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July 2010

  1. Sankar Kumar Dey, Nimai Chand Masanta and Samiran Bisai

    To assess the nutritional and anthropometric status, to compared the relationship between socioeconomic statuses (SES) of rural adolescents of West Bengal. A cross sectional survey was carried out among 80 rural adolescent in North 24-Parganas district. Dietary nutritional status was assessed following standard method. Anthropometric measurement like height and, weight and mid arm circumference was measured and the body mass index (BMI) was computed. The new international BMI-based cut-off points were utilized to identify thinness, overweight and obesity. The results reveal that children belonging to high socioeconomic status (HSES) consumed significantly higher amount of dietary nutrient compared to low socioeconomic status (LSES). Moreover, consumption of dietary fat among girls in both SES was similar. Overall, the prevalence of thinness was 47.5%. The prevalence of thinness was higher in LSES (21.3%) compared with HSES (1.3%). Overall, the prevalence of overweight was 16.3%. It was observed in HSES, especially among girls. Similarly, prevalence of thinness was higher among girls (30.0%) in LSES compared to boys (12.5%) from the same SES. The present study shows that nutrient intakes were lower among children with LSES in both sexes. Thus, mean anthropometric characteristics was lower in this group. Consequently, much more emphasis needs to be given to increase the nutrient of their diets especially among adolescents belonging to LSES.

  2. Mutasim M. Khalafalla, Magdoleen G. Osman and Elsadig Agabna

    An in vitro tissue culture experiments were carried out to investigate the effects of supplementary potassium and calcium nitrate applied to basal media on morphogenesis of saline stressed tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill. Cv. Omdurman). Shoot tip explants were cultured on MS media salinized with NaCl and supplemented with KNO3 and Ca (NO3)2. Treatments consist of four NaCl concentrations (0.0, 50, 75 and 100 mM) in combination with either KNO3 ( 0.0, 5, 10, 15 and 20 mM) or Ca (NO3)2 (0.0, 5, 10, 15 and 20 mM). Salinity significantly reduced the root growth, shoot growth and whole plant growth. Root growth was more reduced by the presence of NaCl in growth media than shoot growth. Application of supplemental calcium nitrate (20 mM) and potassium nitrate (15 mM) resulted in mitigation of the harmful effect of NaCl on tomato growth. However Ca (NO3)2 at 20 mM has negative effect on tomato shoot tip rooting %. In non salinized media, the best root and shoot growth was observed at 10 mM Ca (NO3)2. These findings suggest that the additions of potassium and calcium nitrate can ameliorate the negative effect of salinity on the growth of tomato.

  3. Mir, M.R., Khan, N.A., Bhat, M.A., Lone, N.A., Rather, G.H., Razvi, S.M., Bhat, K.A., Singh, S. and Payne, W.A.

    India depends more than any other nation on groundwater depletion for food security and must seek ways to increase crop water-use efficiency (WUE). One approach is to increase plant photosynthetic capacity and transpiration ration (TR). Our objective was to measure the effects of ethephon and N on photosynthesis and related physiological traits of Indian mustard (Brassica juncea L. Czern and Coss, cv. Alankar). Field experiments were conducted in Aligarh, India under irrigated and non-irrigated conditions. Four levels of N (0 to 80 kg ha-1) and three levels of ethrel (0 to 200 µl l-1) were used. Ethrel and N nearly always had additive effects on LAI and plant dry matter (PDM) in both irrigated and non-irrigated experiments. Similarly, most gas exchange traits responded linearly to ethrel and N addition. At 80 days after sowing (DAS), photosynthesis increased from 16.5 to 25.7 μmol m-2 s-1 due to N application, and from 19.5 to 24.7 μmol m-2 s-1 due to ethrel application. TR increased from 36 to 45 μmol mol-1 due to N, and from 36 μmol mol-1 to ~43.5 μmol mol-1 due to ethrel. The highest combination of ethrel and N gave TR values of 51 μmol mol-1. Carboxylation efficiency (CE) was nearly constant among treatments at ~0.095 μmol m-2 s-1 per μmol mol-1 increase of [CO2]. However all points above the 0.95 confidence level of the regression curve belonged to the 200 μl l-1 ethrel treatment, and all below to the 0 μl l-1 ethrel treatment, suggesting lower photorespiration and CO2 compensation point for ethrel treated plants. Results are consistent with reports that ethrel affects several cellular processes related to photosynthesis. Ethrel spray, either alone or in combination with N application, may provide a potential management tool for increasing water use efficiency (WUE) in India and other water-limited regions of the world.

  4. Mir, M.R., Khan, N.A., Ashraf Bhat, M., Lone, N. A., Rather, G.H., Razvi, S.M., Bhat, K.A., Singh, S. and Payne, W.A.

    A field study was conducted at the experimental farm of Aligarh Muslim University, Aligarh on two cultivars of mustard (Brassia juncea L. Czern and Coss) namely “Alankar” and “PBM-16” under irrigated and non-irrigated conditions to assess the effect of ethrel (200 µLL-1) on the characteristics of growth and photosynthesis. Ethrel was sprayed at flowering stage [60 days after sowing (DAS)] to mustard crop. Leaf area index, plant dry mass, net photosynthetic rate (PN), internal CO2 concentration, stomatal conductance, transpiration rate, carboxylation efficiency, photosynthetic water use efficiency and plant water use efficiency were determined at 80 and 100 days after sowing (DAS). Leaf area index, plant dry mass, net photosynthetic rate, internal CO2 concentration, stomatal conductance, transpiration rate, carboxylation efficiency, photosynthetic water use efficiency and plant use efficiency were increased by 40.1, 25.0, 30.1, 15.8, 12.9, 9.9, 12.9, 20.8 and 15.1% respectively, by application of 200 µLL-1 ethrel.

  5. Lone, N.A., Khan, N.A., Bhat, M.A., Mir, M.R., Razvi, S.M., Baht, K.A., Rather, G.H., Nawsheeba Wani, Sabina Akhter, Bukhari, S.A., Wani, S. A. and Rizwan Rashid

    The plant hormones are extremely important agent in the integration of developmental activities. Environmental factors often exert inductive effects by evoking changes in hormones in metabolism and distribution within the plant. Apart from it, they also regulate expression of intrinsic genetic potential of plants. Control of genetic expression has been demonstrated for the phytohormones at both transcriptional and translational levels. Also, hormones receptors and binding proteins have been identified on membrane surface that are specific for some hormones. Apart from nutrition, if plants hormonal balance can be made through chemical manipulation, there would be a benefit in economising the nutrients and augmenting oil seed production. One such group of chemical is thought to be plant growth regulators. Besides naturally occurring growth regulating substances, there are chemicals which may act as plant growth promoters or plant growth retardants. Chlorocholine Chloride (CCC) is gibberellin biosynthesis inhibitor involved in the inhibition of cyclization of geranyl -geranyl pyrophosphate to copyallyl pyrophosphate. But the present study indicates that chlorocholine chloride is a quaternary ammonium compound type of growth retardant involved in a diverse array of cellular, developmental and stress related processes in plants. A number of examples of the role played by CCC in the growth and development of plants are described, plant height, leaf number, leaf area index, dry mass, chlorophyll and photosynthetic parameters, photosynthetic active radiation, nutrient uptake, seed yield, biological yield, oil yield, harvest index, amino acid and protein content. The study indicates that the process of growth and development in addition to the yield of plants is significantly affected by the chlorocholine chloride in both irrigated and non- irrigated conditions.

  6. Ihechiluru I. Ezeigbo and Chinaka O. Nwaehujor

    The sera of clinically confirmed typhoid patients in Nsukka urban area, along with healthy individuals were collected and analysed for MDA, total cholesterol and total lipid levels. Results showed total cholesterol levels in typhoid patients as 142.22± 29.83 and of healthy individuals as 211.19±22.02. It also showed total lipid levels as 128.98±3.39 and 154.95±11.40 in typhoid and healthy individuals respectively. Mean MDA levels were observed as 1.073±0.51 and 0.820±0.53 in typhoid and healthy individuals respectively.The results show that inflammation of the bowel caused by Salmonella typhi infection may lead to oxidative stress-mediated production of reactive oxygen species, causing lipid peroxidation in typhoid patients.

  7. Chukwunonso ECC EJIKE and Lawrence US EZEANYIKA

    Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) was induced in rats using a mixture of dihydrotestosterone (DHT) and estradiol valerate (ratio 10:1). The fasting blood glucose levels, serum lipid profile and pro-atherogenic indices of the rats were estimated using standard procedures, and compared to those of rats in a control group. The results show that rats in the test group had significantly (p<0.05) lower fasting blood glucose and serum total cholesterol levels, while the other lipid and lipoprotein parameters and serum lipid pro-atherogenic indices were similar (p>0.05) in both groups. Though BPH is thought to be related to metabolic derangements, it appears that BPH can be induced without a collateral disruption of serum macromolecular metabolism.

  8. Chukwunonso ECC Ejike, Obioma O Nwankwo and Ifeoma I Ijeh

    Freshly prepared coconut milk (25%, 50% and 100% preparations) was administered to mice in three test groups for 14 days. The control group was given an equal volume of tap water for the same period. Consumption of the different concentrations of coconut milk was found not to alter significantly (p>0.05) the serum lipid profile and pro-atherogenic indices of mice in the test groups, relative to the control group. Coconut milk may not increase the cardiovascular disease risk of those who consume it for food or for its medicinal values

  9. Samiran Bisai, Tarapada Ghosh and Kaushik Bose

    To assess the nutritional status among urban poor children aged 1-5 years a cross sectional study was undertaken during February-June 2006 in three municipal wards of North 24-Parganas district, West Bengal, India. All information like age, sex, religion, caste, weight and height were collected from each subject through questionnaire following simple random sampling method. Nutritional status was assessed based on weight-for-age, height-for-age and weight-for-height z-score method. Undernutrition was defined as Z-score below -2.0 SD from the National Centre for Health Statistics (NCHS) reference population. A total of 899 children (boys=517; girls=382) aged 1-5 years were included in the present study. Overall, the prevalence of underweight, stunting and wasting was 63.6 (95% CI: 60.5 - 66.8) %, 52.7% (95% CI: 49.5-56.0) and 22.0% (95% CI: 19.6-25.1). Overall, 16.7 % (CI: 14.1-19.0), 25.1% (CI: 22.3-28.0) and 5.3% (CI: 4.0- 6.9) children were found to be severely underweight, stunted and wasted, respectively. Moreover, the prevalence of underweight was significantly higher among tribal (71.5%) children than Muslim (67.2%) and Hindu (57.6%) children. On the other hand, the prevalence of stunting and wasting was higher among Hindu and Muslim children, respectively. In addition, according to WHO (1995) criteria for severity of malnutrition, the overall prevalence of underweight, stunting and wasting were very high indicating a critical situation. Therefore, appropriate health policies and measures must be implemented to reduce the burden imposed by poverty on childhood health and nutritional stress among these areas.

  10. Ashwini Kumar Dixit and Shivani Vaidya

    There is a strong correlation between secondary metabolite production and morphological differentiation, which gives more impetus to application of organized cell culture for large-scale production of phytopharmaceuticals. The roots are the sites of synthesis and /or storage of plant metabolites; they are important organs for the production of valuable phytochemical. In Ayurvedic system of medicine A. precatorius is used as important drug for various ailments as Roots are used as diuretic, tonic, emetic, alexitric and as substitute of liquorices and have antifertility activity. Roots contain about 5% glycyrrhizin (pentacyclic triterpene glycoside) and 8% of an acid resin. Therefore, an attempt had been made to study the inoculation effect of Agrobacterium rhizogenes on development and production of secondary metabolites in A. precatorius. Significant increment in fresh weight in hairy roots cultured in solidified media was observed. The data revealed 5.25 times increment in fresh weight from initial fresh weights. 700 mg of glycyrrhizin was obtained from 20g of roots of field-grown plant giving the concentration of glycyrrhizin - 35mg/g d.w.b. Absorbance of hairy roots extract at 248nm is 6.615 with the help of regression equation (for standard curve of glycyrrhizin) concentration of glycyrrhizin was found to be 71.35mg/g d.w.b.

  11. Igwe Ikechukwu, R. Ndelekwute Eugenes, K. and Uzegbu Hyginus, O.

    A total of one hundred and ninety two day old broiler chicks were used to evaluate the growth and heamatological effects of Ascorbic acid (AA) supplementation on coocidia-challenged broiler chickens. The design was a 4 x 2 factorial in a completely randomized design. The main-factor was the period or length of time of administering ascorbic acid (AA), while the sub-factor was the dosage of AA used for the feed composition. The birds were challenged with oocysts of Eimeria tenella at the end of the third week; and started manifesting signs of coccidiosis four days after challenge. The oocyst count and percentage mortality were significantly (P<0.05) different for the main-factors and the interactions, but not for the sub-factors. At the end of eight weeks experimental period, percentage mortality were significantly (P<0.05) different for the main-factors and the interactions, but not for the sub-factors; while the oocyst count were significantly (P<0.05) different for the main-factors, sub-factors and interactions. The haematological parameters – Packed Cell Volume (PCV), Haemoglobin (Hb), White Blood Cell (WBC), Red Blood Cell (RBC), Mean Corpuscular Volume (MCV) and Mean Corpuscular Haemoglobin Concentration (MCHC) were significantly (P<0.05) different for the main-factors, sub-factors and the interactions; except for the MCHC which was not significantly (P<0.05) different for the sub-factors and the interactions. The plasma constituents – plasma protein and plasma lipid were significantly (P<0.05) different for the main-factors and the sub-factors. Whereas plasma lipid was significantly (P<0.05) different for the interactions, it was not so for the plasma protein. It may be concluded that supplementing broiler diets with 150mgAA per Kg of feed has profound effect on growth and haematology which in turn leads to reduction in the severity of coccidiosis in birds.

  12. Eze, V.C. and Ikeri, E.P

    The enumeration and characterization of microorganisms involved in the degradation of abattoir waste in Port Harcourt was investigated. Soil and wastewater samples contaminated with abattoir wastes were collected. The mean counts of the soil samples showed that the total aerobic plate count ranged from 3.2 ± 1.1 to 7.3 + 2.3 Log10cfu/g; proteolytic count ranged from 1.9 ± 0.3 to 3.0 + 0.9 Log10cfu/g; amylolytic count ranged from 1.1 ± 0.30 to 3.85 + 0.8 Log10cfu/g; cellulolytic count ranged from 0.35 ± 0.15 to 0.95 + 0.30 Log10cfu/g and lipolytic count ranged from 0 to 0.06 + 0.01 Log10cfu/g.The fungal count ranged from 2.2 ± 1.3 to 4.5 + 1.5 Log10cfu/g. The mean counts of the wastewater samples revealed that the total aerobic plate count ranged from 2.0 ± 0.9 to 8.6 ± 3.6 Log10cfu/m; proteolytic count ranged from 1.6 ± 0.7 to 4.7 ± 2.1 Log10cfus/mL; amylolytic count ranged from 0.45 ± 0.1 to 4.0 ± 1.7 log10cfu/mL; cellulolytic count ranged from 0.28 ± 0.06 to 0.35 ± 0.11 Log10cfu/mL while the lipolytic count had no count. The fungal count ranged from 2.2 ± 1.4 to 3.2 ± 1.6 Log10cfu/mL.The microorganisms isolated were Staphylococcus aureus, Cytophaga species, Streptococccus species, Pseudomonas species, Bacillus species, Micrococcus species, Klebsiella species, Vibrio cholerae Aspergillus species, Cladosporium species and Rhizopus species This indicates that microorganisms can actively degrade abattoir waste.

  13. Azza M., El-Sheikh, and Mutasim M. Khalafalla

    In the present study we report a highly efficient and cost effective in vitro micropropagation protocol for dumb cane (Dieffenbachia compacta) an ornamental foliage plant of high commercial value. Stem nodal segment (0.5 - 1.0 cm) excised from vegetative stem obtained from mature plants was used as explants. The result of surface sterilization indicated that 100% of contamination-free nodal explants were obtained with 0.25% mercuric chloride (HgCl2). Sterilized explants were inoculated on Murashige and Skoog (MS) medium supplemented with various concentrations (0.25–10 mg/L) of benzyl adenine (BA), N6-2-isopentyl adenine (2iP), 6-Furfurylaminopurine (Kin) and Thidiazuron (TDZ) to determine the specific type and concentration of growth regulators suitable for multiple shoot induction. The highest number of multiple shoots (6.7 ±1.1) was obtained on explants cultured on MS medium containing 10.0 mg/L BA. The synergistic influence of naphthalene acetic acid (NAA) with BA did not improve the number of shoots per explants. In vitro induced shoots were rooted on half-strength MS media without growth regulator. The well rooted plantlets were transplanted to plastic pots containing autoclaved garden soil and sand at ratio of 1:1, then hardened off and transferred to greenhouse where grown to maturity with 100% success.

  14. Visha Kumari, V Prem Sekhar, M. and Subbalaksmi Lokanathan

    Rice is a crop which consumes more water than any other cereal crop. As irrigation water shrinks globally, there is a need to screen different rice varieties which perform better with less water. An experiment was conducted in the clay loam soil in TNAU, in a split plot design, with seven rice hybrids and seven aromatic rice varieties (all lowland varieties) under saturated (0.5cm of standing water) and flooded (2.5 cm of standing water) soil conditions. Varieties were evaluated for yield and water use efficiency. Rice hybrids and aromatic rice varieties recorded higher yield in flooded soil condition. But water use efficiency (35% more) was higher in saturated soil condition. Two hybrids, NDR-359 and KRH-2 and one aromatic rice variety, Mugad sugandhi recorded less yield reduction and better water productivity than other varieties in saturated soil condition.

  15. Balasubramanian Ramesh, Prabakaran Vadivelu, Kuppuswamy Kavitha, Gopalakrishnan Suresh, Nagaiya Ravichandran, Ganesan Vijaiyan Siva

    The Indian green frog (Euphlyctis hexadactylus) is a common species existing in aquatic environment. The skin secretions of these frogs have potential antimicrobial peptides. It inhibited growth of pathogenic gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria and opportunistic fungal pathogens and also treated plant fungal diseases. The minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) of the peptide, against the human pathogenic bacteria and fungus ranging between 128 to 512 µg / ml and 32 to 64 µg / ml respectively. The result of growth inhibition against plant fungal pathogen, maximum zone was obtained from Fusarium oxysporum (36 ± 0.5 mm) and minimum zone of inhibition from Rhizoctonia solani (24 ± 01 mm). The results clearly indicate the crude skin secretions of green frog (Euphlyctis hexadactylus) contain strong antifungal activity and conclusively demonstrated that these frog secretions are having immense potential as agricultural antimicrobial agents. However, the nature and sequences of these peptides are yet to be elucidated.

  16. Patchaivaziamman, J. and Krishnamurthy, S.

    Education is conceived as a powerful agency for any national development. Development of a nation largely depends on the adequate availability of appropriately trained teachers and Trainee teachers of Teacher Education Institutions. Interest in teaching profession is a must to achieve the best aspect of development. Only, if there is interest towards teaching profession, a Trainee teacher can execute his/her varied teaching skill effectively from simulated environment to natural setting. An Inventory measures only selected aspects of personality contributing to the total behaviour of an individual. Teaching Interest Inventory attempts to provide a score indicating feelings of pleasantness-unpleasantness or like-dislike to varied teaching environmental stimuli, makes an important contribution to counseling thereby modifying the behaviour of trainee teachers and will more frequently cause the trainee teacher to investigate how she/he can develop his aptitudes in teaching.





Rosane Cavalcante Fragoso, Brasil


Chief Scientific Officer and Head of a Research Group

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