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Physical studies of giant vesicles on optimizing the use of photo protective molecules of biological membranes

Grant number: 12/05613-8
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): June 01, 2012
Effective date (End): May 31, 2013
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Biophysics
Principal researcher:Omar Mertins
Grantee:Guilherme Godtsfriedt dos Reis
Home Institution: Instituto de Física (IF). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil


With this project we intend to enhance undergraduate research and support studies of photo protection of biological membrane models, which is one of the topics of research in progress under the coordination of Prof. Rosangela Itri and developed in the post doctoral project of Omar Mertins. Through microscopic monitoring and sometimes with use of mechanical and electrical techniques coupled with optical microscopy, giant unilamellar vesicles of different molecular composition are photo irradiated in the presence of promoters of lipid oxidations (such as methylene blue). The lipid damage will be minimized with the use of molecules able to compete in complexation or inactivation of reactive oxygen radicals, generated in the dispersion media of the vesicles. The physical properties and stability of the vesicles membrane will be evaluated according to the type, concentration and protection ability of the photo protective molecules derived from flavonoids and carotenoids. The academic student will be guided in carrying out experiments as well as in all steps inherent to research methods related to the project, aiming its qualifying in scientific training.

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