Tag Archives: 7-4

Forest disturbance and degradation in western Himalayan moist temperate forest of Pakistan

Javed Iqbal

Department of Silviculture, Faculty of Forestry and Wood Sciences, Czech University of Life Sciences, Prague, Czech Republic

Department of Forestry, Shaheed Benazir Bhutto University, Sheringal, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan


This research aims to investigate forest disturbances and the underlying factors driving forest degradation in the past several decades in the western Himalaya, Pakistan. The results revealed four major disturbance sources (geological, climatic, biotic, and anthropogenic). Data (frequency of events) were recorded using point and fixed area methods (0.1 ha). The analysis shows average frequency (0.045 or 27% of disturbance) through climatic sources (natural fire, wind, snow & floods, which shows the impact of climate change on these mountains; Landslides damaged large areas (11%–16 %) through a geological source. Humans also have a great impact on land clearing for agriculture and infrastructure (35%) from logging, shifting cultivation and counter fire. Most of the disturbances occurred on higher altitudes (>2,800 m a.s.l.), whereas the mid-range elevation (1,900–2,700 m a.s.l.) were only influenced by snow. The landslide was recorded on low elevation (>1,900 m a.s.l.), but there are some landslide events that were observed on a higher elevation. This study focused on the stability of mountain forests for long-term planning. Anthropogenic activities need to be restricted and more afforestation projects need to plan, that increase the forest-covered area.

Keywords: Disturbance, Altitude, Degradation, Moist-temperate climate, Sustainability

Detection of bacteriocin like substances from normal skin microflora as alternative to conventional antibioti

Reazul Karim*, Nuruddin Mahmud, Mohammad Abdul Hakim

Department of Microbiology, University of Chittagong, Chittagong – 4331, Bangladesh


Gradual increase of antibiotic resistance is a global problem. In this study, we have developed an alternative approach as an alternative to conventional antibiotics from the natural source to solve the antibiotic resistance problem. Some normal microflora were isolated from healthy human skin, their antimicrobial efficacy were examined against some skin and intestinal pathogens initially by cross streak method and finally by disc and well diffusion method. Two normal microflora (e.g., Bacillus licheniformis and Corynebacterium jeikeium) were observed producing antimicrobial metabolites which were effective against Klebsiella pneumoniae subsp. pneumoniae, with maximum antimicrobial activity at 250C, 48h, pH 9 and 370C, 72h, pH 7 respectively. Only the antimicrobial metabolites produced by Bacillus licheniformis was detected as bacteriocin like substances which was further confirmed as antimicrobial peptide through papain treatment. Efficacy of crude bacteriocin like substances was compared with 10 commercially available antibiotics against Klebsiella pneumoniae subsp. pneumoniae. Of these, 4 antibiotics were found resistant but crude bacteriocin like substances along with 6 other antibiotics showed remarkable susceptibility. Therefore, more studies on the efficacy of this bacteriocin like substances needs to be done to fully understand its mechanism and potentiality as novel antimicrobials.

Keywords: Antimicrobial metabolites, Bacteriocin, Antibiotic resistance, Normal microbiota

Multivariate assessment to determine drought tolerant genotypes to combat drought risk in wheat (Triticum aestivum L.)

Saira Sattar1, Muhammad Kashif1, Rabail Afzal1, Muazim Ali2

1Department of Plant Breeding and Genetics, University of Agriculture, Faisalabad-38040, Pakistan

2Department of Agronomy, University of Agriculture, Faisalabad-38040, Pakistan


Wheat is one of the leading cereal crops of the world. Being a staple food in Pakistan it gains more consideration by the specialists. With the increasing population and fluctuation in climatic conditions, it requires more attention to save people from hunger. Drought is one of the yield threatening stress in wheat crop and alarming for food security. In developing countries where water resources are not satisfied according to the crop requirement, drought tolerant/resistant genotypes are key to feed people. Although MAS selection and other advances in molecular breeding are done widely to compete with such stresses but still it is not contributing efficiently so breeding efforts should be emphasized to cope with drought stressed areas. Hence, there is a need to do genetic improvement through advanced breeding efforts and evaluation of best performing genotypes to get new hybrid/variety by combining their genetic potential in a proper way. By developing specific crosses and selection through proper breeder’s eye, genetic variability can be created for best executing genotypes that will also increase our germplasm. In wheat crop, genetic gain has been successfully brought out through breeding efforts by the breeders. The present research is done to gain genetic variability by combining alleles through hybridization and analyze yield contributing traits under drought stress and normal environment to select the yield boosting genotypes for this stress. Yield influencing traits are evaluated and ultimately exploitation of best genotype is done based on difference of performance and adaptability of genotypes under normal and stressed conditions.

Keywords: Wheat, Drought stress, Biplot analysis, Combining ability, Genetic effects

Prevalence study of weeds in some economic orchards trees

Haifa Abdul Aziz Sakit Alhaithloul

Department of Biology, College of Sciences, Jouf University, Sakaka, Saudi Arabia


The objective of this work is to study the vegetation composition and variety of weeds in olive (Olea europaea L.) and date palm (Phoenix dactylifera L.) orchard trees in Aljouf, Saudi Arabia. The current study revealed the registration of 53 species affiliating to 51 genera in 17 families. A large number of species were registered in the family (Poaceae) that is represented by 13 species, while 11, 8 and 4 species registered in families Asteraceae, Boraginaceae and Amaranthaceae respectively. The TWINSPAN classification applied in the 40 stands resulted in 4 vegetation categories (A, B, C & D). Each vegetation category represented a group of stands. In this study, the therophytes are the most abundant life form which represented 64% of the collected species, followed by chamaephytes and hemicryptophytes are each represented by 13%, Geophytes by 8%, and phanerophytes by 2% of species. Three indicators of diversity were calculated, the species richness for vegetation group B shows a significant higher (14.04 species/stand) than the other vegetation groups, while no significant differences were interpreted by Shannon index among the different vegetation groups. On the other hand, the evenness index for vegetation group B was significantly higher than the other vegetation groups. The present study provides essential information about the ecology of weeds in olive and dates palm agroecosystem and it acts as a driving force to monitor the weedy vegetation changes in Aljouf region.

Keywords: Olea europaea, Phoenix dactylifera, Weed flora

Congress grass possess herbicidal potential against weeds in wheat fields

Muhammad Asad1, Khuram Mubeen2, Naeem Sarwar3, Muhammad Shehzad4, Mudassir Aziz2,

Muhammad Tariq5, Muhammad Ahmad5, Muhammad Mudassar6, Muhammad Rasheed7

1Wheat Wide Crosses Programme, National Agricultural Research Centre, Islamabad, Pakistan

2Department of Agronomy, MNS University of Agriculture, Multan, Pakistan

3Department of Agronomy, Baha ud Din Zakariya University Multan Pakistan

4Department of Agronomy, The University of Poonch Rawalakot (AJK) Pakistan

5Agronomy Section, Central Cotton Research Institute, Multan Pakistan

6Dept. of Agronomy, PMAS Arid Agriculture University, Rawalpindi, Pakistan

7Plant Genetics Resources Institute, National Agricultural Research Centre, Islamabad, Pakistan


An understanding about occurrence of weed species and patterns of change in incidence is dynamic in emerging weed managing approaches and give directions to future study endeavors. To appraise this threat, we studied the allelopathic effect of aqueous extracts of different parts of invasive weed congress grass, Parthenium (Parthenium hysterophorus L.) to biologically minimized weed risk in Wheat in 2012-13. Aqueous extracts of different plant parts (root, shoot, leaf, fruit and entire plant) of Parthenium were applied for three times as pre-emergence, post emergence and pre + post emergence. No significant grain yield differences were noticed between leaf extract and whole plant extract. Maximum weed density reduction (85.50%), weed dry biomass reduction (77.21%), weed control efficiency (85.67%), plant height (91.44 cm), biological yield (13426 kg ha-1) and grain yield (4437 kg ha-1) were found where leaf extract was applied as pre emergence spray. Whole plant extract sprayed as twice i.e. once as pre emergence and secondly as post emergence also gave better results showing weed density reduction (79.93%), weed dry biomass reduction (73.77%), weed control efficiency (80.09% ), biological yield (12253 kg ha-1) and grain yield (4414 kg ha-1). On other hand 11.08% decrease in grain yield occurred where fruit extract was applied as post emergence spray. Therefore for better wheat grain yield and reduced weed risk farmers can use spray of leaf extract of parthenium before weed emergence.

Keywords: Aqueous extract, Bioherbicide, Weeds, Wheat, Parthenium hysterophorus L

Isolation and identification of keratinolytic bacteria from Jember, Indonesia as a biodegradation agent of chicken feather wastes

Sutoyo Sutoyo1,2*, Subandi Subandi3, Tri Ardyati1, Suharjono Suharjono1

1Department of Biology, Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences, Brawijaya University, Jl. Veteran, 65145 Malang Jawa Timur, Indonesia

2Department of Biology, Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences, University of Jember, Jl. Kalimantan 37, Kampus Tegalboto, 68121 Jember, Jawa Timur, Indonesia

3Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences, Malang State University, Jl. Semarang 5, 65145 Malang, Jawa Timur, Indonesia


Chicken feather waste contains compounds consisting of the protein called keratin and other protein.  Keratin is derived from chicken feathers and the proteins from chicken organs and blood. The degradation of chicken feather wastes require microorganisms which actively degrade especially keratin compounds, as well as other proteins and blood. This study aimed to screen and identify keratinolytic bacteria hydrolizing other proteins and blood from chicken feather wastes. The degradation of chicken feather keratin and hydrolysis of other protein were assayed by measuring the hydrolysis index of chicken feather keratin and skim milk protein, respectively. Hydrolysis of blood was tested qualitatively using blood agar. Identifying selected isolates used phenotypic and phylogenetic analysis. The strains of GB22.2 and GB23.4 revealed the highest keratinolytic and proteolytic activities, and they could hydrolyze blood. The GB22.2 isolate was most closely related to Bacillus velezensis BCRC 17467T (100% similarity). It is proposed as Bacillus velezensis GB22.2-a novel keratinolytic bacterial species. Bacillus velezensis GB22.2 is species Bacillus velezensis which is firstly reported to be able to degrade chicken feather keratin. The strain of GB23.4 was closely related to Bacillus cereus ATCC 14579T (100% similarity) and it is considered as a new keratinolytic strain of Bacillus cereus.  The isolated bacterial strains are new candidates for chicken feather degradation agent.

Keywords: Keratinolytic, Proteolysis, Chicken feather, Bacillus velezensis, Bacillus cereus

Characterization of a reactive yellow-2 decolorizing zinc tolerant bacterial strain Pseudomonas sp. LT10 isolated from textile industry wastewater

Abdul Mateen Baig1, Tauseef Sarwar2, Lubna Taj1, Yasir Bilal1, Etisam Mazhar1, Hafiz Rizwan Elahi1, Muhammad Mazhar Iqbal3, Asima Rasheed4, Zahid Maqbool1, Sabir Hussain1*

1Department of Environmental Sciences & Engineering, Government College University Faisalabad, Pakistan.

2Department of Microbiology, Government College University Faisalabad, Pakistan.

3Soil and Water Testing Laboratory for Research, Chiniot, Department of Agriculture, Government of Punjab, Pakistaan.

4Department of Bioinformatics & Biotechnology, Government College University Faisalabad, Pakistan.


The textile effluents contain the synthetic dyes, which are mostly discharged into water resources without prior treatment. These dyes are very harmful for aquatic life and microorganisms but also for human beings. These harmful effects become further severe because the metal ions are present along with the dyes. Hence, there is need to deal these pollutants simultaneously. Therefore, present study was carried out to isolate and characterize a bacterium, which showed efficient color removal of reactive yellow-2 (RY2) in occurrence of zinc (Zn). For this purpose, Zn tolerant bacterial strains were isolated and examined for efficient color removal of RY2 in occurrence of Zn. Among the isolated bacterial strains, degrading capabilities of most effective strain, Pseudomonas sp. strain LT10 were characterized under different conditions.  In existence of Zn, the strain LT10 exhibited significant decolorization of RY2 and other azo dyes. Moreover, yeast extract as a carbon co-substrate, showed efficient color removal of RY2 at pH 7.5-8.5 by the strain LT10. Moreover, the strain LT10 also revealed considerable decolorization of RY2 even at high levels of Zn. On the basis of results, it can be concluded that Pseudomonas sp. LT10 can be an efficient bioresource for treating textile wastewaters containing azo dyes and metal ions.

Keywords: Synthetic dyes, Reactive Yellow-2, Decolorization, Bacteria, Zn tolerance