Tag Archives: 2021-1

Recent advances in molecular characterization of Sarcocystis species in some meat producing animals: an updated review

Sara Omar Swar1, Bushra Hussain Shnawa2, 3*

1College of Agricultural Engineering Sciences, Salahaddin University, Kurdistan, Iraq

2Department of Biology, Faculty of Sciences, Soran University, Kurdistan, Iraq

3Scientific Research Center, Soran University, Kurdistan, Iraq


Sarcocystosis is a parasitic disease caused by Sarcocystis species that infect humans and animals. It is prevalent in small ruminants like sheep and goats worldwide and causing pathogenic impacts that lead to economic losses owing to carcass condemnation, abortion, and death. Recently, several molecular and phylogenetic analyses have been developed to differentiate Sarcocystis species including, the 18S rRNA, 28S rRNA, 18S rDNA, and ITS-1 region. In recent years, the mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit 1 (cox-1) was successfully used for this purpose. The DNA barcoding using the cox1 gene is a reliable tool to distinguish and identify the main Sarcocystis genotypes. Therefore, several studies confirmed that the cox1 gene is a promising DNA marker for studying the genus Sarcocystis. The current review aims to highlight the molecular methods that exist for the identification of Sarcocystis species. The results showed that the Sarcocystis species of sheep and goats were genetically close related and may be considered as sibling strains, as well as the cross-infection may happen among them. Consequently, the host specificity of several Sarcocystis species is questionable. The findings additional emphasized that experimental transmission investigations within the proposed definitive host are required to confirm the characteristics and host ranges of the Sarcocystis spp. in sheep and goats. The current review represents updated knowledge about molecular discrimination of Sarcocystis species in small ruminants by reviewing and analyzing the recent articles in this aspect.

Keywords: Sarcocystis species, Small ruminants, Molecular identification, PCR

Integrated effect of urea and poultry manure on growth, yield and postharvest quality of cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.)

Noosheen Zahid1, Muhammad Jamil Ahmed1, Majid Mahmood Tahir2, Mehdi Maqbool1*Syed Zulfiqar Ali Shah1, Sundas Jamshaid Hussain1, Abdul Khaliq2, Muhammad Ishaq Asif Rehmani3

1Department of Horticulture, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Poonch Rawalakot, Azad Jammu and Kashmir, Pakistan

2Department of Soil and Environmental Sciences, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Poonch Rawalakot, Azad Jammu and Kashmir, Pakistan

3Department of Agronomy, Ghazi University, Dera Ghazi Khan, Pakistan


Application of organic manures with inorganic fertilizers is considered helpful in maintaining the crop productivity and improving soil fertility. Therefore, in this regard, current study was designed to determine the efficacy of urea and poultry manure (PM) either alone or in combination on growth, yield, and postharvest quality of cucumber cv. Summer Green in a field experiment at Rawalakot. This study comprised of six different treatments including urea (120 kg N ha-1), PM (120 kg N ha-1), urea + PM (90 + 30 kg N ha-1), urea + PM (60 + 60 kg N ha-1), urea + PM (30 + 90 kg N ha-1) and a control. It was organized according to randomized complete block design each with three replicates. Results showed that application of urea and PM either alone or in combination significantly affected cucumber growth, yield and postharvest quality. However, integration of urea with PM yielded better results as compared to other treatments. Among integrated treatments, application of urea @ 90 kg N ha-1 and PM @ 30 kg N ha-1 showed about 26% increase in plant height, 30% increase in leaf area and 32% increase in number of leaves plant-1. Similarly, fruit weight, postharvest quality and N uptake efficiency were also increased by 36%, 39% and 50%, respectively. Moreover, application of urea with PM also improved soil organic matter, total N, available P and K by 53%, 67%, 38% and 25%, respectively. Thus, the results of present study suggested that integration of urea with PM could be a feasible option for sustainable cucumber production.

Keywords: Crop yield, Inorganic fertilizer, Organic fertilizer, Quality attributes, Soil properties

Impact of abiotic factors on the foraging behavior of two honeybee species on canola in Bahawalpur, Punjab-Pakistan

Muhammad Aslam Farooqi1, Muhammad Naveed Aslam2*, Asif Sajjad1, Waseem Akram1, Aneeqa Maqsood3

1Department of Entomology, Faculty of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences, The Islamia University of Bahawalpur, Pakistan

2Department of Plant Pathology, Faculty of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences, The Islamia University of Bahawalpur, Pakistan

3Department of Entomology, Bahauddin Zakariya University, Multan, Pakistan


This study was conducted to understand the effect of abiotic factors on the foraging behavior of two native honeybee species (Apis dorsata and A. florea) andits ultimate impact on reproductive success of Brassica napus L. Foraging behavior of honeybees was studied in terms of visitation rate, visitation frequency, stay time on flower, stigma contact events, nectar robbing and pollen grain deposition on stigma. Simple linear regression model was used to find relationship between foraging behavior parameters and abiotic factors including ambient temperature, light intensity, wind speed and relative humidity. The results showed that A. dorsata had statistically higher visitation rate (54.23±1.307 flowers/300 seconds), number of stigma contact events (0.98±0.008) and pollen deposition (287.72±6.58 pollens) than A. florea i.e. 22.65±0.808 flower/300 seconds, 0.51±0.032 events and 154.83±7.83 pollens, respectively. The linear regression analysis showed that the stay time and nectar robbing of A. dorsata was not affected by any of the abiotic factors. Visitation frequency had negative relationship with all the abiotic factors. Stigma contact time decreased with the increase in temperature and increased with the increase in light intensity. In case of A. florea, stigma contact time had no relationship with any of the abiotic factor. Visitation rate and stay time were affected by light intensity. However, the value of R2 did not exceed 0.25 in all these significant relationships. Nectar robbing events increased with the increase in relative humidity and decreased with the increase in wind speed. Apis dorsata was more efficient pollinator of B. napus than A. florea in terms of seed weight per pod and germination percentage.

Keywords: Abiotic factors, Honeybees, Brassica napus, Reproductive success

Morphological and anatomical characteristics of Indonesian rice roots from East Nusa Tenggara contribute to drought tolerance

Yustina Carolina Febrianti Salsinha1, Maryani2, Didik Indradewa3, Yekti Asih Purwestri1,4Diah Rachmawati1*

1Laboratory of Plant Physiology, Department of Tropical Biology, Faculty of Biology, Universitas Gadjah Mada, Yogyakarta, Indonesia

2Laboratory of Plant Structure and Development, Department of Tropical Biology, Faculty of Biology, Universitas Gadjah Mada, Yogyakarta, Indonesia

3Department of Agronomy, Faculty of Agriculture, Universitas Gadjah Mada, Yogyakarta, Indonesia

4Research Center for Biotechnology, Universitas Gadjah Mada, Yogyakarta, Indonesia


The ability of rice plants to cope with drought is supported by several parameters, including the structure of the root organ for water absorption. This study aimed to analyze the characteristics of the root tissues that play a role in supporting local rice plants during drought. This study was conducted by comparing 18 East Nusa Tenggara (Nusa Tenggara Timur [NTT]) local rice cultivars with two comparative drought-tolerant and drought-susceptible cultivars under drought stress treatment using the fraction of transpirable soil water method with levels 1 (control) and 0.2 (severe stress). Morphological measurement of plant growth and root phenotype, including root length and root dry weight, as well as plant height, number of leaves, and number of tillers, was conducted in the vegetative phase (46 days after planting). The collected root samples were prepared for anatomical slides using the paraffin embedding method and observed microscopically. Results showed the tendency of drought-tolerant plants to exhibit low reduction of the growth characteristics. In this study, drought tolerant rice cultivars (Pak Mutin, Boawae 100 Malam, and Kisol) tend to have root anatomical structure characterized by smaller root diameter, root area, cortical radius, vascular cylinder diameter, smaller cross-sectional of the vascular cylinder, and smaller metaxylem diameter with the higher number of metaxylem cells.  In addition, thicker root epidermal cells and more schlerenchyma cell layers were also observed.

Keywords: Drought tolerance, Nusa Tenggara Timur, Local rice, Root anatomy

Coccinellidae beetles (Coleoptera) fauna of district Layyah (Punjab), Pakistan

Muhammad Adnan Bodlah1, Imran Bodlah2*, Muhammad Tariq Rasheed2, Ammara Gull e Fareen2,4Kamran Ikram1, Zafar Iqbal2, Roshan Zada3

1Fareed Biodiversity Conservation Centre, Department of Agricultural Engineering, Khwaja Fareed University of Engineering and Information Technology, Rahim Yar Khan, Punjab, Pakistan

2Insect Biodiversity and Conservation Group, Department of Entomology, Pir Mehr Ali Shah Arid Agriculture University, Rawalpindi, Pakistan

3Director Technical, Pakistan Agricultural Research Council, Islamabad, Pakistan

4Department of Environmental Sciences, Pir Mehr Ali Shah Arid Agriculture University, Rawalpindi, Pakistan


Beetles belonging to family Coccinellidae are predators of various sucking insect pests, some of them are phytophageous. A lot of work for the exploration of these beetles has been done in Pakistan. Layyah being a multi crop area was selected as study area for the exploration of Coccinellidae beetles. A survey was conducted for the collection of Coccinellidae adult specimens from the territory of Layyah district of southern Punjab, Pakistan, during 2018-19. A total 568 adult specimens were collected from seven localities. Out of which, ladybird beetles belonging to seven genera, with ten species namely; Coccinella septempunctata Linnaeus, 1758, Brumoides suturalis (Fabricius, 1798), Henosepilachna vigintioctopunctata (Fabricius, 1775, Henosepilachna elaterii (Rossi, 1794), Hippodamia variegata (Goeze, 1777), Scymnus (Pullus) quadrillum Motschulsky, 1858, Scymnus (Pullus) posticalis Sicard, 1913, Scymnus (Scymnus) nubilus Mulsant, 1850,  Micraspis allardi (Mulsant, 1866), Pharoscymnus flexibilis (Mulsant, 1853), have been recorded with their prey and host plants for the first time from the surveyed area. The coccinellids distribution is also given and map was prepared by using ArcGIS map tool. Explored predatory beetles may be used as bio-control agents in the region for the management of various sucking insect pests of various crops, fruits vegetables etc.

Keywords: Ladybird beetles, Coccinellidae, Predators, Diversity, Taxonomy, Layyah, Punjab

Using brown seaweed as a biofertilizer in the crop management industry and assessing the nutrient upliftment of crops

Galabadage Indika Pavithrani Silva Makawita1,2*, Indira Wickramasinghe2, Isuru Wijesekara2

1Faculty of Graduate Studies, University of Sri Jayewardenepura, Gangodawila, Nugegoda, Sri Lanka

2Department of Food Science & Technology, Faculty of Applied Sciences, University of Sri Jayewardenepura, Gangodawila, Nugegoda, Sri Lanka


Due to the increasing levels of the world population, the demand for agricultural products has also increased over the years. Enhancing the yield and nutrient content of food products is therefore an important aspect in the current context. Experiments were conducted at both lab-scale and field level with extractions from Sargassum sp., to assess the growth of the plant, crop production, and nutrient content of Vigna radiata. A lab-scale experiment was conducted to identify and distinguish the germination percentage and seedling vigor of Sargassum treated and non-treated seeds. This included the application of a concentration series of polysaccharides and a concentration series of crude seaweed extract. The highest germination percentage was observed at 8% polysaccharide content and 15% liquid seaweed extraction (LSE) content resulting in 14% and 8% of germination increment against the control. When increasing the polysaccharide and LSE content exceeding the above-stated values, germination rate and seedling vigor dropped. When applied as foliar applications, an increment of pods against the control showed an increment of 28%, which is the maximum increment reached the 10% LSE concentration. With the polysaccharide application, the maximum yield increment was 31% with 10% concentration. Also, the dry weight content of seeds and the number of pods per plant and seed per pod have increased considerably. Further, both polysaccharide and LSE applications have increased the micronutrient and protein content in seeds. Therefore, it is recommended to use the LSE at 15% concentration and polysaccharide at 8% concentration at the germination stage and as a foliar application to increase the yield and nutrient content of the Vigna radiata plant.

Keywords: Bio-fertilizer, Germination, Seaweeds, Sargassum sp., Vigna radiata

Predicting biogas production using kinetic model for mesophilic and thermophilic temperature regimes: a theoretical approach

Aneeq1, Tahir Iqbal1,2*, Zulfiqar Ali3, Syed Jawad Ali Shah4, Adnan Abbas5, Arslan Afzal1Muhammad Jehanzeb Masud Cheema1,2

1Faculty of Agricultural Engineering & Technology, PMAS Arid Agriculture University Rawalpindi, Pakistan

2National Center of Industrial Biotechnology, PMAS Arid Agriculture University Rawalpindi, Pakistan

3School of Chemical Engineering and Technology, Xian Jiaotong University, 710000, P.R China

4National Laboratory of Solid-State Microstructure, Material Science, & Engineering Department, Nanjing University, 210093, P.R China

5College of Engineering, Nanjing Agricultural University, P.R China


Ever since global warming, largely caused by consumption of fossil fuels, has alarmed the scientists and policy makers, biomass has been gaining acceptance and currency as a means of sustainable energy generation. Biogas generation through anaerobic digestion of biomass is a promising technique of converting carbonaceous material into methane and carbon dioxide i.e major components of biogas. This work aims at determination of methane production rate based on kinetic study while taking into consideration temperature, total solids, volatile solids, residence time, and bacterial growth. We used banana waste including stem, fruit stem, peel and leaves as waste material and applied Chen & Hashimoto kinetic model to measure the methane potential. The wet anaerobic digestion process digested the banana waste inside the bioreactor for 15 days of hydraulic retention time on mesophilic temperature regime 35-40°C and 10 days for thermophilic temperature regime 55-60°C. The methane production was 14.6 m3/day using 100 kg/day of banana waste. This showed a close accord to the already observed and published data based on total solid, volatile solid, carbon to nitrogen ratio and temperature.

Keywords: Agricultural Residue, Anaerobic Digestion, Banana Waste, Biogas, Kinetic Model

First report of morphometric identification of Spodoptera frugiperda J.E Smith (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) an invasive pest of maize in Southern Sindh, Pakistan

Zeeshan Bhatti1, Agha Mushtaque Ahmed1*, Imran Khatri1, Qurban Rattar2, Shahjahan Rajput3Mehvish Tofique1, Harrison Younas1

1Department of Entomology, Faculty of Crop Protection, Sindh Agriculture University, Tando Jam, Pakistan

2Hubei Key Laboratory of Plant Pathology, Huazhong Agricultural University, 430070 Wuhan, Hubei, P.R. China

3Department of Entomology, Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto Agricultural College (SZABAC) Dokri, Pakistan


Invasive species always pose a serious threat to agriculture and cost billions of dollars in terms of reduced production and productivity. The recent preliminary survey in a few districts of southern Sindh, Pakistan showed an apprehension of the entry of one more new invasive pest belonging to genus Spodoptera is known as Fall Armyworm (FAW), S. frugiperda (J.E. Smith) in April 2019. The identification for confirming this alien pest was made employing morphological characters. The males were dissected to study genitalia. The microscopic study revealed that male genitalia of the collected species had a single lobe of coremata which is the main identification of FAW. The wing characteristics showed that the males had dark gray and brown shaded mottled forewings with conspicuous triangular white spots at the tip of the wings. The forewings of females were less distinctly marked except few faint grayish brown markings. There were six larval instars and the best identifying feature of the FAW in mature larval stage (5th-6th instar) was a set of four large rectangular spots on the upper surface of the second last segment of body and the face of larvae with obvious mark of inverted white colored “Y” shape. In morphometric, we measured the head capsule of each larval instar ranging 0.3-2.6mm in length and the larvae about 2-33.08mm. The pupa was reddish brown in color, 14-18mm in length and about 4.5mm in width. The present study confirmed the presence of S. frugiperda which requires an immense attention to make an integrated pest management strategy against it.

Keywords: Fall armyworm, Invasive species, Male genitalia, Maize, Sindh

Fruit yield and quality of the grafted tomatoes under different drought stress conditions

Sepideh Kazemi1, Abdolrasool Zakerin2, Vahid Abdossi3*, Pezhman Moradi4

1Ph.D Student of Horticultural Science, Science and Research University of Tehran, Iran

2Assistant Professor of Islamic Azad University, Jahrom Branch, Iran

3Assistant Professor of Science and Research University of Tehran, Iran

4Assistant Professor of Department of Horticulture, College of Agriculture Science, Islamic Azad University, Saveh Branch, Iran


This study was evaluated the effect of different rootstocks, scion, and drought stress levels on yield, yield components and biochemical characteristics of four commercial tomato cultivars. In this regard, the combinations of three rootstocks (Dashtestan, Dorahe, and Mond) and four scions (Ra’ad, Matine, Super chief, and Rockstone) were investigated under three drought stress treatments, including 50, 75 and 100 % water requirement. After grafting, grafting success rate (percent) and some vegetative and reproductive parameters were measured. Considering the main effect of rootstock, the highest percentage of success in grafting unit (up to 50%) was obtained by the Dashtestan rootstock, while the lowest (40%) was obtained by the Mond rootstock. The results showed that drought stress and different rootstocks had significant effects on plant height (p<0.05), average fruit weight, flower and fruit numbers, protein and lycopene contents (p<0.01). On the other hand, there were significant interactions between drought stress, rootstock and scion in respect of average fruit weight, flower and fruit number, TSS, firmness, protein, lycopene, and superoxide dismutase(SOD). So that, in the conditions of the experiment, drought stress caused an increase in some parameters such as fruit TSS and firmness, the contents of carotenoids, flower number, protein content and activities of catalase(CAT), peroxidase, and superoxide dismutase enzymes. It could be concluded that the best combinations of rootstock and scion were Ra’ad and Super Chief scions, respectively on Dashtestan rootstock. So that, in many evaluated parameters these rootstock-scion combinations were better than others.

Keywords: Cleft grafting, Gillette razor, Rootstock, Scion, Tomato

Performance of Italian ryegrass varieties: Effect of cutting stage on dry matter and total non-structural carbohydrates percentages

Patrick N Rakau1*, Khuliso E Ravhuhali2, Mpho Nzeru1

1Agricultural Research Council, Cedara, Animal Production Institute, Forage Breeding, P.O. Box 1055, Hilton 3245, Kwazulu Natal, South Africa

2School of Agriculture Sciences, Department of Animal Science, Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences, North-West University, Private Bag X2046 Mmabatho, 2735, South Africa


Plant dry matter (DM) is one of the most limiting factors on the rumen fill. Due to variation in seasons, forages are prone to different stresses ranging from abiotic and biotic factors. The study was done to assess the effect of cutting stage on dry matter yield r and total non-structural carbohydrates of Italian ryegrass varieties (14 varieties). Diploid varieties namely: Supercharge, Sukari, Kigezi, Bartrento, ARC-148 BQX, Maximus and 14 LMD 43 and Tetraploid varieties namely: Green-Spirit, Barmulta II, ARC-214 GQX, Supreme Q, Agriton, AgriBoost and Mona. The trial was run at the Cedara research station in KwaZulu-Natal province (KZN). All 14 varieties were planted in rows which were 150mm apart (at the population rate of 30 kg/ha for both diploid and tetraploid) replicated three times in a laid out and fitted into randomized complete block design (RCBD). Dry matter yield and non-structural carbohydrates were analysed. A consistent effect of cutting stage on DM yield and TNC was not observed on average mean values. The cutting interval did not influence the DM yield and TNC concentration of both on diploid and tetraploid Lolium multiflorum varieties. The cutting stages can be reduced to four or five to allow the plant to regain its vigour after cutting /defoliation in order to and enforce the source-sink relationships.

 Keywords: Rumen fill, ruminant, dairy cattle, carbohydrates, linear regression.