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The traditional teaching-learning process in higher education employs strategies that position students as recipients of information transmitted by the teacher, which is conceptualized as knowledge. However, the reality in which we live, including new generational groups’ characteristics, requires implementing training solutions that meet individuals' needs in the development of skills or know-how. Thus, deploying suitable solutions to society through a framework that forms individuals capable of continuously seeking knowledge, creating and innovating, is crucial. The "Reproduction of an Environment of Innovation in the Classroom" (RAIS) is a product-based learning and evaluation strategy where the student is actively involved in constructing and generating knowledge. It allows developing the programmatic competencies in engineering courses to attain a feasible product. The RAIS strategy has been applied in Physical chemistry for Chemical Engineers and Industrial Chemistry courses. Students successfully formulated a product using the know-how attained in each course. In addition, this strategy increased motivation compared to other traditional courses, developing the ability to deploy and find solutions in work environments with multidisciplinary groups.
13 Jan 2023
Mechanisms of α-Syn Aggregation In Vitro
The aggregation of proteins into amyloid fibers is linked to more than forty still incurable cellular and neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s disease (PD), multiple system atrophy, Alzheimer’s disease and type 2 diabetes, among others. The process of amyloid formation is a main feature of cell degeneration and disease pathogenesis. Despite being methodologically challenging, a complete understanding of the molecular mechanism of aggregation, especially in the early stages, is essential to find new biological targets for innovative therapies. Here, chemical and biophysical methodologies that provided insights on Alpha-synuclein aggregation that would help to investigate other less-known aggregation-prone peptides and proteins were presented.
03 Jan 2023
Nanomaterials to Enhance Polymerase Chain Reaction
Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) is one of the most common technologies used to produce millions of copies of targeted nucleic acid in vitro and has become an indispensable technique in molecular biology. However, it suffers from low efficiency and specificity problems, false positive results, and so on. Although many conditions can be optimized to increase PCR yield, such as the magnesium ion concentration, the DNA polymerases, the number of cycles, and so on, they are not all-purpose and the optimization can be case dependent. Nano-sized materials offer a possible solution to improve both the quality and productivity of PCR. Nanoparticles (NPs) have attracted significant attention and gradually penetrated the field of life sciences because of their unique chemical and physical properties, such as their large surface area and small size effect, which have greatly promoted developments in life science and technology. Additionally, PCR technology assisted by NPs (NanoPCR) such as gold NPs (Au NPs), quantum dots (QDs), and carbon nanotubes (CNTs), etc., have been developed to significantly improve the specificity, efficiency, and sensitivity of PCR and to accelerate the PCR reaction process.
28 Dec 2022
Voltammetric Techniques in Assessing the Food Quality
Generally, the detection of analytes or molecules present in food materials interferes with the chromophore moieties in the food. Some of the common problems with the use of conventional methods in determining food quality are low sensitivity to redox changes, turbidity, low spectrum resolution, and scattering issues related to the sample. Moreover, the miniaturization and portability of detectors are the biggest disadvantages of conventional methods. Therefore, there is a huge demand for quick, robust, selective, and easy methods, such as voltammetric methods, for determining the food’s quality. They exhibit a higher level of selectivity for the redox reactions, and a faster response. They are very simple, economical, and their portability with unlimited miniaturization has made them an ideal and popular choice for assessing the food quality compared with other analytical methods.
23 Dec 2022
Biological Properties of Anthocyanin Pigments in Blood Oranges
Anthocyanins are natural pigments that give a red, purple, and blue color to many plant, flower, fruit, and vegetable species. Their presence within the genus Citrus was first reported in 1916, and it is well-known that the red color of the flesh and rind of blood (red or pigmented) oranges (Citrus sinensis L. Osbeck) is due to the presence of anthocyanins. They are also present in the young shoots, flowers, and peel of lemon (Citrus limon (L.) Burm. f.), citron (Citrus medica L.), and other citrus species.
22 Dec 2022
The Peculiar Properties of Human mitoNEET
The outer mitochondrial membrane (OMM) protein mitoNEET, also known as CDGSH Fe-S domain-containing protein-1 (CISD1), is composed of 108 amino acids, encompassing a N-terminal transmembrane helix (residues 14–32) that anchors the protein to the OMM, and a cytosolic portion (residues 33–108) that has been widely investigated through X-ray crystallography, showing a unique, highly conserved folding.
05 Dec 2022
Trending Methods for Rapid Cannabinoids Detection
Roadside testing of illicit drugs such as tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) requires simple, rapid, and cost-effective methods. The need for non-invasive detection tools has led to the development of selective and sensitive platforms, able to detect phyto- and synthetic cannabinoids by means of their main metabolites in breath, saliva, and urine samples. One may estimate the time passed from drug exposure and the frequency of use by corroborating the detection results with pharmacokinetic data. Modified surfaces can also act as filters that allow only the target analyte to participate in the electrode reaction. In the case of cannabinoids, as in the case of other drugs, the investigation of the mechanism of action within the organism is the basis of biosensor development.
18 Nov 2022
General Aspects of Carbon Dot and Polymer Composites
Carbon dot-based composite materials have been extensively developed for versatile biomedical applications, such as drug delivery, tissue engineering, bioimaging, biosensors, and photothermal cancer therapy, owing to their excellent mechanical properties, electrical and thermal conductivity, large surface-to-volume ratio, and biocompatibility. For instance, the hydrophobicity and delocalized π-electrons of carbon dots enable insoluble drug loading in carbon composite-based drug delivery carriers. In addition, carbon dot-based materials are suitable for optical and electrochemical biosensor applications owing to their intrinsic properties.
01 Nov 2022
Willardiine and Its Analogues
Willardiine was first identified by Rolf Gimelin in 1959 from the extracts of seeds of Acacia willardiana. Structurally it corresponds to (2S)-2-amino-3-(2,4-dioxopyrimidin-1-yl)propanoic acid (1) and carrying an uracil moiety it can be ascribed to the category of nucleoamino acids. Willardiine is synthesized by the single specific enzyme uracilylalanine synthase, and the N–heterocyclic moiety uracil obtained by the orotate pathway proved to be an effective bioisostere for the distal carboxyl group of L-glutamate. Different aspects on both chemistry and biotechnological applications of willardine/willardine-analogues and nucleopeptides will be reviewed herein.
18 Oct 2022
Lignocellulosic Biomass as a Renewable Source
Lignocellulosic biomass is the primary structural component of plant matter and is mostly inedible, generally referring to organic materials such as wood, grass, and agricultural crop residues. Biomass is a plentiful and carbon-neutral renewable energy source that may be used to create platform chemicals and fuels, especially considering that up to 75% of initial energy can be converted into biofuels.
13 Oct 2022
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