The ghost crab, Ocypode quadrata, is found on sandy beaches from the United States to Southern Brazil. Because there is still little information about the metabolism and reproduction of O. quadrata on the southern coast of Brazil, the objectives of this study were to (i) evaluate the effect of seasonal variations on the carbohydrate, lipid, and protein metabolism of O. quadrata at Rondinha Beach, a beach with high anthropogenic activity, and to compare it with data from Siriú Beach, which has less human activity; and (ii) describe the effect of seasonal variations on the histological characteristics of male and female gonads, in order to assess the reproductive capacity of the crabs. The gonads of male crabs showed no significant variations in the gonadosomatic index (GSI) and glycogen levels; however, histological analysis of the testes revealed that they are mature in the summer. In females, the GSI and glycogen values are higher in summer, concomitantly with the presence of mature oocytes. These results suggest that the reproductive peak of O. quadrata occurs in summer. The seasonal analysis of the biochemical parameters, as well as comparison with Siriú Beach, demonstrated that the ghost crabs of Rondinha Beach have a different pattern of metabolism than those of Siriú. This difference may be a consequence of differences in the environmental conditions as well as in the anthropogenic pressures, such as vehicle traffic and the increase in human population at the beach in summer.
Two bioactivity-based screening methods for antibiotic residue analysis (FAST Antimicrobial Screening Test and PremiTest) were compared, in terms of sensitivity, with a new in-house developed tube test assay using Escherichia coli. Tests were performed using antibiotic standards, spiked samples and real incurred samples. The minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) for several antibiotics was established and compared with maximum residue levels (MRLs) in samples. The results of all evaluated tests are compared with liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry multi-residue screening tests to compare parameters such as sample preparation, cost, time of analysis and confidence in results. For all tests, values of half the maximum residue limit (0.5 × MRL) were considered as a satisfactory target for a screening method. The potential and limitations of each method are discussed to indicate more rational and effective strategies for high-throughput residue monitoring and surveillance programmes. It was concluded that bioactivity-based screening methods are a useful tool, but the best compromise between minimum performance limits, cost and selectivity must be taken into account. For laboratories equipped with mass spectrometry, multi-class screening methods provide more specific responses with high sensitivity.
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