Histological Studies on Heteracris littoralis (Rambur) Treated with Silica Nano-particles/ Challenger Formulation | Chapter 13 | Recent Advances in Biological Research Vol. 5

Aim: Testing Local diatomaceous earth (Silica nano-particles) and commercial pesticide (Challenger 36% SC) formulation against alfalfa grasshopper, Heteracris littoralis (Rambur, 1838) (Orthopetra: Acrididae) under laboratory conditions.

Study Design: Histological study for alimentary tract using light microscope.

Place and Duration of Study: Department of Pests and Plant Protection, National Research Centre, Egypt- 2016-2017.

Methodology: Fourth instar nymphs of H. littoralis were taken from laboratory culture reared on semi-artificial diet [1] for the experiments. The nymphs were fed on diet mixed with 1% concentration of Silica nano-particles/Challenger formulation. The tissue specimens of the alimentary canal were dissected in 0.9% NaCl solution and fixed in Bouin’s solution for 24 hours [2] then dehydrated in ascending alcoholic series and cleared in Xylen for few seconds, and then specimens were infiltrated in three changes of paraffin wax each lasted 20 minutes. With Ehrlich’s acid haematoxylin and alcoholic eosin. The stained sections were dehydrated, cleared and mounted using DPX for microscope examination.

Results: The Silica nano-particles induced great irregularity or deformity in the alimentary tract, that leading finally to death. All parts of the alimentary tract were affected by silica treatment (foregut, mid-gut and associated gastric caeca and hind-gut).

Author(s) Details

Aziza F. Sharaby
Department of Pests and Plant Protection, National Research Centre, Giza, Egypt.

Amany R. Ebeid
Department of Pests and Plant Protection, National Research Centre, Giza, Egypt.

Mohamed A. Gesraha
Department of Pests and Plant Protection, National Research Centre, Giza, Egypt.

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Bacteriuria in Pregnancy | Chapter 12 | Recent Advances in Biological Research Vol. 5

Urinary tract infection (UTI) is defined either as a lower tract (acute cystitis) or upper tract (acute pyelonephritis) infection are common in pregnant women. In the preantibiotic era, UTI caused significant morbidity. Hippocrates, writing about a disease that appears to have been acute cystitis, said that the illness could last for a year before either resolving or worsening to causing devastating mortality such as loss of fetus as a result of complications of pregnancy. UTI may be asymptomatic (subclinical infection) or symptomatic (disease). There is active responses to symptomatic urinary tract infection with the advent of antibiotics but asymptomatic UTI is still a source for concern because of the fact that no symptom and most dangerous among pregnant women.

Author(s) Details

Dr. Yunusa Thairu
Department of Microbiology and Parasitology, University of Abuja Teaching Hospital, Gwagwalada, Abuja, Nigeria.

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Optimization of Biodegradation of Phenol in a Refinery Effluent Treatment Facility | Chapter 11 | Recent Advances in Biological Research Vol. 5

Background: Regulatory agencies in Nigeria and all over the world demand that refinery wastewater (RWW) meet stipulated regulatory limits before discharge into the environment. Biodegradation of toxic hydrocarbon constituents of these effluents, such as phenol, has remained a challenge with regards to compliance with regulatory requirements.

Aims: This study investigated the effect of micronutrients and macronutrients on the biodegradation of phenol in RWW.

Methods: The micronutrients used in the study were CoSO4, MnSO4, ZnSO4 and CuSO4 while the macronutrients comprised urea and NPK. Range-finding and optimum concentration tests were performed for each of the nutrients. The experiment was carried out in a 3L Erlenmeyer’s flask incubated in a rotary shaker under experimentally determined optimum cultural conditions, using a fractional factorial design. Phenol concentration (mg/ml) was monitored daily throughout the experiment using spectrophotometric method.

Results: The result obtained from the study revealed that a combination of CoSO4, MnSO4 and NPK was most efficient in enhancing the degradation of phenol in the RWW. After three days of incubation, phenol concentration of 141.99mg/ml was reduced to 0.1mg/ml. This value is lower than the phenol concentration of 0.5mg/ml recommended for discharge of RWW into the environment. The degradation model derived from the study can be represented with the equation, y = 8.4998e-2.302x and R² = 0.961. 

Conclusion: This study has revealed that the combination of CoSO4, MnSO4 and NPK can efficiently enhance phenol degradation in RWW for effectual compliance with the regulatory discharge limit. This study has also demonstrated the positive effect of micronutrients and macronutrients on the biodegradation of refinery effluent. Amongst all the nutrients screened, the combination of NPK, MnSO4 and CaSO4 was most efficient in enhancing the biodegradation of phenol in RWW. This could be as a result of preferential assimilation of these specific nutrients by the microbial culture involved in the degradation. Operators of petroleum refineries in Nigeria should employ the synergistic effect of micronutrients and macronutrients in stimulating the microbial culture for optimal biodegradation of phenol in RWW as identified in this research.

Author(s) Details

Ifeyinwa Veronica Agu
Research and Development Division, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Eleme Petrochemical (Life Camp), P.M.B. 5373, Port Harcourt, Nigeria and Department of Microbiology, Faculty of Sciences, University of Port Harcourt, Choba, P.M.B. 5323, Port Harcourt, Rivers State, Nigeria.

Dr.  Abiye Anthony Ibiene
Department of Microbiology, Faculty of Sciences, University of Port Harcourt, Choba, P.M.B. 5323, Port Harcourt, Rivers State, Nigeria.

Professor Gideon Chijioke Okpokwasili
Department of Microbiology, Faculty of Sciences, University of Port Harcourt, Choba, P.M.B. 5323, Port Harcourt, Rivers State, Nigeria.

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The Utilization of Agro-Waste: A Nanobiotechnology Point of View | Chapter 10 | Recent Advances in Biological Research Vol. 5

Aims: To review the utilization of agro-waste in the eco-friendly synthesis of nanoparticles and their biomedical, catalytic and industrial applications.

Study Design: A review.

Place and Duration of Study: This review was carried out in the interim of three weeks exploiting all relevant data, literature and publications where necessary.

Methodology: Profound gathering of literatures/publications and reviews were employed with all carefulness and professional courtesy; enough useful information were gathered over time. The introduction emphasizes the dawn of science and technology, when great ideas were still latent later leading to the advent of history changing innovations like the completion of human genome and then the birth of nanotechnology. Although, nanotechnology had been known decades been popularized by Richard Feynman in his talks in the year 1959; and in this present dispensation, nanotechnology has been a solution to many intricate challenges/ threats in science and technology. Waste/agro-waste being one out of many threats affecting the eco system has triggered the attention of great minds to exploit fresh avenues in the area of nanotechnology/nanobiotechnology and as a result turning agro waste into readily available raw materials for eco-friendly synthesis of nanoparticles capable of biomedical and industrial properties.

Results: This review has provided information on the advancement of nanotechnology and areas where agro waste have played pivotal roles in the synthesis of eco-friendly nanoparticles. With relevant literature, journals and citations, this review has provided wealth of information on what could be done with agro waste within the confines of nanobiotechnology and beyond.

Conclusion: The advancement of science in the area of nanotechnology/nanobiotechnology has given birth to many innovations the world would have decried as useless centuries back, and now the world is a better place, all thanks to nanotechnology as agro wastes are no longer threats to the eco system.

Author(s) Details

Dr. Iyabo Christianah Oladipo
Department of Science Laboratory Technology, Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, Ogbomoso 210214, Oyo State, Nigeria.

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Escamoles, Ant Eggs (Liometopum apiculatum M.): An Underutilized Food | Chapter 09 | Recent Advances in Biological Research Vol. 5

Aims: To assess, Protein, Amino Acids, Lipids, fat-soluble vitamins A and E, Minerals, Fiber and Soluble Carbohydrates in Escamoles and inform the population about the benefits the intake of these edible insects may provide for human health.

Study Design: A combined protocol with both sampling and analytical procedures was used.

Place and Analysis: Escamoles were collected from different locations such as: El cardonal, Actopan, Santiago Anaya, Tulancalco, Huichapan, Apan, Tulancingo and Santuario, in spring (2014). Nutrient content analysis was performed according to AOAC methods and High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC).

Methodology: Sample: Conventional sampling was performed during the second week of March, 2014. Escamoles analysis: Macronutrient and energy content in escamoles was determined by individually analyzing macro and micro nutrients according to AOAC methods.

Results: The analysis showed that Escamoles contain: Proteins, 43.06 g/100 g; Minerals, 6.78 g/100 g; Fiber, 1.15 g/100 g; Soluble Carbohydrates, 18.74 g/100 g; Lipids, 34.96 g/100 g; Vitamin A, Retinol, 0.3024 mg /100 g and Vitamin E, α-tocopherol, 3.29 mg/100 g.

Conclusion: Escamoles are an additional source of nutrients that are underutilized due to the lack of knowledge regarding its nutritional composition, so it is important to increase the amount of information about escamoles and the health benefits that could be obtained from their consumption.

Author(s) Details

Dr. V. Melo-Ruiz
Departamento de Sistemas Biológicos, Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana, Unidad Xochimilco, Mexico.

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Buddleja Species Distributed in Mexico against Inflammatory Diseases, Their Therapeutic Activities, Secondary Metabolites and Biotechnology | Chapter 08 | Recent Advances in Biological Research Vol. 5

B. americana, B. cordata, B. parviflora, B. perfoliata, B. scordioides and B. sessiliflora, belonging to Buddleja Genus, are species distributed in Mexico reported in folk medicine to treat ills related to inflammatory processes. For some of them, this ethnopharmacological uses have been validated by scientific studies. Their phytochemistry has been related for their medicinal properties, being mainly iridoids, flavonoids and phenylethanoids because all of them are secondary metabolites credited with anti-inflammatory biological activity. Particularly, in folk medicine, those plants showing high concentrations of verbascoside secondary metabolite have been traditionally used to treat inflammation. In B. cordata, a cell culture has been developed since plant cell and tissue culture is a biotechnological tool that allows producing bioactive secondary metabolites in high concentrations as an alternative and sustainable form different to extraction from whole wild plants; meantime this protects wild medicinal plants from excessive use and collects. This cell culture produced verbascoside in a higher concentration than whole wild plant and the methanolic extract obtained from the cells demonstrated to be a satisfying anti-inflammatory agent on in vivo pre-clinical studies of acute and chronic inflammation, due to it modulates the production of interleukins expressed during an inflammatory process, lymphocytes tissue concentrations, decrease oxidative stress and leukocyte infiltration. New scientific studies should be done in those Buddleja species distributed in Mexico that have not credited its anti-inflammatory ethnomedicinal effect as well as to start on developing works to establish plant cell and tissue cultures. Moreover, new works should be continued about biotechnological advances on B. cordata. The aim of this work is to review the therapeutic activities, secondary metabolites and biotechnology advances of Buddleja species distributed in Mexico used against inflammatory diseases.

Author(s) Details

María Elena Estrada-Zúñiga
Centro de Investigación en Recursos Bióticos, Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad Autónoma del Estado de México, Carretera Toluca-Ixtlahuaca Km 14.5, San Cayetano CP 50295, Toluca, Estado de México, México.

Gabriel Alfonso Gutiérrez-Rebolledo
Departamento de Biotecnología, Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana-Iztapalapa, San Rafael Atlixco No. 186, Col. Vicentina CP 09340, México D.F., México.

Aurelio Nieto-Trujillo
Departamento de Biotecnología, Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana-Iztapalapa, San Rafael Atlixco No. 186, Col. Vicentina CP 09340, México D.F., México.

Dr. Antonio Bernabé-Antonio
Departamento de Madera, Celulosa y Papel, Centro Universitario de Ciencias Exactas e Ingenierías, Universidad de Guadalajara, Km. 15.5. Carretera Guadalajara-Nogales, Col. Las Agujas, CP 45010, Zapopan, Jalisco, México.

Francisco Cruz Sosa
Departamento de Biotecnología, Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana-Iztapalapa, San Rafael Atlixco No. 186, Col. Vicentina CP 09340, México D.F., México.

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Structure, Expression and Functions of Bovine Alpha-Tocopherol Transfer Protein (α-TTP) | Chapter 07 | Recent Advances in Biological Research Vol. 5

α-tocopherol transfer protein (α-TTP) of bovine consists of 282 amino acids with 98% and 83% identities to sheep and rat orthologs, respectively. Bovine α-TTP has an additional 5 amino acids (GEEVT) at the C terminus, which rat, human, mouse α-TTPs do not have. The Blast research suggested that the C-terminal sequences of α-TTP are specific for Cetartiodactyla animals. Bovine α-TTP mRNA and protein were expressed most strongly in liver, and also in lung, whereas expression of α-TTP mRNA and protein are reported to be very weak or absent in human and rodent lungs. In the lung, immunostaining suggested that α-TTP is expressed specifically in alveolar walls, which consists of alveolar cells, epithelial cells of small bronchi, and endothelial cells of pulmonary blood vessels. These results suggest that, in the lung, α-TTP is involved in supplying vitamin E to alveolar surfactant in order to protect the lung tissue from oxidative stress, and that this role may be more important in bovines than in other mammals.

Author(s) Details

Dr. Yoshitomo Taguchi
Department of Genetic Engineering, Faculty of Biology-Oriented Science and Technology, Kindai University, Wakayama 649-6493, Japan.

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Phytochemical and Antimicrobial Evaluation of the Essential Oil of Croatian Salvia brachyodon Vandas | Chapter 06 | Recent Advances in Biological Research Vol. 5

This study was designed to evaluate the phytochemical profile and the antimicrobial potential of the essential oil of Salvia brachyodon Vandas growing wild in Croatia. The emergence of multidrug resistant bacteria has become a serious threat to public health that has prompted research to the discovery and development of new active agents capable of partly or completely suppressing bacterial growth. Recently, a class of biological active compounds that has been attracting increased attention in drug discovery is the plant based derivatives. Many plants produce special biomolecules to protect themselves according to a stress or infection caused by microorganisms. Plants produce a broad assortment of secondary metabolites, including tannins, terpenoids, alkaloids, polyphenols and favonoids, which have been found in vitro to have antimicrobial properties against both Gram- positive and Gram- negative bacteria. Essential oils (EOs) are secondary metabolites, and are important for plant defense mechanism hence, they have various medicinal properties including antimicrobial activity. Natural products isolated from Salvia spp. have long been used in traditional medicine to treat several microbial afflictions, but considering the high number of species of this genus, the antimicrobial properties of all of them is not well known. Short tooth sage (S. brachyodon Vandas), an endemic species that grows in the south east areas of the Adriatic coast in Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Montenegro. It is a perennial plant that grows up to 70-80 cm in height and flowers from July to September. The phytochemical components of the essential oil were identified by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) analysis. The antimicrobial activity was assessed against a panel of representative Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria as well as fungi. The antimicrobial activities of the oil against pathogenic microorganisms were determined by using agar disc diffusion and broth microdilution methods. From the thirty-eight identified constituents representing 95.7% of the oil, 1,8-cineole (16.7%), β-pinene (19.7%) and α-pinene (7.6%), were the major components. The levels of oxygenated monoterpenes such as camphor (5.6%), borneol (4.2%), myrtenol (2.4 %) and terpinen-4-ol were significant. Other important compounds were sesquiterpenes hydrocarbons β-caryophyllene (6.6%), α-humulene (4.9%), viridiflorol (3.0%), spathulenol (2.9%) and aromadendrene. Preliminary antimicrobial screening revealed that the oil exhibited a very interesting antimicrobial profile. The oil exhibited moderate in vitro antibacterial activity after it was tested against twenty pathogenic bacteria and fungal strains, but high antimicrobial activity observed against medically important pathogens such as E. coli O157:H7, Listeria monocytogenes and Candida albicans. Results presented here may suggest that the essential oil of S. brachyodon possess antimicrobial properties, and is, therefore, a potential source of antimicrobial ingredient in food and pharmaceutical industry. The obtained results are preliminary and a further research is needed in order to obtain information regarding the practical effectiveness of essential oil to prevent the growth of foodborne and spoilage microbes under specific application conditions.

Author(s) Details

Dr. M. Skočibušić
Faculty of Science, University of Split, Croatia.

Mrs. S. Lacić
Faculty of Science, University of Split, Croatia.

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Immune Response of Broiler Chicks to Newcastle Disease Vaccine (LaSota), by Different Routes | Chapter 05 | Recent Advances in Biological Research Vol. 5

Aims: This work was undertaken to study the immune response of broiler chicks to LaSota vaccine by using different routes of administration.

Study Design: The design used was a completely randomized design.

Place and Duration of Study: The study was carried out at the Poultry Unit of the Kogi State University Teaching and Research Farm Anyigba, Kogi State, Nigeria. It lasted for 5 weeks.

Methodology: One-hundred-day old broiler chicks were grouped into 4 of 25 chicks each (A, B, C and D). In the 3rd week of life, the groups were vaccinated with LaSota by intraocular (i/o), intramuscular (i/m) and oral (per os) routes respectively while Group D served as the unvaccinated control group. Five chicks from each group were randomly selected and bled at 2, 3, 4 and 5 weeks post LaSota vaccination. Their sera were used for Haemagglutination Inhibition (HI) test.

Results: All the routes used produced high levels of Haemagglutination Inhibition (HI) antibody titres two weeks post vaccination. Immunity fell below protective level after 5 weeks post vaccination.

Conclusion: All the routes in this study were immunogenic and vaccination failure may not necessarily be due to the route of administration of vaccine.

Author(s) Details

Mary Ekundayo Sanda
Department of Veterinary Medicine, Michael Okpara University of Agriculture, Umudike, Nigeria.

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Ashwagandha and Its Active Ingredient, Withanolide A, Increase Activation of the Phosphatidylinositol 3’ Kinase/Akt Cascade in Hippocampal Neurons | Chapter 04 | Recent Advances in Biological Research Vol. 5

Aims: To determine if whether, in a hippocampal neuron culture model subjected to nutrient deprivation stress (simulating degenerative disease state), Ashwagandha and/or two of its putative active ingredients, withanolide A or withaferin A, affect any of the following: neurite outgrowth, neuronal survival, activation of the pro-survival PI-3K/Akt and MAPK cascades, phosphorylation of CREB and expression of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF).

Study Design: To primary rat embryonic hippocampal neurons in culture, half of which were subjected to nutrient deprivation stress, inhibitors of the PI-3K/Akt and MAPK cascade (LY294002 and PD98059, respectively) were applied, followed by Ashwagandha, withanolide A or withaferin A.

Methodology: Neuronal survival was determined by using fluorescently labeled markers for live vs dead cells and by lactate dehydrogenase assay. Average neurite length was measured under phase-contrast microscopy. And intracellular signal transduction activity was determined by Western blotting.

Results: Ashwagandha increased average neurite length. Ashwagandha, withanolide A and withaferin A all increased neuron survival in nutrient deprived conditions. Ashwagandha and withanolide A increased phosphorylation of Akt, but not MAPK, in both nutrient-adequate and nutrient-deprived conditions. Withaferin A increased BDNF expression under nutrient-deprived conditions, but decreased BDNF expression under adequate nutrient conditions; withaferin A still activated Akt under both types of nutrient conditions.

Conclusion: Using our model of nutrient deprivation stress, we showed that withaferin A helps cells adapt to stressful conditions, such as by increasing expression of BDNF, while withanolide A, continues to maintain cell survival and neural protection by increasing baseline levels of PI-3K/Akt. Our results are in agreement with extant literature on the effects of Ashwagandha or withaferin A on disease, such as cancer.

Author(s) Details

Michael Chen
Department  of Biological Sciences, California State University, Los Angeles, 5151 State University Dr., Los Angeles, CA  90032, USA.

Amelia Russo-Neustadt
Department  of Biological Sciences, California State University, Los Angeles, 5151 State University Dr., Los Angeles, CA  90032, USA.

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