Gynura procumbens which is locally known as 'Sambung nyawa' in Malay and 'Feng Wei Jian' in Chinese, belongs to the botanical family of Compositae. In this study, antioxidant property of G. procumbens extracts was evaluated using DPPH radical scavenging, metal chelating and β-carotene bleaching assays. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report that evaluated the cytotoxicity of G. procumbens extracts on human colon cancer cells (HT-29, HCT 116, HCT-15, SW480, Caco-2) and human normal colon cells (CCD-18Co). The results showed that ethyl acetate extract contained the highest total phenolic content (172.68 mg of GAEs/g of extract) compared to methanol, hexane and water extracts. Methanol extract possessed better overall antioxidant activities while ethyl acetate extract demonstrated better cytotoxic activity. At 24 h treatment, ethyl acetate extract demonstrated selective cytotoxicity against HT-29 and HCT 116 cells with IC50 values of 35.7 and 42.6 μg/mL, respectively. In addition, methanol extract showed negligible level of toxicity when administered orally. All the results indicated that G. procumbens may provide benefits in prevention and treatment of cancer.
Development of hot spring touristic projects receives more interest in Malaysia in recent years since the country has a high potential of hot springs that are vital to the economy. However, such developmental activities could produce negative impacts if not accompanied with adequate knowledge of the subsurface conditions. Active multichannel analysis of surface waves (MASW) was applied to determine the subsurface shear wave velocities and Vs30. The inverted shear waves velocity models have then presented in both vertical cross-sectional plots and depth slices maps. Depth slices were chosen at about 5, 18.5 m and 32 m depths. Model obtained showed that the soil is stiffer near the highway side and turns to be softer as we go away in the scrub direction. Vs30 is also estimated and mapped to show the quality of the soil. Inverted parameters showed that the soil at the site ranges from soft soil to stiff one. Also, the result obtained proposed that the surface occurrence of the hot spring might be a result of intersection of faulted segments, where hot spring is located near the intersection points. Furthermore, the model helped in proposing a suitable for complex extension. The proposed is chosen such that it minimize any possible effects on the geothermal resources at the site.
The present study aims to improve the oxidation stability of wild apricot kernel oil biodiesel (WAKOB) by using natural antioxidants of Tartary buckwheat (Fagopyrum tataricum (L.) Gaertn). Biodiesel was synthesized at different catalyst (NaOH) concentrations, reaction temperatures, reaction time intervals and methanol-to-oil molar ratios. Thermal oxidative stability measurements were carried out according to EN14112 using a Rancimet instrument. Our results showed a high yield of biodiesel (97±1.092) at 65oC in the presence of 1% NaOH (%w/w oil) and methanol/oil molar ratio of 9:1 and for the time duration of 60 min. Proton nuclear magnetic resonance (1H NMR) confirmed the conversion percentage of kernel oil into biodiesel, which was further evidenced by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FT-IR) and refractometer analyses. Methanolic fraction of Tartary buckwheat leaves (MTBWLF) was standardized to contain the highest amount of phenolics (209 mg gallic acid/100 g). In this study, the mixture of synthetic antioxidant butylated hydroxyl toluene (BHT) (0.25%) and methanolic extract of Tartary buckwheat leaves (0.5%) ensured high oxidation stability of biodiesel samples, leading to stabilizing factor of 4.86.
The location model proposed in the past is a predictive discriminant rule that can classify new observations into one
of two predefined groups based on mixtures of continuous and categorical variables. The ability of location model to
discriminate new observation correctly is highly dependent on the number of multinomial cells created by the number
of categorical variables. This study conducts a preliminary investigation to show the location model that uses maximum
likelihood estimation has high misclassification rate up to 45% on average in dealing with more than six categorical
variables for all 36 data tested. Such model indicated highly incorrect prediction as this model performed badly for
large categorical variables even with large sample size. To alleviate the high rate of misclassification, a new strategy
is embedded in the discriminant rule by introducing nonlinear principal component analysis (NPCA) into the classical
location model (cLM), mainly to handle the large number of categorical variables. This new strategy is investigated
on some simulation and real datasets through the estimation of misclassification rate using leave-one-out method. The
results from numerical investigations manifest the feasibility of the proposed model as the misclassification rate is
dramatically decreased compared to the cLM for all 18 different data settings. A practical application using real dataset
demonstrates a significant improvement and obtains comparable result among the best methods that are compared. The
overall findings reveal that the proposed model extended the applicability range of the location model as previously it
was limited to only six categorical variables to achieve acceptable performance. This study proved that the proposed
model with new discrimination procedure can be used as an alternative to the problems of mixed variables classification,
primarily when facing with large categorical variables.
According to the World Cancer Research Fund International (WCRFI), breast cancer is the most common type of cancer in women worldwide with recorded 1.7 million new cases in 2012. The main line of treatments is still limited to chemotherapy, surgery and radiotherapy which could lead to a wide range of dangerous side effects. This study was conducted to evaluate the effect of low intensity ultrasound (LIUS) on cell proliferation, percentage of living and dead cells and the induction of apoptosis on the MCF-7 cell line with CHO cells as the control for non-cancerous group. In order to achieve the objective of this study, several methods of cell-bioguided assays were used including the MTT assay for cell proliferation, Live/Dead assay for the determination of both live and dead cells and gene expression study for the detection of apoptosis in the cells. The cytotoxicity and Live/Dead assays data provided preliminary data that the LIUS has potential to induce apoptosis in a wide population of breast cancer cells. Furthermore, the LIUS treatment induced the expression of p53-mRNA at a detectable level via qPCR analysis, indicating the activation of apoptosis. In short, our study suggested LIUS dosage used in this study could potentially show positive effects in the induction of apoptosis selectively on the MCF-7 with less harm to the control CHO cells.
There is growing interest in the use of plant bioresources for managing type 2 diabetes. In this study, Rhodamnia cinerea, which is used traditionally to manage diseases in Malaysia, was explored for its antidiabetic effects. Type 2 diabetic rats were managed for 4 weeks using aqueous extract of R. cinerea or quercetin. Weights and fasting glucose were measured weekly, while serum lipid profiles, insulin, antioxidant status, urea, creatinine and liver enzymes were assayed at the end. Sorbitol contents, antioxidant capacities and aldose reductase activities of the kidney, lens and sciatic nerve were also assessed. The results showed that the aqueous extract of R. Cinerea mainly contained Myricitrin and it reduced glycemia (p>0.05), lipid profiles (p<0.05), F2-isoprostanes (p<0.05) and overall metabolic condition of type 2 diabetic rats. R. cinerea also attenuated sorbitol contents of the nerve (p<0.05) and kidney (p<0.05), partly through regulating the activity of aldose reductase (p<0.05 for nerve) and sorbitol dehydrogenase (p<0.05 for kidney) in comparison with diabetic untreated group. Quercetin is a known aldose reductase inhibitor and can improve several metabolic indices related to Type 2 diabetes. In this study, the results of R. cinerea were comparable to or better than those of quercetin, suggesting that R. cinerea extract can be a good candidate for managing Type 2 diabetes and its complications related to sorbitol accumulation.
The present study investigated the concentration of metals in commonly grown vegetables (Luffa acutangula L., Zea mays L., Solanum melongena L.) irrigated with waste water in District Bannu, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan. The pH (5.80) and electrical conductivity (13 dS/m) of waste water indicated the acidic nature that is not suitable for irrigation purposes. Soil and vegetables samples were analyzed for metals concentration through flame atomic absorption spectrometry (Varian FAAS-240). The findings showed that waste water irrigated soil was highly contaminated with Cd (4.62 mg/kg) which was above permissible limits set by European Union Standard (EU 2006, 2002). The concentrations of heavy metals such as Cr and Cd in vegetables were higher than the permissible limits set by World Health Organization/Food and Agriculture Organization U.S.A guidelines 2001. The health hazard quotient (HQ) of waste water irrigated vegetables was observed higher for Ni (0.699-0.1029 mg/kg), (0.0456-0.1040 mg/kg), (0.731-0.0994 mg/kg) in Luffa acutangula, Solanum melongena and Zea mays, respectively. The study concluded that the consumption of commonly grown vegetables in waste water zone of the study area may pose potential health threats in local population.
Implementation of sound fertilizer management in rice cultivation is essential in optimizing productivity and profitability. The use of controlled release fertilizer (CRF) to improve crop production in various cropping systems has been widely explored, with new approaches and materials continually being studied to produce new CRF. A field study was carried out to determine the efficiency of local CRFs on rice production and N uptake using MR220 CL1 rice variety. Ten different types of CRFs consisting of two groups namely biochar impregnated urea (BIU 300-5, BIU 300-10, BIU 700-5 and BIU 700-10) and palm stearin (PS) coated urea with nitrification inhibitors (PS, PS+DMPP-100, PS+DMPP-50, PS+DMPP-150, PS+Cu and PS+Zn) were used as treatments. Plant height, SPAD reading, 1000-grain weight and harvest index (HI) showed significant improvement in rice treated with both biochar impregnated and palm stearin coated urea. With respect to grain yield, BIU 300-10, BIU 700-5, BIU 700-10, PS+DMPP-100, PS+DMPP-50, PS+DMPP-150 and PS+Cu treatments significantly increased rice yield. The CRFs mostly showed significantly higher N uptake in rice, especially in rice grains, however, there was no significant difference among treatments in soil residual ammonium (NH4+-N). The newly-developed CRFs showed huge potential as an alternative for common urea, especially BIU 700-5, BIU 700-10, PS+DMPP-100 and PS+DMPP-50, in increasing rice grain yield. With proper approaches, these CRFs can contribute in improving rice production to provide sufficient food for ever increasing population.
A study was conducted to determine the seroprevalence and risk factors associated with brucellosis in farmers, veterinary technical staff and other volunteers in Peninsular Malaysia using the One Health concept. A cross sectional study design was employed to sample a population of farmers and Veterinary technical staff on a volunteer basis. The Brucella Coombs test was used to elucidate the seroprevalence of brucellosis in the sampled population and the associated factors and predictors for brucellosis. The seroprevalence of brucellosis among farmers and non-farmers (veterinary technical staff and others) of 446 people studied was 1.35% (95% CI=0.28-2.42). Occupation, age and drinking unpasteurized milk were significant risk factors for brucellosis using multivariate logistic regression at 90% confidence level. The odds of having brucellosis increased by 7.19 times in farmers compared to non-farmers (90% CI=1.16, 44.71), it increased 7.16 times in individuals 40 years and below compared with those above 40 years old (90% CI=1.16, 44.41) and 4.45 times among those who drink unpasteurized milk compared to those who do not (90% CI= 1.03, 19.15). This study highlights the current state of human brucellosis in Malaysia among those groups that are occupationally at risk. A nationwide health education of the occupationally exposed population especially farmers may decrease the incidence of the infection and support the on-going eradication efforts of brucellosis in Malaysia.
Tujuan kajian ini adalah untuk menilai kepekatan aktiviti radionuklid tabii (226Ra, 232Th dan 40K) dalam makanan asas, sayur-sayuran, buah-buahan dan lauk-pauk di kawasan tengah Malaysia. Kepekatan aktiviti purata (Bq/kg) diukur menggunakan spektrometer gama berketulenan tinggi (HPGe). Tiga radionuklid 226Ra, 232Th dan 40K masing-masing memberikan keputusan 0.64 ± 0.17, 1.23 ± 0.14 dan 96.61 ± 1.87 (bagi sampel makanan asas); 2.07 ± 0.31, 2.12 ± 0.24 dan 791.51 ± 3.66 (bagi sampel sayur-sayuran); 2.44 ± 0.34, 1.54 ± 0.25 dan 288.63 ± 2.83 (bagi sampel buah-buahan) dan 0.72 ± 0.25, 0.80 ± 0.25 dan 195.67 ± 2.54 (bagi sampel lauk-pauk). Keputusan kajian ini didapati berada di dalam julat keputusan kajian terdahulu sekaligus menunjukkan kepekatan aktiviti purata 226Ra, 232Th dan 40K berada pada aras yang selamat dan dapat diterima.
Over many years, forested land transformation into urban, agriculture and mining areas within Tasik Chini Catchment become more intense. These activities have negatively affected the catchment through soil erosion and increased the amount of sediments that deposited into the lake. Hence, the present study aimed to estimate soil erosion risk within Tasik Chini Catchment integrating the Revised Universal Soil Loss Equation (RUSLE) model and remotely sensed geospatial data. The multispectral imagery from LANDSAT 8 was used to provide up to date information on land cover within the catchment. The result shows the majority of Tasik Chini Catchment is classified at very low class (< 10 ton ha−1 yr−1) about 4835.34 ha (92.38%), followed by the low class (10-50 ton ha−1 yr−1) with total area of 175.47 ha (3.35%), moderate high class (50-100 ton ha−1 yr−1) with total area of 65.11 ha (1.24%), high class (100-150 ton ha−1 yr−1) with total area of 38.37 ha (0.73%) and very high class (> 150 ton ha−1 yr−1) with total area of 120.04 ha (2.30%). Tasik Chini Catchment is very susceptible to soil erosion especially on northwest and southeast regions, where the main sources of soil loss come from the agricultural, new settlements and mining activities. To conclude, the estimation of soil erosion model using remotely sensed data can be used to build sustainable development strategy within Tasik Chini Catchment in the future.
Condition Index (CI) was used to estimate the reproductive biology cycle of the hard clam Meretrix lyrata based on dry
body weight and shell weight. High CI value was observed due to the increase in the body weight of the hard clam that
corresponding to the maturity stage and early spawning. The CI value of M. lyrata from Buntal Village, Kuching, Sarawak
showed three highest peaks during the 12-month study on May and October 2013 and March 2014. The lowest CI values
were obtained in September and November 2013 and April 2014. Ammonia nitrogen was the only water parameter that
significantly correlated to the CI values. The CI application is important to estimate the maturity of hard clam gonad
to facilitate conservation activity through the hard clam harvesting out of the gonad maturation and spawning period.
Various production methods have been developed for graphene production, but each of them falls short in either the economic or quality aspect. In this paper, we present the flame deposition method, a modified chemical vapor deposition (CVD) that uses an open-flame. In this method, resulting carbon deposits were found to be graphitic in nature, thereby suggesting multilayer graphene growth in a very short reaction time of 5 min. Furthermore, the deposits were transferred onto a cyanoacrylate plastic substrate and its sheet resistance was measured to be 81 ohm/square. The results showed that open-flame deposition exhibits high potential for low-cost, low-energy and high-quality production of graphene.
A nanofluid is a suspension of nano-sized particles dispersed in a base fluid. It is very much obligatory to know more about stability and thermal characteristics of such a nanofluid for their further use in practical applications. In this research, multiwalled carbon nanotubes (CNT) is dispersed in water. CNT dispersed in water is highly unstable and it sediments rapidly due to the Vander Waals force of attraction. Therefore, to overcome this limitation, xanthan gum (XG) was added which behave as a promising dispersant followed by 4 h water bath sonication. Experimental work includes stability studies using UV Vis spectroscopy with respect to CNT concentration (0.01 and 0.1 wt. %) and XG concentration (0.04 and 0.2 wt. %). The thermal conductivity of the most stable suspensions was measured using KD 2 Pro as a function of temperature (25-70°C) and CNT concentration. The optimum XG concentration was found for each CNT concentration studied. Thermal conductivity was observed to be strongly dependent on temperature and CNT concentration. The dispersion state of the CNT-water nanofluid is further examined using scanning electron microscope (SEM). In short, CNT nanofluids are found to be more suitable for heat transfer applications in many industries due to their enhanced thermal conductivity property. This work provides useful insight on the behavior of CNT nanofluids.
Rat bioassay was used to evaluate the nutritional quality of beef burger as influenced by the addition of selected herbs and vegetables. The selected herbs and vegetables used were pucuk ubi (Mannihot esculenta), pucuk gajus (Anacardium occidentale), pegaga (Centella asiatica) and jantung pisang (Musa paradisiaca) as treatment group with casein and skimmed milk as reference. The rats were fed with herbs and vegetables at the rate of 0.5 (low dose) and 25 (high dose) g/kg body weight. The samples were analyzed for proximate analysis, protein quality and protein digestibility. The rats fed with pucuk ubi (high dose) (364.30 ± 25.34 g) indicated the highest mean of increased body weight (121.05 ± 14.65 g) while rats fed with skimmed milk (310.98 ± 18.92 g) showed the lowest mean increase in body weight (88.33 ± 14.25 g). As for the Protein Efficiency Ratio (PER) value, all the rats fed with herbs diet showed PER values that were significantly lower (p<0.05) compared to the casein. As for the in vivo apparent protein digestibility test, casein showed the highest digestibility value (86.33 ± 4.20) while pucuk gajus (high dose) (59.59 ± 5.41) showed the lowest. As for the in vitro digestibility analyses, casein indicated the highest value for in vitro digestibility (93.84 ± 0.33). Administration of herbs and vegetables at low and high doses show significant effects (p<0.05) on nutritional quality of beef burger. In conclusion, it was found that antinutritional factors in selected herbs and vegetables might affect the nutritional quality of beef burger.
Abdominal obesity is an important contributor for health risk factors such as hypertension, diabetes mellitus and hypercholesterolemia. Therefore, the application of a proper method is important prerequisite in performing abdominal obesity assessment. In this study, we applied 3D body scanning technology to measure waist circumference (WC), hip circumference (HC) and waist to hip ratio (WHR) precisely in an effort to improve the current health assessment for abdominal obesity. A total of 200 Malaysian women with sedentary lifestyle, aged between 18 and 60 years participated in this study. Paired t-test was used to determine the differences between the automated (3D body scanner) and manual measurements of WC, HC and WHR. 3D body scanner measurements show that 27% of subjects had mild abdominal obesity (80 - 90 cm) and 34.5% of subjects had severe abdominal obesity (≥90 cm) based on WC cutoff points. Based on WHR cutoff points, 57% of subjects had abdominal obesity (≥0.85) while the remaining were without abdominal obesity (<0.85). Lower percentages of abdominal obesity prevalence were reported for both WC and WHR categories using manual measurements. We also found that in normal BMI category, 8.5% of subjects have mild abdominal obesity based on automated measurements while only 5.5% of subjects were identified on manual measurements. The result of this study indicated that 3D body scanner provided better assessment method as it enables detection of abdominal obesity in more subjects based on WC and WHR categories. Public agencies are encouraged to consider the application of 3D body scanning in health assessment of abdominal obesity.
An experiment was carried out to investigate the effects of oxalic acid administration on feed intake and nutrient digestibility in goats. Four female cross bred (Boer × local) goats (average body weight of 46.3 kg) were randomly assigned to four experimental diets including oxalic acid administration at levels of 0, 2.25, 4.50 and 6.75 g/animal/d in a 4×4 Latin Square design. Oxalic acid diluted with water was administered orally via syringe to experimental goats once daily for four experimental periods. Each experimental period was lasted 21 d in length, comprising 14 d of adaptation to the experimental diet followed by 7 d of data collection. All the animals were individually fed with Napier grass ad libitum supplemented with 300 g (fresh basis) pelleted compound feed per goat per day throughout the study. Feed composition, feed intake, nutrient intake and nutrient digestibility were determined. Intakes of dry matter (DM), organic matter (OM), crude protein (CP), neutral detergent fibre (NDF) and metabolisable energy tended to linearly decrease with the increasing rate of oxalic acid administration, with the value in the 6.75 g oxalic acid/animal/d treatment being significantly (p<0.05) lower than the control (0 g oxalic acid/animal/d) treatment. The oxalic acid administration had no effect on apparent digestibilities of DM, OM, CP and NDF. The experiment demonstrated that oxalic acid administration may influence in the DM and nutrient intakes, but not influence on DM and nutrient digestibilities in goats.
Nowadays, in extreme changing environments, development of submergence tolerance variety is necessary for ensuring
crop production stability where, it is known that Malaysian commercial rice varieties such as MR219, MR220 and MR263
were severely susceptible to submergence. First step towards the development of submergence tolerance variety starts
with the breeding program by crossing MR263 and Swarna-Sub1. Marker-assisted selection (MAS) was carried out through
the utilization of simple sequence repeats (SSR) markers, considering its reliability as pre-selection tools to conduct this
generations plants were confirmed by tightly linked markers. In case of background study, out of 180 SSR
markers, 38 were found polymorphic between two parents. Association of molecular markers and submergence tolerance
were determined using Chi-square test. MR263 × Swarna-Sub1 F2 lines were tested for Sub1 gene conformation using
the markers RM8300 and RM219. These markers showed a good fit to the expected marker segregation ratio (1:2:1) in
a Mendelian single gene model (DF=1.0, p≤0.05). Eleven homozygous lines with Sub1 gene out of 256 were selected
for future development of submergence tolerant varieties. Eleven lines were selected based on phenotypic study and
Herbal medicine is usually made using dry powdered herbs in the form of capsule. Capsule form herbal supplement suffers lower shelf life as compared to compact herbal powder in tablet form. In this study, Diabecine™, a blend of herbal medicine traditionally used as herbal supplement for diabetic patients was selected and transformed into a compressed tablet. Direct compression method and minimal usage of excipients were the aims of this study. By using direct compression, the blend of 40% fine powder herbs and 60% of excipients performed the best and fulfill the pharmaceutical standard. The safety data of microbial and heavy metal testing obtained met the safety requirements for herbal supplement category under the National Pharmaceutical Control Bureau of Malaysia. In conclusion, the tablet formulation of Diabecine™ is suitable to be manufactured by using direct compression method. This research implicates the possibility of producing tablets with high dose of herbal powder by direct compression method.
Nitrogen doped titanium dioxide (N-doped TiO2
) was synthesized by microwave using urea as nitrogen sources with
commercially available TiO2
-P25. The N-doped TiO2
was compared with unmodified TiO2
by carrying out the investigation
on its properties using x-ray diffraction (XRD) analysis, Brunauer-Emmett-Teller (BET), Fourier transformed infrared
spectroscopy (FTIR) and diffuse reflectance spectroscopy (UV-Vis DRS). The photocatalytic activities of N-doped TiO2
and unmodified TiO2 were studied for photodegradation of reactive red 4 (RR4) under light emitting diode (LED) light
irradiation. An active photoresponse under LED light irradiation was observed from N-doped TiO2
with 60 min of time
irradiation to complete RR4 color removal while no photocatalytic degradation was observed from unmodified.