Mycoplasma imitans (Mim) has been isolated from ducks, geese and partridges, and is closely related to Mycoplasma gallisepticum (Mg). The pathogenicity of Mim for chicks was investigated in single and mixed infections with infectious bronchitis virus (IBV) by giving IBV strain M41 at 1-day-old and Mim 2 days later. Single infections with IBV or Mim were also performed. No clinical signs or gross lesions were seen in chicks infected with Mim or uninfected control chicks, but they were seen in the other two groups. Clinical scores were consistently higher in birds with mixed infections than those infected with IBV alone, and were significantly higher (P < 0.05) between days 7 and 14. More birds developed sinusitis, tracheitis and airsacculitis (with greater severity) in the mixed than the single IBV infections. Mim was recovered more frequently and in greater numbers from the respiratory tract of birds with mixed than single infections. It was recovered from the lower trachea, air sacs and lungs only in mixed infections. Seroconversion to Mim occurred by day 14 in mixed infections, but not until day 21 in single infections. It appears that Mim can act synergistically with IBV in young chickens in a similar manner to Mg, although Mg may act as a primary pathogen under some circumstances.
The clastogenic and mutagenic effects of the insecticide Dimethoate (Cygon-2E), herbicides Atrazine, Simazine (Princep), Dicamba (Banvel D) and Picloram (Tordon) were studied using the Tradescantia-micronucleus (Trad-MCN) and Tradescantia-stamen hair mutation (Trad-SHM) assays. In clone 4430, dimethoate fumes both significantly increased the pink mutation events and reduced the number of stamen hairs per filament with increasing dosages. The pink mutation events were elevated by the liquid treatment with Picloram at 100 ppm concentration. The result of Trad-MCN test on Dimethoate fumes was not significantly different between the control and treated groups. The herbicide Atrazine showed positive effects at 10-50 ppm dose (liquid) and signs of overdose at 100 and 500 ppm concentrations. Simazine was mildly positive in elevating the MCN frequencies in the dose range of 5 to 200 ppm (liquid doses). Both Dicamba and Picloram induced a dosage-related increase in MCN frequencies in the Trad-MCN tests using Tradescantia clone 03. However, in higher dosages (200 ppm or higher), there were signs of overdose, reduction of MCN frequencies and physical damage of the leaves and buds of plant cuttings.
Cross-correlating two surface EMG signals detected at two different locations along the path of flow of action potential enables the measurement of the muscle fiber average conduction velocity in those active motor units monitored by the electrodes. The position of the peak of the cross-correlation function is the time delay between the two signals and hence the velocity may be deduced. The estimated velocity using this technique has been observed previously to depend on the location of the electrodes on the muscle surface. Different locations produced different estimates. In this paper we present a measurement system, analyze its inherent inaccuracies and use it for the purpose of investigating the reliability of measurement of conduction velocity from surface EMG. This system utilizes EMG signals detected at a number of locations on the biceps brachii, when under light tension, to look for any pattern of variations of velocity as a function of location and time. It consists of a multi-electrode unit and a set of eight parallel on-line correlators. The electrode unit and the parallel correlators ensure that these measurements are carried out under the same physical and physiological conditions of the muscle. Further, the same detected signals are used in different measurement configurations to try to understand the reasons behind the observed variations in the estimated velocity. The results obtained seem to suggest that there will always be an unpredictable random component superimposed on the estimated velocity, giving rise to differences between estimates at different locations and differences in estimates with time at the same location. Many factors contribute to this random component, such as the non-homogeneous medium between the muscle fibers and the electrodes, the non-parallel geometry and non-uniform conduction velocity of the fibers, and the physical and physiological conditions of the muscle. While it is not possible to remove this random component completely from the measurement, the user must be aware of its presence and how to reduce its effects.
This paper focuses on the evaluation of the k0 method of instrumental neutron activation analysis in biological materials. The method has been applied in multielement analysis of human hair standard reference materials from IAEA, No. 085, No. 086 and from NIES (National Institute for Environmental Sciences) No. 5. Hair samples from people resident in different parts of Malaysia, in addition to a sample from Japan, were analyzed. In addition, human kidney stones from members of the Malaysian population have been analyzed for minor and trace elements. More than 25 elements have been determined. The samples were irradiated in the rotary rack (Lazy Susan) at the TRIGA Mark II reactor of the Malaysian Institute for Nuclear Technology and Research (MINT). The accuracy of the method was ascertained by analysis of other reference materials, including 1573 tomato leaves and 1572 citrus leaves. In this method the deviation of the 1/E1+ alpha epithermal neutron flux distribution from the 1/E law (P/T ratio) for true coincidence effects of the gamma-ray cascade and the HPGe detector efficiency were determined and corrected for.
To study the process of establishment, and evaluate the outcome of participation, in a self-help support group for people with chronic nonmalignant pain, members of a newly-established, consumer-led group participated in two interviews 5 months apart and a researcher observed group meetings. Participants reported significant benefits from participating in the group. They had a significant increase in functional ability and activity, and reported decreased recourse to health professionals, particularly family physicians. This study indicates that pain support groups can play a valuable role for people in pain, assisting with support and rehabilitation, and meeting needs that health professionals are often not appropriate or able to provide.
Study site: Waikato pain support group, New Zealand
MeSH terms: Adult; Aged; Chronic Disease; Female; Humans; Male; Middle Aged; New Zealand; Self-Help Groups*; Qualitative Research
BACKGROUND: Iron deficiency and its consequent anemia constitute the commonest micronutrient deficiency in the world.
OBJECTIVE: We investigated whether long-term, weekly iron-folate supplements administered at school would improve hemoglobin and ferritin concentrations in adolescent girls, including those with mild-to-moderate anemia and hemoglobin concentrations indicating borderline anemia.
DESIGN: Subjects were 266 girls with hemoglobin concentrations of 80-119.9 g/L (group A) and 358 girls with hemoglobin concentrations of 120-130 g/L (group B) who were otherwise healthy. Two hundred sixty-six girls in group A and 268 girls in group B were randomly assigned to receive either 60 or 120 mg Fe plus 3.5 mg folic acid weekly for 22 wk. Ninety of the girls in group B were randomly assigned to receive only 5 mg folic acid weekly. Capillary hemoglobin and plasma ferritin were measured at baseline and after 12 and 22 wk of supplementation.
RESULTS: By the end of the study, 2% of the girls had dropped out and > 96% had taken > or = 20 of the 22 tablets; side effects were minimal. Mean plasma ferritin increased significantly in all iron-supplemented groups, independently of initial hemoglobin values and iron doses. Ferritin concentrations decreased in the girls supplemented with folic acid only. As expected, hemoglobin responses to iron were higher in group A than in group B and increases were positively correlated with initial plasma ferritin. Hemoglobin failed to respond to folate supplementation if initial plasma ferritin concentrations were low. Mean hemoglobin increased significantly and consistently in relation to the length of treatment.
CONCLUSION: Long-term, weekly iron-folate supplementation was found to be a practical, safe, effective, and inexpensive method for improving iron nutrition in adolescent schoolgirls.
Comment in: Picciano MF. Iron and folate supplementation: an effective intervention in
adolescent females. Am J Clin Nutr. 1999 Jun;69(6):1069-70. PubMed PMID:
Study site: 3 secondary schools, Samarahan district, Sarawak, Malaysia
Isolates of Blastocystis hominis from infected immigrant workers from Indonesia, Bangladesh and infected individuals from Singapore and Malaysia were assessed for growth pattern and degree of resistance to different concentrations of metronidazole. Viability of the cells was assessed using eosin-brillian cresyl blue which stained viable cells green and nonviable cells red. The Bangladeshi and Singaporean isolates were nonviable even at the lowest concentration of 0.01 mg/ml, whereas 40% of the initial inoculum of parasites from the Indonesian isolate at day one were still viable in cultures with 1.0 mg/ml metronidazole. The study shows that isolates of B. hominis of different geographical origin have different levels of resistance to metronidazole. The search for more effective drugs to eliminate th parasite appears inevitable, especially since surviving parasites from metronidazole cultures show greater ability to multiply in subcultures than controls.
MeSH terms: Animals; Anti-Infective Agents/pharmacology*; Bangladesh; Drug Resistance; Drug Evaluation, Preclinical; Emigration and Immigration; Feces/parasitology; Humans; Indonesia; Malaysia; Metronidazole/pharmacology*; Singapore; Time Factors; Colony Count, Microbial; Blastocystis Infections/drug therapy; Blastocystis Infections/parasitology*; Blastocystis hominis/drug effects*; Blastocystis hominis/growth & development
Two experiments were conducted to evaluate the effect of formaldehyde vaporization of a hatcher on the tracheal epithelium of chick embryos, and on the production performance and behaviour of commercial broiler chicks. In experiment 1, chick embryos were exposed to 23.5 ppm of formaldehyde vapour during the last 3 days of incubation. Tracheal samples were taken at 0, 6, 30 and 54 h after exposure to formaldehyde and examined by scanning electron microscopy for pathological changes. Observable lesions included excessive accumulation of mucus, matted cilia, loss of cilia and sloughing of the epithelium. The lesions were more severe in chicks exposed for 54 h as compared to those exposed for 6 or 30 h. In experiment 2, 60 chicks that had been exposed to formaldehyde vapour as above and 60 control chicks were used to investigate the effect of formaldehyde fumigation on production performance and behaviour. Formaldehyde vaporization resulted in higher weekly (days 0-6 and 21-27) and total (days 0-41) feed intake and poorer weekly (days 0-6, 7-13, 21-27 and 28-34) and overall (days 0-41) feed conversion ratios. Body weight, mortality and behaviour (eating, drinking, sitting and standing activities) were not affected by formaldehyde fumigation.
Clinical diagnosis of congenital hypothyroidism (CH) is difficult at birth without neonatal screening. In line with the priorities of the national health services in Malaysia towards preventive medicine, early diagnosis and treatment of CH is emphasised. We conducted a pilot study at Kuala Lumpur's Maternity Hospital between April 1995 and November 1995 to estimate the incidence of CH and also evaluated the problems associated with large-scale neonatal screening using a commercial TSH kit on cord bloodspots.
A 28-year-old lady suffering from systemic lupus erythomatosus (SLE) with diffuse proliferative glomerulonephritis (DPGN) and who was on oral cyclophosphamide and prednisolone presented with left lower limb 'cellulitis'. The 'cellulitis' of the left lower limb failed to respond to usual antibiotics which prompted evaluation of the clinical diagnosis. The diagnosis is made based on the presence of granulomas, multinucleated giant cells and acid fast bacilli on the skin biopsy.
The anxiolytic effect of Eurycoma longifolia Jack in mice was examined. Fractions of E. longifolia Jack extract produced a significant increase in the number of squares crossed (controls= 118.2 +/- 10.2 squares), but significantly decreased both the immobility (controls = 39.4+/- 4.0 sec) and fecal pellets (controls= 12.3 +/-2.1 fecal pellets) when compared with control mice in the open-field test; they significantly increased the number of entries (controls=6.7+/-0.5 entries) and time spent (controls=42.9+/-0.1 sec) in the open arms, but decreased both the number of entries (controls= 13.2+/-0.7 entries) and time spent (controls= 193.4+/-0.7 sec) when compared with the control mice in the closed arms of the elevated plus-maze test. Furthermore, fractions of E. longifolia Jack extract decreased the fighting episodes significantly (controls= 18.0+/-0.4 fighting episodes) when compared with control mice. In addition, these results were found to be consistent with anxiolytic effect produced by diazepam. Hence, this study supports the medicinal use of this plant for anxiety therapy.
In vitro and in vivo studies revealed that Malaysian medicinal plants, Piper sarmentosum, Andrographis paniculata and Tinospora crispa produced considerable antimalarial effects. Chloroform extract in vitro did show better effect than the methanol extract. The chloroform extract showed complete parasite growth inhibition as low as 0.05 mg/ml drug dose within 24 h incubation period (Andrographis paniculata) as compared to methanol extract of drug dose of 2.5 mg/ml but under incubation time of 48 h of the same plant spesies. In vivo activity of Andrographis paniculata also demonstrated higher antimalarial effect than other two plant species.
During March 1999, health officials in Malaysia and Singapore, in collaboration with Australian researchers and CDC, investigated reports of febrile encephalitic and respiratory illnesses among workers who had exposure to pigs. A previously unrecognized paramyxovirus (formerly known as Hendra-like virus), now called Nipah virus, was implicated by laboratory testing in many of these cases. Febrile encephalitis continues to be reported in Malaysia but has decreased coincident with mass culling of pigs in outbreak areas. No new cases of febrile illness associated with Nipah virus infection have been identified in Singapore since March 19, 1999, when abattoirs were closed. This report summarizes interim findings from ongoing epidemiologic and laboratory investigations in Malaysia and Singapore.
Iodine deficiency endemia is defined by the goitre prevalence and the median urinary iodine concentration in a population. Lack of local thyroid volume reference data may bring many health workers to use the European-based WHO/International Council for Control of Iodine Deficiency Disorders (ICCIDD)-recommended reference for the assessment of goitre prevalence in children in different developing countries. The present study was conducted in non-iodine-deficient areas in Malaysia to obtain local children's normative thyroid volume reference data, and to compare their usefulness with those of the WHO/ICCIDD-recommended reference for the assessment of iodine-deficiency disorders (IDD) in Malaysia.
MeSH terms: Age Factors; Anthropometry; Body Surface Area; Child; Female; Goiter/epidemiology; Goiter/pathology; Health Surveys; Humans; Iodine/deficiency*; Iodine/urine; Malaysia; Male; Reference Values; Sex Factors; Thyroid Gland/pathology*; Thyroid Gland/ultrasonography
The binding characteristics of the relaxin receptor in rat atria, uterus and cortex were studied using a [33P]-labelled human gene 2 relaxin (B33) and quantitative receptor autoradiography. The binding kinetics of [33P]-human gene 2 relaxin (B33) were investigated in slide-mounted rat atrial sections. The binding achieved equilibrium after 60 min incubation at room temperature (23+/-1 degrees C) and dissociated slowly. The association and dissociation rate constants were 4.31+/-0.34x10(8) M(-1) x min(-1) and 1.55+/-0.38x10(-3) min(-1) respectively. Thus, the kinetic dissociation constant was 3.46+/-0.59 pM. Binding was saturable to a single population of non-interacting sites throughout atria, in uterine myometrium and the 5th layer of cerebral cortex. The binding affinities (pK(D)) of [33P]-human gene 2 relaxin (B33) were 8.92+/-0.09 in atrial myocardium and 8.79+/-0.04 in cerebral cortex of male rats, and 8.79+/-0.10 in uterine myometrium. Receptor densities in the cerebral cortex and atria were higher than in uterine myometrium, indicating that relaxin also has important roles in non-reproductive tissues. In male rats, treatment with 17beta-oestradiol (20 microg in 0.1 ml sesame oil s.c., 18-24 h) significantly decreased the density of relaxin receptors in atria and cerebral cortex. Identical treatment in female rats had no significant effect in atria and cerebral cortex, but it significantly increased the density of relaxin receptors in uterine myometrium. Relaxin binding was competitively displaced by porcine and rat native relaxins. Porcine native relaxin binds to the relaxin receptor in male rat atria (8.90+/-0.02), and cerebral cortex (8.90+/-0.03) and uterine myometrium (8.89+/-0.03) with affinities not significantly different from human gene 2 (B33) relaxin. Nevertheless, rat relaxin binds to the receptors with affinities (8.35+/-0.09 in atria, 8.22+/-0.07 in cerebral cortex and 8.48+/-0.06 in uterine myometrium) significantly less than human gene 2 (B33) and porcine relaxins. Quantitative receptor autoradiography is the method of choice for measurement of affinities and densities of relaxin receptor in atria, uterine myometrium and cerebral cortex. High densities were found in all these tissues. 17beta-oestradiol treatment produced complex effects where it increased the densities of relaxin receptors in uterus but decreased those in atria and cerebral cortex of the male rats, and had no effect on the atria and cerebral cortex of the female rats.