METHODS AND RESULTS: One-hundred and thirteen microfungi isolates were obtained from fruit rot infected banana in Peninsular Malaysia. However, this study was focused on the dominant number of the discovered microfungi that belongs to the genus Fusarium; 48 isolates of the microfungi have been identified belonging to 11 species of Fusarium, namely Fusarium incarnatum, Fusarium equiseti, Fusarium camptoceras, Fusarium solani, Fusarium concolor, Fusarium oxysporum, Fusarium proliferatum, Fusarium verticillioides, Fusarium sacchari, Fusarium concentricum and Fusarium fujikuroi. All Fusarium isolates were grouped into their respective clades indicating their similarities and differences in genetic diversity among isolates. Out of 48 Fusarium isolates tested, 42 isolates caused the fruit rot symptom at different levels of severity based on Disease Severity Index (DSI). The most virulent isolate was F. proliferatum B2433B with DSI of 100%.
CONCLUSIONS: All the isolated Fusarium species were successfully identified and some of them were confirmed as the causal agents of pre- and postharvest fruit rot in banana across Peninsular Malaysia.
SIGNIFICANCE AND IMPACT OF THE STUDY: Our results will provide additional information regarding new report of Fusarium species in causing banana fruit rot and in the search of potential biocontrol agent of the disease.
METHOD: We performed a cross-sectional study using the International Study of Asthma and Allergies in Childhood questionnaire to identify 7-12-year-old Malay children with asthma symptoms from a primary school in central Kuala Lumpur. Sixty-five of 76 children with 'ever wheeze' performed an exercise challenge test successfully in an uncontrolled environment. A random sample of 80 schoolchildren with no history of wheeze were similarly tested as controls. The relative humidity and temperature were recorded. A fall of > 15% was considered as clinically important.
RESULTS: The prevalence of EIB in schoolchildren with 'ever wheeze' was 47.7%. The prevalence of EIB in children with 'current wheeze' was 51.6%. The prevalence of EIB in controls was 7.5%. The relative humidity during the study ranged from 41 to 90%. There was no significant relationship between different humidity levels and EIB (P = 0.58, regression analysis).
CONCLUSION: This study demonstrates that EIB is present in asthmatic children despite the highly humid tropical environment.
METHODS: This is a multicentre descriptive case series of 21 patients comprising all MPS IVA patients in Malaysia. Mutational analysis was performed by PCR and Sanger sequencing of the GALNS gene in 17 patients.
RESULTS: The patients (15 females and 6 males) had a mean age (± SD) of 15.5 (± 8.1) years. Mean age at symptom onset was 2.6 (± 2.1) years and at confirmed diagnosis was 6.9 (± 4.5) years. The study cohort included patients from all the main ethnic groups in Malaysia - 57% Malay, 29% Chinese and 14% Indian. Common presenting symptoms included pectus carinatum (57%) and genu valgum (43%). Eight patients (38%) had undergone surgery, most commonly knee surgeries (29%) and cervical spine decompression (24%). Patients had limited endurance with lower mean walking distances with increasing age. GALNS gene analysis identified 18 distinct mutations comprising 13 missense, three nonsense, one small deletion and one splice site mutation. Of these, eight were novel mutations (Tyr133Ser, Glu158Valfs*12, Gly168*, Gly168Val, Trp184*, Leu271Pro, Glu320Lys, Leu508Pro). Mutations in exons 1, 5 and 9 accounted for 51% of the mutant alleles identified.
CONCLUSIONS: All the MPS IVA patients in this study had clinical impairments. A better understanding of the natural history and the clinical and genetic spectrum of MPS IVA in this population may assist early diagnosis, improve management and permit timely genetic counselling and prenatal diagnosis.