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Majumder S.,Charuchandra college | Mishra D.,Central Food Laboratory | Ram S.S.,UGC-DAE Consortium for Scientific Research | Jana N.K.,Charuchandra college | And 3 more authors.
Environmental Science and Pollution Research

The present study was focused on the effect of increasing urbanization including industrial and traffic activity on the accumulation of heavy metals and possible damage of selected physiological parameters (composition of assimilation pigments, membrane lipid peroxidation, and membrane integrity) of an epiphytic foliose lichen, Flavoparmelia caperata (L.) Hale. The lichen samples were collected from three different localities in and around Kolkata, India, two sites being from the urban area and one from the relatively non-polluted sub-urban area. The results showed that thalli from the urban sites have significantly higher concentrations of Fe, Cr, Cu, Zn, and Pb compared to those collected from the sub-urban site. Physiological parameters of damage also exhibited stress symptoms in thalli from the urban sites-decreased chlorophyll a indicating less photosynthetic efficiency, and increase in lipid peroxidation and electrolyte conductivity indicating cell membrane injuries. Correlation studies among metals pinpointed vehicular traffic as the main source of pollution in this area. © 2012 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg. Source

Hammami W.,Qatar University | Fiori S.,University of Sassari | Al Thani R.,Qatar University | Ali Kali N.,Central Food Laboratory | And 5 more authors.
Food Control

Fourteen spice samples were collected from local markets in Doha, Qatar, during 2012, and were surveyed for the presence of potentially harmful mycoflora and for contamination with aflatoxins B1, B2, G1, and G2 by high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). Among the tested spice samples, chili powder showed the highest presence of fungal propagules, while ginger, curry and garlic samples did not present any fungal contamination. A total of 120 isolates, mostly belonging to Aspergillus and Penicillium genera, were collected and 33 representative species were identified by amplification and sequencing of the internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region. Aspergillus flavus, Aspergillus nomius and Aspergillus niger were the most dominant. Thirty-seven Aspergillus strains were screened for their potential to produce aflatoxins using biochemical and molecular tools: only 9 A.flavus strains showed both fluorescence and amplification with all the three primers targeting aflP, aflM and aflR genes. Aflatoxins were detected in five spices (black pepper, chili, tandoori masala. turmeric and garam masala), and with the exception of garam masala, the tested samples of turmeric, black pepper, tandoori masala and chili powder exceeded B1 and/or total aflatoxin maximum levels. Our results demonstrate the potential for mycotoxin biosynthesis by fungi contaminating imported spice products. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. Source

Ahamad P.Y.A.,Indian Central Food Technological Research Institute | Ahamad P.Y.A.,Central Food Laboratory | Kunhi A.A.M.,Indian Central Food Technological Research Institute | Kunhi A.A.M.,Central Food Laboratory

Phenol is one of the major toxic pollutants in the wastes generated by a number of industries and needs to be eliminated before their discharge. Although microbial degradation is a preferred method of waste treatment for phenol removal, the general inability of the degrading strains to tolerate higher substrate concentrations has been a bottleneck. Immobilization of the microorganism in suitable matrices has been shown to circumvent this problem to some extent. In this study, cells of Pseudomonas sp. CP4, a laboratory isolate that degrades phenol, cresols, and other aromatics, were immobilized by entrapment in Ca-alginate and agar gel beads, separately and their performance in a fluidized bed bioreactor was compared. In batch runs, with an aeration rate of 1 vol -1vol -1min -1, at 30°C and pH 7.0±0.2, agar-encapsulated cells degraded up to 3000 mg l -1 of phenol as compared to 1500 mg l -1 by Ca-alginate-entrapped cells whereas free cells could tolerate only 1000 mg l -1. In a continuous process with Ca-alginate entrapped cells a degradation rate of 200 mg phenol l -1h -1 was obtained while agar-entrapped cells were far superior and could withstand and degrade up to 4000 mg phenol l -1 in the feed with a maximum degradation rate of 400 mg phenol l -1h -1. The results indicate a clear possibility of development of an efficient treatment technology for phenol containing waste waters with the agar-entrapped bacterial strain, Pseudomonas sp. CP4. © 2010 Springer Science+Business Media B.V. Source

Ramadan G.,Central Food Laboratory | Al Jabir M.,Central Food Laboratory | Alabdulmalik N.,Central Food Laboratory | Mohammed A.,Central Food Laboratory
Drug Testing and Analysis

Most countries have clearly defined regulations governing the use of pesticides in agricultural activity. The application of pesticides in agriculture usually leads to a residual amount of these pesticides on food products such as fruit and vegetables. The presence of pesticide residues on these foods destined for human consumption may pose food safety risks to consumers. To protect consumers, national authorities have established maximum limits for pesticide residues in foods. These limits can only be enforced if there are methods available to detect and monitor their concentrations in the applicable food products. To support the enforcement of this legislation, we have developed a multi-residue liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) method for the analysis of 120 pesticide residues in apples and cucumbers which has been validated and implemented in the routine monitoring and surveillance programme for these pesticides. In this method, apple and cucumber samples are extracted using the QuEChERS method (quick, easy, cheap, effective, rugged, and safe) and the extracts were analyzed directly by LC-MS/MS. The mean recoveries at three different concentrations of 0.01 µg/g, 0.05 µg/g, and 0.1 µg/g over the analytical range varied between 70 and 120%. The repeatability of the method expressed as %RSD was less than 20%. The limit of detection (LOD) of the method ranged between 0.0014 and 0.0110 µg/g for apples and between 0.0012 and 0.0075 µg/g for cucumbers. The limit of quantification (LOQ) of the method was 0.01 µg/g for apples and cucumbers. The method has been used for the analysis of over 600 apple and 550 cucumber samples over the past two years. Copyright © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. Copyright © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. Source

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