Volume 1, Issue No 1, December 2014

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Sensitivity analysis of the detection of Ganoderma boninense infection in oil palm using FTIR
Arnnyitte Alexander; Coswald Stephen Sipaut; Khim-Phin Chong; Ping-Chin Lee; Jedol Dayou. 2014. Transactions on Science and Technology, 1(1), 1 - 6
Abstract One of the main issues in oil palm plantation is the infection of Ganoderma boninense causing basal stem rot disease. Huge monetary losses were reported in the industry by the main producer countries such as Malaysia and Indonesia. Many efforts have been carried out to detect the fungus at the early stage of infection with less practical achievement so far. Recently, detection of the pathogenic fungi using Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR) has been investigated by the authors. This paper examines the sensitivity of the detection method and correlates the results with the practicality in field scenario. It was found that percentage content of G. boninense cells in oil palm tissues of 5% is detectable using FTIR technique. The results presented in this study indicated that FTIR could be a solution to early detection of G. boninense infection in oil palm especially if the instrument can be made portable and robust for field application. View article

Chitin-Binding Mistletoe Lectin (MChbL) Exhibits Entomotoxic and Cytotoxic Properties
Eka Khurtsidze; Nino Keburia; Mariam Gaidamashvili. 2014. Transactions on Science and Technology, 1(1), 7 - 17
Abstract Apamea sordens Hufn. and Agrotis segetum Schiff. are serious herbivore Lepidoptera pests on various agricultural crops causing substantial crop losses throughout the world. They are responsible also for significant damage of stored seeds and post-harvest loss of agricultural production. Plant agglutinins (lectins) as natural plant defense agents, have been implicated as antibiosis factors against insects and are promising candidates for biological pesticides. The insecticidal activity of Viscum album chitin-binding lectin (MChbL) against Apamea sordens Hufn. and Agrotis segetum Schiff. larvae was investigated. MChbL exhibited proteinase inhibitory and chitinase activities and affected larval development and survival at different growth stages. The rate of adults successfully emerging from pupae fed on MChbL was from 5% to 33%, when incorporated into an artificial diet at a level of 0.01% (w/w). MChbL decreased larval total midgut protease activity by 60% at a concentration of 0.25 μg/μl. Toxic properties of chitin-binding mistletoe lectin (MChbL) against Lepidoptera pests and human peripheral blood lymphocytes have been investigated. High concentrations of MChbL exhibit cytotoxic properties. Lectin was no cytotoxic to human peripheral blood cells at the concentrations of 10 µg/ml and exhibited similar results as ConA at sub-mitogenic concentration. In short term feeding trials MChbL did not retarded animal mass growth and did not affected overall conditions of male or on female animal groups at the concentrations up to 0.1% (w/w). N-terminal amino acid sequencing of MChbL showed homology to plant pathogenesis-related (PR) protein families with 60% homology. MChbL could be useful in the development entomotoxic biopecticides for the control of Lepidoptera pests at dose-dependent manner. View article

Agent Architecture: An Overview
Kim On Chin; Kim Soon Gan; Rayner Alfred; Patricia Anthony; Dickson Lukose. 2014. Transactions on Science and Technology, 1(1), 18 - 35
Abstract Agent architecture has been one of the core components in building an agent application. Agent architecture is considered as the functional brain of an agent in making decision and reasoning to solve problem and achieving goals. This paper reviews some of the existing agent architectures such as logic-based architecture, reactive architecture, BDI architecture, hybrid architecture, cognitive architecture, and semantic architecture. The purpose of this study is to identify distinctive features of the different types of agent architectures and how they are implemented to solve real world problems. View article

Evaluation of Microbial Contamination on Contact Lenses among University Students
Ping-Chin Lee; Eric Tzyy Jiann Chong; Salehah Abu Nor. 2014. Transactions on Science and Technology, 1(1), 36 - 42
Abstract Microbial keratitis is affecting approximately 4 to 5 per 10,000 contact lens wearers worldwide and the severity of the disease depends on the type of microbial species contaminating the contact lens. As the number of contact lens wearer increases globally, including Malaysia, in the past ten years, there is a need to identify the type of microbial species that contaminates contact lenses among Malaysians, especially among college students. Therefore, this study was conducted to evaluate microbial contamination on contact lenses among university students and the habits of the contact lens wearers within the university facility. A total of 67 pairs used contact lens samples were collected. CFU/ mL was calculated based on colonies grown on nutrient agar to represent the microbial population density. Gram staining was performed for all pure cultures with different morphologies. Two major groups of contaminants with different morphologies were subjected to identification using biochemical tests. Our results suggested that 41.79 % of the samples collected were contaminated with microbes and the contamination status was significantly different between genders and duration of contact lens wearing per usage (p < 0.05). Besides, monthly disposable contact lenses had the highest contamination rate with a mean of 2.41 x 103 CFU/ mL when compared to daily and quarter-yearly (3 months) contact lenses. Gram staining showed that 88.47 % of microbial contamination was Gram negative, mainly represented by Vibrio spp. and Aeromonas spp.. Our study unexpectedly found that contact lenses among university students were contaminated with microbes that might be found in the tap water used to wash their hands. View article

Effect of Phenolic Acids to Ganoderma Viability in Oil Palm Tissues and Soil
Wei-Ren Jee; Khim-Phin Chong. 2014. Transactions on Science and Technology, 1(1), 43 - 49
Abstract This paper presents the potential of phenolic acids; caffeic acid (CA), syringic acid (SA) and 4-hydroxybenzoic acid (4-HBA) in Basal Stem Rot (BSR) disease suppression of oil palm. Four concentrations of phenolics combinations were tested which were 0.4 g a.i., 0.8 g a.i., 1.2 g a.i. and 1.6 g a.i. of each CA, SA and 4-HBA. Infected palms with similar BSR disease intensity, age, soil topography and condition were selected for this trial. Assessment on Ganoderma viability was based on ergosterol content, possible isolation of the fungus on Ganoderma Selective Medium (GSM) from treated palm and Colony Forming of Ganoderma on GSM from treated soil. No ergosterol was found in healthy palms but in contrast ergosterol was detected in infected oil palm tissues before and after the treatments of phenolic acids. However, the untreated and infected palms showed significantly higher mean difference of ergosterol (0.6395 µg g-1) compared to infected palms but treated with phenolic acids. Combinations of phenolics with 1.6 g a.i. suppressed Ganoderma colonization the most (-0.4379 µg g-1 of ergosterol), though, the suppression was no significant in comparison to other treatments such as 0.4 g a.i., 0.8 g a.i. and 1.2 g a.i.. Ganoderma was isolated on GSM from all oil palm tissues either treated or untreated with the phenolics acids suggesting the pathogen was suppressed but not killed after treated. However, there was no colony of G. boninense form on the GSM from the soil samples collected after observation for one month. View article

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