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Reproductive Delay In The Female Cape Ground Squirrel (Xerus Inauris), Beth Pettitt Jan 2006

Reproductive Delay In The Female Cape Ground Squirrel (Xerus Inauris), Beth Pettitt

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

The Cape ground squirrel, Xerus inauris, is a highly social cooperative breeder that forms groups containing multiple breeding females. While the distribution of reproduction among group members is fairly even (i.e. exhibits low reproductive skew), previous studies of Cape ground squirrels suggest the reproductive development of sub-adult females is inhibited by the presence of adult breeding female group mates. As reproductive delay is known to be influenced by a number of different parameters, my goal was to determine if other factors affected the timing of sexual maturity, and if so, which factors are the most influential. In this study ...


Characterization And Evaluation Of The Immunogenizity Of Chloroplast-Derived 19-Kilodalton C-Terminal Merozoite Surface Antigen 1 (Msp1) Of Plasmodium Yoelii Yoelii, Sushamadevi Kamarajugadda Jan 2006

Characterization And Evaluation Of The Immunogenizity Of Chloroplast-Derived 19-Kilodalton C-Terminal Merozoite Surface Antigen 1 (Msp1) Of Plasmodium Yoelii Yoelii, Sushamadevi Kamarajugadda

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Malaria is a protozoan disease caused in humans by four different species of the genus Plasmodium (P. falciparum, P. vivax, P. ovale, P. malarie) and in rodents by Plasmodium yoelii yoelii. It has been reported that 1.5 to 3 million deaths occur worldwide due to malaria and the DALY (Daily affected life years) reports about 0.76% of world population affected by the disease in some of the major countries like Africa, Asia, Latin America etc., Due to the development of resistance to drugs by the parasite, there is an urgent need and prime importance for the development of ...


Expression Of Heterologous Proteins In Transgenic Tobacco Chloroplasts To Produce A Biopharmaceutical And Biopolymer, Andrew Leon Devine Jan 2006

Expression Of Heterologous Proteins In Transgenic Tobacco Chloroplasts To Produce A Biopharmaceutical And Biopolymer, Andrew Leon Devine

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

The chloroplast has been demonstrated to be an ideal compartment to accumulate certain proteins or their biosynthetic products that would be harmful if they were accumulated in the cytoplasm. Hyper-expression of foreign proteins in chloroplast transgenics has accumulated up to 46% total soluble protein, this is possible due to the ~100 chloroplast genomes per chloroplast and ~100 chloroplasts per cell which can therefore, contain up to 10,000 copies of the transgene. Maternal gene inheritance of plastids in most crop plants results in natural gene containment. Chloroplast transformation also eliminates positional effects that are frequently observed with nuclear transformation and ...


Bioinformatic Analysis Of Solanaceae Chloroplast Genomes And Characterization Of An Arabidopsis Protein Disulfide Isomerase In Transgenic Tobacco Chloroplasts, Justin James Grevich Jan 2006

Bioinformatic Analysis Of Solanaceae Chloroplast Genomes And Characterization Of An Arabidopsis Protein Disulfide Isomerase In Transgenic Tobacco Chloroplasts, Justin James Grevich

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Throughout history, traditional plant breeding has been used to provide resistance to pests, disease and other forms of environmental stress, as well as to increase yield and improve upon quality and processing attributes. Over the last decade, the advancement in sequencing technology and bioinformatic analysis has unleashed a wealth of knowledge about chloroplast genetic organization and evolution. The lack of complete plastid genome sequences is one of the major limitations in advancing plastid genetic engineering to other useful crops. This is due to the fact that plastid genome sequences are essential for the identification of endogenous regulatory sequences and optimal ...


Studies On The Novel Function Of Amyloid Precursor Protein In Glial Differentiation Of Neural Stem Cells, Young-Don Kwak Jan 2006

Studies On The Novel Function Of Amyloid Precursor Protein In Glial Differentiation Of Neural Stem Cells, Young-Don Kwak

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Although amyloid β (Aβ) deposition has been a hallmark of Alzheimer’s disease (AD), the physiological function of amyloid precursor protein (APP) is not clear. Our results suggested that high concentration of APP induces glial differentiation while physiological level of APP promotes migration and differentiation of neural stem cell (HNSC). HNSCs were mainly differentiated into astrocytes when they are transplanted into APP transgenic mouse brain or treated with a high concentration of secreted-type APP (sAPP) in culture. Staurosporine (STS) induced a distinctive astrocytic morphology in NT-2/D1 neural progenitor cells with expressions of APP and astrocyte-specific markers, glial fibrillary acidic ...


Phospholipase A2mechanism Of Interfacial Activation,An Interdiscliplinary Approach, Kathleen N. Nemec Jan 2006

Phospholipase A2mechanism Of Interfacial Activation,An Interdiscliplinary Approach, Kathleen N. Nemec

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Phospholipase A2 (PLA2) is an enzyme that hydrolyzes the sn-2-ester bond of membrane phospholipids and liberates arachidonic acid, which is converted to eicosanoids that act as potent mediators of inflammation and allergy. As such this enzyme plays a crucial role in many homeostatic physiological and immunologic processes and disease progression. PLA2s undergo substantial increase in activity upon binding to cellular membranes. This effect of interfacial activation is well recognized, yet its structural and physical aspects are poorly understood. In this work, we have employed the interdisciplinary methods of molecular biology, biochemistry, biophysics, bioinformatics and computational biology, in order to elucidate ...


Use Of Cerium Oxide Nanoparticles For Protection Against Radiation-Induced Cell Death, Jimmie Colon Jan 2006

Use Of Cerium Oxide Nanoparticles For Protection Against Radiation-Induced Cell Death, Jimmie Colon

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

The ability of engineered cerium oxide nanoparticles to confer radioprotection was examined. Rat astrocytes were treated with cerium oxide nanoparticles to a final concentration of 10 nanomolar, irradiated with a single 10 Gy dose of ionizing radiation and cell death was evaluated by propidium iodine uptake at 24 and 48 hours after radiation insult. Treatment of rat astrocytes with nanoceria resulted in an approximate 3-fold decrease in radiation induced death. These results suggest that the nanoceria are conferring protection from radiation induced cell death. Further experiments with human cells were conducted. Human normal and tumor cells (MCF-7 and CRL8798) were ...


Is The Exotic Brazilian Pepper, Schinus Terebinthifolius, A Threat To Mangrove Ecosystems In Florida?, Melinda Donnelly Jan 2006

Is The Exotic Brazilian Pepper, Schinus Terebinthifolius, A Threat To Mangrove Ecosystems In Florida?, Melinda Donnelly

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Mangrove ecosystems are critical to Florida, providing economic resources to humans, and untold ecological resources to estuarine organisms. In Florida's estuaries, mangrove ecosystems have suffered significant losses due to natural and human disturbances; these disturbances potentially leave mangrove communities vulnerable to invasion by the opportunistic exotic, Schinus terebinthifolius (Brazilian pepper). Prior experiments have suggested that Schinus terebinthifolius is unable to survive under marine conditions and poses no long term threat to mangrove systems. However, this contradicts field observations where Schinus terebinthifolius was found growing in the intertidal zone of Mosquito Lagoon alongside three native species of mangroves, Rhizophora mangle ...


Effects Of Patch Size And Matrix Type On Bird Assemblages Within Central Florida Cypress Domes, Julia Noran Jan 2006

Effects Of Patch Size And Matrix Type On Bird Assemblages Within Central Florida Cypress Domes, Julia Noran

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

The numerous studies on the effects of patch size on bird assemblages have produced varied results. I studied the effects of patch size and surrounding matrix on bird assemblages within central Florida cypress domes. My null hypothesis was that bird assemblages within cypress domes are unaffected by dome size or development in the matrix around the dome. My alternative hypothesis was that differences in bird assemblages are correlated with size and the degree of development within the matrix. I classified a pool of over a thousand domes according to three size categories and four matrix types. Three representatives for each ...


Predicting Risks Of Invasion Of Caulerpa Species In Florida, Christian Glardon Jan 2006

Predicting Risks Of Invasion Of Caulerpa Species In Florida, Christian Glardon

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Invasions of exotic species are one of the primary causes of biodiversity loss on our planet (National Research Council 1995). In the marine environment, all habitat types including estuaries, coral reefs, mud flats, and rocky intertidal shorelines have been impacted (e.g. Bertness et al. 2001). Recently, the topic of invasive species has caught the public's attention. In particular, there is worldwide concern about the aquarium strain of the green alga Caulerpa taxifolia (Vahl) C. Agardh that was introduced to the Mediterranean Sea in 1984 from the Monaco Oceanographic Museum. Since that time, it has flourished in thousands of ...


Wikipdf - A Tool To Help Scientists Understand The Literature Of The Biological, Health, And Life Sciences, David Calloway Jan 2006

Wikipdf - A Tool To Help Scientists Understand The Literature Of The Biological, Health, And Life Sciences, David Calloway

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Biological sciences literature can be extraordinarily difficult to understand. Papers are commonly filled with terminology unique to a particular sub-discipline. Readers with expertise outside that sub-discipline often have difficulty understanding information the author is trying to convey. The WikiPDF project that is the subject of this thesis helps readers understand the biological sciences literature by automatically generating a customized glossary for each page of any technical paper available in Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF) format. WikiPDF relies on the Wikipedia®, an on-line encyclopedia created and supported by a host of volunteers, as a source of definitions used in its glossaries ...


Limnological And Landscape Factors Affecting Use Of Manufactured Ponds By The Invasive Cuban Treefrog (Osteopilus Septentrionalis), Terina Nusinov Jan 2006

Limnological And Landscape Factors Affecting Use Of Manufactured Ponds By The Invasive Cuban Treefrog (Osteopilus Septentrionalis), Terina Nusinov

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Exotic amphibians are often detrimental to native biotas. In Florida, the exotic Cuban Treefrog (Osteopilus septentrionalis) eats native frogs and may outcompete them for resources. Cuban Treefrogs thrive in disturbed areas and around buildings, and often breed in manufactured wetlands such as retention ponds and borrow pits. This study identified limnological, landscape, and biotic characteristics that discouraged pond use by Cuban Treefrogs and promoted use by native amphibian species. I sampled natural and manufactured ponds in Orange County, Florida, for one year, using standard methods to estimate the species richness and relative abundance of amphibians and their potential fish and ...


Regulation Of Apoptotic Alkalinization Through Phosphorylation Of Sodium Hydrogen Exchanger Via P38 Mitogen Activated Protein Kinase, Amy Greinier Jan 2006

Regulation Of Apoptotic Alkalinization Through Phosphorylation Of Sodium Hydrogen Exchanger Via P38 Mitogen Activated Protein Kinase, Amy Greinier

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Regulation of intracellular pH is responsible for many cellular processes, such as metabolism, cell cycle progression, and apoptosis. Many chemotherapeutic agents work by inducing target cells to undergo apoptosis, a cell death process still poorly understood. Previous studies demonstrated that a rise in intracellular pH activated apoptotic proteins leading to cytochrome C release. This "apoptotic alkalinization" occurred upon activation of the plasma membrane protein, sodium hydrogen exchanger-1 (NHE1), whose activity is regulated by the stress kinase p38 MAPK. In previous studies, upon cytokine withdrawal from cytokine-dependent lymphocytes induced the activity of the p38 MAP kinase which then phosphorylated the C-terminus ...


Notopleural Mutations Enhance Defects In Imaginal Disc Epithelial Morphogenesis And Macrochete Elongation Associated With Mutations In The Stubble-Stubbloid Locus, Robert Ruggiero Jan 2006

Notopleural Mutations Enhance Defects In Imaginal Disc Epithelial Morphogenesis And Macrochete Elongation Associated With Mutations In The Stubble-Stubbloid Locus, Robert Ruggiero

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

The Stubble-stubbloid locus encodes a transmembrane serine protease (Stubble) necessary for the proper formation of sensory bristles, and the morphogenesis of leg and wing epithelia. Genetic and cell biological analysis indicate a role for Stubble in actin cytoskeletal dynamics and cell shape changes in developing epithelia and bristles. Previously reported genetic interactions between Stubble and the Rho1 signaling pathway suggest Stubble influences actin cytoskeleton dynamics in developing imaginal discs through interactions with the Rho1 pathway. This work will discuss a genetic screen conducted to further investigate the role of Stubble in bristle and imaginal disc morphogenesis. From 50,000 EMS-mutagenized ...


Mapping And Characterization Of 18-5 And 12-5, Genes Which Potentially Link The Rhoa Signaling Pathway To The Ecdysone Response, Samuel Fox Jan 2006

Mapping And Characterization Of 18-5 And 12-5, Genes Which Potentially Link The Rhoa Signaling Pathway To The Ecdysone Response, Samuel Fox

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Systemic steroid hormone and intracellular signaling pathways are known to act cooperatively during the development of vertebrate and invertebrate epithelia. However, the mechanism of this interaction is poorly understood. Morphogenesis of Drosophila leg imaginal disc epithelia is regulated both by the steroid hormone 20-hydroxyecdysone (ecdysone) and the RhoA GTPase signaling pathway. Recent evidence suggests that these pathways act cooperatively to control imaginal disc morphogenesis. Thus, leg imaginal disc morphogenesis is an excellent system in which to study the interaction of steroid hormone and intracellular signaling pathways. We have identified mutations in three genes, 12-5, 18-5, and 31-6, with roles in ...


Testing The Peninsula Effect: Does It Affect Freshwater Crustaceans Inhabiting Ephemeral Wetlands On Florida's Ridges?, Debra Rinne Jan 2006

Testing The Peninsula Effect: Does It Affect Freshwater Crustaceans Inhabiting Ephemeral Wetlands On Florida's Ridges?, Debra Rinne

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

The peninsula effect is a pattern of diversity wherein species richness decreases along a peninsula from base to tip and is attributed to three mechanisms: historical processes, habitat gradients, and immigration-extinction equilibrium. Numerous studies have reported conflicting results involving the existence, cause, and validity of the peninsula effect in part because they did not account for effects of history or habitat on species richness patterns and because most previous research focused on organisms that actively disperse, which could confound results with behavioral habitat selection. Florida poses an excellent opportunity to study the peninsula effect because of its geological history and ...


Dispersal Behavior Of Mosquitofish (Gambusia Holbrooki), Shireen Alemadi Jan 2006

Dispersal Behavior Of Mosquitofish (Gambusia Holbrooki), Shireen Alemadi

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Mosquitofish (Gambusia holbrooki) are native to the southeastern United States but invasive elsewhere, and are dominant predators in many ecosystems that they inhabit. Information on dispersal behavior will help better understand and predict mosquitofish metapopulation dynamics and invasions. I experimentally tested dispersal behavior of individual mosquitofish under a range of laboratory conditions relevant to field situations. Preliminary experiments showed that gender, lighting conditions, hunger and acclimation time did not significantly affect net dispersal rate. Power analysis based on this preliminary experiment determined that 6 replicate fish were sufficient for each subsequent experiment; I used 24 fish, and each fish was ...


Monitoring A Potentially Stressful Situation In Captive Western Lowland Gorillas (Gorilla Gorilla Gorilla) Through Analysis Of Behavior And Urinary Cortisol, Douglas Skurski Jan 2006

Monitoring A Potentially Stressful Situation In Captive Western Lowland Gorillas (Gorilla Gorilla Gorilla) Through Analysis Of Behavior And Urinary Cortisol, Douglas Skurski

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

The concept of quantifying animal welfare has received much discussion, in various industries such as agriculture, laboratory, and zoological facilities. Behavioral, physical, and physiological indicators of welfare have previously been used to assess animal welfare; each having advantages and disadvantages, ranging from the practicality of data collection, to the validity of the data and how it is interpreted. Concurrent assessment of multiple measures is a more robust way to examine animal welfare, which utilizes the advantages of each measure, and provides additional information on which to base conclusions and animal care management decisions. This study used measures of behavior and ...


Predation On The Eastern Oyster Crassostrea Virginica On Intertidal Reefs Affected By Recreational Boating, Jennifer Stiner Jan 2006

Predation On The Eastern Oyster Crassostrea Virginica On Intertidal Reefs Affected By Recreational Boating, Jennifer Stiner

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Widely regarded as a keystone species and ecosystem engineer, the eastern oyster Crassostrea virginica plays a vital role in estuarine environments. Complex, three-dimensional oyster reefs act as havens for biodiversity and contribute to ecological processes. Recently, concern for this resource has arisen in Mosquito Lagoon, Florida, the southernmost limit along the Atlantic coast for undisturbed, intertidal reefs of C. virginica. Since the 1990s, intense recreational boating activity has caused atypical dead margins (mounds of disarticulated shells) to emerge on the seaward edges of oyster reefs located along major navigational channels. Once dead margins are formed, little is known about their ...


Expression And Characterization Of Mycobacterium Paratuberculosis 19kda With Posttranslational Modification, Mitra Safavi-Khasraghi Jan 2006

Expression And Characterization Of Mycobacterium Paratuberculosis 19kda With Posttranslational Modification, Mitra Safavi-Khasraghi

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Despite the fact that E. coli supports limited posttranslational modification, this bacterium has been universally used as the expression system of choice. Expression of modified proteins in E. coli may lead to expression of recombinant proteins that lack essential immunomodulatory or catalytic components essentials for infectious processes. Previously in our laboratory, pMptb#28 plasmid containing a 4.8 kb insert from M. paratuberculosis has been identified which expressed 16 kDa recombinant protein in E. coli and 19 kDa recombinant protein in Mycobacterium smegmatis. The objective of this study is to identify the ORF sequence, investigate possible posttranslational modification and characterize ...