Ana Cristina Costa

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The effect of Pb2+ on glutamate receptor activity in rat hippocampal neurons was investigated with a view of explaining the cognitive and learning deficits produced by this heavy metal. Pb2+ (2.5-50 microM) selectively inhibited N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA)-induced whole-cell and single-channel currents in a concentration-dependent but voltage-independent(More)
The study of whole-cell currents from ion channels expressed in Xenopus oocytes with conventional two-electrode voltage clamp has two major limitations. First, the large diameter and spherical geometry of oocytes prevent extremely fast solution changes. Second, the internal medium is not controlled, which limits the experimental versatility of the oocyte(More)
BACKGROUND Decapods are the most recognizable of all crustaceans and comprise a dominant group of benthic invertebrates of the continental shelf and slope, including many species of economic importance. Of the 17635 morphologically described Decapoda species, only 5.4% are represented by COI barcode region sequences. It therefore remains a challenge to(More)
Global homogenization of biota is underway through worldwide introduction and establishment of non-indigenous (exotic) species. Organisms fouling ship hulls are continually in transit and can affect communities through biodiversity loss and serious damage to economy and public health. In the Azores, for the first time, underwater alien species prospection(More)
The rat alpha 7 neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor was expressed and studied in Xenopus oocytes. The magnitude and reversal potential of instantaneous whole cell currents were examined in solutions containing varying concentrations of either calcium or barium, and in the presence or absence of the intracellular calcium chelator BAPTA. In external(More)
MarvelD3 is a transmembrane component of tight junctions, but there is little evidence for a direct involvement in the junctional permeability barrier. Tight junctions also regulate signaling mechanisms that guide cell proliferation; however, the transmembrane components that link the junction to such signaling pathways are not well understood. In this(More)
The mechanisms underlying improvement of neuromuscular transmission deficits by glucocorticoids are still a matter of debate despite these compounds have been used for decades in the treatment of autoimmune myasthenic syndromes. Besides their immunosuppressive action, corticosteroids may directly facilitate transmitter release during high-frequency motor(More)
Recent findings have shown that the blood vessels of different organs exert an active role in regulating organ function. In detail, the endothelium that aligns the vasculature of most organs is fundamental in maintaining organ homeostasis and in promoting organ recovery following injury. Mechanistically, endothelial cells (EC) of tissues such as the liver,(More)
Ocean Sampling Day was initiated by the EU-funded Micro B3 (Marine Microbial Biodiversity, Bioinformatics, Biotechnology) project to obtain a snapshot of the marine microbial biodiversity and function of the world's oceans. It is a simultaneous global mega-sequencing campaign aiming to generate the largest standardized microbial data set in a single day.(More)
The actions of 1,2,3,4-tetrahydro-9-aminoacridine (THA) and 9-aminoacridine (9-AA) on glutamatergic receptors were studied using the whole-cell and outside-out variants of the patch-clamp technique. Typically, either N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) or kainate alone or combined with various concentrations of THA or 9-AA was applied via a U tube to activate(More)