Two new species of diminutive, sympatric, lowland, leaf-litter skinks of the genus Tytthoscincus Linkem, Diesmos Brown from the Sekayu region of Hulu Terengganu, Terengganu State in northeastern Peninsular Malaysia are described on the basis genetic and morphological data. One of the new species, T. monticolus sp. nov., was collected in a hilly riparian area along Sungai (=river) Bubu and is most closely related to an undescribed species from the Tembak Reservoir area. The other, T. keciktuek sp. nov. collected along Sungai Peres, is most closely related to T. perhentianensis Grismer, Wood, Grismer from Pulau (=island) Perhentian Besar. Sympatry and syntopy of multiple, specialized, unrelated, leaf-litter species of Tytthoscincus was previously only known from upland areas and these new species represent the first example of lowland of sympatry. More importantly, however, these endemic species add to a growing body of research and discoveries that continue to underscore the unrealized biodiversity of the riparian systems of Hulu Terengganu and the Sekayu region and their need for protection and continued study.
Okra plant particularly its fruit is highly mucilage which composed of pectin and high content of carbohydrate. Byproducts of okra plant such as leaves and matured fruits will be discarded whenever the young fruits are harvested which eventually leads to environmental pollution. Those byproducts have potential to become plant-based alternative for bovine and pork related gelatin. This study aimed to determine the gel formation of pectin extracted from okra plant byproducts particularly the leaves, pulp (skin without seeds) and seeds. Pectin was extracted using a sequential extraction with the applications of hot buffer (HB) and hot buffer with chelating agents (CH). CH extraction gave the highest pectin yield (>40%) compared to HB and DA. The HB fraction harbored highly purified pectin due to high anhydro uronic acid content and degree of esterification. The highest pectin yield was extracted from seeds with an overall fraction yield of 86%, followed by the leaves (75%) and pulp (71%). The pectin was blended with konjac glucomannan (KG) in 5.0:1.6 ratio to form gel and stored for 16 - 18hr at 4°C ± 1.0. The gel formed using HB extraction was found to have significantly lower (p < 0.05) gel strength than HB with CH extraction. This study concluded that HB and CH pectin extracts derived from okra leaves, pulp and seeds have good potential to become gelling agent.
A detailed procedure for estimating uncertainty according to the Laboratory of Government Chemists/Valid Analytical Measurement (LGC/VAM) protocol for determination of 18 amino acids in gelatin is proposed. The expanded uncertainty was estimated using mainly the method validation data (precision and trueness). Other sources of uncertainties were contributed by components in standard preparation measurements. The method scope covered a single matrix (gelatin) under a wide range of analyte concentrations. The uncertainty of method precision, μ(P) was 0.0237-0.1128pmolμl(-1) in which hydroxyproline and histidine represented the lowest and highest values of uncertainties, respectively. Proline and phenylalanine represented the lowest and highest uncertainties value for method recovery, μ(R) that was estimated within 0.0064-0.0995pmolμl(-1). The uncertainties from other sources, μ(Std) were 0.0325, 0.0428 and 0.0413pmolμl(-1) that were contributed by hydroxyproline, other amino acids and cystine, respectively. Hydroxyproline and phenylalanine represented the lowest and highest values of expanded uncertainty, U(y) that were determined at 0.0949 and 0.2473pmolμl(-1), respectively. The data were accurately defined and fulfill the technical requirements of ISO 17025:2005.
Differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) is developed and used for detection of butter adulteration with lard. Butter has the similar characteristics to lard makes lard a desirable adulterant in butter. DSC provides unique thermal profiling for lard and butter. In the heating thermogram of the mixture, there was one major endothermic peak (peak A) with a smaller shoulder peak embedded in the major peak that gradually smoothed out to the major peak as the lard percent increased. In the cooling thermogram, there were one minor peak (peak B) and two major exothermic peaks, peak C which increased as lard percent increased and peak D which decreased in size as the lard percent increased. From Stepwise Multiple Linear Regression (SMLR) analysis, two independent variables were found to be able to predict lard percent adulteration in butter with R2 (adjusted) of 95.82. The SMLR equation of lard percent adulteration in butter is 293.1 - 11.36 (Te A) - 2.17 (Tr D); where Te A is the endset of peak A and Tr D is the range of thermal transition for peak D. These parameters can serve as a good measurement parameter in detecting lard adulteration in butter. DSC is a very useful means for halal screening technique to enhance the authenticity of Halal process.
A study was carried out to compare the composition and thermal properties of lard (LD) and engkabang fat (EF) - canola oil (CaO) blend interesterified with Candida antartica lipase (C. antartica). A fat blend EF-4 (40% EF in CaO) was prepared and interesterified using C. antartica lipase at 60°C for different time intervals (6 h, 12 h and 24 h) with 200 rpm agitation. The fat blends before and after interesterification were compared to LD with respect to their slip melting points (SMP), fatty acid and triacyglycerol (TAG) compositions, melting, solidification and polymorphic properties. Result showed that the slip melting point (SMP) of the fat blend interesterified for 6 h was the closest to that of LD. The solid fat content (SFC) values of fat blends interesterified for 12 and 24 h were found to become equal to those of LD within the temperature range of 0 to 20°C. In addition, all three interesterified blends had SFC values similar to those of LD within the temperature range of 30-40°C. According to thermal analysis, the transition of the fat blend interesterified for 24 h appearing at -2.39°C was similar to the low melting thermal transition of LD and the transition of the fat blend interesterified for 12 h appearing at 26.25°C was similar to the high melting thermal transition of LD. However, there is no compatibility between LD and all three interesterified blends with regard to polymorphic behaviour.
The purpose of this study was to improve the survival of Bifidobacterium animalis subsp. lactis 10140 during freeze-drying process by microencapsulation, using a special pediatric prebiotics mixture (galactooligosaccharides and fructooligosaccharides). Probiotic microorganisms were encapsulated with a coat combination of prebiotics-calcium-alginate prior to freeze-drying. Both encapsulated and free cells were then freeze-dried in their optimized combinations of skim milk and prebiotics. Response surface methodology (RSM) was used to produce a coating combination as well as drying medium with the highest cell viability during freeze-drying. The optimum encapsulation composition was found to be 2.1 % Na-alginate, 2.9 % prebiotic, and 21.7 % glycerol. Maximum survival predicted by the model was 81.2 %. No significant (p > 0.05) difference between the predicted and experimental values verified the adequacy of final reduced models. The protection ability of encapsulation was then examined over 120 days of storage at 4 and 25 °C and exposure to a sequential model of infantile GIT conditions including both gastric conditions (pH 3.0 and 4.0, 90 min, 37 °C) and intestinal conditions (pH 7.5, 5 h, 37 °C). Significantly improved cell viability showed that microencapsulation of B. lactis 10140 with the prebiotics was successful in producing a stable symbiotic powdery nutraceutical.
The use of Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy coupled with chemometric techniques to differentiate butter from beef fat (BF) was investigated. The spectral bands associated with butter, BF, and their mixtures were scanned, interpreted, and identified by relating them to those spectroscopically representative to pure butter and BF. For quantitative analysis, partial least square (PLS) regression was used to develop a calibration model at the selected fingerprint regions of 1500-1000 cm-1, with the values of coefficient of determination (R2) and root mean square error of calibration (RMSEC) are 0.999 and 0.89% (v/v), respectively. The PLS calibration model was subsequently used for the prediction of independent samples containing butter in the binary mixtures with BF. Using 6 principal components, root mean square error of prediction (RMSEP) is 2.42% (v/v). These results proved that FTIR spectroscopy in combination with multivariate calibration can be used for the detection and quantification of BF in butter formulation for authentication use.
The use of component from Ganoderma lucidum as prebiotic source is interesting as the G. lucidum itself was known for more than a decade in the traditional Chinese medicine. In this work, Ganoderma lucidum crude polysaccharides (GLCP) and Polysaccharide-fraction number 2 (PF-2) were used as carbon sources in the fermentation with Bifidobacterium sp. The results showed the potential of prebiotic effect of the G. lucidum extract in batch-culture fermentation based on increment in the growth of bacteria used (0.4 – 1.5 log10 CFU/mL) after 18h fermentation. Fermentation was further done using faecal materials as bacterial inocula and bacterial growth changes were examined using real-time PCR. The results showed the ability of GLCP and PF-2 to support the growth of Bifidobacterium genus with 0.3 and 0.7 log10 cells/ml increased, respectively. Interestingly, Lactobacillus which is known as beneficial bacterial genus also showed growth increment with 0.7 and 1 log10 cells/ml increased. The competition for carbon sources thus inhibits the growth of potentially harmful genus, Salmonella (0.3 and 0.5 log10 cells/ml) in comparison to the control.
Virgin Coconut Oils (VCO) were prepared from fresh-dry (grated coconut route), chilling and thawing, enzymatic and fermentation method in this study. All of the VCO produced conformed physicochemically to the standards established by the Asian and Pacific Coconut Community (APCC) and Codex Alimentarius Commission. The highest FA (fatty acid) is lauric acid in all of the VCO and ranged from 46.36 – 48.42 %, while the principal TAG (triacylglycerol) is LaLaLa (La: Lauric) with 17.94 – 19.83 % of the total TAG. Tocopherol analysis showed the presence of beta, gamma and delta tocopherols at low levels. In all, the physicochemical, FA and TAG analyses of the VCO extracted from different methods showed some significant differences, while the tocopherol content does not differ significantly among the different types of extraction methods used.
Morinda elliptica Ridley (Rubiaceae) has been used traditionally as a medicine to treat various diseases in Malaysia and southeast Asia. In the present study we investigated the immunomodulatory effects of damnacanthal isolated from the roots of Morinda elliptica. The immunomodulatory effect of this compound was evaluated by using the lymphocyte proliferation assay with mouse thymocytes and human peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC). In addition, the effect of the compound on PBMC cell cycle progression was studied by using flow cytometry. The production of human interleukin-2 and human inteleukin-12 cytokines was also assessed using the enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) technique. The lymphocyte proliferation assay showed that damnacanthal was able to activate mouse thymocytes and PBMC at a low concentration (0.468 microg/mL). Moreover, the production of human interleukin-2 and human interleukin-12 cytokines in the culture supernatant from damnacanthal activated lymphocytes was markedly up-regulated at 24 h and sustained until 72 h with a slight decrease with time. A positive correlation was found between the level of these two cytokines and the MTT-based proliferation assay. Based on the above results, damnacanthal can act as an immunomodulatory agent which may be very useful for maintaining a healthy immune system.
Among the bacterial fermentation end products in the chicken cecum, butyrate is of particular importance because of its nutritional properties for the epithelial cell and pathogen inhibitory effects in the gut. An in vitro experiment, operated with batch bioreactor, was conducted to quantify butyric-producing bacteria in a simulated broiler cecum supplemented with Lactobacillus salivarius ssp. salicinius JCM 1230 and Lactobacillus agilis JCM 1048 during 24 h of incubation. Selected bacterial species were determined by real-time PCR and short-chain fatty acids and lactate concentrations were monitored. The results showed that after 24 h of incubation, Lactobacillus supplementation significantly increased the number of lactobacilli, bifidobacteria and Faecalibacterium prausnitzii in medium containing cecal content and lactobacilli supplementation (Cc + L) compared with the control (Cc). Addition of lactobacilli did not alter Escherichia coli and Clostridium butyricum, whereas it significantly (P < 0.05) reduced Salmonella in treatment Cc + L compared with the Cc treatment. Propionate and butyrate formation were significantly (P < 0.05) increased in treatment Cc + L as compared with the Cc treatment. Lactate was only detected in treatment containing 2 Lactobacillus strains. After 24 h of incubation, acetate concentration significantly (P < 0.05) decreased in all treatments. It was suggested that lactate produced by Lactobacillus in the cecal content improved the growth of butyric producers such as F. prausnitzii, which significantly increased butyrate accumulation. Additionally, the results showed that butyrate and propionate inhibited Salmonella without influencing the E. coli profile.
1. An experiment was conducted to determine the effects of supposedly unpleasant physical treatment on broiler performance, small intestinal development and ameliorating role of probiotics. 2. The following treatments were applied from day one: (1) chicks exposed to normal human contact fed basal diet (control); (2) chicks were exposed to unpleasant physical treatment and fed basal diet (UPT-BD); and (3) chicks were exposed to unpleasant physical treatment and fed basal diet supplemented with Lactobacillus (UPT-BDL). Chicks were exposed to UPT from days 1 to 21. Different segments of gastrointestinal tract were sampled at 14, 28, 35 and 42 d of age. 3. Broilers of UPT-BD had lower feed consumption compared with control group at 7 d of age. Overall, UPT-BDL birds showed higher body weight gain (BWG) and better feed conversion ratio (FCR) over the course of the experiment. 4. Birds of UPT-BD had lower concentrations of lactic, propionic and butyric acids in the caecum as compared with other groups at 14 d of age. Acetic acid concentration was profoundly decreased in both UPT groups compared to the control. 5. Duodenal villus height of UPT-BD broilers showed a slight reduction compared to the control and UPT-BDL birds at 14 d of age. Afterwards until day 42, UPT-BDL birds showed the highest villus height among treatments in different parts of the small intestine. 6. The results suggested that, even though UPT did not have significant inhibitory effects on the development of the small intestine and broiler performance, it negatively affected bacterial metabolic end products in the caecum, which could be ameliorated by the addition of Lactobacillus.
The aim of this study was to determine the changes of short chain fatty acids (SCFAs) in faeces of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) patients compared to healthy subjects. SCFAs such as pyruvic, lactic, formic, acetic, propionic, isobutyric and butyric acids were analyzed by using high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). This study showed that the level of acetic, 162.0 micromol/g wet faeces, butyric, 86.9 micromol/g wet faeces, and propionic acids, 65.6 micromol/g wet faeces, decreased remarkably in IBD faecal samples when compared with that of healthy individuals, 209.7, 176.0, and 93.3 micromol/g wet faeces respectively. On the contrary, lactic and pyruvic acids showed higher levels in faecal samples of IBD than in healthy subjects. In the context of butyric acid level, this study also found that the molar ratio of butyric acid was higher than propionic acid in both faecal samples. This might be due to the high intake of starch from rice among Malaysian population. It was concluded that the level of SCFAs differ remarkably between faecal samples in healthy subjects and that in IBD patients providing evidence that SCFAs more likely play an important role in the pathogenesis of IBD.
Phytates have been considered as a threat in human diet due to its antinutrients behaviour which
known as strong chelators of divalent minerals such as Ca2+, Mg2+, Zn2+ and Fe2+. Phytic acid has a potential for binding positively charged proteins, amino acids, and/or multivalent cations or minerals in foods. The resulting complexes are insoluble, difficult for humans to hydrolyze during digestion, and thus, typically are nutritionally less available for absorption. The reduction of this phytates can be achieved through both enzymatic and nonenzymatic removal. Enzymatic degradation includes addition of either isolated form of wild-type or recombinant exogenous phytate-degrading enzymes microorganisms in the food matrix. Non-enzymatic hydrolysis of phytate occurred in the final food during food processing or physical separation of phytate-rich parts of the plants seed. The application of phytase with respect to breadmaking process, probiotics, animal feed supplement and transgenic crops are emphasised in this paper.
Efflux-mediated resistance has been recognized as an important contributor of antibiotic resistance in bacteria, especially in methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) isolates. This study was carried out to detect and analyze efflux genes (norA and mdeA) and active efflux activity in a collection of Malaysian MRSA and methicillin-sensitive S. aureus (MSSA) clinical isolates. Nineteen isolates including three ATCC S. aureus reference strains were subjected to PCR detection and DNA sequence analysis for norA and mdeA and active efflux detection using modified minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) assay. From the 19 isolates, 18 isolates harboured the mdeA gene while 16 isolates contained norA gene. DNA sequence analysis reveals 98-100% correlation between the PCR product and the published DNA sequences in GenBank. In addition, 16 isolates exhibited active efflux activity using the ethidium bromide (EtBr)-reserpine combination MIC assay. To our knowledge, this is the first report on the detection of efflux genes and active efflux activity amongst Malaysian clinical isolates of MRSA/MSSA. Detection of active efflux activity may explain the previous report on efflux-mediated drug resistance profile amongst the local clinical isolates.
Eighteen Bifidobacterium strains were tested for their susceptibility to a range of antimicrobial agents. All the strains tested, including the reference culture Lactobacillus acidophilus CH2, were susceptible to several groups of antimicrobial agents, they were cephalosporin (cefamandole, cefazolin, cefaperazone, cefoxitin), polypeptide (bacitracin), macrolide (erythromycin), penicillin (amoxicillin), phenicol (chloramphenicol) and beta-lactam (imipenem). Fourteen strains were resistant to more than 10 antibiotics. The reference culture was resistant to only three antibiotics. The results showed that bifidobacteria are resistant to a wide range of antimicrobial agents.