabel, Kenn; Veidebaum, Toomas; Reilly, John; Verbestel, Vera; Huybrechts, Inge; Sioen, Isabelle; Casajús, José A; Moreno, Luis A; Vicente-Rodriguez, German; Bammann, Karin; Tubic, Bojan M; Marild, Staffan; Westerterp, Klaas; Pitsiladis, Yannis P

    2012-11-01

    One of the aims of Identification and Prevention of Dietary- and Lifestyle-Induced Health Effects in Children and Infants (IDEFICS) validation study is to validate field measures of physical activity (PA) and energy expenditure (EE) in young children. This study compared the validity of uniaxial accelerometry with heart-rate (HR) monitoring vs. triaxial accelerometry against doubly labeled water (DLW) criterion method for assessment of free-living EE in young children. Forty-nine European children (25 female, 24 male) aged 4-10 yr (mean age: 6.9 ± 1.5 yr) were assessed by uniaxial ActiTrainer with HR, uniaxial 3DNX, and triaxial 3DNX accelerometry. Total energy expenditure (TEE) was estimated using DLW over a 1-wk period. The longitudinal axis of both devices and triaxial 3DNX counts per minute (CPM) were significantly (P hip-mounted uniaxial and triaxial accelerometers for assessing PA and EE is similar.

  18. The reconstruction of late Holocene depth-to-water-table based on testate amoebae in an eastern Australian mire

    Zheng, X.; Money, S.; Hope, G.

    2017-12-01

    There are relatively few quantitative palaeo-hydrological records available in eastern Australia, and those that are available, for example from dendroclimatology and the reconstruction of lake level, are often relatively short or have a relatively coarse temporal resolution (e.g. Wilkins et al. 2013; Palmer et al. 2015). Testate amoebae, a widely used hydrological proxy in the Northern Hemisphere, were used here to reconstruct depth to water table (DWT) at Snowy Flat, which is a Sphagnum-Richea-Empodismahigh altitude (1618 m asl) shrub bog in the Australian Capital Territory, Australia. Testate amoebae were quantified in a Snowy Flat core representing 4,200 cal Y BP and the community composition was used to reconstruct DWT based on our recently established transfer functions. Results from three different types of transfer functions (Fig. 1) consistently show there was a decreasing DWT (wetter) period centred on about 3350 cal Y BP, a trend towards increased dryness from about 3300 to 2200 cal Y BP and a distinctly drier period 850 to 700 cal Y BP which was immediately followed by a wetter period from 700 to 500 cal Y BP. We discuss these episodes and trends in relation to the drivers of climatic variability in this region and in particular, by comparing our results with other south-eastern Australia records, comment on the history of the southern annular mode.

  19. Amoebae of the genera Vannella Bovee, 1965 and Platyamoeba Page, 1969 isolated from fish and their phylogeny inferred from SSU rRNA gene and ITS sequences

    Dyková, Iva; Boháčová, Lenka; Fiala, Ivan; Macháčková, Blanka; Pecková, Hana; Dvořáková, Helena

    2005-01-01

    Roč. 41, č. 3 (2005), s. 219-230 ISSN 0932-4739 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR IAA6022202 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60220518 Keywords : fish-isolated amoebae * Vannella * Platyamoeba Subject RIV: EA - Cell Biology Impact factor: 1.253, year: 2005

  20. Loss of Cln3 impacts protein secretion in the social amoeba Dictyostelium.

    Huber, Robert J

    2017-07-01

    Neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis (NCL), also referred to as Batten disease, is the most common form of childhood neurodegeneration. Mutations in CLN3 cause the most prevalent subtype of the disease, which manifests during early childhood and is currently untreatable. The precise function of the CLN3 protein is still not known, which has inhibited the development of targeted therapies. In the social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum, loss of the CLN3 homolog, Cln3, reduces adhesion during early development, which delays streaming and aggregation. The results of the present study indicate that this phenotype may be at least partly due to aberrant protein secretion in cln3 - cells. It is well-established that Cln3 localizes primarily to the contractile vacuole (CV) system in Dictyostelium, and to a lesser extent, compartments of the endocytic pathway. Intriguingly, the CV system has been linked to the secretion of proteins that do not contain a signal peptide for secretion (i.e., unconventional protein secretion). Proteins that do contain a signal peptide are secreted via a conventional mechanism involving the endoplasmic reticulum, transport through the Golgi, and secretion via vesicle release. In this study, Cln3 was observed to co-localize with the Golgi marker wheat germ agglutinin suggesting that Cln3 participates in both secretion mechanisms. Chimeras of wild-type (WT) and cln3 - cells displayed delayed streaming and aggregation, and interestingly, cln3 - cells starved in conditioned media (CM) harvested from starving WT cells showed near normal timing of streaming and aggregation suggesting aberrant protein secretion in Cln3-deficient cells. Based on these observations, LC-MS/MS was used to reveal the protein content of CM from starved cells (mass spectrometry data are available via ProteomeXchange with identifier PXD004897). A total of 450 proteins were detected in WT and cln3 - CM, of which 3 were absent in cln3 - CM. Moreover, 12 proteins that were present in

  1. Free-Living Species of Carnivorous Mammals in Poland: Red Fox, Beech Marten, and Raccoon as a Potential Reservoir of Salmonella, Yersinia, Listeria spp. and Coagulase-Positive Staphylococcus.

    Aneta Nowakiewicz

    Full Text Available The objective of the study was to examine a population of free-living carnivorous mammals most commonly found in Poland (red fox, beech marten, and raccoon for the occurrence of bacteria that are potentially pathogenic for humans and other animal species and to determine their virulence potential (the presence of selected virulence genes. From the total pool of isolates obtained (n = 328, we selected 90 belonging to species that pose the greatest potential threat to human health: Salmonella spp. (n = 19; 4.51%, Yersinia enterocolitica (n = 10; 2.37%, Listeria monocytogenes and L. ivanovii (n = 21, and Staphylococcus aureus (n = 40; 9.5%. The Salmonella spp. isolates represented three different subspecies; S. enterica subsp. enterica accounted for a significant proportion (15/19, and most of the serotypes isolated (S. Typhimurium, S. Infantis, S. Newport and S. Enteritidis were among the 10 non-typhoidal Salmonella serotypes that are most often responsible for infections in Europe, including Poland. Y. enterococlitica was detected in the smallest percentage of animals, but 60% of strains among the isolates tested possessed the ail gene, which is responsible for attachment and invasion. Potentially pathogenic Listeria species were isolated from approx. 5% of the animals. The presence of all tested virulence genes was shown in 35% of L. monocytogenes strains, while in the case of the other strains, the genes occurred in varying numbers and configurations. The presence of the inlA, inlC, hlyA, and iap genes was noted in all strains, whereas the genes encoding PI-PLC, actin, and internalin Imo2821 were present in varying percentages (from 80% to 55%. S. aureus was obtained from 40 individuals. Most isolates possessed the hla, hld (95% for each, and hlb (32.5% genes encoding hemolysins as well as the gene encoding leukotoxin lukED (70%. In a similar percentage of strains (77.5%, the presence of at least one gene encoding enterotoxin was found, with 12

  2. Free-Living Species of Carnivorous Mammals in Poland: Red Fox, Beech Marten, and Raccoon as a Potential Reservoir of Salmonella, Yersinia, Listeria spp. and Coagulase-Positive Staphylococcus.

    Nowakiewicz, Aneta; Zięba, Przemysław; Ziółkowska, Grażyna; Gnat, Sebastian; Muszyńska, Marta; Tomczuk, Krzysztof; Majer Dziedzic, Barbara; Ulbrych, Łukasz; Trościańczyk, Aleksandra

    2016-01-01

    The objective of the study was to examine a population of free-living carnivorous mammals most commonly found in Poland (red fox, beech marten, and raccoon) for the occurrence of bacteria that are potentially pathogenic for humans and other animal species and to determine their virulence potential (the presence of selected virulence genes). From the total pool of isolates obtained (n = 328), we selected 90 belonging to species that pose the greatest potential threat to human health: Salmonella spp. (n = 19; 4.51%), Yersinia enterocolitica (n = 10; 2.37%), Listeria monocytogenes and L. ivanovii (n = 21), and Staphylococcus aureus (n = 40; 9.5%). The Salmonella spp. isolates represented three different subspecies; S. enterica subsp. enterica accounted for a significant proportion (15/19), and most of the serotypes isolated (S. Typhimurium, S. Infantis, S. Newport and S. Enteritidis) were among the 10 non-typhoidal Salmonella serotypes that are most often responsible for infections in Europe, including Poland. Y. enterococlitica was detected in the smallest percentage of animals, but 60% of strains among the isolates tested possessed the ail gene, which is responsible for attachment and invasion. Potentially pathogenic Listeria species were isolated from approx. 5% of the animals. The presence of all tested virulence genes was shown in 35% of L. monocytogenes strains, while in the case of the other strains, the genes occurred in varying numbers and configurations. The presence of the inlA, inlC, hlyA, and iap genes was noted in all strains, whereas the genes encoding PI-PLC, actin, and internalin Imo2821 were present in varying percentages (from 80% to 55%). S. aureus was obtained from 40 individuals. Most isolates possessed the hla, hld (95% for each), and hlb (32.5%) genes encoding hemolysins as well as the gene encoding leukotoxin lukED (70%). In a similar percentage of strains (77.5%), the presence of at least one gene encoding enterotoxin was found, with 12

  3. Day-and-night glycaemic control with closed-loop insulin delivery versus conventional insulin pump therapy in free-living adults with well controlled type 1 diabetes: an open-label, randomised, crossover study.

    Bally, Lia; Thabit, Hood; Kojzar, Harald; Mader, Julia K; Qerimi-Hyseni, Jehona; Hartnell, Sara; Tauschmann, Martin; Allen, Janet M; Wilinska, Malgorzata E; Pieber, Thomas R; Evans, Mark L; Hovorka, Roman

    2017-04-01

    Tight control of blood glucose concentration in people with type 1 diabetes predisposes to hypoglycaemia. We aimed to investigate whether day-and-night hybrid closed-loop insulin delivery can improve glucose control while alleviating the risk of hypoglycaemia in adults with HbA 1c below 7·5% (58 mmol/mol). In this open-label, randomised, crossover study, we recruited adults (aged ≥18 years) with type 1 diabetes and HbA 1c below 7·5% from Addenbrooke's Hospital (Cambridge, UK) and Medical University of Graz (Graz, Austria). After a 2-4 week run-in period, participants were randomly assigned (1:1), using web-based randomly permuted blocks of four, to receive insulin via the day-and-night hybrid closed-loop system or usual pump therapy for 4 weeks, followed by a 2-4 week washout period and then the other intervention for 4 weeks. Treatment interventions were unsupervised and done under free-living conditions. During the closed-loop period, a model-predictive control algorithm directed insulin delivery, and prandial insulin delivery was calculated with a standard bolus wizard. The primary outcome was the proportion of time when sensor glucose concentration was in target range (3·9-10·0 mmol/L) over the 4 week study period. Analyses were by intention to treat. This study is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, number NCT02727231, and is completed. Between March 21 and June 24, 2016, we recruited 31 participants, of whom 29 were randomised. One participant withdrew during the first closed-loop period because of dissatisfaction with study devices and glucose control. The proportion of time when sensor glucose concentration was in target range was 10·5 percentage points higher (95% CI 7·6-13·4; pday-and-night hybrid closed-loop insulin delivery under unsupervised, free-living conditions for 4 weeks in adults with type 1 diabetes and HbA 1c below 7·5% is safe and well tolerated, improves glucose control, and reduces hypoglycaemia burden. Larger and longer studies

  4. On different types of hereditable changes in the viability of Amoeba protens cells x-irradiated with varying doses

    Bychkovskaya, I.B.; Ochinskaya, G.K.; Erokhina, G.M.

    1976-01-01

    Qualitatively different types of cells lethality have been observed in the posterity of amoebae irradiated with doses ranging from 0.5 to 40 kR and from 60 to 120 kR. At doses of 0.5 to 40 kR, a certain part of cells in a population dies, and the effect is characterized by stability and independency of a radiation dose, hereditable radiation damage of all the cells in the population, and by the fact that it might be caused not only by a derect action of radiation but also by a preirradiated culture medium. Higher doses (60 to 120 kR) cause a more drastic but sell stable effect. Depending on a dose value, a varying percentage of cells has shown the effect not being caused by the action of the preirradiated medium. The data obtained indicate that there are different mechanisms of hereditable radiation damages to cells caused by varying radiation doses

  5. Metal stress in free-living nematodes

    Hamelijnck-Arts, M.S.J.

    2001-01-01

    Terrestrial invertebrates offer meaningful targets for assessing the potential adverse effects of chemicals on soil ecosystems. Invertebrates play a major role in the functioning of the soil ecosystem by enhancing the soil structure, mineralization and the decomposition of organic material, and

  6. Fatal primary amoebic meningoencephalitis in a Norwegian tourist returning from Thailand.

    Stubhaug, Tore Taksdal; Reiakvam, Olaug Marie; Stensvold, Christen Rune; Hermansen, Nils Olav; Holberg-Petersen, Mona; Antal, Ellen-Ann; Gaustad, Knut; Førde, Ingrid Schage; Heger, Bernt

    2016-06-01

    Primary amoebic meningoencephalitis (PAM) is a rare disease caused by the free-living amoeba Naegleria fowleri . Infection occurs by insufflation of water containing amoebae into the nasal cavity, and is usually associated with bathing in freshwater. Nasal irrigation is a more rarely reported route of infection. A fatal case of PAM in a previously healthy Norwegian woman, acquired during a holiday trip to Thailand, is described. Clinical findings were consistent with rapidly progressing meningoencephalitis. The cause of infection was discovered by chance, owing to the unexpected detection of N. fowleri DNA by a PCR assay targeting fungi. A conclusive diagnosis was established based on sequencing of N. fowleri DNA from brain biopsies, supported by histopathological findings. Nasal irrigation using contaminated tap water is suspected as the source of infection. The clinical presentation of PAM is very similar to severe bacterial meningitis. This case is a reminder that when standard investigations fail to identify a cause of infection in severe meningoencephalitis, it is of crucial importance to continue a broad search for a conclusive diagnosis. PAM should be considered as a diagnosis in patients with symptoms of severe meningoencephalitis returning from endemic areas.

  7. Effects of regularly consuming dietary fibre rich soluble cocoa products on bowel habits in healthy subjects: a free-living, two-stage, randomized, crossover, single-blind intervention

    Sarriá Beatriz

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Dietary fibre is both preventive and therapeutic for bowel functional diseases. Soluble cocoa products are good sources of dietary fibre that may be supplemented with this dietary component. This study assessed the effects of regularly consuming two soluble cocoa products (A and B with different non-starch polysaccharides levels (NSP, 15.1 and 22.0% w/w, respectively on bowel habits using subjective intestinal function and symptom questionnaires, a daily diary and a faecal marker in healthy individuals. Methods A free-living, two-stage, randomized, crossover, single-blind intervention was carried out in 44 healthy men and women, between 18-55 y old, who had not taken dietary supplements, laxatives, or antibiotics six months before the start of the study. In the four-week-long intervention stages, separated by a three-week-wash-out stage, two servings of A and B, that provided 2.26 vs. 6.60 g/day of NSP respectively, were taken. In each stage, volunteers' diet was recorded using a 72-h food intake report. Results Regularly consuming cocoa A and B increased fibre intake, although only cocoa B significantly increased fibre intake (p Conclusions Regular consumption of the cocoa products increases dietary fibre intake to recommended levels and product B improves bowel habits. The use of both objective and subjective assessments to evaluate the effects of food on bowel habits is recommended.

  8. Immunodetection of Helicobacter sp. and the associated expression of ABO blood group antigens in the gastric mucosa of captive and free-living New World primates in the Amazon region

    Délia Cristina Figueira Aguiar

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available The histo-blood group ABH antigens were first described in humans. These antigens are only present on erythrocytes from great apes and humans, while in more primitive animals they are found in tissues and body fluids. The ABH antigens are mainly distributed in tissues exposed to the external environment and potentially serve as ligands for pathogens or inhibitors of tissue connections. The objective of this paper was two-fold: (i to determine the presence of Helicobacter sp. in the gastric mucosa of 16 captive and 24 free-living New World monkeys and (ii to evaluate the presence of histopathological alterations related to bacterial infection and the associated expression of ABH antigens in the tissue. Stomach tissues from 13 species of monkey were assessed using haematoxylin-eosin and modified Gram staining (Hucker methods. An immunohistochemical analysis of the tissue revealed the presence of infectious bacteria that were characteristic of the genus Helicobacter sp. The results demonstrate that various species of monkey might be naturally infected with the Helicobacter sp. and that there is an increased susceptibility to infection. This study serves as a comparative analysis of infection between human and non-human primates and indicates the presence of a new species of Helicobacter.

  9. Monoxenic liquid culture with Escherichia coli of the free-living nematode Panagrolaimus sp. (strain NFS 24-5), a potential live food candidate for marine fish and shrimp larvae.

    Ayub, Farhana; Seychelles, Laurent; Strauch, Olaf; Wittke, Martina; Ehlers, Ralf-Udo

    2013-09-01

    The free-living, bacterial-feeding nematode Panagrolaimus sp. (strain NFS 24-5) has potential for use as live food for marine shrimp and fish larvae. Mass production in liquid culture is a prerequisite for its commercial exploitation. Panagrolaimus sp. was propagated in monoxenic liquid culture on Escherichia coli and parameters, like nematode density, population dynamics and biomass were recorded and compared with life history table data. A mean maximum nematode density of 174,278 mL(-1) and a maximum of 251,000 mL(-1) were recorded on day 17 after inoculation. Highest average biomass was 40 g L(-1) at day 13. The comparison with life history table data indicated that the hypothetical potential of liquid culture is much higher than documented during this investigation. Nematode development is delayed in liquid culture and egg production per female is more than five times lower than reported from life history trait analysis. The latter assessed a nematode generation time of 7.1 days, whereas the process time at maximum nematode density in liquid culture was 16 days indicating that a reduction of the process time can be achieved by further investigating the influence of nematode inoculum density on population development. The results challenge future research to reduce process time and variability and improve population dynamics also during scale-up of the liquid culture process.

  10. Changes in Structure and Functioning of Protist (Testate Amoebae Communities Due to Conversion of Lowland Rainforest into Rubber and Oil Palm Plantations.

    Valentyna Krashevska

    Full Text Available Large areas of tropical rainforest are being converted to agricultural and plantation land uses, but little is known of biodiversity and ecological functioning under these replacement land uses. We investigated the effects of conversion of rainforest into jungle rubber, intensive rubber and oil palm plantations on testate amoebae, diverse and functionally important protists in litter and soil. Living testate amoebae species richness, density and biomass were all lower in replacement land uses than in rainforest, with the impact being more pronounced in litter than in soil. Similar abundances of species of high and low trophic level in rainforest suggest that trophic interactions are more balanced, with a high number of functionally redundant species, than in rubber and oil palm. In contrast, plantations had a low density of high trophic level species indicating losses of functions. This was particularly so in oil palm plantations. In addition, the relative density of species with siliceous shells was >50% lower in the litter layer of oil palm and rubber compared to rainforest and jungle rubber. This difference suggests that rainforest conversion changes biogenic silicon pools and increases silicon losses. Overall, the lower species richness, density and biomass in plantations than in rainforest, and the changes in the functional composition of the testate amoebae community, indicate detrimental effects of rainforest conversion on the structure and functioning of microbial food webs.

  11. Changes in Structure and Functioning of Protist (Testate Amoebae) Communities Due to Conversion of Lowland Rainforest into Rubber and Oil Palm Plantations.

    Krashevska, Valentyna; Klarner, Bernhard; Widyastuti, Rahayu; Maraun, Mark; Scheu, Stefan

    2016-01-01

    Large areas of tropical rainforest are being converted to agricultural and plantation land uses, but little is known of biodiversity and ecological functioning under these replacement land uses. We investigated the effects of conversion of rainforest into jungle rubber, intensive rubber and oil palm plantations on testate amoebae, diverse and functionally important protists in litter and soil. Living testate amoebae species richness, density and biomass were all lower in replacement land uses than in rainforest, with the impact being more pronounced in litter than in soil. Similar abundances of species of high and low trophic level in rainforest suggest that trophic interactions are more balanced, with a high number of functionally redundant species, than in rubber and oil palm. In contrast, plantations had a low density of high trophic level species indicating losses of functions. This was particularly so in oil palm plantations. In addition, the relative density of species with siliceous shells was >50% lower in the litter layer of oil palm and rubber compared to rainforest and jungle rubber. This difference suggests that rainforest conversion changes biogenic silicon pools and increases silicon losses. Overall, the lower species richness, density and biomass in plantations than in rainforest, and the changes in the functional composition of the testate amoebae community, indicate detrimental effects of rainforest conversion on the structure and functioning of microbial food webs.

  12. Orexin receptor expression in the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal and hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axes of free-living European beavers (Castor fiber L.) in different periods of the reproductive cycle.

    Czerwinska, Joanna; Chojnowska, Katarzyna; Kaminski, Tadeusz; Bogacka, Iwona; Smolinska, Nina; Kaminska, Barbara

    2017-01-01

    Orexins are hypothalamic neuropeptides acting via two G protein-coupled receptors in mammals: orexin receptor 1 (OX1R) and orexin receptor 2 (OX2R). In European beavers, which are seasonally breeding animals, the presence and functions of orexins and their receptors remain unknown. Our study aimed to determine the expression of OXR mRNAs and the localization of OXR proteins in hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal/gonadal (HPA/HPG) axes in free-living beavers. The expression of OXR genes (OX1R, OX2R) and proteins was found in all analysed tissues during three periods of beavers' reproductive cycle (April, July, November). The expression of OXR mRNAs in the beaver HPA axis varied seasonally (Ppituitary and adrenals, OX1R mRNA levels were relatively constant in females and peaked in July in males (P<0.05), whereas the OX2R was most highly expressed in males in November and in females in April (P<0.05). In gonads, OX1R expression did not fluctuate between seasons or sexes, but transcript levels were elevated in the testes in November and in the ovaries in July (P<0.05). In turn, OX2R mRNA levels varied between the sexes (P<0.05) and were higher in females (July and November) than in males (P<0.05). The circannual variations in OXR mRNA levels in HPA and HPG axes suggest that the expression of these receptors is associated with sex-specific changes in beavers' reproductive activity and their environmental adaptations. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. iTRAQ analysis of hepatic proteins in free-living Mus spretus mice to assess the contamination status of areas surrounding Doñana National Park (SW Spain)

    Abril, Nieves; Chicano-Gálvez, Eduardo; Michán, Carmen; Pueyo, Carmen; López-Barea, Juan, E-mail: bb1lobaj@uco.es

    2015-08-01

    This work aims to develop and integrate new -omics tools that would be applicable to different ecosystem types for a technological updating of environmental evaluations. We used a 2nd-generation (iTRAQ-8plex) proteomic approach to identify/quantify proteins differentially expressed in the liver of free-living Mus spretus mice from Doñana National Park or its proximities. Mass spectrometry was performed in an LTQ Orbitrap system for iTRAQ reporter ion quantitation and protein identification using a Mus musculus database as reference. A prior IEF step improved the separation of the complex peptide mixture. Over 2000 identified proteins were altered, of which 118 changed by ≥ 2.5-fold in mice from at least two problem sites. Part of the results obtained with the iTRAQ analysis was confirmed by Western blot. Over 75% of the 118 proteins were upregulated in animals captured at polluted sites and only 16 proteins were downregulated. Upregulated proteins were involved in stress response; cell proliferation and apoptosis; signal transduction; metastasis or tumour suppression; xenobiotic export or vesicular trafficking; and metabolism. The downregulated proteins, all potentially harmful, were classified as oncoproteins and proteins favouring genome instability. The iTRAQ results presented here demonstrated that the survival of hepatic cells is compromised in animals living at polluted sites, which showed deep alterations in metabolism and the signalling pathways. The identified proteins may be useful as biomarkers of environmental pollution and provide insight about the metabolic pathways and/or physiological processes affected by pollutants in DNP and its surrounding areas. - Highlights: • iTRAQ quantitation was used for the first time to monitor a wildlife reserve • Over 2,000 proteins with altered expression were identified in problem Doñana sites • Of them, 118 changed over 2.5-fold in, at least, two problem sites • Upregulation of protective proteins

  14. Impact of two hot and dry summers on the community structure and functional diversity of testate amoebae in an artificial bog, illustrating their use as bioindicators of peatland health

    I. Koenig

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Ongoing climate warming threatens the survival of bogs at the warm/dry limit of their distribution (e.g. in central Europe, and jeopardises the restoration of damaged bogs even more. Because vegetation changes can be slow, early indicators of hydrological change such as testate amoebae are useful. We used testate amoeba community structure and community weighted mean of functional traits to monitor the impact of two very hot and dry summers on a small (around 100 m2 artificial peatland constructed in the botanic garden of Neuchâtel, Switzerland. We collected analogous samples in a naturally regenerating cutover peatland at 1000 m a.s.l. in the Jura Mountains as a reference. The comparison of living and dead assemblages in the botanic garden showed an increased representation of smaller testate amoeba taxa (Corythion dubium, small Euglypha sp. with a small pseudostome (indicative of dry conditions and a loss of mixotrophy in 2015, followed by a weaker further shift in 2016. Nevertheless, the testate amoeba community structure in 2016 still indicated a dry Sphagnum bog. Testate amoeba analysis allows rapid assessment of peatland health and/or restoration success. The comparison of living and dead assemblages makes it possible to observe changes within a season in a single sampling campaign.

  15. Sphagnum-dwelling testate amoebae in subarctic bogs are more sensitive to soil warming in the growing season than in winter: the results of eight-year field climate manipulations.

    Tsyganov, Andrey N; Aerts, Rien; Nijs, Ivan; Cornelissen, Johannes H C; Beyens, Louis

    2012-05-01

    Sphagnum-dwelling testate amoebae are widely used in paleoclimate reconstructions as a proxy for climate-induced changes in bogs. However, the sensitivity of proxies to seasonal climate components is an important issue when interpreting proxy records. Here, we studied the effects of summer warming, winter snow addition solely and winter snow addition together with spring warming on testate amoeba assemblages after eight years of experimental field climate manipulations. All manipulations were accomplished using open top chambers in a dry blanket bog located in the sub-Arctic (Abisko, Sweden). We estimated sensitivity of abundance, diversity and assemblage structure of living and empty shell assemblages of testate amoebae in the living and decaying layers of Sphagnum. Our results show that, in a sub-arctic climate, testate amoebae are more sensitive to climate changes in the growing season than in winter. Summer warming reduced species richness and shifted assemblage composition towards predominance of xerophilous species for the living and empty shell assemblages in both layers. The higher soil temperatures during the growing season also decreased abundance of empty shells in both layers hinting at a possible increase in their decomposition rates. Thus, although possible effects of climate changes on preservation of empty shells should always be taken into account, species diversity and structure of testate amoeba assemblages in dry subarctic bogs are sensitive proxies for climatic changes during the growing season. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  16. The TOM Complex of Amoebozoans: the Cases of the Amoeba Acanthamoeba castellanii and the Slime Mold Dictyostelium discoideum.

    Wojtkowska, Małgorzata; Buczek, Dorota; Stobienia, Olgierd; Karachitos, Andonis; Antoniewicz, Monika; Slocinska, Małgorzata; Makałowski, Wojciech; Kmita, Hanna

    2015-07-01

    Protein import into mitochondria requires a wide variety of proteins, forming complexes in both mitochondrial membranes. The TOM complex (translocase of the outer membrane) is responsible for decoding of targeting signals, translocation of imported proteins across or into the outer membrane, and their subsequent sorting. Thus the TOM complex is regarded as the main gate into mitochondria for imported proteins. Available data indicate that mitochondria of representative organisms from across the major phylogenetic lineages of eukaryotes differ in subunit organization of the TOM complex. The subunit organization of the TOM complex in the Amoebozoa is still elusive, so we decided to investigate its organization in the soil amoeba Acanthamoeba castellanii and the slime mold Dictyostelium discoideum. They represent two major subclades of the Amoebozoa: the Lobosa and Conosa, respectively. Our results confirm the presence of Tom70, Tom40 and Tom7 in the A. castellanii and D. discoideum TOM complex, while the presence of Tom22 and Tom20 is less supported. Interestingly, the Tom proteins display the highest similarity to Opisthokonta cognate proteins, with the exception of Tom40. Thus representatives of two major subclades of the Amoebozoa appear to be similar in organization of the TOM complex, despite differences in their lifestyle. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier GmbH.. All rights reserved.

  17. Response of forest soil euglyphid testate amoebae (Rhizaria: Cercozoa) to pig cadavers assessed by high-throughput sequencing.

    Seppey, Christophe V W; Fournier, Bertrand; Szelecz, Ildikò; Singer, David; Mitchell, Edward A D; Lara, Enrique

    2016-03-01

    Decomposing cadavers modify the soil environment, but the effect on soil organisms and especially on soil protists is still poorly documented. We conducted a 35-month experiment in a deciduous forest where soil samples were taken under pig cadavers, control plots and fake pigs (bags of similar volume as the pigs). We extracted total soil DNA, amplified the SSU ribosomal RNA (rRNA) gene V9 region and sequenced it by Illumina technology and analysed the data for euglyphid testate amoebae (Rhizaria: Euglyphida), a common group of protozoa known to respond to micro-environmental changes. We found 51 euglyphid operational taxonomic units (OTUs), 45 of which did not match any known sequence. Most OTUs decreased in abundance underneath cadavers between days 0 and 309, but some responded positively after a time lag. We sequenced the full-length SSU rRNA gene of two common OTUs that responded positively to cadavers; a phylogenetic analysis showed that they did not belong to any known euglyphid family. This study confirmed the existence of an unknown diversity of euglyphids and that they react to cadavers. Results suggest that metabarcoding of soil euglyphids could be used as a forensic tool to estimate the post-mortem interval (PMI) particularly for long-term (>2 months) PMI, for which no reliable tool exists.

  18. Systematic Analysis of γ-Aminobutyric Acid (GABA) Metabolism and Function in the Social Amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum*

    Wu, Yuantai; Janetopoulos, Chris

    2013-01-01

    While GABA has been suggested to regulate spore encapsulation in the social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum, the metabolic profile and other potential functions of GABA during development remain unclear. In this study, we investigated the homeostasis of GABA metabolism by disrupting genes related to GABA metabolism and signaling. Extracellular levels of GABA are tightly regulated during early development, and GABA is generated by the glutamate decarboxylase, GadB, during growth and in early development. However, overexpression of the prespore-specific homologue, GadA, in the presence of GadB reduces production of extracellular GABA. Perturbation of extracellular GABA levels delays the process of aggregation. Cytosolic GABA is degraded by the GABA transaminase, GabT, in the mitochondria. Disruption of a putative vesicular GABA transporter (vGAT) homologue DdvGAT reduces secreted GABA. We identified the GABAB receptor-like family member GrlB as the major GABA receptor during early development, and either disruption or overexpression of GrlB delays aggregation. This delay is likely the result of an abolished pre-starvation response and late expression of several “early” developmental genes. Distinct genes are employed for GABA generation during sporulation. During sporulation, GadA alone is required for generating GABA and DdvGAT is likely responsible for GABA secretion. GrlE but not GrlB is the GABA receptor during late development. PMID:23548898

  19. Automated algorithms for detecting sleep period time using a multi-sensor pattern-recognition activity monitor from 24 h free-living data in older adults.

    Cabanas-Sánchez, Verónica; Higueras-Fresnillo, Sara; De la Cámara, Miguel Ángel; Veiga, Oscar L; Martinez-Gomez, David

    2018-05-16

    The aims of the present study were (i) to develop automated algorithms to identify the sleep period time in 24 h data from the Intelligent Device for Energy Expenditure and Activity (IDEEA) in older adults, and (ii) to analyze the agreement between these algorithms to identify the sleep period time as compared to self-reported data and expert visual analysis of accelerometer raw data. This study comprised 50 participants, aged 65-85 years. Fourteen automated algorithms were developed. Participants reported their bedtime and waking time on the days on which they wore the device. A well-trained expert reviewed each IDEEA file in order to visually identify bedtime and waking time on each day. To explore the agreement between methods, Pearson correlations, mean differences, mean percentage errors, accuracy, sensitivity and specificity, and the Bland-Altman method were calculated. With 87 d of valid data, algorithms 6, 7, 11 and 12 achieved higher levels of agreement in determining sleep period time when compared to self-reported data (mean difference  =  -0.34 to 0.01 h d -1 ; mean absolute error  =  10.66%-11.44%; r  =  0.515-0.686; accuracy  =  95.0%-95.6%; sensitivity  =  93.0%-95.8%; specificity  =  95.7%-96.4%) and expert visual analysis (mean difference  =  -0.04 to 0.31 h d -1 ; mean absolute error  =  5.0%-6.97%; r  =  0.620-0.766; accuracy  =  97.2%-98.0%; sensitivity  =  94.5%-97.6%; specificity  =  98.4%-98.8%). Bland-Altman plots showed no systematic biases in these comparisons (all p  >  0.05). Differences between methods did not vary significantly by gender, age, obesity, self-rated health, or the presence of chronic conditions. These four algorithms can be used to identify easily and with adequate accuracy the sleep period time using the IDEEA activity monitor from 24 h free-living data in older adults.

  20. Increased Protein Consumption during the Day from an Energy-Restricted Diet Augments Satiety but Does Not Reduce Daily Fat or Carbohydrate Intake on a Free-Living Test Day in Overweight Women.

    Gwin, Jess A; Maki, Kevin C; Leidy, Heather J

    2017-12-01

    between the NP-BEEF and NP-PLANT treatments. Conclusions: Although appetite control, satiety, and food cravings improved after an HP energy-restriction diet, increased protein consumption did not reduce carbohydrate and fat intakes throughout the free-living test day in overweight healthy women exposed to highly palatable foods. This trial was registered at clinicaltrials.gov as NCT02614729. © 2017 American Society for Nutrition.

  1. Acetate and succinate production in amoebae, helminths, diplomonads, trichomonads and trypanosomatids: common and diverse metabolic strategies used by parasitic lower eukaryotes.

    Bringaud, F; Ebikeme, C; Boshart, M

    2010-08-01

    Parasites that often grow anaerobically in their hosts have adopted a fermentative strategy relying on the production of partially oxidized end products, including lactate, glycerol, ethanol, succinate and acetate. This review focuses on recent progress in understanding acetate production in protist parasites, such as amoebae, diplomonads, trichomonads, trypanosomatids and in the metazoan parasites helminths, as well as the succinate production pathway(s) present in some of them. We also describe the unconventional organisation of the tricarboxylic acid cycle associated with the fermentative strategy adopted by the procyclic trypanosomes, which may resemble the probable structure of the primordial TCA cycle in prokaryotes.

  2. Whole genome sequencing of mutation accumulation lines reveals a low mutation rate in the social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum.

    Gerda Saxer

    Full Text Available Spontaneous mutations play a central role in evolution. Despite their importance, mutation rates are some of the most elusive parameters to measure in evolutionary biology. The combination of mutation accumulation (MA experiments and whole-genome sequencing now makes it possible to estimate mutation rates by directly observing new mutations at the molecular level across the whole genome. We performed an MA experiment with the social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum and sequenced the genomes of three randomly chosen lines using high-throughput sequencing to estimate the spontaneous mutation rate in this model organism. The mitochondrial mutation rate of 6.76×10(-9, with a Poisson confidence interval of 4.1×10(-9 - 9.5×10(-9, per nucleotide per generation is slightly lower than estimates for other taxa. The mutation rate estimate for the nuclear DNA of 2.9×10(-11, with a Poisson confidence interval ranging from 7.4×10(-13 to 1.6×10(-10, is the lowest reported for any eukaryote. These results are consistent with low microsatellite mutation rates previously observed in D. discoideum and low levels of genetic variation observed in wild D. discoideum populations. In addition, D. discoideum has been shown to be quite resistant to DNA damage, which suggests an efficient DNA-repair mechanism that could be an adaptation to life in soil and frequent exposure to intracellular and extracellular mutagenic compounds. The social aspect of the life cycle of D. discoideum and a large portion of the genome under relaxed selection during vegetative growth could also select for a low mutation rate. This hypothesis is supported by a significantly lower mutation rate per cell division in multicellular eukaryotes compared with unicellular eukaryotes.

  3. Amoeba-inspired Tug-of-War algorithms for exploration-exploitation dilemma in extended Bandit Problem.

    Aono, Masashi; Kim, Song-Ju; Hara, Masahiko; Munakata, Toshinori

    2014-03-01

    The true slime mold Physarum polycephalum, a single-celled amoeboid organism, is capable of efficiently allocating a constant amount of intracellular resource to its pseudopod-like branches that best fit the environment where dynamic light stimuli are applied. Inspired by the resource allocation process, the authors formulated a concurrent search algorithm, called the Tug-of-War (TOW) model, for maximizing the profit in the multi-armed Bandit Problem (BP). A player (gambler) of the BP should decide as quickly and accurately as possible which slot machine to invest in out of the N machines and faces an "exploration-exploitation dilemma." The dilemma is a trade-off between the speed and accuracy of the decision making that are conflicted objectives. The TOW model maintains a constant intracellular resource volume while collecting environmental information by concurrently expanding and shrinking its branches. The conservation law entails a nonlocal correlation among the branches, i.e., volume increment in one branch is immediately compensated by volume decrement(s) in the other branch(es). Owing to this nonlocal correlation, the TOW model can efficiently manage the dilemma. In this study, we extend the TOW model to apply it to a stretched variant of BP, the Extended Bandit Problem (EBP), which is a problem of selecting the best M-tuple of the N machines. We demonstrate that the extended TOW model exhibits better performances for 2-tuple-3-machine and 2-tuple-4-machine instances of EBP compared with the extended versions of well-known algorithms for BP, the ϵ-Greedy and SoftMax algorithms, particularly in terms of its short-term decision-making capability that is essential for the survival of the amoeba in a hostile environment. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Testate amoebae analysis in the peat deposits of the swamp Dolgon’koye in the south of Western Siberia and peatland paleohydrology for last 3100 years

    Kurina, Irina V.; Blyakharchuk, Tatiana A.

    2018-03-01

    Our research is devoted to paleohydrological reconstruction in the swamp located in the river valley on the piedmont of the Altai Mountains in the south of Western Siberia. The reconstruction was carried out based on rhizopod analysis for the last 3100 cal yr. A large amount of different testate amoebae was found in the peat. Total 64 testate amoebae taxa were recorded in the peat core with the most abundant being: Trinema lineare, Centropyxis aculeata, C. aerophila, Euglypha rotunda, Cryptodifflugia sp. Decrease of surface wetness in the swamp are observed 2280, 2140, 1900–600 cal yr BP and increase – in 2700, 2500–1900, 230–215 cal yr BP. The results of our reconstruction of the swamp paleohydrology agrees well with the paleoclimatic data obtained earlier for the central area of the south of Western Siberia Plain. It indicates a high sensitivity of the swamp to climatic changes in the Holocene. The rhizopod analysis proved to be very effective when used for paleohydrology reconstruction in minerotrophic peat.

  5. MicroRNAs in Amoebozoa: deep sequencing of the small RNA population in the social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum reveals developmentally regulated microRNAs.

    Avesson, Lotta; Reimegård, Johan; Wagner, E Gerhart H; Söderbom, Fredrik

    2012-10-01

    The RNA interference machinery has served as a guardian of eukaryotic genomes since the divergence from prokaryotes. Although the basic components have a shared origin, silencing pathways directed by small RNAs have evolved in diverse directions in different eukaryotic lineages. Micro (mi)RNAs regulate protein-coding genes and play vital roles in plants and animals, but less is known about their functions in other organisms. Here, we report, for the first time, deep sequencing of small RNAs from the social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum. RNA from growing single-cell amoebae as well as from two multicellular developmental stages was sequenced. Computational analyses combined with experimental data reveal the expression of miRNAs, several of them exhibiting distinct expression patterns during development. To our knowledge, this is the first report of miRNAs in the Amoebozoa supergroup. We also show that overexpressed miRNA precursors generate miRNAs and, in most cases, miRNA* sequences, whose biogenesis is dependent on the Dicer-like protein DrnB, further supporting the presence of miRNAs in D. discoideum. In addition, we find miRNAs processed from hairpin structures originating from an intron as well as from a class of repetitive elements. We believe that these repetitive elements are sources for newly evolved miRNAs.

  6. Sphagnum-dwelling testate amoebae in subarctic bogs are more sensitive to soil warming in the growing season than in winter: the results of eight-year field climate manipulations.

    Tsyganov, A.N.; Aerts, R.; Nijs, I.; Cornelissen, J.H.C.; Beyens, L.

    2012-01-01

    Sphagnum-dwelling testate amoebae are widely used in paleoclimate reconstructions as a proxy for climate-induced changes in bogs. However, the sensitivity of proxies to seasonal climate components is an important issue when interpreting proxy records. Here, we studied the effects of summer warming,

  7. Response of sphagnum peatland testate amoebae to a 1-year transplantation experiment along an artificial hydrological gradient.

    Marcisz, Katarzyna; Fournier, Bertrand; Gilbert, Daniel; Lamentowicz, Mariusz; Mitchell, Edward A D

    2014-05-01

    Peatland testate amoebae (TA) are well-established bioindicators for depth to water table (DWT), but effects of hydrological changes on TA communities have never been tested experimentally. We tested this in a field experiment by placing Sphagnum carpets (15 cm diameter) collected in hummock, lawn and pool microsites (origin) at three local conditions (dry, moist and wet) using trenches dug in a peatland. One series of samples was seeded with microorganism extract from all microsites. TA community were analysed at T0: 8-2008, T1: 5-2009 and T2: 8-2009. We analysed the data using conditional inference trees, principal response curves (PRC) and DWT inferred from TA communities using a transfer function used for paleoecological reconstruction. Density declined from T0 to T1 and then increased sharply by T2. Species richness, Simpson diversity and Simpson evenness were lower at T2 than at T0 and T1. Seeded communities had higher species richness in pool samples at T0. Pool samples tended to have higher density, lower species richness, Simpson diversity and Simpson Evenness than hummock and/or lawn samples until T1. In the PRC, the effect of origin was significant at T0 and T1, but the effect faded away by T2. Seeding effect was strongest at T1 and lowest vanished by T2. Local condition effect was strong but not in line with the wetness gradient at T1 but started to reflect it by T2. Likewise, TA-inferred DWT started to match the experimental conditions by T2, but more so in hummock and lawn samples than in pool samples. This study confirmed that TA responds to hydrological changes over a 1-year period. However, sensitivity of TA to hydrological fluctuations, and thus the accuracy of inferred DWT changes, was habitat specific, pool TA communities being least responsive to environmental changes. Lawns and hummocks may be thus better suited than pools for paleoecological reconstructions. This, however, contrasts with the higher prediction error and species' tolerance for

  8. Species richness of testate amoebae in different environments from the upper Paraná river floodplain (PR/MS - doi: 10.4025/actascibiolsci.v33i3.7261 Species richness of testate amoebae in different environments from the upper Paraná river floodplain (PR/MS - doi: 10.4025/actascibiolsci.v33i3.7261

    Fábio Amodêo Lansac-Tôha

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available This study evaluated the species richness of testate amoebae in the plankton from different environments of the upper Paraná river floodplain. Samplings were performed at subsurface of pelagic region from twelve environments using motorized pump and plankton net (68 µm, during four hydrological periods. We identified 67 taxa, distributed in seven families and Arcellidae, Difflugiidae and Centropyxidae were the most representative families. Higher values of species richness were observed in the lakes (connected and isolated during the flood pulses. Centropyxis aculeata, Difflugia gramem and D. pseudogramem were frequent throughout the study period. Seasonal variability of species in the channels and isolated lakes was evidenced by beta diversity. Besides that, in the rivers, extreme changes in species composition were verified during the high-water period. Our results highlight the importance of the present study to improve the knowledge about the diversity and geographic distribution of these organisms in Brazil and emphasize the importance of current flow in the displacement of testate amoebae from their preferred habitats, marginal vegetation and sediment.This study evaluated the species richness of testate amoebae in the plankton from different environments of the upper Paraná river floodplain. Samplings were performed at subsurface of pelagic region from twelve environments using motorized pump and plankton net (68 µm, during four hydrological periods. We identified 67 taxa, distributed in seven families and Arcellidae, Difflugiidae and Centropyxidae were the most representative families. Higher values of species richness were observed in the lakes (connected and isolated during the flood pulses. Centropyxis aculeata, Difflugia gramem and D. pseudogramem were frequent throughout the study period. Seasonal variability of species in the channels and isolated lakes was evidenced by beta diversity. Besides that, in the rivers, extreme

  9. An evolutionarily significant unicellular strategy in response to starvation stress in Dictyostelium social amoebae [v1; ref status: indexed, http://f1000r.es/3hg

    Darja Dubravcic

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available The social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum is widely studied for its multicellular development program as a response to starvation and constitutes a model of choice in microbial cooperation studies. Aggregates of up to 106 cells form fruiting bodies containing two cell types: (i dormant spores (~80% that can persist for months in the absence of nutrients, and (ii dead stalk cells (~20% that promote the dispersion of the spores towards nutrient-rich areas. It is often overlooked that not all cells aggregate upon starvation. Using a new quantitative approach based on time-lapse fluorescence microscopy and a low ratio of reporting cells, we have quantified this fraction of non-aggregating cells. In realistic starvation conditions, up to 15% of cells do not aggregate, which makes this third cell fate a significant component of the population-level response of social amoebae to starvation. Non-aggregating cells have an advantage over cells in aggregates since they resume growth earlier upon arrival of new nutrients, but have a shorter lifespan under prolonged starvation. We find that phenotypic heterogeneities linked to cell nutritional state bias the representation of cells in the aggregating vs. non-aggregating fractions, and thus regulate population partitioning. Next, we report that the fraction of non-aggregating cells depends on genetic factors that regulate the timing of starvation, signal sensing efficiency and aggregation efficiency. In addition, interactions between clones in mixtures of non-isogenic cells affect the partitioning of each clone into both fractions. We further test the evolutionary significance of the non-aggregating cell fraction. The partitioning of cells into aggregating and non-aggregating fractions is optimal in fluctuating environments with an unpredictable duration of starvation periods. D. discoideum thus constitutes a model system lying at the intersection of microbial cooperation and bet hedging, defining a new

  10. Molecular survey of occurrence and quantity of Legionella spp., Mycobacterium spp., Pseudomonas aeruginosa and amoeba hosts in municipal drinking water storage tank sediments.

    Lu, J; Struewing, I; Yelton, S; Ashbolt, N

    2015-07-01

    To examine the occurrence and quantity of potential pathogens and an indicator of microbial contamination in the sediments of municipal drinking water storage tanks (MDWSTs), given the absence of such data across the United States. Sediment samples (87 MDWST) from eighteen locations across ten states of the United States were collected and assayed by qPCR for a range of potential enteric and opportunistic microbial pathogens and a sewage-associated Bacteroides marker. Potential opportunistic pathogens dominated, with the highest detection of occurrence (per cent positive detection; average cell equivalence (CE)) being Mycobacterium spp. (88·9%; 6·7 ± 8·5 × 10(4) CE g(-1) ), followed by Legionella spp. (66·7%; 5·2 ± 5·9 × 10(3) CE g(-1) ), Pseudomonas aeruginosa (22·2%; 250 ± 880 CE g(-1) ) and Acanthamoeba spp. (38·9%; 53 ± 70 CE g(-1) ), with no detected Naegleria fowleri. Most enteric pathogens (Campylobacter jejuni, Escherichia coli 0157:H7, Salmonella enterica, Cryptosporidium parvum and Giardia duodenalis) were not detected, except for a trace signal for Campylobacter spp. There was significant correlation between the qPCR signals of Legionella spp. and Acanthamoeba spp. (R(2) = 0·61, n = 87, P = 0·0001). Diverse Legionella spp. including Leg. pneumophila, Leg. pneumophila sg1 and Leg. anisa were identified, each of which might cause legionellosis. These results imply that potential opportunistic pathogens are common within MDWST sediments and could act as a source of microbial contamination, but need downstream growth to be of potential concern. The results imply that opportunistic pathogen risks may need to be managed by regular tank cleaning or other management practices. 2015 The Society for Applied Microbiology.

  11. Survey of Legionella spp. in Mud Spring Recreation Area

    Hsu, B.-M.; Ma, P.-H.; Su, I.-Z.; Chen, N.-S.

    2009-04-01

    Legionella genera are parasites of FLA, and intracellular bacterial replication within the FLA plays a major role in the transmission of disease. At least 13 FLA species—including Acanthamoeba spp., Naegleria spp., and Hartmannella spp.—support intracellular bacterial replication. In the study, Legionellae were detected with microbial culture or by direct DNA extraction and analysis from concentrated water samples or cultured free-living amoebae, combined with molecular methods that allow the taxonomic identification of these pathogens. The water samples were taken from a mud spring recreation area located in a mud-rock-formation area in southern Taiwan. Legionella were detected in 15 of the 34 samples (44.1%). Four of the 34 samples analyzed by Legionella culture were positive for Legionella, five of 34 were positive for Legionella when analyzed by direct DNA extraction and analysis, and 11 of 34 were positive for amoebae-resistant Legionella when analyzed by FLA culture. Ten samples were shown to be positive for Legionella by one analysis method and five samples were shown to be positive by two analysis methods. However, Legionella was detected in no sample by all three analysis methods. This suggests that the three analysis methods should be used together to detect Legionella in aquatic environments. In this study, L. pneumophila serotype 6 coexisted with A. polyphaga, and two uncultured Legionella spp. coexisted with either H. vermiformis or N. australiensis. Of the unnamed Legionella genotypes detected in six FLA culture samples, three were closely related to L. waltersii and the other three were closely related to L. pneumophila serotype 6. Legionella pneumophila serotype 6, L. drancourtii, and L. waltersii are noted endosymbionts of FLA and are categorized as pathogenic bacteria. This is significant for human health because these Legionella exist within FLA and thus come into contact with typically immunocompromised people.

  12. Loss of Cln3 Function in the Social Amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum Causes Pleiotropic Effects That Are Rescued by Human CLN3

    Huber, Robert J.

    2014-01-01

    The neuronal ceroid lipofuscinoses (NCL) are a group of inherited, severe neurodegenerative disorders also known as Batten disease. Juvenile NCL (JNCL) is caused by recessive loss-of-function mutations in CLN3, which encodes a transmembrane protein that regulates endocytic pathway trafficking, though its primary function is not yet known. The social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum is increasingly utilized for neurological disease research and is particularly suited for investigation of protein function in trafficking. Therefore, here we establish new overexpression and knockout Dictyostelium cell lines for JNCL research. Dictyostelium Cln3 fused to GFP localized to the contractile vacuole system and to compartments of the endocytic pathway. cln3− cells displayed increased rates of proliferation and an associated reduction in the extracellular levels and cleavage of the autocrine proliferation repressor, AprA. Mid- and late development of cln3− cells was precocious and cln3− slugs displayed increased migration. Expression of either Dictyostelium Cln3 or human CLN3 in cln3− cells suppressed the precocious development and aberrant slug migration, which were also suppressed by calcium chelation. Taken together, our results show that Cln3 is a pleiotropic protein that negatively regulates proliferation and development in Dictyostelium. This new model system, which allows for the study of Cln3 function in both single cells and a multicellular organism, together with the observation that expression of human CLN3 restores abnormalities in Dictyostelium cln3− cells, strongly supports the use of this new model for JNCL research. PMID:25330233

  13. Loss of Cln3 function in the social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum causes pleiotropic effects that are rescued by human CLN3.

    Robert J Huber

    Full Text Available The neuronal ceroid lipofuscinoses (NCL are a group of inherited, severe neurodegenerative disorders also known as Batten disease. Juvenile NCL (JNCL is caused by recessive loss-of-function mutations in CLN3, which encodes a transmembrane protein that regulates endocytic pathway trafficking, though its primary function is not yet known. The social amoeba Dictyostelium discoideum is increasingly utilized for neurological disease research and is particularly suited for investigation of protein function in trafficking. Therefore, here we establish new overexpression and knockout Dictyostelium cell lines for JNCL research. Dictyostelium Cln3 fused to GFP localized to the contractile vacuole system and to compartments of the endocytic pathway. cln3- cells displayed increased rates of proliferation and an associated reduction in the extracellular levels and cleavage of the autocrine proliferation repressor, AprA. Mid- and late development of cln3- cells was precocious and cln3- slugs displayed increased migration. Expression of either Dictyostelium Cln3 or human CLN3 in cln3- cells suppressed the precocious development and aberrant slug migration, which were also suppressed by calcium chelation. Taken together, our results show that Cln3 is a pleiotropic protein that negatively regulates proliferation and development in Dictyostelium. This new model system, which allows for the study of Cln3 function in both single cells and a multicellular organism, together with the observation that expression of human CLN3 restores abnormalities in Dictyostelium cln3- cells, strongly supports the use of this new model for JNCL research.

  14. Global diversity of free living flatworms (Platyhelminthes, "Turbellaria") in freshwater

    Schockaert, E.R.; Hooge, M.; Sluys, R.; Schilling, S.; Tyler, S.; Artois, T.

    2008-01-01

    This contribution reviews diversity of turbellarian species by biogeographical regions, with comments on species biology. The review draws on the database available at http://www.devbio.umesci.maine.edu/styler/turbellaria. Comparisons between regions suggest that species richness may be at least one

  15. ADVANCES IN ANIMAL WELFARE FOR FREE-LIVING ANIMALS.

    2016-04-01

    Over several decades, animal welfare has grown into its own free-standing field of scientific study, from its early beginnings in laboratory animal research to eventually include exhibited animals and farm animals. While it has always been present to some degree, consideration of animal welfare for free-ranging animals has lagged behind, developing as a field of study in the last 20 yr or so. Part of that increase was that animal welfare legislation was finally applied to studies being done on free-ranging animals. But it is the appreciation by the biologists and veterinarians working on wild animals, in which the quality of their results is largely controlled by the quality of the animals they use in their studies, which has resulted in increased attention to the well-being or welfare of the animals that they use. Other important influences driving the recognition of wildlife welfare have been changes in the public's expectations of how wild animals are dealt with, a shift in focus of wildlife professionals from managing animals that can be hunted or angled to include nongame species, the decrease in participation in hunting and fishing by members of the public, and the entry of large numbers of women into fish and wildlife agencies and departments and into veterinary medicine. Technical improvements have allowed the safe capture and handling of large or dangerous animals as immobilization drugs and equipment have been developed. The increasing use of sedating drugs allows for handling of animals with reduced stress and other impacts. A number of topics, such as toe-clipping, branding, defining which taxa can or cannot feel pain, catch-and-release fishing, and more, remain controversial within wildlife science. How we treat the wild animals that we deal with defines who we are as wildlife professionals, and animal welfare concerns and techniques for free-ranging animals will continue to develop and evolve.

  16. Vitamin D Insufficiency among Free-Living Healthy Young Adults

    Tangpricha, Vin; Pearce, Elizabeth N.; Chen, Tai C.; Holick, Michael F.

    2002-01-01

    Long-term vitamin D insufficiency can cause secondary hyperparathyroidism and osteomalacia (1). In addition, there is increasing evidence that vitamin D may protect against common cancers, such as cancer of the colon (2–4), prostate (5), and breast (6). Young adults aged 17 to 35 years drink inadequate amounts of milk (7) and are concerned about exposure to the sun because of the fear of developing skin cancer (8,9), which increases the risk of vitamin D insufficiency (10). We sought to exami...

  17. Autofluorescence-Free Live-Cell Imaging Using Terbium Nanoparticles.

    Cardoso Dos Santos, M; Goetz, J; Bartenlian, H; Wong, K-L; Charbonnière, L J; Hildebrandt, N

    2018-04-18

    Fluorescent nanoparticles (NPs) have become irreplaceable tools for advanced cellular and subcellular imaging. While very bright NPs require excitation with UV or visible light, which can create strong autofluorescence of biological components, NIR-excitable NPs without autofluorescence issues exhibit much lower brightness. Here, we show the application of a new type of surface-photosensitized terbium NPs (Tb-NPs) for autofluorescence-free intracellular imaging in live HeLa cells. The combination of exceptionally high brightness, high photostability, and long photoluminecence (PL) lifetimes for highly efficient suppression of the short-lived autofluorescence allowed for time-gated PL imaging of intracellular vesicles over 72 h without toxicity and at extremely low Tb-NP concentrations down to 12 pM. Detection of highly resolved long-lifetime (ms) PL decay curves from small (∼10 μm 2 ) areas within single cells within a few seconds emphasized the unprecedented photophysical properties of Tb-NPs for live-cell imaging that extend well beyond currently available nanometric imaging agents.

  18. Factors affecting haematological indices in free-living fish populations

    Lusková, Věra

    1998-01-01

    Roč. 67, č. 4 (1998), s. 249-255 ISSN 0001-7213. [International ichthyohaematology conference /5./. Protivín, 30.11.1998-03.12.1998] R&D Projects: GA ČR GA514/95/0203; GA AV ČR IAA6087704 Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 0.288, year: 1998 http://vfu-www.vfu.cz/acta-vet/vol67/249-98.htm

  19. Free-living ciliates from epiphytic tank bromeliads in Mexico.

    Durán-Ramírez, Carlos Alberto; García-Franco, José Guadalupe; Foissner, Wilhelm; Mayén-Estrada, Rosaura

    2015-02-01

    The ciliate diversity of Mexican bromeliads is poorly known. We studied the ciliate community of two species of epiphytic tank bromeliads from 48 individuals of Tillandsia heterophylla and four of T. prodigiosa. The bromeliads occurred on over 22 tree host species. Samples were collected during 2009 and 2010 in a mountain cloud forest and in two coffee plantations and in a pine-oak forest. The ciliates were identified in live and protargol preparations. We recorded 61 ciliate species distributed in 39 genera grouped in eight classes. Ten species were frequent in the 52 samples (20 ± 3.2) and Leptopharynx bromeliophilus was the most frequent recorded in 25 samples. Thirty-three species are new for the fauna of Mexico, 24 species have been recorded for the first time in tank bromeliads. The classes Spirotrichea, Oligohymenophorea and Colpodea presented the highest number of species, 16, 14, and 12, respectively. Colpoda was the most species-rich genus being present with six species. A low similarity between areas and seasons was obtained with Jaccard's index. We conclude that the two bromeliads species host a rich ciliate diversity whose knowledge contributes to the question of ciliate distribution and specifically, in tank bromeliads. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  20. (Nematoda: Desmodoridae), a brood protecting free-living marine ...

    posterior of the pharyngeal region, in the former species, in the male amphids which are a closed loop in P. waweri and an open-loop in P. ovisetosum. The female of the species protects the developing eggs by attaching them to the ventral mid body anterior and posterior of the vulval region, while in P. ovisetosum eggs are ...

  1. An Assessment of Sub-Meter Scale Spatial Variability of Arcellinida (Testate Lobose Amoebae) Assemblages in a Temperate Lake: Implications for Limnological Studies.

    Steele, Riley E; Nasser, Nawaf A; Patterson, R Timothy; Gregory, Braden R B; Roe, Helen M; Reinhardt, Eduard G

    2018-03-04

    Arcellinida (testate lobose amoebae), a group of benthic protists, were examined from 46 sediment-water interface samples collected from oligotrophic Oromocto Lake, New Brunswick, Canada. To assess (1) assemblage homogeneity at a sub-meter spatial scale and (2) the necessity for collecting samples from multiple stations during intra-lake surveys; multiple samples were collected from three stations (quadrats 1, 2, and 3) across the north basin of Oromocto Lake, with quadrat 1 (n = 16) being the furthest to the west, quadrat 2 (n = 15) situated closer to the center of the basin, and quadrat 3 (n = 15) positioned 300 m south of the mouth of Dead Brook, an inlet stream. Results from cluster analysis and non-metric multidimensional scaling (NMDS) analysis identified two major Arcellinida assemblages, A1 and A2, the latter containing two sub-assemblages (A2a and A2b). Redundancy analysis and variance partitioning results indicated that seven statistically significant environmental variables (K, S, Sb, Ti, Zn, Fe, and Mn) explained 41.5% of the total variation in the Arcellinida distribution. Iron, Ti and K, indicators of detrital runoff, had the greatest influence on assemblage variance. The results of this study reveal that closely spaced samples (~ 10 cm) in an open-water setting are comprised of homogenous arcellinidan assemblages, indicating that replicate sampling is not required. The results, however, must be tempered with respect to the various water properties and physical characteristics that comprise individual lakes as collection of several samples may likely be necessary when sampling multiple sites of a lake basin characterized by varying water depths (e.g., littoral zone vs. open water), or lakes impacted by geogenic or anthropogenic stressors (e.g., eutrophication, or industrial contamination).

  2. Holocene palaeohydrological history of the Tǎul Muced peat bog (Northern Carpathians, Romania) based on testate amoebae (Protozoa) and plant macrofossils

    Cosmin Diaconu, Andrei; Feurdean, Angelica; Lamentowicz, Mariusz; Gałka, Mariusz; Tanţǎu, Ioan

    2016-04-01

    Knowledge of past local vs. regional hydro-climate variability is a priority in climate research. This is because ecosystems and human depend on local climatic conditions and the magnitude of these climate changes is more variable at local and regional rather than at global scales. Ombrotrophic bogs are highly suitable for hydro-climate reconstructions as they are entirely dependent on the water from precipitation. We used stratigraphy, radiocarbon dating, testate amoebae (TA) and plant macrofossils on a peat profile from an ombrotrophic bog (Tǎul Muced) located in the Biosphere Reserve of the Rodna National Park Romania. We performed quantitative reconstruction of the depth to water table (DWT) and pH over the last 8000 years in a continental area of CE Europe. We identified six main stages in the development of the bog based on changes in TA assemblages in time. Wet conditions and pH between 2 and 4.5 were recorded between 4600-2750 and 1300-400 cal. yr BP, by the occurrence of Archerella flavum, Amphitrema wrightianum and Hyalosphenia papilio. This was associated to a local vegetation primarily composed of Sphagnum magellanicum and S. angustifolium. Dry stages and pH of 2.5 to 5 were inferred between 7550-4600, 2750-1300 and -50 cal. yr BP, by the dominance of Nebela militaris, Difflugia pulex and Phryganella acropodia. These overall dry conditions were also connected with increased abundance of Eriophorum vaginatum. The period between 400 and -50 cal. yr BP was characterized by a rapid shift from dry to wet conditions on the surface of the bog. Vegetation shifted from Sphagnum magellanicum to Sphagnum russowii dominated community. Our reconstruction remains in relatively good agreement with other palaeohydrological records from Central Eastern Europe. However, it shows contrasting conditions to others particularly with records from NW Europe. The valuable information regarding bog hydrology offered by our record puts an accent on the need of more regional TA

  3. Unveiling exceptional Baltic bog ecohydrology, autogenic succession and climate change during the last 2000 years in CE Europe using replicate cores, multi-proxy data and functional traits of testate amoebae

    Gałka, Mariusz; Tobolski, Kazimierz; Lamentowicz, Łukasz; Ersek, Vasile; Jassey, Vincent E. J.; van der Knaap, Willem O.; Lamentowicz, Mariusz

    2017-01-01

    We present the results of high-resolution, multi-proxy palaeoecological investigations of two parallel peat cores from the Baltic raised bog Mechacz Wielki in NE Poland. We aim to evaluate the role of regional climate and autogenic processes of the raised bog itself in driving the vegetation and hydrology dynamics. Based on partly synchronous changes in Sphagnum communities in the two study cores we suggest that extrinsic factors (climate) played an important role as a driver in mire development during the bog stage (500-2012 CE). Using a testate amoebae transfer function, we found exceptionally stable hydrological conditions during the last 2000 years with a relatively high water table and lack of local fire events that allowed for rapid peat accumulation (2.75 mm/year) in the bog. Further, the strong correlation between pH and community-weighted mean of testate amoeba traits suggests that other variables than water-table depth play a role in driving microbial properties under stable hydrological conditions. There is a difference in hydrological dynamics in bogs between NW and NE Poland until ca 1500 CE, after which the water table reconstructions show more similarities. Our results illustrate how various functional traits relate to different environmental variables in a range of trophic and hydrological scenarios on long time scales. Moreover, our data suggest a common regional climatic forcing in Mechacz Wielki, Gązwa and Kontolanrahka. Though it may still be too early to attempt a regional summary of wetness change in the southern Baltic region, this study is a next step to better understand the long-term peatland palaeohydrology in NE Europe.

  4. CYP51 is an essential drug target for the treatment of primary amoebic meningoencephalitis (PAM).

    Debnath, Anjan; Calvet, Claudia M; Jennings, Gareth; Zhou, Wenxu; Aksenov, Alexander; Luth, Madeline R; Abagyan, Ruben; Nes, W David; McKerrow, James H; Podust, Larissa M

    2017-12-01

    Primary Amoebic Meningoencephalitis (PAM) is caused by Naegleria fowleri, a free-living amoeba that occasionally infects humans. While considered "rare" (but likely underreported) the high mortality rate and lack of established success in treatment makes PAM a particularly devastating infection. In the absence of economic inducements to invest in development of anti-PAM drugs by the pharmaceutical industry, anti-PAM drug discovery largely relies on drug 'repurposing'-a cost effective strategy to apply known drugs for treatment of rare or neglected diseases. Similar to fungi, N. fowleri has an essential requirement for ergosterol, a building block of plasma and cell membranes. Disruption of sterol biosynthesis by small-molecule inhibitors is a validated interventional strategy against fungal pathogens of medical and agricultural importance. The N. fowleri genome encodes the sterol 14-demethylase (CYP51) target sharing ~35% sequence identity to fungal orthologues. The similarity of targets raises the possibility of repurposing anti-mycotic drugs and optimization of their usage for the treatment of PAM. In this work, we (i) systematically assessed the impact of anti-fungal azole drugs, known as conazoles, on sterol biosynthesis and viability of cultured N. fowleri trophozotes, (ii) identified the endogenous CYP51 substrate by mass spectrometry analysis of N. fowleri lipids, and (iii) analyzed the interactions between the recombinant CYP51 target and conazoles by UV-vis spectroscopy and x-ray crystallography. Collectively, the target-based and parasite-based data obtained in these studies validated CYP51 as a potentially 'druggable' target in N. fowleri, and conazole drugs as the candidates for assessment in the animal model of PAM.

  5. CYP51 is an essential drug target for the treatment of primary amoebic meningoencephalitis (PAM.

    Anjan Debnath

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Primary Amoebic Meningoencephalitis (PAM is caused by Naegleria fowleri, a free-living amoeba that occasionally infects humans. While considered "rare" (but likely underreported the high mortality rate and lack of established success in treatment makes PAM a particularly devastating infection. In the absence of economic inducements to invest in development of anti-PAM drugs by the pharmaceutical industry, anti-PAM drug discovery largely relies on drug 'repurposing'-a cost effective strategy to apply known drugs for treatment of rare or neglected diseases. Similar to fungi, N. fowleri has an essential requirement for ergosterol, a building block of plasma and cell membranes. Disruption of sterol biosynthesis by small-molecule inhibitors is a validated interventional strategy against fungal pathogens of medical and agricultural importance. The N. fowleri genome encodes the sterol 14-demethylase (CYP51 target sharing ~35% sequence identity to fungal orthologues. The similarity of targets raises the possibility of repurposing anti-mycotic drugs and optimization of their usage for the treatment of PAM. In this work, we (i systematically assessed the impact of anti-fungal azole drugs, known as conazoles, on sterol biosynthesis and viability of cultured N. fowleri trophozotes, (ii identified the endogenous CYP51 substrate by mass spectrometry analysis of N. fowleri lipids, and (iii analyzed the interactions between the recombinant CYP51 target and conazoles by UV-vis spectroscopy and x-ray crystallography. Collectively, the target-based and parasite-based data obtained in these studies validated CYP51 as a potentially 'druggable' target in N. fowleri, and conazole drugs as the candidates for assessment in the animal model of PAM.

  6. New data on aetiology of nodular gill disease in rainbow trout, Oncorhynchus mykiss

    Dyková, Iva; Kostka, Martin; Wortberg, F.; Nardy, E.; Pecková, Hana

    2010-01-01

    Roč. 57, č. 3 (2010), s. 157-163 ISSN 0015-5683 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA524/09/0137; GA MŠk LC522 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60220518 Keywords : nodular gill disease * aetiological study * amoebae * Naegleria sp. * fish diseases * aquaculture * Oncorhynchus mykiss Subject RIV: GJ - Animal Vermins ; Diseases, Veterinary Medicine Impact factor: 1.533, year: 2010

  7. Possible environmental sources of Acanthamoeba spp in contact lens wearers.

    Seal, D; Stapleton, F; Dart, J

    1992-01-01

    The water supply and dust samples from the home environment (bathrooms and kitchens) of 50 wearers of contact lenses (CLs) were cultured for the presence of free-living amoebae. CL cases, solutions, and water taps were cultured for bacteria, which amoebae require for growth. Acanthamoeba spp were isolated from water drawn from six bathroom cold water taps (tank supplied), five in the presence of limescale, and from one kitchen cold water tap (mains supplied). There was an association between ...

  8. Vermistella arctica n. sp. Nominates the Genus Vermistella as a Candidate for Taxon with Bipolar Distribution

    Tyml, Tomáš; Kostka, Martin; Ditrich, O.; Dyková, I.

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 63, č. 2 (2016), s. 210-219 ISSN 1066-5234 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GBP505/12/G112 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : actin * biogeography * bipolar distribution * free-living amoebae * phylogeny * polar regions * SSU Subject RIV: EG - Zoology Impact factor: 2.692, year: 2016

  9. Impact of drinking water conditions and copper materials on downstream biofilm microbial communities and legionella pneumophila colonization

    Legionella pneumophila, the medically important species within the genus Legionella, is a concern in engineered water systems. Its ability to amplify within free-living amoebae is well documented, but its interactions/ecology within the microbial community of drinking water biofi...

  10. Ribosomal RNA genes challenge the monophyly of the Hyalospheniidae (Amoebozoa: Arcellinida)

    Lara, Enrique; Heger, Thierry J; Ekelund, Flemming

    2008-01-01

    causes confusion in the phylogeny, taxonomy and the debate on cosmopolitanism of free-living protists. Here we present a SSU rRNA-based phylogeny of the Hyalospheniidae including the most common species. Similar to the filose testate amoebae of the order Euglyphida the most basal clades have a terminal...

  11. Primary Amoebic (Naegleria fowleri Meningoencephalitis Presenting as Status Epilepticus

    A Sharma

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available Primary amebic meningoencephalitis (PAM is a rare entity. Usual presenting features are fever, headache and seizures with meningeal signs and this disease carries high mortality rate. We present a case report of PAM presenting as status epilepticus.

  12. Meiobenthos assemblages in the mekong estuarine system with special focus on free-living marine nematodes

    Quang, Ngo Xuan; Vanreusel, Ann; Smol, Nic; Chau, Nguyen Ngoc

    2010-12-01

    Meiobenthos assemblages in eight estuaries of the Mekong river system were investigated in August 2008 (from the Cua Tieu estuary to the Tran De estuary). In each estuary, one sampling station was established for meiobenthos sampling. Twelve major taxa of meiobenthos were recorded in this estuarine system, including Nematoda, Copepoda, Turbellaria, Polychaeta, Oligochaeta, Tardigrada, Bivalvia, Ostracoda, Amphipoda, Cumacea, Gastrotricha, Gastropoda, and Crustacean Nauplii larvae. The densities of the meiobenthos range from 581 to 3168 inds/10 cm2. Nematodes always occupy the highest numbers with a percentage ranging from 64-99%. There are 135 nematode genera recorded in this study with the following as dominant genera Desmodora, Leptolaimus, Halalaimus, Thalassomonhystera, Theristus, Daptonema, Rhynchonema, Parodontophora, and Oncholaimus. Although the biodiversity of the meiobenthos at higher taxa level is not high compared to other marine environments, the estimates of nematode biodiversity at the genus level indicates high values. The increase in number of genera with increasing sampling intensity illustrate that the diversity is underestimated and would have been higher if the authors had considered a larger number of individuals, more replicates per station, and more sampling stations.

  13. Sleep positions and nocturnal body movements based on free-living accelerometer recordings

    Skarpsno, Eivind Schjelderup; Mork, Paul Jarle; Nilsen, Tom Ivar Lund

    2017-01-01

    Background: In order to establish normative values for body positions and movements during sleep, the objective of this study was to explore the distribution of sleep positions and extent of nocturnal body moments and the association with sex, age, body-mass index (BMI), smoking, alcohol......), but more arm, thigh, and upper-back movements compared to normal-weight participants. Smokers had fewer shifts in body position than nonsmokers (-0.27, 95% CI -0.4 to -0.13). Conclusion: The predominant sleep position in adults is on the side. This preference increases with age and BMI. The extent...

  14. Free-living energy expenditure reduced after deep brain stimulation surgery for Parkinson's disease

    Jørgensen, Hans Ulrik; Werdelin, Lene; Lokkegaard, Annemette

    2012-01-01

    with deep brain stimulation in the subthalamic nucleus (STN-DBS) is now considered the gold standard in fluctuating PD. Many patients experience a gain of weight following the surgery. The aim of this study was to identify possible mechanisms, which may contribute to body weight gain in patients with PD...

  15. A genomic investigation of ecological differentiation between free-living and Drosophila-associated bacteria.

    Winans, Nathan J; Walter, Alec; Chouaia, Bessem; Chaston, John M; Douglas, Angela E; Newell, Peter D

    2017-09-01

    Various bacterial taxa have been identified both in association with animals and in the external environment, but the extent to which related bacteria from the two habitat types are ecologically and evolutionarily distinct is largely unknown. This study investigated the scale and pattern of genetic differentiation between bacteria of the family Acetobacteraceae isolated from the guts of Drosophila fruit flies, plant material and industrial fermentations. Genome-scale analysis of the phylogenetic relationships and predicted functions was conducted on 44 Acetobacteraceae isolates, including newly sequenced genomes from 18 isolates from wild and laboratory Drosophila. Isolates from the external environment and Drosophila could not be assigned to distinct phylogenetic groups, nor are their genomes enriched for any different sets of genes or category of predicted gene functions. In contrast, analysis of bacteria from laboratory Drosophila showed they were genetically distinct in their universal capacity to degrade uric acid (a major nitrogenous waste product of Drosophila) and absence of flagellar motility, while these traits vary among wild Drosophila isolates. Analysis of the competitive fitness of Acetobacter discordant for these traits revealed a significant fitness deficit for bacteria that cannot degrade uric acid in culture with Drosophila. We propose that, for wild populations, frequent cycling of Acetobacter between Drosophila and the external environment prevents genetic differentiation by maintaining selection for traits adaptive in both the gut and external habitats. However, laboratory isolates bear the signs of adaptation to persistent association with the Drosophila host under tightly defined environmental conditions. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  16. Metabolic disruptions induced by reduced ambulatory activity in free-living humans

    Thyfault, John P; Krogh-Madsen, Rikke

    2011-01-01

    Physical inactivity likely plays a role in the development of insulin resistance and obesity; however, direct evidence is minimal and mechanisms of action remain unknown. Studying metabolic outcomes that occur after transitioning from higher to lower levels of physical activity is the best tool t...

  17. Fungi from interior organs of free-living small mammals in Czechoslovakia and Yugoslavia.

    Hubálek, Z; Rosický, B; Otcenásek, M

    1980-01-01

    A total of 308 fungi was isolated from interior organs (lungs, spleen, liver) of 529 small mammals belonging to 21 species, 7 families and 3 orders (Insectivora, Chiroptera, Rodentia), some of these being potentially pathogenic to vertebrates (e.g. Aspergillus flavus, A. fumigatus, Geotrichum candidum, Mucor pusillus, Rhizopus arrhizus). In one vole (Microtus arvalis) captured in South Moravia, adiaspiromycosis (Emmonsia crescens) was demonstrated. Comparison of mycoflora of hair and that of interior organs of wild small mammals revealed that out of the total number of isolates the following fungi were represented in a higher proportion from visceral organs than from the hair: Aspergillus (A. amstelodami, A. flavus, A. repens), Aureobasidium (A. pullulans), Candida, Cladosporium (C. herbarum), Cryptococcus, Fusarium, Gliocladium (G. deliquescens), Helminthosporium, Kloeckera, Mucor (M. fragilis, M. hiemalis, M. pusillus), Paecilomyces marquandii, Penicillium (P. purpurogenum), Phoma, Rhizopus arrhizus, Scopulariopsis (S. candida, S. koningii) and Torulopsis.

  18. Natural cross chlamydial infection between livestock and free-living bird species.

    Jesús A Lemus

    Full Text Available The study of cross-species pathogen transmission is essential to understanding the epizootiology and epidemiology of infectious diseases. Avian chlamydiosis is a zoonotic disease whose effects have been mainly investigated in humans, poultry and pet birds. It has been suggested that wild bird species play an important role as reservoirs for this disease. During a comparative health status survey in common (Falco tinnunculus and lesser (Falco naumanni kestrel populations in Spain, acute gammapathies were detected. We investigated whether gammapathies were associated with Chlamydiaceae infections. We recorded the prevalence of different Chlamydiaceae species in nestlings of both kestrel species in three different study areas. Chlamydophila psittaci serovar I (or Chlamydophila abortus, an ovine pathogen causing late-term abortions, was isolated from all the nestlings of both kestrel species in one of the three studied areas, a location with extensive ovine livestock enzootic of this atypical bacteria and where gammapathies were recorded. Serovar and genetic cluster analysis of the kestrel isolates from this area showed serovars A and C and the genetic cluster 1 and were different than those isolated from the other two areas. The serovar I in this area was also isolated from sheep abortions, sheep faeces, sheep stable dust, nest dust of both kestrel species, carrion beetles (Silphidae and Orthoptera. This fact was not observed in other areas. In addition, we found kestrels to be infected by Chlamydia suis and Chlamydia muridarum, the first time these have been detected in birds. Our study evidences a pathogen transmission from ruminants to birds, highlighting the importance of this potential and unexplored mechanism of infection in an ecological context. On the other hand, it is reported a pathogen transmission from livestock to wildlife, revealing new and scarcely investigated anthropogenic threats for wild and endangered species.

  19. N2 fixer free-living bacteria in two soils of Cauca Valley

    Cardona M, Sigifredo; Sanchez de Prager, Marina

    1998-01-01

    Several soil samples were taken in two agricultural soils, located in Palmira and Ricaurte, Cauca Valley, with the aim of establishing the presence of free life N 2 fixer bacteria and to identify the predominant species. Such soils were chemical and physically characterized and were collected information about their farmer management. For each one of them were counted the N 2 a symbiotic fixers by the dilution method and culture in N free Ashby media. The main bacteria isolated in each soil were, purified and identified. The physical chemistry conditions in both soils favored the presence of such microorganisms because of the pH, closer to neutral and an adequate nutrient content in Ricaurte, the soils was an inceptisol, moderately deep and growing passion fruit Passiflora edulis sims, in which have had an intensive use of chemicals, similar to palmira's soil; there, the microbial population was 5.5 x 107 U.F.C. N 2 fixer bacteria/g of dry soil. In Palmira, it was a mollisol growing tomato Lycopersicon esculentum mill with a population of 5.1 x 107 U.F.C./g of dry soil; both figures indicated the abundance of such microbiological resource and the potential for being explored in sustainable agricultural systems. In Ricaurte it was isolated Azotobacter is a main strain (probably a. chroococcum, according IMI) and in Palmira, Stenotroghomonas maltophilia (IMI), well known as a growth promoter in wheat and sunflower; referred in some cases as lightly pathogen in humans

  20. Diet, life-style and cardiovascular morbidity in the rural, free living population of Elafonisos island

    Chris J. Kapelios

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background There are about 70 small islands in the Aegean and Ionian Sea, of less than 300 Km2 and 5000 inhabitants each, comprising a total population of more than 75,000 individuals with geographical and socioeconomic characteristics of special interest. The objective of the present study was to assess lifestyle characteristics and the state of cardiovascular risk of the population of a small Eastern Mediterranean island, Elafonisos. Methods PERSEAS (Prospective Evaluation of cardiovascular Risk Surrogates in Elafonisos Area Study is an ongoing, population-based, longitudinal survey of cardiovascular risk factors, life-style characteristics and related morbidity/mortality performed in a small and relatively isolated island of the Aegean Sea, named Elafonisos. Validated, closed-ended questionnaires for demographic, socio-economic, clinical and lifestyle characteristics were distributed and analyzed. The MedDietScore, a validated Mediterranean diet score was also calculated. In addition, all participants underwent measurement of anthropometric parameters, blood pressure and a full blood panel for glucose and lipids. Results The analysis included 596 individuals who represented 74.5% of the target population. The mean age of the population was 49.5 ± 19.6 years and 48.2% were males. Fifty participants (8.4% had a history of cardiovascular disease (CVD. The rates of reported diabetes, hypertension, and hypercholesterolemia were 7.7%, 30.9% and 30.9% respectively, with screen-detection of each condition accounting for an additional 4.0%, 12.9%, and 23.3% of cases, respectively. Four hundred and seven individuals (68.3% were overweight or obese, 25% reported being physically inactive and 36.6% were active smokers. The median MedDietScore was 25 [interquartile range: 6, range 12–47] with higher values significantly associated with older age, better education, increased physical activity, absence of history of diabetes and known history of hypercholesterolemia. Conclusions Obesity and traditional risk factors for CVD are highly prevalent among the inhabitants of a small Mediterranean island. Adherence to the traditional Mediterranean diet in this population is moderate, while physical activity is low. There seems to be a need for lifestyle modification programs in order to reverse the increasing cardiovascular risk trends in rural isolated areas of the Mediterranean basin.

  1. The effects of shift work on free-living physical activity and sedentary behavior.

    Loprinzi, Paul D

    2015-07-01

    Although occupation may influence physical activity and shift work schedule may influence cardiovascular disease risk factors, our understanding of the effects of shift work schedule on overall physical activity behavior and sedentary behavior is limited. Data from the 2005-2006 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey were used. Shift work schedule was defined as regular daytime shift, evening, night, rotating or another schedule. Physical activity and sedentary behavior were assessed via accelerometry. 1536 adult participants (≥20years) indicated they currently work and provided data on all study variables. After adjustments, and compared to adults working a regular daytime shift, those working an evening (RR=0.41, p=0.001) and night (RR=0.30, p=0.001) shift, respectively, engaged in 59% and 70% less sustained (bouts) moderate-to-vigorous physical activity, but no differences occurred for overall moderate-to-vigorous physical activity. After adjustments, and compared to those working a regular daytime shift, those working a rotating shift engaged in more light-intensity physical activity (overall: β=26.3min/day; p=0.03; bouts: β=37.5, p=0.01) and less sedentary behavior (β=-28.5min/day, p=0.01). Shift work schedule differentially influences physical activity and sedentary behavior. Physical activity and sedentary intervention strategies may need to be tailored based on shift work schedule. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Vaccination of free-living juvenile wild rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus) against myxomatosis improved their survival.

    Guitton, Jean-Sébastien; Devillard, Sébastien; Guénézan, Michel; Fouchet, David; Pontier, Dominique; Marchandeau, Stéphane

    2008-04-17

    For several decades, the populations of the European wild rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus) have declined, which is partly due to myxomatosis. Vaccination against this disease is expected to contribute to restoration of rabbit populations but the actual impact of myxomatosis is not well known and vaccination might have some negative effects. We analyzed the capture-mark-recapture data obtained in a 4-year field experiment (1991-1994) in a park near Paris, France wherein 300 out of 565 seronegative juvenile rabbits were vaccinated at first capture against myxomatosis with the nontransmissible Dervaximyxo SG33 vaccine. After accounting for weight at first capture, age-class (juvenile/adult), "trap-happiness" and season (spring/autumn) of the capture event, vaccinated rabbits had 1.8-fold greater odds of surviving than the unvaccinated rabbits. The average summer survival risk for vaccinated juveniles was 0.63 (+/-0.08 S.E.) whereas it was 0.48 (+/-0.08 S.E.) for unvaccinated juvenile rabbits.

  3. Sensitivity of pathogenic and free-living Leptospira spp. to UV radiation and mitomycin C

    Stamm, L.V.; Charon, N.W.

    1988-01-01

    The habitats for the two major Leptospira spp. differ. The main habitat of L. biflexa is soil and water, whereas L. interrogans primarily resides in the renal tubules of animals. We investigated whether these two species, along with L. illini (species incertae sedis), differ with respect to their sensitivity to UV radiation. The doses of UV resulting in 37, 10 and 1% survival were determined for representive serovars from each species. L. interrogans serovar pomona was 3.0 to 4.8 times more sensitive to UV than the other Leptospira species under the 37, 10, and 1% survival parameters. In comparison to other bacteria, L. interrogans serovar pomona is among the most sensitive to UV. In a qualitative UV sensitivity assay., L. interrogans serovars were found to be in general more sensitive than L. biflexa serovars. All three species were found to have a photoreactivation DNA repair mechanism. Since organisms that are resistant to UV are often resistant to the DNA cross-linking agent mitomycin C, we tested the relative sensitivity of several Leptospira serovars to this compound. With few exceptions, L. biflexa and L. illini serovars were considerably more resistant to mitomycin C than the L. interrogans serovars. The mitomycin C sensitivity assay could be a useful addition to current characterization tests used to differentiate the Leptospira species

  4. Sensitivity of pathogenic and free-living Leptospira spp. to UV radiation and mitomycin C

    Stamm, L.V.; Charon, N.W.

    1988-03-01

    The habitats for the two major Leptospira spp. differ. The main habitat of L. biflexa is soil and water, whereas L. interrogans primarily resides in the renal tubules of animals. We investigated whether these two species, along with L. illini (species incertae sedis), differ with respect to their sensitivity to UV radiation. The doses of UV resulting in 37, 10 and 1% survival were determined for representive serovars from each species. L. interrogans serovar pomona was 3.0 to 4.8 times more sensitive to UV than the other Leptospira species under the 37, 10, and 1% survival parameters. In comparison to other bacteria, L. interrogans serovar pomona is among the most sensitive to UV. In a qualitative UV sensitivity assay., L. interrogans serovars were found to be in general more sensitive than L. biflexa serovars. All three species were found to have a photoreactivation DNA repair mechanism. Since organisms that are resistant to UV are often resistant to the DNA cross-linking agent mitomycin C, we tested the relative sensitivity of several Leptospira serovars to this compound. With few exceptions, L. biflexa and L. illini serovars were considerably more resistant to mitomycin C than the L. interrogans serovars. The mitomycin C sensitivity assay could be a useful addition to current characterization tests used to differentiate the Leptospira species.

  5. Ticks on captive and free-living wild animals in northeastern Brazil.

    Dantas-Torres, Filipe; Ferreira, Débora R A; de Melo, Louise M; Lima, Polly-Ana C P; Siqueira, Daniel B; Rameh-de-Albuquerque, Luciana C; de Melo, Adriana V; Ramos, Janaina A C

    2010-02-01

    From 2005 to 2009, 147 ticks found on 32 wild animals from or referred to two zoobotanical parks (Parque Zoobotânico Arruda Câmara and Parque Estadual Dois Irmãos) located in northeastern Brazil were identified. Ticks found on two veterinarians working in one of the parks (i.e., Parque Estadual Dois Irmãos), after return from forested areas within the park's territory, were also identified. The following tick-host associations were recorded: Amblyomma fuscum Neumann on Boa constrictor L.; Amblyomma longirostre Koch on Ramphastos vitellinus ariel Vigors and Coendou prehensilis (L.); Amblyomma varium Koch on Bradypus variegates Schinz; Amblyomma rotundatum Koch on Chelonoidis carbonaria (Spix), Chelonoidis denticulata (L.), Micrurus ibiboboca (Merrem), Python molurus bivittatus Kuhl, Iguana iguana (L.) and B. variegatus; Amblyomma nodosum Neumann on Myrmecophaga tridactyla L. and Tamandua tetradactyla (L.); and Rhipicephalus sanguineus (Latreille) on Nasua nasua (L.). The ticks found on the veterinarians were identified as nine Amblyomma larvae. The presence of Am. nodosum in Pernambuco and Am. rotundatum and Am. varium in Paraíba is recorded for the first time and the occurrence of Am. longirostre in Pernambuco is confirmed. Ramphastos vitellinus ariel is a new host record for Am. longirostre whereas M. ibiboboca and B. variegatus are new host records for Am. rotundatum. Finally, the human parasitism by Amblyomma ticks is reported for the first time in Pernambuco, highlighting the potential of tick-borne pathogen transmission in this state.

  6. Nitrogen fixation by free-living organisms in rice soils. Studies with 15N

    Rao, V.R.; Charyulu, P.B.B.N.; Nayak, D.N.; Ramakrishna, C.

    1979-01-01

    Heterotrophic nitrogen fixation as influenced by water regime, organic matter, combined nitrogen and pesticides was investigated in several Indian rice soils by means of the 15 N 2 tracer technique. Soil submergence accelerated nitrogen fixation. Addition of cellulose to both non-flooded and flooded soils enhanced nitrogen fixation. Under submerged conditions, addition of sucrose, glucose and malate in that order stimulated nitrogen fixation in alluvial soil, while only sucrose enhanced nitrogen fixation in laterite soil. Nitrogen fixation in flooded alluvial and laterite soils decreased with increasing concentration of combined nitrogen. Nitrogen fixation was appreciable in acid sulphate and saline soils under both flooded and non-flooded conditions, despite high salinity and acidity. Application of certain pesticides at rates equivalent to recommended field level greatly influenced nitrogen fixation in flooded rice soils. Additions of benomyl (carbamate fungicide) and carbofuran (methyl carbamate insecticide) to alluvial and laterite soils resulted in significant stimulation of nitrogen fixation. Gamma-BHC stimulated nitrogen fixation only in alluvial soil, with considerable inhibition in a laterite soil. Nitrogen fixation by Azospirillum lipoferum was investigated by 15 N 2 . Large variations in 15 N 2 incorporation by A. lipoferum isolated from the roots of several rice cultivars was observed. Specific lines of rice harbouring A. lipoferum with high nitrogenase activity might be selected. Nitrogen fixed by heterotrophic organisms in a complex system such as soil could not be evaluated precisely. Indigenous nitrogen fixation in a flooded soil would be in the range of 5-10 kg N/ha, increasable 3 to 4-fold by appropriate fertilizers and cultural practices

  7. Heterotrophic free-living and particle-bound bacterial cell size in the ...

    PRAKASH

    the heterotrophic bacterial cell size in the various water bodies studied in this investigation. The possible ... seasonal changes in abundance and cell size of heterotrophic ... data, 1995) physiological stress indicated by the presence of small ...

  8. Hematological parameters and prevalence of anemia among free-living elderly in south Brazil

    Vanessa Sgnaolin

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available OBJECTIVE: The aims of this study were to analyze the hematological parameters, the prevalence of anemia and the association between anemia and socioeconomic conditions in an elderly community-based population. METHODS: A population-based study was performed as part of the Multidimensional Study of the Elderly in Porto Alegre, Brazil (EMIPOA. An initial total of 1058 community residents aged 60 years and older were interviewed. Of these, 392 agreed to have a physical evaluation and a blood sample was taken from each. The hematological parameters analyzed in the blood samples included the hemoglobin concentration, mean cell volume (MCV, mean corpuscular hemoglobin concentration (MCHC and red cell distribution width (RDW. The association between the variables and the diagnosis of anemia was assessed using the chi-squared test and a multiple logistic regression model. RESULTS: The overall prevalence of anemia was 12.8%. Anemia was present in 13.7% of women and in 10.4% of men. Normocytic normochromic anemia without anisocytosis was the most common type of anemia (46%. The assessment of erythrocyte morphology showed significant differences between anemic and non-anemic individuals (microcytosis = 12% vs. 1.5%, hypochromia = 40% vs. 8.8%, and anisocytosis = 26% vs. 7%. In the analysis of socioeconomic conditions, significant differences were found in respect to age and race. CONCLUSION: The prevalence of anemia increases with age and is associated with race, microcytosis, hypochromia and anisocytosis. Anemia is not a condition that should be associated only with the aging process, as it may be due to pathological conditions that occur most frequently in this age group. As a result, a diagnosis of anemia warrants adequate clinical attention.

  9. Lunar and temperature effects on activity of free-living desert hamsters ( Phodopus roborovskii, Satunin 1903)

    Scheibler, Elke; Roschlau, Corinna; Brodbeck, David

    2014-10-01

    Time management of truly wild hamsters was investigated in their natural habitat in Alashan desert, Inner Mongolia, China during summer of 2009, 2010, and 2012. Duration of activity outside their burrows, duration of foraging walks, and nocturnal inside stays were analyzed with the aim to elucidate impact of moon, ambient, and soil temperature. Animal data were determined using radio frequency identification (RFID) technique; for that purpose, individuals were caught in the field and marked with passive transponders. Their burrows were equipped with integrated microchip readers and photosensors for the detection of movements into or out of the burrow. Lunar impact was analyzed based on moon phase (full, waning, new, and waxing moons) and moon disk size. A prolongation of aboveground activity was shown with increasing moon disk size (Spearman ρ = 0.237; p = 0.025) which was caused by earlier onsets (ρ =-0.161; p = 0.048); additionally, foraging walks took longer (Pearson r = 0.037; p = 0.037). Temperature of different periods of time was analyzed, i.e., mean of whole day, of the activity phase, minimum, and maximum. Moreover, this was done for the current day and the previous 3 days. Overall, increasing ambient and soil temperatures were associated with shortening of activity by earlier offsets of activity and shorter nocturnal stays inside their burrows. Most influential temperatures for activity duration were the maximum ambient temperature, 3 days before (stepwise regression analysis R = 0.499; R 2 = 0.249; F = 7.281; p = 0.013) and soil temperature during activity phase, 1 day before ( R = 0.644; R 2 = 0.283; F = 7.458; p = 0.004).

  10. Structure of nucleoli in first-order spermatocytes of selected free-living animal species.

    Andraszek, Katarzyna; Gryzińska, Magdalena; Ceranka, Mariola; Larisch, Agnieszka

    2015-10-01

    Nucleoli are the product of the activity of nucleolar organizer regions (NOR) in certain chromosomes. Their main functions are the formation of ribosomal subunits from ribosomal protein molecules and the transcription of genes encoding rRNA. Nucleoli are present in the nuclei of nearly all eukaryotic cells because they contain housekeeping genes. The size and number of nucleoli gradually decrease during spermatogenesis. Some of the material originating in the nucleolus probably migrates to the cytoplasm and takes part in the formation of chromatoid bodies (CB). Nucleolus fragmentation and CB assembly take place at the same stage of spermatogenesis. CB are involved in the formation of the acrosome, the migration of mitochondria to the midpiece, and the formation of the sperm tail fibrous sheath. The aim of the study was to characterize the nucleoli in the early prophase of spermatogenesis in the wild boar and the roe deer. The roe deer cells have larger nucleoli and a larger cell nucleus than the wild boar cells. The area of the nucleolus as a percentage of the total area of the nucleus was larger as well. The coefficients of variation for all parameters were higher in the roe deer. In the wild boar cells the nucleoli were mainly regularly shaped. The size of the nucleolus and the nucleus of the spermatocyte is a species-specific trait associated with karyotype and the number of nucleolar organizer regions in a given species. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. Low cost label-free live cell imaging for biological samples

    Seniya, C.; Towers, C. E.; Towers, D. P.

    2017-02-01

    This paper reports the progress to develop a practical phase measuring microscope offering new capabilities in terms of phase measurement accuracy and quantification of cell:cell interactions over the longer term. A novel, low cost phase interference microscope for imaging live cells (label-free) is described. The method combines the Zernike phase contrast approach with a dual mirror design to enable phase modulation between the scattered and un-scattered optical fields. Two designs are proposed and demonstrated, one of which retains the common path nature of Zernike's original microscopy concept. In both setups the phase shift is simple to control via a piezoelectric driven mirror in the back focal plane of the imaging system. The approach is significantly cheaper to implement than those based on spatial light modulators (SLM) at approximately 20% of the cost. A quantitative assessment of the performance of a set of phase shifting algorithms is also presented, specifically with regard to broad bandwidth illumination in phase contrast microscopy. The simulation results show that the phase measurement accuracy is strongly dependent on the algorithm selected and the optical path difference in the sample.

  12. Validity of physical activity monitors in adults participating in free-living activities

    Berntsen, S; Hageberg, R; Aandstad, A

    2010-01-01

    expenditure differently compared with indirect calorimetry, was also determined. Material and methods The activity monitors and a portable oxygen analyser were worn by 14 men and 6 women for 120 min doing a variety of activities of different intensities. Resting metabolic rate was measured with indirect......Background For a given subject, time in moderate to very vigorous intensity physical activity (MVPA) varies substantially among physical activity monitors. Objective In the present study, the primary objective, whether time in MVPA recorded with SenseWear Pro(2) Armband (Armband; Body......Reg, respectively. ActiReg (p = 0.004) and ActiGraph (p = 0.007) underestimated energy expenditure in MVPA, and all monitors underestimated total energy expenditure (by 5% to 21%). Conclusions Recorded time in MVPA and energy expenditure varies substantially among physical activity monitors. Thus, when comparing...

  13. Making Health Easier: Tobacco Free Living in Santa Clara, CA PSA (:60)

    2013-05-21

    Instead of walking through clouds of smoke, students in a California community college can now breathe clean air. A college health nurse made it happen with the help of students, faculty, and partners.  Created: 5/21/2013 by National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion (NCCDPHP).   Date Released: 5/21/2013.

  14. Comparative Metabolism of Free-living Bodo saltans and Parasitic Trypanosomatids

    Opperdoes, F. R.; Butenko, A.; Flegontov, P.; Yurchenko, V.; Lukeš, Julius

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 63, č. 5 (2016), s. 657-678 ISSN 1066-5234 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA14-23986S Grant - others:EU COST Action CM1307 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : adaptation * Leishmania * Leptomonas * lateral gene transfer * parasitism * Phytomonas * Trypanosoma Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology Impact factor: 2.692, year: 2016

  15. Toxic elements in free-living freshwater fish, water and sediments in Poland

    Szkoda Józef

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Samples for analysis were collected from 10 areas, including the major Polish rivers and lakes, with different sources of environmental pollution (industrial, municipal, and farming. The materials was taken from the lakes of Mazury, located in a non-industrialised region, from the Brda River, an area impacted by pig farms, from the lakes of Lipczyno Wielkie/Pomerania, from the Wkra River, an area impacted by poultry farms, from the Dunajec River at the Roznowski Reservoir, from the Vistula River at Cracow and Warsaw, from the Odra River at Wroclaw and the Warta River estuary, and also from Rybnik Power Station Reservoir. Concentrations of Pb, Cd, Hg, and As were analysed in 397 fish muscle and 128 sediment samples using an atomic absorption spectrometry technique. The analytical procedures were covered by a quality assurance programme. It was demonstrated that the average concentrations of lead, cadmium, and arsenic in fish were in the low hundredths and thousandths of a mg/kg and never exceeded permitted limits established for food. Higher values of these elements were found in fish from bodies of water located in the zone of influence of large urban agglomerations, especially the Cracow region. High concentrations of lead and cadmium were also found in Vistula River sediments near Cracow, where the maximum values were 134.10 mg/kg and 21.24 mg/kg dry weight for lead and cadmium respectively. The average concentration of mercury in a predatory fish muscle (0.179 mg/kg was almost twice as high as in the omnivorous fish (0.103 mg/kg. Only a single fish sample exceed