Fourth instars larvae of freshwater midge Chironomus javanus (Diptera, Chironomidae) were exposed for a 4-day period in laboratory conditions to a range of copper (Cu), cadmium (Cd), zinc (Zn), lead (Pb), nickel (Ni), iron (Fe), aluminium (Al) and manganese (Mn) concentrations. Mortality was assessed and median lethal concentrations (LC(50)) were calculated. LC(50) increased with the decrease in mean exposure times, for all metals. LC(50)s for 96 hours for Cu, Cd, Zn, Pb, Ni, Fe, Al and Mn were 0.17, 0.06, 5.57, 0.72, 5.32, 0.62, 1.43 and 5.27 mg/L, respectively. Metals bioconcentration in C. javanus increases with exposure to increasing concentrations and Cd was the most toxic to C. javanus, followed by Cu, Fe, Pb, Al, Mn, Zn and Ni (Cd > Cu > Fe > Pb > Al > Mn > Zn > Ni). Comparison of LC(50) values for metals for this species with those for other freshwater midges reveals that C. javanus is equally or more sensitive to metals than most other tested dipteran.
Emergency Medicine and Disaster Medicine are two specialties which are similar in the multidisciplinary involvement during the acute phase of the disaster. Recently, there was an increase in the number of disasters in the world but not many physicians are familiar with the principles for dealing with such situations, the unique organizational demands, coordination and the urgent need for medical assistance and relief. This case report delineates our experiences at a tsunami disaster area and the approach to setting up a medical relief team in the affected area. A medical reconnaissance team comprising of an emergency doctor from Hospital Universiti Sains Malaysia (H.U.S.M) and two MERCY Malaysia members was assembled. The team flew to Colombo on day 5 after the tsunami with medical supplies and related materials. The mission started from December 31(st) 2004 until January 8(th) 2005. Our surveillance area covered the Southern and Eastern Province with a total distance of 1700 km along the coast. The strategies employed during this medical reconnaissance included risk analysis, devising a resources matrix, developing lines of communication and rapport with other relief teams, Sri Lankan government agencies, and local and international non-government organizations. As a result, our team was able to set up a medical relief camp and distribute the relief items to the tsunami victims. In conclusion, the Disaster Emergency Medical Assistant Team (DEMAT) from H.U.S.M and MERCY Malaysia were able to set up and provide medical relief with our limited resources to a large scale disaster situation.
Myiasis occurs when living tissues of mammals are invaded by eggs or larvae of flies, mainly from the order of Diptera. Most of the previousty reported cases are in the tropics and they were usually associated with inadequate personal hygiene, sometimes with poor manual dexterity. This report describes two cases of oral myiasis in cerebral palsy patients in Seremban General Hospital, Malaysia. This article also discusses the therapeutic property of maggots and highlights the importance of oral health care in the special needs patients.
Two performance (efficacy and attractiveness) comparisons of neonicotinoid baits QuickBayt® (imidacloprid) and Agita® (thiamethoxam) against filth flies were conducted under field conditions to determine suitability for use outdoors. The first experiment compared bait performance and the second compared effects of different applications on QuickBayt® performance. Applications compared were: (i) scattered in petri dish (SPD); (ii) wet-down in petri dish (WPD); (iii) scattered on cardboard (SCB) and (iv) painted on cardboards (PCB). Efficacy and attractiveness were assessed based on knockdown percentage (KD%) and number of flies feeding on baits, respectively. The KD% of QuickBayt® (34% ± 3.0%) was not significantly higher than Agita® (29% ± 1.3%) (t-test, P>0.05). Agita® (101 ± 5.7 flies) was significantly more attractive to flies than QuickBayt® (76 ± 4.8 flies) and the sugar solution (49 ± 7.2) (one-way ANOVA, P<0.05). The PCB and SCB applications were significantly more attractive to filth flies than WPD and SPD (One-way ANOVA, P<0.05), however differences in KD% were not significantly different (One-way ANOVA, P>0.05). The two baits provided the same level of efficacy in a wide-open area against filth flies of various species. QuickBayt® was more versatile; efficacy was not significantly affected by different applications. Surface area and moisture affects attractiveness of the bait.
This study was carried out in an oil palm plantation in Bandar Baharu, Kedah using monkey carcasses and focuses in documenting the decomposition and dipteran colonization sequences in 50 days. This is the first study of Diptera associated with the exploitation of carcasses conducted in the north of peninsular Malaysia during the dry and wet seasons thereat. During the process of decomposition in both seasons, five phases of decay were recognized namely fresh, bloated, active decay, advance decay and dry remain. In this decomposition study, biomass loss of carcass occurred rapidly during the fresh to active decay stage due to the colonization and feeding activity of the Diptera larvae. The duration of the fresh and bloated stages of decay were the same in wet and dry seasons but later stages of decay were markedly shorter during the wet season. Twenty one species of adult Diptera were identified colonizing carcasses in the study period. Among the flies from the family Calliphoridae, Chrysomya megacephala Fabricius and Chrysomya nigripes Aubertin were recognized as the earliest arrivals on the first day of exposure. Adult Ch. nigripes was abundant for approximately two weeks after placement of the carcasses. By comparing the percentages of adults collected during the study period, the calliphorids abundance in percentages in wet season was 50.83%, but in dry season, the abundance was only about 35.2%. In contrast, the percentage of Sphaeroceridae in wet season was only 3.33%, but in the dry season, the abundance was 20.8%. Dipteran in family Phoridae, Piophilidae, Sepsidae, Drosophilidae and Dolichopodidae colonized the carcasses for a long period of time and were categorized as long term colonizers.
A study was carried out to determine the diversity and enumerate the fauna species related to five pitcher plant species at a selected area in Bukit Setiam Forest, Tatau, Bintulu, Sarawak, Malaysia. At the end of the study, six insect orders together with nematodes and Araneae were detected with different existence abundances and diversity. From the 901 total fauna trapped, 58.82% belonged to the order Hymenoptera, mainly of the ant species, followed by Nematodes (21.64%), Diptera (15.87%), Coleoptera (1.66%), Hemiptera (0.89%), Blattaria (0.44%) and finally, Lepidoptera (0.33%) and Araneae (0.33%). Significant differences (p<0.05) in the composition of insect trapped in pitcher plants were observed for the order Hymenoptera, Diptera, Lepidoptera, Hemiptera and even Nematodes. Meanwhile, no significant difference was observed for Coleoptera, Blattaria and Araneae. There is a strong relationship between fauna and Nepenthes pitcher either as a prey, predator, a mutualistic relationship or parasites or also for a habitat to live or to reproduce.
In Penang, Malaysia, the Oriental and Afrotropical Megaselia curtineura (Brues) and the Oriental and Japanese Megaselia spiracularis Schmitz are reported from human corpses, these being the first reports of these species in such forensic cases.
Fannia pusio (Wiedemann) (Diptera: Fanniidae) is newly recorded from Malaysia. This record is based on 1male symbol 1female symbol from Sarawak, east Malaysia and 1male symbol 2female symbol from Selangor, peninsular Malaysia. It is included in the pusio group of Fannia wherein are included Fannia femoralis (Stein), Fannia howardi Malloch, Fannia trimaculata (Stein), Fannia leucosticta (Meigen) and Fannia punctiventris Malloch. The male of Fannia pusio is differentiated from other members of the group by the following features: hind femur with a swelling bearing a number of setae that are usually curled at tip; squamae creamy; tergite 1+2 broadly grey dusted at sides.
Under normal circumstances, insects such as blow flies will oviposit and larvae will colonize a carcass as soon as possible. However, insect colonization on a carcass may be delayed due to the effects of wrapping, shallow burial, addition of lime derivatives to mitigate scavenging and odor, or extreme weather. The impacts of delayed insect colonization on carcass decomposition and its subsequent effect on soil chemistry profiles have not been examined to date. The objectives of this study were to determine soil chemistry dynamics associated with porcine carcasses experiencing delayed insect colonization for 7-day or 14-day. Soil chemistry profiles such as ammonium-N (NH4 -N), orthophosphate-P (PO4 -P), and dissolved organic carbon (DOC) were significantly different among treatments: insect inclusion (immediate access of blow fly colonization on porcine carcasses), 7-day insect exclusion and 14-day insect exclusion (blow fly access was delayed up to 7-day and 14-day). Furthermore, significant differences of soil chemical profiles were detected between days of decomposition and soil regions. Soil moisture, NH4 -N, PO4 -P, and DOC were significantly higher when insects were excluded from the porcine carcass suggesting loss of tissue from larval feeding reduced the mass of nutrients entering the soil. This study provides useful information for forensic science in cases where insect colonization is delayed for a period of time postmortem and soil chemistry in the cadaver decomposition island is considered for estimating postmortem interval.
It is expected that in 2050, there will be more than 20% of senior citizens aged over 60 years worldwide. Such alarming statistics require immediate attention to improve the health of the aging population. Since aging is closely related to the loss of antioxidant defense mechanisms, this situation eventually leads to numerous health problems, including fertility reduction. Furthermore, plant extracts have been used in traditional medicine as potent antioxidant sources. Although many experiments had reported the impact of various bioactive compounds on aging or fertility, there is a lack of review papers that combine both subjects. In this review, we have collected and discussed various bioactive compounds from 26 different plant species known to affect both longevity and fertility. These compounds, including phenolics and terpenes, are mostly involved in the antioxidant defense mechanisms of diverse organisms such as rats, mites, fruit flies, roundworms, and even roosters. A human clinical trial should be considered in the future to measure the effects of these bioactive compounds on human health and longevity. Ultimately, these plant-derived compounds could be developed into health supplements or potential medical drugs to ensure a healthy aging population.
Forensic entomological specimens collected from human decedents during crime scene investigations in Malaysia in the past 6 years (2005-2010) are reviewed. A total of 80 cases were recorded and 93 specimens were collected. From these specimens, 10 species of cyclorrphagic flies were identified, consisting of Chrysomya rufifacies (Macquart) -38 specimens (40.86%), Chrysomya megacephala (Fabricius) -36 specimens (38.70%), Chrysomya villeneuvi (Patton) -2 specimens (2.15%), Chrysomya nigripes (Aubertin) -2 specimens (2.15%), Chrysomya pinguis (Walker) -1 specimen (1.08%), Hermetia illucens (Linnaeus) -1 specimen (1.08%), Hemipyrellia liguriens (Wiedemann) -5 specimens (5.37%), Synthesiomyia nudiseta (Wulp) -1 specimen (1.08%), Megaselia scalaris (Loew)-1 specimen (1.08%) and Sarcophaga ruficornis (Fabricius) -4 specimens (4.30%). In two specimens (2.15%), the maggots were not identifiable. Ch. megacephala and Ch. rufifacies were the commonest species found in human decedents from three different ecological habitats. S. nudiseta is an uncommon species found only on human cadavers from indoors. A total of 75 cases (93.75%) had a single fly infestation and 5 cases (6.25%) had double fly infestation. In conclusion, although large numbers of fly species were found on human decedents, the predominant species are still those of Chrysomya.
Forensic entomology applies knowledge about insects associated with decedent in crime scene investigation. It is possible to calculate a minimum postmortem interval (PMI) by determining the age and species of the oldest blow fly larvae feeding on decedent. This study was conducted in Malaysia to identify maggot specimens collected during crime scene investigations. The usefulness of the molecular and morphological approach in species identifications was evaluated in 10 morphologically identified blow fly larvae sampled from 10 different crime scenes in Malaysia. The molecular identification method involved the sequencing of a total length of 2.2 kilo base pairs encompassing the 'barcode' fragments of the mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase I (COI), cytochrome oxidase II (COII) and t-RNA leucine genes. Phylogenetic analyses confirmed the presence of Chrysomya megacephala, Chrysomya rufifacies and Chrysomya nigripes. In addition, one unidentified blow fly species was found based on phylogenetic tree analysis.
Four species of synanthropic flies were trapped in downtown Kuala Lumpur: Chrysomya megacephala, Chrysomya rufifacies, Musca domestica, and Musca sorbens. Burkholderia pseudomallei, the organism causing melioidosis, was the dominant bacteria isolated from Chrysomya megacephala. Klebsiella oxytoca, commonly associated with nosocomial infections, was commonly isolated from Chrysomya megacephala, Musca domestica, and Musca sorbens. Aeromonas hydrophila, the bacteria causing gastroenteritis, was predominantly isolated from Chrysomya megacephala and also from Musca domestica and Musca sorbens. A total of 18 bacterial species was isolated from the synanthropic flies trapped. Burkholderia pseudomallei had been reported for the first time.
Entomologi forensik dapat ditakrifkan sebagai pengetahuan mengenai serangga yang berkait rapat dengan bangkai terutamanya manusia, dengan tujuan ia dapat digunakan dalam penentuan jangka masa pascakematian. Jangka masa pascakematian (PMI) dapat ditentukan dengan mengambil kira spesies serangga dan peringkat perkembangan setiap spesies tersebut. Oleh kerana penentuan jenis spesies memerlukan serangga berkembang ke peringkat dewasa dan ini mengambil masa yang lama, maka objektif utama kajian ini adalah untuk mengoptimumkan suhu dan kelembapan terhadap perkembangan serangga dengan menggunakan larva Chrysomya megacephala sebagai spesimen. Larva C. megacephala dipindahkan ke dalam bekas khas, kemudiannya dimasukkan ke dalam pengeram yang telah dilaraskan suhunya kepada 27, 30, 33, 36 dan 39°C. Selepas menentukan suhu optimum perkembangan larva, aras kelembapan relatif ditentukan. Ini dilakukan dengan menentukan tempoh masa yang diperlukan untuk mengembangkan telur C. megacephala hingga ke peringkat dewasa. Untuk itu aras kelembapan relatif dalam pengeram tersebut dilaraskan kepada 54.2, 57.6, 76.0 dan 67.5% (kawalan). Peringkat perkembangan C. megacephala direkodkan. Hasil yang diperolehi menunjukkan perkembangan C. megacephala lebih pantas pada suhu 33oC berbanding suhu-suhu lain yang digunakan. Aras kelembapan relatif yang optimum juga telah dikenal pasti iaitu pada 76.0%. Dengan menggunakan keduadua data didapati keseluruhan peringkat perkembangan C. megacephala iaitu daripada peringkat telur hingga dewasa dapat dipendekkan daripada 8 hingga 9 hari kepada 5 hari.
This preliminary study was carried out in a palm oil plantation in Tanjung Sepat, Selangor in 17 May 2007 by using pig (Sus scrofa) as a carcass model in forensic entomological research. A 3 month old pig (8.5 kg) that died of pneumonio was placed in the field to observe the decomposition stages and the fauna succession of forensically important flies. Observation was made for two weeks; two visits per day and all climatological data were recorded. The first visitor to the pig carcass was a muscid fly, seen within a minute, and followed by ants and spiders. Within half an hour, calliphorid flies came over. On the second day (fresh), few calliphorid and sarcophagid flies were found on the carcass. Two different species of moths were trapped in the hanging net. The first larva mass occurred on the third day (bloated) around the mouthpart, with some L1 and L2 found in the eyes. Reduvid bugs and Staphylinidae beetles were recovered on the fourth day (active decay), and new maggot masses occurred in the eyes and anus. L3 larvae could be found beneath the pig carcass on the fourth day. On the fifth day (active decay), new maggot masses were found on neck, thorax, and hind legs. Advance decay occurred on the sixth day with abundant maggots covering all over the body. The main adult fly population was Chrysomya megacephala (day 2 to day 6), but the larvae population was mainly those of Chrysomya rufifacies (day 4 to day 14). The dry stage began on the eighth day. Hermetia illucens adult was caught on day-13, and a larvae mass of Chrysomya rufifacies was seen burrowing under the soil. This forensic entomological research using pig carcass model was the first record in this country.
During a forensic entomological study conducted in a palm oil plantation in Tg.Sepat, Selangor in September 2007, a spider (Arachnida), Oxyopes sp. (Oxyopidae) was found to predate on a calliphorid fly (Chrysomya rufifacies). The female spider laid a silk thread, or "drag line", behind it as it moved. This spider bites its prey by using a pairs of chelicerae, and injecting venom into the fly. The fly was moving its wing trying to escape, however, it succumbed to the deadly bite.
This entomological study was conducted in a man-made freshwater pond in a palm oil plantation in Tanjung Sepat, Selangor from 23 July 2007 by using pig (Sus scrofa) as a carcass model. A 1.5 month old piglet (5 kg), which died of asphyxia after being accidentally crushed by its mother, was thrown into a pond. Observation was made for ten days; one visit per day and climatological data were recorded. On the first two days, the piglet carcass sunk to the bottom of the pond. The carcass floated to the surface on the third day but no fly activities were seen. The blow fly, Chrysomya megacephala and Chrysomya rufifacies started to oviposit on the fourth day. Other than adult flies, a spider (Arachnida) was also observed on the carcass. Bubbles accumulated at the mouthpart, and the abdomen was greenish black. A lot of blow fly eggs were seen on the body surface on the fifth day (floating decay), along with first and second instars C. megacephala crawling under the piglet's skin. On the sixth day, adult blow fly, C. megacephala,and C. rufifacies,and muscid flies, Ophyra spinigera and Musca domestica were observed on to the carcass. High numbers of first and second instars of flies were observed wandering around the body surface with C. megacephala larvae being the predominant species. Two prominent maggot masses occurred on seventh and eighth days. Bloated deterioration stage began on day eighth exposing rib bones, humerus bones and intestines. Carcass was partially sinking and the maggot masses were at the water level. On day ninth, the carcass was partially sinking and three maggot masses were observed on the exposed surface. There were very few adult flies, including a scarab beetle was sighted on the carcass at this stage. The carcass along with the maggots sunk on day tenth, leaving an oily layer on the water surface.
Phorid flies play an important role in forensic cases and can cause myiasis in humans. Studies on phorid flies species diversity are still limited in Malaysia. This research was carried out to collect information about species and frequency distribution of phorid flies as to provide more information on their roles in forensic and medical entomology. Bait trap was used with 100 g beef liver as baits. The species of the flies were identified using identification keys from Disney as well as Brown and Oliver. There were 449 phorid flies found in Kepong, Kuala Lumpur including Megaselia scalaris, Megaselia spiracularis, Megaselia sp. and phorid flies of genus X. Female phorid flies (98.89%) were found more prone to be trapped compared to male phorid flies (1.11%). Most phorid flies trapped in Kepong, Kuala Lumpur were from genus Megaselia and consisted of female flies. A total of five species of phorid flies probably new to science were also discovered. This study showed that Megaselia flies were found indoors rather than in open spaces. This was corresponding to their discoveries among the decomposing corpse found inside premises.
The anatomical structures of the first, second and third instars of Chrysomya rufifacies (Macquart) were examined by light microscopy. Observations were documented on the three main characteristics; the cephalopharyngeal skeleton, anterior spiracle and posterior spiracle. The first instar larva bore cornuae of fairly pigmented delineation with slim hypostomal sclerite and distinct dental sclerite. First instar did not have obscured anterior spiracle but posterior spiracles were obscured with thin lining of opened peritreme. Intersegmental spines were evident. The second instar larva displayed a prominent anterodorsal process approaching closer to hypostomal sclerite while upper margin of the dorsal cornua was slightly pigmented. Each anterior spiracle consisted of nine to ten papillae, arranged in a single row. Peritreme of the posterior spiracle thick, opening at the end of peritreme was not wide and confined to two spiracular slits. The third instar larva showed a prominent arch of the ventral cornua with broad and bold appearance. It approached the dorsal cornua and became narrow at the incision median. The anterior spiracle consisted of a single row of nine to ten papillae while intersegmental spine could be identified with one to three dark pigmented tips. A dark pigmented and wide periterime was observed confining three short and thick spiracular slits while button was poorly pigmented. The most distinctive feature of this second and third instar larva was the slender, thorn-like tubercle with numerous spined tips on the middle line segment of the body. These findings provide identification features of C. rufifacies larvae instars.
This study was carried out in Agricultural Park, Teluk Cempedak and Bukit Pelindung at Kuantan, Pahang in October 2007. These three areas were different in ecological characteristic, Agricultural Park is a lowland region in Kuantan rural area, Teluk Cempedak is Kuantan’s most famous beach, and Bukit Pelindung is a reserved rainforest which is 200 meters from the sea level. Fly specimens were collected using four different kinds of baits: dry prawn, salted fish, pork and mango. Each of these baits was placed in a plastic container and exposed for one hour to attract flies. Within 5 minutes, flies started swarming around the baits. The flies were more attracted to the pork and salted fish compared to the other two baits. Fifty one flies, one moth (Lepidoptera) and one wasp (Hymenoptera) were collected. In Agricultural Park, two Lucilia cuprina, one Chrysomya megacephala and one Sarcophaga sp. were collected. For Teluk Cempedak beach, there were two Sarcophagids, 31 Chrysomya megacephala, five Musca domestica, one Lucilia cuprina and one moth were caught. Flies collected from Bukit Pelindung included five C.megacephala, two Sarcophagids, one Musca domestica and one wasp. Most C.megacephala were attracted to the pork and salted fish.