Pedro Lagerblad de Oliveira

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Heme is an ancient and ubiquitous molecule present in organisms of all kingdoms, composed of an atom of iron linked to four ligand groups of porphyrin. A high amount of free heme, a potential amplifier of the inflammatory response, is a characteristic feature of diseases with increased hemolysis or extensive cell damage. Here we demonstrate that heme, but(More)
A blood-sucking habit appeared independently several times in the course of arthropod evolution. However, from more than a million species of insects and arachnids presently living on earth, only about 14,000 species developed the capacity to feed on vertebrate blood. This figure suggests the existence of severe physiological constraints for the evolution(More)
a Departamento de Bioquı́mica Médica, Uni6ersidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, Cidade Uni6ersitária, 21941-590, Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil b Di6isão de Quı́mica, Setor de Quı́mica Orgânica, CENPES, Petrobrás, Cidade Uni6ersitária, 21949-900, Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil c Centro de Biociências e Biotecnologia, Uni6ersidade Estadual do Norte Fluminense, Campos(More)
Malaria parasites digest haemoglobin and detoxify the free haem by its sequestration into an insoluble dark-brown pigment known as haemozoin (Hz). Until recently, this pigment could be found only in Plasmodium parasites. However, we have shown that Hz is also present in the midgut of the blood-sucking insect Rhodnius prolixus [Oliveira et al. (1999) Nature(More)
Hemozoin (Hz) is a heme crystal produced upon the digestion of hemoglobin (Hb) by blood-feeding organisms as a main mechanism of heme disposal. The structure of Hz consists of heme dimers bound by reciprocal iron-carboxylate interactions and stabilized by hydrogen bonds. We have recently described heme crystals in the blood fluke, Schistosoma mansoni, and(More)
The main protein of the hemolymph of the cattle tick Boophilus microplus has been isolated and shown to be a heme lipoprotein (HeLp). HeLp has an apparent molecular mass of 354,000 and contains two apoproteins (103 and 92 kDa) found in equal amounts. HeLp presents a pI of 5.8 and a density of 1.28 g/ml and contains 33% lipids, containing both neutral lipids(More)
Here we investigated H2O2 production and detoxification in the hematophagous hemiptera, Rhodnius prolixus. Superoxide dismutase (SOD) catalyzes the dismutation of superoxide radical (O2-). This reaction produces hydrogen peroxide, which is scavenged by antioxidant enzymes such as catalase (CAT). SOD and CAT activities were found in all tissues studied,(More)
Heme is present in all cells, acting as a cofactor in essential metabolic pathways such as respiration and photosynthesis. Moreover, both heme and its degradation products, CO, iron and biliverdin, have been ascribed important signaling roles. However, limited knowledge is available on the intracellular pathways involved in the flux of heme between(More)
Gluconacetobacter diazotrophicus, an endophyte isolated from sugarcane, is a strict aerobe that fixates N2. This process is catalyzed by nitrogenase and requires copious amounts of ATP. Nitrogenase activity is extremely sensitive to inhibition by oxygen and reactive oxygen species (ROS). However, the elevated oxidative metabolic rates required to sustain(More)