Bandeira do Brasil

Bandeira do Brasil

Saturday, November 24, 2012

WHERE´S THE OYSTER CAPITAL OF BRAZIL?

Santa Catarina provides almost 80 percent of all oysters produced in Brazil: more than one million dozen per year, approximately two thousand metric tons. It all began in 1987, when aquaculture experts from the Federal University of Santa Catarina (UFSC) recommended an alternative income for technically adept fishermen that would avoid fishing the marine species protected at that time. However, according to Nino Souza, managing director of Cavalo Marinho, the fishermen couldn't deal with the management requirements and the people who cultivate oysters today are doctors, engineers and other experts: They recognized the potential of this segment and invest in the markets around Santa Catarina. "Most fishermen ended up selling the cultivation areas that they received as a donation to grow oysters in the 1980's," explains Nino. From a technical point of view. the UFSC's project was an overwhelming success. The Pacific oyster (Crassostrea gigas) adapted so well, that they dubbed Santa Catarina's capital, Florianópolis, as Brazil's oyster capital.
Oysters have to arrive at the restaurant table alive, which makes their transportation exceptionally problematic. Especially when the 720 km  journey from Brazil´s main production area in the state of Santa Catarina to the main buyer in Sao Paulo is made through a hot country under difficult road conditions.


OYSTER FARMING IN SOUTHERN BRAZIL  

Oysters are cultivated in cages called lantern nets. They get their name from typical Japanese lanterns because they look just like them – long and divided into sections. Each lantern has five sections and contains a total of 25 dozen mature oysters. The boat harvests about 300 dozen oysters. "Production begins with a spat that looks like a grain of sand," explains Nino. "The Federal University of Santa Catarina cultivates the spat. They select oysters directly from the sea, mate them and grow spat from the larvae. The oyster is born with a foot and swims like a small fish until it develops its shell and attaches itself to something. Once the spat develops, it takes about eight months until the oyster reaches the perfect eating size. If it remains in the sea, it continues to grow. The size of a baby is about six centimeters. Average size is reached when it is about eight centimeters. This is the maximum size that restaurants accept. If oysters are left in the sea for longer, they can reach a size of over ten centimeters.






Tuesday, November 20, 2012

RATTLESNAKE POISON TO CURE CANCER

Researchers from  the Butantan Institute  in São Paulo  have taken  a leap forward in skin cancer research.

They are celebrating test results obtained by means of  a toxin which kills  cancerigenous cells. The substance found in the poison of the rattlesnake helped  control the illness in laboratory rats.
Rattlesnakes  are famous for their powerful poison. However,  researchers from the Butantan Institute in São Paulo have discovered that one of the components of the poison can also help cure skin cancer.
The toxin, called crotamin,  is responsible for paralyzing animals bitten by the snake, because
it enters into in cells quickly. Furthermore, in tests performed  with lab rats  researchers have noticed  the crotamin prefers fast-dividing cells, as of the melanoma type, known as skin cancer.
“The melanoma is a fast growing cancer; also,  a very aggressive type – the one which causes quick methastasis.", declares Irina Kerkis, director of the Laboratory of Genetics of the Butantan Institute.
The images on  microscope (see video) show  spots of stronger color  which are the cancerigenous cells where the crotamin diffused into.
In addition, the toxin in the poison of the rattlesnake kills the cancerigenous cells. For the time being, the research is only in its tests phase. The lab rats with skin cancer which underwent  treatment with the toxin for 21 days survived. The ones without treatment  died after some 40 days. Moreover,  the rats under treatment had either a drastic reduction in the size of the tumour or were cured.  
“The crotamin virtually bypasses all issues that appear in the development of a anti-cancerigenous drug ", states Ms. Kerkis.
Results have been so overwhelming  that  researchers have already head-started investigations towards treatment   toxin-based treatments to other more aggressive types of cancer, such as breast and  lung cancers. The crotamin hardly ever causes allergy and does not affect healthy cells of the body.
Such toxin may shortly be synthetically produced, according to researchers, cutting out the need  of rattlesnake poison use.
Another venomous animal also targeted by the researchers from the Butantan Institute is carrapato (tick). From the gland that produces the saliva of the carrapato they have lab-developed  the Amblyomin-x, a protein that kills cancerigenous cells. Research is likewise at test phase  in animals.
video
Source: Globo Videos

Saturday, November 17, 2012

YES, WE HAVE A FOOT IN ANTARCTICA


The Comandante Ferraz Brazilian Antarctic Base (Portuguese: Estação Antártica Comandante Ferraz) is a permanent Antarctic research station named after the Brazilian Navy Commander Luís Antônio de Carvalho Ferraz, who visited Antarctica many times with the British exploration team and managed to convince his government to create a self-guided Brazilian Antarctic Program.
Located in Admiralty Bay, King George Island, near the tip of the Antarctic Peninsula, 130 km from the South American continent, the station began operating on 6 February 1984, brought to Antarctica in modules by the oceanographic ship Barão de Teffé (H-42) and several other Brazilian naval ships. It now houses about 60 people, including researchers, technicians and staff, military and civilians.
The main objective of the base lies on climate change like global warming, the greenhouse effect, ozone depletion and on the raising level of the oceans. The personnel working at the base collect samples of pollutants which often come from overseas. They also carry out research in meteorology, continental and marine geology, oceanography, astrophysics, geomagnetism, and nuclear geophysics.
Work on the Comandante Ferraz Antarctic Base (EACF) will be resumed by the Brazilian government over the next four months – the summer period in the region. And the 31st Antarctica Operation (Operantar) is already at sea, mobilizing 200 researchers and five ships in an initiative from the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (MCTI), the Ministry of Environment (MMA) and the Ministry of Defense. 
According to Rear Admiral Marcos Silva Rodrigues, this is the largest Antarctica Operation yet in terms of logistics and has become even larger due to the accident in February, when the Brazilian base was destroyed. "After the fire, we removed toxic and perishable materials so as to avoid polluting the environment, and we sealed off the Comandante Ferraz Base. Now, after defining this operation, we are boarding all the equipment needed for the three actions of this Operantar, and we will clean the area and reestablish communications," he explained.

Sources: Brazilian Government and Wikipedia

Sunday, November 11, 2012

ST. NICK´S SUMMER HOME IS HERE

During Year End holidays one way to beat the heat (remember: northern hemisphere´s  winter is summer in Brazil) is to go to the mountain town of Penedo, about three hours northwest of Rio. Penedo was settled by Finns led by naturalist Toivo Uuskallio, and locals refer to it as “a cidade do Papai Noel,” or “Santa Claus City.” You’ll find chalet-style architecture, chocolate shops and one attraction billed as St. Nick’s summer home. The town can also be a base for exploring the Parque Nacional do Itatiaia, which contains a Brazilian rain forest.


WHERE TO EAT


BELLA CITTÁ 
Av. das Mangueiras, 1763 – Centro – Penedo – RJ
Telefone: (24) 3351-1926
Site: http://www.bellacitta.visitepenedo.com/

CASA DO FRITZ 
German Cuisine
Avenida das Mangueiras, 518 – Penedo – Itatiaia – RJ.
Telefone: (24) 3351-1751
Site: www.casadofritz.com.br
 PEQUENA SUÉCIA
Rua Toivo Suni, 33 – Penedo – Itatiaia – RJ.
Telefone: (24) 3351-1275
Site: www.pequenasuecia.com.br
SKANDINAVIA
Avenida das Mangueiras, 2631 – Penedo – Itatiaia – RJ.
Telefone: (24) 3351-1529
WEIN STÜBLE – Cozinha alemã
Rua das Velas, 100 – Penedo – Itatiaia – RJ.
Telefone: (24) 3381-7107
Site: www.weinstuble.com
CASA DO CHOCOLATE – DOCERIA
Avenida Casa das Pedras, 10 (fica na entrada de Penedo) – Penedo – Itatiaia – RJ.
Telefone: (24) 3351-1127
FÁBRICA DO CHOCOLATE
Praça Finlândia, s/n – Penedo – Itatiaia – RJ.
WHERE TO STAY
POUSADA DAS ACEROLAS
Rua dos Operários, s/n – Centro (Próximo ao hotel Vilar Formoso) – Penedo – Itatiaia – RJ.
Telefone: (24) 3351-1265
Site: www.pousadadasacerolas.com.br
ARBORETUM 
Estrada da Cachoeira, s/n – Penedo (o ponto de referência é o hotel da Cachoeira) – Itatiaia – RJ.
Telefone: (24) 3351-1728
Site: www.arboretum.com.br
POUSADA FINLÂNDIA 
Avenida das Mangueiras, 2000 – Penedo – Itatiaia – RJ.
Telefone: (24) 3351-1709
Site: www.pousadafinlandia.com.br
VALE DOS DUENDES
Rua Toivo Suni, 130 – Centro (atrás do Shopping Vale dos Duendes) – Penedo – Itatiaia – RJ.
Telefone: (24) 3351-3002
Site: www.aparthotelvaledosduendes.com.br
VILAR FORMOSO 
Rua dos Operários, 270 – Centro – Penedo – Itatiaia – RJ.
Telefone: (24) 3351 – 1071
Site: www.vilarformoso.com.br

Saturday, November 3, 2012

DISTANCES IN BRAZIL ARE JAW-DROPPING, DID YOU KNOW THAT?



Brazil is the fifth country in territorial extension and has an enormous capacity of benefiting from its natural resources. However, when it comes to competing globally with other countries, expectations run against a logistic structure full of serious operational problems.
In the 2012 World Bank survey, that analyzes logistic systems worldwide, Brazil ranked the 45º position. The country was specifically bad in the aspect “customs”, one of the research’s indicators.
The main problem regarding logistics in Brazil is infrastructure. The poor maintenance of roads and lack of railways represent the major issues. Due to the internal market growth, there were a lot of investments since 2008, but they are still insufficient to the country’s demand.
The Brazilian transport network lacks a greater variety of options to the companies. The country counts with 214.000 km of roads (1.600 km of them, unpaved) against 30.000 km of railways and 14.000 km of waterways.
Considering these numbers, it’s understandable that around 60% of the loads transported inside the Brazilian territory are carried in roads, revealing one of the greatest weaknesses of the system. Loads here are transported by roads even along extreme distances involving thousands of kilometers. The cost of road transport is very high in Brazil, especially over long distances, for which we should use other means of transport.
DISTANCES FROM SÃO PAULO CITY TO OTHER LOCATIONS:
São Paulo (SP) – Paranaguá (SP): 442 km (274.64 miles) – 4h54m
São Paulo (SP) – Santos (SP): 72 km (44 miles) - 48m
São Paulo (SP) – Rio de Janeiro (RJ): 429 km (266 miles) – 4h46m
São Paulo (SP) – Natal (RN) – 2.947 km (1831 miles) – 32h44m
São Paulo (SP) – Salvador (BA): 1.962 km (1219 miles) – 21h48m
São Paulo (SP) – Itajai (SC): 617 km (383.3 miles) – 6h51m
São Paulo (SP) – Porto Alegre (RS): 1.109 km (689 miles) – 12h19m
São Paulo (SP) – Recife (PE): 2.660 km (1652 miles) – 29h33m
São Paulo (SP) – Rio Branco (AC): 3.604 km (2239 miles) – 40h02m
São Paulo (SP) – Vitória (ES): 882 km (548 miles) – 9h48m
São Paulo (SP) – Belo Horizonte (MG): 586 km (364 miles) – 6h30m
São Paulo (SP) – Boa Vista (RR): 4.756 km (2955 miles - 52h56m)
São Paulo (SP) – Florianópolis (SC): 705 km (469 miles) - 7h50m
São Paulo (SP) – Ponta Porã (MS): 1.117 km (694 miles) - 12h24m
In this link, you can download a table containing the distances between the main Brazilian cities. You can also check which stretches are unpaved.

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