Thursday, September 25, 2008

Soy-wonder anticancer agent for reproductive health

You have heard it before,eat your fruit and vegetables,it is good for you!Well,it is true.Eating more broccoli,cauliflower,grapes,onions,and soy beans may help to protect you from cancer.It is not just because of the nutrients they contain,but it is more likely because of these chemicals found in these foods.These chemicals are called 'phytochemical'.Phytochemicals are actually health benefiting compounds in food that cause reduction of particular degenerative disease.There are predominately found in certain categories of food called functional food influences specific physiological functions in the body,providing benefits to health,well-being or performance on an individual,beyond its regular nutrition.For example
From tofu and tacos to baby formula and burgers,soy products have swept the nation as a healthy source of protein,with a reputation for being all natural and good for you.Soybeans contain an impressive array of phytochemicals,the most interesting of which are known as isoflavones,a natural chemical that mimics estrogen,the female hormone.Mounting evidence points to the fact that eating soy foods may reduce risk of ovarian,breast and even prostate cancer.Research suggests that soy isoflavones act in four distinct ways:as estrogens and antiestrogens,as cancer-enzyme inhibitor,as antioxidant and as immune enhancers.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Commercial potential of mas cotek

The technology to domesticate mas cotek both under open and containerized planting systems and development of standardized,safe and effective extract of mas cotek will help in the large scale production of the raw materials required by herbal manufactures.This will ensure that the quantity and quality of the materials meet the minimal requirements specified by herbal manufacturers.Mas cotek can be one of the commercial alternative crops for tobacco farmers on bris sandy soil.The commercial potential is very high since the demand for mas cotek raw materials by the manufacturers are currently very high and the plant is highly adaptable to bris sandy soil.Biochemical studies conducted showed that mas cotek leaves contain o.o4% of meratanol.This compounds has the potential to be used as a chemicals marker or biomarker due to the significant amounts of meratanol in the leaves.An analytical method for analyzing the moretenol content by using gas chromatography mass spectrometer was developed.Result obtained also showed that the total polyphenol content of the leaves was higher in the upper parts of the plants.This information will be helpful in developing the harvesting strategies for both the open and field planting of mas cotek.

Technology mechanization system for vegetable production under greenhouse and open field

Conventional manual vegetable farming in the open field and greenhouse is labour intensive,time consuming and inefficient.It is frequently associated with low yield and poor quality production.The constraints of conventional vegetable farming are high labour requirements in land clearing,ploughing,soil milling,bed forming,mulch laying,transplanting,seeding,fertilizing,chemical spraying,weeding,watering,harvesting and transporting.Therefore,a mechanization system package has been developed to adress these constraints.The system used the readily available prime movers and implements with some modifications to the system before appling to various type of vegetables production in small open field and also greenhouse.Small four-wheel or two-wheel tractor as a prime mover used in this mechanization system to provide take off that operates with various implements attached to them.The implements used were plough,rotorvator,soil miller,bed former,fertilizer applicator,transplanter,seeder,boom sprayer,weedier,harvester and trailer.The developed mechanization system requires additional costs in machinery acquisition,maintenance and fuel.However,with proper planning,managements and sufficients area of cultivation made,the production technically feasible and economically viable.

Resveratrol-the cutting edge of dietary phytochemical research

One of the most dynamic areas in the phytochemical research is on the super dietary phytochemical resveratrol.Resveratrol is the first dietary phytochemical to have solid evidence behind it showing that it blocks or stops many stages of cancer.Resveratrol not only prevents cancer,buts it is also being proposed as an additional treatment for cancer.Resveratrol can act on cancer cells in many diverse ways,from blocking estrogen and androgens to modulating genes.Unlike chemotherapeutic drugs used in treating cancer that affect normal as well as cancer cells,resveratrol does not damage healthy cells and it also protect them.Resveratrol has sophisticated antioxidant properties,it does not just scavenge free radicals,it also activates and deactivates critical enzyme and genes,hormones and chemicals related with the extraditing free radicals.So,where can we find this super-phytochemical?Resveratrol is naturally created by certain vines,pine tress,peanuts,grapes, and in an Asian medical plant,Polygonum cuspidatum or giant knotweed.

Life enhacing beverages-the green tea

When Mother Nature takes a shine to something,she can be most kind and generous.How else can one explain the marvelous properties of the green tea?Since time immemorial,imbibing the humble but delightful beverage called tea has given people pleasure and comfort-and nourishment as well (although that is not usually a major consideration).Next to water,tea is the most popular beverages on earth.Studies conducted by the University of Murcia in Spain and the John Innes Center in Norwich,England have discovered that green tea can prevent cancer cells from growing.Green tea contains chemicals compounds called catechins,which have remarkable powers to not only inhibit the growth of cancer cells but also help stave off diabetes.One catechin in particular,called EGCG(epigallocatechingallate),is considered by some scientists to be among the most promising natural anticancer compounds ever discovered.The EGCG stops cancer cells from growing by binding with an enzyme,called dihydrofolate reductase,in the body.Scientist have also found that the structure and the mode of action of EGCG is very similiar to a cancer drug called methotrexate.These findings have promoted studies about EGCG based cancer treatment.This would mean less side effects,as EGCG does not aggresively attack healthy cells.

Onions and garlic -the popular cousins in fighting stomatch and prostate cancer

What would like be like without onions and organic?The onion and its botonical cousins,garlic has been used as an ingredient in various dishes for thousands of years by many cultures around around the world.They show up in probably more recipes than any other vegetables.They both have a long history of use as medicine,and their benefits are now verified by modern science.Garlic and Onions,as well as shallots,leeks,scallions,and chives,contain natural cancer fighting substances and one of them has been identified as allicin.Some of this compounds were found to inhibit the growth of tumors in rates and mices.Although research is still in its early stages,a few studies have also shown that onion and garlic consumption is associated with a reduced risk of certain cancer in people.Studies indicate that the Chinese with the highest intake of onions,garlic,and other Allium vegetables have a risk of stomatch cancer 40 percent less than those with the lowest intake.Elderly Dutch men and women with the highest onion consumption(at least one-half onion/day) had one-half the level of stomatch cancer compared with those not consuming onions at all.Astounding results were recently obtained by a group of researches at the National Cancer Institute,in Shanghai,China.Individuals who reported eating the most Allium vegetables(garlic,scallions,onions,chives and leeks)were found to have nearly 50 percent lower prostate cancer risk than those who ate very little or none.

Cruciferous vegetables-excellent cancer fighter

Over the past 20 years,scientists all over the world have consistently found that people who eat greater amounts of vegetables and fruits have lower rates of cancer.For example,researchers have discovered that cruciferous vegetables -such as broccoli,cauliflower,brussels sprouts,kale and turnips-are brimming with a natural chemical that can significant lower your risk of cancer.The name of this extraordinary chemicals is indole-3-carbinol.Supplementing food that contains indole-3-carbinol has been found to reduce 'estradiol' levels,thereby significantly decreasing the threat of breast or prostate cancer.Indole-3-carbinol also encourage a process called apoptosis,which involves the elimination of cancerous cells from your body.Not only that,researches have also found that this pythochemical can help prevent cancer cells from growing-that is it inhibits cancer cells by an extraordinary 90 percent in some cases.In addition to indole-3-carbinol,cruciferous vegetables also contain another important cancer fighter,the isothiocyanates.Researchers in Finland have identified this compound in sauerkraut,a traditional German dish made from fermented cabbage,In animal studies,this compounds prevented the growth of cancer particularly in the breast,colon,lung and liver.Both these pythochemicals were found to enhance DNA repair in cells,perhaps helping to stop them becoming cancerous as reported in a recent British Journal of cancer.

Super-antioxidant for cancer prevention and cure

What are antioxidants?They are any compounds that protect the body from adverse biological reactions involving oxygen.This may sound strange,because we know that oxygen is necessary for the body to function,without oxygen,our cells die within minutes.A great irony of nature is that the body's natural metabolism involving oxygen also produces a host of toxic compounds called 'free radical'.These compounds can harm body cells by altering molecules of protein and fat,and by damaging DNA.Antioxidants counteract,or neutralize,the harmful effects of free radicals.Through enormous research over the past decade,a huge array of antioxidant phytochemicals found in the plant kingdom have been identified.The important ones that have been studied for their ability to fight cancer are lycopene,beta-carotene,curcumin,resveratrol and many different kinds of polyphenols,including the class flavonoid.Because these phytochemicals are in the fruits,vegetables,beans,and grains you eat,it is fairly easy to include them in your diet.

Natural enzyme from wood

Microbial enzymes for the treatment of textile industrial effluent are more economical and environmental friendly than chemicals.Malaysia exported textiles valued at RM8.48 billion to markets of the USA,singapore,UK,Hong Kong,Combodia,Indonesia,India and Vietnam.Synthetic dyes extensively used in textiles industries are very recalcitrant against biodegradative processes.The effluents generated from these industries create major environmental pollution problems.Fungus identified as Pycnoporus cinnabarinus was isolated from local hard wood.This fungus was able to completly decolorized azo dyes namely congo red,orange11,orange G and ponceau 2R.Under low nitrogen medium,this fungus produces laccases and lignin peroxidase that decolorized azo dyes forming phenolic compounds,thereby avoiding the formation of toxic aromatic amines.High yields of lacasses ang lignin peroxidase were obtained in liquid and solid fermentation using agro-waste particularly wood dust or rice straw as carbon source at ambient temperature.

Background of Mas Cotek

Mas cotek(Ficus deltoidea) or Mistletoe figs is gaining popularity among the local herbal practitioner in Malaysia and Indonesia.It is traditionally used as the postpartum treatment and for treatment of gout,pneunomia,diabetes and hypertension.Numerous commercial products developed from mas cotek are available in the markets in a number of forms.Mas cotek is an epiphyte and found growing mainly on the branches of higher plant.Presently,the raw materials used in the manufacturing of commercial products are collected from the forests.If the collection and harvesting of this plant species from the wild are not checked,this important plant species might go to an extinct.In order to make sure that these herbal genetic resources are preserved for future generations to exploit and utilize,several pro-active conservation measures that include domestication should be adopted .These include identification of potential accessions,requirement for planting medium,water and other agronomic practises.Evaluations on the incedence of pets and disease were also conducted.The bioactive contents were also studied in the effort to develop an effective and safe standardized products based on mas cotek