Research Papers/Topics in Biochemistry

Physiological, Biochemical And Molecular Responses Of Tea (Camellia Sinensis L. O. Kuntze) Cultivars Grown In Kenya To Water Deficit

ABSTRACT Tea is one of the most popular non-alcoholic beverages worlwide, and a leading foreign exchange earner and source of livelihood to over three million people in Kenya. Tea growing areas in Kenya often experience drought periods which cause accumulated soil water deficits. Tea plants respond to water deficit through poorly understood physiological, cellular/biochemical and molecular processes. Development of tea cultivars adapted to waterdeficit stress greatly relies on an underst...

Protective Role Of Antioxidant In Ameliorating African Trypanosomiasis - Induced Brain Degeneration In A Mouse Model

ABSTRACT Late stage Human African Trypanosomiasis (HAT) is manifested by brain degeneration following infection by Trypanasoma brucei rhodensiense and Trypanasoma brucei gambiense parasites. This stage can only be treated with melarsoprol (Mel B) which inadvertently induces Post Treatment Reactive Encephalopathy (PTRE) and a mortality of 5% among HAT infected patients. This is an unacceptable mortality for a modern human drug. Investigations were conducted to establish the protective ro...

Morphological And Molecular Characterization Of Ascobolus And Pilobolus Fungi In Wild Herbivore Dung In Nairobi National Park

ABSTRACT Coprophilous fungi are abundant species found in dung of most wild animals, and an easily available and abundant tool for studying and monitoring ecosystem changes. The focus of this study was to characterize two genera of coprophilous fungi, Pilobolus and Ascobolus. These fungi are important in decomposing and recycling of nutrients from animal waste. Ascobolus fungi are important in genetic studies and have been identified as a source of enzymes and antibiotics. Pilobolus fun...

Assessment And Molecular Characterization Of Bacterial Degraders Of Hexazinone And 2,4-D Herbicides From Sugarcane Cultivated Soils In Nzoia Company Nucleus Estates, Kenya

ABSTRACT Agrochemicals have been used extensively all over the world for improved food security, industrial development, and poverty reduction. In Western Kenya, herbicides are used to clear weeds in sugarcane growing plantations. Uncontrolled and unregulated use of these herbicides results in contamination of both soils and the associated drainage systems. Their use may have adverse effects such as disruption of microbial, animal and plant diversity in addition to serious effects to hu...

Tea Flavonoids And Their Effect On Chronic Inflammation Induced In Trypanosoma Brucei Brucei Infected Mice

ABSTRACT Emerging scientific data from pharmacological and physiological studies continue to show that tea has beneficial effects on human health by boosting immunity. In vitro studies have shown that flavonoids help immune response by acting as anti-cancer, anti-viral and antibacterial agents. In this study, different types of commercial tea samples were assayed for their phenolic composition, antioxidant activity and their effect on chronic inflammation induced by Trypanosoma brucei br...

Quality Analysis And Molecular Diversity Of Cassava (Manihot Esculenta Crantz) Germplasm In Kenya

ABSTRACT Cassava (Manihot esculenta Cranzt) is an important food security crop for resource poor rural communities particularly in Africa. Little is however known about variability of critical root nutritional, biochemical quality traits and molecular diversity of Kenyan cassava germplasm. This led to a study whose objective was to determine the nutritional quality traits of different genotypes of cassava cultivated in the central Rift Valley region of Kenya and to identify genetic cons...

Characterization Of Aflatoxins And Toxigenic Aspergillus In Maize And Soil From The Eastern Region Of Kenya

ABSTRACT Aflatoxin contamination is a major problem affecting cereal producers worldwide. Aspergillus species, which are known to produce these toxins, colonize cereals in the field, during post-harvest period through to storage. This study sought to establish variation in: (i) fungal species in maize and soil, (ii) their morphological diversity, (iii) the distribution of toxigenic Aspergillus species as well as, (iv) the seasonal variations of aflatoxins and (v) the predominant toxin t...

The Role Of Antioxidants In Improving Treatment Outcome And Reducing Disease Severity In Late Stage Human African Trypanosomiasis

ABSTRACT Human African trypanosomiasis (HAT) is a tropical disease caused by two subspecies of Trypanosoma brucei: T. b. rhodesiense and T. b. gambiense. Melarsoprol, an organic arsenical is the only drug used to treat late stage T. b. rhodesiense infection in spite of its toxic side effects. A mouse model was adapted to study the effects of melarsoprol which was apparently toxic at normal intravenous doses of 3.6mg/kg body weight. Results from this study show that melarsoprol markedly ...

Analysis Of Tsetse Fly (Diptera: Glossinidae) Blood Meals Using Mitochondrial Cytochrome Genes For Vertebrate Host Identification

ABSTRACT Information on the vertebrate hosts of blood feeding vectors forms a useful decision-making tool in the planning of tsetse fly control and eradication operations. The objective of this study was to investigate the utility of mitochondrial Cytochrome c oxidase I and Cytochrome b gene sequences in the identification of tsetse fly blood meals in order to provide a basis for more rational control of trypanosomosis in East Africa. Blood fed Glossina swynnertoni were sampled from the...

Screening Mosquitoes For Rift Valley Fever Virus And Blood Meal Sources During The 2006/2007 Outbreak In Kenya

ABSTRACT Rift Valley Fever (RVF) is a mosquito borne viral infection, first reported in the Rift Valley province of Kenya in 1912 and identified in 1931. Major outbreaks have been reported in Kenya in 1997/1998 and 2006/2007. Baringo, Garissa and Kilifi district of Kenya were hot spots in the last major RVF outbreak that occurred in the country in 2006/2007. Investigations were conducted during the outbreak to establish putative mosquito vectors and vertebrate host of RVF virus. Engorge...

Blood-Feeding Pattern Of Malaria Vector Reveals Malaria Transmission Dynamics In Three Islands Of Lake Victoria In Kenya

ABSTRACT The Lake Victoria region of western Kenya is malaria endemic with a suitable environment throughout the year for the transmission of Plasmodium parasites by its primary mosquito vector, Anopheles gambiae sensu lato (s.l.), as well as other secondary vectors. Malaria control largely depends on vector control using long-lasting insecticidal nets (LLINs) that protect humans from infectious bites while sleeping. However, the success of this strategy is greatly threatened by resista...

Molecular Characterization Of Trypanosoma Brucei Brucei And Trypanosoma Brucei Rhodesiense Isolates And Responses Of Glossina Pallidipes To Trypanosoma Brucei Brucei Challenge

ABSTRACT African trypanosomiases are a group of related diseases that affect humans (Human African Trypanosomiasis - HAT) and their livestock (Animal African Trypanosomiasis), with devastating medical and economic consequences for Africa. The diseases are caused by trypanosome parasites cyclically transmitted by tsetse flies. Recent reports indicate that HAT is on the decline in sub Sahara Africa. However, the disease still remains a major health problem in some parts of Africa such as ...

Characterization And Antimicrobial Activity Of Fungal Endophytes From Selected Kenyan Medicinal Plants

ABSTRACT Infectious diseases remain to be a global health burden due to the development of antibiotic resistance by pathogenic microorganisms. Antibiotic resistance has led to increased number of deaths among children and adults. This study sought to screen for antimicrobial activity of extracts from fungal endophytes against selected human pathogens, identify, and characterize the fungal endophytes and screen for phytochemicals present in selected medicinal plants‟ extracts. Sixty-fi...

Determination Of Zinc, Iron, Resistant Starch, Phytic Acid And Their Effect On Rheological And Organoleptic Properties For Selected Kenyan Wheat Varieties

ABSTRACT Micronutrient deficiency of zinc and iron is a major problem worldwide, especially in the developing countries that heavily rely on cereal rich diets for sustenance. Wheat is a popular staple cereal crop containing substantial levels of micronutrients and could be used as a tool for alleviating their deficiencies. The study reported herein focused on determining the concentration of zinc, iron, resistant starch (RS) and phytic acid in 9 newly released wheat varieties and their ...

Combined Antibacterial And Antifungal Activities Of Eucalyptus Citriodora And Syzygium Aromaticum Essential Oils

ABSTRACT The emergence of multi-drug resistant strains is a formidable threat to the fight against skin diseases and hence effective alternative regimes must be sought. Although many studies have been done on antimicrobial activities of Syzygium aromaticum and Eucalyptus citriodora oils, no information is available on their antimicrobial interaction and hence the purpose of this study. Bioactivity testing of Syzygium aromaticum and Eucalyptus citriodora oils was done using disc diffusio...


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