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Umar Saeed Khan, Amanullah, Abdul Manan, Nasrullah Khan, Amir Mahmood and Abdur Rahim

Abstract

A simple oxidation synthesis route was developed for producing magnetite nanoparticles with controlled size and morphology. Investigation of oxidation process of the produced magnetite nanoparticles (NP) was performed after synthesis under different temperatures. The phase transformation of synthetic magnetite nanoparticles into maghemite and, henceforth, to hematite nanoparticles at different temperatures under dry oxidation has been studied. The natural magnetite particles were directly transformed to hematite particles at comparatively lower temperature, thus, maghemite phase was bypassed. The phase structures, morphologies and particle sizes of the produced magnetic nanoparticles have been investigated by X-ray diffraction (XRD), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), energy dispersive X-ray spectrometry (EDX) and BET surface area analysis.

Open access

Yasir Waheed, Umar Saeed, Sher Zaman Safi, Waqas Nasir Chaudhry and Ishtiaq Qadri

Abstract

Background: In Pakistan, most patients with Hepatitis B and C have history of facial and armpit shaving from barbers. Objective: Evaluate the awareness and risk factors associated with barbers in transmission of Hepatitis B and C. Subjects and methods: A cross sectional survey was conducted in Rawalpindi and Islamabad, the twin capital cities of Pakistan between January and July 2009. Five hundred and eight barbershops were surveyed. Results: Out of 508 barber shops, 99.8% and 98.2% were washing their razor with water and water plus antiseptic solution, respectively, while 99.8% were using new blades. Only 39.6% knew that hepatitis B virus (HBV) and hepatitis C virus (HCV) were viral diseases, 26.6% knew that it can lead to cancer, 90.7% thought that hepatitis could be transferred by blade sharing, 47.8% knew that a vaccine for HBV was available, and 43.0% had education beyond the primary level. None of the barbers used a new or washed apron/towel on every customer. Conclusion: In Pakistan, a small number of barbers are shaving clients with an old style razor with a permanent blade. There is moderate awareness about the various modes of transmission of hepatitis among the barbers, and most of them don’t know about vaccination. A predominant number of them are considering interferon treatment as a vaccine for hepatitis B and C.

Open access

Farkhanda Yasmin, Tahir Yaqub, Muhammad Idrees, Wasim Shahzad, Abu Saeed Hashmi, Kiran Aqil, Nadia Mukhtar, Muhammad Yasir Zahoor, Naeem Akhtar and Sajid Umar

Abstract

Introduction: Dengue is one of the major emerging viral diseases in the world, with dramatic increases in reported cases in the last few decades and annual worldwide occurrence of approximately 390 million infections. It is a highly important mosquito-vectored disease and is a problem in tropical and subtropical areas of the world. The major aim of this study was to clone and express the dengue NS3 gene, in service to its therapeutic importance for the development of stable cell lines.

Material and Methods: Blood samples from dengue fever (DF) patients were collected and subjected to PCR amplification of the NS3 gene of dengue virus serotype-2 (DENV-2). The NS3 gene was amplified using gene specific primers and cloned in the TA cloning vectors.

Results: The gene was successfully expressed in mammalian expression vector pcDNA3.1. The current finding was different from a previously reported DENV-2 strain replicon constructed in different cells, in which the whole genetic material of the virus was used instead of an active protease gene, and which gave a low yield of replicon expressing cells.

Conclusion: Recombinant NS3 could be used to produce an antibody that is possibly helpful for developing a single step diagnostic assay to detect the dengue virus NS3 antigen in sera of dengue patients.