Publications by authors named "Mushtaq Ahmad"

230 Publications

Light and scanning electron microscopic study of genus Echinochloa species inhabited in Pakistan.

Microsc Res Tech 2021 Apr 20. Epub 2021 Apr 20.

Department of Botany, Lahore College for Women University, Lahore, Pakistan.

Grass taxonomy is quite problematic and insignificant taxonomic work has been done on Echinochloa with special reference to Pakistan. Therefore, the present study was carried out to provide taxonomic keys for the identification of this genus through microscopic epidermal leaf anatomical parameters. Light microscopy and scanning electron microscopy were done to delimit the different species. Special structures like hook cells, short and long cells, stomata, macro- and micro-hairs, prickles and silica bodies showed a lot of variation among each species. For instance, E. frumentacea can be distinguished from E. walteri by the presence of macro hairs between the veins. Furthermore, E. crus-galli can be distinguished from E. frumentacea in terms of macro hair size, that is, 45-60 μm and 20-60 μm, respectively. Similarly, E. colona showed marked variations in terms of prickles abundance from E. frumentacea. Overall results of this research reports valuable qualitative and quantitative diagnostic futures for the genus Echinochloa.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jemt.23782DOI Listing
April 2021

Synthesis of biodiesel from non-edible (Brachychiton populneus) oil in the presence of nickel oxide nanocatalyst: Parametric and optimisation studies.

Chemosphere 2021 Apr 2;278:130469. Epub 2021 Apr 2.

Department of Chemical and Environmental Engineering, Faculty Science and Engineering, University of Nottingham, Malaysia, 43500, Semenyih, Selangor Darul Ehsan, Malaysia. Electronic address:

The present study defines a novel green method for the synthesis of the nickel oxide nanocatalyst by using an aqueous latex extract of the Ficus elastic. The catalyst was examined for the conversion of novel Brachychiton populneus seed oil (BPSO) into biodiesel. The Brachychiton populneus seeds have a higher oil content (41 wt%) and free fatty acid value (3.8 mg KOH/g). The synthesised green nanocatalyst was examined by the Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopy, energy dispersive X-Ray (EDX) spectroscopy, X-Ray diffraction (XRD) spectroscopy and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The obtained results show that the synthesised green nanocatalyst was 22-26 nm in diameter and spherical-cubic in shape with a higher rate of catalytic efficiency. It was utilised further for the conversion of BPSO into biofuel. Due to the high free fatty acid value, the biodiesel was synthesised by the two-step process, i.e., pretreatment of the BPSO by means of acid esterification and then followed by the transesterification reaction. The acidic catalyst (HSO) was used for the pretreatment of BPSO. The optimum condition for the transesterification of the pretreated BPSO was 1:9 of oil-methanol molar ratio, 2.5 wt % of prepared nanocatalyst concentration and 85 °C of reaction temperature corresponding to the highest biodiesel yield of 97.5 wt%. The synthesised biodiesel was analysed by the FT-IR and GC-MS technique to determine the chemical composition of fatty acid methyl esters. Fuel properties of Brachychiton populneus seed oil biodiesel (BPSOB) were also examined, compared, and it falls in the prescribed range of ASTM standards.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.chemosphere.2021.130469DOI Listing
April 2021

Implication of scanning electron microscopy in the seed morphology with special reference to three subfamilies of Fabaceae.

Microsc Res Tech 2021 Apr 8. Epub 2021 Apr 8.

Department of Plant Sciences, Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad, Pakistan.

The current research work was aimed to determine the morphological variation in the seeds of subfamilies Caesalpinioideae, Mimosoideae, and Papilionoideae using scanning electron microscope to investigate the different seed features including; Seed length, width, weight, hilum shape, position, fracture line pattern, pleurogram shape, texture crudeness, ornamentation wall, and surface ornamentation. A total of 12 species were collected. The study reveals that the seed types alters from psilate to rugose, pleurogram shape from lunar to U shape, hilum shape from elliptical to depressed, hilum position from terminal to subterminal, fracture line pattern from reticulate irregular ridges to psilate with regular ridges, texture crudeness from fine to coarse, surface ornamentation from reticulate to psilate, and ornamentation wall also varies from thin to thick. In all the studied species, it was found that seed surface was brown in color except in Senna alata, in which seed surface was black. Regarding the seed size, it was found that the smallest seed was observed for Sesbania sesban, while the largest seed was observed for Pongamia pinnata. The present research article indicates the taxonomic significance of seed morphology in the subfamilies Caesalpinioideae, Mimosaceae, and Papilionoideae.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jemt.23772DOI Listing
April 2021

COVID-19: Prolonged viral shedding in an HIV patient with literature review of risk factors for prolonged viral shedding and its implications for isolation strategies.

Clin Case Rep 2021 Mar 13;9(3):1397-1401. Epub 2021 Jan 13.

Weill Cornell Medicine-Qatar Cornell University Doha Qatar.

Our work highlights patients at risk of prolonged viral shedding in COVID-19 and its implications for isolation strategies and explores possible solution by PCR-CT value testing (cycle threshold value). We also review the impact of HIV on COVID-19.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ccr3.3786DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7981612PMC
March 2021

Study of volumetric and dosimetric changes during fractionated radiotherapy in head and neck cancers: A single centre experience.

J Cancer Res Ther 2021 Jan-Mar;17(1):235-241

Department of Radiation Oncology, Cancer Research Institute, Himalayan Institute of Medical Sciences, Swami Rama Himalayan University, Dehradun, Uttarakhand, India.

Aims And Objective: The assessment of volumetric and dosimetric changes in the head-and-neck cancer during fractionated radiotherapy by intensity-modulated radiotherapy (IMRT) technique.

Materials And Methods: A single-center prospective observational hospital-based study with a sample size of 20 cases of the head-and--neck squamous cell carcinoma over 1 year treated with chemoradiotherapy 66-70 Gy/33-35#@2 Gy/fraction with weekly cisplatin 35 mg/m. After contouring of target volumes (TVs) and organs at risk (OARs) in initial computed tomography (CT) scan, all patients were planned and treated by the IMRT technique. We re-delineated the TVs and OARs in the second (CT15#) and third (CT30#) planning CT scan, and the initial plan was implemented in the re-CT scan dataset with the same optimization and doses. The volumetric and dosimetric changes during fractionated radiotherapy of TVs and OARs were evaluated and compared. Nonparametric Wilcoxon-signed-rank test was used to compare the means between each plan.

Results: For all 20 patients, plans were compared for volumetric and dosimetric parameters on repeat CT scans. The mean variation in gross tumor volume (GTV) and planning TV (PTV) was significant after 15 and 30 fractions of radiotherapy. On dosimetric evaluation, there was a significant increase in doses to GTV and OARs (parotid, spinal cord, and cochlea) with a significant P value. However, doses to the OARs were not exceeded the maximum tolerance limit.

Conclusion: This prospective single-center study concluded that two repeat imaging, along with re-planning improved TV coverage and decreased doses to the normal tissue. Larger studies with more sample sizes are required to set the criteria for replanning.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4103/jcrt.JCRT_350_20DOI Listing
March 2021

Scanning electron imaging of mellitophilous and allergenic pollen grain of arid and northern irrigated agroecological zones of Pakistan.

Microsc Res Tech 2021 Mar 11. Epub 2021 Mar 11.

Department of Plant Sciences, Quaid i Azam University, Islamabad, Pakistan.

Palynomorphic studies of 65 common mellitophilous and 16 allergenic flora of Arid and Northern irrigated agroecological zones of Pakistan are carried out in this study by using field emission scanning electron microscope (FESEM). Mellitophilous pollen were extracted from honey samples of selected sites. For collection of local allergenic pollen, previously identified allergy-causing plants were selected. Pollen morphological examination was carried out under FESEM. Diverse range of pollen shapes ranging from monad to polyad and sculpturing ranging from psilate to echinate, scabrate to reticulate, bireticulate, or echinolophate were observed. Brassicaceae, Myrtaceae, Asteraceae, Rosaceae, and Poaceae were observed to be dominant allergenic and mellitophilous families of the selected sites.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jemt.23742DOI Listing
March 2021

Application of spore morphology to solve identification problems in certain species of family Dryopteridaceae from Malakand Division, Pakistan.

Microsc Res Tech 2021 Mar 3. Epub 2021 Mar 3.

Plant Eco-Physiology and Evolution Group, State Key Laboratory of Conservation and Utilization of Subtropical Agro-bio-resources, College of Forestry, Guangxi University Daxuedonglu 100, Nanning, Guangxi, China.

Here we investigate the morphology of the spores of 12 native taxa of Dryopteridaceae that grow in Malakand division, Pakistan; most of these species not fully described before. This study intends to survey the taxonomic significance of spore morphological features and their variation useful for species identification in 7 species of Polystichum and 5 taxa of Dryopteris. The spores examinations were accomplished utilizing a light microscope (LM), and scanning electron microscope (SEM). The spores are monolete, medium-sized, with variable shapes in both equatorial and polar views. The mean estimation of equatorial diameter ranging from 28.3 to 58.3 μm and the polar diameter varied from 27.6 to 45.8 μm. The exospore thickness ranges between 1.6 to 3.8 μm, and the thickness of perispore is 0.8-6.7 μm. The perispore is perforated, ornamentation elements occur in different ways in the studied taxa of Polystichum. In investigated Dryopteris taxa, rugate perispore type is found. Results of multivariate statistical analysis (UPGMA, and PCA) established on quantitative and qualitative morphological traits of spores demonstrate that the species form distinct groups, not reflecting any phylogenetic relationships. A key to the spores types is provided for species identification, which dependent on the diagnostic characters of spores. The results of this study indicate that variation of spore morphological traits; in particular, the ornamentation and perispore characteristics, which is surface texture, have diagnostic value at the species level. Our data will help in the identification of spores of the family Dryopteridaceae in palynological and taxonomic studies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jemt.23746DOI Listing
March 2021

Chemical characteristics, oxidative potential, and sources of PM in wintertime in Lahore and Peshawar, Pakistan.

J Environ Sci (China) 2021 Apr 1;102:148-158. Epub 2020 Oct 1.

State Key Joint Laboratory of Environment Simulation and Pollution Control, School of Environment, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875, China.

The chemical characteristics, oxidative potential, and sources of PM were analyzed at the urban sites of Lahore and Peshawar, Pakistan in February 2019. Carbonaceous species, water soluble ions, and metal elements were measured to investigate the chemical composition and sources of PM. The dithiothreitol (DTT) consumption rate was measured to evaluate the oxidative potential of PM. Both cities showed a high exposure risk of PM regarding its oxidative potential (DTT). Carbonaceous and some of the elemental species of PM correlated well with DTT in both Lahore and Peshawar. Besides, the DTT of PM in Lahore showed significant positive correlation with most of the measured water soluble ions, however, ions were DTT-inactive in Peshawar. Due to the higher proportions of carbonaceous species and metal elements, Peshawar showed higher mass-normalized DTT activity of PM compared to Lahore although the average PM concentration in Peshawar was lower. The high concentrations of toxic metals also posed serious non-carcinogenic and carcinogenic risks to the residents of both cities. Principle component analysis coupled with multiple linear regression was applied to investigate different source contributions to PM and its oxidative potential. Mixed sources of traffic and road dust resuspension and coal combustion, direct vehicle emission, and biomass burning and formation of secondary aerosol were identified as the major sources of PM in both cities. The findings of this study provide important data for evaluation of the potential health risks of PM and for formulation of efficient control strategies in major cities of Pakistan.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jes.2020.09.014DOI Listing
April 2021

A practical approach for synthesis of biodiesel via non-edible seeds oils using trimetallic based montmorillonite nano-catalyst.

Bioresour Technol 2021 May 17;328:124859. Epub 2021 Feb 17.

Department of Chemical and Environmental Engineering, Faculty of Science and Engineering, University of Nottingham Malaysia, Jalan Broga, Semenyih 43500, Selangor Darul Ehsan, Malaysia. Electronic address:

The potential of new trimetallic (Ce, Cu, La) loaded montmorillonite clay catalyst for synthesizing biodiesel using novel non-edible Celastrus paniculatus Willd seed oil via two-step transesterification reaction has been reported along with catalyst characterization. Transesterification reaction was optimized and maximum biodiesel yield of 89.42% achieved under optimal operating reaction states like; 1:12 oil to methanol ratio, 3.5% of catalyst amount, 120 °C of reaction temperature for 3 h. The predicted and experimental biodiesel yields under these reaction conditions were 89.42 and 89.40%, which showing less than 0.05% variation. Additionally, optimum biodiesel yield can be predicted by drawing 3D surface plots and 2D contour plots using MINITAB 17 software. For the characterization of the obtained biodiesel, analysis including the GC/MS, FT-IR, H NMR and C NMR were applied. The fuel properties of obtained biodiesel agrees well with the different European Union (EU-14214), China (GB/T 20828), and American (ASTM-951, 6751) standards.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biortech.2021.124859DOI Listing
May 2021

Rapidly recurring massive pleural effusion as the initial presentation of sarcoidosis: A case report.

Medicine (Baltimore) 2021 Feb;100(6):e24027

Internal Medicine Department, Hamad Medical Corporation, Doha, Qatar.

Rationale: Sarcoidosis is a multisystem granulomatous disease with unknown etiology. It affects mainly the lungs, but it can affect almost any other organ. Nevertheless, pleural involvement with the development of pleural effusion is relatively rare. It is usually mild and responsive to treatment with systemic steroids. Here we present a case of rapidly recurring massive unilateral pleural effusion caused by sarcoidosis that was resistant to systemic steroids.

Patient Concerns: A 55-year-old lady presented with shortness of breath of 2-months duration. No other respiratory symptoms were reported. On physical examination, there were signs of left-sided pleural effusion, splenomegaly, and inguinal lymph nodes. These findings were confirmed by chest x-ray showing massive pleural effusion. Work up of the effusion revealed an exudative effusion with lymphocyte predominance. Pan-computed tomography scan revealed multiple thoracic, abdominal and inguinal lymphadenopathy; additionally, a left-sided pleural effusion and an enlarged spleen; that contained variable hypodense nodular lesions. Positron emission tomography-computed tomography showed intense uptake in the spleen and the lymph nodes. Inguinal lymph node biopsy showed non-necrotizing granulomatous inflammation. Due to suspicion of malignancy, left medical thoracoscopy was done, and biopsy of the parietal pleura showed nonspecific inflammation without evidence of malignancy or tuberculosis.

Diagnosis: Sarcoidosis was diagnosed based on the finding of the non-necrotizing granulomatous inflammation with no evidence of malignancy or infection on several microbiological and pathological samples.

Interventions: The patient was treated with repeated pleural fluid drainage. Steroids failed to prevent pleural effusion recurrence. Surgical left side pleurodesis was eventually performed.

Outcomes: At more than 1 year follow up, the patient showed no recurrence of pleural effusion or development of any other symptoms.

Lessons: Sarcoidosis may rarely present with massive pleural effusion, as this presentation is rare; it is imperative to rule out other causes of massive pleural effusion. Massive pleural effusion in sarcoidosis may be steroid-resistant. Pleurodesis may have a role in such a scenario.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/MD.0000000000024027DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7886481PMC
February 2021

Microscopic implication and evaluation of herbaceous melliferous plants of southern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa-Pakistan using light and scanning electron microscope.

Microsc Res Tech 2021 Feb 12. Epub 2021 Feb 12.

Department of Plant Sciences, Quaid-i-Azam University Islamabad, Islamabad, Pakistan.

The aim of the present study is to investigate the pollen morphology of melliferous plant taxa of Southern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa-Pakistan. Using light microscope (LM) and scanning electron microscope (SEM), the palynological study of 18 species of melliferous plants namely Calendula arvensis, Cenchrus pennisetiformis, Citrullus colocynthis, Cucumis melo subsp. agrestis var. agrestis, Cucurbita maxima, Cymbopogon jwarancusa, Cynodon dectylon, Dactyloctenium aegyptium, Helianthus annus, Lagenaria siceraria, Launaea procumbens, Luffa cylindrica, Pennisetum glaucum, Saccharum spontaneum, Sonchus asper, Verbesina encelioides, Xanthium strumarium, and Zea mays was carried out. Both qualitative and quantitative characteristics of pollen were studied. Variations were observed in pollen morphology. The dominant pollen shape was prolate-spheroidal (11 species). All the pollen units were monad. The highest exine thickness was found in Citrullus colocynthis (8.45 μm). The maximum polar and equatorial diameter (102 and 97.55 μm) was found in Luffa cylindrica. Similarly, the highest P/E ratio was found in Cucurbita maxima (1.46). Most of the species showed tricolpate and monoporate type of pollen. The exine sculpturing, number of spines per pollen and between colpi and the pollen fertility and sterility provided significant results for the documentation of melliferous plants. Thus, the information listed in this article will prove helpful to identify the potential melliferous plants in the area, geographical origin of the honey, and the availability of pure honey in the local and international market.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jemt.23732DOI Listing
February 2021

Morpho-palynological assessment of some species of family Asteraceae and Lamiaceae of District Bannu, Pakistan on the bases of light microscope & scanning electron microscopy.

Microsc Res Tech 2021 Feb 1. Epub 2021 Feb 1.

Department of Plant Sciences, Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad, Pakistan.

Pollen micro-morphological features have proven to be helpful for the plant taxonomists in the identification and classification of plants. The aim of this study was to evaluate the palynological features of family Asteraceae and Lamiaceae from flora of District Bannu, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan using both scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and light microscope (LM) for their taxonomic importance. Pollen of seven Asteraceous species belonging to four genera and four Lamiaceae species categorized into four genera were collected from different localities of research area. The present research work provides detailed information of diverse morpho-palynological characters both qualitatively and quantitatively including pollen shape, type, diameter, P/E ratio, exine sculpturing and thickness. Type of pollen in Asteraceae and Lamiaceae was ranged from tricolporate, tricolpate, trizonocolpate and hexazonocolpate. The maximum polar diameter (40.05 μm) and equatorial diameter (37.66 μm) was observed in the Ajuga bracteoosa while minimum polar and equatorial diameter was noted in Isodon rugosus (11.10 μm) and Erigeron canadensis (13.20 μm) respectively. Sculpturing of exine include; echinate, reticulate scabrate, aerolate, reticulate-verrucate, reticulate-scabrate, perforate and reticulate to perforate. Exine thickness was examined maximum 1.50 μm in Helianthus tuberosus, whereas minimum in Conyza Canadensis (0.16 μm). The pollen fertility was found highest in C Canadensis (83.33%) and lowest in Ajuga bracteosa (58.06%). The observed pollen morphology has many valuable qualitative and quantitative attributes for the better understanding of their taxonomy and play significant role in correct identification.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jemt.23681DOI Listing
February 2021

Human papillomavirus infection and p53 mutation in esophageal squamous cell carcinoma and its impact on treatment outcome.

J Cancer Res Ther 2020 Dec;16(Supplement):S150-S155

Department of Radiation Oncology, Cancer Research Institute, Swami Rama Himalayan University, Dehradun, Uttarakhand, India.

Introduction: Human papillomavirus (HPV) is emerging as a risk factor for esophageal squamous carcinoma. The prognostic value of the HPV status has been investigated. However, the results are much controversial.

Aim: This study aims to document the association of HPV infection and mutation of p53 gene in esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) and its impact on treatment outcome.

Subjects And Methods: The study was conducted over a period of 12 months. A total of 30 cases of ESCC who were primarily to be treated with radiotherapy/chemoradiotherapy were included in the study. All the tissue samples for biopsy were subjected to immunohistochemistry to study p53 and p16 expression, which is a surrogate marker for HPV. The patients were treated by radiotherapy alone or concurrent chemoradiotherapy depending on performance status and stage of disease. The impact of p16 and p53 on overall survival (OS) and disease-free survival (DFS) was determined.

Results: The median OS of HPV-positive patients was 22 months (95% confidence interval [CI] 12-31) as compared to 13 months (95% CI 7-18) for HPV-negative patients (P = 0.298). The median DFS for HPV-positive patients was 16 months (95% CI 7-24) as compared to 5 months (95% CI 4-6) for HPV-negative patients (P = 0.048). The median OS of p53-positive patients was 13 months (95% CI 6.7-19) as compared to 22 months (95% CI 12.7-31.2) for p53-negative patients (P = 0.080). The median DFS for p53-positive patients was 5 months (95% CI 3.7-6.2) as compared to 22 months (95% CI 15.7-29.4) for p53-negative patients (P = 0.014).

Conclusion: Clinical findings of our result can be used to sum up that both HPV infection and p53 mutation status are reliable biomarkers and can help clinicians to predict treatment outcome and prognosticate patients better.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4103/jcrt.JCRT_296_17DOI Listing
December 2020

Application of multimicroscopic techniques (LM and SEM) in comparative palynological study of Asteroideae members, inhabited in Pakistan.

Microsc Res Tech 2020 Dec 17. Epub 2020 Dec 17.

Department of Botany, Lahore College for Women University, Lahore, Pakistan.

In the present study light and scanning electron microscopic approaches were used to study the palynological variations among 30 Asteroideae members. Variety of qualitative and quantitative palynological characters like pollen shape and type, pollen sculpturing, pollen size, P/E ratio, exine and intine thickness, interspecific difference, colpi size, pore size, spines length, spine width, and pollen fertility were observed. Results reported remarkable variations among pollen characters of studied taxa. The shape of pollen grains in polar and equatorial views varied from specie to specie such as spheroidal, prolate, oblate, subspheroidal, oblate spheroidal, prolate spheroidal, suboblate, and sub prolate. Bidens pilosa L. showed maximum pollen size in both polar and equatorial views, whereas minimum pollen size in polar view was found in Tetraneuris scaposa (DC.) Greene. (i.e., 30.5 μm) and in equatorial view was found in Cosmos sulphureus Cav. (25.5 μm).The highest P/E ratio (1.39 μm) was measured in Glebionis coronaria L. The values of exine and intine thickness also varied. Tricolporate, tetracolporate, trizonocolporate, pentoporate, and polypentoporate pollen types were examined. Spinateand echinate pollen sculpturingobserved under SEM. Variations in spine length and width also recorded. The maximum pollen fertility (98%) was measured in Chrysanthemum morifolium Ramat. and the lowest (56%) was recorded in Thymophylla tenuiloba (DC.) Small. It was concluded that the variations in qualitative and quantitative characters were seemed to be valuable for the taxonomic investigations of Asteroideae taxa.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jemt.23667DOI Listing
December 2020

Pollen morphology of family Solanaceae and its taxonomic significance.

An Acad Bras Cienc 2020 11;92(3):e20181221. Epub 2020 Dec 11.

Quaid-i-Azam University, Department of Plants Sciences, Faculty of Plant Sciences, University Road, 45320 Islamabad, Pakistan.

The pollen micro-morphology of family Solanaceae from the different phytogeographical region of Pakistan has been assessed. In this study, thirteen species belonging to ten genera of Solanaceae have been studied using light and scanning electron microscopy for both qualitative and quantitative features. Solanaceae is a eurypalynous family and a significant variation was observed in pollen size, shape, polarity and exine sculpturing. Examined plant species includes, Brugmansia suaveolens, Capsicum annuum, Cestrum parqui, Datura innoxia, Solanum lycopersicum, Nicotiana plumbaginifolia, Petunia hybrida, Physalis minima, Solanum americanum, Solanum erianthum, Solanum melongena, Solanum surattense and Withania somnifera. The prominent pollen type is tricolporate and shed as a monad. High pollen fertility reflects that observed taxa are well-known in the study area. Based on the observed pollen traits a taxonomic key was developed for the accurate and quick identification of species. Principal Component Analysis was performed that shows some morphological features are the main characters in the identification. Cluster Analysis was performed that separate the plant species in a cluster. The findings highlight the importance of Palyno-morphological features in the characterization and identification of Solanaceous taxa. It is concluded that both LM and SEM significantly play a key role in correct identification of taxa studied.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/0001-3765202020181221DOI Listing
December 2020

Seed morphology: An addition to the taxonomy of Astragaleae and Trifolieae (Leguminosae: Papilionoidae) from Pakistan.

Microsc Res Tech 2020 Dec 5. Epub 2020 Dec 5.

Department of Plant Sciences, Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad, Pakistan.

Seed morphology was described in detail for 12 species belonging to 5 genera of tribes Astragaleae and Trifolieae (Leguminosae; Papilionoideae) using scanning electron microscopy (SEM) to evaluate the taxonomic relevance of macromorphological and micromorphological seed characters. The study aims to search for diagnostic seed ultrastructural features that may help to elucidate species identification. For SEM analysis, seed morphological characters including seed form and shape, color and size, ornamentation, epidermal cell shape, and anticlinal wall pattern were investigated. As a result of the study, species-specific characters have been determined. Based on seed exomorphology, three characteristic cell patterns; irregular, round, and flat were observed. In majority of studied taxa, species may be further differentiated based on seed shape, size, and surface ornamentation. The inconsistency in testa cell pattern, shape, and distribution of papillae or protuberances may probably give further insight and significant morphological features at specific and generic level within the tribe. This study illustrated that considerable taxonomic knowledge can be obtained by examining the seed characters of Astragaleae and Trifolieae, particularly at the species level. The results demonstrated that the use of SEM in seed morphology could play a role in the identification of taxa particularly at genus and species level. Twelve species of Astragaleae and Trifolieae were studied in order to describe and investigate the seed morphology and to evaluate the diagnostic value of this character using a SEM. A broader taxon sampling is required for classification at generic and tribal level, besides molecular and phylogenetic studies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jemt.23666DOI Listing
December 2020

Seasonal variation of dicarboxylic acids in PM in Beijing: Implications for the formation and aging processes of secondary organic aerosols.

Sci Total Environ 2021 Apr 15;763:142964. Epub 2020 Oct 15.

State Key Joint Laboratory of Environment Simulation and Pollution Control, School of Environment, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875, China.

Dicarboxylic acids are a group of highly oxidized components, which can provide insights into the formation mechanism and aging process of secondary organic aerosols (SOA). Based on the 12-h day and night PM samples collected in downtown Beijing in January, April, July and October of 2017, dicarboxylic acids and relevant components were measured to investigate their seasonal variation pattern and sources. High concentrations of the identified organic acids were observed, following the decreasing order of July > January > October > April. The high fractions of phthalic acid and maleic acid in January indicated severe aromatic SOA pollution during the sampling period in winter, and the high malonic acid to succinic acid and malic acid to succinic acid ratios in July suggested strong photochemical formation over the sampling period in summer. Based on the calculation of principle component analysis and multiple linear regression, water-soluble organic acids were mainly formed from the aerosol aging process during the sampling periods except for January, while water-soluble organic carbon (WSOC) mostly originated from combustion sources. Correlation analysis was conducted between the CO-normalized concentrations of organic acids and PM, O, as well as the meteorological parameters. The results suggested that gas-phase photooxidation contributed significantly to the formation of these organic acids during the entire sampling period, and the aqueous-phase process played an important role over the severe haze event in January. Our results also suggested that the intensity of photooxidation and the aging degree of SOA were enhanced along with the reduction of PM in Beijing in recent years.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2020.142964DOI Listing
April 2021

North-Western Himalayan Common Beans: Population Structure and Mapping of Quantitative Anthracnose Resistance Through Genome Wide Association Study.

Front Plant Sci 2020 6;11:571618. Epub 2020 Oct 6.

Plant Virology and Molecular Plant Pathology Laboratory, Division of Plant Pathology, SKUAST-Kashmir, Srinagar, India.

Common bean ( L.) is an important legume crop of north-western (NW) Himalayan region and the major disease that causes catastrophic loss to the crop is anthracnose, which is caused by . The pathogen is highly diverse and most of the commercial cultivars are susceptible to different races prevalent in the region. The lack of information on the genomic regions associated with anthracnose resistance in NW Himalayan common bean population prompted us to dissect Quantitative Resistance Loci (QRLs) against major anthracnose races. In this study, 188 common bean landraces collected from NW region were screened against five important anthracnose races and 113 bean genotypes showed resistance to one or multiple races. Genotyping by sequencing (GBS) was performed on a panel of 192 bean lines (4 controls plus 188 Indian beans) and 22,589 SNPs were obtained that are evenly distributed. Population structure analysis of 192 bean genotypes categorized 188 Indian beans into two major clusters representing Andean and Mesoamerican gene pools with obvious admixtures. Many QRLs associated with anthracnose resistance to Indian virulences (race 3, 87, and 503) are located at Pv04 within the gene models that encode typical resistance gene signatures. The QRLs associated with race 73 are located on Pv08 and overlaps with anthracnose resistance gene. A SNP located at distal end of Pv11 in a gene model Phvul.011G202300 which encodes a LRR with a typical NB-ARC domain showed association with race 73 resistance. Common bean genomic regions located at Pv03, Pv09, and Pv11 showed association with resistance to anthracnose race 2047. The present study showed presence of many novel bean genomic regions associated with anthracnose resistance. The presence of and genes in our material is encouraging for breeding durable anthracnose resistant cultivars for the region.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fpls.2020.571618DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7573075PMC
October 2020

Pneumothorax In Covid-19 Pneumonia: A case series.

Respir Med Case Rep 2020 21;31:101265. Epub 2020 Oct 21.

Hazm Mebaireek Hospital, Hamad Medical Corporation, Doha, Qatar.

Background: Coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) is an infectious disease caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). It mainly affects the lungs and common symptoms are fever, cough and shortness of breath. Pneumothorax has been noted to complicate Covid-19 cases requiring hospital admission, however the exact incidence and risk factors are still unknown.

Discussion: We present a series of 3 cases of primary spontaneous pneumothorax with Covid-19 pneumonia. All cases in our series did not require positive pressure ventilation and none had any pre-existing lung disease. All were never smokers and had favourable outcomes despite having severe Covid-19 with a pneumothorax during the course of the disease. In our literature review we discuss several plausible mechanisms and risk factors resulting in a pneumothorax with Covid-19.

Conclusion: Our cases are a reminder that an acute deterioration with hypoxia in a Covid-19 patient could indicate a pneumothorax. Pneumothorax is one of the reported complications in Covid-19 and clinician vigilance is required during assessment of patients, as both share the common symptom of breathlessness and therefore can mimic each other.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.rmcr.2020.101265DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7576439PMC
October 2020

Application and implication of scanning electron microscopy for evaluation of palyno-morphological features of Vitaceae from Pakistan.

Microsc Res Tech 2021 Apr 16;84(4):608-617. Epub 2020 Oct 16.

Department of Plant Sciences, Quaid-i-Azam University Islamabad, Islamabad, Pakistan.

The present study aimed to investigate the palyno-morphological features of species of family Vitaceae from Pakistan. A total of nine species, belonging to four genera were collected, pressed, identified, and then analyzed microscopically. Both quantitative and qualitative characters of the pollen grains were recorded including polar and equatorial diameter, P/E ratio, number of colpi and pores, exine thickness and shapes of the pollen in both polar and equatorial view, and exine sculpturing using Leica microscope fitted with camera Meiji Infinity 1 and then analyzed statistically using software IBM SPSS Statistics 20. The results of the present study demonstrated the variations in polar and equatorial diameter, exine thickness, P/E ratio, pollen shape, and exine sculpturing of the studied species and highlighted the significance of pollen morphology as an identification tool. The present study may contribute to better understand the classification at genus level, which will support the future phylogenetic characterization of the family.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jemt.23619DOI Listing
April 2021

Synthesis and Structural Characterization of Biofuel From Cocklebur sp., Using Zinc Oxide Nano-Particle: A Novel Energy Crop for Bioenergy Industry.

Front Bioeng Biotechnol 2020 4;8:756. Epub 2020 Sep 4.

Department of Biosciences, COMSATS University Islamabad, Islamabad, Pakistan.

This study is reporting the biofuel synthesis and characterization from the novel non-edible feedstock cocklebur seeds oil. The Cocklebur crop seeds oil was studied as a potential source for biofuel production based on the chemical, structural and fuel properties analysis. The oil expression and FFAs content in cocklebur crop was reported 37.2% and 0.47 gram KOH/g, using soxhlet apparatus and acid base titration method, respectively. The maximum conversion and yield of the cocklebur crop seeds non-edible oil to biofuel was pursued 93.33%, using transesterification process. The optimum protocol for maximum conversion yield was adjusted: 1:7 oil-methanol molar ratios, ZnO nano-particle concentration 0.2 gm (w/w), reaction temperature 60°C, and reaction time 45 min, respectively. ZnO nano-particle was prepared by a modified sol-gel method, using gelatin and the particle was XRD, TEM, XPS, and UV-vis spectroscopies. Qualitatively, the cocklebur crop synthesized biofuel was quantified and structurally characterized by GC/MS, FT-IR, NMR, and AAS spectroscopies. Quantitatively, the fuel properties of cocklebur crop biofuel was analyzed and compared with the international ASTM and EN standards.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fbioe.2020.00756DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7498747PMC
September 2020

Palynological characteristics of selected Lamioideae taxa and its taxonomic significance.

Microsc Res Tech 2021 Mar 21;84(3):471-479. Epub 2020 Sep 21.

Key Laboratory of Vegetation Ecology, Ministry of Education, Institute of Grass Science, North East Normal University, Changchun, China.

Lamioideae comprised the second-largest subfamily in Lamiaceae. Although considerable progress has recently been made in the taxonomic study of Lamioideae, the subfamily remains one of the most poorly investigated subfamily in Lamiaceae. Therefore, the present study was designed with the aim to document the pollen micromorphology of some selected Lamioideae taxa and its taxonomic significance from Pakistan. Pollen micromorphological features were observed using scanning electron microscopy. The pollen grains are monad, tricolpate, radially/bilateral symmetrical. The pollen grains were small to medium-sized having oblate, oblate/subspheroidal, and subspheroidal shape. Exine sculpturing was observed as reticulate, microreticulate, and bireticulate. The colpus surface ornamentation was found as verrucate, gemmate, scabrate, and psilate. There was a considerable variation between the species in the micromorphology, that is, the coarseness of the reticulum, thickness of the muri comprising the reticulum and the number of secondary lumina per primary lumen. Hence, this study documented the pollen morphology of some selected taxa of the subfamily Lamioideae from Pakistan and strengthens the taxonomic identification of subfamily based on pollen characters, which helps in the correct identification, discrimination of the species of Lamioideae at generic and species level.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jemt.23603DOI Listing
March 2021

Implication, visualization, and characterization through scanning electron microscopy as a tool to identify nonedible oil seeds.

Microsc Res Tech 2021 Mar 20;84(3):379-393. Epub 2020 Sep 20.

Department of Environmental Science, International Islamic University, Islamabad, Pakistan.

Second-generation biofuels prove to be a distinctive and renewable source of sustainable energy and cleaner environment. The current study focuses on the exploration and identification of four nonedible sources, that is, Brassica oleracea L., Carthamus oxyacantha M.Bieb., Carthamus tinctorius L., and Beaumontia grandiflora Wall., utilizing light microscopy (LM) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) for studying the detailed micromorphological features of these seeds. LM revealed that size ranges from 3 to 20 mm. furthermore, a great variety of color is observed from pitch black to greenish gray and yellowish white to off white. Seeds ultrastructure study with the help of SEM revealed a great variety in shape, size, color, sculpturing and periclinal wall shape, and so on. Followed by the production of fatty acid methyl esters from a novel source, that is, seeds oil of Brassica oleracea L. (seed oil content 42.20%, FFA content 0.329 mg KOH/g) using triple metal impregnated montmorillonite clay catalyst (Cu-Mg-Zn-Mmt). Catalyst was characterized using SEM-EDX, FT-IR. Maximum yield of Brassica oleracea L. biodiesel (87%) was obtained at the conditions; 1:9 of oil to methanol ratio, 0.5 g of catalyst, 5 hr reaction time, and 90°C of temperature. Synthesized biodiesel was characterized by FT-IR, GC-MS, and NMR. Fuel properties of the Brassica oleracea L. FAMES were determined and found in accordance with ASTM standards.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jemt.23595DOI Listing
March 2021

Pollen diversity and its implications to the systematics of mimosaceous species by LM and SEM.

Microsc Res Tech 2021 Jan 27;84(1):42-55. Epub 2020 Aug 27.

Department of Plant Sciences, Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad, Pakistan.

In this study we have discussed pollen morphology of 14 mimosaceous species belonging to five genera by using light microscopy (LM) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The palynological features of species were determined by both qualitative and quantitative characters. The qualitative characters include pollen shape, colpi arrangement, and exine sculpturing. Oblate spheroidal shaped pollens were noted in Albizia procera, Albizia lebbeck, Acacia tortilis, Acacia ampliceps, and Acacia modesta, subprolate shaped pollen in Leucaena leucocephala, Prosopis julifera, and Acacia nilotica, prolate pollen in Acacia farnesiana and Prosopis glandulosa while spheroidal, sub spheroidal and sub oblate pollen grains were observed in Acacia catechu, Mimosa himalayana, Prosopis cineraria, respectively. Sparsely foveolate, reticulate, scabrate, and scrobiclate exine sculpturing were observed. Colpi with sunken ornamentation were seen in P. cineraria, P. glandulosa, P. juliflora, and L. leucocephala while colpi were absent in rest of the studied species. The quantitative characters were statistically studied using SPSS software. The current study gives important morpho-palynological characters for identifying and validation of close related and similar taxa which will aid to the phylogenetic analysis of Mimosaceae family.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jemt.23563DOI Listing
January 2021

Quality assurance and authentication of herbal drug (Argyrolobium roseum and Viola stocksii) through comparative light and scanning electron microscopy.

Microsc Res Tech 2021 Jan 17;84(1):28-37. Epub 2020 Aug 17.

Adıyaman University, Faculty of Pharmacy, Department of Basic Science of Pharmacy, Adıyaman, Turkey.

The quality assurance and authentication of crude herbal drugs play important role in the effective therapeutic effect of herbal drug and their products. There are many reported problems in quality assurance of herbal crude drugs concerning to their correct identification. The present study was designed with the aim to document the authentication and quality assurance of the herbal crude drugs (Argyrolobium roseum and Viola stocksii) thorough light microscopy (LM) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The detailed foliar anatomical studies showed polygonal epidermal cells having anticlinal walls in Argyrolobium roseum while rounded epidermal cells were observed in Viola stocksii. The anomocytic stomata type was observed in Argrolobium roseum while actinocytic was noticed in Viola stocksii. The pollen of studied species appeared as tricolporate showing reticulate exine sculpturing in Argrolobium roseum while fine perforations were recorded in Viola stocksii. Furthermore, quantitative analysis of phenols, flavonoids, and antioxidant activity showed high flavonoid and phenol content in Argyrolobium roseum as compared with Viola stocksii. It was observed that Argyrolobium roseum was discriminated from the Viola stocksii based on the leaf and pollen micromorphological traits by using LM and SEM techniques. It was concluded that LM and SEM techniques were found useful for the quality assurance of botanicals and their authentication.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jemt.23560DOI Listing
January 2021

Spore morphology and leaf epidermal anatomy as a taxonomic source in the identification of Asplenium species from Malakand division Pakistan.

Microsc Res Tech 2020 Nov 21;83(11):1354-1368. Epub 2020 Jul 21.

Department of Plant Sciences, Quaid- i- Azam University Islamabad, Islamabad, Pakistan.

Several studies have demonstrated the usefulness of leaf epidermal, and spore morphological characters in the taxonomy of genus Asplenium. However, works on the Pakistani species of Asplenium are not existent. With the objective to verify the efficacy of leaf epidermal and spore morphological traits, the leaf epidermis and spore morphology in nine Asplenium species occurring in Malakand division was studied. The spores were studied under light microscope (LM) and scanning electron microscope (SEM), whereas for leaf epidermal anatomy, the LM was used. The spores are monolete, ellipsoidal in shape, the equatorial and polar diameter ranges between 28.3 and 50.2 × 27.6 and 45.8 μm. The exospore thickness varied from 0.5 to 3.8 μm. The perispore is 0.8-3.5 μm thick, ornamented, and morphologically variable. The spores characters specifically the perispore ornamentation are useful in distinguishing species within the genus. The irregular spore shape and unusual development of perispore wall surface characterize aborted spores in the species of Asplenium × alternifolium. The most informative quantitative characters appeared to be length and width of epidermal cells, and length and width of stomata were useful to distinguish species. The most significant qualitative characters to distinguish species were the anticlinal wall pattern. Our study has shown that considerable variations exist in the leaf epidermis of Asplenium species, at least some of which has taxonomic significance. We confirmed the prevalent taxonomic value of stomatal and epidermal cells traits. The leaf epidermal anatomy and spore morphological features showed to be a good source of information for taxonomy of the genus Asplenium.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jemt.23527DOI Listing
November 2020

Comparative foliar anatomical and pollen morphological studies of Acanthaceae using light microscope and scanning electron microscope for effective microteaching in community.

Microsc Res Tech 2020 Sep 8;83(9):1103-1117. Epub 2020 Jul 8.

Department of Plant Sciences, Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad, Pakistan.

In this study, foliar anatomy and pollen morphology of 10 species of Acanthaceae has been investigated using light and scanning electron microscopy. The study was aimed to highlight the role of microscopy in microteaching at community for proper characterization of plants using palyno-anatomical characters including pollen type, exine sculpturing, shape of epidermal cells, pattern of anticlinal wall, type and size of stomata, and trichome. Most of the species have polygonal cell shapes but some species have irregular, tetragonal, and pentagonal shape of epidermal cells. The largest epidermal cell length on adaxial and abaxial surface were observed in Asystasia gangetica 66.95 and 87.40 μm whereas least was observed on adaxial surface in Justicia adhatoda 36.9 μm and on abaxial surface in Barleria cristata 35.65 μm. In anatomy, species have diacytic type of stomata, whereas stomata of paracytic type observed in two species, while in A. gangetica cyclocytic type of stomata are present. Quantitively on abaxial surface, largest stomata length 29.9 μm and width 24.30 μm was noted in B. cristata. While shortest stomata length was observed in Ruellia prostrata 25.95 μm whereas minimum width of stomata was examined in Barleria acanthoides 2.05 μm. The diversity of trichomes are present in all species except in Ruellia brittoniana. Acanthaceae can be characterized by exhibiting different pollen morphology having five types of pollen shapes, prolate, spheroidal, perprolate, subprolate, and oblate spheroidal. Exine peculiarities showing variations such as reticulate, granulate, coarsely reticulate, lophoreticulate, perforate tectate, and granulate surface were examined.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jemt.23502DOI Listing
September 2020

Population structure of Venturia inaequalis, a hemibiotrophic fungus, under different host resistance specificities in the Kashmir valley.

Arch Microbiol 2020 Oct 12;202(8):2245-2253. Epub 2020 Jun 12.

Plant Virology and Molecular Plant Pathology Laboratory, Division of Plant Pathology, SKUAST-Kashmir, Shalimar, Srinagar, 190025, India.

Venturia inaequalis is a notorious fungal pathogen and show classical gene for gene interaction with its apple host. Neutral markers provide clues about history, evolutionary potential, genetic diversity and population structure of V. inaequalis. The genetic diversity and population structure of fungus indicates that the pathogen is highly diverse with the capacity to breach the scab resistance genes. In the present study, we collected 108 V. inaequalis isolates from three apple cultivars differing in Rvi1 resistance gene. Based on the AMOVA, the variation was mostly distributed among the isolates, providing evidence of non-existence of subpopulation in orchards thus founder population is difficult to arise in Kashmir apple orchards. Pair wise genetic differentiation is less due to regular occurrence of gene flow between the populations residing on different orchard as infected material is transported without stringent quarantine measures. Based on principal coordinate analysis and clustering algorithm as implemented in STRUCTURE, we observed admixture between the two subpopulations, which is quite low, suggesting the existence of pre-zygotic and post-zygotic barriers to gene flow and we cannot rule out the existence of other structures shared by accessions belonging to different varieties. Due to the continuous increase in introduction and monoculture of apple varieties, mixed orchard with different host resistance specificities are more suitable for managing the apple scab in Kashmir valley.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00203-020-01950-8DOI Listing
October 2020

Light and scanning electron microscopy-based foliar micro morphological tools for the identification of fodder grass taxa.

Microsc Res Tech 2020 Aug 6;83(8):953-978. Epub 2020 May 6.

Department of Botany, University of Education, Lahore, Pakistan.

Fertile plain of Central Punjab Pakistan is rich with fodder grasses and from centuries the local inhabitants of this area have been using their regional grasses for ruminant feeding. However, they always faced difficulties in identification because of their overlapping vernacular names, more or less identical leaf shapes, indefinite variations in stem branching pattern, and reduced floral parts. Hence, the current study has provided a detailed and comprehensive micro-morphological analysis of 53 ethnobotanical fodder grass taxa. A variety of quantitative and qualitative leaf epidermal micromorphological traits was studied and results reported epidermal characters like stomatal index, silica bodies, prickles, microhairs, hook cells as most diagnostic in delimitation of species, and genera. As stomatal index was 79% in Poa annua while in its closely related species Poa infirmai was 85%. Similarly, Cenchrus ciliaris can be differentiated from Cenchrus pennisetiformis on the basis of silica body shape as butterfly shaped in former and dumbbell shaped in later one. Moreover, prickles were present in Chrysopogon aucheri while absent in Chrysopogon zizanioides. Hence, overall this study declared that diversity and variations in foliar micromorphological characters are valuable and supportive in the identification of grasses at the specific and generic level.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jemt.23490DOI Listing
August 2020

Photocatalytic degradation of methyl orange from wastewater using a newly developed Fe-Cu-Zn-ZSM-5 catalyst.

Environ Sci Pollut Res Int 2020 Jul 2;27(21):26239-26248. Epub 2020 May 2.

School of Engineering, RMIT University, Melbourne, VIC, 3000, Australia.

Photo-Fenton oxidation is one of the most promising processes to remove recalcitrant contaminants from industrial wastewater. In this study, we developed a novel heterogeneous catalyst to enhance photo-Fenton oxidation. Multi-composition (Fe-Cu-Zn) on aluminosilicate zeolite (ZSM-5) was prepared using a chemical process. Subsequently, the synthesized catalyst was characterized by using X-ray diffraction (XRD), field emission scanning electron microscope (FESEM), high-resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM), energy dispersive X-ray (spectroscopy) (EDX), and Brunauer-Emmett-Teller (BET). Activity of the synthesized catalyst is analysed to degrade an azo dye, methyl orange. Taguchi method is used to optimize color removal and total carbon content (TOC) removal. The dye completely degraded, and 76% of TOC removal was obtained at optimized process conditions. The amount of catalyst required for the desired degradation of dye significantly reduced up to 92% and 30% compared to conventional homogenous and heterogeneous Fenton oxidation processes, respectively.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11356-020-08940-9DOI Listing
July 2020