• Saturated Fatty Acid Intake as a Risk Factor for Cardiovascular Disease in Healthy Caucasian Adults from Western Populations

      Thomas, Patricia; Mushtaq, Sohail; University of Chester (Cambridge University Press, 2014-02-02)
      ABSTRACT Background: Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the leading cause of premature death globally (WHO, 2010).For over 50 years saturated fatty acids (SFA) have been implicated as a main dietary risk factor for CVD. Therefore national guidelines recommend limiting SFA to <10% of total daily energy intake COMA, [1]. However, recent literature has begun to question this advice due to contra evidence showing SFA not to be a risk factor for CVD, Hoenselaar [2]. This study’s aim was to investigate the relationship between SFA and CVD to assess whether or not recommendations should be made to review national guidelines. Method: A systematic review and meta-analysis were conducted. Electronic research databases were searched using variations of the keywords “saturated fatty acids” and “cardiovascular disease”. Articles were only included if they had a randomised control trial (RCT) or prospective cohort (PC) study design. Additionally participants had to meet the following criteria: Caucasian, non-smokers, normal BMI, classed as healthy, no preexisting CVD related conditions, not taking cholesterol altering drugs and no inborn errors of lipid metabolism. Articles were also only included if they were conducted in western populations in an attempt to standardise environmental factors. In the PCs, only data which was adjusted for these factors was included. Articles were assessed for quality using the Jadad et al. [3] scoring/CASP tool and for confounding variables, risk of bias and homogeneity. Results: A total of 411 articles were identified. Eight articles were included after exclusion for duplication, study design, not meeting full inclusion criteria, low quality, confounding variables, high risk of bias and heterogeneity. Of these, 4 were RCTs and 4 were PCs including 193,409 participants (192,686 female, 723 male). RCT and PC data were analysed separately. For the RCTs, LDL-cholesterol concentration post high/low SFA intervention was used as a functional biomarker for CVD risk. For the PCs the number of CVD related events in the low/high SFA diet groups was used as the marker for CVD risk. In the RCT meta-analysis there was a standard mean difference (95%CI) of -0.94 (-1.17, - 0.71) (p<0.00001) favouring the low SFA diet to decrease the risk of CVD. In the PC metaanalysis a risk ratio (95%CI) of 1.00 (0.64, 1.58) (p=1.00) showed there to be no statistically significant relationship between SFA and CVD. Sensitivity analyses conducted predominantly showed no change in outcome. Discussion: RCT outcomes favoured a low SFA diet for lowering CVD risk whereas the PC outcome showed no relationship. Although these differed they indicate that SFA does not increase CVD risk in western Caucasian adults. However further research is needed before requesting recommendations for the review of national guidelines. These findings correlate with other systematic reviews/meta-analyses e.g. Skeaff and Miller, [4]. Conclusion: From the studies included SFA does not increase CVD risk in affluent Caucasian adults.
    • Qualitative Study of the Determinants of Food Choice of International Students and Its Associated Health Risk (P10-080-19).

      Nwaugochi, Ifeanyi; Kennedy, Lynne (2019-06-13)
      Migration to study in an industrialized country is an important time when unhealthy food choice behaviour among students reach its peak. This dietary pattern is linked to increased risk level of developing food-related chronic diseases (F-RCD). During this period, students tends to consume more ultra-processed diet (high in fat, sugar, & energy) and very low in fruits and vegetable. The main objective of this study was to explore the factors influencing food choice and dietary acculturation of international students using qualitative study design to explore their knowledge/perception on nutrition and the link between food, health and F-RCDs. Recent studies have shown dearth on determinants of food choice, dietary acculturation and its associated health challenges of international students. International students were recruited by purposive and snowball sampling through poster advert and international office of the University of Chester.Using an open-ended, semi-structured question guide, focus group interviews was carried out. Focus group data were transcribed verbatim and analysed using manual content analysis and inductive thematic approach.23 participants were recruited into the study comprising 13 undergraduate and 10 postgraduate students (12 males and 11 females) aged 18-25 years from Africa, Asian, and the Caribbean. Factors identified by most international students as being the main determining factor on their food choice includes residency status (as a full or semi-catered student), price, availability, accessibility (location of shop), preservation/storage temperature, UK weather conditions, structure of foods in the UK among others. The results presented here may facilitate the improvements of wellbeing of international students' by promoting healthy food choice, thereby encouraging positive acculturation of these students. This research was funded by the researcher.
    • "I cannot sit here and eat alone when I know a fellow Ghanaian is suffering": Perceptions of food insecurity among Ghanaian migrants.

      Osei-Kwasi, Hibbah Araba; Nicolaou, Mary; Powell, Katie; Holdsworth, Michelle (2019-05-17)
      In the UK, ethnic minority groups tend to have higher levels of poverty than the white British population and therefore may be at high risk of food insecurity. Ghanaians, living in Ghana or as migrants are thought to have a high level of social support in their communities, but the role of this resource in relation to food security is unknown. We explored participants' perceptions of social and economic factors influencing food security among Ghanaian migrants in Greater Manchester. Participants aged ≥25 years (n = 31) of Ghanaian ancestry living in Greater Manchester were interviewed using a semi-structured interview guide developed by the researchers. Participants varied in socioeconomic status (SES), gender and migration status. Interviews were transcribed verbatim and analysed thematically using a framework approach. Participants offered similar accounts of the social and economic factors influencing food security. Accounts were based on participants' perceptions and/or personal experiences of food insecurity within the community. Participants indicated that they and their fellow Ghanaians can 'manage' even when they described quite challenging food access environments. This has negative implications on their food choices in the UK. Participants reported food insecure households may be reluctant to make use of food banks for fear of 'gossip' and 'pride'. Paradoxically, this reluctance does not extend to close network. Many participants described the church and other social groups as a trusted base in which people operate; support given through these channels is more acceptable than through the 'official context'. Government assisted food banks could partner with the social groups within this community given that these are more trusted. Keywords: food insecurity; food choice; social networks; Ghanaians; healthy eating; migrants. [Abstract copyright: Copyright © 2019 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.]
    • Dietary Patterns Are Associated with Predicted 10-Year Risk of Cardiovascular Disease Among Ghanaian Populations: the Research on Obesity and Diabetes in African Migrants (RODAM) Study.

      Boateng, Daniel; Galbete, Cecilia; Nicolaou, Mary; Meeks, Karlijn; Beune, Erik; Smeeth, Liam; Osei-Kwasi, Hibbah Araba; Bahendeka, Silver; Agyei-Baffour, Peter; Mockenhaupt, Frank P.; et al. (2019-05-01)
      Sub-Saharan African populations are disproportionately affected by cardiovascular disease (CVD). Although diet is an important lifestyle factor associated with CVD, evidence on the relation between dietary patterns (DPs) and CVD risk among sub-Saharan African populations is limited. We assessed the associations of DPs with estimated 10-y atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD) risk in Ghanaian adults in Ghana and Europe. Three DPs ('mixed'; 'rice, pasta, meat, and fish'; and 'roots, tubers, and plantain') were derived by principal component analysis (PCA) based on intake frequencies obtained by a self-administered Food Propensity Questionnaire in the multi-center, cross-sectional RODAM (Research on Obesity and Diabetes among African Migrants) study. The 10-y ASCVD risk was estimated using the Pooled Cohort Equations (PCE) for 2976 subjects, aged 40-70 y; a risk score ≥7.5% was defined as 'elevated' ASCVD risk. The associations of DPs with 10-y ASCVD risk were determined using Poisson regression with robust variance. Stronger adherence to a 'mixed' DP was associated with a lower predicted 10-y ASCVD in urban and rural Ghana and a higher 10-y ASCVD in Europe. The observed associations were attenuated after adjustment for possible confounders with the exception of urban Ghana (prevalence ratio [PR] for Quintile 5 compared with 1: 0.70; 95% CI: 0.53, 0.93, P-trend = 0.013). The 'rice, pasta, meat, and fish' DP was inversely associated with 10-y ASCVD across all study sites, with the adjusted effect being significant only in urban Ghana. A 'roots, tubers, and plantain' DP was directly associated with increased 10-y ASCVD risk. Adherence to 'mixed' and 'rice, pasta, meat, and fish' DPs appears to reduce predicted 10-y ASCVD risk in adults in urban Ghana. Further investigations are needed to understand the underlying contextual-level mechanisms that influence dietary habits and to support context-specific dietary recommendations for CVD prevention among sub-Saharan African populations. [Abstract copyright: Copyright © American Society for Nutrition 2019.]
    • The low-risk perception of developing type 2 diabetes among women with a previous history of gestational diabetes: a qualitative study

      Sharma, Manisha; Purewal, Tejpal Singh; Fallows, Stephen; Kennedy, Lynne; Edge Hill University; Royal Liverpool Hospital; University of Chester (Wiley, 2019-02-12)
      We conducted a qualitative study to explore the risk perceptions, health beliefs and behaviours of women with a previous history of gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM). Women aged between 18 to 40 years (at the time of pregnancy) with a previous history of GDM, registered at The Royal Liverpool University Hospital, United Kingdom, participated in individual, semi-structured, face-to-face interviews. Qualitative data from seven participants were collected until data saturation and were analysed by thematic analysis. Participants had a low-risk perception of the future risk of developing diabetes. Some believed that their risk was the same as that of any other woman without a history of GDM, and some other participants were not aware of the risk at all and perceived GDM as a temporary health condition with no long-term risks. Participants showed some understanding of a healthy lifestyle in general. However, most of the information was self-acquired by participants and not linked to the future risk of developing diabetes. The findings of this research also indicated a contrast between the high perception of the immediate risks of complications during the pregnancy and low long-term risk of developing diabetes after pregnancy associated with GDM. Participants received healthy lifestyle advice during their pregnancy, but none of them reported involvement in any postnatal health education, intervention or counselling as recommended by 2008 and 2014 NICE guidelines. The low-risk perception impedes positive health behaviour required to overcome the barriers against a healthy lifestyle. This was a small research project but the findings warrant scope for more research in this field. A larger study might promote the development of a well-structured, long-term follow-up health intervention programme, incorporating a reminder system for annual diabetes screenings to improve the risk perception and reduce the risk for the development of type 2 diabetes in this population.
    • Vitamin D3 supplementation for 8 weeks leads to improved haematological status following the consumption of an iron-fortified breakfast cereal: a double-blind randomised controlled trial in iron-deficient women.

      Mushtaq, Sohail; Ahmed Fuzi, Salma F; University of Chester (Cambridge University Press, 2019-03-01)
      The effect of 38 µg (1500 IU) daily vitamin D3 supplementation, consumed with an iron-fortified breakfast cereal for 8 weeks, on haematological indicators in iron-deficient female subjects was investigated. Fifty iron-deficient subjects (plasma ferritin concentration < 20 µg/L; mean age ± SD: 27.4 ± 9.4 years) were randomised to consume an iron-fortified breakfast cereal containing 9 mg of iron daily, with either a vitamin D3 supplement or placebo. Blood samples were collected at baseline, interim (4 weeks) and post-intervention (8 weeks) for measurement of iron and vitamin D status biomarkers. The effect of intervention was analysed using mixed-model repeated measures ANOVA. Significant increases were observed in two main haematological indices: haemoglobin concentration and haematocrit level from baseline to post-intervention in the vitamin D group, but not in the placebo group. The increase from baseline to post-intervention in haemoglobin concentration in the vitamin D group (135 ± 11 to 138 ± 10 g/L) was significantly higher compared to the placebo group (131 ± 15 to 128 ± 13 g/L) (P=0.037). The increase in haematocrit level from baseline to post-intervention was also significantly higher in the vitamin D group (42.0 ± 3.0 to 43.8 ± 3.4%) compared to the placebo group (41.2 ± 4.3 to 40.7 ± 3.6%) (P=0.032). Despite the non-significant changes in plasma ferritin concentration, this study demonstrates that 38 µg supplemental vitamin D, consumed daily, with iron-fortified breakfast cereal led to improvement in haemoglobin concentration and haematocrit levels in women with low iron stores. These findings may have therapeutic implications in the recovery of iron status in iron-deficient populations at a healthcare level.
    • Communities and neighbourhoods

      Vaandrager, Lenneke; Kennedy, Lynne; Wageningen University and University of Chester (Springer, 2016-09-07)
      Summary There is growing consensus that the places where people live and the various social processes, relationships and psycho-social concepts associated with strong healthy communities and neighbourhoods make an important contribution to health. Where you live makes a considerable difference; people living in more affluent communities for example are more likely to experience better self-reported health and wellbeing. This is particularly evident in current theoretical and policy debates concerning the salutogenic and so-called strength or assets based approach to health; healthy communities have various social and physical resources available, which if they can recognise, share and utilise, can result in stronger SOC, increasing their ability to cope and thrive. Within health promotion we actively encourage communities to organise themselves for better health and well-being. The concept of ‘community’ is both complex and subjective and difficult to define. So we start by conceptualising the definitions, dimensions and meanings of community – beyond a physical location - underpinning this chapter. There are several ideas linking the community or neighbourhood as a setting, including community as a place to live, connectedness (social capital) and social action (the development of a strong SOC). The evidence is variable in quality and furthermore, few studies explicitly apply the theory of salutogenesis when they study health and wellbeing in the community context. The body of this chapter is devoted therefore to summarising the available research about salutogenic and asset-based community interventions, drawing upon examples from empirical work. In doing so, we will highlight debates emerging around the concepts of a salutogenic framework and health assets in relation to community and neighbourhood. As such, we are specifically interested in examining the resources (and/or assets) of communities and neighbourhoods and the associated processes enabling these resources to be accessed for the benefit of the community’s health and wellbeing.
    • A FRAP Assay at pH 7 unveils Extra Antioxidant Activity from Green, Black, White and Rooibos Tea but not Apple Tea

      Owusu-Apenten, Richard K.; Wong, C. W.; Cheung, W. S. M.; Lau, Y. Y.; Bolanos de la Torre, Angelica A. S.; University of Chester, University of Ulster (Verizona publisher, 2015-06-26)
      Abstract Aim: Realization of a ferric reducing antioxidant power (FRAP) assay at neutral pH and re-evaluation of tea antioxidant activity for comparisons with the standard FRAP assay. Method: A FRAP assay at neutral pH utilized ferrozine (7.3-(2-Pyridyl)-5, 6-diphenyl-1, 2, 4-triazine-4’, 4’’-disulfonic acid;ferrozine) dye in conjunction with Tris-HCl buffer (0.1M. pH 7.0) with 280 µl of regent addition to 20 µl of tea infusions and absorbance measurements at 562 nm with a microplate reader. Results: The microplate ferrozine FRAP assay (mFzFRAP) gave linear calibrations for ascorbic acid, gallic acid, ammonium ferrous sulphate, (AFS), trolox, cysteine and glutathione (R2 = 0.998 -1.000) with molar absorptivity (measures of sensitivity) similar to literature values. The analytical precision was 5-7% and the minimum detectable concentrations (MDC) were 1.4- 2.8 µM (0.4-0.8 nanomoles). Discussion: Values for FRAP were higher at pH 7.0 compared to pH 4.0 for gallic acid, ascorbic acid, glutathione, and cysteine possibly due to their ionization at high pH. The assay sensitivity for AFS and trolox were unchanged at pH 4.0 and pH 7.0. When assayed at pH 7 the water infusions from green tea, black tea, white tea, and rooibos tea had 200-360% antioxidant activity normally observable at low pH. Conclusion: A FRAP assay at pH 7 unveils extra antioxidant activity for green, black, white and Rooibos teas compared to values from the standard TptzFRAP (pH 3.6) method. As a recommendation, the antioxidant activity of teas and other herbal preparations should be re-evaluated over a wide pH range.
    • Socio-economic causes of undernutrition

      Kennedy, Lynne; Woodall, Alison; University of Chester (John Wiley and Sons, 2018-01-26)
      In this chapter we explore the role of socio-economic factors in the development of under-nutrition in high-income countries, such as the UK, with particular reference to food access and nutrition inequality. For the purpose of this chapter we use the term under-nutrition to refer to the physiological effects of inadequate food supply resulting from the inability to access sufficient quantity and quality of food to meet recommended nutritional requirements; a situation otherwise termed food poverty or food insecurity (See Box 1 for definitions). In affluent societies, hunger and malnutrition coexist alongside obesity and diet-related diseases such as coronary heart disease and diabetes. Before the food system was industrialised in the mid-20th Century, people ate a basic, traditional diet of limited variety. Hunger and under nutrition was common. Today, food is both varied and widely available. Access to cheap, energy-dense and nutrient-poor food is linked with the so-called obesity epidemic and diseases of affluence. Despite this a growing number of people in societies such as the UK experience hunger or malnutrition because of limited access or availability to a nutritionally adequate diet (3, 4, and 5).
    • Effects of ascorbic acid, dehydroascorbic acid and methotrexate on breast cancer cell viability.

      Dosunmu, Yewande; Owusu-Apenten, Richard K.; University of Chester, University of Ulster (Sciencedomain international, 2017-10-28)
      Aims: To examine the effects of ascorbic acid (AA), dehydroascorbic acid (DHA) and methotrexate (MTX) combined treatments on (MDA-MB-231) breast cancer cell viability and intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS). Study Design: In-vitro method. Place and Duration of Study: Biomedical Sciences Research Institute, University of Ulster, Coleraine, BT52 1SA, United Kingdom. September 2016-2017 Methodology: Cytotoxicity tests were performed with MTX (0.01- 1000 µmol/l) alone or in combination with AA or DHA, for 72 h. Cell viability was measured by 3-4,5 dimethylthiazol-2,5 diphenyl tetrazolium bromide (MTT) or Sulforhodamine B (SRB) assays. Intracellular ROS was measured by 2’,7’-dichlorofluroscein diacetate assay. Results: Treatments of MDA-MB231 cells with single agents, showed dose dependent response with 50% inhibition of cell viability (IC50) of 110.5-201.4 µmol/l (MTX), 2237-5703 µmol/l (AA) or 2474 µmol/l (DHA). Combination studies showed clear synergisms for MTX (~10 µmol/l) and DHA or AA (1100 µmol/l) but weak or no interactions at other concentrations. Three days combination treatment of DHA showed decrease of ROS, which was reversed by MTX (>10 µmol/l). Conclusions: Co-treatment of methotrexate with AA or DHA showed synergism (C1<1.0) and enhanced cytotoxicity of the anti-folate towards MDA-MB-231 breast cancer cells. Intracellular ROS decreased with AA and DHA treatment, which might be useful for reducing MTX-related oxidative stress.
    • Effect of pH on the Radical Quenching Capacity of Tea Infusions Using the ABTS•+ Assay

      Chan, Yuk Man; Cheng, Nga Kwan; Nigam, Poonam S.; Owusu-Apenten, Richard K.; University of Chester, University of Ulster (Sciencedomain International, 2016-06-22)
      Aims: The aims of this study were to assess the impact of pH on the free radical quenching activity of tea infusions using a modified 2,2'-azino-bis (3-ethylbenzothiazoline-6-sulphonic acid (ABTS) assay and three antioxidant compounds as reference. Study Design: In-vitro method. Place and Duration of Study: Faculty of Life and Health Science, School of Biomedical Sciences, Ulster University, UK. From Sept 2014 and May 2016. Methodology: Free radical quenching capacity of tea (Earl grey, black tea, Ceylon tea, & green tea) infusions were investigated using persulfate activated ABTS with acetate buffer (pH 4.5) or phosphate buffer saline (pH 7.0) as solvent. Tests were performed using 96-well microplates, 20 µl of sample and 280 µl of ABTS reagent, and calibrated using ascorbic acid, trolox or gallic acid as reference antioxidants. Results: Gallic acid free radical quenching was pH dependent and unsuitable as reference. The free radical quenching capacity of trolox and ascorbic acid was not significantly different at pH 4.5 and pH 7.0. The radical quenching capacity of tea infusions expressed as Trolox Equivalent Antioxidant Capacity (TEAC) or Ascorbic Acid Equivalent Antioxidant Capacity (AAEAC) was greater by 50-300% at pH 7 compared to pH 4.5. Conclusion: The modified ABTS assay is suitable for examining the influence of pH on free radical quenching ability of tea samples. Gallic acid was not a suitable reference compound. The radical quenching capacity of tea infusions increases with rising pH.
    • Enhanced growth-inhibitory effect of microemulsified curcumin formulation in human prostate cancer LNCaP Cells

      Dubey, Vaibhav; Owusu-Apenten, Richard K.; University of Chester, University of Ulster (Sciencedomain international, 2015-01-01)
      Aim: To assess the effect of curcumin microemulsified with non-ionic surfactant surfynol 465 W or dispersed using edible oils on prostate LNCaP cancer cell viability and glutathione status. Methodology: LNCaP cells were treated for 72-144 hr with curcumin dissolved with fish or corn oil and microemulsified using non-ionic surfactant surfynol 465 W; alternatively LNCaP cells were treated with curcumin directly dispersed in fish or corn oil (0-50 μM) for 24 -72-144 hr. Cell viability was determined using resazurin (Vision blueTM) fluorescence assay. Glutathione status was determined by monochlorobimane (MCB) assay. Results: Treatment with 0-34 μM of microemulsified curcumin produced moderate cytotoxic effect on LNCaP cells, no 50% reduction of cell viability was observed graphically. However, when LNCaP cells were treated with curcumin dispersed with corn oil the concentration or 50% reduction of cell viability (IC50) was 12-45 μM. Similarly for cells treated with curcumin dispersed with fish oil, the IC50 was between 20-40 μM. Cytotoxic doses of curcumin dispersed with corn or fish oil increased GST status in cells by 272-656% (p =<0.01). Conclusion: Microemulsified curcumin formulation prepared using fish or corn oil and surfynol 465 W surfactant had an inhibitory effect on viability of LNCaP cells as did direct dispersion of curcumin in fish or corn oil coupled with the ability for inducing intracellular GST status in LNCaP cells.
    • Antioxidant, Anticancer and Antibacterial Activity of Withania somnifera Aqueous Root Extract

      Barnes, D. A.; Barlow, R.; Nigam, Poonam S.; Owusu-Apenten, Richard K.; University of Chester, University of Ulster (Sciencedomain international, 2015-11-10)
      Aims: To evaluate total antioxidant capacity, anticancer activity and antibacterial effects Withania somnifera aqueous-root extracts. Study Design: In vitro study. Place of Study: School of Biomedical Sciences, Ulster University, UK. Methodology: Total antioxidant capacity (TAC) of whole powder and freeze dried W. somnifera aqueous-root extracts was determined using FRAP, DPPH, Folin and ABTS assays. Anticancer activity was accessed using MDA-MB-231 breast cells and Sulforhodamine B staining for cell viability. Antibacterial activity was by disk diffusion assay with penicillin, amoxicillin and streptomycin as positive controls. Results: The TAC for W. somnifera extract was 86, 47, 195,or 443 gallic acid equivalents per 100g dry basis (mgGAE/ 100 g) using FRAP, DPPH, Folin or ABTS assays, respectively. Corresponding TAC values for freeze dried W. somnifera aqueous-root extract were, 418, 553, 1898 or, 1770 (mgGAE/100 g). W. somnifera aqueous-root extract inhibited MDA-MB-231 cell proliferation in a dose-dependent manner with IC50 = 0.19 mg/ml (21 µM GAE). Nil antibacterial effects were detected for freeze dried W. somnifera extract (0-1 mg/ml) across six species of bacteria tested. Conclusion: Withania somnifera root water extract showed significant antioxidant and anticancer activity for MDA-MB-231 breast cancer cells but no antibacterial activity under the conditions of this study.
    • Antioxidant, Anticancer and Antimicrobial, Effects of Rubia cordifolia Aqueous Root Extract

      Barlow, R.; Barnes, D. A.; Campbell, Anna M.; Nigam, Poonam S.; Owusu-Apenten, Richard K.; University of Chester, University of Ulster (Sciencedomain international, 2015-11-10)
      Aims: To evaluate the total antioxidant capacity (TAC) of Rubia cordifolia root extracts, to test anticancer activity against MDA-MB-231 breast cancer cell lines, and to evaluate antimicrobial activity of the same extract versus six Gram-positive and negative bacteria. Study Design: In vitro. Place of Study and Duration: School of Biomedical Sciences, Ulster University, July 2014-Sept 2015. Methodology: TAC was tested using ABTS, DPPH, FRAP and Folin assays and values were expressed as mg-gallic acid equivalents per 100 g (GAE/100 g) of sample. Anticancer properties were examined against MDA-MB-231 breast cancer cell lines using Sulforhodamine B assay. Antimicrobial activity was examined using a disk diffusion assay with three Gram-positive (Staphylococcus epidermidis, Staphylococcus aureus and Bacillus cereus) and three Gram-negative (Escherichia coli, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Salmonella typhi) bacteria. Results: TAC of dry extracts of Rubia cordifolia ranged from 523±43 to 4513±208 (mg GAE mg/100 g) depending on the method of analysis, ABTS> FRAP> Folin > DPPH methods. R. cordifolia dry extract showed cytotoxicity against MDA-MB-231 with IC50 = 44 µg/ml or 5.1µM GAE. No antimicrobial activity was observed against the three Gram-positive, or three Gram-negative bacterial species using the water extract or R. cordifolia. Conclusion: R. cordifolia aqueous extract possess high total antioxidant capacity but values depend on the method of analysis. R. cordifolia extract inhibits MDA-MB-231 breast cancer cells proliferation but nil anti-bacterial activity was observed for three Gram-positive and three Gram-negative bacterial strains tested.
    • Rapid Colorimetric Determination of Methylglyoxal Equivalents for Manuka Honey

      Kwok, T. H.; Kirkpatrick, G.; Yusof, H. I. Mohd; Portokalakis, I; Nigam, Poonam S.; Owusu-Apenten, Richard K.; University of Chester, University of Ulster (Sciencedomain international, 2016-06-14)
      Aims: Realization of a rapid colorimetric assay for monitoring levels of methylglyoxal and other dicarbonyl compounds from Manuka honey. Methods: N-acetyl cysteine (NAC) and 2, 4-dinitrophenylhydrazine (DNPH) were adopted as reagents for methylglyoxal colorimetric analysis of honey at 288 or 525 nm, respectively. Results and Discussion: NAC and DNPH produced linear responses for methylglyoxal with:(i) regression coefficient (R2) equal to 0.99 or 0.97, (ii) molar absorptivity (measure of sensitivity) equal to 287±11 or 14189±498 M-1 cm-1, (iii) a minimum detectable concentration (MDC) of 0.18 mM vs 7.3 µM, (iv) upper linearity limit of linearity (ULL) equal to 4mM or 83 µM, and (v) a day-to-day precision of 16.0 and 18.3%, respectively. Low interferences occurred with reducing sugars, glyoxal or 3-deoxy-D-glucosone. For honey with a unique manuka factor (UMF) rating 5+ to UMF18+, the net concentration of dicarbonyl compounds ranged from 1069 mg-methylglyoxal equivalence per kg (mg MeGEq /kg) to 2208 (mg MeGEq /kg) using the NAC assay. For the DNPH assay, the apparent dicarbonyl concentration was 350 to 1009-mg MeGEq /kg honey. Measures of methylglyoxal equivalences were strongly correlated with the UMF rating for honeys (R2=0.98-0.99). Conclusion: The proposed colorimetric analysis of methylglyoxal equivalence in Manuka honey is feasible proposition. Further work is needed for method validation.
    • Antibacterial activity of Manuka honey and its components: An overview

      Johnston, Matthew; McBride, Michael; Dahiya, Divakar; Owusu-Apenten, Richard K.; Nigam, Poonam S.; University of Chester, University of Ulster (AIMS Press, 2018-11-27)
      The importance of honey for medicinal purposes is well documented in some of the world’s oldest literature. Honey is well known and studied for its antimicrobial properties. The medicinal properties in honey originate from the floral source used by bees. Manuka honey is a dark monofloral honey rich in phenolic content, and currently it is gaining much attention for its antimicrobial activity. Researchers have found that honey is effective against a wide range of pathogens. The antibacterial potency of Manuka honey was found to be related to the Unique Manuka Factor (UMF) rating, which is correlated with the methylglyoxal and total phenols content. It is reported that different types of Manuka honey have differing effects and Gram-negative bacteria are more resistant than Gram-positive bacteria. Bacterial resistance to honey as antimicrobial agent has yet to be identified, possibly due to the presence of a complex mixture of methylglyoxal and other components. Honey is also reported to alter a bacterium’s shape and size through septal ring alteration, which affects cell morphology and growth. Research has shown that Manuka honey of different UMF values has medicinal properties of interest and it can be beneficial when used as a combination treatment with other antimicrobial agents
    • Curcumin restores glutathione-S-transferase activity for LNCaP prostate cancer cells

      Owusu-Apenten, Richard K.; Dubey, Vaibhav; University of Chester; University of Ulster (Hikari, 2014-02-01)
      Prostate cancer is a leading cause of death in males aged fifty and over. Glutathione transferase (GST) activity is depressed in prostate cancer cells. The aim of this study was to assess GST reactivation in LNCaP prostate cancer cells treated with curcumin or 5-azacitidine (5-Aza) which is a known hypomethylation agent. GST activity was determined using monochlorobimane (MCB). Cell viability was assessed with resazurin (Vision blue TM) or 3-(4, 5-Dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2, 5-di-phenyltetrazolium-bromide (MTT). From the results, treatment with >5 μM of curcumin or 5-Aza for 3 or 6 days depressed LNCaP cell viability. The concentrations of curcumin leading to 50% reduction of LNCaP cell viability (IC50) was 10-25 μM or 2-3 μM for 3 days or 6 days of treatment, respectively. The IC50 with 5-Aza was 17-23 μM (3 days) or 50-52 μM (6 days). Combination treatment using curcumin and 5-Aza showed complimentary interactions affecting cell viability. Low levels of curcumin or 5-Aza had no effect on GST activity. By contrast, cytotoxic doses of curcumin or 5-Aza increased GST activity by 450-750 % (3days) or 161-2800 % (6days). In conclusion, GST reactivation was feasible but only when LNCaP prostate cancer cells were treated with cytotoxic doses of curcumin or 5-azacytidne.
    • Effect of Methotrexate and Tea Polyphenols on the Viability and Oxidative Stress in MDA-MB-231 Breast Cancer Cells

      Owusu-Apenten, Richard K.; Kelly, Theresa; University of Ulster (SCIENCEDOMAIN International, 2015-03-24)
      Aim: To determine the effect of tea polyphenols and methotrexate on viability and reactive oxygen species (ROS) in a naturally resistant breast cancer cell line MDA-MB-231. Methodology: MDA-MB-231 cells were selected as a model for methotrexate resistant breast cancer. Drug tests were performed over 72 hours at concentrations 0-100 µM. Pre-treatments were with quercetin (QE) or epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) for 5 hours followed by methotrexate. Cytotoxicity was measured using the MTT assay or resazurin fluorescence assay. ROS was determined using the 2’, 7’-dichlorofluorescein diacetate assay. Intracellular GSH was measured using the monochlorobimane assay. Results: Methotrexate was cytotoxic to MDA-MB-231 cells with IC50 of 35±4 µM. The IC50 value was 68±9.4 µM with QE and 83±16 µM for EGCG. The pre-treatment with QE and EGCG lowered the IC50 for methotrexate by 28% (P =0.009) and 16% (P=0.2027). Intracellular ROS concentrations increased after treatment with methotrexate, QE or EGCG singly and ROS decreased with combination treatment compared with the response for methotrexate only. There were no significant changes in intracellular GSH. Conclusion: Pretreatment with tea polyphenols partially sensitized breast cancer cells towards methotrexate and decreases intracellular ROS. More research is needed to optimize the sensitizing effect of tea phenols on the breast cancer cell response to methotrexate.
    • Determination of Iron (III) Reducing Antioxidant Capacity for Manuka Honey and Comparison with ABTS and Other Methods

      Yusof, Hasif I. M.; Owusu-Apenten, Richard K.; Nigam, Poonam S.; Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia Medical Centre; Ulster University; University of Chester (SCIENCEDOMAIN International, 2018-06-11)
      Aims: Applying multiple assays with trolox as the sole reference compound is a recent AOAC proposal to improve the reliability of total antioxidant capacity determinations. The aim of this study was to evaluate, iron (III) reducing antioxidant capacity (iRAC) for Manuka honey samples and comparisons with ABTS and other well-known assays. Study Design: In-vitro, laboratory-based study. Place and Duration of Study: School of Biomedical Sciences, Faculty of Life and Health Sciences, Ulster University, Cromore Road, Coleraine, BT52 1SA, UK; September 2015-May 2016. Methodology: Manuka honey rated Unique Manuka Factor (UMF) 5+, 10+, 15+, 18+ and a nonrated (NR) sample were analysed using five assays for total antioxidant capacity namely, iRAC, ABTS, DPPH, FRAP, and Folin assays. Values for total antioxidant capacity were normalized as Trolox Equivalent Antioxidant capacity (TEAC) for comparison within and between assays. Results: The TAC were correlated for all methods (R2 = 0.83-0.99) and also correlated with the total phenols content. Actual TEAC value for a given honey ranged by 21-70-fold depending on the assay method with the following general order of increase; DPPH < FRAP (pH 3.6) < iRAC (pH 7.0) <ABTS (pH7) < Folin (pH ~11). The trends in TAC values are discussed alongside of TEAC values for 50 food items and some challenges for comparing different antioxidant methods are highlighted. Conclusion: Total antioxidant capacity of Manuka honey changes in a regular manner probably affected by assay pH. The findings are important for attempts to standardize antioxidant methods as currently applied to foods, beverages and dietary supplements. Further research is recommended to examine the effect of normalizing antioxidant methods for solvent composition and pH.
    • Chester treadmill police tests as alternatives to 15-m shuttle running

      Morris, Mike; Deery, Elizabeth; Sykes, Kevin; Department of Clinical Sciences & Nutrition, University of Chester, Parkgate Road, Chester CH1 4BJ, UK (Oxford University Press, 2019-04-13)
      Background Police officers require a specific level of aerobic fitness to allow them to complete personal safety training and specialist roles. Officers’ aerobic fitness is assessed using the 15-m multi-stage fitness test (MSFT); however, due to the agility required and risk of injury, two alternative treadmill tests have been designed to predict four of the key minimum VO2 criteria of 35, 41, 46 and 51 ml·kg−1·min−1. Aims To investigate the validity and reliability of Chester Treadmill Police Walk Test (CTPWT) and Chester Treadmill Police Run Test (CTPRT). Methods Seventy-eight UK police officers (18 females) completed the CTPWT (n = 53) or CTPRT (n = 35), or both, generating a total of 88 data sets. To assess reliability, 43 participants returned for a second visit (T2), to repeat the treadmill test. Results Mean differences between predicted and actual VO2 at 35, 41, 46 and 51 ml·kg−1·min−1 were as follows −1.1, −2.1, −0.1 and −1.2 ml·kg−1·min−1. Despite a significant under prediction (p = 0.001), a minimum of 92% of participants were within 10% of target VO2 at all levels. There was no significant difference between actual and predicted VO2 in the CTPRT, at 46 ml·kg−1·min−1 (T1 46.0 ± 1.4 or T2 45.1 ± 1.3 ml·kg−1·min−1). Similarly, there was no significant difference at 51 ml·kg−1·min−1 (T2 50.5 ± 1.4 ml·kg−1·min−1). We observed no differences for gender or trial. Ninety-five per cent limits of agreement were at worst T1–T2 −0.25 ± 4.0 ml·kg−1·min−1. Conclusions The CTPWT and the CTPRT provide a valid and reliable alternative to the 15-m MSFT. Key words Exercise testing; fitness; fitness standards; occupational; police; predictive; treadmill test.