Brazilian journal of biology = Revista brasleira de biologia

Publications
Treatment of human breast epithelial cells MCF-10F with 17-β-estradiol has been reported to result in E2-transformed cells which have given rise to highly invasive C5 cells that in turn generate tumors in SCID mice. From these tumors, various cell lines, among which C5-A6-T6 and C5-A8-T8, were obtained. Although different phases of the tumorigenesis process in this model have been studied in molecular biology and image analysis assays, no cytological data on apoptotic ratios and mitotic abnormalities have been established to accompany the various steps leading to 17-β-estradiol-treated MCF-10F cells to tumorigenesis. Here we detected that the apoptotic ratio decreases with the transformation and tumorigenesis progress, except for the tumor cell line C5-A8-T8, probably on account of its more intense proliferation rate and a more rapid culture medium consumption. Increased frequency of mitotic abnormalities contributed by triple- and tetrapolar metaphases, and by lagging chromosomes and chromosome bridges observed at the anaphase found by transformation and tumorigenesis progress. However, no difference was found under these terms when the C5-A6-T6 and C5-A8-T8 tumor cell lines were compared to each other. Present findings are in agreement with the nuclear instability and enrichment of dysregulated genes in the apoptotic process promoted by transformation and tumorigenesis in 17-β-estradiol-treated MCF-10F cells.
 
Representation of the morphological characters used for the morphometry. 1) Total length of head; 2) Head width; 3) Longitudinal length of eye; 4) Length of anterior femur; 5) Length of medium femur; 6) Length of posterior femur; 7) Width of the largest abdominal segment; 8) Length of the largest abdominal segment; 9) Length of lateral spine of the eighth abdominal segment; 10) Length of lateral spine of the ninth abdominal segment; 11) Total length of the pre-mentum; 12) Distal width of the prementum; and 13) Length of the lateral lobe. 
Axis scores generated in PCA made with the logarithms of the morphological variables. In this work this axis can be considered as a factor of body size. Open circles are the species that use preferentially macrophytes and black circles are species that use preferentially the bottom substrate. 
Results of t-tests with the body size and with the residuals of morphological variables. Within the second and third columns are presented the averages for each species group. The marked values indicate a significant difference. 
Values of the variables loads in the axis generated by the Principal Components Analysis, the proportion of the vari- ance explained by the axis and the values of R 2 of regression between the scores of PCA and the variables logarithms. 
In the lakes of the Middle Rio Doce, Minas Gerais (MG), two groups of larval Libellulidae are distinguished by preferences of habitat use: one uses mainly aquatic macrophytes and the other uses the bottom substrate. The goal of this work was to verify if there is a morphological distinction between the two groups of species. Thirteen body measures were taken from the larvae and analyzed. No difference was found between the two groups of species regarding the body size, but shape differences were observed for two morphological variables. The species that use mainly macrophytes tend to have larger relative measures of the labium and smaller measures of the abdomen width. Advantages in resource obtainment and in vulnerability to predation are probably the explanations for the morphological divergence among these larval groups.
 
The red hybrid tilapia, Oreochromis niloticus (Linnaeus, 1758) x O. mossambicus (Peters, 1852) is a fertile hybrid used in the semi-intensive level of fish culture in the Northeast of Brazil. It is a territorial cichlid and is highly aggressive towards conspecifics during the breeding season. The purpose of this study was to investigate and describe the aggressive behaviour displayed by the males of this hybrid in non-reproductive and reproductive contexts. Behavioural observations revealed that aggression displayed by the reproductive males of red hybrid tilapia included threatening, undulation, parallel, lateral and frontal attacks, chasing, escape and submission. Possession of a territory influenced male aggressiveness, which was more intense in their own territory than that observed in a neutral situation. The males built nests, irrespective of female presence. All the behavioural patterns were in accordance with those previously described for one parental species, the Nile tilapia, O. niloticus.
 
Growth representation in height for the two size classes (M and L) of Pteria hirundo during the experimental period. 
Average monthly temperature with respective deviations for the sea water at the experimental site. 
There are no records in Brazil for the culture of Pteridae family oysters, genus Pteria and Pinctada. The intermediate culture can be considered one of the critical stages during the oyster farming. The changes in life conditions from a semi-closed environment provided by the collector to the structures utilized for the growth represents a considerable stress factor to which the animals are subjected. The goal of the present study was to evaluate the growth and survival of the pearl oyster Pteria hirundo (Linnaeus, 1758) kept in intermediate lanterns. Seeds of P. hirundo, obtained through larviculture carried out at the Marine Molluscs Laboratory (UFSC), southern Brazil were detached from the collectors, transferred and kept in an intermediate culture system (oyster lantern). During 6 months, growth (dorso-ventral height - DVH in mm) and survival (%) were evaluated. Two size classes were tested: medium (M), between 3.4 and 4.4 mm, and large (L), bigger than 4.5 mm. The density of occupation in each floor of the lantern was 50%. At the end of the experiment, the survivals observed were 90 and 94% for the sizes M and L, respectively. Medium juveniles of Pteria hirundo had an average (Std) increase of 16.1 (±4.38) mm in the dorso-ventral height, and large juveniles an average increase of 11.4 (±3.77) mm after six months of experiment. The results observed during the intermediate stage of cultivation indicate that Pteria hirundo presents survival and growth similar to other species of pearl oysters traditionally used in the pearl industry in several countries.
 
The geometric morphometric analysis of the shell of Caretta caretta hatchlings revealed that morphological variations may be related to incubation duration. Based on the overlapping of anatomical landmarks of the carapace and the plastron, it was possible to discriminate hatchlings from slow and fast developing clutches. Carapace and plastron of hatchlings from nests where incubation lasted less than 55 days are rounder as compared to the hatchlings from nests where incubation took 67 days. The differences observed in shell shape in terms of incubation duration were statistically significant, though carapace and plastron shape overlapping was observed in several individuals. Our results indicate that the incubation duration explains only a small part of the total variation in the shell shape as a whole. Yet, in spite of the low discriminant function coefficient, cross-validation tests indicated that 84.7% and 77.8% of the hatchlings were correctly categorised concerning the carapace and plastron, when the descriptive variable is incubation duration.
 
Teleostean fins when partially amputated suffer a regenerative process called epimorphic regeneration, characterized by the following stages: healing, based on the formation of a multistratified epidermal layer, the formation of a mass of pluripotent cells known as blastema, the differentiation of these cells, the synthesis and disposition of the extracellular matrix, morphological growth and restoration. The epidermis has a fundamental role in the regenerative process of fish fins, as the healing time of this structure leads it to a faster regenerative process and it also works as a defense against the external environment. In this sense, due to the fast regeneration shown by the epidermis, the aim of this paper is to study the histology of the regenerative dynamics of the carp fin tail (Cyprinus carpio), under the light and transmission electron microscope. Epidermic regeneration begins right in the first hours after the fin amputation and it continues throughout the regenerative process. After 24 hours, an apical epidermal cap is established. Cytoplasmatic prolongations and intercellular junctions are observed and the cells of the basal layer of the epidermis change from the cubic form to the cylindrical, due to the development of the cytoplasmatic organelles responsible for the synthesis of the basal membrane, lost after amputation. These results show the importance of histological studies in regenerative processes. We believe that the association of molecular biology with histological studies can throw further light onto these regenerative dynamics.
 
Specific respiration rate (mL O 2 .h-1 .g-1 ) estimated every 5 days, during a period of 30 days acclimation in a laboratory. Average values and confidence interval of 95%. The bars indicate rates which are significantly similar, according to the Tukey test.
a) Average daily increase in length (mm. day-1 ); and b) O:N ratio for the mussels P. perna, in different size classes, after maintenance in a laboratory for a period of 15 to 20 days. Average values and confidence interval of 95%. The bar indicates rates which are significantly similar, according to the Tukey test.
Physiological studies of the mussel Perna perna in Brazil are almost 30 years behind those of other, more exhaustively investigated species, such as Mytilus edulis. Little is known about the variations in physiological rates due to size and the consequences of maintaining P. perna in laboratory conditions. This work investigated the variations in respiration, clearance, excretion and absorption efficiency rates of P. perna, classified by size and acclimatized in a laboratory, monitoring the mussels respiration rates and biometry over a period of 30 days, in laboratory conditions. The respiration, clearance and excretion rates presented an allometric relation with the dry weight of the organisms, with b values of 0.66, 0.48 and 0.91 respectively. On the other hand, these same rates, when considered by weight (specific rates) showed a relationship that was inverse to the size of the organisms. Only the absorption efficiency was independent of the weight of the mussel. In terms of acclimatization, it was observed that it takes 10 days for the respiration rate of the mussel P. perna to stabilize in laboratory conditions, after which it follows a routine metabolism.
 
Chelonia mydas is a sea turtle that feeds and nests on the Brazilian coast and a disease called fibropapillomatosis is a threat to this species. Because of this, it is extremely necessary to determine a methodology that would enable the analysis of blood leukocyte function in these sea turtles. In order to achieve this aim, blood samples were collected from C. mydas with or without fibropapillomas captured on the São Paulo north coast. Blood samples were placed in tubes containing sodium heparin and were transported under refrigeration to the laboratory in sterile RPMI 1640 cell culture medium. Leukocytes were separated by density gradient using Ficoll-PaqueTM Plus, Amershan Biociences. The following stimuli were applied in the assessment of leukocyte function: Phorbol Miristate-Acetate (PMA) for oxidative burst activity evaluation and Zymosan A (Saccharomyces cerevisiae) Bio Particles, Alexa Fluor 594 conjugate for phagocytosis evaluation. Three cell populations were identified: heterophils, monocytes and lymphocytes. Monocytes were the cells responsible for phagocytosis and oxidative burst.
 
Neighbor-joining tree showing genetic relationships among 42 Pampas deers based on Nei and Li (1979) pairwise genetic distance. ▲E n = Emas National Park individuals, ○P n = Pantanal individuals. Bootstrap values below 50% are not shown. 
The Pampas deer (Ozotoceros bezoarticus) is one of the most endangered Neotropical cervid with populations that have been drastically reduced to small and isolated ones, mainly because of its habitat destruction. Random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) markers were used to analyze population divergence and genetic variation within and between two populations corresponding to distinct subspecies. The RAPD markers displayed substantial genetic variation with all animals possessing unique RAPD phenotypes over 105 polymorphic bands produced by 15 primers. An analysis of molecular variance (AMOVA) and a neighbor-joining cluster analysis were performed to assess levels of differentiation between populations. No differentiation was recorded and about 96.0% (P<0.00001) of the total variance was attributable to variation within populations. This result is quite distinct from data obtained by the analysis of the mtDNA control region, and is discussed on the basis of genetic differences between the different markers and the male-biased dispersal patterns generally observed in the mammal species. The data presented herein are potentially useful for future taxonomic and genetic studies in this species, for the monitoring of the genetic variation observed within these populations, and for the development of management guidelines for its conservation.
 
The presence of pollutants in the ocean may affect different physiological parameters of animals. Oxygen consumption and ammonia excretion were evaluated in D-shaped larvae of mussels (Perna perna) exposed to zinc sulphate (ZnSO(4)) and benzene (C(6)H(6)). When compared to the control group, both pollutants presented a significant reduction in oxygen consumption. A reduction in the ammonia excretion was also observed, both for ZnSO(4) and C(6)H(6) and also in the oxygen consumption. The results indicate that anaerobic metabolism may occur at the beginning of P. perna mussels development, as observed in veliger larvae. The O:N ratio under experimental conditions showed low values indicating that catabolism in veliger larvae was predominantly proteic.
 
a) Old male Saimiri sciureus presenting a clear peri-auricular coat, b) female Saimiri ustus five years old, starting to present darkening of peri-auricular hairs, and c) Aged female Saimiri sciureus presenting a clear spot of blackish hair in the peri-auricular region of the external ear.  
Causes and implications of sexual dimorphism have been studied in several different primates using a variety of morphological characters such as body weight, canine length, coat color and ornamentation. Here we describe a peculiar coat color characteristic in the squirrel monkey that is present only in adult females over five years old and which increases with age. Neither males nor young animals manifest this phenomenon, which is characterized by a spot of black hairs located anteriorly to the external ear (pinna). This characteristic could be used to discriminate adult females of Saimiri sciureus in the wild without the need of capture techniques.
 
We studied the role of white-lipped and collared peccaries (Tayassu pecari and Pecari tajacu) as seed predators and dispersers in the Atlantic rainforest of Brazil. The Atlantic rainforest ecosystem is highly threatened and has experienced dramatic declines in its populations of large mammals. Local extinctions can disrupt essential plant-animal interactions such as seed dispersion and seed predation. We tracked seeds from time of consumption to germination to assess the direct impact peccaries have on seed survival. We offered fruits of 20 species found in the Atlantic rainforest to the peccaries. Seeds were categorised as intact, scarified, ingested or defecated, and germination tests were performed. The overall impact by both peccary species was similar. Seeds were sometime scarified by mastication, always with fatal consequences. Most seeds that were consumed were destroyed during ingestion and digestion. Only small seeds (<10 mm) were found in the feces and germination tests suggest a positive effect from the passage through the guts. Peccaries clearly have a double role as both seed predators and as small seeds dispersers, which is a specialised role within the granivore/frugivore community of the Atlantic rainforest.
 
Oxygen of tropical freshwater environments fluctuates drastically. Eutrophic lakes and ponds of warm waters frequently reach very low oxygen concentrations. This is the most common habitat of the banded knife fish "tuvira" Gymnotus carapo. This electric fish is reported to present bimodal breathing to cope with low environmental oxygen. Biochemical responses can be also observed in fishes facing hypoxia but none were studied in tuvira. In the present study, haematological and metabolic changes were investigated in two groups of fish exposed to hypoxia for 1 and 3 hours. Haematocrit, red blood cells and haemoglobin concentration indicated erythrocyte release from hematopoietic organs and swelling of red blood cells. Glycogen, glucose, lactate, pyruvate, and amino acids were quantified in liver, kidney and white muscle. The metabolic profile of G. carapo to cope with hypoxia suggested liver gluconeogenesis probably supported by proteolysis. The kidney and liver presented the same biochemical trend suggesting similar metabolic role for both organs. Glucogenolysis followed by glucose fermentation and protein mobilisation was observed in the white muscle. The air breathing behaviour of tuvira works in parallel with metabolism to prevent damages from hypoxia. Metabolic adjustments are observed when the air taking is avoided.
 
Armadillos of the species Dasypus novemcinctus have been used as an experimental model of leprosy. Besides non-human primates, they are the only species naturally infected with Mycobacterium leprae and when experimentally inoculated, reproduce the lepromatous form of the disease producing large quantities of bacilli. This species has been maintained in captivity by numerous researchers and specific housing and feeding requirements have been developed to guarantee their survival during long experimental periods. In the 'Lauro de Souza Lima' Institute, armadillos receive dog food, ground beef, boiled eggs and vitamin C. However, despite the balanced diet, anemia has been observed in some captive animals, especially in armadillos inoculated with M. leprae in advanced stages of infection. Thus, the objective of the present study was to evaluate the effect of iron sulfate supplementation in the feed provided for armadillos, both inoculated and non-inoculated with M. leprae, by means of the evaluation of their hematological profile. Fourteen armadillos received 10 mg/animal of iron sulfate (Hematofer(R)) diluted in sterile water mixed with their daily feed for 50 days. Hemograms and serum iron dosages for each armadillo were performed before and after supplementation. The hematocrit values increased significantly after iron supplementation, both in armadillos inoculated and non-inoculated with M. leprae. It is possible that the amount of iron in the feed is insufficient for the formation of hemoglobin, leading to microcytic anemia. Dietary supplementation with iron sulfate reversed this state, showing the importance of understanding the metabolism of exotic species for their maintenance in captivity, and thus ensuring their well-being.
 
To investigate whether source proximity or bioavailability is the major factor controlling both Hg concentration and Hg speciation in marine fishes, total- and organic-Hg content in muscle and liver tissues from different populations of Cephalopholis fulva (piraúna) from inshore and offshore waters of the Brazilian northeastern coast were analyzed. Average total-Hg in muscle (104 ng x g(-1) w.w.) and liver (2,865 ng x g(-1) w.w.) tissues, as well as organic-Hg concentrations in muscle (169 ng x g(-1) w.w.) and liver (1,038 ng x g(-1) w.w.), were much higher in the offshore population of C. fulva than in the inshore ones. In the inshore population total-Hg and organic-Hg average concentrations in muscle tissue were similar and reached only 49 ng x g(-1) w.w., while in liver they reached 412 ng x g(-1) w.w. for total-Hg and 180 ng x g(-1) w.w., for organic-Hg. Concentrations of both Hg species in the two populations were higher in liver than in muscle. The average percentage contribution of organic-Hg to the total Hg content was higher in muscle (98-100%) than in liver (42-53%), but similar between the two populations. Total-Hg and organic-Hg concentrations in muscle and liver from the offshore population showed significant (P < 0.05) positive correlation with fish length. However, in the inshore population only the total-Hg and organic-Hg in muscle tissues correlate significantly with fish size. Although the coastal environments are enriched in total Hg relative to open waters, the significant higher Hg concentrations in the offshore population of C. fulva and the significant correlation found between organic-Hg in liver with fish size suggest higher bioavailability of Hg in offshore waters relative to inshore ones.
 
Histological sections of Nodipecten nodosus female gonad showing the different stages of the reproductive cycle: (a) gametogenesis; (b) initial pre-spawning; (c) advanced pre-spawning; (d) initial spawning; (e) advanced spawning; (f) spent. ct: connective tissue; oo: oogonia; wf: wall follicles; oc: oocytes; if: intra-follicle space; it: inter-follicular space (few); rg: remaining gametes. The bar represents 100 micra.
Temperature of the sea water during the experiment and the maturation stages of the animals (N. nodosus) determined monthly (n = 4). Stages: (a) gametogenesis; (b) initial pre-spawning; 09(c) advanced pre-spawning; (d) initial spawning; (e) advanced spawning.
Astaxanthin quantity in the female portion of the scallop N.nodosus gonad in the four stages of the reproductive cycle: (a) gametogenesis; (b) initial prespawning; (c) advanced pre-spawning; (d) initial spawning; (e) advanced spawning; (f) spent.
Histological description of the female portion of the gonad stages in the reproductive cycle of the scallop Nodipecten nodosus.
This work describes the gametogenic cycle of the scallop Nodipecten nodosus kept in a culture system. To this end, during one year, samples were taken from the broodstocks every 30 days to be submitted to macroscopic and microscopic analyses and to measure the amount of astaxanthin. To perform the microscopic evaluation, 5 micro slices from the median portion of the female part of the gonad were submitted to the pattern methodology for histological analyses with paraffin and HE coloration. The remaining portion of the female gonad was lyophilised to extract and quantify the levels of astaxanthin using HPLC. The microscopic analyses revealed four well defined stages for the reproductive cycle. Analyses of data taken throughout the year indicated preferential spawning periods from December to January and from July to September. The astaxanthin analyses showed higher amounts of this carotenoid during the advanced pre-spawning and the initial spawning periods than during gametogenesis, initial pre-spawning, advanced spawning, and the spent stages. According to these results, it was possible to establish a descriptive table of the sexual stages of the female portion of the gonad and the amount of astaxanthin in the sexual stage of the scallop Nodipecten nodosus.
 
A conglomerate of small, rigid, fusiform spicules known as actinotrichia sustains the edge of tail fins of teleost. After amputation, these structures show an extremely fast regenerative capacity. In this study we observed the effect of a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug, naproxen, used in the treatment of degenerative articular diseases, during the process of actinotrichia regeneration. For this purpose, regenerating tissue from animals in contact with the drug was submitted to histochemical and ultrastructural analysis in comparison to tissue from animals under normal conditions, i.e., not in contact with the drug in question. Actinotrichia regeneration was similar in both animals, indicating that naproxen, at the dose used in the present study, did not interfere with actinotrichia synthesis during the regenerative process of the tail fin. This could be because naproxen did not influence the expression of the genes required for the regeneration process, such as the Sonic hedgehog (Shh) gene, which is involved in actinotrichia formation.
 
Visiting behaviour on Jatropha mutabilis (a -c) and Jatropha mollissima (d, e) flowers by Apis mellifera at Estação Biológica de Canudos, Canudos, Bahia state, northeastern Brazil. a) arrival on branch with staminate flowers; b, e) on pistillate flowers; and c, d) on staminate flowers.  
Results of tests for the efficiency of the exotic bee Apis mellifera in pollinating Jatropha mollissima and Jatropha mutabilis in Canudos, Bahia state, northeastern Brazil, from March to April 2006. 
Previous studies have shown the superior competitive ability of honeybees compared with native bees in the exploitation of floral resources and nesting sites besides their low efficiency in pollinating native plant species. However, there is little evidence of the effect of this invading species on autochthonous plant populations in natural environments. Thus experiments were performed to test the pollination efficiency of honeybees in two species of Jatropha (Euphorbiaceae), J. mollissima (Pohl) Baill. and J. mutabilis (Pohl) Baill., after a single flower visitation. Samplings were carried out between March and April 2006 in a hyperxerophilous shrub-arboreal Caatinga at Estação Biológica de Canudos, Bahia (9º 56´ 34" S, 38º 59´ 17" W), the property of Fundação Biodiversitas. Apis mellifera was efficient at pollinating J. mollissima (100%) and J. mutabilis (85%). This high efficiency may be explained by 1) the simple floral characteristics of both plant species, which facilitate access to the sexual organs of the plant; and 2) the body size of A. mellifera that fits the flower's dimensions.
 
Total carotenoids (µg.mg-1 ) extracted from female gonads of scallop Nodipecten nodosus, according to the acetone (Ac = O):hexane (Hex) ratio in the extracting solutions and the extraction times. Ac = O:Hex: (a) 1:1, (b) 1:3, (c) 1:5, and (d) 2:3. 
Exhaustive extraction of total carotenoid content (µg.mg-1 ) of female gonad samples of scallop Nodipecten nodosus following a sequential extraction protocol (10x) with Ac = O:Hex (1:3) extracting solution. 
In marine bivalve mollusks, unsaturated molecules called carotenoids are present in the natural diet and play an important role in different biological process, especially in reproduction. In order to gain more insights into these compounds in Nodipecten nodosus it was necessary to develop a suitable protocol for extraction of carotenoids from the gonads. Female gonads of cultured scallops (75 mm length) were lyophilized and macerated in liquid N2. To verify the effect of composition in organosolvents on the extracting solutions, two organic solvents were tested: acetone and hexane (Ac = O:Hex) at four ratios, 1:1, 1:3, 1:5, and 2:3, in four static extraction times: 0, 5, 10, and 15 minutes. Total carotenoids and astaxanthin contents were determined in the crude extracts by UV-visible spectrophotometry and high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC), respectively. Triplicate aliquots of 50 mg were used for each treatment. The results indicated that the best single extraction (0.312 +/- 0.016 microg carotenoids/mg) was attained with Ac = O: Hex 1:3, for 15 minutes. Through exhaustive extraction methodology (10x), a superior yield (0.41 +/- 0.001 microg carotenoids/mg) was obtained from a gonad sample in comparison to the highest value found for a single extraction. Astaxanthin content was reduced by 8.6% in carotenoid extract preservation assay, i.e., -18 degrees C, 26 days incubation, under N2 atmosphere.
 
Result of the histoenzymologic reactions of the sample (insertion of the medial region of deep) of biceps brachii muscle of capuchin monkeys. A-) m-ATPase pH10.35; B-) m-ATPase pH 4.55; C-) m-ATPase ph 4.35 and D-) NDH-Tr. The number 1 indicates the type SO fibres, number 2 indicates the type FOG fibres and number 3 indicates the type FG fibres. 
Mean and standard deviation of the percentage (%) of the different fibre types found in the samples of the biceps brachii muscle of the capuchin monkey.
Mean and standard deviation of the area (μm 2 ) of the different types of fibres found in the different regions of the biceps brachii muscle of the capuchin monkey.
A general analysis of the behaviour of "Cebus" shows that when this primate moves position to feed or perform another activity, it presents different ways of locomotion. This information shows that the brachial biceps muscle of this animal is frequently used in their locomotion activities, but it should also be remembered that this muscle is also used for other development activities like hiding, searching for objects, searching out in the woods, and digging in the soil. Considering the above, it was decided to research the histoenzimologic characteristics of the brachial biceps muscle to observe whether it is better adpted to postural or phasic function. To that end, samples were taken from the superficial and deep regions, the inserts proximal (medial and lateral) and distal brachial biceps six capuchin monkeys male and adult, which were subjected to the reactions of m-ATPase, NADH-Tr. Based on the results of these reactions fibres were classified as in Fast Twitch Glycolitic (FG), Fast Twitch Oxidative Glycolitic (FOG) and Slow Twitc (SO). In general, the results, considering the muscle as a whole, show a trend of frequency FOG> FG> SO. The data on the frequency were studied on three superficial regions FOG=FG>SO; the deep regions of the inserts proximal FOG=FG=SO and inserting the distal FOG>FG=SO. In conclusion, the biceps brachii of the capuchin monkey is well adapted for both postural and phasic activities.
 
Raillietiella gigliolii is a Neotropical pentastomid parasite found in Amphisbaena alba. Collections were made in northeastern Brazil in a remnant area of Atlantic Forest (07 masculine 10' S and 35 masculine 05' W) in the municipality of Cruz do Espírito Santo, Paraíba State, and in a Humid Forest area (07 masculine 16' S and 39 masculine 26' W) on the slopes of the Chapada do Araripe Mountains, municipality of Crato, Ceará state, Brazil. Nine specimens of A. alba and 12 of A. vermicularis were collected to gather basic ecological data (prevalence and mean intensity of infection) concerning these parasites. Raillietiella gigliolii was found infecting the lungs of both species. The prevalence for A. alba was 55.5% (5/9), with a mean intensity of infection of 5.0 +/- 2.53 and amplitudes of 1-13. A. vermicularis demonstrated prevalence of 50%, with a mean intensity of infection of 5.3 +/- 2.1 and amplitudes of 1-14. This represents the first record of R. gigliolii as a parasite of A. vermicularis. Our results suggest that R. gigliolii is a generalist parasite species and that an overlapping diet is the determinant factor in the sharing of its final hosts.
 
M. coffeus gonad development stages. a: "Resting" stage; b: "Cell Proliferation" stage; c: "Cell Differentiation/ Maturation" stage; d: "Final Maturation/Release" stage, showing mature oocytes; e: "Final Maturation/Release" stage, showing spermatozoids; f: "Final Maturation/Release" stage, showing macrophage cells; and g: "Exhaustion" stage. 
M. coffeus gonad development stages observed between February, 2007 and January, 2009. 
Melampus coffeus belongs to a primitive group of pulmonate mollusks found mainly in the upper levels of the marine intertidal zone. They are common in the neotropical mangroves. Little is known about the biology of this species, particularly about its reproduction. The aim of this study was to 1) characterize the morphology and histology of M. coffeus' gonad; 2) describe the main gametogenesis events and link them to a range of maturity stages; 3) chronologically evaluate the frequency of the different maturity stages and their relation to environmental factors such as water, air and sediment temperatures, relative humidity, salinity and rainfall; and 4) characterize M. coffeus' spawning, eggs and newly hatched veliger larvae. Samples were collected monthly between February, 2007 and January, 2009 from the mangroves of Praia de Arpoeiras, Acaraú County, State of Ceará, northeastern Brazil. The characterization of the gonad development stages was carried out using routine histological techniques. The results of this study show that Melampus coffeus is a simultaneous hermaphrodite. The follicles have masculine and feminine elements, interleaved within the gonad. M. coffeus presents a well-defined synchronous reproductive cycle, showing successive maturation, release and resting periods. The average diameter of the oocytes was negatively correlated with salinity and positively correlated with rainfall. The results show that no reproductive activity occurs during periods of drought. After the dry season, the increasing rainfall levels and reduced salinity lead to the appearance of very dense populations, predominantly composed of small individuals.
 
Intestinal helminths of six free-ranging road-killed Euphractus sexcinctus from Patos county region, Paraíba state, Brazil. 
Schematic map representing the study area and the Caatinga Biome range (Adapted from: Silva et al., 2003).  
Hadrostrongylus ransomi: 10) Anterior portion, lateral view; 11) Synlophe, mid-body transversal cut; 12) Copulatory bursa, ventral view; 13) Spicules and gubernacule, lateral view; 14) Spicules and gubernacule, ventral view; 15) Female vulvar region, lateral view; and 16) Female tail tip.  
Trichohelix tuberculata: 2) Anterior portion, lateral view; 3) Synlophe, esophageal portion transversal cut; 4) Synlophe, mid-body transversal cut; 5) Copulatory bursa, ventral view; 6) Left spicule, ventral view; 7) left spicule, lateral view; 8) Gubernacule, ventral view; and 9) Female vulvar region and tail tip.  
This work aimed to evaluate the gastrointestinal helminthfauna composition of six-banded armadillos from the Brazilian semi-arid region. Gastrointestinal contents of six road-killed adult animals from Patos County, Paraíba State, were analyzed. Six species of nematodes, comprising five genera and four families, were recovered from the analyzed animals. New morphological data on Trichohelix tuberculata is given, along with a new taxonomical proposal for Hadrostrongylus ransomi (Travassos, 1935) n. comb. This is the first record for parasitic helminths in this host from the Brazilian semi-arid.
 
Coefficients associated to the morphometric variables used to estimate the canonical discriminant function, considering sex and species as descriptors in Chelonoidis carbonaria and C. denticulata. 
Dispersion diagram of the discriminant analysis conducted for the morphometric variables in females (o) and males (+) of C. carbonaria, and of females (∆) and males (x) of C. denticulata. 
Chelonoidis Dcarbonaria and C. denticulata are two tortoises which are widely distributed Brazil. Although they occur sympatrically in different areas, C. carbonaria prefers open areas, while C. denticulata chooses forest areas. Significant morphological variations can be observed in these species due to the fact that they occupy a vast and environmentally diverse area. Data on shell shape of captive individuals reveal important differences between the two species, mainly in the plastron scutes, carapace width, and head length. Variation in shape is greater in C. carbonaria than in C. denticulata, which may be associated to a more elaborate and complex mating ritual. The shell shape in C. denticulata is more elongated than in C. carbonaria due to ecological habits. These aspects lead to a greater restriction in shape, limiting variation and dimorphism. In C. carbonaria, the shell opening is larger than in C. denticulata, which affords greater variation in shape. A more elongated shell facilitates movements of C. denticulata in densely forested areas. Yet, this characteristic reduces shell opening, lessening the possibilities of variation in form.
 
Germination tests for defecated and control seeds, with the percentage of germinated seeds and germination velocity. 
Germination tests in the field for defecated and control seeds, with the percentage of germinated seeds and germination velocity. 
Size of fruits and seeds eaten by golden lion tama- rins. 
The influence of the golden lion tamarin (Leontopithecus rosalia) as a seed disperser was studied by monitoring two groups of tamarins from December 1998 to December 2000 (871.9 hours of observations) in a forest fragment in south-east Brazil. The tamarins consumed fruits of 57 species from at least 17 families. They ingested the seeds of 39 species, and 23 of these were put to germinate in the laboratory and/or in the field. L. rosalia is a legitimate seed disperser because the seeds of all species tested germinated after ingestion, albeit some in low percentages. These primates do not show a consistent effect in final seed germination, because they benefit some species while damaging others. Feces were examined for seeds that had been preyed upon or digested.
 
Individual growth curve of Hydra viridissima cultured in reconstituted water at 20 ± 2 °C, in a 12 hours light: 12 hours dark photoperiod, with a diet of neonates of the cladoceran Ceriodaphnia silvestrii. Data points for each day represent one or more of the seven replicates that survived until the end of the experiment. 
Hydras, the most representative freshwater Cnidaria, are of common occurrence in bodies of water in every continent except Antarctica. This study was planned with the aim of maintaining a population of Hydra viridissima in laboratory culture to enable the determination of the individual and population growth-rates of this species, as well as its population doubling time and generation time, with a view to employing these common animals as test-organisms in ecotoxicological assays. The organisms were maintained in reconstituted water at 20 +/- 2 degrees C, illuminated at 800 lux with a photoperiod of 12 hours light: 12 hours dark, and were fed on neonates of the cladoceran Ceriodaphnia silvestrii (3 or 4 neonates per hydra, 3 times a week). The individual growth-rate (k) of the species was 0.43, the maximum length of the column 2.53 mm and the generation time 6.6 +/- 1.5 days on average. The hydra population showed an intrinsic growth-rate (r) of 0.0468, according to the fitted curve, and a doubling time of 14.8 +/- 2.63 days. Hydra viridissima is easy to grow in the laboratory and performs well in the conditions used in this study. It is thus a promising candidate test-organism for ecotoxicological studies.
 
Map of localization of the sampling stations in the Piranhas-Assu Basin (RN), with indication of the places with occurrences of Melanoides tuberculatus. 
Dense aggregation of Melanoides tuberculatus in the littoral region of the Itans reservoir (RN) (march/2008). Species in plan. 
Records of the gastropod Melanoides tuberculatus (Müller, 1774), family Thiaridae, in the Piranhas-Assu River basin in Rio Grande do Norte reveal the dispersal of this native Southeast Asian and East African species into aquatic environments of the Brazilian semiarid region, including artificial environments (reservoirs) and lotic systems. The eutrophic conditions of the local waterbodies appear to favor the present situation, where this invasive species reaches extremely high densities, sometimes over 10,000 ind x m(-2) as in Armando Ribeiro Gonçalves Reservoir. These observations indicate the immediate need for new studies on the spatial distribution of the species and its potential impact on the biodiversity and water quality of the waterbodies of the semiarid region of the state. Implantation of regular and systematic monitoring of the aquatic resources of the region is urgently required.
 
Deroceras reticulatun MLP 12821. 
Deroceras reticulatum é uma espécie sinantrópica oriunda da Europa e com grande dispersão na América do Sul. Esta espécie é considerada atualmente praga dos cultivos de semeadura direta de milho, soja, trigo, girassol, alfafa e trevos, entre outros. O presente trabalho tem por objetivo comunicar o primeiro achado do agriolimácido D. reticulatum na Reserva de usos múltiplos Ilha Martín García, província de Buenos Aires e proporcionar informação sobre a distribuição desta espécie em cinco províncias argentinas.
 
The description of the last instar larva and pupa of Phoracantha recurva Newman, 1842 and the redescription of the immature stages of Phoracantha semipunctata Fabricius, 1775 showing new characters of possible diagnostic value are presented in this work. A key of identification of both species based on these characters is also given.
 
Locale of infection, developmental stage, mean intensity, abundance, prevalence and importance of endohelminths in 33 specimens of Pseudoplatystoma fasciatum captured in the Aquidauana River, State of Mato Grosso do Sul, during September and November, 2003 and October, 2004 and October, 2005. 
This study investigated the structure and diversity of the endohelminth community and its interactions with Pseudoplatystoma fasciatum, caught in the Aquidauana River, in the State of Mato Grosso do Sul, Brazil. Ten helminth species were represented in 1,228 specimens of parasites found in the intestine and mesentery of 33 specimens of P. fasciatum. Cestodes were observed in the intestine, while nematodes Cucullanus sp. in the mesentery. Contracaecum sp. Type 1, Spatulifer rugosa and Choanoscolex abscisus showed the highest mean intensity and mean abundance and Nomimoscolex sudobin showed the highest prevalence. Simpson's index indicated dominance in the endohelminth infracommunities (C = 1.0792) and Choanoscolex abscisus was considered the central species. A clumped pattern of dispersion according to Green's index was related. 69.69% of hosts analyzed had between 2 and 5 species of endohelminths. Mean diversity was H = 0.5517 (SD = 0.4209). Two pairs of species showed significant positive association and four pairs presented significant positive correlation among abundance data. Significant negative correlations between total length and prevalence and abundance of Peltydocotyle rugosa and Nomimoscolex sudobim were found. However, no significant correlation was observed between condition factor and abundance, as well as total length and diversity. There was significant prevalence of Harriscolex kaparari in male hosts.
 
List of the analyzed samples, their respective sources, geographic origin, and haplotype (CR+Cyt-b). 
Phylogeographic network built by the median joining algorithm with the segment containing Cyt-b and CR nucleotide sequences. Black sectors correspond to Pantanal population and white to Amazon populations.
Pairwise Fst (below diagonal) and st (above diagonal) values calculated based on Cyt-b + CR data sets. 
The giant otter (Pteronura brasiliensis) is an aquatic mammal of the Mustelidae family, endemic to South America. Its original distribution corresponds to the region from the Guyanas to Central-North Argentina, but it is extinct or on the verge of extinction in most of its historical range. Currently, the species is considered endangered by the World Conservation Union (IUCN). Based on its geographic distribution in the South American continent and on some morphological characters, two subspecies were suggested: P. brasiliensis brasiliensis, occurring in the Amazon and Orinoco River Basins, and P. brasiliensis paranensis, in the Paraná and Paraguai River Basins. However, there is no consensus on assuming this subspecies division and no detailed studies have been carried out to elucidate this question. This study aims to evaluate the genetic diversity and population structure of Pteronura brasiliensis along its range in Brazil to check the possibility of the existence of two distinct subspecies using also a reciprocal monophyly criterion. We analyzed the control region, and the Cytochrome b and Cytochrome c Oxidase subunit I genes of the mitochondrial DNA in several giant otter populations from the Amazon and Paraguai River Basins. Analyses have indicated some degree of geographic correlation and a high level of inter-population divergence, although the subspecies division is not highly supported. As we observed strong population structure, we cannot rule out the existence of further divisions shaping the species distribution. The results suggest that a more complex population structure occurs in P. brasiliensis, and the conservation practice should concentrate on preserving all remaining local populations.
 
Nymph survivorship a), development time b), and adult size c) of H. clavigera (open bars) and A. foliacea marginella (closed bars) (mean + standard error) reared on different passion vines alone and in combination (= treatments). Arabic numbers above bars indicate the total number of adults obtained per treatment. 
Feeding activity of H. clavigera (open bars) and A. foliacea marginella (closed bars) immatures (Figures a to e-first to fifth instar, respectively) in relation to P. edulis plant parts. Arabic numbers following the corresponding squares represent number of individuals observed in a given instar. TBU, terminal bud; LEA, leaf; STE, stem; FBU, flower bud; FLR, flower; FRU, fruit. 
Holymenia clavigera (Herbst) and Anisoscelis foliacea marginella (Dallas) (Hemiptera: Coreidae: Anisoscelini) are distributed in southern Brazil and use various passion vine species (Passifloraceae) as host-plants. Preliminary observations indicate a high coexistence of these species in terms of host-plant use; in addition, there is a strong similarity regarding egg and nymph morphology. In this study, the most suitable feeding sites for nymph performance on wild (Passiflora suberosa Linnaeus and Passiflora misera Humbold, Bonpland et Kunth) and cultivated (Passiflora edulis Sims) hosts were determined by rearing them on each host and on the combination of hosts. Performance was determined by evaluating nymph development and survivorship, and adult size at emergence. Plant parts used were also recorded. For both species, P. suberosa was the most suitable host plant. First instar nymphs of both species fed on terminal buds more frequently when compared to other plant parts. Second instar nymphs switched to green fruits, whose behavior was more pronounced for H. clavigera. Thus, H. clavigera and A. foliacea marginella immatures are extremely similar in terms of host-plant use and consequences for performance, in addition to their morphological similarity. We suggest that these coreids may have evolved through several processes, including parsimony between the immature stages after speciation, evolutionary convergence, mimicry or genetic drift.
 
Tagelus plebeius hermaphrodite from the Cachoeira River Estuary region, Ilhéus, Bahia, Brazil. MG = Male gonad; FG = Female gonad. 
Iphigenia brasiliana hermaphrodite from the Cachoeira River Estuary region, Ilhéus, Bahia, Brazil. MG = Male gonad; FG = Female gonad; *gonadal area, not differentiated. 
The samples of Tagelus plebeius and Iphigenia brasiliana were manually collected on the Cachoeira River estuary region (Ilhéus, BA, Brazil) between August 2005 and August 2006, with a periodicity of 15 days, with 20 animals collected/sampled, performing 500 samples from each species. The animals were measured, eviscerated and kept in solution of Davidson and after 24-30 hours, they were transferred to ethanol 70%. The material was processed for routine histology, with paraffin embedding, obtaining 7 microm thick slices, stained with Harris hematoxilin and Eosin (HE). By light microscopy analysis, 2 cases of hermaphroditism (0.4%) in T. plebeius samples and one case (0.2%) in I. brasiliana were registered with predominance of female over male follicles.
 
Plant species visited by E. macroura, their relative abundance (RA) in the study area, and number of visits at each plant for foraging and territorial defense. 
The aim of this work was to observe and describe the feeding habits and available food resources of the swallow-tailed hummingbird, Eupetomena macroura. The study was carried out in a municipal park located in the city of Taubaté, in the state of São Paulo. The observations took place between December 2003 and October 2004, recording the following variables: 1) the plant species visited for feeding and territorial defense; 2) the kinds of food resources; and 3) the kinds of flight to procure and obtain food. E. macroura visited 12 plant species. For territorial defense, Mangifera indica was the most visited, whereas Malvaviscus arboreus was most visited for feeding. The foliage was the plant part that received the most frequent visits. In order to obtain nectar, the only species visited was M. arboreus; to obtain arthropods, the species most visited were Mangifera indica and Hymenaea stilbocarpa. In the dry season, the hummingbirds visited flowers, whereas in the rainy season they visited leaves to acquire food. The arthropod groups most frequently found on leafy branches were Homoptera and Psocoptera. Finally, the results of the type of flight analysis showed that flight used to capture food was more often observed than were flights to search for food. In conclusion, these observations suggest that E. macroura shows plasticity in feeding behavior, which can help it to persist in urban areas.
 
For several decades, the bivalve mollusk Anomalocardia brasiliana has been extracted in estuarine areas in the semi-arid region of northeastern Brazil. However, information on both dynamics and abundance of their populations are missing. In this context, the present study, therefore, investigated several aspects of the population structure of A. brasiliana on beaches near the estuary of the Apodi River in Northeast Brazil. The aims were to determine the population density of A. brasiliana during different times of the year, to estimate population parameters, and to relate species density and distribution to the abiotic characteristics of the region. Sampling was performed from March/2007 and May/2008, we collected samples of sediments and mollusks along 180 m transects in the intertidal area on the beaches Barra and Pernambuquinho, Grossos - RN. At each sampling site, samples of sediments and mollusks were collected in the intertidal area along 180 m transects. The highest and lowest average densities on Pernambuquinho beach were 1148 (April/2007), and 100 individuals.m-2 (May/ 2008), respectively. On Barra beach, the highest and lowest densities were 1813 (April/2007) and 951 individuals.m-2, (November/2007), respectively. The densities of A. brasiliana on both beaches were significantly different only in the months of January, April and May/ 2008. Length of the individuals ranged from 1 to 28 mm, with most individuals measuring between 22 and 24 mm. Length growth rate parameters for A. brasiliana were L∞ = 28.68 mm and k = 0.61 year-1 on Barra beach, and L∞ = 29.87 mm and k = 0.48 year-1 on Pernambuquinho beach. The growth rate curves for A. brasiliana suggest the presence of three well defined cohorts, thus pointing to a continuous reproduction cycle with peak recruitment between October/2007 and March/2008. A. brasiliana density decreased predominantly during the heavy rains of 2008, probably due to an accumulation of sediments and decreasing salinity. This disturbance probably affected population of this species in the region.
 
Top-cited authors
Fernanda Klein Marcondes
  • University of Campinas
Fabio Bianchi
  • University of Campinas
Ana Paula Tanno
  • Universidade Metodista de Piracicaba (Unimep)
Carlos Frederico Duarte Rocha
  • Rio de Janeiro State University
Odete Rocha
  • Universidade Federal de São Carlos