Characterization of lemma and palea in nine different species of Eragrostis (Poaceae) (2021-09-02)
Eragrostis, the largest genus in tribe Eragrostideae has 36 species in India and with 406 species in the world. The present study investigates the morphological and micromorphological variations of lemma and palea in nine species of the Eragrostis, collected from Panchmahal and Dahod districts of Gujarat. Qualitative and quantitative features of microharis, and epidermal cells in the different regions, apex middle and base of lemma and palae has been observed. Apart from this, undulation patterns also play a key role in species identification. Two major types of undulation pattern ∩ and Ω have been observed in the studied species. The present study concludes that, different types of microhairs, size and shape of epidermal cells and its undulating pattern can be significantly used in delimitation of Eragrostis with the help of all the qualitative and qualitative characteristic features it was possible to prepare a dichotomous key to identify the nine different species of Eragrostis.
Leaf venation patterns in Saxifraga L. species (Saxifragaceae) of Indian Western Himalaya and its taxonomic implications (2021-08-18)
In the present study leaf venation types of 30 Saxifraga L. species, found in Indian Western Himalaya, were studied. Out of these, leaf venation patterns of 20 species were not previously studied. In total, five major types of leaf venations- acrodomous (perfect-basal; perfect-suprabasal; imperfect-suprabasal), camptodromous (eucamptodromous), campylodromous, hyphodromous, and palinactinodromous – were recorded. Section Micranthes show palinactinodromous; section Ciliatae show mainly acrodromous; section Mesogyne show palinactinodromous; and sect. Porphyrion show acrodromous, eucamptodromous and hyphodromous types of venation. Palinactinodromous appear as the ancestral venation type.
Moth (Lepidoptera: Heterocera) diversity of Bhubaneswar, Odisha, India: a preliminary study (2021-09-02)
A preliminary checklist has been compiled to study the moth diversity of Bhubaneswar, Odisha, an eastern state of India. The present study has recorded a total of 154 species belonging to 129 genera and 19 families. The highest diversity of moths was recorded in the family Crambidae (48 species, 38 genera), followed by the families Erebidae (42 species, 37 genera), Geometridae (15 species, 12 genera), Noctuidae (13 species, 11 genera) and others. The study was conducted over a period of 18 months from May 2019 to October 2020. Here we present an illustrated checklist of 154 moth species from Bhubaneswar which improves our insight into the lesser-known lepidopterans from the state of Odisha. This shall further help us strengthen our knowledge about the importance of moths in our environment and contribute towards its conservation at large.
Antimicrobial activity and chemical constitution of essential oil from Moroccan thyme (Thymus satureioides C.) on five microbial contaminants (2021-08-18)
Antimicrobial preservatives are widely added to health products to prevent microbial contamination. However, because of the risks attributed to several synthetic agents, manufacturers are searching for new natural agents. Therefore, this work investigated the different physicochemical characteristics of one of those natural ingredients, the essential oil (EO) of Moroccan thyme (Thymus satureioides C.) and its antimicrobial potential against five microbial strains. The physicochemical parameters (density, refractive index, optical rotation, miscibility, acid value, ester value, and flash point) were measured and the chemical composition was determined by GC/MS. The antimicrobial activity was assessed using disc diffusion method and a macrodilution broth method. The EO yield was 1.01% compared to the dry matter. Fifty-two compounds were identified. The major compounds were thymol (28.66%), borneol (21.16%) and α- terpineol (12.33%). The disc diffusion method revealed that all the strains tested showed sensitivity to the EO at concentration of 1636 μg per disc. For the minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) and the minimum microbicidal concentrations (MMC), similar results were obtained for Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli (640 μg/mL), for Pseudomonas aeruginosa (960 μg/mL) and for Candida albicans (800 μg/mL) baring Aspergillus brasiliensis, which had 480 μg/mL and 640 μg/mL for the MIC and MMC, respectively.
Diversity and distribution of Asian forest scorpions (Arthropoda, Scorpionidae, Heterometrinae) in Telangana State, India (2021-08-18)
Asian forest scorpions belong to the subfamily Heterometrinae and include some of the poorly known scorpion fauna in India in general and Telangana State in particular. The Asian forest scorpions occur in South Asia and Southeast Asia and are known from Pakistan in west to the Philippines in the east. There are 27 species of Asian forest scorpions belonging to seven genera Chersonesometrus, Deccanometrus, Gigantometrus, Heterometrus, Javanimetrus, Sahyadrimetrus and Srilankametrus known from India. These are the large-bodied scorpions that are subjected to killing and local collections. Information on their distribution and current taxonomy is not complete. We provide the updated taxonomy, description and distribution maps of four species of Asian forest scorpions known to occur in Telangana State, India.
Viral diseases associated to wild potatoes (Solanum L. section Petota Dumort) and its conservation in Bolivia (2021-08-18)
Different species of wild potatoes are distributed in highlands and inter-Andean valleys of Bolivia. In recent years, potato virus’s incidence has been reported in native and modern varieties of Andean areas of Peru, Ecuador and Bolivia, which could also affect wild potatoes. The main of the present investigation was to identify potato viruses using DAS ELISA in wild potatoes species, from isolated collection places and intensive potato cultivation places in the Bolivian Andean region. Folioles samples from different wild potato species were collected considering isolated distribution areas and potato cultivation intensity areas. The samples were analysed using DAS ELISA for PRX, PVY, PLRV, APLV and APMoV viruses. The results show that in the high Andean zones and inter-Andean valleys some species are contaminated with PVX, PVY and PLRV viruses and not with APLV and APMoV. In the high Andean areas with intensive potato cultivation S. acaule is contaminated with PVX and S. megistacrolobum with PVY and PLRV; however, in the inter-Andean valley areas with intensive potato cultivation, S. brevicaule is contaminated with PVY and S. berthaultii with PVY and PLRV. In isolated or remote areas S. capsicibaccatum, S. microdontum and Solanum spp. they are not contaminated with any analysed viruses.
Vulvo-vaginal myiasis among rural women in West Bengal, India (2021-08-18)
Myiasis, the infestation of living or dead tissue of vertebrates by larvae (maggots) of dipterous flies, is well-known in the medical field. Different parts of the human body, such as skin, oral, nasal, urogenital are affected and named accordingly. The present study was a clinic-entomological study where the women having vulvo-vaginal myiasis were included. Maggots were collected, cultured, and adult flies were identified. A total of 34 cases of vulvo-vaginal myiasis were treated. The larvae of 29 cases were cultured into adults. Most of the women are rural (94%), illiterate and from a low socioeconomic society. The authors specified the infested sites of vulva and vagina such as vaginal, labia, clitoris, episiotomy wound, vulval growth, and prolapsed uterus. The episiotomy wound (32%) is the most common infestation site, followed by the vagina (26%). Chrysomya bezziana (76%) and Chrysomya megacephala (24%) are the identified flies. Illiterate, rural puerperal mothers of low socioeconomic status without proper health education and basic hygiene knowledge are vulnerable to myiasis.
Cytogenetic, chromosome count optimization and automation of Neolamarckia cadamba (Rubiaceae) root tips derived from in vitro mutagenesis (2021-08-18)
Chromosome count is the only direct way to determine the number of chromosomes of a species. This study is often considered trivial that seldom described and discussed in detail. Therefore, it is inevitable that the chromosome count protocol should be revised and revisited before it becomes obliterated. In the present study, we encountered challenges in obtaining a clear micrograph for the chromosome count of active mitotic cells of Neolamarckia cadamba (Roxb.) Bosser (Rubiaceae) root tips. Several obstacles were determined through micrograph observation, such as existing unwanted particles in cells, poor chromosome staining and chromosome clumping. To overcome these, root tip types, staining methodologies, squashing methods were among the factors assessed to obtain clear micrographs. The chromosome counts of N. cadamba under optimized procedure showed 2n = 44 chromosomes. We also apply digital technology in chromosome counts, such as online databases and graphic software that are open source and freely accessible to the public. Only basic laboratory equipment and chemicals were used throughout the study, thus making this study economical and applicable in a basic laboratory. The availability of online digital software and databases provide open-source platforms that will ease the efforts in chromosome count.
Spring phenology of some ornamental species, as an indicator of temperature increase in the urban climate area (2021-09-07)
The aim of this study is to provide information on the phenology of urban spring season, of some species of ornamental trees and shrubs, in the light of climate changes occurred over the recent decades. Ten species of ornamental shrubs and trees cultivated in two areas of a town located in southwestern Romania were studied. It was found that the spring season phenology of the studied species is dependent on the climatic year, in recording differences between the number of days from November 1 and the beginning of each spring phenophase, both from one species to another and from one climatic year to another, and also from one area to another; the spring phenology starting earlier in the urban area regardless of the species and the climatic year. Higher temperatures, rising from one year to another, are speeding-up the onset and development of spring phenology, regardless of species, and the urban climate through the effect of urban heat island leads to even earlier onset of spring phenophases and shortening of the growing season, so that by phenological differences existing within the species from one climatic year to another and from one climatic zone to another, spring season phenology can be considered an indicator of temperature rise.
Efficacy of different human-elephant conflict prevention and mitigation techniques practiced in West Bengal, India (2021-08-18)
Human-elephant conflicts (HEC) have become an ever-increasing threat to wildlife management in recent years around the world. In India, West Bengal has been one of the worst sufferers of these conflicts. With 2.89 % of the entire elephant population in India, the state records a high mortality rate, both human and pachyderm every year. Although several mitigation techniques, traditional as well as modern, have been used for many years, however, the conflict cases have not shown any steady decline. It seems that the measures practiced in the region focus on short-term alleviation rather than a long-lasting solution ensuring peaceful coexistence of the two species. The study discusses the mitigation and preventive measures of human-elephant conflicts practiced in the state, their efficacy and shortcomings. The study revealed a single “universal model” is not successful to mitigate the concerns; rather a combination of measures is required. An amalgamation of traditional and modern techniques is also suggested. An efficacious operative mitigation plan should be site-specific and based on several local factors including conflict, physiographical, habitat, anthropogenic and other such variables. Thus, a hypothetical model for designing an effective mitigation strategy has been proposed for future researchers and competent authorities to look into. This could be helpful for policy makers to plan effective management practices not only in the region but also elsewhere.
Secondary metabolites of a marine-derived Penicillium ochrochloron (2021-09-09)
Extremophilic fungi have received considerable attention recently as new promising sources of biologically active compounds with potential pharmaceutical applications. This study investigated the secondary metabolites of a marine-derived Penicillium ochrochloron isolated from underwater sea sand collected from the North Sea in St. Peter-Ording, Germany. Standard techniques were used for fungal isolation, taxonomic identification, fermentation, extraction, and isolation of fungal secondary metabolites. Chromatographic separation and spectroscopic analyses of the fungal secondary metabolites yielded eight compounds: talumarin A (1), aspergillumarin A (2), andrastin A (3), clavatol (4), 3-acetylphenol (5), methyl 2,5-dihydro-4-hydroxy-5-oxo-3-phenyl-2-furanpropanoate (6), emodin (7) and 2-chloroemodin (8). After co-cultivation with Bacillus subtilis, the fungus was induced to express (-)-striatisporolide A (9). Compound 1 was evaluated for antibacterial activity against Staphylococcus aureus, Acinetobacter baumannii, Mycobacterium smegmatis, and M. tuberculosis, as well as cytotoxicity against THP-1 cells. The compound, however, was not cytotoxic to THP-1 cells and had no antibacterial activity against the microorganisms tested. The compounds isolated from P. ochrochloron in this study are well-known compounds with a wide range of beneficial biological properties that can be explored for pharmaceutical, agricultural, or industrial applications. This study highlights the bioprospecting potential of marine fungi and confirms co-cultivation as a useful strategy for the discovery of new natural products.
In silico computation of coagulation factor II: a potential water treatment agent against gram negative bacteria (2021-08-18)
Water, as one of the main sources of life, is an important aspect to public health and safety. Up until now there have been many concerns about water pollution especially in developing countries. Heavy polluted water that is not treated well could cause many concerning diseases that can lead to deaths. Contaminants that are of chemical, physical, and biological origins are commonly found in these water sources. Gram negative bacteria (GNB) have been seen to develop multiple drug and antibiotic resistance, causing more fatal infections. This has become a major concern of public health especially as it makes water treatment more challenging. Our study investigates human coagulation factor II that is responsible for blood clotting as a possible method for water treatment against GNB. By investigating the coagulation protein interaction with several bacterial lipopolysaccharides proteins and calculating the binding affinity of the interaction, the results show factor II has a lower binding affinity compared to previously studied factor VII. This shows possibilities of factor II to hydrolyse several gram-negative bacteria to act as a potential treatment against these GNBs.
A review on ethnopharmacological utility, traditional knowledge and phytochemistry of Aristolochia species in Assam, India (2021-08-18)
Aristolochia L. (Aristolochiaceae) is widely used throughout South-East Asia for the treatment of several diseases. Different species of this genus are known by similar local names in Assam. This review aims to provide up-to-date information on Aristolochia species distributed in Assam, including its traditional uses, phytochemical and pharmacological properties, in exploring future therapeutic and scientific potentials. The information on ethnobotany, phytochemistry and pharmacological aspects were collected by performing literature searches. Assam hosts a total of six species of Aristolochia. The taxonomy and distribution are presented. Traditionally the tubers are used by the local people to treat stomach pain, malaria, dysentery, high blood pressure, body pain, urinary tract infections, headache, impotency etc. It has considerable pharmacological properties including antimicrobial, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, anti-diabetic, anti-fertility, anti-venom, anti-diarrhoeal, anti-pruritic, anti-feedant and toxicological activities. Approximately a total of 200 compounds have been isolated from these species. So far, pharmacological investigations are only done on three Aristolochia species, whereas the other three are simultaneously used for the same purposes. Most of the medicinal properties attributed to these Aristolochia, have not yet been investigated and proven under a scientific study. This highlights the importance of Aristolochia as a valuable candidate for future studies.
Persistence, dissipation behavior and health risk assessment of spiromesifen in brinjal (Solanum melongena L.) by LC-MS/MS (2021-08-18)
Brinjal (Solanum melongena) is a versatile crop infected by several insects and pests. For the control of these pests, spiromesifen insecticide has been in use to reduce the damage and increase crop production worldwide. Therefore, a field trial was conducted to study dissipation and persistence behavior of spiromesifen 22.9% w/w SC in/on brinjal at the recommended dose (RD) 96 g a.i./ha and double to recommended dose 192 g a.i./ha (2RD). The quantitative analysis of spiromesifen was performed using ultra-high performance liquid chromatography- tandem mass spectrometry (UHPLC-MS/MS). Samples were processed by the Quick, Easy, Cheap, Effective, Rugged and Safe (QuEChERS) method. The analytical method was validated using various parameters viz., linearity (R2≥0.99), sensitivity (LOD and LOQ), accuracy (recovery=70-120%) and precision (RSD≤20%). The spiroemsifen persisted up to 3 days at RD and 5 days at 2RD. The dissipation half-life (DT50) of spriromesifen was 3.64 and 4.10 days at RD and 2RD in brinjal, respectively. However, residues of spiromesifen measured from soil at 0th (2 hr) day and 10th day were below the limit of quantification (BQL). The waiting period deciphered for spiromesifen applied in brinjal was 1 day at the recommended dose. Further, health risk assessment (health risk index<1 and percent health index<100) was performed on the basis of field trial which suggested that the application of spiromesifen in brinjal crop at recommended dose is safe for the end-users.
Persistence, dissipation and health risk assessment of combi-product profenofos and cypermethrin in/on sapota under sub-tropical agro-climatic conditions in India (2021-08-18)
Sapota, a prominent and economically important fruit crop of India is susceptible to several species of insect and mite pests. Several pesticides formulations are used to control the pest damage in sapota. The present investigation was aimed to study the dissipation and persistence behaviour of combi-product profenofos 40% + cypermethrin 4% (44EC) at the standard dose (SD) (1162 g a.i. ha-1+106 g a.i. ha-1) and double to standard dose (2×SD) (2324 g a.i. ha-1+212 g a.i. ha-1) in/on sapota under tropical agro-climatic conditions of South Gujarat in India. Prior to quantitative analysis of pesticide residue on Gas chromatography with electron captured detector (GC-ECD), the modified Quick, Easy, Cheap, Effective, Rugged and Safe (QuEChERS) based method was validated on its accuracy, precision, linearity and sensitivity. Profenofos persisted in sapota up to 30 days with the half-lives of 5.65 and 7.34 days at SD and 2×SD, respectively. Cypermethrin dissipated at a rapid pace and was below quantitation limit (BQL) on 7 days at either dose of application; the half-life values recorded were 3.27 and 4.43 days at SD and 2×SD, respectively. This is the first case study that reflects 14 days as a waiting period after the last spray of combi-product (44EC) at standard dose facilitates the residue-free sapota fruits. Further, the health risk index (HRI<1) and Health Index (HI %< 100%) indicates that the application of combi-product profenofos 40% + cypermethrin 4% (44EC) at standard dose could not pose any health risk to Indian consumers.
Phylogenetic analysis of the genus Conringia Heist. Ex Fabr. (Brassicaceae) in Turkey based on nuclear (nrITS) and chloroplast (trnL-F) DNA sequences (2021-09-07)
In this study, phylogenetic analysis of Turkish Conringia (Brassicaceae) species was conducted based on nuclear ribosomal DNA (nrITS) and chloroplast DNA (trnL-F) sequences. In addition, the relationships between the sequences of some Brassicaceae family species retrieved from NCBI, and Conringia species were documented. All of the plant specimens were collected at their flowering and vegetation periods from different regions of Turkey, and brought to the laboratory. Total genomic DNA was extracted using the GeneMark kit. In PCR analyses, ITS4 and ITS5A primers were used for the amplification of the nrITS region, while the trnLe and trnLf primers were used for the cpDNA trnL-F region. The DNA sequences obtained were then edited using BioEdit and FinchTV, and analyzed using MEGA 6.0 software. Neighbor joining (NJ) and bootstrap trees were constructed in order to identify the relationships among Conringia taxa. The nrITS sequences ranged between 573 and 672 nucleotides, while the trnL-F sequences ranged between 346 and 764 nucleotides. The divergence values of nrITS sequences differed between 0.177 and 0.00 and divergence values of trnL-F sequences differed between 0.902 and 0.00. NJ tree generated using nrITS and trnL-F sequences consisted of two clades. In trees generated with both the nrITS and trnL-F sequences, C. orientalis, C. grandiflora and C. austriaca appeared within the same group. In addition, according to the phylogenetic analysis results obtained with other Brassicaceae species, it is revealed that the Conringia genus is polyphyletic.
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