Buenos Aires, Argentina

University of Buenos Aires

Buenos Aires, Argentina

The University of Buenos Aires is the largest university in Argentina and the second largest university by enrollment in Latin America. Founded on August 12, 1821 in the city of Buenos Aires, it consists of 13 departments, 6 hospitals, 10 museums and is linked to 4 high schools: Colegio Nacional de Buenos Aires, Escuela Superior de Comercio Carlos Pellegrini, Instituto Libre de Segunda Enseñanza and Escuela de Educación Técnica Profesional en Producción Agropecuaria y Agroalimentaria.Entry to any of the available programmes of study in the university is open to anyone with a secondary school degree; in most cases, students who have successfully completed high school must pass a first year called CBC, which stands for Ciclo Básico Común . Only upon completion of this first year may the student enter the chosen school; until then, they must attend courses in different buildings, and have up to 3 years to finish the 6 or 7 subjects assigned in two groups of 3 or 4. Each subject is of one semester duration . If someone passes all 6 subjects in their respective semester, the CBC will take only one year. Potential students of economics, instead, take a 2-year common cycle, the "CBG" , comprising 12 subjects.The UBA has no central campus. A centralized Ciudad Universitaria was started in the 1960s, but contains only two schools, with the others at different locations in Buenos Aires. Access to the university is free of charge for everyone, including foreigners. However, the postgraduate programs charge tuition fees that can be covered with research scholarships for those students with outstanding academic performance.The university has produced more Nobel Prize laureates than any other Spanish-speaking institution. It is currently the best ranked Argentine university in college and university rankings, present at number 197 of the Top Universities 2008 and at number 151-200 of the 2010 Shanghai Jiao Tong University ranking. According to the 2010 University Ranking by Academic Performance , the university is the best in Argentina and the 247th in the world, and, according to TopUniversities, it is the 46th best university in the world taking into account employer reputation. Wikipedia.

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Scientists have discovered the world's first fluorescent frog by accident while studying the pigment of polka-dot tree frogs found in the forests of Amazon basin. The South American polka dotted tree frog (Hypsiboas punctatus) appears to have dull browny-green skin dotted with red spots under normal light but herpetologist Carlos Taboada, from the University of Buenos Aires in Argentina, and colleagues found that it gives off a greenish-blue glow under ultraviolet light and in dim settings. Unlike in bioluminescent creatures whose light is produced by chemical reactions in their bodies, no chemical reaction occurs in biofluorescent organisms. Instead of giving off light from their own power source, these organisms typically absorb light at short wavelengths, transform it and then re-emit this at longer wavelengths as a different color. Biofluorescent light in animals can be produced and only becomes visible to humans when the fluorescent organism gets illuminated by external sources such as a UV light bulb. Fluorescence is more common in marine creatures such as sharks, fish, corals and is also found in the hawksbill turtle but it is rare in land animals having only previously known in parrots and in some scorpions. Prior to the discovery, biofluorescence in frogs is unheard of. The South American tree frog that Taboada and colleagues studied is the first amphibian discovered to fluoresce. It is not clear why some organisms have the special ability to glow in ultraviolet light albeit scientists have theories which include mate attraction, camouflage, and communication. For the South American fluorescent frogs, researchers suspect their fluorescence is relevant to visual perception. The amphibian's fluorescent molecules give off about 18 percent as much visible light as a full moon which is enough for related frog species to see by. Researchers want to conduct a further study of the photoreceptors found in the frog's eyes to determine if the amphibians use their fluorescence for better vision at night. "In low-light conditions, fluorescence accounts for an important fraction of the total emerging light, largely enhancing brightness of the individuals and matching the sensitivity of night vision in amphibians," the researchers wrote in their study published in journal PNAS. "These results introduce an unprecedented source of pigmentation in amphibians and highlight the potential relevance of fluorescence in visual perception in terrestrial environments." Fluorescence in marine organisms serves different purposes. Fluorescent pigment in shallow water corals acts as sunblock for the organisms as the intense ray of the sun that can cause sunburn to swimmers causes similar damage to corals and the symbiotic algae that live inside them. Scientists also found fluorescence in deep-sea corals. They think that fluorescent pigments in corals that live in deeper waters help produce more light for their symbiotic algae that need it for photosynthesis. A newly-found fluorescent species of polyps in the Red Sea is suspected of using its glow around its mouth to attract prey. The fluorescent flashlights can be seen by other invertebrates at sunset, sunrise and in the moonlight. © 2017 Tech Times, All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: INT-12-2015 | Award Amount: 2.60M | Year: 2016

EULAC Focus addresses the whole set of topics included in the Call. It delivers a significant contribution to the improvement of EUCELAC relations through a better understanding of the three dimensions selected by the call: cultural, scientific and social. The main objective is that of giving focus to these three dimensions of EUCELAC relations, with a view to determining synergies and cross-fertilization, as well as identifying asymmetries in bi-lateral and bi-regional relations. Research is focused on areas crucial to explain the current state of relations between EU and LAC, and will be pursued at two levels: a) research activities; b) strategic set of recommendations. In order to guarantee high impact, the research is pursued in six interdisciplinary WPs, organized matricially. Three are horizontal : Cross-cutting pathways, Towards a common vision for EUCELAC and Dissemination and outreach. The other three are thematic/vertical: Cultural, Scientific and Social Dimension, and not only intersect the horizontal WPs but also interact between them. To achieve the objectives, the project is organized by the multidisciplinary and well balanced consortium of19 members from 15 counties. The consortium represents a unique group of highly competent and experienced institutions, composed specifically for the purpose of this project,comprising, in both regions, Gov Research Agencies, Research institutes, Universities, University Association, and two International European LA Organizations active in analytical and policy oriented research and dissemination. EULAC Focus builds upon the outcomes of prior mapping conducted at the bi-regional level and will facilitate access to end-users, as well as feeding into the work of the EU-LAC Foundation and informing bi-regional networking activities of the JIRI and T-APs work. The number of partners has been carefully defined to ensure project goals and proper diversity, while allowing for efficient project management.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: SFS-05-2015 | Award Amount: 5.67M | Year: 2016

The world demographic growth and global climate change are major challenges for human society,hence the need to design new strategies for maintaining high crop yield in unprecedented environmental conditions.The objective of TomGEM is to design new strategies aiming to maintain high yields of fruit and vegetables at harsh temperature conditions, using tomato as a reference fleshy fruit crop.As yield is a complex trait depending on successful completion of different steps of reproductive organ development, including flower differentiation and efficient flower fertilization,TomGEM will use trans-disciplinary approaches to investigate the impact of high temperature on these developmental processes.The core of the project deals with mining and phenotyping a vast range of genetic resources to identify cultivars/genotypes displaying yield stability and to uncover loci/genes controlling flower initiation,pollen fertility and fruit set.Moreover,since high yield and elevated temperatures can be detrimental to quality traits,TomGEM will also tackle the fruit quality issue.The goal is to provide new targets and novel strategies to foster breeding of new tomato cultivars with improved yield.The main strength of TomGEM resides in the use of unique and unexplored genetic resources available to members of the consortium.It gathers expert academic researchers and private actors committed to implement a multi-actor approach based on demand driven innovation.Tomato producers and breeders are strongly involved from design to implementation of the project and until the dissemination of results.TomGEM will provide new targets and novel strategies to foster the breeding of new tomato cultivars with improved yield under suboptimal temperature conditions.TomGEM will translate scientific insights into practical strategies for better handling of interactions between genotype,environment and management to offer holistic solutions to the challenge of increasing food quality and productivity.

Tomsic D.,University of Buenos Aires
Current Opinion in Neurobiology | Year: 2016

Motion vision originated during the Cambrian explosion more than 500 million years ago, likely triggered by the race for earliest detection between preys and predators. To successfully evade a predator's attack a prey must react quickly and reliably, which imposes a common constrain to the implementation of escape responses among different species. Thus, neural circuits subserving fast escape responses are usually straightforward and contain giant neurons. This review summarizes knowledge about a small group of motion-sensitive giant neurons thought to be central in guiding the escape performance of crabs to visual stimuli. The flexibility of the escape behavior contrasts with the stiffness of the optomotor response, indicating a task-dependent early segregation of visual pathways. © 2016 Elsevier Ltd

Depino A.M.,University of Buenos Aires
Neuroscience | Year: 2015

Maternal immune activation can result in different behavioral abnormalities and brain dysfunction, depending on the nature of the inflammogen and the timing of the challenge. Few studies report the possible link between prenatal exposure to inflammation and mood disorders. Here we aimed to evaluate the effects of a single low lipopolysaccharide (LPS) injection to the dam at gestational day 9 on the offspring behavior and hippocampal function. We found that mice exposed to LPS show anxiety- and depression-related behaviors. Specifically, we found that animals prenatally exposed to LPS avoided the open arms of an elevated plus maze, the center of an open field and the lit side of a light/dark box, and they spent more time immobile in both the forced swimming and tail suspension tests, when compared with offspring of saline-injected dams. In addition, LPS mice had reduced serotonin and noradrenaline levels in the hippocampus and diminished Reelin immunoreactivity in the dentate gyrus, while their adult hippocampal neurogenesis was not affected. Results presented here support specific long-term effects of the response to a bacterial immunogen early in pregnancy, as opposed to different effects previously reported of viral immunogens and/or responses in late pregnancy. Our work adds to recent reports and stresses the relevance of considering prenatal exposure to a maternal immune response as a risk factor for mood disorders. © 2015 IBRO.

Golombek D.A.,CONICET | Rosenstein R.E.,University of Buenos Aires
Physiological Reviews | Year: 2010

Mammalian circadian rhythms are controlled by endogenous biological oscillators, including a master clock located in the hypothalamic suprachiasmatic nuclei (SCN). Since the period of this oscillation is of ∼24 h, to keep synchrony with the environment, circadian rhythms need to be entrained daily by means of Zeitgeber ("time giver") signals, such as the light-dark cycle. Recent advances in the neurophysiology and molecular biology of circadian rhythmicity allow a better understanding of synchronization. In this review we cover several aspects of the mechanisms for photic entrainment of mammalian circadian rhythms, including retinal sensitivity to light by means of novel photopigments as well as circadian variations in the retina that contribute to the regulation of retinal physiology. Downstream from the retina, we examine retinohypothalamic communication through neurotransmitter (glutamate, aspartate, pituitary adenylate cyclase-activating polypeptide) interaction with SCN receptors and the resulting signal transduction pathways in suprachiasmatic neurons, as well as putative neuron-glia interactions. Finally, we describe and analyze clock gene expression and its importance in entrainment mechanisms, as well as circadian disorders or retinal diseases related to entrainment deficits, including experimental and clinical treatments. Copyright © 2010 the American Physiological Society.

Casal J.J.,University of Buenos Aires | Casal J.J.,CONICET
Annual Review of Plant Biology | Year: 2013

The dynamic light environment of vegetation canopies is perceived by phytochromes, cryptochromes, phototropins, and UV RESISTANCE LOCUS 8 (UVR8). These receptors control avoidance responses to preclude exposure to limiting or excessive light and acclimation responses to cope with conditions that cannot be avoided. The low red/far-red ratios of shade light reduce phytochrome B activity, which allows PHYTOCHROME INTERACTING FACTORS (PIFs) to directly activate the transcription of auxin-synthesis genes, leading to shade-avoidance responses. Direct PIF interaction with DELLA proteins links gibberellin and brassinosteroid signaling to shade avoidance. Shade avoidance also requires CONSTITUTIVE PHOTOMORPHOGENESIS 1 (COP1), a target of cryptochromes, phytochromes, and UVR8. Multiple regulatory loops and the input of the circadian clock create a complex network able to respond even to subtle threats of competition with neighbors while still compensating for major environmental fluctuations such as the day-night cycles. © Copyright ©2013 by Annual Reviews. All rights reserved.

Jorge F.,University of Buenos Aires
Physiological Reviews | Year: 2010

The mechanism of epithelial fluid transport remains unsolved, which is partly due to inherent experimental difficulties. However, a preparation with which our laboratory works, the corneal endothelium, is a simple leaky secretory epithelium in which we have made some experimental and theoretical headway. As we have reported, transendothelial fluid movements can be generated by electrical currents as long as there is tight junction integrity. The direction of the fluid movement can be reversed by current reversal or by changing junctional electrical charges by polylysine. Residual endothelial fluid transport persists even when no anions (hence no salt) are being transported by the tissue and is only eliminated when all local recirculating electrical currents are. Aquaporin (AQP) 1 is the only AQP present in these cells, and its deletion in AQP1 null mice significantly affects cell osmotic permeability (by ∼40%) but fluid transport much less (∼20%), which militates against the presence of sizable water movements across the cell. In contrast, AQP1 null mice cells have reduced regulatory volume decrease (only 60% of control), which suggests a possible involvement of AQP1 in either the function or the expression of volume-sensitive membrane channels/transporters. A mathematical model of corneal endothelium we have developed correctly predicts experimental results only when paracellular electro-osmosis is assumed rather than transcellular local osmosis. Our evidence therefore suggests that the fluid is transported across this layer via the paracellular route by a mechanism that we attribute to electro-osmotic coupling at the junctions. From our findings we have developed a novel paradigm for this preparation that includes 1) paracellular fluid flow; 2) a crucial role for the junctions; 3) hypotonicity of the primary secretion; and 4) an AQP role in regulation rather than as a significant water pathway. These elements are remarkably similar to those proposed by the laboratory of Adrian Hill for fluid transport across other leaky epithelia. Copyright © 2010 the American Physiological Society.

Mininni P.D.,University of Buenos Aires
Annual Review of Fluid Mechanics | Year: 2011

This article reviews recent studies of scale interactions in magnetohydrodynamic turbulence. The present-day increase of computing power, which allows for the exploration of different configurations of turbulence in conducting flows, and the development of shell-to-shell transfer functions, has led to detailed studies of interactions between the velocity and the magnetic field and between scales. In particular, processes such as induction and dynamo action, the damping of velocity fluctuations by the Lorentz force, and the development of anisotropies can be characterized at different scales. In this context we consider three different configurations often studied in the literature: mechanically forced turbulence, freely decaying turbulence, and turbulence in the presence of a uniform magnetic field. Each configuration is of interest for different geophysical and astrophysical applications. Local and nonlocal transfers are discussed for each case. Whereas the transfer between scales of solely kinetic or solely magnetic energy is local, transfers between kinetic and magnetic fields are observed to be local or nonlocal depending on the configuration. Scale interactions in the cascade of magnetic helicity are also reviewed. Based on the results, the validity of several usual assumptions in hydrodynamic turbulence, such as isotropy of the small scales or universality, is discussed. © 2011 by Annual Reviews. All rights reserved.

Austin A.T.,University of Buenos Aires
Trends in Ecology and Evolution | Year: 2011

The classic ecological paradigm for deserts, that all processes are controlled by water availability, has limited our imagination for exploring other controls on the cycling of carbon and nutrients in aridland ecosystems. This review of recent studies identifies alternative mechanisms that challenge the idea that all soil processes in aridlands are proximately water-limited, and highlights the significance of photodegradation of aboveground litter and the overriding importance of spatial heterogeneity as a modulator of biotic responses to water availability. Aridlands currently occupy >30% of the terrestrial land surface and are expanding. It is therefore critical to incorporate these previously unappreciated mechanisms in our understanding of aridland biogeochemistry to mitigate the effects of desertification and global change. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.

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