The expansion of cities, the agricultural and industrial activities that have occurred in the last decades have caused the fragment of the forest ecosystems. Given the intense industrial and urban development along the Atlantic coast, from the northeast to the south of Brazil, the environmental disturbance in the vegetation of this region is serious. Forest ecosystems are naturally subject to various types of stress caused by climatic oscillations when exposed to environmental disturbances in the region where they are located, such as water deficit and excess solar radiation. Oxidative stress caused by environmental disturbances can lead to the formation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and nitrogen (RNs) at the interface of the cell wall, oxidative destruction of plasma membrane lipids and proteins, and chain production of other free radicals and reactive intermediates. The major ROS are superoxide radical anion, hydrogen peroxide, hydroxyl radical, singlet oxygen and malondialdehyde (MDA), and the main ERN is nitric oxide. There is a lack of studies regarding the detection of ROS in vegetation when exposed to oxidative stress caused by natural environmental disturbances. The bryophytes represent the second largest group of terrestrial plants and, in Brazil, the Atlantic Forest has the highest number of species. They are capable of adaptation in strict ecological ranges, are very sensitive to environmental changes and can be used as bioindicators of climatic and microclimatic conditions, thus characterizing an efficient application for experimental studies in stressed environments, for example by the increase of UV- B and water deficit. Thus, this project aims to contribute to the knowledge of the mechanisms of formation of EROs and ERNs, defense mechanisms and metabolomics in species of bryophytes present in forest fragments in São Paulo and for the understanding of cellular events related to the control of the survival of these species when exposed to environmental stress gradients caused by UV-B radiation and water deficit.
News published in Agência FAPESP Newsletter about the scholarship: