Excellence in Research and Innovation for Humanity

International Science Index

Commenced in January 1999 Frequency: Monthly Edition: International Paper Count: 17

Biological, Biomolecular, Agricultural, Food and Biotechnological Engineering

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  • 17
    Continuum-Based Modelling Approaches for Cell Mechanics
    The quantitative study of cell mechanics is of paramount interest, since it regulates the behaviour of the living cells in response to the myriad of extracellular and intracellular mechanical stimuli. The novel experimental techniques together with robust computational approaches have given rise to new theories and models, which describe cell mechanics as combination of biomechanical and biochemical processes. This review paper encapsulates the existing continuum-based computational approaches that have been developed for interpreting the mechanical responses of living cells under different loading and boundary conditions. The salient features and drawbacks of each model are discussed from both structural and biological points of view. This discussion can contribute to the development of even more precise and realistic computational models of cell mechanics based on continuum approaches or on their combination with microstructural approaches, which in turn may provide a better understanding of mechanotransduction in living cells.
    Selected Ethnomedicinal Plants of Northern Surigao Del Sur: Their Antioxidant Activities in Terms of Total Phenolics, ABTS Radical Cation Decolorization Power, and Ferric Reducing Ability
    Plants can contain a wide variety of substances with antioxidative properties which are associated with important health benefits. These positive health effects are of great importance at a time when the environment is laden with many toxic substances. Five selected herbal plants namely, Mimosa pudica, Phyllanthus niruri, Ceiba pentandra, Eleusine polydactyla and Trema amboinensi, were chosen for the experiment to investigate their total phenolics content and antioxidant activities using ABTS radical cation decolorization power, and ferric reducing antioxidant power. The total phenolic content of each herbal plants ranges from 0.84 to 42.59 mg gallic acid equivalent/g. The antioxidant activity in the ABTS radical cation decolorization power varies from 0.005 to 0.362 mg trolox equivalent/g and the FRAP ranges from 0.30 to 28.42 mg gallic acid equivalent/g. Among the five medicinal plants, Mimosa pudica has been an excellent performer in terms of the 3 parameters measured; it is followed by Phyllanthus niruri. The 5 herbal plants do not have equivalent antioxidant power. The relative high values for M. pudica and P. niruri supports the medicinal value of both plants. The total phenolics, ABTS and FRAP correlate strongly with one another.
    Rheological Properties of Dough and Sensory Quality of Crackers with Dietary Fibers
    The possibility of application the dietary fibers in production of crackers was observed in this work, as well as their influence on rheological and textural properties on the dough for crackers and influence on sensory properties of obtained crackers. Three different dietary fibers, oat, potato and pea fibers, replaced 10% of wheat flour. Long fermentation process and baking test method were used for crackers production. The changes of dough for crackers were observed by rheological methods of determination the viscoelastic dough properties and by textural measurements. Sensory quality of obtained crackers was described using quantity descriptive method (QDA) by trained members of descriptive panel. Additional analysis of crackers surface was performed by videometer. Based on rheological determination, viscoelastic properties of dough for crackers were reduced by application of dietary fibers. Manipulation of dough with 10% of potato fiber was disabled, thus the recipe modification included increase in water content at 35%. Dough compliance to constant stress for samples with dietary fibers decreased, due to more rigid and stiffer dough consistency compared to control sample. Also, hardness of dough for these samples increased and dough extensibility decreased. Sensory properties of final products, crackers, were reduced compared to control sample. Application of dietary fibers affected mostly hardness, structure and crispness of the crackers. Observed crackers were low marked for flavor and taste, due to influence of fibers specific aroma. The sample with 10% of potato fibers and increased water content was the most adaptable to applied stresses and to production process. Also this sample was close to control sample without dietary fibers by evaluation of sensory properties and by results of videometer method.
    Investigation of Genetic Variation for Agronomic Traits among the Recombinant Inbred Lines of Wheat from the Norstar × Zagross Cross under Water Stress Condition
    Determination of genetic variation is useful for plant breeding and hence production of more efficient plant species under different conditions, like drought stress. In this study a sample of 28 recombinant inbred lines (RILs) of wheat developed from the cross of Norstar and Zagross varieties, together with their parents, were evaluated for two years (2010-2012) under normal and water stress conditions using split plot design with three replications. Main plots included two irrigation treatments of 70 and 140 mm evaporation from Class A pan and sub-plots consisted of 30 genotypes. The effect of genotypes and interaction of genotypes with years and water regimes were significant for all characters. Significant genotypic effect implies the existence of genetic variation among the lines under study. Heritability estimates were high for 1000 grain weight (0.87). Biomass and grain yield showed the lowest heritability values (0.42 and 0.50, respectively). Highest genotypic and phenotypic coefficients of variation (GCV and PCV) belonged to harvest index. Moderate genetic advance for most of the traits suggested the feasibility of selection among the RILs under investigation. Some RILs were higher yielding than either parent at both environments.
    Potential of γ-Polyglutamic Acid for Cadmium Toxicity Alleviation in Rice
    Cadmium (II) (Cd) is one of the major toxic elemental pollutants, which is hazardous for humans, animals and plants. γ- Polyglutamic acid (γ-PGA) is an extracellular biopolymer produced by several species of Bacillus which has been reported to be an effective biosorbent for metal ions. The effect of γ-PGA on growth of rice grown under laboratory conditions was investigated. Rice seeds were germinated and then grown at 30±1°C on filter paper soaked with Cd solution and γ-PGA for 7 days. The result showed that Cd significantly inhibited the growth of roots, shoots by reducing root, and shoot lengths. Fresh and dry weights also decreased compared with control; however, the addition of 500 mg·L-1 γ-PGA alleviated rice seedlings from the adverse effects of Cd. The analysis of physiological traits revealed that Cd caused a decrease in the total chlorophyll and soluble protein contents and amylase activities in all treatments. The Cd content in seedling tissues increased for the Cd 250 μM treatment (P
    Eco-Agriculture for Effective Solid Waste Management in Minna, Nigeria
    The increasing volume of solid waste generated, collected and disposed daily complicate adequate management of solid waste by relevant agency like Niger State Environmental Protection Agency (NISEPA). In addition, the impacts of solid waste on the natural environment and human livelihood require identification of cost-effective ways for sustainable municipal waste management in Nigeria. These signal the need for identifying environment-friendly initiative and local solution to address the problem of municipal solid waste. A research field was secured at Pago, Minna, Niger State which is located in the guinea savanna belt of Nigeria, within longitude 60 361 4311 - 4511 and latitude 90 291 37.6111 - .6211 N. Poultry droppings, decomposed household waste manure and NPK treatments were used. The experimental field was divided into three replications and four (4) treatments on each replication making a total of twelve (12) plots. The treatments were allotted using Randomized Complete Block Design (RCBD) and Data collected was analyzed using SPSS software and RCBD. The result depicts variation in plant height and number of leaves at 50% flowering; Poultry dropping records the highest height while the number of leaves for waste manure competes fairly well with NPK treatment. Similarly, the varying treatments significantly increase vegetable yield, as the control (non-treatment) records the least yield for the three vegetable samples. Adoption of this organic manure for cultivation does not only enhance environment quality and attainment of food security but will contribute to local economic development, poverty alleviation as well as social inclusion.
    Bioconversion of Oranges Wastes for Pectinase Production Using Aspergillus niger under Solid State Fermentation

    The influence of cultivation factors such as content of ammonium sulfate, glucose and water in the culture medium and particle size of dry orange waste, on their bioconversion for pectinase production was studied using complete factorial design. A polygalacturonase (PG) was isolated using ion exchange chromatography under gradient elution 0-0,5 m/l NaCl (column equilibrate with acetate buffer pH 4,5), subsequently by sephadex G75 column chromatography was applied and the molecular weight was obtained about 51,28 KDa. Purified PG enzyme exhibits a pH and temperature optima of activity at 5 and 35°C respectively. Treatment of apple juice by purified enzyme extract yielded a clear juice, which was competitive with juice yielded by pure Sigma Aldrich Aspergillus niger enzyme.

    Assessment of Drought Tolerance Maize Hybrids at Grain Growth Stage in Mediterranean Area
    Drought is one of the most serious problems posing a grave threat to cereals production including maize. Maize improvement in drought-stress tolerance poses a great challenge as the global need for food and bio-energy increases. Thus, the current study was planned to explore the variations and determine the performance of target traits of maize hybrids at grain growth stage under drought conditions during 2014 under Adana, Mediterranean climate conditions, Turkey. Maize hybrids (Sancia, Indaco, 71May69, Aaccel, Calgary, 70May82, 72May80) were evaluated under (irrigated and water stress). Results revealed that, grain yield and yield traits had a negative effects because of water stress conditions compared with the normal irrigation. As well as, based on the result under normal irrigation, the maximum biological yield and harvest index were recorded. According to the differences among hybrids were found that, significant differences were observed among hybrids with respect to yield and yield traits under current research. Based on the results, grain weight had more effect on grain yield than grain number during grain filling growth stage under water stress conditions. In this concern, according to low drought susceptibility index (less grain yield losses), the hybrid (Indaco) was more stable in grain number and grain weight. Consequently, it may be concluded that this hybrid would be recommended for use in the future breeding programs for production of drought tolerant hybrids.
    Alleviation of Adverse Effects of Salt Stress on Soybean (Glycine max. L.) by Using Osmoprotectants and Organic Nutrients
    Salinity is one of the major factors limiting crop production in an arid environment. Despite its global importance soybean production suffer the problems of salinity stress causing damages at plant development. So it is implacable to either search for salinity enhancement of soybean plants. Therefore, in the current study we try to clarify the mechanism that might be involved in the ameliorating effects of osmo-protectants such as proline and glycine betaine as well as, compost application on soybean plants grown under salinity stress. The experiment was conducted under greenhouse conditions at the Graduate School of Biosphere Science Laboratory of Hiroshima University, Japan in 2011. The experiment was designed as a spilt-split plot based on randomized complete block design with four replications. The treatments could be summarized as follows; (i) salinity concentrations (0 and 15 mM), (ii) compost treatments (0 and 24 t ha-1) and (iii) the exogenous, proline and glycine betaine concentrations (0 mM and 25 mM) for each. Results indicated that salinity stress induced reduction in growth and physiological aspects (dry weight per plant, chlorophyll content, N and K+ content) of soybean plant compared with those of the unstressed plants. On the other hand, salinity stress led to increases in the electrolyte leakage ratio, Na and proline contents. Special attention was paid to, the tolerance against salt stress was observed, the improvement of salt tolerance resulted from proline, glycine betaine and compost were accompanied with improved K+, and proline accumulation. While, significantly decreased electrolyte leakage ratio and Na+ content. These results clearly demonstrate that harmful effect of salinity could reduce on growth aspects of soybean. Consequently, exogenous osmoprotectants combine with compost will effectively solve seasonal salinity stress problem and are a good strategy to increase salinity resistance of soybean in the drylands.
    The Influence of Forest Management Histories on Dead Wood and Habitat Trees in the Old Growth Forest in Northern Iran

    Dead wood and habitat tree such as fallen logs, snags, stumps and cracks and loos bark etc. are regarded as an important ecological component of forests on which many forest dwelling species depend on presence of them within forest ecosystems. Meanwhile its relation to management history in Caspian forest has gone unreported. The aim of research was to compare the amounts of dead wood and habitat trees in the forests with historically different intensities of management, including: forests with the long term implication of management (PS), the short term implication of management (NS) which were compared with semi virgin forest (GS). The number of 405 individual dead and habitat trees were recorded and measured at 109 sampling locations. ANOVA revealed volume of dead tree in the form and decay classes significantly differ within sites and dead volume in the semi virgin forest significantly higher than managed sites. Comparing the amount of dead and habitat tree in three sites showed that, dead tree volume related with management history and significantly differ in three study sites. Meanwhile, frequency of habitat trees was significantly different within sites. The highest amount of habitat trees including cavities, cracks and loose bark and fork split trees was recorded in virgin site and lowest recorded in the sites with the long term implication of management. It can be concluded that forest management cause reduction of the amount of dead and habitat tree specially in a large size, thus managing this forest according to ecological sustainable principles require a commitment to maintaining stand structure that allow, continued generation of dead trees in a full range of size.

    Preliminary Dosimetric Evaluation of a New Therapeutic 177Lu Complex for Human Based on Biodistribution Data in Rats
    Abstract—[Tris (1,10-phenanthroline) lanthanum(III)] trithiocyanate is a new compound that has shown high ability for stopping the synthesis of DNA and also acting as a photosensitizer. Nowadays, the radiation dose assessment resource (RADAR) method is known as the most common method for absorbed dose calculation. 177Lu was produced by (n, gamma) reaction in a research reactor. 177Lu-PL3 was prepared in the optimized condition. The radiochemical yield was checked by ITLC method. The biodistribution of the complex was investigated by intravenously injection to wild-type rats via their tail veins. In this study, the absorbed dose of 177Lu-PL3 to human organs was estimated by RADAR method. 177Lu was prepared with a specific activity of 2.6-3 GBq.mg-1 and radionuclide purity of 99.98 %. Final preparation of the radiolabelled complex showed high radiochemical purity of > 99%. The results show that liver and spleen have received the highest absorbed dose of 1.051 and 0.441 mSv/MBq, respectively. The absorbed dose values for these two dose-limiting tissues suggest more biological studies special in tumor-bearing animals.
    Essential Micronutrient Biofortification of Sprouts Grown on Mineral Fortified Fiber Mats
    Diets high in processed foods have been found to lack essential micro-nutrients for optimum human development and overall health. Some micro-nutrients such as copper (Cu) have been found to enhance the inflammatory response through its oxidative functions, thereby having a role in cardiovascular disease, metabolic syndrome, diabetes and related complications. This research study was designed to determine if food crops could be bio-fortified with micro-nutrients by growing sprouts on mineral fortified fiber mats. In the feasibility study described in this contribution, recycled cellulose fibers and clay, saturated with either micro-nutrient copper ions or copper nanoparticles, were converted to a novel mineral-cellulose fiber carrier of essential micro-nutrient and of antimicrobial properties. Seeds of Medicago sativa (alfalfa), purchased from a commercial, organic supplier were germinated on engineered cellulose fiber mats. After the appearance of the first leaves, the sprouts were dehydrated and analyzed for Cu content. Nutrient analysis showed ~2 increase in Cu of the sprouts grown on the fiber mats with copper particles, and ~4 increase on mats with ionic copper as compared to the control samples. This study illustrates the potential for the use of engineered mats as a viable way to increase the micro-nutrient composition of locally-grown food crops and the need for additional research to determine the uptake, nutritional implications and risks of micro-nutrient bio-fortification.
    Diversification of Sweet Potato Blends and Utilization for Malnutrition and Poverty Alleviation
    Value addition to agricultural produce is of possible potential in reducing poverty, improving food security and malnutrition, therefore the need to develop small and microenterprises of sweet potato production. A study was carried out in Nigeria to determine the acceptability of blends sweet potato (Ipomea batatas) and commodities yellow maize (Zea mays), millet (Pennisetum glaucum), soybean (Glycine max), bambara groundnut (Vigna subterranean), guinea corn (Sorghum vulgare), wheat (Triticum aestivum), and roselle (Hibiscus sabdariffa) through sensory evaluation. Sweet potato (Ipomea batatas) roots were processed using two methods: oven and sun drying. The blends were also assessed in terms of functional, chemical and color properties. Most acceptable blends include BAW (80:20 of sweet potato/wheat), BBC (80:20 of sweet potato/guinea corn), AAB (60:40 of sweet potato/guinea corn), YTE (100% soybean), TYG (100% sweet potato), KTN (100% wheat flour), XGP (80:20 of sweet potato/soybean), XAX (60:40 of sweet potato/wheat), LSS (100% Roselle), CHK (100% Guinea corn), and ABC (60:40% of sweet potato/ yellow maize). In addition, carried out chemical analysis revealed that sweet potato has high percentage of vitamins A and C, potassium (K), manganese (Mn), calcium (Ca), magnesium (Mg) and iron (Fe) and fibre content. There is also an increase of vitamin A and Iron in the blended products.
    Evaluation of Bakery Products Made from Barley-Gelatinized Corn Flour and Wheat-Defatted Rice Bran Flour Composites
    In the present research, whole meal barley flour (WBF) was supplemented with gelatinized corn flour (GCF) in 0 and 30%. Whole meal wheat flour (WWF) was mixed with defatted rice bran (DRB) to produce 0, 20, 25, and 30% replacement levels. Rheological properties of dough were studied. Thermal properties and starch crystallinity of flours were evaluated. Flat bread, balady bread and pie were prepared from the different flour blends. The different bakeries were sensory evaluated. Color of raw materials and crust of bakery products were determined. Nutrients contents of raw flours and food products were assessed. Results showed that addition of GCF to WBF increased the viscosity and falling number of the produced dough. Water absorption, dough development time and dough stability increased with increasing the level of DRB in dough while, weakening and mixing tolerance index decreased. Extensibility and energy decreased, while, resistance to extension increased as DRB level increased. Gelatinized temperature of WWF, WBF, GCF, and DRB were 13.26, 35.09, 28.33, and 39.63, respectively. Starch crystallinity was affected when DRB was added to WWF. The highest protein content was present in balady bread made from 70% WWF and 30% DRB. The highest calcium, phosphorus, and potassium levels were present in products made from 100% WBF. Sensory attributes of the products were slightly affected by adding DRB and GCF. Conclusion: Addition of DRB or GCF to WWF or WBF, respectively affect the physical, chemical, rheological and sensory properties of balady bread, flat bread, and pie while improved their nutritive values.
    Development of an Adhesive from Prosopis africana Seed Endosperm (Okpeyi)
    This research work is an experimental study, through development of an adhesive from Prosopis africana endosperm. The prosopis seed for this work were obtained from Enugu State in the South East part of Nigeria. The seeds were prepared by separating the endosperm from the seed coat and cotyledon. Three methods were used to separate them, which are acidic method, roasting method and boiling method. 20g of seed were treated with different concentrations (25, 40, 55, 70, and 85% w/w) at 100°C and constant time (30 minutes), under continuous stirring with magnetic stirrer. Also 20g of seed were treated with sulphuric acid of concentrations 40% w/w at 100°C with different time (10, 15, 20, 25, 30 minutes), under continuous stirring with magnetic stirrer. Finally, 20g of seed were treated with sulphuric acid of concentrations 40% w/w at different temperature (20°C, 40°C, 60°C, 80°C, and 100°C) with constant time (30 minutes), under continuous stirring with magnetic stirrer. The whole endosperm extracted was adhesive. The physical properties of the adhesive were determined (appearance, odour, taste, solubility, pH, size, and binding strength). The percentage of the adhesive yield makes the commercialization of the seed in Nigeria possible and profitable. The very high viscosity attained at low concentrations makes prosopis adhesive an excellent thickener in the food industry.
    Eucalyptus camendulensis and Its Drying Effect on Water and Essential Oil Content

    Medicinal and aromatic plants are promising and are characterized by the biosynthesis of odorous molecules that make up the so-called essential oils (EO), which have long been known for their antiseptic and therapeutic activity in folk medicine. Essential oils have many therapeutic properties. In herbal medicine, they are used for their antiseptic properties against infectious diseases of fungal origin, against dermatophytes, those of bacterial origin. The objective of this study was to evaluate the influence of drying in the shade on the water content and on the content of essential oils extracted from leaves of Eucalyptus camendulensis for better quality control of medicinal and aromatic plants. The water content of the Eucalyptus camendulensis plant material decreases during the drying process. It decreased from 100% to 0.006% for the drying in the shade after ten days. The moisture content is practically constant at the end of the drying period. The drying in the shade increases the concentration of essential oils of Eucalyptus camendulensis. When the leaves of Eucalyptus camendulensis plant are in the shade, the maximum of the essential oil content was obtained on the eighth day, the recorded value was 1.43% ± 0.01%. Beyond these periods, the content continuously drop in before stabilizing. The optimum drying time is between 6 and 9 days.

    The Incidence of Obesity among Adult Women in Pekanbaru City, Indonesia, Related to High Fat Consumption, Stress Level, and Physical Activity

    Background: Obesity has been recognized as a global health problem. Individuals classified as overweight and obese are increasing at an alarming rate. This condition is associated with psychological and physiological problems. as a person reaches adulthood, somatic growth ceases. At this stage, the human body has developed fully, to a stable state. As the capital of Riau Province in Indonesia, Pekanbaru is dominated by Malay ethnic population habitually consuming cholesterol-rich fatty foods as a daily menu, a trigger to the onset of obesity resulting in high prevalence of degenerative diseases. Research objectives: The aim of this study is elaborating the relationship between high-fat consumption pattern, stress level, physical activity and the incidence of obesity in adult women in Pekanbaru city. Research Methods: Among the combined research methods applied in this study, the first stage is quantitative observational, analytical cross-sectional research design with adult women aged 20-40 living in Pekanbaru city. The sample consists of 200 women with BMI≥25. Sample data is processed with univariate, bivariate (correlation and simple linear regression) and multivariate (multiple linear regression) analysis. The second phase is qualitative descriptive study purposive sampling by in-depth interviews. six participants withdrew from the study. Results: According to the results of the bivariate analysis, there are relationships between the incidence of obesity and the pattern of high fat foods consumption (energy intake (p≤0.000; r = 0.536), protein intake (p≤0.000; r=0.307), fat intake (p≤0.000; r=0.416), carbohydrate intake (p≤0.000; r=0.430), frequency of fatty food consumption (p≤0.000; r=0.506) and frequency of viscera foods consumption (p≤0.000; r=0.535). There is a relationship between physical activity and incidence of obesity (p≤0.000; r=-0.631). However, there is no relationship between the level of stress (p=0.741; r=0.019-) and the incidence of obesity. Physical activity is a predominant factor in the incidence of obesity in adult women in Pekanbaru city. Conclusion: There are relationships between high-fat food consumption pattern, physical activity and the incidence of obesity in Pekanbaru city whereas physical activity is a predominant factor in the occurrence of obesity, supported by the unchangeable pattern of high-fat foods consumption.