Quito, Ecuador

Universidad San Francisco de Quito USFQ is a liberal-arts, non-profit, private university located in Quito, Ecuador. It was the first totally private self-financed university in Ecuador and the first liberal-arts institution in the Andean region.Academically, USFQ ranks as one of the three-top universities in the ranking of Ecuadorian universities , issued by the Ecuadorian Council of Evaluation and Accreditation of High Education . In 2009, it was ranked first in Ecuador in relation to the number of peer-reviewed scientific publications.The university now enrolls 5,500 students, 4,500 of whom are undergraduates. The university each year has about 100 indigenous students and 1000 international students participate in USFQ academic programs. USFQ has developed a scholarship program for indigenous students, offering full scholarships to the best students of public high schools throughout Ecuador. Although USFQ receives no funding from the government of Ecuador, its faculty comprises one-half of all the people in that nation who hold a doctorate.USFQ main campus is located in Cumbayá, outside of Quito , where students use a library, education and research laboratories, classrooms, and seven restaurants. USFQ is the only university in the world that owns a campus in the Galapagos Islands, and a campus in the Yasuni Biosphere Reserve , one of Earth's most biodiverse area. Wikipedia.

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Niebieskikwiat D.,San Francisco de Quito University | Sanchez R.D.,Bariloche Atomic Center
Journal of Physics Condensed Matter | Year: 2012

We present a study of the magnetic properties of the Pr 0.5Sr 0.5xCa xMnO 3 manganite (x=0.1 and 0.2) in the temperature region where phase separation occurs. This state is characterized by the presence of ferromagnetic (FM) inclusions inside an antiferromagnetic (AFM) matrix. The evolution of the magnetization (M) with magnetic field shows the existence of a critical field, H C, above which M rapidly increases, indicating a sudden expansion of the FM volume against the AFM one. We analyze this behavior and the response of the magnetic susceptibility at low fields (H

Portilla J.,San Francisco de Quito University | Sosa J.,San Francisco de Quito University | Cavaleri L.,CNR Marine Science Institute
Renewable Energy | Year: 2013

In identifying the most convenient zones for harvesting wave energy, it is natural to be attracted by the areas where we find the highest mean energy values. The obvious examples are the storm belts. A more careful analysis reveals that for practical use other factors need to be taken into account. Some of the main ones are the energy spread in frequency and direction, and its seasonality, without discussing the cost of the structure basically related to the conditions to be withstood. This reveals that other areas, in particular the equatorial ones, can be conveniently used, and be possibly advantageous from various points of view. Based on the results of the ECMWF ERA-Interim reanalysis and of altimeter data, we have carried out a comparative analysis between two locations with opposite characteristics, in the North Atlantic and in the Equatorial Pacific respectively. The quantified results confirm that less energetic, but more regular and less extreme, areas have a potential comparable to that of the classically considered storm belts. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.

Guevara-Aguirre J.,San Francisco de Quito University | Guevara-Aguirre J.,Institute Endocrinologia IEMYR | Rosenbloom A.L.,Florida College
Diabetologia | Year: 2015

Obesity with insulin-resistant diabetes and increased cancer risk is a global problem. We consider the alterations of metabolism attendant on the underlying pathogenic overnutrition and the role of the growth hormone (GH)–IGF-1 axis in this interaction. Obesity-induced insulin resistance is a determinant of diabetes. Excess glucose, and an elevated concentration of insulin acting through its own receptors along with complex interactions with the IGF-1 system, will add extra fuel and fuel signalling for malignant growth and induce anti-apoptotic activities, permitting proliferation of forbidden clones. In Ecuador there are ~100 living adults with lifelong IGF-1 deficiency caused by a GH receptor (GHR) mutation who, despite a high percentage of body fat, have markedly increased insulin sensitivity compared with age- and BMI-matched control relatives, and no instances of diabetes, which is present in 6% of unaffected relatives. Only 1 of 20 deceased individuals with GHR deficiency died of cancer vs 20% of ~1,500 relatives. Fewer DNA breaks and increased apoptosis occurred in cell cultures exposed to oxidant agents following addition of serum from GHR-deficient individuals vs serum from control relatives. These changes were reversible by adding IGF-1 to the serum from the GHR-deficient individuals. The reduction in central regulators of pro-ageing signalling thus appears to be the result of an absence of GHR function. The complex inter-relationship of obesity, diabetes and cancer risk is related to excess insulin and fuel supply, in the presence of heightened anti-apoptosis and uninhibited DNA damage when GHR function is normal. © 2014, Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.

Leeman M.,MIP Technologies AB | Santacruz S.,San Francisco de Quito University
Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry | Year: 2011

Asymmetrical-flow field-flow fractionation combined with multiangle light scattering and refractive index detection has been revealed to be a powerful tool for starch characterization. It is based on size separation according to the hydrodynamic diameter of the starch components. Starch from a wide range of different botanical sources were studied, including normal starch and high-amylose and high-amylopectin starch. The starch was dissolved by heat treatment at elevated pressure in a laboratory autoclave. This gave clear solutions with no granular residues. Amylose retrogradation was prevented by using freshly dissolved samples. Programmed cross flow starting at 1.0 mL min-1 and decreasing exponentially with a half-life of 4 min was utilised. The starches showed two size populations representing mainly amylose and mainly amylopectin with an overlapping region where amylose and amylopectin were possibly co-eluted. Most of the first population had molar masses below 106 g mol-1, and most of the second size population had molar masses above 107 g mol-1. Large differences were found in the relative amounts of the two populations, the molar mass, and hydrodynamic diameters, depending on the plant source and its varieties. © 2010 Springer-Verlag.

Pieterse C.M.J.,University Utrecht | Pieterse C.M.J.,Center for BioSystems Genomics | Van Der Does D.,University Utrecht | Zamioudis C.,University Utrecht | And 2 more authors.
Annual Review of Cell and Developmental Biology | Year: 2012

Plant hormones have pivotal roles in the regulation of plant growth, development, and reproduction. Additionally, they emerged as cellular signal molecules with key functions in the regulation of immune responses to microbial pathogens, insect herbivores, and beneficial microbes. Their signaling pathways are interconnected in a complex network, which provides plants with an enormous regulatory potential to rapidly adapt to their biotic environment and to utilize their limited resources for growth and survival in a cost-efficient manner. Plants activate their immune system to counteract attack by pathogens or herbivorous insects. Intriguingly, successful plant enemies evolved ingenious mechanisms to rewire the plant's hormone signaling circuitry to press or evade host immunity. Evidence is emerging that beneficial root-inhabiting microbes also hijack the hormone-regulated immune signaling network to establish a prolonged mutualistic association, highlighting the central role of plant hormones in the regulation of plant growth and survival. Copyright © 2012 by Annual Reviews. All rights reserved.

Borissov G.,Lancaster University | Hoeneisen B.,San Francisco de Quito University
Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology | Year: 2013

The D0 Collaboration has measured the like-sign dimuon charge asymmetry in pp̄ collisions at the Fermilab Tevatron collider. The result is significantly different from the standard model expectation of CP violation in mixing. In this paper we consider the possible causes of this asymmetry and identify one standard model source not considered before, namely, CP violation in interference of decays of B0 with and without mixing to flavor nonspecific states fi, followed by the decay fi→μX. The discrepancy between the D0 measurement and the standard model expectation is reduced to less than 3 standard deviations. © 2013 American Physical Society.

Trueba G.,San Francisco de Quito University | Dunthorn M.,University of Kaiserslautern
PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases | Year: 2012

The standard view of modern human infectious diseases is that many of them arose during the Neolithic when animals were first domesticated, or afterwards. Here we review recent genetic and molecular clock estimates that point to a much older Paleolithic origin (2.5 million years ago to 10,000 years ago) of some of these diseases. During part of this ancient period our early human ancestors were still isolated in Africa. We also discuss the need for investigations of the origin of these diseases in African primates and other animals that have been the original source of many neglected tropical diseases. © 2012 Trueba, Dunthorn.

Cazorla M.,San Francisco de Quito University
Atmospheric Pollution Research | Year: 2016

In this study, a hypothesis based on observations is offered to explain levels of ambient ozone in Quito, a busy urban center located at high altitude along the equatorial Andes. Supporting data includes first-time measurements of boundary layer depths in addition to ozone, NO (nitric oxide), and oxidized nitrogen observations. Mixing layer measurements were taken in June and July 2014 and in April 2015. The air quality data set is presented for the months of July through September 2014. From a total of four midday soundings launched under sunny conditions, a deep mixing layer up to 2200 magl (meters above ground level) was found only once when surface temperature was unusually high. In the other three cases, layered structures were found with the top of the mixing layer at 687 magl on average. These measurements were obtained when surface temperatures were within the usual range. Furthermore, the morning boundary layer depth was measured twice between 07:00 and 08:00. On average, a depth of 185 magl was determined. Air quality measurements for the study period show that ozone stayed below 55 ppbv while NO levels were routinely higher than 100 ppbv in the morning rush hour, and oxidized nitrogen stayed high during daytime. Observations of a generally shallow boundary layer indicate that the environment at this Andean location has the potential to accumulate pollutants. Thus, vertical dilution alone is unable to explain the observed low levels of ambient ozone. When ozone reached the highest values in the second half of September 2014, it was found that it increases with decreasing NO levels during daylight hours between 11:00 and 16:00. Therefore, air quality observations along with findings of shallow mixing layers suggest that inhibition of ozone production potentially occurs due to a NOx-saturated chemical regime. © 2015 Turkish National Committee for Air Pollution Research and Control. All rights reserved.

De la Torre S.,San Francisco de Quito University
International Zoo Yearbook | Year: 2012

Neotropical primates are a highly diverse and ecologically important group that is facing several conservation problems. This review aims to contribute to understanding the nature and extent of these problems by presenting relevant information on the conservation status of Ecuadorian primates. In the recent evaluation for the Red Data Book of Ecuadorian Mammals, 53% of 21 primate taxa (20 species - 21 subspecies) were considered to be threatened (19% Vulnerable, 24% Endangered and 10% Critically Endangered), 43% are Near Threatened and 5% are Data Deficient; none were considered as Least Concern. Conservation actions need to rely on objective information that is not always available. Most primatological studies have been carried out in two protected areas in Ecuadorian Amazon (Cuyabeno Reserve and Yasuní National Park). There have been fewer studies in the west of the Andes. To enhance conservation actions, we need to determine the geographic distribution and to evaluate the impacts of habitat loss, hunting and illegal trade for all primate taxa. Collaboration between zoos and academic institutions to carry out studies with captive populations and to raise public awareness of conservation issues is fundamental. Direct participation of local communities may assure the continuity of the studies and the effectiveness of conservation actions. © 2012 The Zoological Society of London.

Hoeneisen B.,San Francisco de Quito University
Physics Letters, Section B: Nuclear, Elementary Particle and High-Energy Physics | Year: 2016

We consider Λ and Λ¯ production in a wide range of proton scattering experiments. The produced Λ and Λ¯ may or may not contain a diquark remnant of the beam proton. The ratio of these two production mechanisms is found to be a simple universal function r=[κ/(yp−y)]i of the rapidity difference yp−y of the beam proton and the produced Λ or Λ¯, valid over four orders of magnitude, from r≈0.01 to r≈100, with κ=2.86±0.03±0.07, and i=4.39±0.06±0.15. © 2016 The Author

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