246 research outputs found

    Lipophosphoglycans from \u3cem\u3eLeishmania amazonensis\u3c/em\u3e Strains Display Immunomodulatory Properties via TLR4 and Do Not Affect Sand Fly Infection

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    The immunomodulatory properties of lipophosphoglycans (LPG) from New World species of Leishmania have been assessed in Leishmania infantum and Leishmania braziliensis, the causative agents of visceral and cutaneous leishmaniasis, respectively. This glycoconjugate is highly polymorphic among species with variation in sugars that branch off the conserved Gal(β1,4)Man(α1)-PO4 backbone of repeat units. Here, the immunomodulatory activity of LPGs from Leishmania amazonensis, the causative agent of diffuse cutaneous leishmaniasis, was evaluated in two strains from Brazil. One strain (PH8) was originally isolated from the sand fly and the other (Josefa) was isolated from a human case. The ability of purified LPGs from both strains was investigated during in vitro interaction with peritoneal murine macrophages and CHO cells and in vivo infection with Lutzomyia migonei. In peritoneal murine macrophages, the LPGs from both strains activated TLR4. Both LPGs equally activate MAPKs and the NF-κB inhibitor p-IκBα, but were not able to translocate NF-κB. In vivo experiments with sand flies showed that both stains were able to sustain infection in L. migonei. A preliminary biochemical analysis indicates intraspecies variation in the LPG sugar moieties. However, they did not result in different activation profiles of the innate immune system. Also those polymorphisms did not affect infectivity to the sand fly

    Vaccinia Virus Infection in Monkeys, Brazilian Amazon

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    To detect orthopoxvirus in the Brazilian Amazon, we conducted a serosurvey of 344 wild animals. Neutralizing antibodies against orthopoxvirus were detected by plaque-reduction neutralizing tests in 84 serum samples. Amplicons from 6 monkey samples were sequenced. These amplicons identified vaccinia virus genetically similar to strains from bovine vaccinia outbreaks in Brazil

    Direct evidence for phosphorus limitation on Amazon forest productivity

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    The productivity of rainforests growing on highly weathered tropical soils is expected to be limited by phosphorus availability1. Yet, controlled fertilization experiments have been unable to demonstrate a dominant role for phosphorus in controlling tropical forest net primary productivity. Recent syntheses have demonstrated that responses to nitrogen addition are as large as to phosphorus2, and adaptations to low phosphorus availability appear to enable net primary productivity to be maintained across major soil phosphorus gradients3. Thus, the extent to which phosphorus availability limits tropical forest productivity is highly uncertain. The majority of the Amazonia, however, is characterized by soils that are more depleted in phosphorus than those in which most tropical fertilization experiments have taken place2. Thus, we established a phosphorus, nitrogen and base cation addition experiment in an old growth Amazon rainforest, with a low soil phosphorus content that is representative of approximately 60% of the Amazon basin. Here we show that net primary productivity increased exclusively with phosphorus addition. After 2 years, strong responses were observed in fine root (+29%) and canopy productivity (+19%), but not stem growth. The direct evidence of phosphorus limitation of net primary productivity suggests that phosphorus availability may restrict Amazon forest responses to CO2 fertilization4, with major implications for future carbon sequestration and forest resilience to climate change.The authors acknowledge funding from the UK Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), grant number NE/L007223/1. This is publication 850 in the technical series of the BDFFP. C.A.Q. acknowledges the grants from Brazilian National Council for Scientific and Technological Development (CNPq) CNPq/LBA 68/2013, CNPq/MCTI/FNDCT no. 18/2021 and his productivity grant. C.A.Q., H.F.V.C., F.D.S., I.A., L.F.L., E.O.M. and S.G. acknowledge the AmazonFACE programme for financial support in cooperation with Coordination for the Improvement of Higher Education Personnel (CAPES) and the National Institute of Amazonian Research as part of the grants CAPES-INPA/88887.154643/2017-00 and 88881.154644/2017-01. T.F.D. acknowledges funds from FundacAo de Amparo a Pesquisa do Estado de SAo Paulo (FAPESP), grant 2015/50488-5, and the Partnership for Enhanced Engagement in Research (PEER) programme grant AID-OAA-A-11-00012. L.E.O.C.A. thanks CNPq (314416/2020-0)

    Glycoinositolphospholipids from Leishmania braziliensis and L. infantum: Modulation of Innate Immune System and Variations in Carbohydrate Structure

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    The essential role of the lipophosphoglycan (LPG) of Leishmania in innate immune response has been extensively reported. However, information about the role of the LPG-related glycoinositolphospholipids (GIPLs) is limited, especially with respect to the New World species of Leishmania. GIPLs are low molecular weight molecules covering the parasite surface and are similar to LPG in sharing a common lipid backbone and a glycan motif containing up to 7 sugars. Critical aspects of their structure and functions are still obscure in the interaction with the vertebrate host. In this study, we evaluated the role of those molecules in two medically important South American species Leishmania infantum and L. braziliensis, causative agents of visceral (VL) and cutaneous Leishmaniasis (CL), respectively. GIPLs derived from both species did not induce NO or TNF-α production by non-primed murine macrophages. Additionally, primed macrophages from mice (BALB/c, C57BL/6, TLR2−/− and TLR4−/−) exposed to GIPLs from both species, with exception to TNF-α, did not produce any of the cytokines analyzed (IL1-β, IL-2, IL-4, IL-5, IL-10, IL-12p40, IFN-γ) or p38 activation. GIPLs induced the production of TNF-α and NO by C57BL/6 mice, primarily via TLR4. Pre incubation of macrophages with GIPLs reduced significantly the amount of NO and IL-12 in the presence of IFN-γ or lipopolysaccharide (LPS), which was more pronounced with L. braziliensis GIPLs. This inhibition was reversed after PI-specific phospholipase C treatment. A structural analysis of the GIPLs showed that L. infantum has manose rich GIPLs, suggestive of type I and Hybrid GIPLs while L. braziliensis has galactose rich GIPLs, suggestive of Type II GIPLs. In conclusion, there are major differences in the structure and composition of GIPLs from L. braziliensis and L. infantum. Also, GIPLs are important inhibitory molecules during the interaction with macrophages

    Rapid responses of root traits and productivity to phosphorus and cation additions in a tropical lowland forest in Amazonia

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    • Soil nutrient availability can strongly affect root traits. In tropical forests, phosphorus (P) is often considered the main limiting nutrient for plants. However, support for the P paradigm is limited, and N and cations might also control tropical forests functioning. • We used a large‐scale experiment to determine how the factorial addition of nitrogen (N), P and cations affected root productivity and traits related to nutrient acquisition strategies (morphological traits, phosphatase activity, arbuscular mycorrhizal colonisation and nutrient contents) in a primary rainforest growing on low‐fertility soils in Central Amazonia after one year of fertilisation. • Multiple root traits and productivity were affected. Phosphorus additions increased annual root productivity and root diameter, but decreased root phosphatase activity. Cation additions increased root productivity at certain times of year, also increasing root diameter and mycorrhizal colonisation. P and cation additions increased their element concentrations in root tissues. No responses were detected with N addition. • Here we show that rock‐derived nutrients determine root functioning in low‐fertility Amazonian soils, demonstrating not only the hypothesised importance of P, but also highlighting the role of cations. The changes in fine root traits and productivity indicate that even slow‐growing tropical rainforests can respond rapidly to changes in resource availability