Thymoquinone (TQ) has been shown to exhibit antitumor properties. Thymoquinone-loaded nanostructured lipid carrier (TQ-NLC) was developed to improve the bioavailability and cytotoxicity of TQ. This study was conducted to determine the cytotoxic effects of TQ-NLC on breast cancer (MDA-MB-231 and MCF-7) and cervical cancer cell lines (HeLa and SiHa). TQ-NLC was prepared by applying the hot high pressure homogenization technique. The mean particle size of TQ-NLC was 35.66 ± 0.1235 nm with a narrow polydispersity index (PDI) lower than 0.25. The zeta potential of TQ-NLC was greater than -30 mV. Polysorbate 80 helps to increase the stability of TQ-NLC. Differential scanning calorimetry showed that TQ-NLC has a melting point of 56.73°C, which is lower than that of the bulk material. The encapsulation efficiency of TQ in TQ-NLC was 97.63 ± 0.1798% as determined by HPLC analysis. TQ-NLC exhibited antiproliferative activity towards all the cell lines in a dose-dependent manner which was most cytotoxic towards MDA-MB-231 cells. Cell shrinkage was noted following treatment of MDA-MB-231 cells with TQ-NLC with an increase of apoptotic cell population (P < 0.05). TQ-NLC also induced cell cycle arrest. TQ-NLC was most cytotoxic towards MDA-MB-231 cells. It induced apoptosis and cell cycle arrest in the cells.
Phosphate solubilizing bacteria (PSB) can convert insoluble form of phosphorous to an available form. Applications of PSB as inoculants increase the phosphorus uptake by plant in the field. In this study, isolation and precise identification of PSB were carried out in Malaysian (Serdang) oil palm field (University Putra Malaysia). Identification and phylogenetic analysis of 8 better isolates were carried out by 16S rRNA gene sequencing in which as a result five isolates belong to the Beta subdivision of Proteobacteria, one isolate was related to the Gama subdivision of Proteobacteria, and two isolates were related to the Firmicutes. Bacterial isolates of 6upmr, 2upmr, 19upmnr, 10upmr, and 24upmr were identified as Alcaligenes faecalis. Also, bacterial isolates of 20upmnr and 17upmnr were identified as Bacillus cereus and Vagococcus carniphilus, respectively, and bacterial isolates of 31upmr were identified as Serratia plymuthica. Molecular identification and characterization of oil palm strains as the specific phosphate solubilizer can reduce the time and cost of producing effective inoculate (biofertilizer) in an oil palm field.
Disability caused by migraine may be one of the main causes of burden contributing to poor quality of life (QOL) among migraine patients. Thus, this study aimed to measure QOL among migraine sufferers in comparison with healthy controls.
A series of hexahydro-1,6-naphthyridines were synthesized in good yields by the reaction of 3,5-bis[(E)-arylmethylidene]tetrahydro-4(1H)-pyridinones with cyanoacetamide in the presence of sodium ethoxide under simple mixing at ambient temperature for 6-10 minutes and were assayed for their acetylcholinesterase (AChE) inhibitory activity using colorimetric Ellman's method. Compound 4e with methoxy substituent at ortho-position of the phenyl rings displayed the maximum inhibitory activity with IC50 value of 2.12 μM. Molecular modeling simulation of 4e was performed using three-dimensional structure of Torpedo californica AChE (TcAChE) enzyme to disclose binding interaction and orientation of this molecule into the active site gorge of the receptor.
28 new pyrrolidine types of compounds as analogues for natural polyhydroxy alkaloids of codonopsinine were evaluated for their anti-MRSA activity using MIC and MBC value determination assay against a panel of S. aureus isolates. One pyrrolidine compound, MFM 501, exhibited good inhibitory activity with MIC value of 15.6 to 31.3 μg/mL against 55 S. aureus isolates (43 MRSA and 12 MSSA isolates). The active compound also displayed MBC values between 250 and 500 μg/mL against 58 S. aureus isolates (45 MRSA and 13 MSSA isolates) implying that MFM 501 has a bacteriostatic rather than bactericidal effect against both MRSA and MSSA isolates. In addition, MFM 501 showed no apparent cytotoxicity activity towards three normal cell lines (WRL-68, Vero, and 3T3) with IC50 values of >625 µg/mL. Selectivity index (SI) of MFM 501 gave a value of >10 suggesting that MFM 501 is significant and suitable for further in vivo investigations. These results suggested that synthetically derived intermediate compounds based on natural products may play an important role in the discovery of new anti-infective agents against MRSA.
Palm oil is one of the most important agroindustries in Malaysia. Huge quantities of palm oil mill effluent (POME) pose a great threat to aqueous environment due to its very high COD. To make full use of discharged wastes, the integrated "zero discharge" pilot-scale industrial plant comprising "pretreatment-anaerobic and aerobic process-membrane separation" was continuously operated for 1 year. After pretreatment in the oil separator tank, 55.6% of waste oil in raw POME could be recovered and sold and anaerobically digested through 2 AnaEG reactors followed by a dissolved air flotation (DAF); average COD reduced to about 3587 mg/L, and biogas production was 27.65 times POME injection which was used to generate electricity. The aerobic effluent was settled for 3 h or/and treated in MBR which could remove BOD3 (30°C) to less than 20 mg/L as required by Department of Environment of Malaysia. After filtration by UF and RO membrane, all organic compounds and most of the salts were removed; RO permeate could be reused as the boiler feed water. RO concentrate combined with anaerobic surplus sludge could be used as biofertilizer.
Background. Education is usually associated with improvement in health; there is evidence that this may not be the case if education is not fully utilised at work. This study examines the relationship between education level, occupation, and health outcomes of individuals in rural Malaysia. Results. The study finds that the incidence of chronic diseases and high blood pressure are higher for tertiary educated individuals in agriculture and construction occupations. This brings these individuals into more frequent contact with the health system. These occupations are marked with generally lower levels of education and contain fewer individuals with higher levels of education. Conclusions. Education is not always associated with better health outcomes. In certain occupations, greater education seems related to increased chronic disease and contact with the health system, which is the case for workers in agriculture in rural Malaysia. Agriculture is the largest sector of employment in rural Malaysia but with relatively few educated individuals. For the maintenance and sustainability of productivity in this key rural industry, health monitoring and job enrichment policies should be encouraged by government agencies to be part of the agenda for employers in these sectors.
Silicon (Si) is one of the most prevalent macroelements, performing an essential function in healing plants in response to environmental stresses. The purpose of using Si is to induce resistance to distinct stresses, diseases, and pathogens. Additionally, Si can improve the condition of soils, which contain toxic levels of heavy metals along with other chemical elements. Silicon minimizes toxicity of Fe, Al, and Mn, increases the availability of P, and enhances drought along with salt tolerance in plants through the formation of silicified tissues in plants. However, the concentration of Si depends on the plants genotype and organisms. Hence, the physiological mechanisms and metabolic activities of plants may be affected by Si application. Peptides as well as amino acids can effectively create polysilicic species through interactions with different species of silicate inside solution. The carboxylic acid and the alcohol groups of serine and asparagine tend not to engage in any significant role in polysilicates formation, but the hydroxyl group side chain can be involved in the formation of hydrogen bond with Si(OH)4. The mechanisms and trend of Si absorption are different between plant species. Furthermore, the transportation of Si requires an energy mechanism; thus, low temperatures and metabolic repressors inhibit Si transportation.
Background. Caffeic acid phenethyl ester (CAPE) has been reported to possess time-dependent fibrinolytic activity by in vitro assay. This study is aimed at investigating fibrinolytic dose-dependent activity of CAPE using in vitro assays. Methods. Standardized human whole blood (WB) clots were incubated in either blank controls or different concentrations of CAPE (3.75, 7.50, 15.00, 22.50, and 30.00 mM). After 3 hours, D-dimer (DD) levels and WB clot weights were measured for each concentration. Thromboelastography (TEG) parameters were recorded following CAPE incubation, and fibrin morphology was examined under a confocal microscope. Results. Overall, mean DD (μg/mL) levels were significantly different across samples incubated with different CAPE concentrations, and the median pre- and postincubation WB clot weights (grams) were significantly decreased for each CAPE concentration. Fibrin removal was observed microscopically and indicated dose-dependent effects. Based on the TEG test, the Ly30 fibrinolytic parameter was significantly different between samples incubated with two different CAPE concentrations (15.0 and 22.50 mM). The 50% effective dose (ED50) of CAPE (based on DD) was 1.99 mg/mL. Conclusions. This study suggests that CAPE possesses fibrinolytic activity following in vitro incubation and that it has dose-dependent activities. Therefore, further investigation into CAPE as a potential alternative thrombolytic agent should be conducted.
Much debate in schizotypal research has centred on the factor structure of the Schizotypal Personality Questionnaire (SPQ), with research variously showing higher-order dimensionality consisting of two to seven dimensions. In addition, cross-cultural support for the stability of those factors remains limited. Here, we examined the factor structure of the SPQ among British and Trinidadian adults. Participants from a White British subsample (n = 351) resident in the UK and from an African Caribbean subsample (n = 284) resident in Trinidad completed the SPQ. The higher-order factor structure of the SPQ was analysed through confirmatory factor analysis, followed by multiple-group analysis for the model of best fit. Between-group differences for sex and ethnicity were investigated using multivariate analysis of variance in relation to the higher-order domains. The model of best-fit was the four-factor structure, which demonstrated measurement invariance across groups. Additionally, these data had an adequate fit for two alternative models: (a) 3-factor and (b) modified 4-factor model. The British subsample had significantly higher scores across all domains than the Trinidadian group, and men scored significantly higher on the disorganised domain than women. The four-factor structure received confirmatory support and, importantly, support for use with populations varying in ethnicity and culture.
The influenza virus (IV) is known to be a resistant virus with frequent mutations, causing severe respiratory diseases in the upper respiratory system. Public health concerns about clinical efficacy of all conventional drugs are ambiguous; therefore, finding additional therapeutic agents is critical to prevent and control influenza outbreaks. Influenza is associated with the induction of proinflammatory cytokines. Scientists have reported that anti-inflammatory drugs, with pleiotropic effects, reduce the burden of severe influenza diseases. Therefore, statins, which are cardioprotective drugs with anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory effects, may help patients suffering from influenza virus (IV). This review delineates the potential use of statins as an alternative therapy in treating influenza related illness.
The influence of Moringa oleifera (MO) leaf extract as a dietary supplement on the growth performance and antioxidant parameters was evaluated on broiler meat and the compounds responsible for the corresponding antioxidant activity were identified. 0.5%, 1.0%, and 1.5% w/v of MO leaf aqueous extracts (MOLE) were prepared, and nutritional feed supplemented with 0%, 0.5%, 1.0%, and 1.5% w/w of MO leaf meal (MOLM) extracts were also prepared and analysed for their in vitro antioxidant potential. Furthermore, the treated broiler groups (control (T1) and treatment (T2, T3, and T4)) were evaluated for performance, meat quality, and antioxidant status. The results of this study revealed that, among the broilers fed MOLM, the broilers fed 0.5% w/w MOLM (T2) exhibited enhanced meat quality and antioxidant status (P < 0.05). However, the antioxidant activity of the MOLE is greater than that of the MOLM. The LC-MS/MS analysis of MOLM showed high expression of isoflavones and fatty acids from soy and corn source, which antagonistically inhibit the expression of the flavonoids/phenols in the MO leaves thereby masking its antioxidant effects. Thus, altering the soy and corn gradients in conventional nutrition feed with 0.5% w/w MO leaves supplement would provide an efficient and cost-effective feed supplement.
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.
Migraine is the most common form of headache disorder globally. The etiology of migraine is multifactorial, with genetic components and environmental interactions considered to be the main causal factors. Some researchers postulate that deficits in mitochondrial energy reserves can cause migraine or an increase in homocysteine levels can lead to migraine attacks; therefore, vitamins could play a vital role in migraine prevention. For instance, riboflavin influences mitochondrial dysfunction and prevents migraine. Genes such as flavoenzyme 5,10-methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR), especially the C677T variant, have been associated with elevated plasma levels of homocysteine and migraine with aura. Homocysteine catalyzation requires the presence of vitamins B6, B12, and folic acid, which can decrease the severity of migraine with aura, making these vitamins potentially useful prophylactic agents for treating migraine with aura. Menstrual migraine, on the other hand, is associated with increased prostaglandin (PG) levels in the endometrium, indicating a role for vitamin E, which is an anti-PG. Vitamin C can also be used as a scavenger of reactive oxygen species for treating neurogenic inflammation in migraine patients. This paper reviews possible therapies based on vitamin supplementation for migraine prophylaxis, focusing on migraine with aura and menstrual migraine.
Brain injury such as traumatic brain injury (TBI) and stroke is the major cause of long-term disabilities in many countries. The increasing rate of brain damaged victims and the heterogeneity of impairments decrease rehabilitation effectiveness and competence resulting in higher cost of rehabilitation treatment. On the other hand, traditional rehabilitation exercises are boring, thus leading patients to neglect the prescribed exercises required for recovery. Therefore, we propose game-based approach to address these problems. This paper presents a rehabilitation gaming system (RGS) for cognitive rehabilitation. The RGS is developed based on a proposed conceptual framework which has also been presented in this paper.
Lead- (Pb-) induced oxidative stress is known to suppress growth performance and feed efficiency in broiler chickens. In an attempt to describe the specific underlying mechanisms of such phenomenon we carried out the current study. Ninety-six one-day-old broiler chicks were randomly assigned to 2 dietary treatment groups of 6 pen replicates, namely, (i) basal diet containing no lead supplement (control) and (ii) basal diet containing 200 mg lead acetate/kg of diet. Following 3 weeks of experimental period, jejunum samples were collected to examine the changes in gene expression of several nutrient transporters, antioxidant enzymes, and heat shock protein 70 (Hsp70) using quantitative real-time PCR. The results showed that addition of lead significantly decreased feed intake, body weight gain, and feed efficiency. Moreover, with the exception of GLUT5, the expression of all sugar, peptide, and amino acid transporters was significantly downregulated in the birds under Pb induced oxidative stress. Exposure to Pb also upregulated the antioxidant enzymes gene expression together with the downregulation of glutathione S-transferase and Hsp70. In conclusion, it appears that Pb-induced oxidative stress adversely suppresses feed efficiency and growth performance in chicken and the possible underlying mechanism for such phenomenon is downregulation of major nutrient transporter genes in small intestine.
Effects of ketamine and lidocaine on electroencephalographic (EEG) changes were evaluated in minimally anaesthetized dogs, subjected to electric stimulus. Six dogs were subjected to six treatments in a crossover design with a washout period of one week. Dogs were subjected to intravenous boluses of lidocaine 2 mg/kg, ketamine 3 mg/kg, meloxicam 0.2 mg/kg, morphine 0.2 mg/kg and loading doses of lidocaine 2 mg/kg followed by continuous rate infusion (CRI) of 50 and 100 mcg/kg/min, and ketamine 3 mg/kg followed by CRI of 10 and 50 mcg/kg/min. Electroencephalogram was recorded during electrical stimulation prior to any drug treatment (before treatment) and during electrical stimulation following treatment with the drugs (after treatment) under anaesthesia. Anaesthesia was induced with propofol and maintained with halothane at a stable concentration between 0.85 and 0.95%. Pretreatment median frequency was evidently increased (P < 0.05) for all treatment groups. Lidocaine, ketamine, and morphine depressed the median frequency resulting from the posttreatment stimulation. The depression of median frequency suggested evident antinociceptive effects of these treatments in dogs. It is therefore concluded that lidocaine and ketamine can be used in the analgesic protocol for the postoperative pain management in dogs.