Salinity Stress Enhances the Antioxidant Capacity of Bacillus and Planococcus Species Isolated From Saline Lake Environment.
ABSTRACT: This study aims at exploiting salinity stress as an innovative, simple, and cheap method to enhance the production of antioxidant metabolites and enzymes from bacteria for potential application as functional additives to foods and pharmaceuticals. We investigated the physiological and biochemical responses of four bacterial isolates, which exhibited high tolerance to 20% NaCl (wt/vol), out of 27 bacterial strains isolated from Aushazia Lake, Qassim region, Saudi Arabia. The phylogenetic analysis of the 16S rRNA genes of these four isolates indicated that strains ST1 and ST2 belong to genus Bacillus, whereas strains ST3 and ST4 belong to genus Planococcus. Salinity stress differentially induced oxidative damage, where strains ST3 and ST4 showed increased lipid peroxidation, lipoxygenase, and xanthine oxidase levels. Consequently, high antioxidant contents were produced to control oxidative stress, particularly in ST3 and ST4. These two Planococcus strains showed increased glutathione cycle, phenols, flavonoids, antioxidant capacity, catalase, and/or superoxide dismutase (SOD). Interestingly, the production of glutathione by Planococcus strains was some thousand folds greater than by higher plants. On the other hand, the induction of antioxidants in ST1 and ST2 was restricted to phenols, flavonoids, peroxidase, glutaredoxin, and/or SOD. The hierarchical analysis also supported strain-specific responses. This is the first report that exploited salinity stress for promoting the production of antioxidants from bacterial isolates, which can be utilized as postbiotics for promising applications in foods and pharmaceuticals.
Project description:Blastocystis sp., a unicellular intestinal parasite in humans and animals worldwide, is frequently found in immunocompromized patients and people in close contact with animals. Here, we reviewed recent studies on the prevalence, subtypes, and distribution of Blastocystis infection in humans and animals in China. To date, more than 12 provinces have reported Blastocystis infection in humans, with identification of six different subtypes (ST1, ST2, ST3, ST4, ST5, and ST6). The overall infection rate reported was 3.37% (3625/107,695), with the lowest prevalence (0.80%) in Fujian province and the highest prevalence (100%) in Guangdong province. ST3 (62%, 186/300) was the most dominant subtype, identified in all tested provinces in China. A total of eight provinces have reported Blastocystis infection in various animals, with the overall prevalence being 24.66% (1202/4874). Molecular analysis revealed 14 subtypes that infected animals, including 10 known (ST1, ST2, ST3, ST4, ST5, ST6, ST7, ST10, ST13, ST14), and 4 novel (Novel1, Novel2, Novel3, Novel4) subtypes. ST5 was the dominant subtype infecting artiodactyls (44.1%, 460/1044), while ST1 commonly infected carnivores (45.5%, 5/11). These findings provide insights into the epidemiological behavior of Blastocystis sp. in China, and could help in developing effective control strategies against the parasite.
Project description:Blastocystis sp. is described as an enteric protist prevalent in fecal samples from humans and animals; its pathogenicity and epidemiology are still controversial. Currently, it has been associated with intestinal diseases such as irritable bowel syndrome and clinical manifestations of allergic skin, such as chronic urticaria. In the context of urticaria, it is still uncertain whether this organism is directly related to the allergic manifestation or just a common component of the intestinal microbiota. This study aimed to evaluate the occurrence and molecular diversity of Blastocystis sp. in individuals with urticaria from a dermatology outpatient clinic, São Paulo, Brazil. Fecal samples of 58 patients with urticaria were examined using parasitological methods; and subsequently tested by polymerase chain reaction using Blastocystis-specific primers. The subtypes (STs) and alleles (a) were determined using BLASTn and MLST tools. ST1, ST2, ST3, ST4, ST6 and mixed infection (ST1 + ST3) were identified in the patients with urticaria; ST1 (a4), ST3 (a34 and a36) and ST4 (a42) were the most prevalent. Our molecular analyses allowed an initial description of Blastocystis subtypes in patients with urticaria from São Paulo city, Brazil.
Project description:Alternating wet and dry seasons may play an important role in the acquisition and distribution of Blastocystis subtype infection in the tropics. This cross-sectional study was therefore conducted to provide the prevalence of Blastocystis and to determine the potential risk factors associated with each subtype during the wet and dry seasons in the Aboriginal community, Pahang, Malaysia.A total of 473 faecal samples were collected: 256 (54.1%) and 217 (45.9%) samples were obtained during the wet (October-November 2014) and the dry season (June 2015), respectively. All fresh faecal samples were subjected to molecular analysis for subtype and allele identification.Of the 473 samples, 42.6% and 37.8% were positive for Blastocystis ST1, ST2, ST3 and ST4 during wet and dry seasons, respectively. Prevalence of Blastocystis ST1 was significantly higher during the wet season compared to the dry season (Z = 2.146, P < 0.05). Analysis of the association of each Blastocystis subtype with socioeconomic characteristics showed the presence of other family members infected with Blastocystis ST3 and the use of stored river water for domestic activities were the significant risk factors for Blastocystis ST3 infections during both seasons. Untreated water supply and low monthly household income (less or equal to RM 500) were the other significant risk factors for Blastocystis ST3 infections during wet and dry season, respectively. The presence of other family members with Blastocystis ST1 and ST2 was the only significant risk factor associated with ST1 and ST2 infections during both seasons. We hypothesise that transmission of Blastocystis ST1, ST2 and ST3 occurred from person to person during both seasons. The waterborne transmission was also identified as a mode of transmission of Blastocystis ST3.The significant risk factors identified in this study were important in the dynamic transmission of Blastocystis infections during both seasons. Provision of treated water supply and health education are affirmative actions to be taken to control Blastocystis infections in this community.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Robot-assisted gait training (RAGT) is expected to be an effective rehabilitative intervention for patients with gait disturbances. However, the monotonous gait pattern provided by robotic guidance tends to induce sleepiness, and the resultant decreased arousal during RAGT may negatively affect gait training progress. This study assessed electroencephalography (EEG)-based, objective sleepiness during RAGT and examined whether verbal or nonverbal warning sounds are effective stimuli for counteracting such sleepiness.<h4>Methods</h4>Twelve healthy men walked on a treadmill for 6 min, while being guided by a Gait-Assistance Robot, under 3 experimental conditions: with sine-wave sound stimulation (SS), verbal sound stimulation (VS), and no sound stimulation (NS). The volunteers were provided with warning sound stimulation at 4 min (ST1), 4 min 20 s (ST2), 4 min 40 s (ST3), and 5 min (ST4) after the start of RAGT. EEGs were recorded at the central (Cz) and occipital (O1 and O2) regions (International 10-20 system) before and during RAGT, and 4-s segments of EEG data were extracted from the filtered data during the 8 experimental periods: middle of the eyes-closed condition; middle of the eyes-open condition; beginning of RAGT; immediately before ST1; immediately after ST1, ST2, ST3, and ST4. According to the method used in the Karolinska drowsiness test, the power densities of the theta, alpha 1, and alpha 2 bands were calculated as indices of objective sleepiness.<h4>Results</h4>Comparisons of the findings between baseline and before ST showed that the power densities of the alpha 1 and 2 bands tended to increase, whereas the theta power density increased significantly (P?<?.05). During NS, the power densities remained at a constant high level until after ST4. During SS and VS, the power densities were attenuated immediately to the same degree and maintained at a constant low level until after ST4.<h4>Conclusions</h4>This study is the first to demonstrate that EEG-measured arousal levels decrease within a short time during RAGT, but are restored and maintained by intermittent warning sound stimulation.
Project description:In the tropics, there are too few studies on isolation of <i>Blastocystis</i> sp. subtypes from water sources; in addition, there is also an absence of reported studies on the occurrence of <i>Blastocystis</i> sp. subtypes in water during different seasons. Therefore, this study was aimed to determine the occurrence of <i>Blastocystis</i> sp. subtypes in river water and other water sources that drained aboriginal vicinity of highly endemic intestinal parasitic infections during wet and dry seasons. Water samples were collected from six sampling points of Sungai Krau (K1-K6) and a point at Sungai Lompat (K7) and other water sources around the aboriginal villages. The water samples were collected during both seasons, wet and dry seasons. Filtration of the water samples were carried out using a flatbed membrane filtration system. The extracted DNA from concentrated water sediment was subjected to single round polymerase chain reaction and positive PCR products were subjected to sequencing. All samples were also subjected to filtration and cultured on membrane lactose glucuronide agar for the detection of faecal coliforms. During wet season, <i>Blastocystis</i> sp. ST1, ST2 and ST3 were detected in river water samples. <i>Blastocystis</i> sp. ST3 occurrence was sustained in the river water samples during dry season. However <i>Blastocystis</i> sp. ST1 and ST2 were absent during dry season. Water samples collected from various water sources showed contaminations of <i>Blastocystis</i> sp. ST1, ST2, ST3 and ST4, during wet season and <i>Blastocystis</i> sp. ST1, ST3, ST8 and ST10 during dry season. Water collected from all river sampling points during both seasons showed growth of <i>Escherichia coli and Enterobacter aerogenes</i>, indicating faecal contamination. In this study, <i>Blastocystis</i> sp. ST3 is suggested as the most robust and resistant subtype able to survive in any adverse environmental condition. Restriction and control of human and animal faecal contaminations to the river and other water sources shall prevent the transmission of <i>Blastocystis</i> sp. to humans and animals in this aboriginal community.
Project description:ShooT specific/Specific Tissue (ST) belong to a protein family of unknown function characterized by the DUF2775 domain and produced in specific taxonomic plant families, mainly Fabaceae and Asteraceae, with the Medicago truncatula ST family being the largest. The putative roles proposed for this family are cell elongation, biotic interactions, abiotic stress and N reserve. The aim of this work was to go deeper into the role of three M. truncatula ST proteins, namely ST1, ST2 and ST3. Our starting hypothesis was that each member of the family could perform a specific role, and hence, each ST gene would be subjected to a different type of regulation.The search for cis-acting regulatory elements (CREs) in silico in pST1, pST2 and pST3 promoters showed prevalence of tissue/organ specific motifs, especially root- and seed-specific ones. Light, hormone, biotic and abiotic related motifs were also present. None of these pSTs showed the same combination of CREs, or presented the same activity pattern. In general, pST activity was associated with the vascular cylinder, mainly in roots. Promoter activation was highly specific and dissimilar during reproductive development. The ST1, ST2 and ST3 transcripts accumulated in most of the organs and developmental stages analysed - decreasing with age - and expression was higher in the roots than in the aerial parts and more abundant in light-grown plants. The effect of the different treatments on transcript accumulation indicated that ST1 behaved differently from ST2 and ST3, mainly in response to several hormones and dehydration treatments (NaCl or mannitol), upon which ST1 transcript levels decreased and ST2 and ST3 levels increased. Finally, the ST1 protein was located in the cell wall whereas ST2 and ST3 were present both in the cytoplasm and in the cell wall.The ST proteins studied are ubiquitous proteins that could perform distinct/complementary roles in plant biology as they are encoded by differentially regulated genes. Based on these differences we have established two functional groups among the three STs. ST1 would participate in processes affected by nutritional status, while ST2 and ST3 seem to act when plants are challenged with abiotic stresses related to water stress and in physiologically controlled desiccation processes such as the seed maturation.
Project description:Blastocystis is a common enteric protist colonizing probably more than 1 billion people with a large variety of non-human hosts. Remarkable genetic diversity has been observed, leading to the subdivision of the genus into multiple subtypes (ST), some of which are exclusively found in non-human hosts. The aim of this study was to determine the distribution of Blastocystis STs/18S alleles in symptomatic (abdominal pain, anal pruritus, diarrhea, headache, nauseas and/or vomit) and asymptomatic children from nine geographical regions of Colombia. A total of 2026 fecal samples were collected as part of a national survey to estimate the frequency of intestinal parasites in children. A set of 256 samples that were Blastocystis positive was finally selected. The samples were submitted to DNA extraction, Real Time PCR and sequencing using Blastocystis-specific primers targeting the small subunit rRNA gene for ST identification. DNA of Ascaris lumbricoides (16.4%), Trichuris trichiura (8.2%), hookworms (Necator americanus/Ancylostoma duodenale) (7.3%), Giardia duodenalis (23.1%), Entamoeba complex (82%), Entamoeba coli (55%), Hymenolepis nana (0.8%), Endolimax nana (33.2%) and Neobalantidium coli (2.7%) was detected in the Blastocystis-positive samples. We detected ST1 (21.4%), ST2 (19.5%), ST3 (55.5%), ST4 (0.8%), ST6 (2%) and ST7 (0.8%); alleles 1, 2, 4, 81, 82 and 83 for ST1; alleles 9, 11, 12, 15, 67, 71 and 73 for ST2; alleles 34, 36, 38, 45, 49, 55, 134 and 128 for ST3; allele 42 for ST4; allele 122 for ST6, and allele 142 for ST7. Further studies implementing high-resolution molecular markers are necessary to understand the dynamics of Blastocystis transmission and the role of this Stramenopila in health and disease.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Blastocystis is a stramenopile of worldwide significance due to its capacity to colonize several hosts. Based on its high level of genetic diversity, Blastocystis is classified into global ribosomal subtypes (STs). The aim of this study was to conduct a summary of Blastocystis STs and depict their distribution throughout North and South America; we did this by assembling maps and identifying its most common 18S alleles based on diverse studies that had been reported all over the continent and whose Blastocystis-positive samples were obtained from numerous hosts. RESULTS:Thirty-nine articles relating to nine countries from the American continent were considered, revealing that ST1 (33.3%), ST2 (21.9%), ST3 (37.9%), ST4 (1.7%), ST5 (0.4%), ST6 (1.2%), ST7 (1%), ST8 (0.7%), ST9 (0.4%), ST12 (0.3%), Novel ST (1.1%) and Mixed STs (0.2%) occurred in humans. The STs in other animal hosts were ST1 (6.5%), ST2 (6.5%), ST3 (4.7%), ST4 (7.2%), ST5 (15.9%), ST6 (17.3%), ST7 (3.6%), ST8 (20.6%), ST10 (9%), ST14 (3.6%), ST17 (1.1%) and Novel ST (4%). The countries that presented the most abundant variety of studies reporting STs were the USA with 14 STs, Brazil with 9 STs and Colombia with 8 STs. Additionally, new variants had been described in the last few years, which have increased the prevalence of these subtypes in the countries studied, such as Novel ST (1.1%) and Mixed STs (0.2%) in humans and Novel ST (4%) in animals. CONCLUSIONS:This summary updates the epidemiological situation on the distribution of Blastocystis STs in North and South America and will augment current knowledge on the prevalence and genetic diversity of this protozoan.
Project description:Background:Blastocystis is a common enteric parasite of controversial pathogenic roles in human diseases. Although the prevalence of Blastocystis infections has been investigated in a diverse range of populations, there is little knowledge on the molecular epidemiology and risk factors of Blastocystis infections among general populations in southeastern China. Materials and Methods:A total of 507 individuals were randomly selected in Yunnan province, China from July 2016 to March 2017. Stool specimens were sampled for detection of Blastocystis sp. using PCR assay, and the risk factors of Blastocystis infections were identified. Blastocystis isolates were subtyped, and the associations of Blastocystis infections and subtypes with clinical manifestations were examined. Results:The overall detection rate of Blastocystis sp. was 9.47% (95% CI: 7.13-12.44%). Toilet type (OR = 3.248, 95% CI: 1.245-8.473), anemia (OR = 2.601, 95% CI: 1.245-8.473) and type of daily drinking water (OR = 3.11, 95% CI: 1.557-6.213) were identified as risk factors of Blastocystis infections; however, Blastocystis infections showed no associations with clinical symptoms. Four subtypes (ST1 to ST4) were characterized in Blastocystis isolates, in which ST3 was predominant (4.73%, 95% CI: 3.2-6.94%), followed by ST1 (3.16%, 95% CI: 1.95-5.07%), ST4 (1.38%, 95% CI: 0.07-2.82%) and ST2 (0.2%, 95% CI: 0-1.11%). In addition, ST1 subtype infection was found to correlate with anemia (OR = 4.66, 95% CI: 1.631-14.314). Conclusions:There is a high prevalence of Blastocystis infections among general populations in Yunnan province, southwestern China, and toilet type, anemia and type of daily drinking water are risk factors of Blastocystis infections. ST3 is the dominant subtype of Blastocystis sp. characterized, and ST1 correlates with anemia. Improving hygiene conditions, developing healthy lifestyles and intensifying health education programs are strongly recommended to reduce the prevalence and transmission potential of Blastocystis infections.
Project description:Blastocystis is the most common eukaryotic parasite in the intestinal tract of humans. Because of its potential impact in public health, we acquired the first data concerning the prevalence of this parasite and the frequency of the Blastocystis subtypes (STs) in the Lebanese population. In this study, fecal samples from 220 Lebanese symptomatic and asymptomatic patients were collected and a total of 42 patients (19%) were identified as positive for this parasite by direct-light microscopy of smears. Among these, 36 Blastocystis isolates were genotyped using partial small subunit ribosomal RNA gene sequencing. The ST distribution in the present Lebanese population was as follows: ST3 (33.3%), ST2 (33.3%), ST1 (30.6%), and ST4 (2.8%). These data were compared with those available in other Middle Eastern and neighboring countries. Finally, ST1 was significantly more prevalent among symptomatic patients of this Lebanese population.