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Abstract  

A radiochemical procedure for separation of carrier-free22Na from bulk of Mg is described. The method involves the initial removal of bulk of Mg as Mg(OH)2 by means of ammonia followed by separation of the last traces of Mg by means of extraction with a cationic liquid exchanger, di-(2-ethylhexyl) phosphoric acid (HDEHP) in cyclohexane.

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Abstract  

Three commonly used medicinal plants, e.g., Adhatoda vasica, Cassia fistula, and Withania somnifera grown in two contrasting environmental conditions, namely from copper mining site and from control site corresponding to soil not contaminated with Cu, to understand correlations between high Cu bioaccumulation in medicinal plants on their antioxidant activities. Concentrations of some essential metals, e.g., Cr, Mn, Fe, Cu, Zn, and Se in the leaves of these plants were measured by instrumental neutron activation analysis. The Cu levels in the samples from mining site were in the range of 32.6 to 57.2 mg/kg, which were 5–7 folds higher than the control samples, while Cr levels were about 2-folds higher in the mining site. Speciation studies of Cr revealed negligible content of toxic hexavalent Cr. Antioxidant assay of these plants from both the sampling sites, measured as total phenolic content, total flavonoid content, 2,2′-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl, free radical scavenging ability, and chelating ability with ferrous ions exhibited maximum activity for A. vasica, while that of W. somnifera was minimum. However, the variations in the antioxidant activities for each medicinal plant species from mining site and control site did not reveal significant differences.

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A study on the seasonal incidence of the beetle Scaphisoma tetrastictum Champ and the relationship of various meteorological factors with its incidence in oyster mushroom ( Pleurotus ostreatus Jacq. Ex Fr.) was conducted in the Department of Plant Pathology, Assam Agricultural University, Jorhat (India) during 1999–2000. Seasonal variation in the population density of adult beetles and per cent fruit body infestation by the adults and grubs were observed. Incidence of the beetle was recorded from March to November 1999 revealing the highest number (12.35) of adults per fruit body and per cent infestation (29.96) during July, 1999. The mushroom remained free from beetle incidence during the winter months. Beetle population per fruit body (10.43) and extent of infestation (26.03%) were higher during monsoon (June to August) where as the pre-monsoon period (March to May) recorded the beetle population and per cent infestation of 4.64 and 9.61%, respectively. Beetle population showed positive significant correlations with maximum ( r = 0.7460, P < 0.05) and minimum temperature ( r = 0.6884, p < 0.05) and number of rainy days ( r = 0.9102, p < 0.01). Per cent fruit body infestation by the beetle exhibited positive significant correlations with maximum temperature ( r = 0.8032, p < 0.05), minimum temperature ( r = 0.7666, p < 0.05), total rainfall ( r = 0.6823, p < 0.05) and number of rainy days r = 0.9299, p < 0.01).

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Abstract  

Several parts of plants are used in herbal and Ayurvedic medicines of India. The different elemental constituents at trace levels of these plant parts play an effective role in the medicines prepared. Elemental composition of different parts (root, bark, leaf, seed) of some medicinal plants of North Eastern India has been determined by using proton induced X-ray emission (PIXE). A total of 14 elements, Mn, Fe, Co, Ni, Cu, Zn, Ga, As, Br, Rb, Sr, Y, Zr and Pb have been measured. Their concentrations were found to vary in different samples. Medicinal properties of these plant samples and their elemental distribution have been correlated.

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Biological control of die-back of bottle brush (Callistemon citrinus) caused by Botryodiplodia theobrome was made with the application of antagonistic agents like Trichoderma viride, T. lignorum, T. harzianum, Aspergillus niger and Penicillium citrinum. The effect of volatile and non-volatile antibiotics of Trichoderma origin on growth inhibition of the die-back pathogen was studied. T. harzianum showed maximum growth inhibition (75.33%) of the pathogen through mycoparasitism and the non-volatiles produced by the same agent exhibited its excellent antagonism to the growth of the pathogen (91.11%) under in vitro condition and that the effect was also proved to be durable.

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Abstract  

Three ferromanganese crusts from different locations of the Indian Ocean were analysed by neutron activation analysis using thek 0 method (k 0 NAA method) for studying the distribution of some trace elements along with Fe and Mn. Another crust from the Lau basin of the Pacific Ocean was investigated for comparison of the influence of different oceanic conditions on the trace element distributions in ferromanganese crusts. Variation in Co concentration along with the Mn/Fe ratio were discussed in terms of the hydrogenous/hydrothermal nature of the crusts. The normalised REE content was used to identify possible anomalies. The observed Ce anomaly is discussed in the light of the depositional environment. The precision and accuracy of the method were confirmed by measuring the elemental concentrations in a USGS nodule standard NOD A-1.

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Abstract  

The iron bearing phases present in a ferromanganese nodule from the Central Indian Ocean have been determined using57Fe Mössbauer spectroscopy. The Mössbauer results have been corroborated by XRD, IR and TG-DTA studies. The Mössbauer spectrum of a ferromanganese nodule shows a broad line width which indicates the presence of more than one iron bearing paramagnetic oxide or oxyhydroxide phases where iron is present as Fe3+. -FeOOH has been distinctly characterised as one of the iron bearing phases in the nodule. Other oxyhydroxide and oxide phases of iron in the nodule have been ruled out. A typical paramagnetic doublet persists even at very high temperature which has been proposed to be due to iron(III)phosphate. Formation of solid solution of Mn2O3–Fe2O3 has been observed in the heat treated nodule at 1073 K, which has been characterised by the Mössbauer technique.

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Journal of Radioanalytical and Nuclear Chemistry
Authors: R. Dutta, M. Sudarshan, S. Bhattacharyya, V. Vijayan, S. Ghosh, V. Chakravortty, and S. Chintalapudi

Abstract  

Ferromanganese nodules found on the Ocean bed are complex heterogenous mixtures of several components. Two nodules from Central Indian Ocean Basin (CIOB) were analysed by proton induced X-ray emission (PIXE) technique using 3UD Tandem pelletron. The precision and the accuracy of this technique for chemical analyses has been confimed by analysing USGS Geological Standards. Thick sample targets were bombarded by 3 MeV protons for the multielemental analysis. GUPIX-96 software was used for spectral data analysis. Quantative estimate of K, Ca, Tl, V, Mn, Fe, Co, Ni, Cu, Zn, Ga, Ge, As, Rb, Sr, Y, Zr, Mo, Ba, Ce, Tl and Pb has been ascertained. The occurrence of Ga, Ge, Rb and Zr in nodules from this region is reported for the first time. The role of manganese and iron oxide phases in determining the uptake of various trace elements from ocean water and bottom sediment pore water has been discussed.

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Siderophores are low molecular weight (<1000 D) iron chelating compounds produced by microorganisms. Production of siderophore is a device of antagonism as by virtue of the capacity of siderophore production, a microorganism competes for Fe (III) with the others. Production of siderophores by 9 different soil fungi and wood-decay fungi was studied following CAS - assay and CAS - agar plate assay. Optimization for the production of siderophores was done by varying the levels of pH and Fe (III) concentrations in the low nutrient medium. All the test fungi could produce siderophores, though the degree of production recorded to be very low both in Botryodiplodia theobromae and in Fusarium spp. On the other hand, all the species of Trichoderma showed their excellency in siderophore production. The optimum pH for production of siderophores remained at neutral pH level though the range varied from pH 6.0-8.0. The optimum range of the concentration of Fe (III) required for siderophore production was recorded to be 1.5-21.0 µM. However, the stress condition of iron might be a decisive factor for siderophore production.

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