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Biology is a study of living objects and their life processes. It examines all aspects of living organisms such as their occurrence, classification, internal and external structure, nutrition, reproduction, inheritance, etc. The term “biology” is commonly replaced by the terms “life sciences” and “biological sciences.” There are dozens of branches of biology. Some of the major ones include:

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Abstract

Incidence rates of human Campylobacter jejuni infections are progressively increasing globally. Since the risk for the development of post-infectious autoimmune diseases correlates with the severity of the preceding enteritis and campylobacteriosis treatment usually involves symptomatic measures, it is desirable to apply antibiotic-independent compounds to treat or even prevent disease. Given its health-promoting including anti-inflammatory properties carvacrol constitutes a promising candidate. This prompted us to test the disease-alleviating including immune-modulatory effects of carvacrol prophylaxis in acute murine campylobacteriosis. Therefore, human gut microbiota-associated IL-10−/− mice were orally challenged with synthetic carvacrol starting a week before C. jejuni infection and followed up until day 6 post-infection. Whereas carvacrol prophylaxis did neither affect gastrointestinal pathogen loads, nor the human commensal gut microbiota composition, it improved the clinical outcome of mice, attenuated colonic epithelial cell apoptosis, and dampened pro-inflammatory immune responses not only in the intestinal tract but also in extra-intestinal organs including the liver and the spleen. In conclusion, our preclinical placebo-controlled intervention study provides convincing evidence that oral carvacrol pretreatment constitutes a promising option to mitigate acute campylobacteriosis and in turn, to reduce the risk for post-infectious complications.

Open access
European Journal of Microbiology and Immunology
Authors:
Niraj Jatin Patel
,
Sahaja Thippani
,
Jasmine Jathan
,
Gauri Gaur
,
Janhavi Y. Sawant
,
Jay M. Pandya
, and
Eva Sapi

Abstract

Borrelia burgdorferi, the causative agent of Lyme disease, has recently been demonstrated to infect and enhance the invasive properties of breast cancer cells, while also influencing the expression of inflammatory chemokines (CXCL8 and CXCL10). This study investigates the presence of B. burgdorferi in invasive breast cancer tissues using commercially available, FDA-approved breast cancer tissue microarrays consisting of 350 ductal, 32 lobular, and 22 intraductal invasive breast carcinomas, alongside 29 normal breast tissues. Employing fluorescent immunohistochemical staining and high-resolution imaging, the findings revealed that approximately 20% of invasive lobular and ductal carcinomas, followed by 14% of intraductal carcinomas, tested positive for B. burgdorferi, while all normal breast tissues tested negative. PCR analysis further confirmed the presence of B. burgdorferi DNA in breast cancer tissues. Moreover, 25% of B. burgdorferi-positive tissues exhibited expression of both chemokines, CXCL8 and CXCL10, which was not observed in B. burgdorferi-negative tissues. Analysis of available patient data, including age, indicated a correlation between older patients and B. burgdorferi-positive tissues. This study validates the presence of B. burgdorferi in invasive breast cancer tissues and highlights the involvement of key CXCL family members associated with inflammatory processes.

Open access

Abstract

In this work, an assessment of effective solvents and extraction methods was carried out to recover the bioactive compounds from hawthorn fruit (Crataegus monogyna Jacq.). Extractions assisted by heat, microwave, and ultrasound were carried out using various organic solvents (methanol, ethanol, and isopropanol). pH differential, Folin–Ciocalteu's, and aluminum chloride methods were used to determine total monomeric anthocyanin (TMA), total phenolic compound (TPC), and total flavonoid content (TFC), consecutively. Ferric Reducing Antioxidant Power (FRAP), 2,2-Diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl Hydrate (DPPH), and 2,2′- azino- bis (3-ethylbenzothiazoline-6- sulfonic acid) (ABTS) assays were used to measure the antioxidant activity (AA) of the extracts. The outputs revealed that extraction methods and solvents significantly affect anthocyanin concentration, TPC, TFC, AA, and color values of hawthorn fruit extracts. Due to the highest recovered TMA (0.152 ± 0.002 mg ECy3Gl/g of dry weight), TPC (49.14 ± 0.38 mg gallic acid equivalents/g of dry weight), and TFC (18.38 ± 0.19 mg quercetin equivalents/g of dry weight) contents, the ultrasonic-assisted extraction is superior to heat and microwave-assisted extractions. Accordingly, it was also observed that the methanol solvent is more profound than ethanol and isopropanol. Further, the bioactive compounds' content and the extracts' antioxidant activity are shown to be highly correlated. Thus, hawthorn extracts are considered to have antioxidant properties because of their concentrated bioactive compounds.

Open access

Abstract

Vitamin C plays a multifaceted role in various biological processes and is well-known to facilitate pleiotropic activities in both innate and adaptive immune responses, where the antioxidant capacity of vitamin C is most likely highly relevant since immune responses mainly occur in reducing environments. Beyond its antioxidant properties, vitamin C can enhance the transcription potential of genes by promoting DNA demethylation through ten-eleven-translocation (Tet) methylcytosine dioxygenases, which have been recently demonstrated to be critical for the development and differentiation of T cells. In this minireview, we will provide a broader overview on the impact of vitamin C on signaling and regulatory activities in both innate and adaptive immune cells. Particularly, we will summarize recent findings on the decisive role of finely tuned vitamin C concentrations for T cell development, T helper cell differentiation, and optimal T cell-mediated immune responses.

Open access
European Journal of Microbiology and Immunology
Authors:
Péter Pallós
,
Márió Gajdács
,
Edit Urbán
,
Yvett Szabados
,
Klaudia Szalai
,
Lívia Hevesi
,
Anna Horváth
,
Anna Kuklis
,
Devina Morjaria
,
Wajiha Iffat
,
Helal F. Hetta
,
Nicola Piredda
, and
Matthew Gavino Donadu

Abstract

The clinical role of Acinetobacter baumannii has been highlighted in numerous infectious syndromes with a high mortality rate, due to the high prevalence of multidrug-resistant (MDR) isolates. The treatment and eradication of this pathogen is hindered by biofilm-formation, providing protection from noxious environmental factors and antimicrobials. The aim of this study was to assess the antibiotic susceptibility, antiseptic susceptibility and biofilm-forming capacity using phenotypic methods in environmental A. baumannii isolates. One hundred and fourteen (n = 114) isolates were collected, originating from various environmental sources and geographical regions. Antimicrobial susceptibility testing was carried out using the disk diffusion method, while antiseptic susceptibility was performed using the agar dilution method. Determination of biofilm-forming capacity was carried out using a microtiter-plate based method. Resistance in environmental A. baumannii isolates were highest for ciprofloxacin (64.03%, n = 73), levofloxacin (62.18%, n = 71) and trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole (61.40%, n = 70), while lowest for colistin (1.75%, n = 2). Efflux pump overexpression was seen in 48.25% of isolates (n = 55), 49.12% (n = 56) were classified as MDR. 6.14% (n = 7), 9.65% (n = 11), 24.65% (n = 28) and 59.65% (n = 68) of isolates were non-biofilm producers, weak, medium, and strong biofilm producers, respectively. No significant differences were observed between non-MDR vs. MDR isolates regarding their distribution of biofilm-producers (P = 0.655). The MIC ranges for the tested antiseptics were as follows: benzalkonium chloride 16–128 μg mL−1, chlorhexidine digluconate 4–128 μg mL−1, formaldehyde 64–256 μg mL−1 and triclosan 2–16 μg mL−1, respectively. The conscientious use of antiseptics, together with periodic surveillance, is essential to curb the spread of these bacteria, and to maintain current infection prevention capabilities.

Open access
Acta Alimentaria
Authors:
V. László
,
D. Szakos
,
V. Csizmadiáné Czuppon
, and
Gy. Kasza

Abstract

Consumer trust is essential to any market but particularly relevant to the food sector. Sustainable food systems require integration of small-scale food producers, for them consumer trust is pivotal. However, comprehensive measurement of consumer trust regarding local food is a less explored area. Based on the adjusted version of Benson's trust toolkit, local food trust was measured on four levels. This approach, connecting locality/proximity to food-related trust, was tested with a representative quantitative consumer survey (n = 1,001) in Hungary. Interpersonal trust, general organisation trust, local food chain trust, and local food product trust were measured on a 5-point Likert scale. Correlation and boxplot analysis conducted revealed that trust levels correlate significantly but remain independent from demographic characteristics, indicating that trust in local food is not region-, education-, or income-specific amongst Hungarian consumers. A relatively high level of consumer trust was measured for local food products and producers compared to other stakeholders, strengthening the assumption for the proximity-trust relationship regarding food. This is a key factor for small-scale food producers: only shared values with the local community and earned trust can attract customers despite less flexibility with pricing and limited capacity for advertising.

Open access

Abstract

Extensive use of carbapenems may lead to selection pressure for Stenotrophomonas maltophilia (SM) in hospital environments. The aim of our study was to assess the possible association between systemic antibiotic use and the incidence of SM. A retrospective, observational study was carried out in a tertiary-care hospital in Hungary, between January 1st 2010 and December 31st 2019. Incidence-density for SM and SM resistant to trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole (SXT) was standardized for 1000 patient-days, while systemic antibiotic use was expressed as defined daily doses (DDDs) per 100 patient-days. Mean incidence density for SM infections was 0.42/1000 patient-days; 11.08% were were resistant to SXT, the mean incidence density for SXT-resistant SM was 0.047/1000 patient-days. Consumption rate for colistin, glycopeptides and carbapenems increased by 258.82, 278.94 and 372.72% from 2010 to 2019, respectively. Strong and significant positive correlations were observed with the consumption of carbapenems (r: 0.8759; P < 0.001 and r: 0.8968; P < 0.001), SXT (r: 0.7552; P = 0.011 and r: 0.7004; P = 0.024), and glycopeptides (r: 0.7542; P = 0.012 and r: 0.8138; P < 0.001) with SM and SXT-resistant SM incidence-density/1000 patient-days, respectively. Implementation of institutional carbapenem-sparing strategies are critical in preserving these life-saving drugs, and may affect the microbial spectrum of infections in clinical settings.

Open access

Abstract

Lycium barbarum contains a variety of phytochemicals, primarily polysaccharides, and other potent compounds. L. barbarum is a plant that has several uses in contemporary society, including food processing and everyday eating. However, through traditional processing methods the medicinal or edible value of L. barbarum cannot be fully exploited, to further improve the utilisation rate of L. barbarum and enrich the variety of L. barbarum market. The L. barbarum compound beverage, which uses L. barbarum as its primary ingredient, was created through a series of trials, including the creation of tea beverage recipes and research on the most suitable content of stabilisers, flavouring agent formulations and so on. In addition, several validation tests, including those involving hypoglycaemic and lipid-lowering were conducted. The results indicated that 0.1 g mL−1 stabiliser CMC-Na, 0.2 g mL−1 erythritol, 3 g mL−1 citric acid, 8% L. barbarum juice, and 6% chrysanthemum tea cold brew extract were the best combinations for food additive formulations. Additionally, compound beverages have hypoglycemic and lipid-lowering effects. In conclusion, the research and development of L. barbarum compound beverages can not only increase the rate at which L. barbarum is utilised but also offer fresh ideas for the research and development of L. barbarum as they transition from cash crop agricultural products to market-oriented standardised processed products.

Restricted access

Abstract

Prosthetic joint infections (PJIs) are dreaded arthroplasty complications often caused by Staphylococcus aureus. Due to methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) strains or biofilm formation, successful treatment remains difficult. Currently, two-stage revision surgery constitutes the gold standard therapy of PJIs, sometimes replaced or supplemented by debridement, antibiotics, and implant retention (DAIR). Given the dire consequences of therapeutic failure, bacteriophage therapy might be another treatment option. Here we provide a comprehensive literature review addressing the efficacy of phages applied against S. aureus as causative agent of PJIs. The included 17 publications had in common that the applied phages proved to be effective against various S. aureus isolates including MRSA even in biofilms. Experiments with mice, rats, rabbits, and moth larvae confirmed favorable features of phage preparations in PJI treatment in vivo; including its synergistic with antibiotics. Case reports of PJI patients unanimously described the bacterial eradication following, alongside other measures, intravenous and intra-articular phage administration. Generally, no major side effects occurred, but in some cases elevated liver transaminases were observed. To conclude, our review compiled promising evidence suggesting the safety and suitability of phage therapy as an adjuvant to DAIR in S. aureus PJIs, and thus, underscores the significance of further research.

Open access
European Journal of Microbiology and Immunology
Authors:
Kantima Choosang
,
Siriphan Boonsilp
,
Kanyanan Kritsiriwuthinan
,
Palin Chumchuang
,
Nanthawan Thanacharoensakun
,
Aminoh Saai
, and
Sawanya Pongparit

Abstract

Plasmodium vivax is the most prevalent cause of malaria in Thailand and is predominant in malarial endemic areas worldwide. P. vivax infection is characterized by low parasitemia, latent liver-stage parasites, or asymptomatic infections leading to underreported P. vivax cases. These are significant challenges for controlling and eliminating P. vivax from endemic countries. This study developed and evaluated a dot-blot enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) using PvMSP1-42 recombinant antigen for serological diagnosis based on the detection of antibodies against P. vivax. The optimal PvMSP1-42 concentration and dilutions of anti-human IgG horseradish peroxidase (HRP)-conjugated antiserum were tested on 88 serum samples from P. vivax, Plasmodium falciparum and bacterial infection, including healthy individuals. A cut-off titer of 1:800 produced optimal values for sensitivity and specificity of 90.9 and 98.2%, respectively, with an accuracy of 95.5%. The positive and negative predictive values were 96.8 and 94.7% respectively. The results from microscopic examination and dot-blot ELISA showed strong agreement with the 0.902 kappa index. Thus, the dot-blot ELISA using PvMSP1-42 antigen provided high sensitivity and specificity suitable for serodiagnosis of P. vivax infection. The test is a simple and quick diagnostic assay suitable for field testing as it does not require specific equipment or particular skills.

Open access
Acta Alimentaria
Authors:
R. Habibi
,
A. Khosrowshahi Asl
,
L. Roufegarinejad
,
S. Zomorodi
, and
N. Asefi

Abstract

Plant-based proteins are being rapidly explored in the food industry to produce healthy and nutritious foods. Herein, the effects of soy protein isolate (SPI) ratio to oat germ powder (OGP) (0:0, 3.7: 6.3, 5:5, 0:10, 10:0, and 6.3:3.7%) were studied on the physicochemical, colour, rheological, microbial, antioxidant, and sensory properties of wheyless cheese. The results showed that by increasing SPI and OGP levels, ash, white index value, elastic modulus, and complex viscosity decreased, while pH, fat in dry matter, Chroma, and total colour (ΔE) increased. Also, syneresis was only observed in the control sample and was not observed in other samples. Control sample together with sample containing 10% of OGP showed the highest microbial count (i.e., mesophilic bacteria and yeasts-moulds), while samples containing 10% of SPI showed the lowest microbial count. Furthermore, the growth of both coliform and psychrophilic bacteria in all samples was negligible. Based on the results of sensory evaluation, with increasing SPI and OGP, the sensory evaluation score of samples decreased but they were within the acceptable range. According to the results obtained in this study, the combinations of 5% SPI and 5% OGP or 3.7% SPI and 6.3% OGP are recommended to be used in wheyless cheese production.

Restricted access

Abstract

This study investigates the potential of utilising oleosomes extracted from hazelnuts in the formulation of liquid margarines. Aqueous extraction methods were employed to isolate oleosomes from hazelnuts, revealing approximately 83.07% fat and 2.48% protein content in hazelnut oleosomes. The stability of oleosomes at various pH levels (3–10) was examined, showing stability at pH 7 but instability at extreme pH values. Evaluation at pH 7 indicated small particle size (D3,2 ≈ 3.58 μm) and a ζ-potential of approximately −33.8 mV for isolated oleosomes. Subsequently, double emulsions were formulated by substituting traditional oil with varying oleosome concentrations (0–30%) in liquid margarine. Rheological and oxidative analyses of these margarines demonstrated decreased elastic and viscous moduli, hardness, and spreadability, alongside enhanced oxidative stability with increasing oleosome concentration. These findings suggest hazelnut-derived oleosomes offer significant stability advantages over conventional liquid margarine, presenting a promising avenue for functionally enhanced food products in the food industry.

Open access
European Journal of Microbiology and Immunology
Authors:
Verner N. Orish
,
Sylvester Y. Lokpo
,
Precious K. Kwadzokpui
,
Rufai Safianu
,
Aleksandra Marinkovic
,
Stephanie Prakash
,
Chuku Okorie
,
Ricardo Izurieta
,
Rajashree Pandit
, and
Adekunle Sanyaolu

Abstract

Background

Although, several studies have reported abnormal Mean Corpuscular Volume (MCV) values and anaemia associated with malaria infections with a focus on Plasmodium falciparum among patients with complicated and uncomplicated malaria, none has looked at the association with asymptomatic malaria. This study aimed to assess this association.

Methods

We conducted a cross-sectional study using 3 mL of blood samples from 549 children aged 5–17 years attending 5 schools selected in the Volta Region. Semi-structured questionnaires were administered to the children to obtain demographic data. Blood samples were collected to estimate the children's full blood count (FBC) and malaria status. Data obtained were analysed using STATA 15 software. P-values of less than 0.05 were considered statistically significant.

Results

Most of the children in this study (49.9%) had normal MCV (81.3–91.3 fL) with an overall malaria prevalence of 55.6 % (95% CI: 51.3–59.8) and anaemia prevalence of 48.6% (95% CI 44.4–52.9). Most anaemic children had normal MCV (81.3–91.3 fL) (49.8, 95% CI 43.7–56.0). The predicted probability of malaria was highly likely among children with normal MCV (81.3–91.3 fL) but with high variability and uncertainty among those with low MCV (<81.3 fL) and high MCV (>91.3 fL).

Conclusion

This study shows a reduced predicted probability of malaria among children with low and high MCV, playing a protective function against malaria. Further studies are required to elucidate the interaction.

Open access

Abstract

This article presents an analysis of the impact of blanching and Ginkgo biloba extract (GBE) on the volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in Cantonese bacon using gas chromatography-ion mobility spectrometry (GC-IMS). The study aims to investigate how different processing techniques influence the composition of volatile compounds in meat products, thereby contributing to the understanding of flavour release patterns.

The experiment involved dividing pork belly into six groups: conventional (C), heat treatment (H, 50 °C, 15 s), high-temperature treatment (S, 80 °C, 5 s), conventional treatment with GBE (CG, 0.5% GBE), heat composite treatment with GBE (HG, 50 °C, 15 s, 0.5% GBE), and high-temperature heat composite treatment with GBE (SG, 80 °C, 15 s, 0.5% GBE). The researchers identified a total of 36 compounds in the GC-IMS spectrum. The results showed that the ethanol content decreased in the H group samples after blanching treatment, while it increased in the S group samples. The CG, H, HG, and SG groups exhibited more significant changes compared to the C group. The H group had the highest number of VOCs among all the groups. Additionally, the flavour of the H, CG, and HG group products was notably enhanced.

In conclusion, GC-IMS allows for real-time visual analysis of VOCs, and both blanching treatment and the addition of GBE significantly affect the composition of VOCs in the samples.

Restricted access

Abstract

The purpose of the present study was to investigate the phenolic profile, antioxidant capacity, and biological activity of Inula helenium subsp. pseudohelenium extracts, for the first time. Phenolic substances in leaf ethanol (L-EtOH), leaf pure water (L-PW), root ethanol (R-EtOH), and root pure water (R-PW) extracts of I. helenium subsp. pseudohelenium plant were investigated by HPLC. Also, the antimicrobial (hollow agar), antioxidant, antiproliferative, and DNA protective activities of the samples were examined in vitro. Gallic acid was not detected in the extracts, the presence of curcumin was detected only in EtOH extracts. L-EtOH exhibited the best antimicrobial activity. According to the antioxidant results, the L-EtOH extract had an activity profile close to the standard antioxidants in general. It was also found that the L-EtOH extract stabilised the DNA by disrupting the scavenging effect of H2O2+DMSO. According to the antiproliferative activity results, EtOH extracts exhibited the strongest effect, especially against MCF7 cancer cell lines. When evaluated in general terms, it was found that L-EtOH extract showed better activity than other extracts. It is important to conduct more in vivo and in vitro studies after isolating the active components of extracts e.g. L-EtOH, which have good effects in terms of biological activity.

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Abstract

As a byproduct from the deep processing of longan fruit, longan kernel is rich in starch and is a good source for starch production. In this study, the rheological properties of longan kernel starch (LS) extracted by protease-assisted alkali method were investigated. When the shear rate was from 1 to 100 s−1, the pastes containing 4%–7% (w/v) of LS showed a non-Newtonian fluid with a pseudoplastic fluid characteristic. Their shear stress, apparent viscosity, complex viscosity, storage modulus (G′), and loss modulus (G″) positively correlated with starch concentration. The loss factor (tan δ) of all LS pastes was less than 1. At same concentration, LS paste showed a stronger pseudoplastic fluid characteristic and higher elasticity than corn starch and pea starch pastes. Based on this, LS has potential in processing of jelly, soft sweets, ham sausage, and some other sauces.

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A hazai genetikai talajosztályozás megújításának szükségessége - 1.

A nevezéktan és a struktúra korrekcióra szoruló elemeinek azonosítása

The necessity of the renewal of the Hungarian genetic soil classification system - 1.

Identification of the elements of the nomenclature and structure to be corrected
Agrokémia és Talajtan
Authors:
Tibor József Novák
,
Tibor Tóth
,
András Makó
,
Mihály Kocsis
,
Zsófia Bakacsi
,
András Bidló
,
Károly Bartha
,
Szabolcs Czigány
,
Gergely Tóth
,
Adrienn Horváth
, and
Hilda Hernádi

A tanulmány a magyar genetikai osztályozás sok szempontból kritizált rendszerének következetlenségeit, illetve ellentmondásait elemzi azzal a szándékkal, hogy a rendszer fő jellemzőinek: a talajtaxonok elnevezésének és tartalmának megőrzése mellett szakmai párbeszédet indítson a hibák kijavításának lehetőségéről és a rendszer megújításáról.

Rámutattunk a nevében és koncepciójában genetikus, szerkezetében hierarchikus osztályozási rendszer hibrid jellegére: arra, hogy a fő genetikus szempont csak a főtípusok aggregációs szintjén érvényesül maradéktalanul, míg a típusoknál már mintegy egyharmad arányban diagnosztikus szempontok jelentik az elkülönítés alapját. Alsóbb hierarchiaszinteken (altípus, változat) pedig csaknem tisztán diagnosztikus az osztályozás. Listába rendeztük azokat a problémás típus, altípus és változati elnevezéseket, amelyek több hierarchiaszinten azonos névvel, és esetleg eltérő tartalommal fordulnak elő, illetve azonos hierarchiaszinten, de eltérő definíciókkal szerepelnek, vagy éppen szinonímnak tekinthetők, az eltérő elnevezés mögött rejlő azonos tartalom miatt. A vitacikk szándéka, hogy a kiszűrt hibák, következetlenségek széleskörű szakmai egyeztetést követően javításra kerüljenek.

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Abstract

Fruit of rosehip (Rosa canina L.) has high economic, medicinal, and nutritional values. Rosehip is rarely consumed fresh due to limitations of seasonality and short shelf life. They are usually processed, which affects the nutritional and sensory characteristics of rosehip products. Radiation processing along with storage at 4 °C is a way to increase safety and prolong fresh rosehip durability. Rosehip fruits were harvested at enough maturity stage, irradiated at doses of 0 (control), 0.5, 1, and 1.5 kGy, and stored at 25 and 4 °C for 60 days. Gamma irradiation at 1 kGy caused an increase in weight loss during storage for 60 days at 25 °C. Microbial counts, total phenolic contents (TPC), total anthocyanin contents (TAC), ascorbic acid contents (AAC), DPPH scavenging activity, total colour difference (∆Eh ), and sensory properties were acceptable in the sample irradiated at 1 kGy and preserved for 60 days at 4 °C. The amounts of acidity, pH, and total soluble solids (TSS) were not significantly different from the control. Gamma irradiation at 1 kGy and thereafter storage of the irradiated fruit at 4 °C are suggested as minimal processing and storage conditions of rosehip fresh fruit (RFF) for 60 days.

Restricted access

Abstract

Identification of cytotoxic T lymphocyte (CTL) epitopes from tumor related antigens is a promising approach for malignant tumor immunotherapy. TC2N, a recently identified tumor associated antigen from human glioblastoma, is regarded as a promising target of tumor-specific immunotherapy. As one of the most widely used histocompatibility molecules in Chinese is HLA-A*0201, we were able to identify the TC2N peptides that are provided by this molecular type. A panel of antigenic peptides produced from TC2N were predicted by using a computer tool. The binding affinities of three peptides with the highest predicted score to the HLA-A*0201 molecule were evaluated after synthesis. In vitro and in vivo stimulation of the main T-cell response against the predicted peptides. The results demonstrated that TC2N (152-160) was able to release IFN-γ and lyse U251 cells in vitro as well as in vivo by eliciting peptide-specific CTLs. Our results indicated that peptide TC2N (152-160) (RLYGSVCDL) was a novel HLA-A2.1-restricted CTL epitope capable of inducing TC2N specific CTLs in vitro. As TC2N might qualify as a viable target for immunotherapeutic approaches for patients with GBM, we speculated that the newly identified epitope RLYGSVCDL would be of potential use in peptide-based, cancer-specific immunotherapy against GBM.

Open access
Acta Alimentaria
Authors:
I. Tahiri
,
S. de Paz-Cantos
,
A. González-Marrón
,
À. Cartanyà-Hueso
,
E.M. Navarrete-Muñoz
,
J.C. Martín-Sánchez
,
C. Lidón-Moyano
,
H. Pérez-Martín
, and
J.M. Martínez-Sánchez

Abstract

The aim of this study was to assess the association between adherence to the Mediterranean diet and daily leisure screen time. We carried out a cross-sectional study using a representative sample of the Spanish population aged from 3 to 14 years recruited for the 2017 Spanish National Health Survey (n = 4,633). We derived the adherence to the Mediterranean diet according to a modified Mediterranean Diet Score and computed daily leisure screen time. We estimated crude and adjusted prevalence ratios, and 95% confidence intervals (95% CI) of high versus low, high versus medium and medium versus low adherence to the Mediterranean diet, according to categories of daily leisure screen time, using Poisson regression models. We found that the adjusted probabilities of having high adherence to the Mediterranean diet, versus low and medium adherence, were 23% (aPR 0.77; 95% CI 0.69, 0.86) and 14% (aPR 0.86; 95% CI 0.76, 0.97) lower, respectively, in children spending at least 180 minutes of daily leisure screen time in comparison with children spending less than one hour of daily screen time. This association was also observed when stratifying by age, except for children 12–14 years. In conclusion, high leisure screen time may be associated with lower adherence to the Mediterranean diet.

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Abstract

Autophagy is a cellular stress-induced intracellular process, through which damaged cellular components are decomposed via lysosomal degradation. This process plays important roles in host innate immunity, particularly the elimination of intracellular pathogens inside host macrophages. A more detailed understanding of the roles of autophagic events in the effective manifestation of macrophagic antimycobacterial activity is needed. Furthermore, the effects of medicinal plants on macrophagic autophagy response to mycobacterial infection need to be clarified. We herein examined the significance of autophagic events in the manifestation of host immunity during mycobacterial infection, by performing a literature search using PubMed. Recent studies demonstrated that autophagy up-regulated macrophage functions related to the intracellular killing of mycobacteria, even when pathogens were residing within the cytoplasm of macrophages. The majority of medicinal plants potentiated macrophagic autophagy, thereby enhancing their antimycobacterial functions. In contrast, most medicinal plants down-regulate the development and activation of the Th17 cell population, which reduces macrophage antimycobacterial activity. These opposing effects of medicinal plants on macrophage autophagy (enhancement) and Th17 cell functions (inhibition) may provide a plausible explanation for the clinical observation of their modest efficacy in the treatment of mycobacterial infections.

Open access

Abstract

Benzoic acid naturally exists in a variety of plants and fermented foods, and jujube contains natural benzoic acid. This study scrutinises the content of benzoic acid in diverse jujube cultivars, and its modulation by variables such as harvest timing, product types, and drying techniques. The methodology encompasses tracking the progressive augmentation of benzoic acid throughout the maturation process of jujube, with the apex content being 144.4 mg kg−1 in the Junzao cultivar. It further investigates the substantial fluctuations in benzoic acid content in jujube powder under disparate processing conditions, with the zenith content observed in drum-dried jujube powder at 127.6 mg kg−1, and an unexpectedly elevated level of 66.2 mg kg−1 in freeze-dried jujube powder. As long as it is not consumed excessively, it will not cause harm to the human body. The conclusion drawn from this research posits can be employed to resolve consumer grievances, or as a benchmark for testing services for product quality control.

Restricted access

Abstract

Dietary iron intake causes the elevation of ferritin levels, and higher iron intake might improve insulin resistance and cardiovascular diseases. The aim of this study was to determine the relationship between dietary iron intake and serum ferritin levels, insulin resistance, and nutritional status in patients with cardiovascular disease. Health information of individuals were obtained with a questionnaire form. There were a total of 103 patients, 59 male (57.3%) and 44 female (42.7%). Patients also filled a questionnaire on dietary habits, a 3-day food record. There was a statistically significant difference between ferritin quartiles and total cholesterol, HDL-C, non-HDL-C, LDL-C/HDL-C ratio, and TG/HDL-C ratio (P < 0.05). Study data show that dietary iron intake was associated with the elevation of serum ferritin levels (P < 0.05) and this difference was significant in Q1 and Q4 groups in post-hoc analysis. There was a negative correlation between serum ferritin levels and total cholesterol and HDL-C in patients with insulin resistance (r = −0.384, P < 0.05; r = −0.520, P < 0.05). In conclusion we found a strong association between serum ferritin levels and inflammation, causing an oxidative stress, atherosclerosis, and bringing along cardiometabolic diseases such as cardiovascular diseases and type 2 DM.

Open access

Abstract

Staphylococcus aureus infections have already presented a substantial public health challenge, encompassing different clinical manifestations, ranging from bacteremia to sepsis and multi-organ failures. Among these infections, methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) is particularly alarming due to its well-documented resistance to multiple classes of antibiotics, contributing significantly to global mortality rates. Consequently, the urgent need for effective treatment options has prompted a growing interest in exploring phage therapy as a potential non-antibiotic treatment against MRSA infections. Phages represent a class of highly specific bacterial viruses known for their ability to infect certain bacterial strains. This review paper explores the clinical potential of phages as a treatment for MRSA infections due to their low toxicity and auto-dosing capabilities. The paper also discusses the synergistic effect of phage-antibiotic combination (PAC) and the promising results from in vitro and animal model studies, which could lead to extensive human clinical trials. However, clinicians need to establish and adhere to standard protocols governing phage administration and implementation. Prominent clinical trials are needed to develop and advance phage therapy as a non-antibiotic therapy intervention, meeting regulatory guidelines, logistical requirements, and ethical considerations, potentially revolutionizing the treatment of MRSA infections.

Open access

Abstract

Agastache rugosa (Fisch. et Mey.) O. Ktze, also known as “Suhuoxiang” (SHX), has been cultivated for more than three hundred years as a valuable aromatic edible and medicinal plant in Jiangsu Province, China. The volatile compounds of SHX from various habitats were investigated by HS-SPME-GC-MS, detecting sixty-five chemical constituents with menthone, pulegone, and estragole being the major volatile compounds. Their relative contents showed various accumulation tendencies in different growth months by GC-MS, with the relative content of menthone gradually increasing, pulegone content decreasing, as well as estragole content climbing initially before declining. This tendency was supported by quantitative experiments using samples from various habitats, which also revealed that the full-bloom stages exhibited the highest total concentrations of menthone and pulegone. The volatile composition of SHX in various plant organs differed, with palmitic acid being the main volatile component of stems, while menthone and pulegone being the core volatile components of leaves and spikes, implying that leaves and spikes should be separated from the stem to obtain higher drug contents. The current findings provide new information for SHX cultivation and applications.

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A talajspektrális könyvtárak nemzetközi jelentősége és hazai megalapozása

The international importance and national establishment of soil spectral libraries

Agrokémia és Talajtan
Authors:
Ádám Csorba
,
Tamás Szegi
,
Gábor Várszegi
,
Gábor Nagy
, and
Erika Michéli

Napjainkban soha nem látott igény mutatkozik megfelelő mennyiségű és minőségű talajadatra és információra. Spektroszkópiai technológiák a hagyományos laboratóriumi módszerekkel együttesen, párhuzamosan alkalmazva lehetőséget kínálnak a talajfelvételezés idő- és költséghatékonyabbá, valamint környezetkímélőbbé tételére. Jelen munkában lokális, regionális és globális léptékű talajspektrális könyvtárak bemutatása mellett az első országos szintű, az Agrártechnológiai Nemzeti Laboratórium projekt keretében kidolgozásra kerülő, Magyarország talajtani változatosságát reprezentáló spektrális adatbázis létrehozásának koncepcióját mutatjuk be. A spektrális könyvtárak olyan speciális talajadatbázisoknak tekinthetőek, melyek tartalmazzák egy adott terület talajait reprezentáló talajminták hagyományos laboratóriumi módszerrel meghatározott paramétereit, valamint spektroszkópiai módszerrel rögzített spektrumait. A spektrális könyvtárakban tárolt adatok alapján elvégzett, spektroszkópiai kalibrációkra alapozott talajparaméter becslési eljárások lehetőséget kínálnak az adatbázisban szereplő talajminták fizikai-kémiai-ásványtani tulajdonságaihoz hasonló minták paramétereinek spektrális alapú megbízható megbecsléséhez. A hazai spektrális könyvtár alappillérét a Talajvédelmi Információs és Monitoring (TIM) rendszer mintavételezés kezdeti évében (1992-ben) gyűjtött, talajok genetikai szintjeiből vett talajmintákról felvett spektrumokra építjük. A spektrális adatbázist a középső-infravörös (middle-infrared, MIR), valamint a látható- és közeli infravörös (visible and near-infrared, VIS-NIR) tartományban, a Global Soil Laboratory Network (GLOSOLAN) iránymutatásai alapján rögzített spektrális adatokra építjük. A folyamatosan bővülő spektrális könyvtár, és az erre az adatbázisra épülő talajtulajdonság-becslő eljárás lehetőséget fog kínálni számos fizikai és kémiai paraméterének megbízható meghatározására, ezzel (számottevő többletköltség nélkül) nyújt lehetőséget a jelenlegi laboratóriumi kapacitás növelésére.

Open access

Abstract

Background

Doxycycline-based prevention of bacterial sexually transmitted infections (STIs) has been assessed in various studies and has been recommended by the European AIDS Clinical Society to be proposed to persons with repeated STIs on a case-by-case basis. However, while good preventive effects could be shown for Chlamydia trachomatis and Treponema pallidum in Europe, no reliable prevention against doxycycline resistance-affected bacterial causes of STIs like Neisseria gonorrhoeae and Mycoplasma genitalium was confirmed.

Methods

In a modelling-approach, we assessed potential beneficial effects even against the latter microorganisms in case of optimized adherence with doxycycline prevention. These effects were modelled for Germany in comparison to traditional prevention schemes like condom-based STI-prevention and testing-as-prevention.

Results

With estimated risk reduction in the ranges of 86% for N. gonorrhoeae and of 82% for Mycoplasma genitalium, expectable preventive efficacy similar to alternative preventive approaches could be calculated in case of optimized adherence with doxycycline prevention. In case of repeated risk exposure, the preventive potential of condom-based prevention was decreased compared to both optimized doxycycline prevention and testing-as-prevention.

Conclusions

As suggested by the applied modelling, the preventive effect of optimized doxycycline prevention against bacterial STIs is in a similar range, like other common prevention strategies.

Open access

Abstract

Soil cultivation techniques can change the physical properties of soil and have the potential to influence the growth and productivity of crops. In the 2022 season, a research study was carried out on Gypsfreous soil in the College of Agriculture fields at Tikrit University. The purpose of the study was to investigate how the physical properties of the soil are influenced by three different plow types and varying plowing speeds. The study was planned using split plots within a Complete Randomized Blocks Design, with three types of plows (moldboard plow, disc plow, and chisel plow) and three tractor speeds (3.8, 5.8, and 7.6 km h−1) as the experimental treatments.

The experiment's findings indicated that the moldboard plow resulted in a greater reduction in bulk density compared to the disc plow. Consequently, the soil's bulk density decreased, and the percentage of porosity increased. On the other hand, the chisel plow had the lowest soil-specific resistance value and the highest soil volume disturbed value. The speed of operation above 3.8 km h−1 proved to be the most effective in reducing bulk soil density, increasing soil porosity, and reducing specific soil resistance. However, at a speed of 7.6 km h−1, the soil volume disturbed was significantly higher than at other speeds. Additionally, the experiment's findings demonstrated that the moldboard plow, operating at a speed of 3.8 km h−1, was significantly more effective than other methods in decreasing the soil's bulk density, increasing the porosity percentage, and reducing the specific soil resistance. Conversely, the chisel plow, working at a speed of 7.6 km h−1, had a significant advantage in achieving the highest value for the volume of soil disturbed.

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Abstract

Pulmonary infections of patients with cystic fibrosis (CF) or in intensive care units are frequently caused by the Gram-negative opportunistic pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Since these bacteria are commonly inherently multidrug-resistant (MDR) and hence, antibiotic treatment options are limited, bacteriophages may provide alternative therapeutic and prophylactic measures in the combat of pneumonia caused by P. aeruginosa. This prompted us to perform a comprehensive literature survey of current knowledge regarding effects of phages applied against pulmonary P. aeruginosa infections. The included 23 studies revealed that P. aeruginosa specific phages lyse and eliminate the bacteria even in case of biofilm production in vitro, whereas application to mice and men resulted in mitigated P. aeruginosa induced clinical signs and enhanced survival. Besides distinct host immune responses, no major adverse effects limiting therapeutic and/or prophylactic phage application were noted. However, the immune system and antibiotics generate synergies with phages due to the mutable sensitivity of P. aeruginosa. In conclusion, results summarized in this review provide evidence that phages constitute promising alternative treatment options for lung infections caused by MDR P. aeruginosa. Further studies are needed, however, to underscore the efficacy and safety aspects of phages application to infected patients including immune-compromised individuals.

Open access

Abstract

Aim

The ability of neutrophil CD16 (nCD16) expression to predict outcome in complicated intra-abdominal infections (cIAIs) has not yet been studied; therefore we aimed to evaluate its potential prognostic value in such patients.

Methods

Between November 2018 and August 2021 a single-center prospective study was performed in the Department of Surgical Diseases at a University Hospital Stara Zagora. A flow cytometry was used to measure the levels of nCD16 before surgery and on the 3rd postoperative day (POD) in 62 patients with cIAIs.

Results

We observed a mortality rate of 14.5% during hospitalization. Survivors had significantly higher perioperative expression of nCD16 than non-survivors (P = 0.02 preoperatively and P = 0.006 postoperatively). As predictor of favorable outcome we found a good predictive performance of preoperative nCD16 (AUROC = 0.745) and a very good predictive performance of postoperative levels (AUROC = 0.846). An optimal preoperative threshold nCD16 = 34.75 MFI permitted prediction of survival with sensitivity and specificity of 66.7% and 77.8%, respectively. A better sensitivity of 72.5% and specificity of 85.7% were observed for threshold = 54.8 MFI on the 3rd POD.

Conclusion

Perioperative neutrophil CD16 expression shows a great potential as a predictor of favorable outcome in patients with cIAIs.

Open access
European Journal of Microbiology and Immunology
Authors:
Alma Rosa Pérez-Álamos
,
Marisela Aguilar-Durán
,
Sergio Estrada Martínez
,
Agar Ramos-Nevárez
,
Carlos Alberto Guido-Arreola
,
Antonio Sifuentes-Álvarez
,
Sandra Margarita Cerrillo-Soto
,
Raúl Graciano Ibarra
, and
Cosme Alvarado-Esquivel

Abstract

We aimed to determine the association between the seropositivity to Toxoplasma gondii and the ABO and Rh blood groups in 2,053 people. ABO and Rhesus blood groups and anti-T. gondii IgG and IgM antibodies were determined using commercially available assays. Of the 2,053 people studied, 171 (8.3%) were positive for anti-T. gondii IgG antibodies. Sixty-five (38.0%) and 36 (21.1%) of these 171 individuals had high anti-T. gondii IgG antibody levels (≥150 IU mL−1) and anti-T. gondii IgM antibodies, respectively. We found the following prevalences of T. gondii infection among the ABO groups: 8.5% in group A, 4.3% in group B, 4.7% in group AB, and 8.9% in group O (P = 0.19). The prevalences of T. gondii infection among Rh groups were: 8.4% in the Rh-positive group and 7.1% in the Rh-negative group (P = 0.58). Logistic regression analysis showed that the frequencies of ABO and Rh blood groups were similar (P > 0.05) among people with positive and negative serology for anti-T. gondii IgG antibodies, with high (≥150 IU mL−1) and lower (<150 IU mL−1) levels of anti-T. gondii IgG antibodies, and with positive and negative serology for anti-T. gondii IgM antibodies. Results does not support an association between T. gondii infection and ABO and Rh blood groups.

Open access

Abstract

The aim of this study was to optimise the microencapsulation efficiency of propolis phenolic compounds by double emulsion solvent evaporation technique (W1/O/W2). The solvent/sample ratio and the polymer and surfactant concentration parameters were optimised using response surface methodology (RSM) through Box–Behnken Design (BBD). For each parameter studied, total phenolic content encapsulation efficiency (TPCEE), free radical scavenging activity (DPPH), and ferric reducing antioxidant power (FRAP) were evaluated. The results showed that the optimal parameters were: 31.60 mg mL−1 for sample/solvent ratio, 606.28 mg mL−1 for poly(ε-caprolactone) (PCL) concentrations, and 2.05 g mL−1 for poly(vinyl alcohol) (PVA) concentration. The optimum values obtained were: 84.62% for encapsulation efficiency of phenolic content, 51.89% for DPPH, and 48,733 mg Trolox Equivalent/100 g dry weight for FRAP. The experimental checking of results revealed the validity of elaborated models and their suitability for the prediction of both responses. The developed mathematical models have expressed a high level of significance through RSM optimisation processes for phenolic antioxidants of propolis.

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Abstract

Platycranus metriorrhynchus Reuter, 1883, the first representative of the predominantly Holomediterranean plant bug genus, Platycranus Fieber, 1870 is reported as a new element of the Hungarian true bug fauna. Diagnostic characters and bionomics of the species are discussed.

Open access

Abstract

“Feed the global population and regenerate the planet.”

The conditions necessary for the implementation of the above commonly used slogan did not exist 10–15 years ago. We did not have access to the information and databases that would have allowed us to increase yields for the purpose of feeding the growing population. While increasingly meeting sustainability requirements and regenerating the Earth. Anthropocentrism, the belief that humans are superior to everything else, benefits humans by exploiting human greed and ignorance, which is a dead end for both individuals and societies. Only humans can ignore the dynamic equilibrium processes of nature and disregard the consequences that adversely affect future generations. Ecocentric agricultural practices have several prerequisites. It is important for the academic sphere to recognize its significance. Another fundamental challenge is the continuous monitoring of the production unit and its close and distant environment for the purpose of decision preparation using Big Data. The Internet of Things (IoT) is a global infrastructure that represents the network of physical (sensors) and virtual (reality) “things” through interoperable communication protocols. This allows devices to connect and communicate using cloud computing and artificial intelligence, contributing to the integrated optimization of the production system and its environment, considering ecocentric perspectives. This brings us closer to the self-decision-making capability of artificial intelligence, the practice of machine-to-machine (M2M) interaction, where human involvement in decision-making is increasingly marginalized. The IoT enables the fusion of information provided by deployed wireless sensors, data-gathering mobile robots, drones, and satellites to explore complex ecological relationships in local and global dimensions. Its significance lies, for example, in the prediction of plant protection. The paper introduces small smart data logger robots, including the Unmanned Ground Vehicles (robots) developed by the research team. These can replace sensors deployed in the Wireless Sensor Net (WSN).

Open access

Abstract

Human infections with the food-borne zoonotic enteropathogen Campylobacter jejuni are increasing globally. Since multi-drug resistant bacterial strains are further on the rise, antibiotic-independent measures are needed to fight campylobacteriosis. Given its anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory properties the polyphenolic compound resveratrol constitutes such a promising candidate molecule. In our present placebo-controlled intervention trial, synthetic resveratrol was applied perorally to human gut microbiota-associated (hma) IL-10−/− mice starting a week before oral C. jejuni infection. Our analyses revealed that the resveratrol prophylaxis did not interfere with the establishment of C. jejuni within the murine gastrointestinal tract on day 6 post-infection, but alleviated clinical signs of campylobacteriosis and resulted in less distinct colonic epithelial apoptosis. Furthermore, oral resveratrol dampened C. jejuni-induced colonic T and B cell responses as well as intestinal secretion of pro-inflammatory mediators including nitric oxide, IL-6, TNF-α, and IFN-γ to basal levels. Moreover, resveratrol application was not accompanied by significant shifts in the colonic commensal microbiota composition during campylobacteriosis in hma IL-10−/− mice. In conclusion, our placebo-controlled intervention study provides evidence that prophylactic oral application of resveratrol constitutes a promising strategy to alleviate acute campylobacteriosis and in consequence, to reduce the risk for post-infectious autoimmune sequelae.

Open access

Abstract

Hungary is a Central European country that is rich in medicinal and aromatic wild plant species; in rural livelihoods, the collection, use, process, and trade of these plants are traditionally important contributors. However, due to several recent changes touching the sector, the natural ecosystems, biodiversity, and collectors - who generally belong to poorer social groups – are affected negatively.

The paper aims to introduce the Hungarian herbal sector from a holistic perspective, including its economic, environmental, and human dimensions, with a particular focus on sustainability. In this context, the purpose of the article is to discover this field as comprehensibly as possible and present it from both theoretical and practical aspects. Another objective is to collect the best practices and feasible solutions from the field in connection with promoting a harmonious, as well as economically prosperous relationship between nature and local people. This integrated approach helps show the industry's strengths and advantages, as well as its weaknesses and challenges. Based on the findings, the paper attempts also to propose some recommendations for the future.

Open access
Acta Alimentaria
Authors:
X. Bai
,
H.F. Gao
,
X. Li
,
Y.L. Li
,
M.Z. Lan
,
L. Li
,
Z.D. Zhao
,
Z.B. Li
, and
J. Wang

Abstract

As research advances, it is generally acknowledged that non-Saccharomyces yeast contribute to the addition of aromatic compounds during mead fermentation. In this experiment, eight different non-Saccharomyces strains and Saccharomyces cerevisiae co-fermentation, their aroma composition, and basic physicochemical parameters were investigated. More than 30 compounds with favourable impact were discovered using solid-phase microextraction (SPME) coupled to gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS). Co-fermentation of non-Saccharomyces spp. and S. cerevisiae can affect the concentration of volatile compounds, so that the mead presents different aroma characteristics. Co-fermented meads of Wickerhamomyces anomalus strains and S. cerevisiae (Wa 27-Sc and Wa 5-Sc) had higher alcohol, acids, aldehyde, and ester concentrations than those fermented with S. cerevisiae alone. In terms of taste, Wa 27-Sc was superior to Wa 5-Sc. Overall, the Wa 27-Sc received the highest score for its strong secondary aroma and good mouthfeel. The results show that the W. anomalus Wa 27 strain has a good potential to produce high quality mead.

Restricted access

Abstract

The study investigates the antimicrobial effects of the Hypericum crenulatum ethanolic (HCE) extract against 14 different food pathogens and their biofilm-forming abilities in response to HCE treatment. The phenolic acid composition of the HCE extract was also determined using an HPLC-DAD detector. The antimicrobial activity of HCE extract was assessed using the disc diffusion and microdilution methods. According to the findings, the methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus ATCC 43300, Listeria monocytogenes RSKK 472, and Listeria innocua ATCC 33090 strains exhibited the lowest minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) values at a concentration of 2 μg mL−1. Based on the disc diffusion test results, the largest zone of inhibition of HCE extract against foodborne pathogens was seen against Bacillus cereus, and the diameter of the inhibition zone increased with the concentration of HCE extract (P < 0.05). In terms of phenolic acid composition of HCE extract, the phenolic acids with the highest and lowest amounts were caffeic acid (59.92 mg g−1) and p-coumaric acid (13.61 μg g−1), respectively. Our study determined that the HCE extract demonstrated antimicrobial, bactericidal, and antibiofilm activities against some foodborne pathogens. These effects reveal its potential for improving food safety by inhibiting the growth of these pathogens.

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„Két lábbal a földön, avagy miként próbál a talajtan válaszokat adni a globális kihívásokra”

Beszámoló a HUN-REN ATK Talajtani Intézetének Magyar Tudomány Ünnepe előadónapjáról

Agrokémia és Talajtan
Author:
Kitti Balog
Restricted access
Progress in Agricultural Engineering Sciences
Authors:
Donald Bimpong
,
Lois Amponsah Adofowaa
,
Ama Agyeman
,
Abena Boakye
,
Ibok Nsa Oduro
,
Ellis William Otoo
, and
John-Lewis Zinia Zaukuu

Abstract

Peanut butter and yoghurt are targeted for adulteration intended at consumer deception. This study aimed to fingerprint and detect peanut butter and yoghurt adulteration with cassava flour and starch using Near Infrared Spectroscopy (NIRS) in a quasi-experimental approach. Ingredients for laboratory sample preparation were obtained from the Kumasi Metropolis. Peanut butter was adulterated at 1, 3, 5, 10, 15, 20% w/w and yoghurt at 0.25, 0.5, 1, 3, 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 45, 50% w/w. Selected concentrations mimicked practices on the market. Marketed products were randomly sampled from six markets in the Kumasi Metropolis to validate the study models. Samples were scanned with a hand-held NIRS in triplicates. Chemometric (Principal Component Analysis (PCA), Linear Discriminant Analysis (LDA) and Partial Least Square Regression (PLSR) models) statistical methods were employed to develop classification and prediction models. Peaks with spectral bands such as 1050 , 1200 and 1450 nm were observed for peanut butter and 990–1100 nm, 1100–1200 nm and 1300–1408 nm were observed for yoghurt in the NIR spectrum. Some yoghurt brands were suspected of containing cassava starch, while Peanut butter from the different markets differed based on classification models. Cassava flour and starch concentrations were quantitatively predicted by PLSR with an R2 CV of 0.98 and an error of 0.9 g/100 g (low error).

Restricted access
European Journal of Microbiology and Immunology
Authors:
Ellis Kobina Paintsil
,
Wycliffe O. Masanta
,
Annika Dreyer
,
Leonid Ushanov
,
Stella I. Smith
,
Hagen Frickmann
, and
Andreas E. Zautner

Abstract

Campylobacter infections and campylobacteriosis-associated post-infectious sequelae are a significant global health burden that needs to be addressed from a specific African perspective. We conducted a comprehensive literature search on NCBI PubMed to compile a comprehensive narrative review article on Campylobacter infections in Africa, focusing on key aspects in human and veterinary medicine as well as food hygiene. We specifically focused on the epidemiology of enteropathogenic Campylobacter spp. in sub-Saharan and North Africa considering antimicrobial susceptibility. The most significant sequela resulting from molecular mimicry to Campylobacter surface structures is the Guillain-Barré syndrome, which was mainly examined in the context of limited studies conducted in African populations. A dedicated subsection is allocated to the limited research on the veterinary medically important species Campylobacter fetus. There are significant differences in the composition of the gut microbiome, especially in rural areas, which affect the colonization with Campylobacter spp. and the manifestation of campylobacteriosis. There may be a problem of overdiagnosis due to asymptomatic colonization, particularly in the detection of Campylobacter using molecular biological techniques. To reduce the colonization and infection rate of Campylobacter, we propose implementing several control measures and urge further research to improve the current understanding of the peculiarities of campylobacteriosis in Africa.

Open access

A talaj katabolikus aktivitás mintázatának elemzése mikrorespirációs (MicroResp) módszerrel

Analysis of soil catabolic activity patterns by micro-respiration (MicroResp)

Agrokémia és Talajtan
Authors:
Tibor Szili-Kovács
,
Márton Mucsi
,
Anna Füzy
,
Tünde Takács
, and
Andrea K. Borsodi

A talaj mikrobiális közösségének funkcionális diverzitása a talaj ökoszisztéma szolgáltatások jelentős részéhez hozzájárul, sok esetben meghatározó jelentőségű. Többféle kísérleti és elméleti megközelítés közül a katabolikus aktivitás-mintázat mikrorespirációs – MicroResp™ – módszerrel történő megközelítését mutatjuk be. A módszer a régebbről ismert szubsztrát-indukált respiráció több-szubsztrátos, mikrotiter lemez alapú kiterjesztése, amivel a talaj mikroba-közösség in-situ közösségi-szintű fiziológiai mintázata határozható meg. Mivel az egyes mikroorganizmusok szubsztrát-hasznosítása eltérő, a mikroba-közösség aktuális összetételétől, abundanciájától függően változó a szubsztrát hasznosítási mintázat egy-egy talajminta esetében. Az alkalmazott szubsztrátok köre tetszőleges, rendszerint egyszerű cukrok, aminosavak, aminok, karbonsavak. A módszer gyors, érzékeny, megbízható, ezért alkalmazása tervezett kísérletekben és talajmonitoring programokban egyaránt javasolható.

Open access

Abstract

Medication-related osteonecrosis of the jaw (MRONJ) is an increasingly common consequence of antiresorptive treatment, which often leads to the development of necrotic exposed bone surfaces with inflammatory processes affecting the jawbone. Although the development of MRONJ is often associated with the inflammatory response or infections caused by the colonizing members of the oral microbiota, the exact pathogenesis of MRONJ is still not fully understood. In the present paper, we aimed to provide additional, microbiological culture-supported evidence, supporting the “infection hypothesis” that Actinomyces spp. and related organisms may play an important pathogenic role in the development of MRONJ and the resulting bone necrosis. In our case series, all patients presented with similar underlying conditions and anamnestic data, and have received antiresorptive medications (bisphosphonates or a RANK ligand (RANKL) inhibitor) to prevent the occurrence or progression of bone metastases, secondary to prostate cancer. Nevertheless, a few years into antiresorptive drug therapy, varying stages of MRONJ was identified in the mentioned patients. In all three cases, quantitative microbiological culture of the necrotic bone samples yielded a complex microbiota, dominated by Actinomyces and Schaalia spp. with high colony counts. Additionally, our followed-up case series document the treatment of these patients with a combination of surgical intervention and long-term antibiotic therapy, where favourable clinical responses were seen is all cases. If the “infection hypothesis” is valid, it may have significant consequences in the preventative and therapeutic strategies associated with this disease.

Open access

Abstract

The soaking step of dry pulse products' – e.g. chickpeas' – food processing is a time consuming process. Soaking time can be significantly reduced by ultrasonic treatment or using higher processing temperatures. The effect of ultrasonic treatment can be investigated by examining the soaking water characteristics. Ultrasound-assisted soaking of chickpeas was performed at 25, 35 and 45 °C, respectively. Additionally, control samples were also prepared without ultrasonic treatment at the same temperatures. The dynamics of the fitted curve clearly shows the relationship namely the higher the treatment temperature, the faster the hydration of the raw material for both untreated and treated groups. In contrast to control group, swelling rate of 2.00 – except the group 45 °C – is not achieved during ultrasound-assisted soaking. In case of treated group, the swelling rate was about 1.90 for all temperatures applied. The ANOVA test shows that the color of the ultrasonically treated samples was significantly different compared to the control (F (5;12) = 207.86; P < 0.001). Average dry matter content and °Brix value were significantly higher in the ultrasound treated group compared to the control in case of all temperatures. This may indicate the destructive effect of ultrasound, which may cause more components to dissolve out of the raw material by the end of the soaking process.

Open access

Abstract

The objective of our work was to analyze the differences between four nut pastes, which were the following: walnut, peanut, pistachio, and tahini (sesame). The process technology of them is unknown, however, all the products contain 100% nut without any additives or flavoring.

The paste samples were measured at 25 ± 0.2 °C. The apparent viscosity at a 10 1/s shear rate during flow curve recording, and the dynamic viscosity at a constant 20 1/s shear rate was determined by viscosity measurement with the use of the MCR302 modular compact rheometer. The L*a*b* color components were determined by ColorLite sph850 spectrometer, finally, the particle sizes and shapes of the samples were analyzed by the high-speed image analysis instrument QICPIC.

The apparent viscosity and the average dynamic viscosity values of the four nut pastes were significantly different from each other. Differences were found between each paste according to the L*a*b* parameters. The complex structures of the particles are detailed and measurable, whereby the lengths and diameters of the particles can reliably be determined and fine deviations between the samples are detected. The sphericity decreases slightly with increasing particle size which means that bigger particles are more irregularly shaped.

Open access

Abstract

With growing attention to health and lifestyle changes, functional foods have become crucial and in demand. These foods are a rich source of probiotics and prebiotics, but most probiotic products are dairy-based, making them inappropriate for people with lactose intolerance or milk protein allergies. Nevertheless, egg white offers a viable substitute and is considered one of the best sources of functional proteins. As an alternative food matrix, they come highly recommended for those who are hypersensitive to dairy products or who follow a high-protein diet, such as athletes. In this context, egg-white drink with different carbohydrate sources, including monosaccharide (fructose) and oligosaccharide (fructooligosaccharide), was fermented by Lacticaseibacillus casei 01. After 24 h of fermentation, the total cell count was higher than 8 log10 CFU mL−1 thus, the egg white drink was suitable for L. casei 01 to grow. Additionally, the survival of L.casei 01, the pH value, and the rheological properties of fermented beverages within three weeks of refrigerated storage were also investigated. Throughout the storage period, the control samples exhibited considerably lower cell count and higher pH values compared to the samples with carbohydrate sources, also, samples containing the same carbohydrate source showed no noticeable changes. Viscosity measurements of the studied samples showed a shear thickening behaviour during the time.

Open access

Abstract

In recent years response surface analysis has been increasingly used to optimise membrane separation. It has many advantages, such as reducing the number of experiments to be performed, which requires lower energy consumption and significantly less laboratory work. For more accurate data analysis and forecasting, mathematical models are used that analyse the relevance of the factors examined and the interaction effects between the factors. In this research, two experimental designs that use response surface methodology are presented, namely, the central composite design and the Box–Behnken design. After the general characterisation of the experimental designs, their application in membrane technology is presented.

Open access

Abstract

Tomato (Solanum lycopersicum L.) is grown worldwide in open fields and greenhouses in a range of climate conditions. Hedgerows are a type of agroforestry systems that monitors ecological and influence microclimate conditions. An experiment was conducted at the Soroksár experimental field of the Hungarian University of Agriculture and Life Sciences in 2022 to investigate the influence of hedgerow technology on tomato plant leaves, N, P, K, chlorophyll, and carotene mineral levels from different distances, Exposed sides W1-3m, W2-9m and W3-15m and Protected sides NP1-3m, NP2-9m and NP3-15m, meters from the hedgerow trees.

The results investigate potassium and carotene, as well as chlorophyll b levels, are less differed among the protected and exposed side of the hedgerows trees, while the others were impacted to a certain extent; nitrogen and chlorophyll content was generally higher on the exposed side regardless of variety, while in the case of phosphorus adverse effects were observed. Distance from the hedge showed similar patterns for all traits. The results will help to better understand the impact of alternate technologies on tomato production in open-field conditions.

Open access

Abstract

Polyphenols from agro-industrial waste particularly of fruit origin are a reliable source of antioxidants and antimicrobials that can be used as natural food additives. Organic solvents play an important role in extracting the polyphenols, however, inefficiency in exerting bioactivity and interference with the organoleptic properties are among the reasons that hinder their use as food additives. These problems can be alleviated by purification. In this study, the effect of resin types and elution solvent for purification of the apple pomace extracts on total phenolic content (TPC) and antioxidants were investigated. Crude ethanolic extracts were purified using amberlite resins (XAD7HP and FPX66) in a glass column (25 × 310 mm). The sorption flow rate was 2 Bed volume (BV) per hour, rinse 2 BV per hour, and desorption was 2 BV per hour. Final wash and regeneration were each done by 2 BV per hour. Polyphenol content and antioxidant capacity were quantified spectrophotometrically using Folin-Ciocalteu and Ferric reducing ability of plasma (FRAP) assays respectively. Polyphenol recovery was 50% in XAD7HP (Lowest) using ethanol and 69% in FPX66 (Highest) using acetone. For the case of FRAP recovery, 76% (Lowest) was observed in FPX66 using ethanol while 93% (Highest) was observed in XAD7HP using acetone. Conclusively, FPX66 is the ideal resin for the purification of apple pomace extracts for enhancing antioxidant activity compared to XAD7HP. Further, acetone seems to be a good desorption solvent compared to ethanol.

Open access
Progress in Agricultural Engineering Sciences
Authors:
Munkhnasan Enkhbold
,
Attila Lőrincz
,
Majd Elayan
,
László Friedrich
,
Attila Solymosi
,
Balázs Wieszt
,
Kornél Jáni
, and
Adrienn Tóth

Abstract

This study investigates the effect of 2% lactic acid and 2% ascorbic acid mixture on the quality parameters of red deer meat and beef. After treatment samples were stored at 4 ± 1 °C. The following meat quality parameters were evaluated: pH, color, and microbiological count on days 1, 7, 14, and 21. The results showed that at the end of the experiment, the pH of the treated samples was slightly higher than the non-treated samples, indicating that the lactic acid and ascorbic acid mixture had a mild acidifying effect on the meat. The color of the treated and non-treated samples did not show any significant difference. However, the microbiological count in the treated samples was lower than the non-treated samples. These findings suggest that an acid mixture could be used as a natural preservative to enhance the microbial safety of red deer meat and beef.