Lowiaceae, a family of the Zingiberales, comprise 11 species in the single genus Orchidantha. Here we present the first report on the pollination of Lowiaceae and describe a new system of dung-beetle pollination from Sarawak, Borneo. Orchidantha inouei has a zygomorphic flower located just above the ground. Observations revealed that the plant is visited frequently and is pollinated by scarabaeid dung beetles, mainly members of the genus Onthophagus. All four species of Onthophagus collected on O. inouei have also been caught using traps baited with dung or carrion in Borneo. Onthophagus was presumably attracted to the dung-like odor of the flower. Pollination of O. inouei is different from other examples of beetle pollination in that its flower provides neither reward nor protected space. Dung beetles are excellent at following a particular dung scent. Orchidantha is the only genus that includes species lacking floral nectar. It is interesting that this deception pollination using dung beetles was found in Zingiberales, in which all known species have mutual and specialized relationships with their long-distance, but costly, pollinators-bees, birds, and bats.
Pollination ecology of an emergent tree species, Shorea (section Mutica) parvifolia (Dipterocarpaceae), was studied using the canopy observation system in a lowland dipterocarp forest in Sarawak, Malaysia, during a general flowering period in 1996. Although the species has been reported to be pollinated by thrips in Peninsular Malaysia, our observations of flower visitors and pollination experiments indicated that beetles (Chrysomelidae and Curculionidae, Coleoptera) contributed to pollination of S. parvifolia in Sarawak. Beetles accounted for 74% of the flower visitors collected by net-sweeping, and 30% of the beetles carried pollen, while thrips accounted for 16% of the visitors, and 12% of the thrips carried pollen. The apical parts of the petals and pollen served as a reward for the beetles. Thrips stayed inside the flower almost continuously after arrival, and movements among flowers were rare. Fruit set was significantly increased by introduction of beetles to bagged flowers, but not by introduction of thrips. Hand-pollination experiments and comparison of fruit set in untreated, bagged, and open flowers suggested that S. parvifolia was mainly outbreeding.
A variety of betel/areca nut/tobacco habits have been reviewed and categorized because of their possible causal association with oral cancer and various oral precancerous lesions and conditions, and on account of their widespread occurrence in different parts of the world. At a recent workshop in Kuala Lumpur it was recommended that "quid" be defined as "a substance, or mixture of substances, placed in the mouth or chewed and remaining in contact with the mucosa, usually containing one or both of the two basic ingredients, tobacco and/or areca nut, in raw or any manufactured or processed form." Clear delineations on contents of the quid (areca nut quid, tobacco quid, and tobacco and areca nut quid) are recommended as absolute criteria with finer subdivisions to be added if necessary. The betel quid refers to any quid wrapped in betel leaf and is therefore a specific variety of quid. The workshop proposed that quid-related lesions should be categorized conceptually into two categories: first, those that are diffusely outlined and second, those localized at the site where a quid is regularly placed. Additional or expanded criteria and guidelines were proposed to define, describe or identify lesions such as chewer's mucosa, areca nut chewer's lesion, oral submucous fibrosis and other quid-related lesions. A new clinical entity, betel-quid lichenoid lesion, was also proposed to describe an oral lichen planus-like lesion associated with the betel quid habit.
The uniqueness of anatomical structures and their variations provides the basis for forensic identification of unknown deceased persons. Similar to fingerprints, each frontal sinus is so distinctive and unique that the chances of two individuals having the same morphology of the frontal sinuses is extremely remote. Radiographs, especially the occipitomental view commonly used in the assessment of paranasal pathology, provide excellent records of these sinuses. The case illustrated here is an application of the frontal sinus identification of a victim in a mass disaster.
Rice tungro bacilliform virus (RTBV) is a plant pararetrovirus and a member of the Caulimoviridae family and closely related to viruses in the Badnavirus genus. The coat protein of RTBV is part of the large polyprotein encoded by open reading frame 3 (ORF3). ORF3 of an RTBV isolate from Malaysia was sequenced (accession no. AF076470) and compared with published sequences for the region that encodes the coat protein or proteins. Molecular mass of virion proteins was determined by mass spectrometry (matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization-TOF) performed on purified virus particles from three RTBV isolates from Malaysia. The N- and C-terminal amino acid sequences of the coat protein were deduced from the mass spectral analysis, leading to the conclusion that purified virions contain a single coat protein of 37 kDa. The location of the coat protein domain in ORF3 was reinforced as a result of immunodetection reactions using antibodies raised against six different segments of ORF3 using Western immunoblots after SDS-PAGE and isoelectrofocusing of proteins purified from RTBV particles. These studies demonstrate that RTBV coat protein is released from the polyprotein as a single coat protein of 37 kDa.
Ninety-two strains of lactic acid bacteria (LAB) were isolated from a Malaysian food ingredient, chili bo, stored for up to 25 days at 28 degreesC with no benzoic acid (product A) or with 7,000 mg of benzoic acid kg-1 (product B). The strains were divided into eight groups by traditional phenotypic tests. A total of 43 strains were selected for comparison of their sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE) whole-cell protein patterns with a SDS-PAGE database of LAB. Isolates from product A were identified as Lactobacillus plantarum, Lactobacillus fermentum, Lactobacillus farciminis, Pediococcus acidilactici, Enterococcus faecalis, and Weissella confusa. Five strains belonging to clusters which could not be allocated to existing species by SDS-PAGE were further identified by 16S rRNA sequence comparison. One strain was distantly related to the Lactobacillus casei/Pediococcus group. Two strains were related to Weissella at the genus or species level. Two other strains did not belong to any previously described 16S rRNA group of LAB and occupied an intermediate position between the L. casei/Pediococcus group and the Weissella group and species of Carnobacterium. The latter two strains belong to the cluster of LAB that predominated in product B. The incidence of new species and subspecies of LAB in chili bo indicate the high probability of isolation of new LAB from certain Southeast Asian foods. None of the isolates exhibited bacteriocin activity against L. plantarum ATCC 14917 and LMG 17682.
In 1988, the World Health Assembly resolved to eradicate poliomyelitis globally by 2000. A plan of action for polio eradication in the Western Pacific Region (WPR) by 1995 was adopted in 1990. The plan was based on routine and supplemental vaccination activities with oral poliovirus vaccine (OPV) and acute flaccid paralysis (AFP) surveillance in the eight countries where polio was endemic (Cambodia, China, Laos, Malaysia, Mongolia, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, and Vietnam). Regionwide, the number of reported polio cases decreased from approximately 6000 in 1990 to zero in 1998. This report describes the extensive efforts to eliminate the last chains of poliovirus transmission in the Mekong River area.
A total of 20 isolates of Blastocystis were characterized using a single set of polymerase chain reaction (PCR) primers. The amplification product revealed five types of pattern. All four isolates from Singapore yielded PCR products quite different from those of the local isolates. However, most of the local isolates showed a major product at either 280 or 500 bp, or both. We also suspected that the amplification product detected at 280 bp might be an indicator of the pathogenicity of this parasite. One isolate (M12) obtained from a monkey showed patterns similar to those of human isolates (10203 and KP1) and probably belongs to the same strain. The results indicate that the intraspecific or interstrain variations in these 20 Blastocystis isolates belong to 5 different patterns. The differences among isolates of the same strain revealed by the presence or absence of certain amplification products showed further intrastrain variations in this parasite.
The shedding pattern of the protozoan parasite, Blastocystis hominis, is investigated in man and in experimental animal infections. The shedding pattern of the vacuolar and cystic forms of Blastocystis hominis in infected individuals have been shown in the present study to be irregular. The study shows that there is marked fluctuation in the shedding of the parasite from day to day, varying from as high as 17 to 0 per x40 microscopic field. The cystic stages when estimated in 8 Blastocystis-infected individuals ranged from as high as 7.4x10(5) cysts per gram of stool to 0. The shedding of cystic and vacuolar forms observed over a period of 20 days in experimentally-infected Wistar rats were not only shown to be irregular but the amount varied from host to host. The study has important diagnostic implications in that the stool samples must be collected more than once from patients showing clinical signs and symptoms to eliminate the cause of it to Blastocystis. The study also shows that there are asymptomatic individuals who pass a large amount of cysts as such individuals should be treated to prevent transmission to others.
Over 30 nuclei have been identified in the reticular formation of rats, but only a small number of distinct reticular nuclei have been recognized in frogs. We used immunohistochemistry, retrograde tracing, and cell morphology to identify nuclei within the brainstem of Rana pipiens. FluoroGold was injected into the spinal cord, and, in the same frogs, antibodies to enkephalin, substance P, somatostatin, and serotonin were localized in adjacent sections. We identified many previously unrecognized reticular nuclei. The rhombencephalic reticular formation contained reticularis (r.) dorsalis; r. ventralis, pars alpha and pars beta; r. magnocellularis; r. parvocellularis; r. gigantocellularis; r. paragigantocellularis lateralis and dorsalis; r. pontis caudalis, pars alpha and pars beta; nucleus visceralis secundarius; r. pontis oralis, pars medialis and pars lateralis; raphe obscurus; raphe pallidus; raphe magnus; and raphe pontis. The mesencephalic reticular formation contained locus coeruleus-subcoeruleus, r. cuneiformis, r. subcuneiformis, raphe dorsalis-raphe centralis superior, and raphe linearis. Thus, the reticular formation of frog, which is an anamniote, is organized complexly and is similar to the reticular formation in amniotes. Because many of these nuclei may be homologous to reticular nuclei in mammals, we used mammalian terminology for frog reticular nuclei.
In both African and Asian colonies until the late 19th century, colonial medicine operated pragmatically to meet the medical needs first of colonial officers and troops, immigrant settlers, and laborers responsible for economic development, then of indigenous populations when their ill health threatened the well-being of the expatriate population. Since the turn of the century, however, the consequences of colonial expansion and development for indigenous people's health had become increasingly apparent, and disease control and public health programs were expanded in this light. These programs increased government surveillance of populations at both community and household levels. As a consequence, colonial states extended institutional oversight and induced dependency through public health measures. Drawing on my own work on colonial Malaya, I illustrate developments in public health and their links to the moral logic of colonialism and its complementarity to the political economy.
MeSH terms: Africa; Asia; Humans; Malaysia; Politics; Public Health/history*; Tropical Medicine/history*; Colonialism/history*; Internationality; History, 19th Century; History, 20th Century
Stool specimens of 104 primary schoolchildren (mean+/-SD age = 8.2+/-0.3 years) were examined for helminth eggs and for occult blood to investigate the possibility that trichuriasis causes occult intestinal bleeding in the absence of the overt Trichuris dysentery syndrome. A commercially available guaiac test was used to detect fecal occult blood. Sixty-one children had Trichuris infection, 11 of whom had heavy infections (> 10,000 eggs per gram of feces [epg]), and 53 had Ascaris infections. No hookworm infection was detected. Baseline screening yielded only one weakly positive occult blood test result in a child with a light (800 epg) Trichuris infection. Serial stool occult blood testing on the 11 subjects with heavy trichuriasis and 8 uninfected controls yielded a single weakly positive result in the control group. The results provide no evidence that trichuriasis predisposes to significant occult gastrointestinal bleeding in children in the absence of the dysenteric syndrome.
The aim of the present study was to determine the cost-efficiency of different duodenal ulcer disease treatment practices in Malaysia. Six Malaysian gastroenterologists met to discuss the direct costs related to Helicobacter pylori (HP) eradication treatment. Five treatment strategies were compared: (i) histamine H2 receptor antagonists (H2RA), acid suppression therapy for 6 weeks followed by maintenance therapy as needed; (ii) bismuth triple + proton pump inhibitor (PPI), bismuth (120 mg, q.i.d.), metronidazole (400 mg; t.i.d.), tetracycline (500 mg, q.i.d.) for 7 days and PPI, b.i.d., for 7 days; (iii) OAC, omeprazole (20 mg, b.i.d.), amoxycillin (1000 mg, b.i.d.) and clarithromycin (500 mg, b.i.d.) for 7 days; (iv) OMC, omeprazole (20mg, b.i.d.), metronidazole (400mg, b.i.d.) and clarithromycin (500 mg, b.i.d.) for 7 days; and (v) OAM, omeprazole (20 mg, b.i.d.), amoxycillin (1000 mg, b.i.d.) and metronidazole (400 mg, b.i.d.) for 7 days. A decision tree model was created to determine which therapy would be the most cost-effective. The model considered eradication rates, resistance to anti-microbial agents, compliance and cost implications of treatment regimens, physician visits and ulcer recurrences during a 1 year time period assumption. The H2RA maintenance therapy was the most expensive treatment at Malaysian Ringgit (MR) 2335, followed by bismuth triple therapy (MR 1839), OMC (MR 1786), OAM (MR 1775) and OAC, being the most cost-effective therapy, at MR 1679. In conclusion, HP eradication therapy is superior to H2RA maintenance therapy in the treatment of duodenal ulcer disease. Of the HP eradication regimens, OAC is the most cost-effective.
The proximate composition including mineral and vitamin contents of 16 fruits and 46 vegetables (leaves, fruits, palm hearts and shoots) of indigenous origin in Sarawak are provided. Fruits like dabai (Canarium odontophyllum), kembayau (Dacryodes rostrata f. cuspidata), durian nyekak (Durio kutejensis) and durian kuning (Durio graveolens) are very nutritious with high values for energy, protein and potassium. Among the vegetables, the protein content of letup (Passiflora foetida), kepayang (Pangium edule) and tubu (Pycnarrhena tumetacta) is high, ranging from 6 to 7%. The range of nutrients among foods of indigenous origin are generally comparable with those of many cultivated species except for vitamin C, which is lower. Teh Kampung (Leucosyke capitellata) leaves are particularly high in magnesium (626 mg/100 g). Some of the indigenous vegetables contain antinutritional factors. Kepayang has very high levels of hydrogen cyanide (1834 µg/g on dry basis) but this poison can be completely evaporated by boiling. Indigenous fruits and vegetables which are pesticide residue free are important food sources for rural populations. Nutritious indigenous fruits and vegetables have the potential to be promoted for wider use, domestication and commercialization.