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.
A forensic entomological study conducted in an oil palm plantation in Tanjung Sepat, Selangor, Malaysia on 3 August 2007 revealed that a housefly, Musca domestica Linnaeus oviposited its eggs on a freshly dead pig. This finding indicated that housefly might play an important role in forensic investigation in determining post-mortem interval (PMI), although it was not yet found in human corpses or any animal carrion. This preliminary paper presented a first record of Musca domestica eggs found on animal carcass in the country.
Helicobacter pylori antigen was prepared from an isolate from a patient with a duodenal ulcer. Serum samples were obtained from culture-positive H. pylori infected patients with duodenal ulcers, gastric ulcers and gastritis (n=30). As controls, three kinds of sera without detectable H. pylori IgG antibodies were used: 30 from healthy individuals without history of gastric disorders, 30 from patients who were seen in the endoscopy clinic but were H. pylori culture negative and 30 from people with other diseases. OFF-GEL electrophoresis, SDS-PAGE and Western blots of individual serum samples were used to identify protein bands with good sensitivity and specificity when probed with the above sera and HRP-conjugated anti-human IgG. Four H. pylori protein bands showed good (≥ 70%) sensitivity and high specificity (98-100%) towards anti-Helicobacter IgG antibody in culture- positive patients sera and control sera, respectively. The identities of the antigenic proteins were elucidated by mass spectrometry. The relative molecular weights and the identities of the proteins, based on MALDI TOF/ TOF, were as follows: CagI (25 kDa), urease G accessory protein (25 kDa), UreB (63 kDa) and proline/pyrroline- 5-carboxylate dehydrogenase (118 KDa). These identified proteins, singly and/or in combinations, may be useful for diagnosis of H. pylori infection in patients.
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 at an oil palm plantation in Tanjung Sepat, Kuala Langat, Selangor, a Bengalia emarginata Malloch, 1927 (Diptera: Calliphoridae: Calliphorinae: Bengalini) was collected for the first time. Two adults were collected nearby the pig carcass by the first author and identified by the second. Prior to this finding, nine species of Bengalia were recorded from peninsular Malaysia or Borneo. Male of B. emarginata are different from Bengalia varicolor Fabricious by the following characters: Sternite 5 projection rounded with small identation and mid tibia double-fringed in ventral surface.
Insects found associated with corpse can be used as one of the indicators in estimating postmortem interval (PMI). The objective of this study was to compare the stages of decomposition and faunal succession between a partially burnt pig (Sus scrofa Linnaeus) and natural pig (as control). The burning simulated a real crime whereby the victim was burnt by murderer. Two young pigs weighed approximately 10 kg were used in this study. Both pigs died from pneumonia and immediately placed in an oil palm plantation near a pig farm in Tanjung Sepat, Selangor, Malaysia. One pig was partially burnt by 1-liter petrol while the other served as control. Both carcasses were visited twice per day for the first week and once thereafter. Adult flies and larvae on the carcasses were collected and later processed in a forensic entomology laboratory. Results showed that there was no significant difference between the rate of decomposition and sequence of faunal succession on both pig carcasses. Both carcasses were completely decomposed to remain stage after nine days. The species of flies visiting the pig carcasses consisted of blow flies (Chrysomya megacephala, Chrysomya rufifacies, Hemipyrellia ligurriens), flesh fly (Sarcophagidae.), muscid fly (Ophyra spinigera), soldier fly (Hermetia illucens), coffin fly (Phoridae) and scavenger fly (Sepsidae). The only difference noted was in the number of adult flies, whereby more flies were seen in the control carcass. Faunal succession on both pig carcasses was in the following sequence: Calliphoridae, Sarcophagidae, Muscidae, Phoridae and lastly Stratiomyidae. However, there was overlap in the appearance of members of these families. Blowflies continued to oviposit on both carcasses. Hence postmortem interval (PMI) can still be estimated from the partially burnt pig carcass.
Demodicosis is an infestation of the skin with Demodex, an ectoparasite commonly found on the face. A cross-sectional study was conducted to detect the presence of the ectoparasite and the outcome of facial cleanser and moisturizer usage on its infestation. Universal sampling was performed among 390 medical students, age 20-25 years old in the Klang Valley of Malaysia. The biodata of the participants and information on the use of facial cleanser and moisturizer were obtained through questionnaire. Skin samples were obtained using both skin scraping and cellophane tape method and were subsequently examined directly by microscopy. The results show an overall prevalence of 17.2%. Males (21.5%) were affected more often than females (12.8%) (p = 0.022). There were no significant differences in the prevalence of the ectoparasite among different ethnic groups, age-groups and the presence of existing facial problems among the subjects. A lower infestation rate (11.45%) was found to be associated with the use of a moisturizer (p = 0.033). Both species of ectoparasites that infest man, Demodexfolliculorum and D. brevis, were detected in this study either as single or mixed infestations.
Signal fly, Scholastes sp. (Diptera: Platystomatidae) was observed associated with animal carcasses in Malaysia. The first observation was on a monkey carcass, which was killed by using a handgun and immediately placed in a forested area in Gombak, Selangor while the second observation was on a pig that died of natural causes and whose carcass was placed in an oil palm plantation in Tanjung Sepat, Selangor. Both animal carcasses were visited by Scholastes sp. flies during the fresh decomposition period. However, the role Scholastes flies in the decomposition process remains unknown. In this paper, we report the occurrence of Scholastes sp. on animal carcasses in Malaysia for the first time.