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Full-Text Articles in Life Sciences

Evidence Of Climate Variability And Tropical Cyclone Activity From Diatom Assemblage Dynamics In Coastal Southwest Florida, Emily R. Nodine Nov 2014

Evidence Of Climate Variability And Tropical Cyclone Activity From Diatom Assemblage Dynamics In Coastal Southwest Florida, Emily R. Nodine

FIU Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Estuaries are dynamic on many spatial and temporal scales. Distinguishing effects of unpredictable events from cyclical patterns can be challenging but important to predict the influence of press and pulse drivers in the face of climate change. Diatom assemblages respond rapidly to changing environmental conditions and characterize change on multiple time scales. The goals of this research were to 1) characterize diatom assemblages in the Charlotte Harbor watershed, their relationships with water quality parameters, and how they change in response to climate; and 2) use assemblages in sediment cores to interpret past climate changes and tropical cyclone activity.

Diatom assemblages ...


Habitat Use Of The Key Largo Woodrat (Neotoma Floridana Smalli), Lauren J. Barth Nov 2014

Habitat Use Of The Key Largo Woodrat (Neotoma Floridana Smalli), Lauren J. Barth

FIU Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Key Largo woodrats are an endangered subspecies with an extremely limited habitat. This study sought to understand woodrat habitat preferences in order to guide management. Woodrats build stick nests from natural and artificial materials, so nest distribution and nest occupancy were used as indicators of preference. Distribution was determined by nest surveys, and remote cameras were used to assess occupancy. Forest structure, human disturbance, nest, and animal presence metrics were also collected. More nests were found along abandoned roads than along forest transects and more artificial nests were occupied than natural nests. These findings indicate that woodrats prefer areas with ...


Development Of A Methodology That Couples Satellite Remote Sensing Measurements To Spatial-Temporal Distribution Of Soil Moisture In The Vadose Zone Of The Everglades National Park, Luis G. Perez Aug 2014

Development Of A Methodology That Couples Satellite Remote Sensing Measurements To Spatial-Temporal Distribution Of Soil Moisture In The Vadose Zone Of The Everglades National Park, Luis G. Perez

FIU Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Spatial-temporal distribution of soil moisture in the vadose zone is an important aspect of the hydrological cycle that plays a fundamental role in water resources management, including modeling of water flow and mass transport. The vadose zone is a critical transfer and storage compartment, which controls the partitioning of energy and mass linked to surface runoff, evapotranspiration and infiltration. This dissertation focuses on integrating hydraulic characterization methods with remote sensing technologies to estimate the soil moisture distribution by modeling the spatial coverage of soil moisture in the horizontal and vertical dimensions with high temporal resolution.

The methodology consists of using ...


Characterization Of Rhizobial Diversity And Relationship Of Rhizobial Partner And Legume Performance In Four South Florida Pine Rockland Soils, Vanessa Sánchez Mar 2014

Characterization Of Rhizobial Diversity And Relationship Of Rhizobial Partner And Legume Performance In Four South Florida Pine Rockland Soils, Vanessa Sánchez

FIU Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Pine rocklands are endangered ecosystems unique to south Florida, the Bahamas and Cuba. As a result of their karstic calcium carbonate­rich soil, these systems are limited in phosphorus and nitrogen, making symbiotic associations critical to plant growth. Four leguminous species (Cajanus cajan, Chamaecrista fasciculata, Tephrosia angustissima, and Abrus precatorious) were used to determine the relationship between rhizobial partners and plant performance, and the symbiosis related gene nifH was amplified to characterize the diversity of rhizobial symbionts. Plants were grown in soils from four different south Florida pine rocklands, and a salinity treatment was added to determine how storm surge ...


Spatio-Temporal Analysis Of Chilling Events In Mangrove Forests Of South Florida, Bina Thapa Mar 2014

Spatio-Temporal Analysis Of Chilling Events In Mangrove Forests Of South Florida, Bina Thapa

FIU Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Chilling events are infrequent but important disturbances in subtropical Florida. When temperatures drop to near freezing, significant mortality often accrues in mangrove forests. Chilling events play a role in maintaining structural diversity in mangrove forests, and in limiting mangrove poleward distribution. I examined the spatio-temporal distribution of chilling events in mangrove forests of southern Biscayne Bay by using Landsat TM5 images since 1989. Damage was usually confined to dwarf mangrove forest, especially when chilling temperatures were moderate and short in duration. However, damage from extended and severe freezes such as in January 2010 impacted larger trees as well. Recovery is ...


Speciation, Metabolism, Toxicity, And Protein-Binding Of Different Arsenic Species In Human Cells, Szabina A. Stice Mar 2014

Speciation, Metabolism, Toxicity, And Protein-Binding Of Different Arsenic Species In Human Cells, Szabina A. Stice

FIU Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Despite of its known toxicity and potential to cause cancer, arsenic has been proven to be a very important tool for the treatment of various refractory neoplasms. One of the promising arsenic-containing chemotherapeutic agents in clinical trials is Darinaparsin (dimethylarsinous glutathione, DMAIII(GS)). In order to understand its toxicity and therapeutic efficacy, the metabolism of Darinaparsin in human cancer cells was evaluated. With the aim of detecting all potential intermediates and final products of the biotransformation of Darinaparsin and other arsenicals, an analytical method employing high performance liquid chromatography inductively coupled mass spectrometry (HPLC-ICP-MS) was developed. This method was ...


Conformational Dynamics Associated With Ligand Binding To Vertebrate Hexa-Coordinate Hemoglobins, Luisana Astudillo Mar 2014

Conformational Dynamics Associated With Ligand Binding To Vertebrate Hexa-Coordinate Hemoglobins, Luisana Astudillo

FIU Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Neuroglobin (Ngb) and cytoglobin (Cygb) are two new additions to the globin family, exhibiting heme iron hexa-coordination, a disulfide bond and large internal cavities. These proteins are implicated in cytoprotection under hypoxic-ischemic conditions, but the molecular basis of their cytoprotective function is unclear.

Herein, a photothermal and spectroscopic study of the interactions of diatomic ligands with Ngb, Cygb, myoglobin and hemoglobin is presented. The impact of the disulfide bond in Ngb and Cygb and role of conserved residues in Ngb His64, Val68, Cys55, Cys120 and Tyr44 on conformational dynamics associated with ligand binding/dissociation were investigated. Transient absorption and photoacoustic ...