Epilepsy: Debunking Traditional Belief

18 July 2021

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Abdulhamid Al-Gazali

The term ‘epilepsy’ is derived from the Greek word ‘epilambanein’, meaning ‘to seize or attack’. It is a chronic non-communicable neurological disorder that can be inherited or acquired. The belief that epilepsy is a contagious disease or spiritual attack is not scientifically accurate.

A Call For Proper Monitoring and Regulation Of Smoked and Roasted Foods

18 July 2021

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Abdulrahman Olagunju

Food smoking belongs to one of the oldest technologies of food preservation which mankind has used in meat and fish processing. Although it is a common source of protein in most diets, smoking not only gives them unique taste, texture and aroma, it also improves preservation due to its dehydrating and bactericidal properties. However, smoking has serious unintended effects that are potential health hazards. "Smoked foods may be contaminated by cancer-causing components of wood smoke – mainly polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and other derivatives of PAHs, which break down in human bodies to more toxic and dangerous PAHs," says Dr Temilola Oluseyi, a Senior Lecturer and Group Leader of Analytical and Environmental Chemistry Research Group, Department of Chemistry, University of Lagos, Nigeria.

Colours of a 'Brain and Science Sensitization Outreach' in Nigeria

16 July 2021

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Abdulsalam Mahmud FASLN

The programme was aimed at inspiring and motivating students (especially girls) of Nigerian secondary schools and Universities towards developing genuine interests and taking up career paths in life science and science courses generally.

Why is Africa's Neuroscience Research Capacity Low?

2 July 2021

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Dr. Ezekiel Akinkunmi FASLN, and Abdulsalam Mahmud FASLN

Even though early progress in neuroscience began in 'ancient' Egypt, Africa’s research capacity in this area has not kept pace with the developments in the field. The above was the assertion of a team of neuroscientists, who recently conducted a long-term analysis of research outputs in the field of neuroscience, in the continent.

Revisiting COVID-19 and Chemicals for Making Hand Antiseptics

23 May 2021

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Ezekiel O. Akinkunmi and Abdulsalam Mahmud

The advent of COVID-19 has awakened the culture of using hand sanitizers in Nigeria. As a result, the public domain is saturated with different kinds of hand-hygiene products. These are preparations designed for the purpose of reducing or eliminating germs in the hands, and thus preventing the transmission of agents of infectious diseases through the hands. The two main categories of hand-hygiene products recommended by the World Health Organization are soaps and products containing chemical antimicrobial agents.

Moving against foreign textbooks in Nigerian Universities

5 May 2021

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ABDULSALAM Mahmud

Academic Publishing Centre (APC) was built last year by the Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFund) for the Federal University of Technology, Minna (FUTMinna), in Niger State, North Central Nigeria. The APC was established to address the dearth of indigenously-authored and locally-produced tertiary level textbooks, together with other related academic publications in Nigeria’s tertiary education institutions. It is one way of motivating students to read and to foster sustainability in book development. While it is true that foreign books are helpful, the development of an indigenous book industry is needed to provide opportunities for the nation’s writers, thinkers and artists. However, Ngozi Nnam, a Professor of Community and Public Health Nutrition, said “If you diversify, you will get better information. If you get your information from books published locally, you will be abreast on what is happening in Nigeria, but one should not limit him or herself to only the Nigerian context. Look beyond Nigeria, across Africa and the world. This will make one have a global presentation of what he or she is researching on.”

2nd Life Sciences competition for universities, secondary schools, holds March 29 – April 30 in Nigeria

27 March 2021

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Abdullahi Tsanni

The second edition of the National Life Sciences Competition (NLSC) for tertiary institutions and secondary schools in Nigeria dedicated to inspiring more young people to pursue science careers is scheduled for March 29 to July 4

How the brain controls malaria pain

16 February 2021

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Abdulsalam Mahmud

Though, malaria is 'deadly' and have claimed millions of lives, especially in Africa, it is the brain that controls both the pain and fever aspects of the disease in human beings, a research lecturer at the University of Ilorin (UNILORIN), in Kwara State, Dr. Aboyeji Lukuman Oyewole, has said.

Moringa Oleifera - The Miracle Tree

14 February 2021

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Dr Moses B. Ekong

Most vitamins, such as A, B, C, D and E are present in Moringa. These vitamins are important in many body processes, including protection of cells of the body, digestion of food, good eye sight and strong bones and teeth. Their deficiency results in so many different disease conditions. The leaves of Moringa contain ten times more vitamin A than carrots and seven times more vitamin C than oranges.

Mental health in a changing world: The Students, Government and Universities

4 February 2021

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Abdul Rahman Olagunju

Studies have shown that pressure, competition and stress experienced by students puts them at high risk for mental health issues. However, precise estimates of the prevalence of anxiety and depression in this population remain elusive. Nevertheless, students need and deserve thoughtful, evidence-based support in order to address mental health issues on their campuses with urgency and focus.

Energy and Environment ― Municipal Solid Waste The Fuel Of The Future?

4 February 2021

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Haruna Adamu, PhD

In recent time, the need for increased energy demand has heightened a very enticing discussion on an energy technology that involves transforming municipal solid waste to energy. Municipal solid waste (MSW) can be used as an energy source in the same way as carbon-containing energy source materials. Some futurists believe that the world will eventually have a waste-based economy. However, this has thrown repeated question that mostly goes around and getting much of the attention these days― could MSW be the fuel of the future?

The MSW can release a substantial quantity of energy that can be harnessed to drive socio-economic ventures to fruition. For example, an overflowing waste that would otherwise throw to dumpsites could produce electricity. This doesn't just make electricity, but can also make money for the people that can venture into the business given the total global waste-to-energy market projection revenues of $45 billion (equivalent to 20 trillion and 250 billion Naira) over the next six years.

How is Nigeria's Biomedical Science Community Performing on a Global Scale

21 January 2021

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Mohammed Auwal Ibrahim, PhD

With the current annual average of around 1,200 scientific publications by the University of Ibadan, it will require about 325 years to reach Harvard Medical School, while 100, 109 and 131 years will be needed to meet up with University of Tokyo, University of Melborne, and University of Sao Paolo, respectively, if these universities are to (theoretically) stop scientific publications now.

Wrong use of malaria drug may trigger ulcer

20 January 2021

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Kazeem Ajeigbe & Charles Agwam

Misuse of malaria drugs can lead to stomach health problems

Health implications of the consumption of repeated and overheated cooking oils

16 January 2021

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Abdulrahman Olagunju FASLN & Micheal Chukwudi FASLN

Studies have shown that continuous heating and reheating of oil aids its transformation into trans fats, which not only raises the bad cholesterol - low density lipoprotein (LDL) - levels in the body, but also lowers the good cholesterol - high density lipoprotein (HDL) levels. "The chemical changes that take place in reheating of cooking oils will increase the percentage of trans fats - a form of fat which is harmful to the body- thereby leading to an increase in the bad cholesterol profile known as low density lipoprotein (LDL)," The cholesterol usually formed from this fat travel to different parts of the body system through the blood, alongside the transportation of vitamins and minerals. However, once there's an increase in the bad cholesterol (LDL), it builds up on the walls of the blood vessels, thereby forming what is known as plaque,which overtime narrows the blood vessels leading to different health risks especially, heart related diseases.

Scientist Works on Solution to Reduce Pre-Harvest Losses for Beans Farmers In Nigeria’s North East

16 January 2021

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Femi Bolaji

In Nigeria’s North East where Beans are mostly cultivated, farmers have identified Cowpea Witchweed as a major cause of their pre-harvest losses. The pest, which is referred to as ‘WutaWuta’ (Fire-Fire) in their local Hausa language was drawn from the ravaging effect of the pest on its host (beans seedling). Recurrent losses over the years have discouraged many farmers in this region from cultivating the legume, while others who manage to farm sell their harvest at exorbitant prices to recoup losses.

Bovine Tuberculosis in Nigeria

15 January 2021

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Samuel Oyejola and Zarah Yusuf

Tuberculosis for a long time is a public health challenge in Nigeria. It is one communicable disease that has claimed lives and has continued to claim lives among humans. However for animals, there are revelations that bovine TB, a form of Tuberculosis found in cattle is becoming epidemic in the country among humans. This challenge pose not a little set back to the combined effort of the government and development partners to eradicate the disease in the country by 2030.

Combatting The Challenge Of Consuming Beef With Antimicrobial Residue

15 January 2021

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Samuel Oyejola and Zarah Yusuf

How dangerous are beef consumed in Nigeria? Researchers and veterinary experts in the country are at parallel decisions on this matter. According to study, about 1.3 million cattle are slaughtered for consumption in the country with majority of it coming from abattoirs and butchers houses across the country. For researchers and veterinary experts, the bone of contention is the danger pose by the antimicrobial residue in beef due to antibiotics and other drugs administered to cattle before taken to slaughter houses.

Q Fever: Silencing The Silent Killer

15 January 2021

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Samuel Oyejola FASLN and Dr Zarah Yusuf FASLN

The cause of the increased miscarriages is therefore not farfetched. This could result from Q Fever. Also called query fever, Q Fever is a bacterial infection caused by the bacteria Coxiella burnetii most commonly found in cattle, sheep, and goats around the world. “Q Fever is a factor that can lead to miscarriages, especially when bacteria in an environment contaminated with secreta and excreta of infected animals are aerosolized. It can also be contacted by humans when there is any direct contact with infected animal,” Dr. Felicia Agbo explained.

The poultry waste dumpsites of Idi Ayunre and environs: Reservoirs and distributors of disease-causing antibiotic resistant pathogens

13 January 2021

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Sunday Omeike, PhD

Poultry business is a major contributor to Nigeria’s economy and source of meats and eggs for domestic and commercial purposes. A 2018 FAO report estimated over 180 million birds mostly in semi-intensive and intensive farms, and Netherlands Enterprise Agency’s recent report says they contribute approximately 25% to Nigeria’s agricultural GDP. This increasing economic importance of poultry farms, which could be said to be partially fuelled by antibiotic usage for health and weight gain, also leads to concomitant increase in poultry waste (litter) generated and disposed of into the environment. While antibiotic usage cannot be quantified without hard evidence, its effect can be tracked in poultry litter, as evident in Idi Ayunre town and its several adjoining communities.

Covid-19: How relaxing ban on gatherings might have triggered second wave in Bauchi and other states

11 January 2021

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Charles Agwam

In 2016, Rainey et al., conducted a systematic literature review about mass gathering-related respiratory disease outbreaks occurring in the United States from 2005 to 2014 and found outbreaks of infectious diseases following 72 mass gathering events. In another study by Shi et al., 2010, using a computer model, it was suggested that mass gatherings can increase the peak of a pandemic by 10%. In other words, we are likely to have 10% more cases with mass gatherings than without. A survey across some Bauchi towns showed that, except for few people who still wear their nose mask, many have dropped all Covid-19 protocols that were earlier enforced like hand washing, social distancing and other safety precautions.