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June 2010

Abiotic stresses like drought and high salinity are the most damaging factors to agricultural productivity worldwide. Functional genomics has played a key role in making plant breeding more efficient in development of crop varieties tolerant to biotic and abiotic stresses. Numerous genes and their products respond to these stresses at transcriptional and translational level. Discovery of these novel genes has been the main objective of all plant breeders.

In the present study, an attempt has been made to assess whether the effect of benzene extract of Ocimum sanctum leaves on the spermatogenic pattern and ultrastructure changes in testis of albino rats. Wistar strain male albino rats were orally administered 250 mg/kg body weight of O.sanctum leaves followed by maintaining suitable controls for 48 days. Results indicate that spermatogenesis was arrested either at the primary spermatocytes or the spermatogonial stages. Damaged seminiferous tubules and abundance of vacuoles of varying size were observed.

In order to facilitate genetic studies in mammalian cells, we developed a cost efficient lipid-mediated plasmid DNA transfection protocol utilizing food oil as a transfer-mediator. The intention was to create and/or improve a cheap and efficient method. Compared to the conventional transfection using commercially available lipofection-specimen, this procedure remarkably enhanced the delivery of a GFP reporter plasmid into HEK293 cells.

A survey was conducted in Nanded and Beed district, for the ethno medicinal plants. The paper documents were prepared from ethnomedicinal uses of wild plant species in Nanded and Beed District. The plants parts are most commonly used in treatment of various diseases are roots, leaves, whole plant bark and seeds. Inspite of vast scientific development in modern age man is looking towards traditional medicines.

This study evaluated the toxicological effects of raw and cooked Mucuna pruriens seeds using its effect on liver enzymes and serum bilirubin (total and conjugated) of white albino Wistar rats in the laboratory. Powdered raw and cooked M. pruriens seed meal were incorporated into the feed of rats at different percent (10,20 and 50%) inclusion levels for the test animals while normal feed was given to the negative control rats for 28 days after which blood samples were collected from each rat for serum analysis.

The anti hyperglycemic potentials of seven medicinal plants used in Nsukka area of Enugu state, Nigeria namely Bridellia micrantha, Oxythinia Abyssinia, Ixora brachypoda, Gmelina aborrea, Terminalia catappa, Hymenocardia acida and Cassytha filiformis were investigated on alloxan induced diabetic mice. The oral LD50 of the methanolic extracts in mice were greater than 2000 mg/kg. Phytochemical analysis of the extract revealed the presence of high levels of alkaloids, tannins, flavonoids, glycosides and saponins.

An endophytic bacterium was isolated from the surface sterilized pneumatophores of mangrove plant Avicennia marina, Vellar estuary, south east coast of India. Using 16S rRNA sequencing the bacterium was identified as Bacillus cereus –SjAM16104 with similarity of 99% and sequence has been deposited under accession number GU930360. It grew optimally at 26ºC, pH 7 and 5% of salinity.

The present studies have emphasizes on the correction of soil and water quality of china clay mines with the help of organic and inorganic fertilizer and become transfer to like a productive pond. After successful transformation of china clay mines like a productive one, fingerling stages of Indian major carps were released to the mine water and the growth performance was observed with minute care. At the initial stage, mortality rate was high and after acclimation it slowed down. Monthly variation of growth, biochemical composition and nutritional quality were estimated and recorded.

The competitive nodulation ability of a Bradyrhizobium strain is an important property, as strains must compete with other Bradyrhizobia in the rhizosphere for nodulation sites on the host plant. If inoculants strains are to succeed, they must have the ability of competitiveness as well as being effective in symbiosis. The establishment of effective nodulation of soybean plant can be enhanced by using effective and competitive strains of Bradyrhizobium.

Aflatoxins, the most frequently studied mycotoxins, are produced by certain Aspergillus species/strains/isolates of fungi. The aflatoxin biosynthetic pathway studies have led to a number of discoveries. Several structural and their enzymes involved in the biosynthesis of aflatoxins have been discovered and purified. Aflatoxin production and contamination of agricultural crops are major causes of economic losses in agriculture. Thus, better methods of characterization/differentiation are required for both aflatoxigenic and non-aflatoxigenic isolates.

The effect of lethal concentrations as 0.33 ppm, 0.26 ppm, 0.17 ppm and 0.09 ppm of tributyltin chloride on lipid content in ovary, hepatopancreas, gill and muscle of a freshwater prawn, Macrobrachium kistnensis for 24, 48, 72 and 96 hours respectively has been investigated. The result showed that TBTCl induces significant alteration in lipid metabolic profiles in ovary, hepatopancreas, gill and muscle after exposure to lethal concentration.

When HEK293 cells were transfected with a plasmid containing CMV promoter driven human wild-type PRND gene, the doppel protein was diffusely observed at the cytoplasm as seen in cancer cells. The transfected cells incubated with proteasome inhibitor N-acetyl-leucinal- leucinal- norleucinal (ALLN), resulted in apparent accumulation of the doppel protein. Furthermore, an alpha helix domain of the doppel protein appeared to be coimmunoprecipitated with ubiquitin related HSP70 protein.

A simple, economic, and time-efficient stability-indicating, reverse-phase ultra-performance liquid chromatographic (RP-UPLC) method has been developed for analysis of donepezil hydrochloride in the presence of both impurities and degradation products generated by forced degradation. When donepezil hydrochloride was subjected to acid hydrolytic, oxidative, base hydrolysis, photolytic, and thermal stress, degradation was observed after oxidative and base hydrolysis. The drug was found to be stable to other stress conditions.

We have developed an artificial dual promoter cassette system called APRICOT-1-2-3, in which a target gene specific sequence is inserted between inverted two short artificial promoters. A single step PCR protocol has been developed by using this system that allows the production of this cassette in a high throughput manner. Actually, easily prepared APRICOT-1-2-3 constructs induced effective protein expression-silencing for p38MAPK and JNK.

The present research was undertaken to determine the physical properties of batter, physio- chemical properties and organoleptic evaluation of the developed Idlis. Idlis were prepared from Rice and Black gram dhal incorporating Pearl millet. All the ingredients were collected from the local market. Three types of Idlis namely standard idli, mixed idli and pearl millet idli was prepared using different combinations of ingredients such as Rice (Parboiled), Black gram and Pearl millet. The developed products were analyzed for physical and chemical parameters and organoleptic evaluation.

Three samples of green algal isolates were collected and purified from Sivagangai, Tamil Nadu, India. The genomic DNA from the the isolates was isolated using CTAB method and 18S rRNA gene of each isolate was amplified using primers CV1 and CV2. The variation in the DNA sequence was detected through Restriction fragment length polymorphism analysis.

14 species of cyanobacteria belongs to 10 genera were isolated and identified from Athirampattinam coastal area of Tamil Nadu coast. Among this, Oscillatoria princeps and Lyngbya majuscula were the dominant group selected for the present study. The antimicrobial activity of Oscillatoria princeps and Lyngbya majuscula was maintained by using different solvents viz. ethanol, acetone, methanol and water.

Glaucidae is a taxonomic family of colorful sea slugs (blue ocean slugs). This is the first report presenting the occurrence of G. atlanticus and G. marginata in Nagapattinam coastal area, Bay of Bengal coastal shore (South East coast of India). All these animals float on the surface of the ocean being carried by the currents and the winds. Both species of G. atlanticus and G. matginata are closely associated with other open ocean invertebrates such as the Portuguese-man-of-war (Physalia physalis), the wind-sailor (Velella velella) and Porpita porpita.

Parangipettai historically called Porto Novo is situated on the north bank of the mouth of the Vellar estuary (11° 29'50"N and 79° 46'24"E). Algal blooms (Cyanobacteria) were observed during the monsoon season (December) 2009 at Vellar estuary. Microcystis aeruginosa was determined as the bloom-forming species. Microcystis aeruginosa was counted as 37,600 colony/L and the Chlorophyll-a was measured as 18.61 μg/l. In this respect, Nutrient analysis (Nitrite, Nitrate, Phosphate, Silicate and Ammonia) were carried out.

This study was carried out to investigate the therapeutic role of the aqueous extract of Pleurotus florida (PF) on thioacetamide induced hepatotoxicity in rats. Thioacetamide at the dose of 600mg/kg body weight orally produced liver damage in rats as manifested by the significant rise in serum levels of aspartate aminotransferase (AST), alanine aminotransferase (ALT), alkaline phosphatase (ALP), bilirubin, cholesterol and decreases the protein level compared with control.

Antimicrobial compound producing endophytic bacteria were isolated from a medicinal plant Vinca rosea. One of the isolated endophytes produced potential antimicrobial activity against some selected human pathogenic bacteria and a yeast. Morphological and biochemical characterizations indicated that the isolate, strain Vrb 46 was similar with Bacillus coagulans. TLC analysis of concentrated culture filtrate revealed several UV active bands on silica gel plate. Fermented cell free broth was extracted with chloroform-methanol and antimicrobial activity was found in the organic fraction.

Three green algal isolates (ALAK 1, ALAK 2 and ALAK 3) from fresh water lakes of Sivagangai district of Tamil Nadu were characterized for various biochemical properties such as chlorophyll, carotenoid, protein, lipid and hydrocarbon. The qualitative analysis of lipids extracted from these algal isolates revealed the feasibility for commercial exploitation of these algal species. The study also revealed ALAK 3 had high potential of biofuel production.





Rosane Cavalcante Fragoso, Brasil


Chief Scientific Officer and Head of a Research Group

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