The release of wastewater from textile dyeing industrial sectors is a huge concern with regard to pollution as the treatment of these waters is truly a challenging process. Hence, this study investigates the triazo bond Direct Blue 71 (DB71) dye decolorization and degradation dye by a mixed bacterial culture in the deficiency source of carbon and nitrogen. The metagenomics analysis found that the microbial community consists of a major bacterial group of Acinetobacter (30%), Comamonas (11%), Aeromonadaceae (10%), Pseudomonas (10%), Flavobacterium (8%), Porphyromonadaceae (6%), and Enterobacteriaceae (4%). The richest phylum includes Proteobacteria (78.61%), followed by Bacteroidetes (14.48%) and Firmicutes (3.08%). The decolorization process optimization was effectively done by using response surface methodology (RSM) and artificial neural network (ANN). The experimental variables of dye concentration, yeast extract, and pH show a significant effect on DB71 dye decolorization percentage. Over a comparative scale, the ANN model has higher prediction and accuracy in the fitness compared to the RSM model proven by approximated R2 and AAD values. The results acquired signify an efficient decolorization of DB71 dye by a mixed bacterial culture.
Gestational diabetes (hyperglycaemia) is an elevated blood sugar level diagnosed during the period of pregnancy and affects the baby's health. Hyperglycaemia has been found within the gestational weeks between 24 and 28, and the foetus has also the possibility of getting out prior to this test frame; it causes excessive birth weight, early birth, low-blood sugar level, respiratory distress syndrome, and type-2 diabetes to the mother. It creates a mandatory situation to identify the hyperglycaemia at least during the pregnancy weeks from 18 to 20. Further, a continuous monitoring of the level of glucose is necessary for the proper delivery. In this work, a method is introduced for glucose detection at 0.06 mg/mL, assisted by gold nanorod (GNR)-conjugated glucose oxidase (GOx) on interdigitated electrode sensor. In the absence of GNR, GOx shows the limit of glucose detection to be 0.25 mg/mL. Moreover, with GOx-GNR the reactions of all the glucose concentrations have recorded higher levels of the current from the baseline. With the specificity analysis, it was found that the glucose only reacts with GOx-GNR and discriminates other sugars efficiently. This method of detection is useful to diagnose and continuously monitor the glucose level during the pregnancy period.
Methanolic extract of Clinacanthus nutans Lindau leaves (MECN) has been reported to exert antinociceptive activity. The present study aimed to elucidate the possible antinociceptive mechanisms of a lipid-soluble fraction of MECN, which was obtained after sequential extraction in petroleum ether. The petroleum ether fraction of C. nutans (PECN), administered orally to mice, was (i) subjected to capsaicin-, glutamate-, phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate-, bradykinin-induced nociception model; (ii) prechallenged (intraperitoneal (i.p.)) with 0.15 mg/kg yohimbine, 1 mg/kg pindolol, 3 mg/kg caffeine, 0.2 mg/kg haloperidol, or 10 mg/kg atropine, which were the respective antagonist of α2-adrenergic, β-adrenergic, adenosinergic, dopaminergic, or muscarinic receptors; and (iii) prechallenged (i.p.) with 10 mg/kg glibenclamide, 0.04 mg/kg apamin, 0.02 mg/kg charybdotoxin, or 4 mg/kg tetraethylammonium chloride, which were the respective inhibitor of ATP sensitive-, small conductance Ca2+-activated-, large conductance Ca2+-activated-, or nonselective voltage-activated-K+ channel. Results obtained demonstrated that PECN (100, 250, and 500 mg/kg) significantly (P<0.05) inhibited all models of nociception described earlier. The antinociceptive activity of 500 mg/kg PECN was significantly (P<0.05) attenuated when prechallenged with all antagonists or K+ channel blockers. However, only pretreatment with apamin and charybdotoxin caused full inhibition of PECN-induced antinociception. The rest of the K+ channel blockers and all antagonists caused only partial inhibition of PECN antinociception, respectively. Analyses on PECN's phytoconstituents revealed the presence of antinociceptive-bearing bioactive compounds of volatile (i.e., derivatives of γ-tocopherol, α-tocopherol, and lupeol) and nonvolatile (i.e., cinnamic acid) nature. In conclusion, PECN exerts a non-opioid-mediated antinociceptive activity involving mainly activation of adenosinergic and cholinergic receptors or small- and large-conductance Ca2+-activated-K+ channels.
Chilli (Capsicum annum L.) plant is a high economic value vegetable in Malaysia, cultivated in soilless culture containers. In soilless culture, the adoption of small container sizes to optimize the volume of the growing substrate could potentially reduce the production cost, but will lead to a reduction of plant growth and yield. By understanding the physiological mechanism of the growth reduction, several potential measures could be adopted to improve yield under restricted root conditions. The mechanism of growth reduction of plants subjected to root restriction remains unclear. This study was conducted to determine the physiological mechanism of growth reduction of root-restricted chilli plants grown in polyvinyl-chloride (PVC) column of two different volumes, 2392 cm3(root-restricted) and 9570 cm3(control) in soilless culture. Root restriction affected plant growth, physiological process, and yield of chilli plants. Root restriction reduced the photosynthesis rate and photochemical activity of PSII, and increased relative chlorophyll content. Limited root growth in root restriction caused an accumulation of high levels of sucrose in the stem and suggested a transition of the stem as a major sink organ for photoassimilate. Growth reduction in root restriction was not related to limited carbohydrate production, but due to the low sink demand from the roots. Reduction of the total yield per plant about, 23% in root restriction was concomitant, with a slightly increased harvest index which reflected an increased photoassimilate partitioning to the fruit production and suggested more efficient fruits production in the given small plant size of root restriction.
This study presents the effect of carbon to nitrogen ratio (C/N) (mol/mol) on the cell growth and poly(3-hydroxybutyrate-co-3-hydroxyvalerate) accumulation by Comamonas sp. EB172 in 2 L fermenters using volatile fatty acids (VFA) as the carbon source. This VFA was supplemented with ammonium sulphate and yeast extract in the feeding solution to achieve C/N (mol/mol) 5, 15, 25, and 34.4, respectively. By extrapolating the C/N and the source of nitrogen, the properties of the polymers can be regulated. The number average molecular weight (M n ) of P(3HB-co-3HV) copolymer reached the highest at 838 × 10(3) Da with polydispersity index (PDI) value of 1.8, when the culture broth was supplemented with yeast extract (C/N 34.4). Tensile strength and Young's modulus of the copolymer containing 6-8 mol% 3HV were in the ranges of 13-14.4 MPa and 0.26-0.34 GPa, respectively, comparable to those of polyethylene (PE). Thus, Comamonas sp. EB172 has shown promising bacterial isolates producing polyhydroxyalkanoates from renewable carbon materials.
The Labisia pumila (LP) is a traditional plant that is locally known as Kacip Fatimah, Selusuh Fatimah, or Pokok Ringgang by the Malaysian indigenous people. It is believed to facilitate their childbirth, treating their postchild birth and menstrual irregularities. The water extract of LP has shown to contain bioactive compounds such as flavonoids, ascorbic acid, β-carotene, anthocyanin, and phenolic acid, which contribute extensive antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, and antifungal. The LP ethanolic extract exhibits significant estrogenic effects on human endomentrial adenocarcinoma cell in estrogen-free basal medium and promoting an increase in secretion of alkaline phosphate. Water based has been used for many generations, and studies had reported that it could displace in binding the antibodies and increase the estradiol production making it similar to esterone and estradiol hormone. LP extract poses a potential and beneficial aspect in medical and cosmeceutical applications. This is mainly due to its phytoestrogen properties of the LP. However, there is a specific functionality in the application of LP extract, due to specific functional group in phytoconstituent of LP. Apart from that, the extraction solvent is important in preparing the LP extract as it poses some significant and mild side effects towards consuming the LP extracts. The current situation of women reproductive disease such as postmenopausal syndrome and polycystic ovary syndrome is increasing. Thus, it is important to find ways in alternative treatment for women reproductive disease that is less costly and low side effects. In conclusion, these studies proven that LP has the potential to be an alternative way in treating female reproductive related diseases such as in postmenopausal and polysystic ovarian syndrome women.
A cross-sectional study was carried out to determine the arsenic (As) and cadmium (Cd) concentrations in blood, urine, and drinking water as well as the health implications on 100 residents in an urban and a rural community. Results showed the blood As, urinary Cd, DNA damage, and water As and Cs were significantly (P < 0.001) higher in the rural community. Findings showed significant (P < 0.005) correlations between blood As and DNA damage with household income, years of residence, and total glasses of daily water consumption among the rural residents. The urinary NAG concentrations, years of residence, milk powder intake (glass/week), and seafood intake (per week) were significantly correlated (P < 0.005) with urinary Cd concentrations among respondents. In addition, urinary Cd level significantly influenced the urinary NAG concentrations (P < 0.001). The rural respondents experienced significantly higher lymphocyte DNA damage and blood As influenced by their years of residence and water consumption. The Cd in drinking water also resulted in the rural respondents having significantly higher urinary NAG which had a significant relationship with urinary Cd.
The effectiveness of Okra gum in sustaining the release of propranolol hydrochloride in a tablet was studied. Okra gum was extracted from the pods of Hibiscus esculentus using acetone as a drying agent. Dried Okra gum was made into powder form and its physical and chemical characteristics such as solubility, pH, moisture content, viscosity, morphology study using SEM, infrared study using FTIR, crystallinity study using XRD, and thermal study using DSC and TGA were carried out. The powder was used in the preparation of tablet using granulation and compression methods. Propranolol hydrochloride was used as a model drug and the activity of Okra gum as a binder was compared by preparing tablets using a synthetic and a semisynthetic binder which are hydroxylmethylpropyl cellulose (HPMC) and sodium alginate, respectively. Evaluation of drug release kinetics that was attained from dissolution studies showed that Okra gum retarded the release up to 24 hours and exhibited the longest release as compared to HPMC and sodium alginate. The tensile and crushing strength of tablets was also evaluated by conducting hardness and friability tests. Okra gum was observed to produce tablets with the highest hardness value and lowest friability. Hence, Okra gum was testified as an effective adjuvant to produce favourable sustained release tablets with strong tensile and crushing strength.
Despite Euphorbia hirta L. ethnomedicinal benefits, very few studies have described the potential toxicity. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the in vivo toxicity of methanolic extracts of E. hirta. The acute and subchronic oral toxicity of E. hirta was evaluated in Sprague Dawley rats. The extract at a single dose of 5,000 mg/kg did not produce treatment related signs of toxicity or mortality in any of the animals tested during the 14-day observation period. Therefore, the LD 50 of this plant was estimated to be more than 5,000 mg/kg. In the repeated dose 90-day oral toxicity study, the administration of 50 mg/kg, 250 mg/kg, and 1,000 mg/kg/day of E. hirta extract per body weight revealed no significant difference (P > 0.05) in food and water consumptions, body weight change, haematological and biochemical parameters, relative organ weights, and gross findings compared to the control group. Macropathology and histopathology examinations of all organs including the liver did not reveal morphological alteration. Analyses of these results with the information of signs, behaviour, and health monitoring could lead to the conclusion that the long-term oral administration of E. hirta extract for 90 days does not cause sub-chronic toxicity.
The aim of the present study was to evaluate the anti-inflammatory activities of aqueous extract of Bixa orellana (AEBO) leaves and its possible mechanisms in animal models. The anti-inflammatory activity of the extract was evaluated using serotonin-induced rat paw edema, increased peritoneal vascular permeability, and leukocyte infiltrations in an air-pouch model. Nitric oxide (NO), indicated by the sum of nitrites and nitrates, and vascular growth endothelial growth factor (VEGF) were measured in paw tissues of rats to determine their involvement in the regulation of increased permeability. Pretreatments with AEBO (50 and 150 mg kg⁻¹) prior to serotonin inductions resulted in maximum inhibitions of 56.2% of paw volume, 45.7% of Evans blue dye leakage in the peritoneal vascular permeability model, and 83.9% of leukocyte infiltration in the air-pouch model. 57.2% maximum inhibition of NO and 27% of VEGF formations in rats' paws were observed with AEBO at the dose of 150 mg kg⁻¹. Pharmacological screening of the extract showed significant (P < 0.05) anti-inflammatory activity, indicated by the suppressions of increased vascular permeability and leukocyte infiltration. The inhibitions of these inflammatory events are probably mediated via inhibition of NO and VEGF formation and release.
Amphidiploid species in the Brassicaceae family, such as Brassica napus, are more tolerant to environmental stress than their diploid ancestors.A relatively salt tolerant B. napus line, N119, identified in our previous study, was used. N119 maintained lower Na(+) content, and Na(+)/K(+) and Na(+)/Ca(2+) ratios in the leaves than a susceptible line. The transcriptome profiles of both the leaves and the roots 1 h and 12 h after stress were investigated. De novo assembly of individual transcriptome followed by sequence clustering yielded 161,537 nonredundant sequences. A total of 14,719 transcripts were differentially expressed in either organs at either time points. GO and KO enrichment analyses indicated that the same 49 GO terms and seven KO terms were, respectively, overrepresented in upregulated transcripts in both organs at 1 h after stress. Certain overrepresented GO term of genes upregulated at 1 h after stress in the leaves became overrepresented in genes downregulated at 12 h. A total of 582 transcription factors and 438 transporter genes were differentially regulated in both organs in response to salt shock. The transcriptome depicting gene network in the leaves and the roots regulated by salt shock provides valuable information on salt resistance genes for future application to crop improvement.
N-Acetylneuraminic acid (Neu5Ac) is a biomarker of cardiometabolic diseases. In the present study, we tested the hypothesis that dietary Neu5Ac may improve cardiometabolic indices. A high fat diet (HFD) + Neu5Ac (50 or 400 mg/kg BW/day) was fed to rats and compared with HFD + simvastatin (10 mg/kg BW/day) or HFD alone for 12 weeks. Weights and serum biochemicals (lipid profile, oral glucose tolerance test, leptin, adiponectin, and insulin) were measured, and mRNA levels of insulin signaling genes were determined. The results indicated that low and high doses of sialic acid (SA) improved metabolic indices, although only the oral glucose tolerance test, serum triglycerides, leptin, and adiponectin were significantly better than those in the HFD and HFD + simvastatin groups (P < 0.05). Furthermore, the results showed that only high-dose SA significantly affected the transcription of hepatic and adipose tissue insulin signaling genes. The data suggested that SA prevented HFD-induced insulin resistance in rats after 12 weeks of administration through nontranscriptionally mediated biochemical changes that may have differentially sialylated glycoprotein structures at a low dose. At higher doses, SA induced transcriptional regulation of insulin signaling genes. These effects suggest that low and high doses of SA may produce similar metabolic outcomes in relation to insulin sensitivity through multiple mechanisms. These findings are worth studying further.
In the biomedical field, there is growing interest in using human stem cell-derived neurons as in vitro models for pharmacological and toxicological screening of bioactive compounds extracted from natural products. Lignosus rhinocerus (Tiger Milk Mushroom) is used by indigenous communities in Malaysia as a traditional medicine to treat various diseases. The sclerotium of L. rhinocerus has been reported to have medicinal properties, including various bioactivities such as neuritogenic, anti-inflammatory, and anticancer effects. This study aims to investigate the neuroprotective activities of L. rhinocerus sclerotial extracts. Human embryonic stem cell (hESC)-derived neural lineages exposed to the synthetic glucocorticoid, dexamethasone (DEX), were used as the in vitro models. Excess glucocorticoids have been shown to adversely affect fetal brain development and impair differentiation of neural progenitor cells. Screening of different L. rhinocerus sclerotial extracts and DEX on the hESC-derived neural lineages was conducted using cell viability and neurite outgrowth assays. The neuroprotective effects of L. rhinocerus sclerotial extracts against DEX were further evaluated using apoptosis assays and Western blot analysis. Hot aqueous and methanol extracts of L. rhinocerus sclerotium promoted neurite outgrowth of hESC-derived neural stem cells (NSCs) with negligible cytotoxicity. Treatment with DEX decreased viability of NSCs by inducing apoptosis. Coincubation of L. rhinocerus methanol extract with DEX attenuated the DEX-induced apoptosis and reduction in phospho-Akt (pAkt) level in NSCs. These results suggest the involvement of Akt signaling in the neuroprotection of L. rhinocerus methanol extract against DEX-induced apoptosis in NSCs. Methanol extract of L. rhinocerus sclerotium exhibited potential neuroprotective activities against DEX-induced toxicity in hESC-derived NSCs. This study thus validates the use of human stem cell-derived neural lineages as potential in vitro models for screening of natural products with neuroprotective properties.
Dengue virus infection is a common tropical disease which often occurs without being detected. These asymptomatic cases provide information in relation to the manifestation of immunological aspects. In this study, we developed an ELISA method to compare neutralizing effects of dengue prM and E antibodies between dengue patients and their asymptomatic household members. Recombinant D2 premembrane (prM) was constructed, cloned, and tested for antigenicity. The recombinant protein was purified and tested with controls by using an indirect ELISA method. Positive dengue serum samples with their asymptomatic pair were then carried out onto the developed ELISA. In addition, commercially available recombinant envelope (E) protein was used to develop an ELISA which was tested with the same set of serum samples in the prM ELISA. Asymptomatic individuals showed preexisting heterotypic neutralizing antibodies. The recombinant prM was antigenically reactive in the developed ELISA. Dengue patients had higher prM and E antibodies compared to their household members. Our study highlights the neutralizing antibodies levels with respect to dengue prM and E between dengue patients and asymptomatic individuals.
INTRODUCTION: Our study aims to determine the prevalence of nicotine dependence and investigate the effect of nicotine dependence on psychopathology among schizophrenia patients.
METHODS: A cross-sectional study was carried out in an outpatient psychiatric clinic at a general hospital in Malaysia. 180 recruited subjects were administered the Malay version of Mini International Neuropsychiatric Interview (MINI), the Positive and Negative Symptom Scale (PANSS), and the Malay version of Fagerstrom Test for Nicotine Dependence (FTND-M) questionnaires.
RESULTS: The prevalence of nicotine dependence among the subjects was 38.1% (n = 69) and they were mainly composed of male gender, Malay ethnicity, being treated with atypical antipsychotics, and taking other illicit drugs or alcohol. Subjects with severe nicotine dependence scored less in the negative subscale of PANSS compared with the nonsmokers (P = 0.011). On performing the hierarchy multiple regressions, dependence status still significantly predicted negative scores after adjusting the confounders (t = -2.87, P = 0.005).
CONCLUSION: The rate of nicotine use disorder among schizophrenia patients in this study is higher than that of the general population in Malaysia. The significant association between nicotine dependence and negative psychopathology symptoms will help the healthcare practitioners in their management of nicotine dependence among schizophrenia patients.
Study site: outpatient psychiatric clinic in a general hospital
Mung bean has been traditionally used to alleviate heat stress. This effect may be contributed by the presence of flavonoids and γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA). On the other hand, fermentation and germination have been practised to enhance the nutritional and antioxidant properties of certain food products. The main focus of current study was to compare the antistress effect of none-process, fermented and germinated mung bean extracts. Acute and chronic restraint stresses were observed to promote the elevation of serum biochemical markers including cholesterol, triglyceride, total protein, liver enzymes, and glucose. Chronic cold restraint stress was observed to increase the adrenal gland weight, brain 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT), and malondialdehyde (MDA) level while reducing brain antioxidant enzyme level. However, these parameters were found reverted in mice treated with diazepam, high concentration of fermented mung bean and high concentration of germinated mung bean. Moreover, enhanced level of antioxidant on the chronic stress mice was observed in fermented and germinated mung bean treated groups. In comparison between germinated and fermented mung bean, fermented mung bean always showed better antistress and antioxidant effects throughout this study.
The most common form of malignant renal neoplasms is renal cell carcinoma (RCC), which is classified into several different subtypes based on the histomorphological features. However, overlaps in these characteristics may present difficulties in the accurate diagnosis of these subtypes, which have different clinical outcomes. Genomic and molecular studies have revealed unique genetic aberrations in each subtype. Knowledge of these genetic changes in hereditary and sporadic renal neoplasms has given an insight into the various proteins and signalling pathways involved in tumour formation and progression. In this review, the genetic aberrations characteristic to each renal neoplasm subtype are evaluated along with the associated protein products and affected pathways. The potential applications of these genetic aberrations and proteins as diagnostic tools, prognostic markers, or therapeutic targets are also assessed.
The present study evaluated the antioxidant activity and potential toxicity of 50% methanolic extract of Orthosiphon stamineus (Lamiaceae) leaves (MEOS) after acute and subchronic administration in rats. Superoxide radical scavenging, hydroxyl radical scavenging, and ferrous ion chelating methods were used to evaluate the antioxidant properties of the extract. In acute toxicity study, single dose of MEOS, 5000 mg/kg, was administered to rats by oral gavage, and the treated rats were monitored for 14 days. While in the subchronic toxicity study, MEOS was administered orally, at doses of 1250, 2500, and 5000 mg/kg/day for 28 days. From the results, MEOS showed good superoxide radical scavenging, hydroxyl radical scavenging, ferrous ion chelating, and antilipid peroxidation activities. There was no mortality detected or any signs of toxicity in acute and subchronic toxicity studies. Furthermore, there was no significant difference in bodyweight, relative organ weight, and haematological and biochemical parameters between both male and female treated rats in any doses tested. No abnormality of internal organs was observed between treatment and control groups. The oral lethal dose determined was more than 5000 mg/kg and the no-observed-adverse-effect level (NOAEL) of MEOS for both male and female rats is considered to be 5000 mg/kg per day.
In this study, a novel LC-MS/MS method was designed using a simple extraction procedure that was scientifically developed to capture the most relevant bisphenol A (BPA) analogues (BPB, BPF, BPS, and BPAF) and parabens (propylparaben, ethylparaben, butylparaben, and methylparaben) in human plasma. The LC-MS/MS method was validated using US FDA guidelines, and all validation requirements were satisfactory. This is the method that allows for the detection of plasma bisphenols and parabens in one run and is also the fastest BPA analogue and paraben detection technique for human plasma. The method was used to analyze samples from 150 healthy volunteers from Malaysia who enrolled in the study. No BPB was detected in any of the volunteers; however, 99.3% were positive for BPF. Only 24% and 10.7% of volunteers were positive for BPAF and BPS, respectively. A high percentage of volunteers were negative for propylparaben, ethylparaben, butylparaben, and methylparaben (56%, 68%, 86.7%, and 83.3%, respectively). These results suggest that persons in Malaysia are exposed to different BPA analogues and parabens, from both the daily use of products (cosmetic and plastic products) and the environment.
Little is known on the genetic relatedness and potential dissemination of particular enterococcal clones in Malaysia. We studied the antibiotic susceptibility profiles of Enterococcus faecium and Enterococcus faecalis and subjected them to pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) and multilocus sequence typing (MLST). E. faecium and E. faecalis displayed 27 and 30 pulsotypes, respectively, and 10 representative E. faecium and E. faecalis isolates (five each) yielded few different sequence types (STs): ST17 (2 isolates), ST78, ST203, and ST601 for E. faecium, and ST6, ST16, ST28, ST179, and ST399 for E. faecalis. Resistance to tazobactam-piperacillin and ampicillin amongst E. faecium isolates was highly observed as compared to E. faecalis isolates. All of the isolates were sensitive to vancomycin and teicoplanin. The presence of epidemic and nosocomial strains of selected E. faecium STs: 17, 78, and 203 and E. faecalis ST6 as well as high rates of resistance to multiple antibiotics amongst E. faecium isolates is of a particular concern.