Featured Papers

June Edition, 2017 (Vol. 5 No. 1)

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    Haematological responses to stress of transportation and acclimation on the African catfish, Heterobranchus bidorsalis (Geoffrey, Saint Hilare)

  • person_outlineAuthor(s): Okafor AI
  • subjectCategory: Biological Sciences
  • access_time18 December, 2017
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    Stress due to transportation and one week laboratory acclimation on the African catfish, Heterobranchus bidorsalis procured from New Calabar River, Aluu in Rivers State  of  Nigeria caused significant reduction of Red Blood Cell (RBC), Blood Platelet (BP) counts, Packed Cell Volume (PCV) as well as haemoglobin contents (HC ) p<0.05. Conversely, stress of transportation and acclimation led to significant elevation of total leucocyte (TL) counts, mean corpuscular volume (MCV) indices, blood osmolality and glucose levels (p<0.05).The reduction in erythrocyte and thrombocyte counts is as a result of reduced activity of haematopoietic organs due to stress of transportation and acclimation. The elevated glucose and white cell counts is attributed to alarm reaction, preparing the fish to defend itself against invading pathogens. Consequently, the body builds up a reserve of energy which ought to be expended. The stress of transportation and acclimation (handling, sorting, injury, overcrowding,) and poor water quality normally damage the mucous or slime layer that surrounds the fish. Under such a circumstance, H. bidorsalis, being a freshwater species, absorbs much of the acclimation water and this contributes substantially to the reduced haematocrit and elevated osmolality observed.

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    Review of Palm Kernel Oil Processing And Storage Techniques In South East Nigeria

  • person_outlineAuthor(s): Okeke CG, Oluka SI
  • subjectCategory: Engineering
  • access_time19 June, 2017
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    An assessment of palm kernel processing and storage in South-Eastern Nigeria was carried out by investigative survey approach. The survey basically ascertained the extent of mechanization applicable in the area to enable the palm kernel processors and agricultural policy makers, device the modalities for improving palm kernel processing in the area. According to the results obtained from the study, in Abia state, 85% of the respondents use mechanical method while 15% use manual method in cracking their kernels. In Imo state, 83% of the processors use mechanical method while 17% use manual method. In Enugu and Ebonyi state, 70% and 50% of the processors respectively use mechanical method. It is only in Anambra state that greater number of the processors (50%) use manual method while 45% use mechanical means. It is observable from the results that palm kernel oil extraction has not received much attention in mechanization. The ANOVA of the palm kernel oil extraction technique in South- East Nigeria showed significant difference in both the study area and oil extraction techniques at 5% level of probability. Results further revealed that in Abia State, 70% of the processors use complete fractional process in refining the palm kernel oil; 25% and 5% respectively use incomplete fractional process and zero refining process. In Anambra, 60% of the processors use complete fractional process and 40% use incomplete fractional process. Zero refining method is not applicable in Anambra state.  In Enugu sate, 53% use complete fractional process while 25% and 22% respectively use zero refining and incomplete fractional process in refining the palm kernel oil. Imo state, mostly use complete fractional process (85%) in refining palm kernel oil. About 10% use zero refining method while 5% of the processors use incomplete fractional process. Plastic containers and metal drums are dominantly used in most areas in south-east Nigeria for the storage of palm kernel oil.

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    Performance Characteristics of Agricultural Field Machineries In South- East Nigeria

  • person_outlineAuthor(s): Oduma O, Oluka SI
  • subjectCategory: Engineering
  • access_time19 June, 2017
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    The field performances of agricultural field machineries in South -East agricultural zone of Nigeria were assessed, to enable farmers and agriculturists select suitable farm machines/implements based on soil conditions/characteristics for their agricultural activities. The various implements studied include; disc plough, 2-gang tandem disc harrow, ridger, rotovator and 6-row combine seed planter. Three different makes and models of tractors namely: New Holland (model-NH5610SE and capacity-55.9kw), Massey Ferguson (model-MF430E and capacity-55.2kw) and Mahindra (model-NH7570E and capacity-55.9kw) with 3- point hitch systems and average age of 1.3 years were used to study the field performances of each of the implements, in five different states that made up the study area. The field performances studied include; implement’s working speed, operation time, depth of cut, effective and theoretical field capacities, field efficiency, fuel consumption rate, implement power requirements, and wheel slippage, under different soil conditions. Results obtained revealed that the disc plough had field efficiency range of 85.74% to 88.55%, effective and theoretical field capacities range of 0.846 to 1.164ha/hr and 0.961 to 1.319ha/hr respectively; and the highest field (ploughing) efficiency was obtained in loamy-sandy soil when the plough was operated with the Massey Ferguson tractor. Harrow recorded field efficiency range of 80.17 to 91.38%, effective and theoretical field capacities range of 0.931 to 1.458ha/hr and 1.151 to 1.667 ha/hr respectively; and the highest field (harrowing) efficiency was obtained on sandy-clay soil by New Holland tractor. Ridger recorded 83.65 to 88.82% field efficiency, 0.932 to 1.322ha/hr effective capacity and 1.073 to 1.504ha/hr theoretical field capacity; and sandy-clay gave the highest field (ridging) efficiency when operated with a New Holland tractor. The rotovator had field efficiency range of 81.10 to 89.81%, effective and theoretical field capacities range of 0.759 to 0.902ha/hr and 0.758 to1.039ha/hr respectively; and the highest pulverizing efficiency was achieved on the clay-loam soil with a Massey Ferguson tractor. The planter recorded 80.63 to 89.37 field efficiency,1.012 to1.481ha/hr effective field capacity and theoretical field capacity of 1.22 to 1.716ha/hr. Ploughing gave the highest average fuel consumption rate of 22.72L/ha (8.89L/hr), followed by harrowing with average consumption of 19.57L/ha (8.04L/hr), ridging recorded 19.42L/ha (7.97L/hr), rotovator had 16.79L/ha (7.19L/hr) and least was planter with average consumption rate of 15.10L/ha (6.26L/hr). More so, all implements recorded highest tyre slippage in sandy-clay soil, followed by loamy-sandy and the least slippage was recorded in the clay-loam soil. Results finally revealed that the highest draft force (10.8kN/m) was obtained by the plough, followed by the harrow and ridger with equal draft force values of 10.5kN/m respectively and least draft was recorded by the rotovator (5.1kN/m).

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    Academic Performance of Primary School Children with Asthma

  • person_outlineAuthor(s): Nduagubam OC, Oguonu TA, Ojinnaka N, Ibekwe RC
  • subjectCategory: Clinical Sciences
  • access_time19 June, 2017
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    The academic performance of children with asthma may differ from that of their non-asthmatic colleagues. Reports on the academic performance of children with asthma are limited and the findings are inconsistent. The academic performance of children with asthma in Enugu, Nigeria is determined in this study. Children with asthma aged 5–11 years were recruited consecutively at the weekly asthma clinic of the University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital (UNTH) Enugu, Nigeria. Their age-, sex- and socio-economic- matched non- asthmatic classmates were recruited as controls. Academic performance was assessed overall using the average of the overall scores in the three term examinations of same session as well as specifically using the performance in four key subjects (English, mathematics, Social Studies and Sciences). Socio-economic status was determined using the occupational status and educational attainment of each parent. The median (range) overall academic scores for the children with asthma 79.04% (36.08% - 99.57%) was not significantly different from those of controls 80.01% (50.65% - 97.47%) (U = 6804, p = 0.461). We concluded that the academic performance of children with asthma compares favorably with that of children without asthma. 

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    POST-TRANSFUSION INFECTIONS IN SOUTH-EASTERN NIGERIA: CO-INFECTION OF HIV/HCV AMONG BLOOD DONORS IN ABAKALIKI URBAN.

  • person_outlineAuthor(s): Ogbodo SO, Chukwurah EF
  • subjectCategory: Medical Laboratory Sciences
  • access_time19 June, 2017
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    One of the major problems in transfusion medical practice in the developing countries is the incidences of transfusion transmissible infections, especially viral infections. Some of these viral infections share similar transmission pathways, making co-infections of these viruses a possibility. We investigated the possible co-infection of two viral infections-human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and hepatitis C virus (HCV) in 1,490 blood donors in a Teaching Hospital in a south-eastern state of Nigeria. This number was made up of 1384(92.9%) males and 106(7.1%) females. Antibodies to these viruses were detected using ELISA methods. Our results showed that 12(0.81%), 9(0.60%), and 2(0.13%) were positive for HIV, HCV, and both HIV and HCV respectively. Greater percentage of females than males were positive for both HIV and HCV (2.8% and 0.65% for HIV and 2.8% and 0.43% for HCV) while age group 21-30 showed highest frequency (38.5%). We advocate for wider mandatory pre-screening of blood donors, increased public health education and enlightenment on modes of transmission of these viral infections, as well as counseling of donors before screening.

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    SELECTED PHYSICAL AND AERODYNAMIC PROPERTIES OF AFRICAN BREADFRUIT (Treculia africana) SEEDS FROM SOUTH EASTERN NIGERIA.

  • person_outlineAuthor(s): Igwillo UC, Eze PC, Eze CN
  • subjectCategory: Engineering
  • access_time19 June, 2017
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    Physical and aerodynamic properties of African breadfruit (Treculia africana) seeds were studied at four moisture levels: 12.50, 15.00, 17.50 and 20.10% dry base (w.b). As moisture content increased from 10.50 to 20.10% (w.b), the average weight, major diameter, minor diameter, intermediate diameter, geometric mean diameter, arithmetic mean diameter of the seeds ranged from 0.35±0.08 to 0.60g±0.04g, 8.08±0.90 to 10.05±0.60mm, 4.04±0.53 to 5.00±0.10mm, 2.96±0.43 to 4.60±0.40mm, 4.52±0.45 to 6.03±0.20mm, 5.03±0.45 to 6.55±0.50mm respectively. Also the equivalent diameter, surface area, sphericity, projected area and aspect ratio of the seeds ranged from 4.75±0.42 to 6.03±0.41mm, 64.19±12.64 to 114.25±10.00mm2, 56±8.00 to 60±6.00%, 25.64±5.10 to 39.47 ± 3.80mm2, and 50±0.08 to 50±0.01mm respectively. The volume ranged from 0.35 ± 0.014 to 0.73 ± 0.014cm3, while the true and bulk densities ranged from 1.099 ± 0.141 to 1.110±0.424g/cm3 and 0.835±0.43 to 0.938±0.21g/cm3. Porosity decreased from 15.01±1.5 to 5.60±0.4% as moisture content increased from 10.50 to 20.10% (w.b). The angle of repose ranged from 39.80 to 60.10o with increase in moisture content. The optimum parboiling time, temperature and moisture content for hulling African breadfruit seeds were determined as 7.5minutes, 57.5oC and 20.10% (w.b) respectively. The terminal velocity of the seeds and kernels ranged from 12.5 to 17.02m/s and 11.40 to 13.36m/s. Drag coefficient and drag force of the hulls ranged from 0.1 to 0.7 and 0.518×10-4 to 0.858 ×10-4N, while the drag coefficient and drag force of the seeds and kernels ranged from 0.09 to 0.2, 4.50 ×10-4 to 6.00×10-4N; 0.2 to 0.3 and 4.0×10-4 to 5.10×10-4N respectively. This indicates that optimum separation can be achieved effectively without any loss of the seeds if the results obtained are properly applied in processing of African breadfruit.

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    Bisphenol A (BPA) Increases Blood Triglycerides and Low Density Lipoproteins in Albino Wistar Rats

  • person_outlineAuthor(s): Oguazu CE, Ezeonu FC
  • subjectCategory: Biochemistry/Molecular Biology
  • access_time19 June, 2017
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    Bisphenol A (BPA) is a component of polycarbonate and other plastics including resins that line food and beverage containers. BPA is known to leach from these products into containerized foods and drinks, and is therefore thought to be routinely ingested. In this present study the possible effect of BPA on blood lipid metabolism were investigated in rats. Female albino Wistar rats were administrated oral doses of 50, 100, 150, 200, and 250 µg BPA/kgbw/day once to determine effect of acute exposure and repeatedly for seven days in another set of test animals to determine the effects of sub-chronic exposure. Following the treatment, serum levels of lipid parameters were examined using the Chemwell Chemical Analyser. All data were expressed as means ± SD. The result of the study revealed that BPA increased blood triglycerides and LDL of exposed rats at both acute and sub-chronic phases.

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    Haematological Changes in Patients with Human Tuberculosis.

  • person_outlineAuthor(s): Okafor AI
  • subjectCategory: Clinical Sciences
  • access_time19 June, 2017
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    Some haematological alterations due to active cases of tuberculosis caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis were investigated in Enugu Urban of South East, Nigeria. The results revealed thrombocythaemia, leucocytosis and elevated Erythrocyte sedimentation rates (p<0.05). There was oligocythaemia, as well as reduced haematocrit and haemoglobin concentrations (p<0.05). The significant oligocythaemia, anaemia, reduced packed cell volume found in active TB positive persons are all attributed to invasion of haematopoietic organs by any of the Mycobacteria tuberculosis complex (MTBC) namely: M tuberculosis, M. bovis, M africanum, M. canetti, M. microti, and M. leprae, which reduced substantially the rate of erythropoiesis. The invasion of lymphoid organs such as lymph nodes, thymus and tonsils by MTBC stimulated the synthesis of leucocytes leading to leucocytosis (p<0.05). This could be an inflammatory response which prepared the victim to defend itself  against any of the MTBC that invaded the lungs and might even invade other extrapulmonary organs. Thrombocythaemia in active TB is attributed to haemoptysis, since the latter occurs whenever there is a wound or a threat to tissue injury or damage. When these changes in haematological parameters are used in combination with other tests, microscopic and clinical methods, TB diagnosis and treatment could be well improved.

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    DETERMINATION OF SOME PHYSICAL AND MECHANICAL PROPERTIES OF HORSE EYE BEAN (mucuna sloanei) FROM SOUTH EASTERN NIGERIA.

  • person_outlineAuthor(s): Eze PC, Eze CN
  • subjectCategory: Engineering
  • access_time19 June, 2017
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    Selected physical and mechanical properties of horse eye bean (mucuna sloanei) were studied at different moisture content levels of 11.5%, 13% and 17% (db). Compression strength characteristics were conducted under quasi-static compressive force at longitudinal and latitudinal (lateral) loading positions and the rupture forces, compressive strength, modulus of deformability, toughness, stiffness and force at bio-yield point determined as the mechanical properties. Results indicated that volume (20.137 - 21.856 mm3), surface area (598.362 - 720.208 mm2), geometric mean diameter (24.98 - 27.12 mm), and weight (7.625 - 9.203 g) of the velvet bean seed increased linearly with increase in moisture content. Also, the bulk density, specific gravity (0.378 - 0.421 g/mm3), sphericity (0.882 - 0.831) and aspect ratio (0.974 - 0.726) decreased linearly with increase in moisture content. These indicate that Velvet beans have wide size ranges and no single sample of the grains can effectively represent the other. In the case of the force-deformation characteristics, result indicates that the force and corresponding deformation to rupture of velvet bean seeds were found to vary from 400N - 2500N and 3mm - 10.25mm in longitudinal loading positions and 800N - 2800N, 3.5mm - 11.5mm  in lateral loading positions at the various moisture contents. The bio-yield force, compressive strength, stiffness and toughness of the velvet bean seeds varied from 400N - 1000N, 1.30N/mm2 - 8.03 N/mm2, 120N/mm - 833N/mm and 142.072 J/mm3 - 656.570 J/mm3 respectively in longitudinal loading positions to 600N - 2100N, 2.221 N/mm2 - 9.047 N/mm2, 57.14N/mm2 - 800 N/mm2 and 486.666 N/mm2 - 857.046 N/mm2 respectively in lateral loading position at the various moisture contents. Generally, the compressive strength of the horse eye bean seeds is higher at lateral loading position than at the longitudinal loading position.

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    Determinants of Survival in Low Birth Weight Infants at a Tertiary Healthcare Facility in the South Eastern Nigeria

  • person_outlineAuthor(s): Ekwochi U, Ifediora C, Osuorah CDI, Ndu IK, Asinobi IN, Amadi OF, Agwu S, Okeke IB
  • subjectCategory: Clinical Sciences
  • access_time19 June, 2017
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    Low birth weight (LBW) babies account for a large number of neonatal deaths globally, with over 90% of these occurring in developing countries with low resources. Identifying factors that determine survival in these sub-groups of babies in such a low-resource setting will help clinicians prioritize care and improve outcomes. This study aims to bridge some knowledge gaps in this regard. This was a 45-month prospective study carried out at the Enugu State University Teaching Hospital (ESUTH), Enugu, Nigeria. All eligible newborns weighing between 500g and <2500g that were seen in this period were enrolled and monitored. Data collected were analysed with SPSS Version 24, and significant associations identified using logistic regression models. A total of 166 LBW neonates were enrolled, and 68.2% of them survived. Asphyxia and episodes recurrent apnoea were recorded at least once in 78.8% and 68.4% of the babies respectively, with about two-thirds requiring respiratory support at one time or the other. Survival in these LBW newborns was negatively associated with gestational age at birth of less than 32 weeks (OR 0.17; CI 0.03-0.50; P<0.01) as well as with episodes of recurrent apnoea (OR 0.07; CI 0.02-0.34; P<0.01). However, intra-uterine exposure to malaria was associated with a 15 times higher likelihood of survival (OR 15.41; CI 2.22-106.91; P=0.01). No significant associations was found between survival and attendances to antenatal care, mode of delivery, birth weight and a number of neonatal morbidities like necrotizing enterocolitis, hypothermia, hypoglycaemia, septicaemia, anaemia and neonatal jaundice. Survival rate among low birth weight neonates in a low resource setting is decreased with delivery at less than 32 weeks completed gestation as well as recurrent episodes of apnoea, but is increased with in-utero exposure to malaria. 

December Edition, 2017 (Vol. 5 No. 2)

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    PROTECTIVE EFFECT OF CURCUMIN ON LINDANE-INDUCED HEPATOTOXICITY IN MALE WISTAR RATS

  • subjectCategory: Biochemistry/Molecular Biology
  • access_time8 January, 2018
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    Lindane (C6H6Cl6) an organochlorine pesticide has been used in agriculture and domestic purposes for several years. The aim of present study was to analyze the oxidative effect of lindane which caused biochemical and ultrastructural changes in adult male wistar rats and to evaluate the possible protective effect of Curcumin (C21H20O6). Tissues damage was assessed by histopathological observation. Curcumin plays an important role as an antioxidant and consequently expected to protect tissues from damage caused by reactive oxygen metabolites. Rats were divided into seven groups. Group-A, was given normal diet and water ad libitum.  Lindane (30 mg/kg body weight) was administered orally for 14 and 28 days in group- B and group-C respectively. Curcumin (100 mg/kg body weight) was given to Group-D and Group-E.  Lindane (30 mg/kg body weight) along with Curcumin (100 mg/kg body weight) was administered orally for 28 days in group-F. Group-G, was allowed to metabolize after 14 days of exposure to lindane. Lindane administration lead to a significantly (P<0.001) increase in hepatic lipid peroxidation (LPO) associated with reduction in levels of GSH (Glutathione), activity of SOD (Super Oxide Dismutase), CAT (Catalase) and GST (Glutahione-S-transferase). Pre-feeding and post-feeding of Curcumin resulted in decreased hepatic levels of lipid peroxides (LPO) and increased GSH (C10H17N3O6S), SOD, CAT (Catalase) and GST (Glutahione-S-transferase) activities. Results revealed that Curcumin in combination with lindane partially or totally alleviated its toxic effects on the studied parameters. In conclusion, Curcumin have beneficial effects and could be able to antagonize lindane toxicity.

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    DETECTION OF VAN C IN SOME ENTEROCOCCUS SPP. ISOLATED FROM A TERTIARY HOSPITAL IN ABUJA, NIGERIA.

  • subjectCategory: Biological Sciences
  • access_time20 December, 2017
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    This study investigated the presence of van C, a vancomycin resistant gene in some Enterococcus spp. isolated from clinical samples from National Hospital, Abuja (NHA), a tertiary hospital in Abuja, Nigeria. The samples collected for the research included stool, urine, wound and environmental swabs which were cultured on bile esculin azide agar and the isolates were identified with microgen test kit. The susceptibility testing was done with vancomycin disks. Isolates that were resistant to vancomycin by Kirby-Bauer disk diffusion method were selected for minimum inhibition concentration using E-test strips. Their DNA was extracted to determine the presence of van C genes in 17 of the isolates having MIC of ≥ 4µg/ml and ≤ 8µg/ml. The van genes present were amplified by polymerase chain reaction.

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    IMPACT OF SCHOOL ABSENCE ON ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE OF SCHOOL CHILDREN WITH ASTHMA IN ENUGU, NIGERIA

  • subjectCategory: Clinical Sciences
  • access_time20 December, 2017
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    A number of factors are thought to influence the academic performance of children with asthma and absence from school is one. Reports on the impact of school absences on the academic performance of children with asthma are limited and the findings are inconsistent. The impact of school absences on the academic performance of children with asthma in Enugu, Nigeria is determined in this study. Children with Asthma (Subjects) aged 5–11 years were recruited consecutively at the weekly asthma clinic of the University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital (UNTH) Enugu, Nigeria. Their age- , sex- and socio-economic class - matched non- asthmatic classmates (Controls) were recruited from the school. The total number of days of school absence for 2012/2013 academic session was obtained for each pair of pupils from the class attendance register. Academic performance was assessed using the average of the overall scores in the three term examinations of same session. The median number (range) of days of absence from school for the entire study population was 6 (1 - 41) days. The median number (range) of days absent from school was 9 (1 - 29) days for the subjects and 3 (1 - 41) days for the controls. The difference was highly statistically significant (U= 5103, p < 0.001). The number of controls who had average and good academic performance was higher than that of subjects. However there was no significant association between academic performance and school absence in both subjects (2   = 3.92, d.f = 2, p = 0.141) and controls (2 = 0.59, d.f = 1, p = 0.444). We concluded that although children with asthma miss more school days than their non –asthmatic classmates, this does not significantly affect their academic performance.

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    CHARACTERISTICS OF SLUDGE FROM DIFFERENT WATER TREATMENT PLANTS

  • subjectCategory: Engineering
  • access_time20 December, 2017
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    Sludge is water that contains suspended solids from the source water and the reaction products of chemicals added in the treatment process. And in order to treat and dispose of the solids produced from treatment plants in the most effective manner, it is important to know the characteristics of the solids that will be processed. This study is an investigation into the engineering and chemical properties of sludge collected from different water treatment plants in South-Western Nigeria. After determining the engineering and physical properties of the sludge samples, the sludge samples were also subjected to XRF analysis. It was found out that the sludge which was an alkaline silty-sandy material possessed four major oxides present in a Portland cement which include those of Lime (CaO), Silica (SiO2), Alumina (Al2O3) and Iron (Fe2O3) were also present at an appreciable quantity in the sludge ashes and this feature suggests a possible application of the sludge ash in place of cement only that the sludge remained a non-plastic material.

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    UTILIZATION OF RECYCLED PLASTICS (HIGH DENSITY POLYETHYLENE) AS FINE AGGREGATES IN CONSTRUCTION

  • subjectCategory: Engineering
  • access_time20 December, 2017
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    The quest for valorization of wastes in civil engineering has become prevalent in recent times. This study is an investigation into the potential use of recycled plastics (high density polyethylene) in the production of interlocking paving stones. After batching, 1:3:6 mix of concrete interlocking paving stones was produced in varying recycled plastics proportions of 5%, 10% and 20% as partial replacement for fine aggregates. The stones were moulded in plastic molds of size 220mm X 140mm X 60mm.  It was seen that the compressive strength of the RHDPE-concrete interlocking stones at 28days of curing decreases linearly from 20.31MPa (for conventional concrete interlocking stones) to 11.37MPa (for 20% recycled plastics content) and statistically there are significant differences between the compressive strength values obtained for the interlocking stones. Concrete of 5% RHDPE content can be used in lightweight concrete and as interlocking paving stones in walkways only as it is not advisably recommended for car parks and other structural purposes as it tends to fail under heavy load.

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    DETERMINATION OF NUTRIENTS, ANTINUTRIENTS, MACRO ELEMENTS, AND HEAVY METALS IN WINGED TERMITE (Macrotermes bellicosus) FROM EKE VILLAGE.

  • subjectCategory: Physical Sciences
  • access_time20 December, 2017
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    Winged reproductive termite (Macrotermes bellicosus) was collected from Eke village in Udi local government area during their nuptial flight on March 15, 2013. Nutritional, antinutritional, and heavy metal analysis was carried out using conventional analytical methods. Comparing the results obtained from the chemical analysis of the samples with the Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) for each of them showed that the moisture content (53.9%), crude protein (42%), and lipid content (52.3%) were relatively high when compared with other edible insects. The ash content (4.1%), crude fiber content (0.28%), and carbohydrate content (1.32%) were low. Result of the antinutrient revealed that oxalate (79.2mg/100g) was the most abundant while phytate (0.33mg/100g) was the least abundant. Elemental analysis showed that iron (Fe) content of the sample was relatively high while calcium (Ca), potassium (K), and phosphorous (P) content were low. Heavy metals like lead (Pb) and cadmium (Cd) analyzed for were very low in the sample. The result shows that the winged termite may be used as an alternative source of food supplement.

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    DETERMINATION OF MONTMORILLONITE CONTENT IN NIGERIAN BENTONITIC CLAYS USING FOURIER TRANSFORM INFRARED (FTIR) SPECTROSCOPY

  • subjectCategory: Engineering
  • access_time20 December, 2017
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    This research focused on characterizing the raw, beneficiated and treated Nigerian bentonitic clays using Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR) with the aim of determining their mineralogical compositions for application in oil and gas drilling fluid formulation. The frequencies of absorption for all the samples in which the AIAIOH stretching band typically occurs at approximately between 3620-3630 cm-1 and for bending band is situated at approximate values of 920-930 cm-1 which indicates that all the studied bentonite samples are Al-rich montmorillonite of smectite group. The samples also showed small CO3- stretching band at approximately 1430 cm-1 indicating the presence of carbonate impurities.

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    CHILDHOOD DREADLOCKS (DADA HAIR): PERCEPTION AND HEALTHCARE SEEKING BEHAVIOR OF CARE-GIVERS IN A DEVELOPING COUNTRY.

  • subjectCategory: Clinical Sciences
  • access_time20 December, 2017
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    The word "dada" is used to describe dreadlocks. Several cultural beliefs and practices are associated with concept of the “dada” child and this influence the health care seeking behaviour of caregivers. To determine the perception of caregivers about childhood dreadlocks (Dada hair) and its effect on the health care seeking behavior of care givers in Enugu South-East Nigeria. A cross sectional study involving care-givers seen at the two tertiary health institutions in Enugu State, South Eastern Nigeria.  Interviewer administered questionnaires were used to obtain data from the study participants. There were 273 respondents, 90.1% of whom were females and 40% were of low socioeconomic status (SES). One hundred and twenty three (45%) participants believed in the concept of childhood dreadlock but only 27 (9.9%) reported previously or currently having a child with dreadlocks. Thirteen percent were of the view that under no circumstances should dreadlocked hair be washed or combed while 20% opined that a special ritual should be performed by a religious representative before cutting or shaving the dreadlocked hair. Fourteen percent of the caregivers believed that illness in a child with dreadlocks was of supernatural origin and would not respond to treatment with conventional medicine. For respondents that accept the use of conventional healthcare medicine during ill health of a dada child, twenty nine (11%) would refuse any medical interventions that would involve shaving the hair for venous access or neurosurgical procedures until the necessary ceremony had been performed. Only mother’s level of education was significantly associated with belief in the concept of the “dada” child. There is need for appropriate enlightenment of parents and care givers especially in the lower educational group about the importance of seeking healthcare and other necessary preventive strategies for the dada child while still respecting their cultural belief in the concept of childhood dreadlocks.

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    FH-326: A DROUGHT TOLERANT, HIGH YIELDING VARIETY FOR WATER SCARCE AREAS OF PUNJAB, PAKISTAN

  • subjectCategory: Agricultural Sciences
  • access_time20 December, 2017
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    ‘FH-326’ cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.) was developed by the Cotton Research Station (CRS), Faisalabad, Pakistan, and approved by Punjab Seed Council in 48th meeting on 06-03-2017. This variety developed as a part of investigations oriented towards evolving high-yielding cotton cultivars that can tolerate drought stress.FH-326 was developed through making the cross between FH-942 (Non-Bt.) and FH-114 (Bt.). FH-326 was tested in multiple trials conducted by various public agencies. In Provincial Coordinated Cotton Trial (PCCT) FH-326 out yielded (more than 35%) significantly to both standards FH-142 and MNH-886. In the National Coordinated Varietal Trial (NCVT), FH-326 produced more Seed Cotton Yield than the standards for two consecutive years (2016 and 2017). FH-326 is highly drought tolerant variety (Required 4 irrigation instead of 8 after germination) and also possesses high fiber quality (staple length 29.2 mm and fiber fineness 4.2 µg/inch). The commercial cultivation of this variety will contribute sustainability of cotton production in Pakistan and can also be used as valuable genetic resource in future cotton breeding programs.

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    EXTRACTION OF AN ESSENTIAL OIL FROM CLOVE’S BUDS USING AN ULTRASONIC-ASSISTED METHOD

  • subjectCategory: Physical Sciences
  • access_time20 December, 2017
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    Cloves (Syzygium aromaticum L.) are the aromatic dried flower buds of a tree in the family Myrtacae. Clove’s essential oil is widely used as aromatherapy and for toothache treatment. Development of extraction technology that could increase oil yield from clove would thus significantly enhance the profitability of the clove’s oil and reduce processing costs significantly. It has been shown that ultrasound-assisted extraction method which uses vibrations to extract samples with polar solvents in an ultrasonic bath can enhance extraction of phytochemicals from plant sources while reducing processing time and solvent consumption. In this this research work an essential oils was obtained from clove’s buds using an ultrasonic-assisted method with n-hexane as extraction solvent at different ultrasonic machine power rate of 100, 200, 300, 400 and 500 W at constant time of 20 minutes at room temperature, the chemical compounds present in the different essential oil were analyzed using Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometer (GC-MS). The GC-MS results show that the maximum content of eugenyl acetate in extracts was 9.24%, and were extracted from clove buds at ultrasonic powers of 300 W.

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    AWARENESS OF HIV PREVENTION METHODS AMONG INHABITANTS OF A RURAL COMMUNITY IN ENUGU STATE, NIGERIA

  • subjectCategory: Clinical Sciences
  • access_time20 December, 2017
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    Human Immunodeficiency Virus is an infective organism that attacks the immune system of victims, frequently leading to disease known as Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome.  This virus is present in some body fluids of infected persons. Prevention can be done through; correct and consistent use of male and female condom, safe blood transfusion practices, elimination of mother-to-child-transmission, not using already used injection needles and sharps, testing and counseling for HIV and sexually transmitted infections, voluntary medical male circumcision, and antiretroviral drug use for prevention. This research was conducted in Egede, Udi Local Government Area, Enugu state, Nigeria. Interviewer administered questionnaire was used to collect information from respondents who presented for a medical outreach activity in January 2015. Socio-demographic data revealed that 76.9% were over fifty years, 69.9% females, 82.8% married, 52.7% had no formal education, and 69.9% farmers. On awareness of HIV prevention methods; abstinence from sexual intercourse scored 36.1%, being faithful to one uninfected partner 30.1%, correct and consistent use of condom 28.4%, organizing HIV/AIDS awareness campaign 26.4%, transfusing only screened blood 26.7%, preventing infection from mother to child 26.4%, HIV counseling and testing (HCT) 27.4%, male circumcision 16.9%, treatment of sexually transmitted infections 23.6%, giving antiretroviral drug to an exposed person 24.0%, giving antiretroviral drug to the partner of an infected person 21.3%, and by avoiding skin scarification and tattooing 18.9%. Total awareness on HIV prevention methods was 25.5%. It is important that HIV/AIDS awareness activities be stepped up in rural areas of Enugu state and Nigeria generally.

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