Inclusion of oil palm fronds (OPF) pellets (200 g kg-1 DM) in a complete animal feed has been found to increase the unsaturated fatty acid content in ruminants. However, given the low-fat content of OPF (21 g kg-1 DM), changes in ruminal fatty acid (FA) metabolism will only result in nutritionally relevant differences in animal tissues when OPF enhances conservation of polyunsaturated fatty acid (PUFA) from external sources. Additionally, given the low metabolisable energy value (4.9 to 6.5 MJ (ME) kg-1 DM) of OPF, supplementation of OPF with an energy-dense feed compound such as fat is of interest. Thus, this approach could also be used in combination with other dietary fat supplementation strategies to further manipulate fatty acid concentration of ruminant tissues and products for human consumption.
Large parts of lowland areas in Southeast Asia were submerged in seawater some 4300 years ago due to a rise in sea level. During this period, the coastal plains in the region were pyritised. Agricultural development led to oxidisation of the pyrite (FeS2) which in turn allowed weathered mineral silicates to be present in the sediments. High levels of Al and/or Fe are thus present in the soils/water that affect plants and aquatic life. Rice grown on the so-called acid sulfate soils suffer from low pH and Al 3+ and/or Fe2+ toxicity, with yields below the national average. The critical pH and Al concentration for rice growth is 6 and 15-30 uM respectively. The soil become infertile due to high concentrations of acid sulfate. Application of ground magnesium limestone (GML) or basalt in combination with bio-fertiliser fortified with phosphate-solubilising bacteria (PSB) can help reduce the acid sulfate. The PSB not only excrete organic acids that inactivate Al and Fe via chelation, but also increase soil pH to the level that precipitates Al as inert Al-hydroxides. Additionally, rice roots are able to excrete organic acids under the presence of high concentration of Al and/or Fe, which further reduces the availability of Al and Fe in the water.
Acid sulfate soil, aluminium toxicity, iron toxicity, rice, sustainable production
Oil palm (Elaeis guineensis Jacq.) is one of the most important and under-utilised non-wood biomass in Malaysia. This study examined the effect of low molecular weight phenol formaldehyde (Lmw-PF) resin impregnation on the mechanical and physical properties of oil palm trunk wood. The oil palm wood was treated using the following steps: by drying, resin impregnation, soaking and re-drying of specimens using different resin concentrations and treatment times. The determination of the modulus of elasticity, modulus of rupture and dimensional stability of treated oil palm wood were carried out using British standards. Results indicated that both resin concentration and soaking time significantly enhanced dimensional stability of the treated oil palm wood. Water absorption and thickness swelling of the treated wood displayed reduction with different soaking periods and resin concentrations with the best results of 7.37% and 5.08% respectively. Soaking had a significant effect on the bending properties of treated oil palm wood and showed 1.5 and 1.8 times improvement in modulus of elasticity and modulus of rupture respectively. It can be thus concluded that resin impregnation followed by soaking of oil palm wood is a viable method to improve its overall physical and mechanical properties as well as its dimensional stability.
Durability, impregnation, oil palm wood, physical and mechanical properties, resin concentrations, soaking periods
The objective of this study was to enhance the hypo-osmotic swelling test evaluation when
it reads under light microscope using 5% formaldehyde-fixed sperm solution buffer (FSSB).
Twenty four ejaculates were collected from six crossbred bulls using electro-ejaculator
(EE). Tris-egg yolk extender was used to cryopreserve the semen. Concentration, volume,
motility, morphology and viability rates of fresh semen were evaluated and samples were
cryopreserved in liquid nitrogen. After two weeks of liquid nitrogen treatment (freezing),
the motility, morphology and viability rate of the semen were evaluated. In order to carry
out a hypo-osmotic swelling test, post-thaw semen was divided into four aliquots based on
period of incubation (30 or 60 minutes) adding FSSB to half the samples. The components
of FSSB were 5% formaldehyde and 1% eosin-nigrosin stain in PBS. Results showed
(61.48 ±0.89%) resulted in higher percentage (P<0.05) of total membrane intact
compared with F
(54.40 ±1.34%) and N
(53.96±1.17%), but did not differ (P>0.05)
(60.90±0.70%). In conclusion,
adding 10 µl of FSSB after 60 minute of
incubation with hypo-osmotic swelling
solution (HOSS) will enhance evaluation
of the hypo-osmotic swelling test (HOST)
under light microscope.
The olive tree not only provides fruits but also wood and nutrition such as oleuropein.
Olive leaves can be made into tea by 'withering' (drying) the fresh leaves. An experiment
was conducted to observe the growth and evaluate the antioxidant content of olives using
different types of fertilisers. The plants were grown under partial shading and full exposure
to sunlight (50% and 0% - no shading); NPK fertiliser or commercial compost was used
to enrich the planting media. The results showed that plants that grew in the shade are
taller and have better foliage, while use of commercial compost resulted in better growth
of branches and leaves. Older leaves contained higher levels of oleuropein and ascorbic
acid. Exposure to sunlight increased ascorbic acid content in older leaves compared with
that of shaded plants.
This study examined the effect of enhancing solubility of curcumin, from Turmeric
Oleoresin (TO), in boosting the productive performance of broiler chicken. Solid
dispersion (SD) technique was used to enhance the solubility of curcumin for use in the
broiler chicks’ diet. The curcumin solubility (TOPSD) was prepared by mixing TO with
carrier (Polyethylene glycol, PEG400) and adsorbent (Banana powder, BP) at the ratio of
1:1:3 by SD technique. High performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) was used to
determine solubility of the mixture. The result showed that solubility rate of crude curcumin
noticeably increased with carrier and adsorbent (P<0.05). This mixture was used to improve
productive performance of broiler chickens. Two hundred and forty Arbor Acres chicks
were randomly allotted to 10 groups. Each group was replicated 6 times (4 chicks per
replication). The effects of sex (120 males and 120 females) and five levels of TOPSD (0,
0.2, 0.4, 0.6 and 0.8 % of diet) were examined in treatments by 5×2 factorial randomly. All
chicks were raised for six weeks. Food and water were provided ad libitum. The results
showed that increased levels of TOPSD reduced average daily feed intake (ADFI), improved
feed conversion ratio (FCR) (P<0.05), but without any effect (P>0.05) on average daily
gain (ADG) when compared with the control group. The sex of the chicks and treatment
combination (the level and sex) had no (P>0.05) effect on productive performance.
Heavy metal pollution is a big problem in the aquaculture sector. Phytoremediation is one
of the innovative approach to clean up the polluted water. The purpose of this research
was to study the translocation of heavy metal (Cu), and its elimination using the mangrove
plant, Avicennia marina. The study was conducted in Tapak Tugurejo, a coastal area in the
northern part of Semarang City, Indonesia, where the water was polluted by heavy metals
discharge (Cu) from industries nearby, at the upstream of the Tapak River. Samples of
A. marina parts (roots, leaves, litter), sediment and water were collected and analysed to
determine total Cu concentration. Results showed the plants of A. marina has the ability
to translocate Cu metal in their tissues, respectively Cu concentrations in litter > leaf >
root. Therefore, litter has the ability to eliminate metals in the environment through the
defoliation process. The results also showed that Concentration Factor (CF) of Cu between
water and sediment was 500.5 to 897.7, while the Bio Concentration Factor (BCF) between
sediment and roots was in the range of 0.03 to 0.13. The Translocation Factor (TF) in roots
and leaves ranged between 0.4 and 1.1. Hence, translocation of Cu metals was evident in
the roots and leaves of A. marina, and the absorbed Cu was then eliminated via the litter .
Potato Dextrose is the most commonly used media for the culturing of fungi. In this study, local crops were used as a substitute for potato. The growth of yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae) in broth media and molds (Aspergillus flavus TISTR 3366, Bipolaris oryzae DOAC 1760, Fusarium semitectum DOAC 1986 and Penicillium sp.) on agar media was examined. Four crops (cassava, potato, sweet potato and taro) were utilised as nutrient source in fungal media to result in four types of dextrose media while commercial potato dextrose media was used as the control. S. cerevisiae recorded the highest level of growth with 2.76 × 107 cells/mL when cultured in Sweet Potato Dextrose Broth at 25% sweet potato, 2% dextrose, initial pH 4.6 and agitated at 250 rpm at 27°C. Additionally, for the mold growth, Sweet Potato Dextrose Agar demonstrated significantly higher mycelial growth than commercial Potato Dextrose Agar while Taro Dextrose Agar showed similar positive result, except for F. semitectum DOAC 1986. This study showed that sweet potato and taro have a strong potential for use as alternative nutrient substitutes in fungal media production for yeast and mold growth.
Due to the issues of species substitution and product mislabelling of beche-de-mer worldwide, this study aimed to identify the species of seven gamat-based beche-de-mer specimens from Kuah, Langkawi Island, Kedah, Malaysia based on ossicle shapes and non-protein-coding 12S mitochondrial rRNA gene sequences. In general, ossicles were well extracted from the specimens. At least eight ossicle shapes were observed i.e. large I-shaped rod, perforated plate, table, C-shaped rod, button, rosette, I-shaped rod and X-shaped rod. Except for button, I-shaped rod and X-shaped rod, the other five ossicle shapes are common in Stichopus horrens. However, the species status could not be resolved at this level due to the presence of uncommon ossicle shapes and the physical features of the specimens could not be used as supporting data as they were different from the live or unprocessed sea cucumber. In this study, 12S mitochondrial rRNA gene sequences were analysed using the Basic Local Alignment Search Tool programme for Nucleotides (blastn), resulting in the species identification of the beche-de-mer specimens as S. horrens, known locally as gamat emas (golden sea cucumber) with 96-99% similarity (an average of 98%). The phylogenetic trees based on the Neighbour-Joining method, Maximum Parsimony method and Maximum Likelihood method indicated that all 12S mitochondrial rRNA gene sequences of the beche-de-mer specimens clustered with the reference samples of S. horrens from Pangkor Laut, Pangkor Island, Perak, Malaysia, supporting the BLASTN results and confirming their species status as S. horrens. Furthermore, 10 partial 12S mitochondrial rRNA gene sequences of the reference samples and the beche-de-mer specimens of S. horrens were registered with the GenBank (Accession No.: KX879628-KX879637). Overall, the findings suggested that the species identification of the beche-de-mer specimens using 12S mitochondrial rRNA gene sequence gave better inference than ossicle-shape identification. The outcomes of this study benefit enforcement agencies in their work of monitoring and overcoming the issues of species substitution and product mislabelling of beche-de-mer or commercial dried sea cucumber in Malaysian markets as well as in global markets.
Selection response is affected by genetic variability and heritability. High selection response is achieved by broad genetic variability and or high heritability. The objective of this study is to estimate the selection response of soybean lines. Forty soybean lines derived from "Sinabung" × MLGG 1087 cross were grown in tidal swamp land in Barito Kuala, South Kalimantan. Broad genetic variability was shown by seven agronomical characters, such as days to flowering and maturing, number of branches per plant, number of reproductive nodes per plant, number of filled pods per plant, weight of 100 grains, and grain yield. Narrow genetic variability was shown by plant height. High heritability was shown by days to flowering (0.923), days to maturity (0.896) and weight of 100 grains (0.762); where their selection responses were 4.34 days, 3.53 days and 1.21 g, respectively. Moderate heritability was shown by plant height (0.435) and number of filled pods per plant (0.226) with the selection response of 6.41 cm and 1.82 pods. Low heritability was shown by number of branches per plant (0.121), number of reproductive nodes per plant (0.160) and grain yield (0.056) that lead selection response of 0.10 branch, 0.58 nodes and 0.03 t/ha grain. In this study, the characters with high genetic variability but low heritability produced low selection response. It indicates that the role of heritability was greater than genetic variability.