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1.  Molecular characterisation and biomass and metabolite production of Lactobacillus reuteri LPB P01–001: A potential probiotic 
Brazilian Journal of Microbiology  2012;43(1):135-147.
Lactobacillus reuteri LPB P01–001 was isolated from the gastrointestinal tract of wild swine and was characterised by biochemical testing and sequencing of gene 16S rRNA. A simple and low-cost culture medium based on cane sugar (2.5% p/v) and yeast extract (1% p/v) was used in the production of this probiotic. The fermentative conditions were a) pH control at 6.5 and b) no pH control; both were set at 37°C in a 12 L slightly stirred tank bioreactor. Fermentation parameters such as the specific growth rate, productivity and yield of biomass, lactic and acetic acid levels were determined. L. reuteri LPB P01–001 behaves as an aciduric bacteria because it grows better in a low pH medium without pH control. However, the lactic acid production yield was practically half (9.22 g.L-1) of that obtained under a constant pH of 6.5, which reached 30.5 g.L-1 after 28 hours of fermentation. The acetic acid production was also higher under pH-controlled fermentation, reaching 10.09 g.L-1after 28 hours of fermentation. These parameters may raise the interest of those committed to the efficient production of a probiotic agent for swine.
doi:10.1590/S1517-838220120001000015
PMCID: PMC3768958  PMID: 24031812
Probiotic; Lactobacillus reuteri; Molecular characterisation; Fermentation parameters; Lactic and acetic acids
2.  Improving Cry8Ka toxin activity towards the cotton boll weevil (Anthonomus grandis) 
BMC Biotechnology  2011;11:85.
Background
The cotton boll weevil (Anthonomus grandis) is a serious insect-pest in the Americas, particularly in Brazil. The use of chemical or biological insect control is not effective against the cotton boll weevil because of its endophytic life style. Therefore, the use of biotechnological tools to produce insect-resistant transgenic plants represents an important strategy to reduce the damage to cotton plants caused by the boll weevil. The present study focuses on the identification of novel molecules that show improved toxicity against the cotton boll weevil. In vitro directed molecular evolution through DNA shuffling and phage display screening was applied to enhance the insecticidal activity of variants of the Cry8Ka1 protein of Bacillus thuringiensis.
Results
Bioassays carried out with A. grandis larvae revealed that the LC50 of the screened mutant Cry8Ka5 toxin was 3.15-fold higher than the wild-type Cry8Ka1 toxin. Homology modelling of Cry8Ka1 and the Cry8Ka5 mutant suggested that both proteins retained the typical three-domain Cry family structure. The mutated residues were located mostly in loops and appeared unlikely to interfere with molecular stability.
Conclusions
The improved toxicity of the Cry8Ka5 mutant obtained in this study will allow the generation of a transgenic cotton event with improved potential to control A. grandis.
doi:10.1186/1472-6750-11-85
PMCID: PMC3179717  PMID: 21906288
Anthonomus grandis; Bacillus thuringiensis; Cotton; DNA shuffling; Phage display; Molecular modeling

Results 1-2 (2)