Open Access Original Research Article

Assessment of Phenological Variability and Nutritional Value of the Underutilize Tropical Jackfruit Artocarpus heterophyllus’ Frost. in Nigeria

Godwin Michael Ubi, Julie Omaghomi Jemide, Maryjane Ngozi Ebri, Ubi William, Imaobong Sunday Essien

Journal of Advances in Biology & Biotechnology, Page 1-17
DOI: 10.9734/JABB/2016/23189

Aims: To assess the phenological variability that can help farmers identify Jackfruits and create awareness on the nutritional values of the underutilized tropical Jackfruit Artocarpus heterophyllus in Nigeria.

Study Design: The study was a survey and assessment of Jackfruits growing in situ in forest and home gardens where jackfruits ecotypes were identified growing wild under farmers’ field conditions.

Place and Duration of Study: The study was carried out in Cross River State, Nigeria for two seasons of 2013-2014. Collected fruit samples were analysed for mineral and nutritional compositions in the National Root Crop Research Institute laboratory Umudike, Abia State, Nigeria.

Methodology: Mature Jackfruit from Yala ecotype was carefully harvested from farmers field and taken to the National Root Crops Research Institute laboratory, Umudike Abia State for proximate (mineral and nutrient) composition analysis adopting the modified A.O.A.C methods of 2006. Data for phenological variability was obtained through measurements of leaf area (cm²), leaf length (cm), seed length (cm), 100 seed weight (kg), seed chamber length (cm), seed chamber width (cm), number of seeds per pod, stem diameter (cm), fruit width (cm), fruit weight (kg) and fruit chamber length (cm). Ecotypes location coordinates were read using GPS Etrex model. Qualitative data were taken through observations, photographs, interview of local farmers. Qualitative attributes, like  unripe fruit colour, mature fruit colour, seed shape, seed colour, seed size, pulp colour, fruit  shape and fruit skin texture were compared with the Royal horticultural colour chart. Generated data were collated and analysed using appropriate statistical tools.  

Results: The bread of the tropics fruit was found to be rich in B-complex vitamins and contains very good amounts of vitamin B – 6 (pyridoxine), niacin, riboflavin and folic acid. The result also shows that the fruit contains high starch, protein, minerals and nutrients especially, vitamins: C, E, K, potassium and sodium. Jackfruit is a good source of antioxidants vitamin C, provides about 13.7mg vitamin C which helps the body to develop resistance against infectious agents and scavenge harmful free radicals. Results of phenological variability obtained from analysis of quantitative attributes revealed some significance (p<0.05) differences among the ecotypes studied for traits such as Fruit chamber length, Fruit weight, Fruit diameter, Seed per fruit and leaf length, while phenotypic traits such as 100 seed weight, seed length, seed diameter, Leaf area and Seed chamber length did not differ (p>0.05) among the ecotypes. The fruit pod weighs between 3 – 40 kg, fruits may be oblong or globular in shape, reaching 25 – 75 cm in diameter, containing between 50 – 500 edible seeds measuring 2 – 4 cm in length and 1 – 3 cm in diameter.

Conclusion: The fruit can be used for the supplementation of food nutrients in human nutrition. In this agro-ecology, the fruit lacks market value because of ignorance and its unpopularity. Hence, this paper provides an insight into the phenological variations among the local ecotypes for which it can be easily identified, revealed the ecological relevance of Jackfruit trees and creates awareness on the nutritional values of this underutilized Jackfruit.


Open Access Original Research Article

Detection of Aflatoxins in Water, Sediment and Fishes of a Brackish Water Lake in the Nile Delta, Egypt

Amany Faried Hasballah, Hazem Taha Abd El-Hamid

Journal of Advances in Biology & Biotechnology, Page 1-6
DOI: 10.9734/JABB/2016/24298

Regular samples of water, sediments and fresh fishes of Nile tilapia were collected from Burllus Lake for detection of fungi and evaluate the levels of aflatoxins (AFs) B1, B2, G1 and G2 contamination. The mean total length (TL) and body weight (BW) of fish (n=32) were 21.65 cm and 170.35 g, respectively. AFs are one of the most potent and dangerous groups of mycotoxins worldwide. Different species of fungi were isolated from water, sediments and fishes in the present study as: Aspergillus flavus, Aspergillus niger, Aspergillus fumigatus, Aspergillus terreus, Aspergillus ocracheus, Aspergillus parasticus, Alternaria alternate, Cladosporium spp., Mucor spp., Candida spp. and Fusarium spp. AFs producing fungi including Aspergillus flavus, Aspergillus fumigatus, Aspergillus terreus, Aspergillus parasticus, Mucor spp., and Fusarium. The highest concentration of AFs was 244.526 ng/g in sediment and 1.758 ng/L in water samples, which was produced from Aspergillus flavus isolation. On the other hand, the isolate of Mucor spp. from fish samples has the ability to produce AFs with concentrations of 0.727 ng/g. High concentration of aflatoxin may affect negatively the economic value of fishes and the public A periodical examination of fishes grown in the lake is required in order to protect the public health.

Open Access Original Research Article

Quadratic Regression of Grain Protein, Oil and Starch Contents and Yields of Different Maize (Zea mays L.) Genotypes on Elevated Plant Density

A. M. M. Al-Naggar, M. M. M. Atta, M. A. Ahmed, A. S. M. Younis

Journal of Advances in Biology & Biotechnology, Page 1-17
DOI: 10.9734/JABB/2016/26692

The main objective of the present investigation was to identify the optimum plant density for the best performance of grain protein, oil and starch contents and yields of different maize genotypes via quadratic regression functions. Diallel crosses among diverse maize inbreds were evaluated in the field for grain protein (GPC), oil (GOC) and starch (GSC) contents, grain (GYPH), protein (PYPH), oil (OYPH), and starch (SYPH) yield per hectare under three plant densities, i.e.47,600, 71,400 and 95,200 plants/ha, using a split plot design with 3 replications in two growing seasons. Results combined across seasons revealed that elevated density from 47,600 to 95,200 plants/ha caused a significant reduction in GYPP, GPC and a significant increase in GYPH, PYPH, OYPH, SYPH and GOC. Regression functions revealed that for GYPH, PYPH, OYPH and SYPH, the response of the four groups of genotypes (tolerant and sensitive inbreds and hybrids) to the elevated plant density showed a quadratic response of increase in hybrids and near-linear response of increase in inbreds, but the response of increase was stronger for tolerant than sensitive groups. A quadratic response of increase was observed for GPC of sensitive hybrids, GOC of sensitive and tolerant hybrids and GSC of tolerant inbreds and hybrids. On the contrary, a quadratic response of decrease was observed for GPC of tolerant inbreds and hybrids, GOC of tolerant and sensitive inbreds, GSC of sensitive hybrids and GYPP of the four groups.


Open Access Original Research Article

Chemical Properties and Nutrient Composition of Composted Cow Dung as Affected by Duration of Composting and Bulking Plant Materials

A. F. Adekunle, C. O. Adejuyigbe, O. A. Babalola, I. O. O. Aiyelaagbe

Journal of Advances in Biology & Biotechnology, Page 1-7
DOI: 10.9734/JABB/2016/24975

A composting experiment was conducted at the Institute of Agricultural Research And Training (I.A.R&T), Moor plantation, Ibadan to evaluate the effects of duration of composting (DC) of cow dung with four plant materials on the chemical properties and nutrient composition of composts. Four cow - dung based composts were made on-farm with siam weed (Chromolaena odorantum L), Tridax (Tridax procumbens L), guinea grass (Panicum maximum L.) and maize (Zea mays L.) stover as composting plant materials (CPM) using the indore method. Composts were sampled at 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 months after composting and analysed for the pH, organic carbon, effective cation exchange capacity (ECEC), water soluble carbon (WSC), total N, available P, exchangeable cations (K, Ca, Mg and Na). Results showed significant effects of both DC and CPM on chemical properties of composts except available P. The pH, total N, organic carbon and WSC and C: N ratio of compost decreased with increasing DC. Highest levels of total N (6.7 g kg-1) were observed in compost at three months DC. Guinea grass compost (GGC) was highest in pH and WSC. Compost materials and duration of composting therefore need to be considered in formulating compost for organic fertilizers in organic farming.


Open Access Original Research Article

Efficiency of Aspergillus niger, Aspergillus flavus and Microsporum nanum to Remove Heavy Metals from Refinery Effluent

Bello Onimisi Abdulmajeed, Abubakar Bashir Yusuf, I. O. Abdullahi

Journal of Advances in Biology & Biotechnology, Page 1-6
DOI: 10.9734/JABB/2016/25751

The study was carried out to investigate the capability of some fungal species to remove heavy metals (Pb, Zn, Cr and Cd) from Kaduna Refinery and Petrochemical Company (KRPC) effluent. The three most tolerant fungi (Aspergillus niger, Aspergillus flavus and Microsporum nanum) isolated from the refinery effluent in a previous study were used for the removal of heavy metals. A seven (7) day old spore suspension of A. niger, A. flavus and M. nanum were inoculated in the medium of 250 ml Erlenmeyer’s flask containing 100 ml of effluent, enriched with 15 ml of peptone water and 1% (5 ml) of glucose as carbon source. Inoculated samples were incubated at 27 with control containing 100 ml effluent without fungi spores. All the flasks were incubated at 27  for 240 hours in a rotary shaker (150 rpm) to check fungal growth and its uptake and removal abilities. The removal level was determined using Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometer (AAS) before and after inoculation of the effluents with the three most tolerant fungal isolates (A. niger, A. flavus and M. nanum). A. niger showed removal efficiency of Cd (90.72%), followed by Zn (72.40%), Pb (67.23%) and Cr (51.25%) in that order. M. nanum removed high percentage of Cd (87.83%), followed by Pb (74.09), Zn (64.51%) and (46.99%). A. flavus showed high removal efficiency of Cd (87.63%), followed by Zn (64.63%), Pb (64.195) and Cr (49.66%). The results suggest that  A. niger, A. flavus and M. nanum indigenous to refinery effluent could be used in bioremediation works to remove heavy metals.