Excellence in Research and Innovation for Humanity

International Science Index

Commenced in January 1999 Frequency: Monthly Edition: International Paper Count: 14

Biological, Biomolecular, Agricultural, Food and Biotechnological Engineering

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  • 14
    Evaluation of Sensory Attributes of Snack from Maize-Moringa Seed Flour Blends

    Healthy snack (cookie) was produced from corn flour and moringa seed flour blends. The samples were mixed in various proportions and analysed for proximate composition and functional characteristics. The healthy snack (cookies) was evaluated for sensory parameters of Colour, Crispness, Taste, Aroma and Overall Acceptability. The proximate analysis of the flour obtained from different proportion showed that proximate composition increased with increase in substitution level of moringa seed flour especially with protein, fat and crude fibre. The protein contents of samples range from 1.75 to 6.58, fat from 0.60 to 6.80, while fibre from 0.85 to 2.06. There was no significance difference in the functional properties of the blend when compared with 100% corn flour. Sensory evaluation results shows a significant difference in Colour, Taste, Crispness, Aroma and Overall Acceptability of healthy snack (cookies) sample from different blends at 5% significance level.

    The Phenolic Substances and Antioxidant Activity of White Saffron (Curcuma mangga Val.) as Affected by Blanching Methods

    Background and objectives: Most of the agricultural products are processed by blanching. Blanching can increase antioxidant activity in white saffron products. The objective of this research were to determine antioxidant activity, to identify, and to measure changes in phenolic substances of fresh and blanched white saffron rhizomes (Curcuma mangga Val.). Methods: White saffron rhizomes were peeled, washed and blanched in boiling water containing 0% or 0.05% citric acid solution for 5 and 10 minutes. Samples were extracted using methanol, rotaevaporated, and freezedried. Dried extract was determined antioxidant activity by DPPH method, identified and quantified for the phenolic substances by High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC) equipped with coloumn C18 and Photodiode-array detector (PAD). Result: This research showed that the quantity of the 6 phenolic substances identified in blanched white saffron in citric acid solution increased significantly compared to that of the non-blanched. Blanching white saffron in 0.05% citric acid media for 5 minutes increased its antioxidant activity, and total phenolic content. Conclusions: The identified phenolic substances of white saffron were Gallic Acid (GA), Catechin (C), Epicatechin (EC), Epigallocatechin (EGC), Epigallocatechingallat (EGCG) and Gallocatechingallat (GCG). The blanched white saffron contained C and EGCG significantly higher than that of fresh rhizomes.

    Impact of Interventions by Consortium for Improving Agriculture-based Livelihoods in Central Africa (CIALCA) on Food and Nutrition Security of Farmer Households

    Impact of adopting products promoted by the Consortium for Improving Agriculture-based livelihoods in Central Africa (CIALCA) on food and nutrition security was tested. Multi-stage sampling was used to select 7 project mandate areas, 5 villages/mandate area (stratified into action, satellite and control sites) and 913 households. Structured questionnaires were administered; analysis of impact based on comparison between stratums, differences in means tested by ANOVA and significance of difference obtained by Tukey's HSD multiple rank tests. Perception of adequate food sufficiency received a higher rating in action and satellite sites compared to control sites reason being improved agricultural technologies. For >60% of households, worsened food security was due to climatic conditions. Although a higher proportion of households in action and satellite was meeting calorie RDIs in DRC and Burundi the difference was insignificant from control sites. 53% of respondents in control sites indicated a decrease in intake of protein rich foods, this was significantly higher than the proportion in the action (46%) and satellite (41%) sites.

    Novel NMR-Technology to Assess Food Quality and Safety

    High Resolution NMR Spectroscopy offers unique screening capabilities for food quality and safety by combining non-targeted and targeted screening in one analysis.

    The objective is to demonstrate, that due to its extreme reproducibility NMR can detect smallest changes in concentrations of many components in a mixture, which is best monitored by statistical evaluation however also delivers reliable quantification results.

    The methodology typically uses a 400 MHz high resolution instrument under full automation after minimized sample preparation.

    For example one fruit juice analysis in a push button operation takes at maximum 15 minutes and delivers a multitude of results, which are automatically summarized in a PDF report.

    The method has been proven on fruit juices, where so far unknown frauds could be detected. In addition conventional targeted parameters are obtained in the same analysis. This technology has the advantage that NMR is completely quantitative and concentration calibration only has to be done once for all compounds. Since NMR is so reproducible, it is also transferable between different instruments (with same field strength) and laboratories. Based on strict SOP`s, statistical models developed once can be used on multiple instruments and strategies for compound identification and quantification are applicable as well across labs.

    Sensory Evaluation of Diversified Sweet Potato Drinks among Consumers: Implication for Malnutrition Reduction in Nigeria

    Diversification of the processing of crops is a very important way of reducing food insecurity, perishability of most perishable crops and generates verities. Sweet potato has been diversified in various ways by researchers through processing into different forms for consumption. The study considered diversifying the crop into different drinks by combining it with different high nutrient acceptable cereal. There was significant relationship between the educational background of the respondents and level of acceptability of the sweet potato drinks (χ 2 = 1.033 and P = 0.05). Interestingly, significant relationship existed between the most preferred sweet potato drink by the respondents and level of acceptability of the sweet potato drinks (r = 0.394, P = 0.031). The high level of acceptability of the drinks will lead to enhanced production of the crops required for the drinks that would assist in income generation and alleviating food and nutrition insecurity.

    Revision of Genus Polygonum L. s.l. in Flora of Armenia

    The account of genus Polygonum L. in "Flora of Armenia" was made more than five decades ago. After that many expeditions have been carried out in different regions of Armenia and a huge herbarium material has been collected. The genus included 5 sections with 20 species. Since then many authors accepted the sections as separate genera on the basis of anatomical, morphological, palynological and molecular data. According to the above mentioned it became clear, that the taxonomy of Armenian representatives of Polygonum s. l. also needs revision. New literature data and our investigations of live and herbarium material (ERE, LE) with specification of the morphological characters, distribution, ecology, flowering and fruiting terms brought us to conclusion, that genus Polygonum s. l. has to be split into 5 different genera (Aconogonon (Meisn.) Reichenb., Bistorta (L.) Scop., Fallopia Adans., Persicaria Mill., Polygonum L. s. s.). The number of species has been reduced to 16 species. For each genus new determination keys has been created. 

    Mathematical Modeling of Uncompetitive Inhibition of Bi-Substrate Enzymatic Reactions

    Currently, mathematical and computer modeling are widely used in different biological studies to predict or assess behavior of such a complex systems as a biological are. This study deals with mathematical and computer modeling of bi-substrate enzymatic reactions, which play an important role in different biochemical pathways. The main objective of this study is to represent the results from in silico investigation of bi-substrate enzymatic reactions in the presence of uncompetitive inhibitors, as well as to describe in details the inhibition effects. Four models of uncompetitive inhibition were designed using different software packages. Particularly, uncompetitive inhibitor to the first [ES1] and the second ([ES1S2]; [FS2]) enzyme-substrate complexes have been studied. The simulation, using the same kinetic parameters for all models allowed investigating the behavior of reactions as well as determined some interesting aspects concerning influence of different cases of uncompetitive inhibition. Besides, it has been shown that uncompetitive inhibitors exhibit specific selectivity depending on mechanism of bi-substrate enzymatic reaction. 

    Evaluation of SSR Markers Associated with High Oleic Acid in Sunflower

    Sunflower oil with high oleic acid content is most desirable because of its high oxidative stability. Screening sunflower of high oleic acid using conventional method is laborious and time consuming. Therefore, the use of molecular markers as a screening tool is promising. The objective of this research was to evaluate SSR primers for high oleic acid content in sunflower. Two sunflower lines, 5A and PI 649855 were used as the representative of low and high oleic acid sunflowers, respectively, and thirty seven SSR markers were used to identify oleic acid content trait. The results revealing 10 SSR primers showed polymorphic between high and low oleic acid lines and thus were informative. With these primers, therefore, it is possible to identify the genetic markers associated with high oleic acid trait in sunflower genotypes. 

    Improving Production Traits for El-Salam and Mandarah Chicken Strains by Crossing II-Estimation of Crossbreeding Effects on Egg Production and Egg Quality Traits

    A crossbreeding experiment was carried out between two Egyptian strains of chickens namely Mandarah (MM) and El-Salam (SS). The two purebred strains and their reciprocal crosses (MS and SM) were used to estimate the effect of crossing on egg laying and egg quality parameters, direct additive and maternal additive effects as well as heterosis and direct heterosis percentages for studied traits. Results revealed that SM cross recorded the highest significant averages for most of egg production traits including body weight at sexual maturity (BW1), egg numbers at first 90 days, 42 weeks and 65 weeks of age (EN1, EN2 and EN3; respectively), egg weight at 90 days, 42 weeks of age (EW1 and EW2), egg mass at 90 days, 42 weeks and 65 weeks of age (EM1, EM2 and EM3; respectively), feed conversion ratio to egg production at 90 days , 42 weeks and 65 weeks of age (FCR1, FCR2 and FCR3; respectively), fertility and commercial hatchability percentages. Moreover, SM line reached the age sexual maturity (ASM) and period to the first ten eggs (Pf10 egg) at earlier age than other lines. On the other hand, crossing did not well improve egg quality parameters. Estimates and percentages of direct additive effect (GI) were negative for most of the studied traits except for EN1, EN2, EN3, FCR3, fertility, scientific and commercial hatchability percentages that were positive. But Estimates and percentages of maternal heterosis (Gm) were positive for all the studied traits of egg production, except for BW2, BW3, ASM, Pf10, FCR1, FCR2, FCR3 and scientific hatchability that were negative. Also, positive estimates and percentages of heterosis were recorded for most of egg production and egg quality traits. It was concluded that using of SS strain as a sire line and MM strain as a dam line resulting in best new commercial egg line (SM) which is of great concern for poultry breeder in Egypt.

    Evaluation of Energy and Environmental Aspects of Reduced Tillage Systems Applied in Maize Cultivation

    In maize growing technologies, tillage technological operations are the most time-consuming and require the greatest fuel input. Substitution of conventional tillage, involving deep ploughing, by other reduced tillage methods can reduce technological production costs, diminish soil degradation and environmental pollution from greenhouse gas emissions, as well as improve economic competitiveness of agricultural produce.

    Experiments designed to assess energy and environmental aspects associated with different reduced tillage systems, applied in maize cultivation were conducted at Aleksandras Stulginskis University taking into account Lithuania’s economic and climate conditions. The study involved 5 tillage treatments: deep ploughing (DP, control), shallow ploughing (SP), deep cultivation (DC), shallow cultivation (SC) and no-tillage (NT).

    Our experimental evidence suggests that with the application of reduced tillage systems it is feasible to reduce fuel consumption by 13-58% and working time input by 8.4% to nearly 3-fold, to reduce the cost price of maize cultivation technological operations, decrease environmental pollution with CO2 gas by 30 to 146 kg ha-1, compared with the deep ploughing.

    Partial Purification of Cytotoxic Peptides against Gastric Cancer Cells from Protein Hydrolysate of Euphorbia hirta Linn.

    Protein hydrolysates prepared from a number of medicinal plants are promising sources of various bioactive peptides. In this work, proteins from dried whole plant of Euphorbia hirta Linn. were extracted and digested with pepsin for 12h. The hydrolysates of lesser than 3 KDa were fractionated by a cut-off membrane. The peptide hydrolysate was then purified by an anion-exchange chromatography on DEAE-Sephacel™ column and reverse-phase chromatography on Sep-pak C18 column, respectively. The cytotoxic effect of each peptide fraction against a gastric carcinoma cell line (KATO-III, ATCC No. HTB103) was investigated using colorimetric MTT viability assay. A human liver cell line (Chang Liver, CLS No. 300139) was used as a control normal cell line. Two purified peptide peaks, peak l and peak ll at 100µg peptides mL-1 affected cell viability of the gastric cancer cell lines to 63.85±4.94 and 66.92±6.46%, respectively. Our result showed for the first time that the peptide fractions derived from protein hydrolysate of Euphorbia hirta Linn. have anti-gastric cancer activity, which offers a potential novel and natural anti-gastric cancer remedy.

    Identification of Single Nucleotide Polymorphism in 5'-UTR of CYP11B1 Gene in Pakistani Sahiwal Cattle

    A major goal in animal genetics is to understand the role of common genetic variants in diseases susceptibility and production traits. Sahiwal cattle can be considered as a global animal genetic resource due to its relatively high milk producing ability, resistance against tropical diseases and heat tolerant. CYP11B1 gene provides instructions for making a mitochondrial enzyme called steroid 11-beta-hydroxylase. It catalyzes the 11deoxy-cortisol to cortisol and 11deoxycorticosterone to corticosterone in cattle. The bovine CYP11B1 gene is positioned on BTA14q12 comprises of eight introns and nine exons and protein is associated with mitochondrial epithelium. The present study was aimed to identify the single-nucleotide polymorphisms in CYP11B1 gene in Sahiwal cattle breed of Pakistan. Four polymorphic sites were identified in exon one of CYP11B1 gene through sequencing approach. Significant finding was the incidence of the C→T polymorphism in 5'-UTR, causing amino acid substitution from alanine to valine (A30V) in Sahiwal cattle breed. That Ala/Val polymorphism may serve as a powerful genetic tool for the development of DNA markers that can be used for the particular traits for different local cattle breeds.

    An Integrated Predictor for Cis-Regulatory Modules

    Various cis-regulatory module (CRM) predictors have been proposed in the last decade. Several well-established CRM predictors adopted different categories of prediction strategies, including window clustering, probabilistic modeling and phylogenetic footprinting. Appropriate integration of them has a potential to achieve high quality CRM prediction. This study analyzed four existing CRM predictors (ClusterBuster, MSCAN, CisModule and MultiModule) to seek a predictor combination that delivers a higher accuracy than individual CRM predictors. 465 CRMs across 140 Drosophila melanogaster genes from the RED fly database were used to evaluate the integrated CRM predictor proposed in this study. The results show that four predictor combinations achieved superior performance than the best individual CRM predictor.

    Toxic Effect of Sodium Nitrate on Germinating Seeds of Vigna radiata

    Sodium nitrate has been used industrially in a number of work fields ranging from agriculture to food industry. Sodium nitrate and nitrite are associated with a higher risk of cancer in human beings. In present study, the effect of sodium nitrate on germinating seeds was studied. Two different sets of ungerminated Vigna radiata seeds were taken. In one set Vigna radiata seeds were soaked in distilled water for 4 hours and they were allowed to germinate in distilled water (Control) and 0.1 to 1% and 10% concentrations of sodium nitrate (NaNo3). In soaked seed set, on 2nd day radical developed in control and 0.1 to 1% concentrations of sodium nitrate. Seeds size was enlarged in 1% and 10% concentrations of sodium nitrate. On 3rd day in 0.1% sodium nitrate length of the radicle was 7.5cm with one leaf let and control sample showed 9cm with one leaflet. On 5th day in 0.1% sodium nitrate length of the radicle was 10 cm with one leaf let and control sample showed 11.5cm with one leaflet. No radicle developed in 1 and 10% NaNo3 concentrations. On 10th day all plants including control were dead. More number of mitotic cells was observed in apical root meristems of control germinating seeds and less mitotic cells were observed in 0.1% NaNo3 germinating seeds. But cells were elongated in 0.9%NaNo3 concentration and particles are deposited in the cells and no mitotic cells were observed. In other sets, dry seeds were allowed to germinate in Distilled water (control) and in 0.1 to 1% and 10% concentrations of sodium nitrate. In dry seed set, on 2nd day radicle developed from control set. In 0.1 to 1% concentrations of sodium nitration seed enlarged in size but but not allowed germination. But in 10% NaNo3 seeds coat colour was changed from dark green to brown. On 3rd day the radicle was developed in 0.1% concentration of NaNo3. No growth of radicle was observed in 0.3 to 10% concentrations of NaNo3 but plumule was observed in control plant. Seed coat color was changed from dark green to brown in color in 1% and 10% NaNo3. On 5th day in control seeds the radicle growth was 11cm and 0.1% NaNo3 concentration was 1.3 cm. On 10th day all plants including control were dead. More number of mitotic cells was observed in apical root meristems of control germinating seeds and less mitotic cells were observed in 0.1% NaNo3 germinating seeds. At higher concentrations of NaNo3 allowed seed germination in soaked seeds but produced radicle decay. In comparison to it, in dry seed set, germination of seeds observed only in 0.1% NaNo3 concentration. The inhibitory effect of NaNo3 on seed germination is due to reduction of water imbibition and mitotic activity.