Remarks on Behavior of Horse Guard Wasps (Hymenoptera, Crabronidae, Bembicinae) and Interrupted Hematophagism of Horse Flies (Diptera, Tabanidae) | Chapter 06 | Recent Advances in Biological Research Vol. 6

During studies on tabanid fauna on Marambaia Island, Mangaratiba, Brazil, the authors captured 71specimens of two species of solitaire sand wasps hunting horseflies, Stictia punctata (Fabricius, 1775) and Stictia signata signata (Linnaeus, 1758). Wasps interact with horseflies demonstrating outstanding behavior, interrupting the hematophagism, which enhances tabanids ability to transmit pathogenic agents to natural hosts.

Author(s) Details

Ronald Rodrigues Guimaraes
Escola Nacional de Saude Publica Sergio Arouca, Centro de Educacao e Pesquisas em Medicina Ambiental, Brazil.

Ronald Rodrigues Guimaraes Junior
Estudante de graduacao em Análise de Sistemas, na Associacao Brasileira de Ensino Universitario, Nova Iguacu, RJ., Brazil.

Sandor Buys
Colecao Entomologica do Instituto Oswaldo Cruz, Brazil.

Harlan Ronald Rodrigues Storti
Graduado em Letras-Ingles pela Universidade Iguacu, professor de ingles na “Cultura Inglesa” e “Curso Tamandare”. Proficiencia em ingles no nivel Toefl, Brazil.

Roney Rodrigues Guimaraes
Universidade Estacio de Sa, Centro Universitario de Barra Mansa, Brazil.

Eduardo Dias Wermelinger
Escola Nacional de Saude Publica Sergio Arouca, Centro de Educacao e Pesquisas em Medicina Ambiental, Brazil.

Raimundo Wilson Carvalho
Escola Nacional de Saude Publica Sérgio Arouca, Centro de Educacao e Pesquisas em Medicina Ambiental, Brazil.

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Physicochemical Assessment of Vulnerability of the River Ebenyi in Eha-Amufu and Environs, Southeast Nigeria | Chapter 05 | Recent Advances in Biological Research Vol. 6

Aim: Physicochemical assessment of the surface water sourced from River Ebenyi and its tributaries in Eha-Amufu and environs, Isu-Uzo Local Government Area of Enugu State of Nigeria.

Place and Duration: Eha-Amufu and environs, Isu-Uzo Local Government Area of Enugu State of Nigeria May to July, 2017.

Study Design: Experimental design.

Methodology: Water samples were spatially collected along the river and stream channels in Eha-Amufu and the adjoining Ihenyi, Amaede, Mgbuji, Umuhu, Agamede and Odobudo villages. Parameters analysed include pH, dissolved oxygen (DO), biological oxygen demand (BOD), chemical oxygen demand (COD), Total hardness (TH), Lead (Pb), Copper (Cu), Cadmium (Cd), Chromium (Cr), Zinc (Zn), Nitrate, Phosphate, Chloride and Sulphate.

Results: The concentrations of Cd (0.02-0.05 mg/l) and Pb (0.37-0.77 mg/l) exceeded the maximum limit of the range of values considered as safe by the World Health Organisation (WHO). Conductivity (37.14 – 63.30 µs/cm), Total dissolved solids (TDS) (10.80 – 30.80 mg/l), Total suspended solids (TSS) (10.60 – 21.20 mg/l) and Total solid (TS) (20.60-41.00 mg/l) were within the lower limit of the permissible range of values. Chromium (0.26 ± 0.00 mg/l) exceeded the maximum permissible limit at Agamede village. Sulphate was statistical significantly higher (χ2 = 25.697, p < 0.001) relative to the spatial concentrations of nitrate (4.28 – 11.18 mg/l), sulphate (13.68 – 25.23 mg/l), phosphate (0.00 – 0.28 mg/l) and chloride (9.11 – 15.50 mg/l) in the area.

Conclusions: The baseline results obtained from this study with regards to Cd, Cr and Pb demands that effective health education programme should be organised to emphasize on the effect of anthropogenic activities that releases pollutants. However, long term sampling covering all the months of the year is needed in order to confirm the reproducibility of our results. Variations in the physicochemical parameters of the surface water sourced from River Ebenyi and its tributaries in Eha-Amufu and environs are indicative of the influence of the anthropogenic activities. The baseline results obtained from this study with regards to Cd, Cr and Pb demands that effective health education programme should be organised to emphasize on the effect of anthropogenic activities that releases pollutants. However, long term sampling covering all the months of the year is needed in order to confirm the reproducibility of our results.

Author(s) Details

E. I. Nnamonu
Department of Biology, Federal College of Education, Eha-Amufu, Enugu State, Nigeria.

E. E. Nkitnam
Department of Geology and Geophysics, Federal University, Ndufu-AlikeIkwo, Ebonyi State, Nigeria.

F. J. Ugwu
Department of Biology, Federal College of Education, Eha-Amufu, Enugu State, Nigeria.

O. C. Ejilibe
Department of Biology, Federal College of Education, Eha-Amufu, Enugu State, Nigeria.

S. U. Ezenwosu
Department of Biology, Federal College of Education, Eha-Amufu, Enugu State, Nigeria.

G. U. Ogbodo
Department of Biology, Federal College of Education, Eha-Amufu, Enugu State, Nigeria.

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No Association between Urogenital Schistosomiasis and HIV Infection among Children in Ore Community, Southwestern Nigeria | Chapter 04 | Recent Advances in Biological Research Vol. 6

Aim: To determine if there was any association between urogenital schistosomiasis and HIV infection among children in Ore Community, Southwestern Nigeria.

Methodology: Urine samples were collected from 438 children and examined microscopically for ova of Schistosoma haematobium. A sample of 3 ml of blood was drawn from each participant for HIV test. Antibodies to HIV were determined using Determine HIV1/2 kit, Unigold kit and enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA).

Results: The overall prevalence of S. haematobium infection was 30.1% while that of HIV infection was 0.9%. None of the 132 S. haematobium infected children had HIV infection while 1.3% of the 306 children negative for S. haematobium were positive for HIV test.

Conclusion: This study did not show any evidence of association between urogenital schistosomiasis and HIV infection among children in Ore, Southwestern Nigeria. Therefore, urogenital schistosomiasis may not play a significant role in the spread of HIV infection in a locality where HIV prevalence is low.

Author(s) Details

C. Igbeneghu
Department of Medical Laboratory Science, College of Health Sciences, Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, Ogbomoso, Nigeria.

S. A. Adedokun
Department of Medical Microbiology and Parasitology, College of Health Sciences, Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, Ogbomoso, Nigeria.
Department of Community Medicine, College of Health Sciences, Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, Ogbomoso, Nigeria.

A. A. Akindele
Department of Community Medicine, College of Health Sciences, Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, Ogbomoso, Nigeria.

J. M. Olisekodiaka
Department of Chemical Pathology, College of Medicine, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Nnewi, Nigeria.

D. E. Idolor
Department of Medical Laboratory Science, College of Health Sciences, Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, Ogbomoso, Nigeria.

and O. Ojurongbe
Department of Medical Microbiology and Parasitology, College of Health Sciences, Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, Ogbomoso, Nigeria.

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Response of Okra (Abelmoschus esculentus (L.) Moench) and Weeds to Plant Spacing and Weeding Regime in a Humid Forest Agro-Ecology of South-Eastern Nigeria | Chapter 03 | Recent Advances in Biological Research Vol. 6

Okra (Abelmoschus esculentus (L.) Moench) is a vegetable crop belonging to the family of Malvaceae. It is extensively grown in the tropic and sub- tropics but had its origin in Central Africa. One of the cultural practices that farmers used in controlling weeds in okra farm is spacing. It is a distance between one cultivated crop and another. The spacing between rows and along rows varies one type of crop to another. Field experiment was carried out in late 2015 and repeated in early 2016 cropping season at the Teaching and Research Farm of the University of Port Harcourt, Choba, Rivers State, Nigeria to determine the appropriate spacing and weeding regimes for okra production. Three spacing (60 cm x 15 cm, 60 cm x 20 cm and 60 cm x 30 cm) and three weeding regimes [no weeding, weekly weeding, and twice at 3 and 7 weeks after planting (WAP)] were used. The experimental design was a 3 x 3 factorial scheme laid out in a Randomised Complete Block Design (RCBD) with three replications. The results showed that plant spaced at a closer spacing of 60 cm x 15 cm suppressed weeds better than other spacing in both years of study. Okra performance was better at closer spacing of 60 cm x 15 cm than in other spacing regimes. Similarly, weedy check had higher weed growth and least performance than other weeding regimes. There was significant interaction between spacing and weeding regimes. Plant spaced at closer spacing of 60 cm x 15 cm combined with weekly weeding plots had the lowest weed density and dry weight of 0.00 plants /m2 and 0.00 g/m2 in both years of study. While 60 cm x 30 cm combined with no weeding gave the highest weed density and dry weight (395.00 plants/m2 and 306.33 plants/m2) and (88.33 plants/m2 and 95.33 g/m2) in the late and early 2015 and 2016 cropping seasons respectively. The interaction effect further showed  that the highest fresh pod yield  was obtained from  plant  spaced at 60 cm x 15cm with weekly weeding (3.02 t/ha and 2.26 t/ha)  followed by  60 cm x 15 cm  with twice weeding  at 3 and 7 WAP (2.96 and 2.22 t/ha). While, plant spaced at 60 cm x 30 cm with no weeding had the lowest fresh pod yield (0.08 t/ha and 0.03 t/ha). Since, the yield obtained from 60 cm x 15 cm with twice weeding (3 and 7 WAP) was not statistically different from 60 cm x 15 cm weekly weeding, for economic considering the former could be recommended.

Author(s) Details

Omovbude, Sunday
Department of Crop and Soil Science, University of Port Harcourt, East West Road, Choba, P.M.B. 5323, Port Harcourt, Nigeria.

Udensi Ekea Udensi
Department of Crop and Soil Science, University of Port Harcourt, East West Road, Choba, P.M.B. 5323, Port Harcourt, Nigeria.

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Conservation Assessment of Plants Used for Respiratory Diseases by Using Ethnobotanical Criteria: Case of Lake Victoria Region, Tanzania | Chapter 02 | Recent Advances in Biological Research Vol. 6

Lake Victoria region has the highest HIV prevalence in East Africa due to concentration of commercial farms, fishing and mining that escalate social dynamic interactions. High rates of HIV transmission and poor working conditions further amplify the risk of TB in the region. Local populations in the area have opted different alternatives among which medicinal plants are popular for managing health conditions related to the respiratory diseases. Consequently, selective consumerism of plants for managing respiratory diseases profoundly affects diversity of priority medicinal plants. Detection of the effect of selective consumerism to the preferred plants in-situ is not instantaneous unless much focused approach is employed. In this study, an ethnobotanical assessment criterion was used to assess and identify conservation status for most useful plants. To achieve this, open ended questionnaires and focus group discussions were used for collecting ethnobotanical information from 37 traditional health practitioners on the use of herbal remedies against various respiratory diseases. Guideline by the international union for conservation of nature (IUCN) medicinal plant specialist group was used to assess qualitative distribution of indicator species through ethnographic methods. A protocol for conservation assessment management plan was used to prioritize limited number of species for ex-situ conservation. Ethnobotanical parameters, value–index and legislation-index were used for scoring in two-dimensional manner. Scoring analysis highly prioritized non-timber plants including Rubia cordifolia, Crassocephalum manii and Pavetta crassipes for conservation over timber species. From the findings, an ethnobotanical assessment criterion is recommended for total conservation of all plant categories in the wild including the often neglected non timber plant species.

Author(s) Details

J. N. Otieno
Institute of Traditional Medicine, Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences, P.O.Box 65001 Dar es salaam, Tanzania.

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Establishment of Rice Yield Prediction Model Using Canopy Reflectance | Chapter 01 | Recent Advances in Biological Research Vol. 6

The major objectives of this study were to identify spectral characteristics associated with rice yield and to establish their quantitative relationships. Field experiments were conducted at Shi-Ko experimental farm of TARI’s Chiayi Station, during 2001 to 2005. Rice cultivar Tainung 67 (Oryza sativa L.), the major cultivar grown in Taiwan, was used in the study. Various levels of rice yield were obtained via nitrogen application treatments. Canopy reflectance spectra were measured during entire growth period and dynamic changes of characteristic spectrum were analyzed. Relationships among rice yields and characteristic spectrum were studied to establish yield estimation models suitable for remote sensing purposes. Spectrum analysis indicated that the changes of canopy reflectance spectrum were least during booting stages. Therefore, the canopy reflectance spectra during this period were selected for model development. Two multiple regression models, constituting of band ratios (NIR/RED and NIR/GRN) were then constructed to estimate rice yields for first and second crops separately. Results of the validation experiments indicated that the derived regression equations successfully predicted rice yield using canopy reflectance measured at booting stage unless other severe stresses occurred afterward.

We also integrated multiple regression models, derived from reflectance spectrum measurements and using band ratios (NIR/RED and NIR/GRN) as independent variables, with SPOT 5 multispectral images taken at booting stage to predict rice yield before harvest. A 4.8-ha paddy rice field was used as testing ground for the accuracy of prediction with the rice yield prediction model. Within the site, different rice yield scenarios were produced by using combinations of rice varieties, Japonica and Indica type, nitrogen rate and drought treatments. Rice yields harvested in 10m X 10m mesh were used as ground truth data for comparison. The regional rice yield map is produced with the rice yield prediction model using SPOT 5 images taken at booting stage in this study. The results from the regional rice yield map shows that the relative errors between actual yield and predicted yield in the first season and second season in 2014 are lower than 5%. Those have demonstrated its potential for using SPOT 5 images to estimate the regional rice yield with the rice yield prediction model derived from reflectance spectrum measurements and using band ratios (NIR/RED and NIR/GRN) as independent variables.

Author(s) Details

K. W. Chang
College of Tourism Management, Baise University, Guangxi, 533000, China.

K. X. Li
College of Tourism Management, Baise University, Guangxi, 533000, China.

L. H. Xie
College of Tourism Management, Baise University, Guangxi, 533000, China.

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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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