The seeds in fruits consumed by primates may be chewed and digested, swallowed and defecated intact, or separated from the flesh and spat out. We show by a combination of close field observations and experiments with caged animals, that long-tailed macaques (Macaca fascicularis) have a remarkably low threshold of 3-4 mm for swallowing seeds and also that wild macaques rarely break them. The seeds of 69% of the ripe fruit species eaten are spat out intact or cleaned outside the mouth and dropped. Seed-spitting significantly reduces the swallowed food bulk and may lessen the risk of releasing seed toxins during mastication. However, it requires that even small fruits are processed in the mouth one or a few at a time. We suggest that fruit storage in the cheek pouches of cercopithecine monkeys allows them to spit seeds individually without excessively slowing fruit intake while feeding on patchily distributed fruit. In contrast, Apes and New World monkeys apparently swallow and defecate most ripe seeds in their diet and colobine monkeys break and digest them, detoxifying seed defenses by bacterial fermentation.
A wide variety of skin disorders in children are encountered by doctors practising in tropical countries. While some of them are common and pose little difficulty in their management, a few are uncommon, run a protracted course and cause errors in diagnosis. Two patients--one with cutaneous tuberculosis and the other with chromomycosis--are described and illustrate the importance of early and prompt detection of disease in children.
In a recent epidemiological study of 249 opiate addicts in the State of Penang, Malaysia, the use of benzodiazepines, its temporal relationship to opiate addiction and the reasons for use of benzodiazepines were examined. Just over a half of the opiate addicts indicated use of benzodiazepines in their lifetime. Use of 7 different benzodiazepines was reported, among them flunitrazepam most frequently. A substantial proportion had discontinued the use of benzodiazepines after initial experimentation. Just over a quarter had used them in the last 24 hours. Benzodiazepine use starts on average 3 to 6 years later than heroin use. The most common reason cited for benzodiazepine use was to enhance the feeling of 'high' from the opiates. These findings can be explained, at least partly, by economic factors. Reasons that could be qualified as attempts to autotherapy did not exceed 20%. None of the opiate addicts had reported isolated benzodiazepine use for fun and pleasure. From the time course of use as well as from the reasons given by the addicts, it is evident that benzodiazepines are not primary drugs of abuse. Comparing their figures from Malaysia with figures from Germany and England the authors cannot explain the preferred use of flunitrazepam by Malaysian addicts by the existence of special properties of this substance.
An extract prepared from the tentacle of Catostylus mosaicus was shown to lyse erythrocytes from rat, rabbit and human to a different extent; those from the rat being most susceptible followed by those from rabbit and human. The haemolytic activity was dependent on the concentration of crude extract protein exhibiting a sigmoidal curve. Only 60% of the haemolytic activity was retained after treament with heat and proteolytic enzyme. The extract was devoid of hydrolytic enzymes normally present in venoms except for phospholipase A activity, which resulted in the hydrolysis of membrane phospholipids with concomittant appearance of their lyso-derivatives.
1. Anaesthesia caused marked decreases in the plasma concentrations of triiodothyronine (T3) and thyroxine (T4) and in the body temperature of young fowl. 2. Exogenous T4 or a thyroid hormone secretagogue (somatostatin antiserum), increased endogenous T3 and T4 concentrations and body temperature in conscious birds and prevented the body temperature decline in anaesthetized fowl. 3. These results provide further evidence for a role of T3 and T4 in temperature regulation in birds, particularly during anaesthesia.
1. The intravenous median lethal doses (LD50), protease, phosphodiesterase, alkaline phosphomonoesterase, L-amino acid oxidase, acetylcholinesterase, phospholipase A, 5'-nucleotidase, hyauronidase and anticoagulant activities of fourteen samples of venoms from the four common species of krait (Bungarus caeruleus, Bungarus candidus, Bungarus multicinctus and Bungarus fasciatus) were examined. 2. The results indicate that even though there are individual variations in the biological properties of the krait venoms, interspecific differences in the properties can be used for differentiation of the venoms from the four species of Bungarus. Particularly useful for this purpose are the LD50's and the contents of 5'-nucleotidase and hyaluronidase of the venoms.
In recent years, numerous agents have been recognized as inflammatory mediators. In this review, however, we discuss only those having direct relevance to human inflammatory diseases These mediators are clinically important due to their proinflammatory properties such as vasodilatation, increased vascular permeability, pain and chemotaxis. They may lead to the fifth cardinal sign, loss of function in inflammatory diseases. Agonists and non-specific antagonists are used as pharmacological tools to investigate the inflammatory role of PGs, LTs, PAF, IL-1, histamine, complement, SP, PMN-leukocytes, and kallikrein-kininogen-kinin systems. Unfortunately, no compound is known which concurrently abolishes all actions and interactions of inflammatory mediators. Therefore it would be highly useful to promote efforts in developing selective and competitive antagonists against proinflammatory actions of these chemical mediators. This may help to a better understanding of the pathogenesis of inflammatory reactions, and it may also be useful for the therapy of inflammatory diseases.
A strain of Clostridium bifermentans individualized as serovar malaysia (C.b.m.) according to its specific H antigen is toxic to mosquito and blackfly larvae when given orally. The toxicity occurs in sporulated cells which contain, in addition to spores, proteinic parasporal inclusion bodies and feather-like appendages; the amino acid content of the inclusion bodies is similar to that of Bacillus thuringiensis serovar israelensis (B.t.i.) and B. sphaericus crystals. The toxicity to Anopheles stephensi is as high as that of B.t.i. and the best strains of B. sphaericus. Culex pipiens is somewhat less susceptible, and Aedes aegypti much less. Pure parasporal inclusion bodies, isolated by ultracentrifugation on sucrose gradients, are highly toxic to mosquito larvae. The larvicidal power is destroyed by heating at 80 degrees C or by treatment with 50 mM NaOH. It is preserved by freeze-drying. The innocuity to mice of the sporulated cells is shown by different routes of administration: force-feeding, percutaneous, subcutaneous, intraperitoneal or intravenous injections. The potential for the biological control of mosquito and blackfly larvae is suggested.
Three different ethnic groups from Singapore comprising 79 Chinese, 34 Malays and 23 Indians of Dravidian origin, were investigated for the HindIII RFLP at the DNF15S2 locus. The three populations had very similar allele frequencies and the frequency of rarer(S) allele was significantly (p less than 0.01) lower (0.21) in these ethnic groups compared to that in Caucasians (0.41). The phenotypic distributions were at Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium.
1. The hemorrhagic, procoagulant, anticoagulant, protease, phosphodiesterase, alkaline phosphomonoesterase, L-amino acid oxidase, acetylcholinesterase, arginine ester hydrolase, phospholipase A, 5'-nucleotidase and hyaluronidase activities of 39 samples of venoms from 13 species (15 taxa) of Australian elapids were determined and the Sephadex G-75 gel filtration patterns for some of the venoms were also examined. 2. The results indicate that Australian elapid venoms can be divided into two groups: procoagulant Australian venoms (including N. scutatus, N. ater, O. scutellatus, O. microlepidotus, P. porphyriacus, T. carinatus, H. stephensii and P. textilis) and non-procoagulant Australian venoms (including A. superbus, P. colletti, P. australis, P. guttatus and A. antarcticus). 3. The non-procoagulant Australian venoms exhibited biological properties similar to other elapid venoms, while the procoagulant Australian venoms exhibited some properties characteristic of viperid venoms. 4. The data show that information on venom biological properties can be used for differentiation of many species of Australian elapids. 5. Particularly useful for this purpose are the hyaluronidase, alkaline phosphomonoesterase, acetylcholinesterase, and the procoagulant activities and the Sephadex G-75 gel filtration patterns of the venoms.
1. In vitro studies of non-specific histidine decarboxylase activity was low or absent in control guinea-pigs and unchanged 9 or 27 hr after chlorpromazine (CPZ) injection intraperitoneally. 2. However, specific histidine decarboxylase activity was found in the control tissues and was increased 9 hr but not 27 hr after CPZ injection.
1. Oral administration of [14C]histamine induced the presence of small amounts of [14C]histamine in stomach and ileal tissues of control guinea-pigs. In contrast, much larger amounts were found after 8 h infusion. 2. Similar amounts of [14C]histamine were found in the tissues when [14C]histamine was given by intravenous infusion from 24-30 h after chlorpromazine injection.
1. The edema-inducing activity of 24 venoms from snakes of the subfamilies of Elapinae, Hydrophiini, Crotalinae and Viperinae was determined. 2. All snake venoms tested are very potent edema inducers. The minimum edema doses of the venoms ranged from 0.16 to 3.41 micrograms per mouse paw. 3. The venoms induced a rapid onset edema which peaked within 1 h of injection and declined thereafter; at low dose, however, some venoms induced a rapid onset edema that sustained over a longer duration.
An unusual case of syringomyelia secondary to a cauda equina meningioma involving the conus medullaris is described. The tumour was totally removed with decompression of an adjacent cyst and syrinx resulting in resolution of the symptoms and radiological appearance.
Various alloplastic and autogenous tissues have been used in attempts to restore facial height and reconstruct temporomandibular articulation. A case is presented where an ectodermal rib graft was used to reconstruct the temporomandibular joint after arthroplasty in a young child.
Diet and sugar eating habits, in particular sweet preference levels, are gradually nurtured over time by culturally accepted dietary norms. The dietary habits of Malaysia's three main ethnic groups are distinctively different from each other and expectedly, many studies have discovered significant ethnic variations in caries experience. In order to guide further research work into the causes of these variations, this pilot study was designed to establish whether ethnic variations exist in sweet preference levels. This study found that although the difference in sweet preference between boys and girls in this sample was not statistically significant, the ethnic variation was statistically significant. The implications of this study and suggestions for further research in this field are discussed.
The aim of this postal survey was to assess the utilization, knowledge and attitude concerning sealants among Malaysian dentists. A pretested questionnaire was sent to all dentists (1217) who were on the Dentist Register of Malaysia of 1987. A response rate of 61.1% was obtained. The results indicate that 52.6% of the respondents have used sealants, but of these only 13.6% have used them frequently. The two "knowledge" related questions receiving the most support concerned the suitability of the first permanent molars for sealants and the loss of sealants attributable to problems at the time of application. The two "attitudinal" questions receiving the most support concerned the value of sealants in preventing dental caries and the need for the profession to expand more efforts toward increasing public demand for sealants. Only about 50% of the respondents believed that sealants are cost-effective.
MeSH terms: Attitude of Health Personnel*; Dentists; Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice; Malaysia; Pit and Fissure Sealants*; Surveys and Questionnaires
The spectrum of beta-thalassemia mutations in Malaysia has been determined in 45 beta-thalassemia chromosomes using dot blot hybridization of the polymerase chain reaction amplified DNA and direct DNA sequencing. Eleven different molecular defects, including those previously detected in Chinese, Asian Indians, and American blacks, and a novel frameshift mutation causing beta zero-thalassemia were detected. Since this novel mutation, a T deletion in codon 15 creates a new restriction site for EcoRII enzyme; the mutation could be detected by EcoRII digestion of the appropriate amplified fragment. The results of the present study provide additional information on the molecular heterogeneity of beta-thalassemia in this population. We also demonstrated the nonradioactive detection method of the beta-thalassemia mutation based upon the digoxigenin-labeled oligonucleotide probes.
MeSH terms: Base Sequence; Digoxigenin; DNA Mutational Analysis; Genetic Testing; Humans; Malaysia; Molecular Sequence Data; Pedigree; Polymorphism, Genetic; Thalassemia/ethnology; Thalassemia/genetics*; DNA Probes; Polymerase Chain Reaction
Anthropometric and parasitological data from cross-sectional studies of two groups of primary school children (Group I of Indian origin, 325 boys and 259 girls, age = 7 years; Group II of Malay origin, 284 boys and 335 girls, age = 7-9 years) from two different ecological settings in Peninsular Malaysia were examined for epidemiological evidence of an association between hookworm infection and protein-energy malnutrition. In both ecological groups, significant weight, height and haemoglobin deficits were observed in children with hookworm infection after adjustment for covariables including Ascaris and Trichuris infection intensities and other child and family characteristics. The deficits were related to the intensity of infection based on egg counts. These findings suggest that hookworm may be an important determinant of chronic protein-energy malnutrition, as well as anaemia, in areas where diets are generally inadequate in protein, energy, and iron. Well-controlled intervention studies are needed to confirm these observations.
The in-vitro activity of cefotaxime and cefoperazone were compared using clinically isolated Escherichia coli, Klebsiella spp and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Cefotaxime was found on a weight to weight basis, to be much more active than cefoperazone. All the three species studied show the presence of cefoperazone-resistant population which were sensitive to cefotaxime. The possible mechanisms of resistance to these antibiotics were discussed.