Publications by authors named "Ahmad Azfaralariff"

6 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Sago starch nanocrystal-stabilized Pickering emulsions: Stability and rheological behavior.

Int J Biol Macromol 2021 Mar 24. Epub 2021 Mar 24.

Faculty of Science and Technology, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, 43600 Bangi, Selangor Darul Ehsan, Malaysia. Electronic address:

This study presents the isolation of SNC from sago starch and its performance as proficient particle emulsifier. It highlights the impact of SNC on the stability and rheological properties of oil-in-water (o/w) emulsions. The percentage yield of the SNC obtained was equivalent to 25 ± 0.1% (w/w) with particle diameters ranging from 25 to 100 nm. A series of Pickering emulsion at different ratios of oil (5%-35% v/v) and SNC (1%-4% w/v) was prepared for further investigations. The mean droplet diameter of emulsions obtained was ranged from 19.12 to 35.96 μm, confirming the effects of both SNC and oil content on the droplet's diameter distribution. Formulations with 4.0 wt% of SNC exhibited the maximum stability against coalescence. Results obtained have justified that the SNC can be used as an alternative solid emulsifier in producing stable emulsion with desired properties for various applications.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ijbiomac.2021.03.132DOI Listing
March 2021

Mutated Shiitake extracts inhibit melanin-producing neural crest-derived cells in zebrafish embryo.

Comp Biochem Physiol C Toxicol Pharmacol 2021 Mar 15;245:109033. Epub 2021 Mar 15.

Department of Food Sciences, Faculty of Science and Technology, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, 43600 Bangi, Selangor, Malaysia; Tasik Chini Research Centre, Faculty of Science and Technology, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, 43600 Bangi, Selangor, Malaysia; Innovative Centre for Confectionery Technology (MANIS), Faculty of Science and Technology, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, 43600 Bangi, Selangor, Malaysia. Electronic address:

The ability of natural extracts to inhibit melanocyte activity is of great interest to researchers. This study evaluates and explores the ability of mutated Shiitake (A37) and wildtype Shiitake (WE) extract to inhibit this activity. Several properties such as total phenolic (TPC) and total flavonoid content (TFC), antioxidant activity, effect on cell and component profiling were conducted. While having no significant differences in total phenolic content, mutation resulted in A37 having a TFC content (1.04 ± 0.7 mg/100 ml) compared to WE (0.86 ± 0.9 mg/100 ml). Despite that, A37 extract has lower antioxidant activity (EC50, A37 = 549.6 ± 2.70 μg/ml) than WE (EC50 = 52.8 ± 1.19 μg/ml). Toxicity tests on zebrafish embryos show that both extracts, stop the embryogenesis process when the concentration used exceeds 900 μg/ml. Although both extracts showed pigmentation reduction in zebrafish embryos, A37 extract showed no effect on embryo heartbeat. Cell cycle studies revealed that WE significantly affect the cell cycle while A37 not. Further tests found that these extracts inhibit the phosphorylation of Glycogen synthase kinase 3 β (pGSK3β) in HS27 cell line, which may explain the activation of apoptosis in melanin-producing cells. It was found that from 19 known compounds, 14 compounds were present in both WE and A37 extracts. Interestingly, the presence of decitabine in A37 extract makes it very potential for use in the medical application such as treatment of melanoma, skin therapy and even cancer.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cbpc.2021.109033DOI Listing
March 2021

Comprehensive computational target fishing approach to identify Xanthorrhizol putative targets.

Sci Rep 2021 Jan 15;11(1):1594. Epub 2021 Jan 15.

Department of Food Sciences, Faculty of Science and Technology, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, 43600, Bangi, Selangor, Malaysia.

Xanthorrhizol (XNT), is a bioactive compound found in Curcuma xanthorrhiza Roxb. This study aimed to determine the potential targets of the XNT via computational target fishing method. This compound obeyed Lipinski's and Veber's rules where it has a molecular weight (MW) of 218.37 gmol, TPSA of 20.23, rotatable bonds (RBN) of 4, hydrogen acceptor and donor ability is 1 respectively. Besides, it also has half-life (HL) values 3.5 h, drug-likeness (DL) value of 0.07, oral bioavailability (OB) of 32.10, and blood-brain barrier permeability (BBB) value of 1.64 indicating its potential as therapeutic drug. Further, 20 potential targets were screened out through PharmMapper and DRAR-CPI servers. Co-expression results derived from GeneMANIA revealed that these targets made connection with a total of 40 genes and have 744 different links. Four genes which were RXRA, RBP4, HSD11B1 and AKR1C1 showed remarkable co-expression and predominantly involved in steroid metabolic process. Furthermore, among these 20 genes, 13 highly expressed genes associated with xenobiotics by cytochrome P450, chemical carcinogenesis and steroid metabolic pathways were identified through gene ontology (GO) and KEGG pathway analysis. In conclusion, XNT is targeting multiple proteins and pathways which may be exploited to shape a network that exerts systematic pharmacological effects.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-021-81026-9DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7810825PMC
January 2021

Improving the efficiency of post-digestion method in extracting microplastics from gastrointestinal tract and gills of fish.

Chemosphere 2020 Dec 11;260:127649. Epub 2020 Jul 11.

Department of Chemical Sciences, Faculty of Science and Technology, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, 43600, Bangi, Selangor, Malaysia. Electronic address:

Post-digestion treatment is an important step during sample preparation to facilitate the removal of undigested materials for better detection of ingested microplastics. Sieving, density separation with zinc chloride solution (ZnCl), and oil extraction protocol (OEP) have been introduced in separating microplastics from sediments. The clean-up methods are rarely highlighted in previous studies, especially in the separation of microplastics from marine biota. Thus, this study proposed and compared the suitability of three techniques, which can reduce the number of undigested particles from the digestate of GIT and gills. Our result has shown excellent removal of non-plastics materials and reduces the coloration of filter paper in all treated samples. Both sieving and density separation achieved optimum post-digestion efficiencies of >95% for both GIT and gill samples, which former showed no effect on polymer integrity. Additionally, high recovery rate was obtained for the larger size microplastics (>500 μm) with approximately 97.7% (GIT) and 95.7% (gill), respectively. Exposure to the ZnCl solution led to a significant loss of smaller size PET and changed the absorption spectrums of all tested polymers. Particle morphology determined by SEM revealed such exposure eroded the surface of PET fragments and elemental analysis has shown detectable peaks of zinc and chlorine appeared. Low microplastics recoveries were achieved through OPE and residue of oil was observed from the infrared spectrum of all tested polymer. The findings demonstrate sieving with size fractioning can provide exceptional removal of non-plastics materials from the digestate of GIT and gill samples.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.chemosphere.2020.127649DOI Listing
December 2020

Formation of Antihyperlipidemic Nano-Ezetimibe from Volatile Microemulsion Template for Enhanced Dissolution Profile.

Langmuir 2020 07 2;36(27):7908-7915. Epub 2020 Jul 2.

Faculty of Bioenginering and Technology, Universiti Malaysia Kelantan, Jeli, Kelantan 17600, Malaysia.

Nanostructures play an important role in targeting sparingly water-soluble drugs to specific sites. Because of the structural flexibility and stability, the use of template microemulsions (μEs) can produce functional nanopharmaceuticals of different sizes, shapes, and chemical properties. In this article, we report a new volatile oil-in-water (o/w) μE formulation comprising ethyl acetate/ethanol/brij-35/water to obtain the highly water-dispersible nanoparticles of an antihyperlipidemic agent, ezetimibe (EZM-NPs), to enhance its dissolution profile. A pseudoternary phase diagram was delineated in a specified brij-35/ethanol ratio (1:1) to describe the transparent, optically isotropic domain of the as-formulated μE. The water-dilutable μE formulation, comprising an optimum composition of ethyl acetate (18.0%), ethanol (25.0%), brij-35 (25.0%), and water (32.0%), showed a good dissolvability of EZM around 4.8 wt % at pH 5.2. Electron micrographs showed a fine monomodal collection of EZM-loaded μE droplets (∼45 nm) that did not coalesce even after lyophilization, forming small spherical EZM-NPs (∼60 nm). However, the maturity of nanodrug droplets observed through dynamic light scattering suggests the affinity of EZM to the nonpolar microenvironment, which was further supported through peak-to-peak correlation of infrared analysis and fluorescence measurements. Moreover, the release profile of the as-obtained EZM-nanopowder increased significantly >98% in 30 min, which indicates that a reduced drug concentration will be needed for capsules or tablets in the future and can be simply incorporated into the multidosage formulation of EZM.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.langmuir.0c01016DOI Listing
July 2020

Methylene blue removal by using pectin-based hydrogels extracted from dragon fruit peel waste using gamma and microwave radiation polymerization techniques.

J Biomater Sci Polym Ed 2018 10 25;29(14):1745-1763. Epub 2018 Sep 25.

a School of Chemical Sciences, Faculty of Science and Technology , Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia , Bangi , Malaysia.

This research aims to compare the ability of smart hydrogel in removing the methylene blue prepared by using two different radiation methods. The extracted pectin from the dragon fruit peel (Hylocereus polyrhizus) was used with acrylic acid (AA) to produce a polymerized hydrogel through gamma and microwave radiation. The optimum hydrogel swelling capacity was obtained by varying the dose of radiation, pectin to AA ratio and pH used. From the array of samples, the ideal hydrogel was obtained at pH 8 with a ratio of 2:3 (pectin: AA) using 10 kGy and 400 W radiated gamma and microwave respectively. The performance of both hydrogels namely as Pc/AA(G) (gamma) and Pc/AA(Mw) (microwave) were investigated using methylene blue (MB) adsorption studies. In this study, three variables were manipulated, pH and MB concentration and hydrogel mass in order to find the optimum condition for the adsorption. Results showed that 20 mg of Pc/AA(G) performed the highest MB removal which was about 45% of 20 mg/L MB at pH 8. While 30 mg of Pc/AA(Mw) able to remove up to 35% of 20 mg/L MB at the same pH condition. To describe the adsorption mechanism, both kinetic models pseudo-first-order, pseudo-second-order were employed. The results from kinetic data showed that it fitted the pseudo-first-order as compared to pseudo-second-order model equation. This study provides alternative of green, facile and affective biomaterial for dye absorbents that readily available.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/09205063.2018.1489023DOI Listing
October 2018