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Bioluminescent coleopterans (fireflies) of the Atlantic Rainforest: biodiversity and use as environmental indicators

Grant number: 06/51911-0
Support type:BIOTA-FAPESP Program - Regular Research Grants
Duration: June 01, 2007 - November 30, 2009
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Biology
Principal Investigator:Vadim Viviani
Grantee:Vadim Viviani
Home Institution: Universidade Federal de São Carlos (UFSCAR). Campus de Sorocaba. Sorocaba , SP, Brazil

Abstract

Brazil is the country with the greatest diversity of species of bioluminescent coleopterans, concentrating around 25 per cent of the species described and probably an even higher number not described. In addition to constituting important species from the biotechnological point of view, as they provide bioluminescent enzymes and substrates with a bioanalytical value, this variety of species has great potential for use as environmental indicators of luminous pollution, in urban centers and for the recovery of degraded areas, as has been done in Japan for some years.We plan to continue our cataloguing of the biodiversity of the Lampyridae, Phengodidae and Elateridae families in the Atlantic Rainforest bioma of the State of São Paulo, to study their evolution from the molecular aspect and to use some key-species (based on my long experience with this taxonomic group in Brazil), as environmental indicators of marshy and brook areas. (AU)