METHODS AND RESULTS: Rice bran, biochar, empty fruit bunches, coconut fibres, compost, top soil and mixed soil were evaluated as media for mass multiplication of T. asperellum, which is effective in controlling plant pathogens. Yielding the most colony forming units (CFU) among the media, coconut fibre was deemed most suitable for promoting sporulation. After 120 days on the medium, T. asperellum B1902 produced 9·053 × 105 CFU per gram coconut fibre; oil palm empty fruit bunches was second highest (7·406 × 105 CFU per gram). In field tests of T. asperellum B1092 against F. oxysporum f. sp lycopersici (causing Fusarium wilt of cherry tomato), B1092 significantly promoted plant growth compared to the control. The efficacy of this formulation resulted in increased growth of roots and shoots tomato plants and total lycopene, sugar, K, N, Ca, P and Mg content after 120 days.
CONCLUSIONS: Trichoderma asperellum B1092 showed great field potential for improving productivity and quality of tomatoes and in controlling Fusarium wilt of cherry tomato.
SIGNIFICANCE AND IMPACT OF THE STUDY: This innovative approach using a cheap agro-waste to control the persistent soil-borne Fusarium pathogen of cherry tomato should increase soil survival rate of Trichoderma and has potential for upscaling in the field for other crops.
METHOD: A randomized controlled trial was conducted recruiting patients from Hospital Melaka, Malaysia. Postoperative TKA patients with good hearing and visual acuity, fully conscious and prescribed with patients controlled analgesia (PCA) were randomized to either intervention or control groups using a sealed envelope. Patients in the intervention group received usual care with additional music therapy during recovery, while patients in the control group received the usual care provided by the hospital. Two factors identified affecting mental well-being were the pain (measured using numerical rating scale) and anxiety (measured using a visual analog scale) at five different minutes' points (0, 10, 20, 30, and 60).
RESULTS: A total of 56 (control: 28, intervention: 28) postoperative TKA patients consented in the study. There was no difference in baseline characteristics between the two groups (p>0.05). Using Mann-Whitney U tests, patients in music therapy group showed significantly lower numerical pain score at 60min (p=0.045) whereas there was no significant difference between the two groups at all time points for anxiety scores (p>0.05). In the intervention group, Friedman tests showed that there was a significant difference in numerical pain (χ2=36.957, df=4, p<0.001) and anxiety score across times (χ2=18.545, p=0.001).
CONCLUSIONS: This study found that pain score decreases over time among patients in the music therapy group while no effect is seen for anxiety. It is suggested that music therapy could not affect postoperative TKA patients' mental well-being. Nonetheless, patients reported better pain score despite the small sample.
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