ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202106.0456.v1
Subject: Environmental And Earth Sciences, Atmospheric Science And Meteorology Keywords: Rainfall; Temperature; oil palm; Malaysia
Online: 17 June 2021 (10:17:15 CEST)
Abstract: The effect of some weather parameters (rainfall and temperature) on the production of oil palm in Peninsular Malaysia was investigated. Data were analysed using the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS 20.0 version), with descriptive statistics, time series analysis, and multiple linear regression (MLR) carried out. SPSS and Microsoft Excel 2010 were used to analyse the results. The MLR model determined the strength of the relationship between oil palm yield (dependent variable) and the changing variables of temperature and rainfall (independent variables). The regression output returned three components; regression coefficients, regression statistics and ANOVA. The findings of the study revealed medium to high rainfall variability at the rate of 0.0008. This implies that rainfall is increasing over time with variations in its amount and intensity. As rainfall increases oil palm FFB production is predicted to increase at a slow rate of 0.0009. The estimation of average annual temperature indicated an increase of 5.6℃ at the rate of 0.0357℃ per year with a temperature maximum of 32.01℃ and minimum of 25.45℃. The result also revealed an increase in oil palm yield at the rate of 0.2581 per year with a mean value of 176247.6. Overall, there is a significant difference in the impact of rainfall and temperature on oil palm yield. This signifies that rainfall has a significant impact on oil palm yield (FFB) compared to temperature.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201710.0138.v1
Subject: Arts And Humanities, Religious Studies Keywords: preservation; environment; quran; issues; Malaysia
Online: 20 October 2017 (10:11:16 CEST)
Currently, various issues on environment have been discussed, whether the importance, destruction or ways to prevent the destruction of the environment. This paper will explore the issue from the conventional viewpoint as well as from the Islamic perspective. Destruction of the environment in recent times has worsened due to the uncontrolled exploitation of natural resources by human beings in order to generate profits. In view of the increasing technological development in Malaysia presently, this matter should not have occurred because the citizens intellectual abilities can be considered advanced. In other words, these people should be able to weigh between positive and negative consequences of voraciously exploiting natural resources. However, the greed that engulfs some of these people has obscured their view from grasping the future consequences of their acts. Based on the Islamic perspective in which the Quran is the ultimate reference, destruction of the environment can actually be prevented if every individual is aware of his or her trustworthiness or responsibility as His caliphate in this universe. Nevertheless, is there any specific verse in the Quran which explains about preservation of the environment? Can lessons from the Quran provide solutions to the environmental crises in Malaysia? This study provides explanations to the questions based on literature surveys and content analyses. By interpreting some selected verses that relate to preservation of the environment, findings from the discussions have identified that the Quranic verses are valuable resources for the sustainability of the environment.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201908.0089.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Education Keywords: classroom design; higher education; Malaysia; undergraduate
Online: 7 August 2019 (05:56:20 CEST)
The design, facilities and conditions inside a classroom play a significant role in the teaching and learning experience for both students and lecturers. Prior studies of primary schoolchildren indicate three design principles affecting student learning, namely: naturalness, individualisation and stimulation. The current study extends these investigations to Higher Education through a survey of undergraduate students and university lecturers aimed at determining the most critical factors in undergraduate classroom design. One-to-one interviews were conducted with students and lecturers (n. 31) at the University of Nottingham, Malaysia Campus. Interviewees were encouraged to express their opinions, comments, concerns and suggestions through open-ended questions. The interviews were recorded and then transcribed and coded using NVivo10. Results show a strong desire among lecturers and students for improved classroom equipment, greater flexibility in classroom arrangement, more attractive decoration and for the addition of natural elements to the classroom environment. Of the three design principles, individualisation and naturalness emerged most strongly from the interviews and appear to be more important factors for undergraduates than stimulation. These findings could make a novel and significant contribution to the physical aspects of classroom design in Higher Education settings. Educational institutions are increasingly employing non-traditional classroom designs, which are expected to provide for more flexible, collaborative, and active learning and teaching experiences. Taking into consideration the environmental psychology of teaching and learning, several of the reported design attributes can serve as benchmarks for upgrading current classroom design and facilities in the future, as institutions look to upgrade their physical infrastructures to meet the changing demands of teachers and learners arising from technological innovations and shifts in our understanding of the methods and purposes of Higher Education.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202306.0903.v1
Subject: Chemistry And Materials Science, Analytical Chemistry Keywords: Rapid; beta-carotene; UHPLC; human sera; Malaysia
Online: 13 June 2023 (08:41:31 CEST)
Beta-carotene is a fat-soluble antioxidant commonly found in foods such as fruits, vegetables, and palm oil. Despite various liquid chromatography methods are proposed to detect and measure the sera carotenoid level, a long retention time to elute this marker is needed. This study attempted to develop a rapid reverse phase method in eluding beta-carotene in human sera. The researchers managed to elute the antioxidant in 2.2 minutes by applying a combination of a C8 column, mobile phase comprising of acetonitrile mixed with methanol in 70:30 proportion, and an ultra-high performance liquid chromatography system. The outputs had a good calibration curve (R2=0.959) and low coefficient of variation (0.2%), suggesting this protocol is reliable. A column with a lower carbon chain such as C8 allows the beta-carotene molecule to flow through the column faster. Besides, selecting solvents with high elution strength coupled with an ultra-high performance liquid chromatography system which equipped with high pressure can force the beta-carotene through the column in a shorter duration compared to previous reported methods. Therefore, it is recommended to adopt this protocol in epidemiological studies where beta-carotene is screened as a dietary biomarker associated with disease of interest by using human sera in the population level.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202210.0409.v1
Subject: Medicine And Pharmacology, Psychiatry And Mental Health Keywords: COVID-19; Anxiety; Mental Health; Hospitalized; Malaysia
Online: 26 October 2022 (09:55:34 CEST)
The COVID-19 pandemic creates anxiety among hospitalised SARS-CoV-2 patients. Therefore, this study aims to determine the prevalence of anxiety and its associated factors among stable inpatient COVID-19 patients in Malaysia. A cross-sectional study was conducted using a web-based online survey involving 401 patients from Malaysia's leading COVID-19 hospitals from 15th April until 30th June 2020 who were chosen using quota sampling. General Anxiety Disorders 7 items (GAD-7), Coping Orientation to Problems Experienced Inventory (Brief-COPE) and Socio-demographic profile questionnaire were used. Descriptive analysis and multiple logistic regression were performed using SPSS v23 to determine the prevalence of anxiety and its associated factors. The results showed that prevalence of anxiety was 7.0%. Multiple logistic regression analysis revealed that female (p < 0.05), fear of infection (p < 0.05), lack of information (p < 0.05), maladaptive coping mechanism of behavioural disengagement (p < 0.001) and self-blame (p < 0.001) were significantly associated with anxiety. Whereas adaptive coping mechanisms via instrumental support (p < 0.001) was a significant protective predictor of anxiety. COVID-19 infection has had a significant influence on the mental health of patients. Findings in our study provides baseline findings on prevalence of anxiety among stabilized COVID-19 inpatient in Malaysia. Despite the relative low prevalence, the data has the potential to improve the present mental health monitoring system and the deployment of suitable treatments in dealing with similar circumstances
BRIEF REPORT | doi:10.20944/preprints202210.0111.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Animal Science, Veterinary Science And Zoology Keywords: Animal reservoirs; Leptospirosis; recreational area; rodents; Malaysia
Online: 10 October 2022 (02:56:52 CEST)
Leptospirosis is an important zoonotic disease that is transmitted worldwide through infected small mammals such as rodents. In Malaysia, there is paucity of information on the animal reservoirs that are responsible for leptospirosis transmission, with only few studies focusing on leptospirosis risk in recreational areas. Therefore, in this study, we characterized the species composition and the prevalence of pathogenic Leptospira spp. in non-volant small mammals of Hutan Lipur Sekayu, Terengganu. We performed ten trapping sessions totaling 3,000 trapping efforts between September 2019 and October 2020. Kidney samples from captured individuals were extracted for the PCR detection of pathogenic Leptospira spp. Overall, we captured 45 individuals from 8 species (1.56% successful trapping effort), with 9 individuals testing positive for pathogenic Leptospira, that is 20% (n = 9/45) prevalence rate. Rattus tiomanicus (n = 22) was the most dominant captured species and was found to harbour the highest positive individual with pathogenic Leptospira (44.4%, n = 4/9). Despite the low successful trapping effort in this study, the result shows that the non-volant small mammals of Hutan Lipur Sekayu are capable of maintaining and transmitting pathogenic Leptospira, thus making this recreational area a potential infestation ground for leptospirosis.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202204.0096.v1
Subject: Public Health And Healthcare, Nursing Keywords: Health; Policy; Knowledge; Perception; Medical Students; Malaysia
Online: 11 April 2022 (11:07:12 CEST)
Background: Health policy is a set of comprehensive principles and legislations that guide how healthcare should be effectively delivered in the community. Medical schools should prepare students to undertake managerial responsibilities by incorporating health policy in the curriculum to deal with the intricacies of healthcare systems and their clinical roles in their future professional careers. Objective: To examine medical students' perception at a Public University in Malaysia regarding teaching health policy and their participation in health policy roles. Material and Methods: A cross-sectional study using universal sampling was carried out among the medical students using a paper-based questionnaire to collect the data. Results: Most respondents opined their willingness to learn health policy (80.9%) and that teaching health policy (83.6%) should be compulsory for medical students. The respondents thought health policy should be introduced earlier in Year 1 or 2. The student scores on their knowledge regarding health policy and year of study were significantly associated with their involvement in the health policy roles in both the simple and multiple logistic regression. Both statistical tests reported higher participation in health policy roles with the higher year of study, though only Year 4 and 5 were significant in the simple logistic regression and only Year 5 in the multiple logistic regression compared to Year 1. On the other hand, age and type of admission show significant results only in the simple logistic regression, while the race was only significant at the multivariate level. Conclusion: This study demonstrated that most respondents showed their willingness to learn health policy, participate in the health policy programs, and recommend that health policy be considered an essential topic in the medical curriculum, which should be taught right from the first year of medical school. We recommend encouraging students’ participation in health policy activities.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202108.0108.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Immunology And Microbiology Keywords: malaria; Plasmodium knowlesi; trends; retrospective; incidence; Malaysia
Online: 4 August 2021 (12:02:44 CEST)
While there has been a tremendous decline in malaria disease burden in the remote parts of the Malaysia, little is known about malaria incidence in its urban localities. This study aimed to analyse trends of malaria cases in urban Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. All suspected cases presented to a university hospital in Kuala Lumpur from January 2005 to December 2020 were examined by microscopy. Infection status was analysed using descriptive statistics and curve estimation analysis. Of 3105 blood films examined, 92 (3%) were microscopically confirmed malaria cases. Plasmodium vivax infections accounted for the majority (36.9%) of all malaria cases. Nearly half (47.8%) of cases were found among foreign cases (P<0.001). The majority of foreign cases were males (86.4%) and came from Southeast Asian countries (65.9%). Curve estimation analysis showed significant decreases of malaria cases due to P. vivax (R2 = 0.598; P<0.001) and Plasmodium falciparum (R2 = 0.0259, P = 0.029), but increase for Plasmodium knowlesi (R2 = 0.325, P = 0.021) during the 16 years. This study revealed that malaria incidence in urban Kuala Lumpur is low and has remained stable since 2005. However, P. knowlesi played a significant role in the increase of overall malaria in the area, highlighting the importance of continued vigilance and improved surveillance.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202105.0708.v1
Subject: Business, Economics And Management, Accounting And Taxation Keywords: Islamic fundamentalism; Salafism; Malaysia; terrorism; Indonesia; ISIL
Online: 31 May 2021 (08:09:39 CEST)
Islamic fundamentalism as a stream of Extremist claim a return to the true Islam and no compromise with the modern world has transformed the scene inside the country and in international relations as a threat and a serious contender in today's society. In fact, after September 11, 2001, expanded a serious debate about Islamic fundamentalism around the world. But it can be difficult to provide an overview of the history of political violence in which the phenomenon of Islamic fundamentalism as its starting point after September 11, is not mentioned. However, before the date mentioned in international studies, there are also traces of fundamentalism, But what is known today as the new form of Islamic fundamentalism, since 2011 and after the rise of the Middle East, was raised around the world and to create the challenges of Political sovereignty and security for the world's most strategic regions such as Europe and then Southeast Asia (especially Indonesia and Malaysia). Therefore, this research tries to answer this question: what is the most important factor in challenging the political sovereignty of states in Southeast Asia (especially Indonesia and Malaysia). The hypothesis is Islamic fundamentalism is a rival and threat against the sovereignty and national security of Indonesia and the Philippines. The result of this study explains and demonstrates the presence and role of Islamic fundamentalism in Indonesia and Malaysia as a serious challenge in the security-political reality of these countries. Therefore, this study seeks to recognize and address the challenges and threats that are faced by these two-country with the growth of Islamic fundamentalism.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201905.0073.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Education Keywords: VET, Government Plan, effectiveness, exploratory survey, Malaysia
Online: 7 May 2019 (10:32:49 CEST)
In Malaysia, as in many parts of the world, vocational education and training (VET) is frequently perceived as the solution to improving the opportunities of youths who lack the resources, skills or motivation to continue with higher education. The focus of the study falls on the effectiveness of the apprenticeship scheme during the 10th Malaysia Plan. This study may provide an opportunity to find out how the related parties react towards the apprenticeship scheme. This is important, as feedbacks are central to the success or failure of any scheme. It is expected that the relevant government bodies, private sectors, trainers and trainees will have a valuable insight on the progress this far and what need to be done in the future based on the outcome of the research. This study follows snowballing sampling method and gathers the information from apprentices from variety of industrial sectors. The findings indicate effectiveness at some types of training but lacks comprehensiveness and efficient use of resources and future direction, especially during the 10th Malaysia plan period from 2011 to 2016. This exploratory research is a first chapter of the deeper study in this niche.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201901.0239.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Sociology Keywords: Sustainability; Chinese culture; Moslem society; Malaysia; Indonesia
Online: 23 January 2019 (10:25:28 CET)
Abstract Sustainability of ethnic culture in Southeast Asia has made the dramatically growth of ethnic identity. The ethnic revivals already made the increasing of cultural events in public spaces. This research paper sought the cultural sustainability of Chinese in Moslem society of Southaest Asia. A multisited ethnography was conducted in Medan Municipal of North Sumatra and Georgetown Penang, Malaysia to observe the sustained Chinese culture as the symbol of ethnification of Chinese in Moslems society in Southeast Asia region. It found that after 2003 Indonesia already saw the attractive cultural performances of Chinese in public spaces as the continuation of sustainability. In our ethnographic investigation from 2014 -2017, the reshaping of the Chinese identity through sustainability of Chinese culture in Medan Municipality of North Sumatra, and Penang of Malaysia has the high public visibility. Research report showed the continuation of the Chinese rituals and festivals which were accompanied by music instruments of Chinese and theatrical performances. Those have been transformed from self commemorations to be more public; attractions already were moved to public places, not solely in temples or ethnic group surroundings as what commonly found in the past period. It concluded that the sustainability of Chinese culture in public spaces made the Southeast Asia connection among the Chinese groups solidify their identity in this region tightened.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201802.0158.v1
Subject: Engineering, Energy And Fuel Technology Keywords: biomass; functions; innovation systems; renewable energy; Malaysia
Online: 26 February 2018 (09:41:32 CET)
Malaysia generates significant quantities of Oil Palm Wastes (OPW) which can be potentially valorised into sustainable bioenergy as envisaged by the National Biomass Strategy (NBS-2020). Despite significant investments, policy directives and government support, the valorisation of OPW into bioenergy has remained low exacerbating waste management challenges. Therefore, the strategies and impediments to the rapid bioenergy development and bioelectricity generation from OPW require practical assessment. Therefore, this paper examines the level of development and diffusion of the biomass innovation system in Malaysia based on the Functions of Innovations Systems (FIS) approach developed by Dutch and Swedish researchers. Furthermore, the key factors hindering biomass energy technologies implementation in Malaysia and potential solutions were identified, highlighted and examined. Based on the FIS analysis the functions; entrepreneurial activities, knowledge development, and resources mobilization functions are well established in the Malaysian biomass innovation system (BIS). However, the functions of guidance of search; creation of legitimacy; knowledge diffusion and market formation are underdeveloped resulting in the low penetration of bioenergy in Malaysia. Other factors include; fossil fuel subsidies, numerous or conflicting energy policies and weak collaboration between academia and the industry. The outlined challenges can be addressed by revising fuel subsidies, Feed-in tariffs, RETs implementation, roles of supervisory agencies, and bureaucratic procedures for access to funds for research and development of bioenergy in Malaysia.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202012.0679.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Biochemistry And Molecular Biology Keywords: Antimicrobial resistance; Salmonella species; E.coli; Broiler chickens; Malaysia
Online: 28 December 2020 (10:49:17 CET)
Abstract:Salmonella species (spp) and Escherichia coli (E. coli) are the most common infectious pathogens in poultry. Antimicrobials were given either for the treatment or growth promoters that can increase the possibility of emergence of bacterial resistance towards antimicrobials. The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of antimicrobial resistant (AMR) Salmonella spp and E. coli isolated from a sample of broiler farms in East Coast Malaysia from 2018-2019. A total of 384 cloacal swabs were collected from broilers farms in Kelantan, Terengganu, and Pahang. The bacteria were isolated and confirmed by bacteriological and serological methods. Following that, confirmed isolates were subjected to antimicrobial susceptibility test. Salmonella spp and E. coli were recovered from the cloacal swabs samples with the overall prevalence of 6.5% and 51.8% respectively. In Kelantan, Terengganu and Pahang, the prevalence of Salmonella spp were 7%, 6.5% and 5.8% respectively, while the prevalence for E. coli were 50%, 48.3% and 58% respectively. Salmonella spp and E. coli displayed resistance towards the following antimicrobials: erythromycin (100% for both pathogens), chloramphenicol (76.2%, 84.5%), tetracycline (62%, 94.6%), ampicillin (47.7%, 87%), sulfamethoxazole/trimethoprim (42.9%, 83.3%), ciprofloxacin (4.8%, 23.8%), nalidixic acid (9.6%, 60.7%), streptomycin (19%,66%), and kanamycin (28.6%,57%), cephalotin (0%, 11%), gentamicin (0%, 20.2%) respectively. No resistance were recorded towards colistin for both pathogens. Multidrug resistance (MDR) was recorded in 82% of Salmonella spp and 100% of E. coli. These findings demonstrate the high prevalence of MDR Salmonella spp. and E. coli in broiler farms in East coast Malaysia. This could be attributed to the excessive use of antimicrobial agents by the poultry farm owners. Enhanced control measures and a strong monitoring system should be urgently implemented to reduce the emergence of antimicrobial resistance that is harmful to public health.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202008.0006.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Food Science And Technology Keywords: sustainable diet; carbon footprint; recommended nutrient intake; Malaysia
Online: 2 August 2020 (09:29:46 CEST)
A sustainable diet which is healthy and environmental friendly is a climate change mitigation option in addition to being a health promoting diet. However, there is a scarcity of information if the Asian diets are sustainable. Therefore, this study aimed to investigate if the diet of the Malaysian population is healthy and sustainable. This is a cross sectional study using dietary data generated from food frequency questionnaires (FFQ). The carbon footprint data were linked with the food items/ food groups in the FFQ. The nutrients of the participants’ diet were computed and the proportions of those who met the recommended nutrients intake were established. Contribution of carbon footprint for different food groups and total carbon footprint for each participant’s diet were computed and expressed as kgCO2eq. Comparison of carbon footprint from participants’ diets between age, sex and ethnicity were carried out. A total of 4825 participants were included in the analysis. Majority were Malays (66.4 %), females (84.0%), married (80.0%) and in the age groups of 30s to 40s (68.8%). The mean total energy intake was 2485+1000 kcal/day. Only 40 to 60% of all participants achieved the Malaysia Recommended Nutrient Intake (RNI) for calcium and less than half of the female participants who were aged 50 years and below fulfilled the RNI for iron. The most commonly consumed food groups were vegetables (270g/day), wheat, rice, fruits, sugar, seafood, poultry, legumes, snacks, milk and beef (46g/day). Total carbon footprint from the participants’ diets were 2.96 kgCO2eq/day, with the highest contributions of carbon footprint from rice, vegetables, beef, sugar, other cereals, poultry, seafood, wheat, milk, fruits, legume and snacks. Subgroups such as males, Malays and younger participants were more likely to consume diets with higher carbon footprint, compared to their counterparts. The participants’ diet was low in carbon footprint and environmentally friendly, however the quality of diet may need to be improved. Education measures should be targeted for all population and specifically for the sub-groups that consumed diets with higher carbon footprint.
HYPOTHESIS | doi:10.20944/preprints202308.1159.v1
Subject: Computer Science And Mathematics, Analysis Keywords: cashless payment; enablers; barriers; Malaysia; UTAUT 2; TRI 2
Online: 16 August 2023 (10:32:54 CEST)
This study investigated the factors affecting consumers’ acceptance to use cashless payment services in Malaysia through the construction of the Cashless Society Acceptance (CSA) model. The Technology Readiness Index 2.0 and Unified Theory of Acceptance and Use of Technology 2 were employed to create the CSA model. A total of 434 questionnaires were collected from Malaysian consumers, aged 18 years and above. The results show that Perceived Usefulness, Perceived Ease of Use, and Discomfort have the most significant influence on the consumers’ acceptance of cashless payment services with R-square of 71.4%.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202203.0235.v1
Subject: Medicine And Pharmacology, Pharmacology And Toxicology Keywords: Antimicrobial; Prescribing; Drug Resistance; Knowledge; Perception; Medical Students; Malaysia
Online: 16 March 2022 (14:44:53 CET)
Background: Worldwide, microbes are becoming more dangerous by acquiring virulent skills to adapt and develop antimicrobial resistance (AMR). This is a concern as this increases morbidity, mortality, and costs. Consequently, physicians need to be trained inappropriate prescribing, starting with medical students. Objective: Evaluate medical students' confidence in antimicrobial agent prescribing and drug resistance Methods: Cross-sectional study assessing medical students' knowledge, perception, and confidence in prescribing antimicrobial agents and drug resistance in a Malaysian University. A universal sampling method was used. Results: Most respondents believe that educational input regarding overall prescribing was sufficient. Regarding the principle of appropriate and accurate prescriptions, female medical students had less knowledge [Odds Ratio (OR)=0.51; 95% Confidence Interval (CI) 0.25-0.99; p=0.050]. Year-IV and Year-V students had more excellent knowledge than Year-III students regarding confidence in antibiotic prescribing. Year-V students also showed appreciably higher confidence in the broad principles of prescribing, including infectious diseases, compared to those in other years. Conclusion: Overall, medical students, gain more excellent knowledge and confidence regarding prescribing, including antimicrobials, as their academic careers progress.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202005.0152.v1
Subject: Medicine And Pharmacology, Epidemiology And Infectious Diseases Keywords: Covid-19; personal protective equipment; facemask; odds ratio; Malaysia
Online: 9 May 2020 (08:02:16 CEST)
Background: The COVID-19 transmission has been established to occur through respiratory droplets from coughing and sneezing. Health agencies have strongly recommended the use of facemask as a precaution from cross-transmission. Objective: This study investigated the prevalence of facemask use among visitors to the hospital. This study also investigated the demographic factors contributing to unacceptable facemask practice. Setting: This prospective observational study was done among hospital visitors to a district specialist hospital during COVID-19 pandemic outbreak. Methods: Individuals entering through dedicated entry point were observed for the type, category and practice of wearing personal protective equipment. Inclusion criteria for this study were any individual's ≥ 2 years old entering the treatment facility from selected entry points. Patients were categorized into two groups of acceptable and unacceptable facemask practice. The Pearson chi-square was used to test for differences in investigated variables in the univariate setting and Binary Logistic regression model was used in the multivariate setting. Main Outcome Measure: Prevalence, acceptance practice and odds ratio of unacceptance of facemask use. Results: Among 1652 individuals included in the final analysis, 1574 (96.9%) was observed wearing facemask with 1269 (72.0%) of individuals worn medical-grade facemask. However, among them, only 1397 (88.8%) individuals' facemask practice was acceptable while the reaming 177 (11.2) individuals were perceived with unacceptable facemask practice. Male individuals, Malay ethnic and high risk age group are 1.47 times (Odds Ratio: OR=1.47; 95% CI, 1.06-2.06; p=.023), 2.18 times (OR=2.18; 95% CI, 1.55-3.08; p<.001) and 1.99 times (OR=2.18; 95% CI, 1.42 - 2.77; p<.001) more likely to exhibit unacceptable facemask practice respectively. Conclusion: Extensive use of facemasks coupled with environmental hygiene measures is a public health strategy which can help to mitigate the COVID-19 epidemic impact. However, a targeted comprehensive strategy to improve compliance to proper facemask practice among the high-risk population is needed to achieve maximal protective benefit.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201803.0032.v1
Subject: Engineering, Energy And Fuel Technology Keywords: torrefaction; oil palm empty fruit bunches; pellets; thermogravimetry; Malaysia
Online: 5 March 2018 (06:57:31 CET)
Malaysia generates significant quantities of lignocellulosic wastes through the production of crude palm oil (CPO). Over the years, the accumulation of the oil palm wastes (OPW) have become an environmental burden. These problems can be addressed by pretreatment and valorisation of OPW in bioenergy as envisioned in the National Biomass Strategy (NBS-2020). However, current strategies for the OPW valorisation are inefficient and unsustainable resulting in increased environmental challenges. Therefore, this paper proposes the pelletization and torrefaction of oil palm empty fruit bunches (OPEFB). Furthermore, the thermal degradation behaviour and potential product yields from OPEFB pellet torrefaction will be examined. The results revealed that the mass yield (MY) decreased from 67.89% to 33.11%, whereas energy yield (EY) decreased from 88.29% to 49.18% as the torrefaction temperature increased from 250 °C to 350 °C. However, the energy density (DE) increased from 1.30 to 1.49 due to the increase in higher heating value (HHV) from 22.85 MJ/kg to 26.10 MJ/kg. Likewise, the severity factor (SF) increased from 5.89 to 8.84 with increasing torrefaction temperature. The results also revealed that effect of temperature on the torrefaction parameters; MY, EY, DE, and HHV are slightly reduced after 300 °C. Overall, the findings demonstrate that torrefaction improved the fuel properties and energy recovery potential of the OPEFB pellets.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201711.0013.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Education Keywords: English language; motivational intensity; survey; trends; challenges in Malaysia
Online: 1 November 2017 (10:58:01 CET)
The aim of this study is to explore the extent of English language teaching in Higher Institutions of Malaysia and investigate the current changes, trends and challenges in this niche. A sample of 100 English learners from public and private institutions participated in this study. Analysis of the responses indicated that English language is remaining to be difficult to master, due to speaking environment, proficiency of the teachers and other factors. However, the Government is on the right direction to improve this situation by following Common European Framework of Reference of Languages. As any other system, it takes time to put into realization and start up the mechanism. This observation carries a pedagogical perspective and includes the overview of the general picture based on Private, Public and Stand Alone English educational institutions. This study has highlighted the practical importance of British Framework of English learning and suggests to focus on emphasis of the learning process instead of a result.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202310.2060.v1
Subject: Environmental And Earth Sciences, Remote Sensing Keywords: Aboveground carbon stock; tropical forest; Landsat; Malaysia ecosystem; spectral indicators
Online: 31 October 2023 (09:56:37 CET)
The accurate estimation of biomass carbon in forests is of paramount importance for effective forest management and mitigating climate change. This study presents a novel approach to produce a high-resolution map of biomass carbon over forests in Malaysia using the Aboveground Carbon Density Indicator (ACDI) and a comprehensive collection of 12 years of inventory data, i.e., from 2012 to 2023. The ACDI was derived based on several vegetation indices (VIs) that were produced from the original Landsat images to indicate the level of aboveground biomass carbon (AGC) stock in the forested areas. The VIs includes Normalised Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI), Normalised Burn Ratio (NBR), Shadow Index (SI), Soil-Adjusted Vegetation Index (SAVI), Iron Oxide Index (IO), Modified Normalised Difference Water Index (NDWI), and Enhanced Vegetation Index (EVI). The ACDI was then integrated with ground-based measurements, and serves as a robust indicator for estimating AGC. This calculation was conducted on Google Earth Engine (GEE) platform to match the date of field observation with the satellite imagery datasets. The production of seamless mosaic of the latest date of Landsat imagery and the forest type classification were also performed on GEE. The forested areas were classified into three major types, which are dry inland forest, mangrove forest, and peat swamp forest. Results indicated significant spatial variations in AGC across Malaysia's forests. The derived AGC prediction models based on the ACDI varied among the forest types. Based on the estimates, a 30-metre resolution, wall-to-wall map of AGC across the entire forested region of Malaysia has been created. The ACDI was calibrated and validated using a separate validation plots dataset to ensure the accuracy of the AGC estimates. The total AGC in all types of forests in Malaysia was estimated at 3.0 billion Mg C with an attainable accuracy of about 80%. These estimates were also divided into categories and reported to the AGC at the state level. This high-resolution map provides essential information for various stakeholders, with critical implications for carbon sequestration efforts, conservation priorities, and sustainable forest management. The presented methodology not only showcases the value of combining advanced remote sensing techniques with long-term inventory data but also underscores the potential for similar approaches in other tropical forest regions globally. Ultimately, this study contributes to the understanding of carbon dynamics in Malaysian forests and promotes effective strategies for mitigating climate change through better-informed forest conservation and management practices.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202308.1372.v1
Subject: Computer Science And Mathematics, Computational Mathematics Keywords: Tourism; HIV; AIDS; Malaysia, mathematical model; reproduction number; sensitivity analysis
Online: 21 August 2023 (02:30:00 CEST)
To assess the impact of tourism on the incidence of HIV and AIDS using Malaysian epidemiological data over the period of 1986-2011 with additional consideration for newborns infected with HIV. A population-level mathematical model was used to investigate: i) the role of tourism in the spread of HIV and measures used to reduce HIV spread in Malaysia; ii) whether the stability of infectious disease transmission is dependent on the flow of visiting tourists. We first derived an equation for the reproduction number (R0) threshold to quantify the contagiousness of HIV in Malaysia. Sensitivity analyses were used to determine the effect of various parameters on HIV transmission with respect to the increase in tourism. Our findings suggest that a stable disease-free state is sustainable based on the low value of R0 was 0.0017. This result is encouraging from a public health perspective. Approximately 14% of outbound tourists who leave the country return infected with HIV and the difference between the rate at which tourists move to the susceptible category and the rate at which tourists leave the susceptible is category is 12%. Estimated parameters for the influx of tourist rates, δ=1.1540x10-3[1.1477x10-3 - 1.15954x10-3], δ1=7.7901x10-4[7.7867x10-4 - 7.79418x10-4], and δ2=1.4030x10-8[-7.2287x10-7-7.5096x10-7], significantly impacted the spread of HIV in Malaysia. Some significant adjustments were made to the expected parameters. The methods used are helpful to public health analyses and provide a framework for epidemiological modeling of HIV spread among tourists. The trend and magnitude of tourist inflows may be determinants in the incidence of HIV and AIDS in Malaysia.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202106.0527.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Safety Research Keywords: safety knowledge; safety attitude; safety behaviour; SME; Malaysia; manufacturing; PLS-SEM
Online: 22 June 2021 (07:38:15 CEST)
.Most of the accident cases at work are caused by unsafe behaviour. Scholars have thus extensively researched factors of safe behavior.Safety leadership is stated as the most effective factor in safety behaviour. Besides, safety knowledge and safety attitudes are also found to influence safety behaviour. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the nature of the relationship between safety leadership, safety knowledge, safety attitude, and safety behavior, which has been found to be limited or rare in previous research.A self-administered questionnaire was applied and was distributed randomly to 140 SME manufacturing workers and they were analysed using the structural equation modelling partial least squares (PLS-SEM). The results prove that safety leadership has a significant effect on safety knowledge, safety attitude, and safety behaviour, with safety knowledge and safety attitude mediating the safety leadership-safety behaviour relationship. Consequently, the results provide a more in-depth view of the relationship between safety leadership and safety knowledge-attitude-behaviour via adapting social-cognitive theory and social learning theory in solving safety issues in SME. This study also provides a starting point for researchers to better understand how effective safety leadership is provided by supervisors in terms of improving worker safety and safety knowledge-attitude-behaviour.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202006.0141.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Immunology And Microbiology Keywords: Wolbachia; tick cell line; Ctenocephalides; flea; Malaysia; in vitro culture; phylogeny
Online: 12 June 2020 (04:51:00 CEST)
Wolbachia are intracellular endosymbionts of several invertebrate taxa, including insects and nematodes. Although Wolbachia DNA has been detected in ticks, its presence is generally associated with parasitism by insects. To determine whether or not Wolbachia can infect and grow in tick cells, cell lines from three tick species, Ixodes scapularis, Ixodes ricinus and Rhipicephalus microplus, were inoculated with Wolbachia strains wStri and wAlbB isolated from mosquito cell lines. Homogenates prepared from fleas collected from cats in Malaysia were inoculated into an I. scapularis cell line. Bacterial growth and identity were monitored by microscopy and PCR amplification and sequencing of fragments of Wolbachia genes. The wStri strain infected Ixodes spp. cells and was maintained through 29 passages. The wAlbB strain successfully infected Ixodes spp. and R. microplus cells and was maintained through 2-5 passages. A novel strain of Wolbachia belonging to the supergroup F, designated wCfeF, was isolated in I. scapularis cells from a pool of Ctenocephalides sp. cat fleas and maintained in vitro through two passages over nine months. This is the first confirmed isolation of a Wolbachia strain from a flea and the first isolation of any Wolbachia strain outside the “pandemic” A and B supergroups. The study demonstrates that tick cells can host multiple Wolbachia strains, and can be added to panels of insect cell lines to improve success rates in isolation of field strains of Wolbachia.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201708.0078.v1
Subject: Environmental And Earth Sciences, Geography Keywords: Malaysia; Endau Rompin; landscape-scale management; ecotourism; rainforest to reef; Tiger
Online: 23 August 2017 (09:14:40 CEST)
In 1990 the Malaysian Government launched Vision 2020 with the goal of Malaysia becoming a ‘fully developed country’ by the year 2020. In this drive for development the country has been examining many of its key natural assets, exploring how to both preserve them whilst ensuring that they make the maximum possible contribution to national development goals. Endau Rompin is one of these assets, being the second largest National Park in Peninsula Malaysia. The rich tropical rainforest flora and fauna of the Park and its hinterland, however, are threatened by various anthropogenic forces, most notably deforestation and poaching; both of which have taken the Park’s flagship species - the Tiger Panthera tigris jacksoni – towards the brink of local extinction. Malaysia’s statutory East Coast Economic Region Development Council commissioned a study to consider ways of increasing tourism revenues from the Park while at the same time reversing these threats. The key conclusion drawn is that a more holistic, landscape-scale approach should be adopted, with Endau Rompin forming part of a wider strategic economic zone based around sustainable tourism and land management. The proposed expanded zone extends eastwards beyond the confines of the Park, across the coastal plain to the South China Sea, and onwards to the neighbouring Mersing Islands. This expanded zone is referred to as Malaysia’s new ‘Rainforest to Reef Region’.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202301.0520.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Area Studies Keywords: Energy diplomacy; Malaysia-Thailand Joint Development Area; ASEAN Power Grid; Regional cooperation
Online: 28 January 2023 (07:51:01 CET)
From the standpoint of Neoliberal Institutionalism, this study explores Malaysia's participation in activities that make energy the topic and/or object of foreign policies, whether through bilateral or multilateral engagements. This research, which aims to evaluate the relevance of energy in Malaysia's economy and diplomacy and to explain Malaysia's reason for its involvement in these cooperations, is necessary because of Malaysia's growing involvement in the global energy market. Information for this study was gathered from a variety of government sources, interviews, published statistical data, and previous studies. The study demonstrates how vital energy is to Malaysia's economy. The Lao PDR-Thailand-Malaysia-Singapore Power Integration Project (LTMS-PIP) initiative, in which Malaysia is participating, is evidence of the viability of multilateral power commerce in the area. The Peninsula Gas Utilisation (PGU) pipeline in Peninsular Malaysia and the Four-Fuel Diversification Policy 1981 (4FDP 1981), which increases natural gas utilisation, are related to Malaysia's participation in the Malaysia-Thailand Joint Development Area (MT-JDA). Malaysia would want to think about streamlining its energy administration.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202205.0074.v1
Subject: Environmental And Earth Sciences, Waste Management And Disposal Keywords: Household waste; household waste management; sustainable city; integrated waste management model; Malaysia cities
Online: 6 May 2022 (10:27:56 CEST)
In recent years, Malaysia has faced environmental challenges caused by municipal solid waste, especially household waste, during the Covid-19 pandemic. Among all the household waste, plastic and paper are the most prominent waste that causes environmental hazards. Several recycling associations in Malaysia have carried out their practices for better waste sustainability and management to curb the increasing amount of household waste. However, the effectiveness is still vague in achieving smart and effective household waste management. Therefore, this paper aims to investigate Malaysia’s household waste management, mainly in three significant municipalities in Malaysia for Kuala Lumpur, Penang and Melaka, in becoming a resilient and sustainable city by addressing two main research questions 1) What are the key factors for ensuring the more success move for future household waste management in cities? and 2) How will the 3 municipalities address their waste issues based on the key factors from RQ1, respectively? This paper reviewed 13 waste management articles and explores the potential of the four factors of waste management from the perspective of technology and data, economy, social and governance. The discussed factors and models contributed to an integrated future-proofing framework that focuses on smart waste tracking, an gamified awareness education, and strict policies to control waste management are the way forward for the future of smart cities household waste management.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202105.0215.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Biochemistry And Molecular Biology Keywords: Cymothoida; marine fish parasite; South China Sea; east coast Malaysia; crustacean fish parasite
Online: 10 May 2021 (15:32:00 CEST)
A checklist of parasitic cymothoids from Malaysian waters is presented based on available literature and material collected from 2010 to 2020. Most of the collected specimens were recorded from waters of Terengganu, east coast of Peninsular Malaysia (facing South China Sea), whereas literature records were represented from Sarawak, along the Miri coast of northwest Borneo. The checklist comprises 18 species under 10 genera, seven of which are new records from Malaysia, which includes Anilocra nemipteri Bruce, 1987; Ceratothoa barracuda Martin, Bruce and Nowak, 2015; Ceratothoa carinata (Bianconi, 1869); Cymothoa epimerica Avdeev, 1979; Elthusa sigani Bruce, 1990; Joryma engraulidis (Barnard, 1936) and Renocila richardsonae Williams and Bunkley-Williams, 1992. Eight new host records are based on collected specimens: Anilocra nemipteri was dorsally attached on Nemipterus nemurus (Bleeker 1857), Nemipterus nematophorus (Bleeker 1854), Nemipterus tambuloides (Bleeker 1853), and Nemipterus thosaporni Russell 1991 (family Nemipteridae); Ceratothoa carinata was found in the buccal cavity of Decapterus macrosoma Bleeker 1851 (family Carangidae); Cymothoa eremita (Brunnich, 1783) was attached in the buccal cavity of Nemipterus tambuloides and Nemipterus furcosus (Valenciennes 1830); Elthusa sigani was found attached on Pterois russelli Bennett 1831 (family Scorpaenidae); and Renocila richardsonae was attached on the caudal fin of Upeneus japonicus (Houttuyn 1782) (family Mullidae). All cymothoid species listed here are known to have a Central Indo Pacific distribution, with some ranging as far as the western Indian Ocean. The cymothoid-host association is here listed from 28 fish families, with the most common reported from Carangidae (pompanos, jack mackerels, runners, scads), Engraulidae (anchovies) and Leiognathidae (ponyfishes, slipmouths). This paper is the first comprehensive treatment to update both verified literature data and deposited specimens, with a key for the family Cymothoidae in Malaysian waters.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202011.0589.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Biochemistry And Molecular Biology Keywords: Orchid, Longifoliae; Speciosae; Fuliginosae; Flaccidae; Coelogynae; Tomentosae; Verrucosae; phylogeny; morphology; taxonomy; Malaysia; classifications
Online: 23 November 2020 (14:23:47 CET)
The phylogenetic relationships among the Peninsular Malaysian orchid genus Coelogyne were studied by morphological characteristics and by sequencing the internal transcribed region (ITS) from the nuclear ribosomal DNA (nrDNA). Coelogyne is a large genus of about 200 species distributed in pantropical areas from the Himalayas, Sri Lanka, India, Southern China and throughout South East Asia to Papua New Guinea. The widely accepted previous classification system was exclusively based on floral morphology. There were very few molecular systematic studies of Coelogyne done in Peninsular Malaysia thus far. In this study, 59 Coelogyne taxa were collected from throughout Peninsular Malaysia and 57 of them were identified to the species level. To study the phylogeny of this genus, morphological characters were utilized together with molecular evidences to generate the systematic hypotheses. Cluster analysis was performed using both the vegetative and floral characters. The results showed that three sections of Peninsular Malaysian Coelogyne, namely Longifoliae, Speciosae and Fuliginosae were sister groups which were more closely related by forming one clade than they were with the other sections. Another clade consisted of four other sections, namely Flaccidae, Coelogynae, Tomentosae and Verrucosae. Molecular phylogenies obtained by using the Neighbour Joining method revealed the close relationship between the sections Tomentosae and Verrucosae, whereas usage of the Maximum Likelihood method demonstrated that three sections namely Longifoliae, Speciosae and Fuliginosae were sister groups since they formed a single clade.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202208.0550.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Behavior Sciences Keywords: stigma; cancer patients; Malaysia; Malay version of the Shame and Stigma Scale; reliability; validity
Online: 31 August 2022 (15:49:35 CEST)
Assessment of stigma among cancer patients is of utmost importance as stigma may lead to various psychological sequelae and lower quality of life. This study aimed to translate the English version of the Shame and Stigma Scale (SSS) into Malay and validate the Malay version of the SSS (SSS-M) among cancer patients in Malaysia. Initially, concurrent translation and back translation of the SSS-M was performed, and face and content validity were assessed. Then, the SSS-M was administered to a total of 234 patients of mixed types of cancer to assess its reliability (internal consistency and test-retest reliability), construct validity (convergent and discriminant validity), exploratory factor analysis (EFA) and confirmatory factor analysis (CFA). The SSS-M total score registered good internal consistency (Cronbach’s α of 0.886) and test-retest reliability (intraclass correlation coefficient of 0.846, p < 0.001). EFA and CFA confirmed that the SSS-M consisted of 20 items in 5 domains. Its convergent and discriminant validity were achieved. Hence, the SSS-M demonstrated good psychometric properties and is available for use to assess stigma among cancer patients in Malaysia.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202210.0094.v1
Subject: Public Health And Healthcare, Nursing Keywords: Stroke; informal caregiver; burden; Zarit Caregiver Burden Interview; Caregiver Assessment of Function and Upset; Malaysia
Online: 8 October 2022 (05:08:31 CEST)
Taking care of stroke survivors can be taxing, however, it was understudied in Malaysia. This study aims to describe the burden of informal stroke caregivers within three months after hospital discharge. A longitudinal study design was conducted. Acute stroke survivors and their informal caregivers were recruited prior to hospital discharge, and the caregivers were interviewed by phone. Self-reported caregiver burdens were measured with Zarit Caregiver Burden Interview – Malay version (MZBI) and Caregiver Assessment of Function and Upset – Malay version (Malay-CAFU). The MZBI and Malay-CAFU scores were collected four times within three months. A total of 85 stroke survivors and 155 informal caregivers were recruited, with 58.1% of the caregivers were female. The stroke survivors had two caregivers on average. The mean (SD) scores for the three scales show a reduction, from 27.42 (12.73) in the first week to 17.77 (11.20) in the third month for MZBI, from 1.14 (0.94) to 0.62 (0.64) for instrumental activities of daily livings (IADL) of Malay-CAFU upset scale and 1.36 (1.00) to 0.78 (0.65) for activities of daily living (ADL) of Malay-CAFU upset scale in the same period. Stroke survivors may have several caregivers, usually their spouses or children. Within a short period, the caregiver’s burden was reduced. Early psychosocial support to alleviate the caregiver burden may be necessary.
SHORT NOTE | doi:10.20944/preprints202005.0287.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Aquatic Science Keywords: COVID-19; small scale fisheries; artisarnal fishers; coastal communities; marine protected area; Malaysia; fisheries; impacts
Online: 17 May 2020 (08:46:10 CEST)
As early as February 2020, many countries have started imposing measures to curb the spread of Covid-19. Despite the right intention, it is a challenging moment for the people, especially the rural population living in the coastal areas. The document presents the preliminary findings on the impacts of Covid-19 on the small scale fisheries in Tun Mustapha Park, Sabah, Malaysia.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202203.0378.v1
Subject: Public Health And Healthcare, Public Health And Health Services Keywords: COVID-19; pandemic; impact; healthcare; lockdown; movement control order; Malaysia; medical services; dental services; pharmacy services
Online: 29 March 2022 (09:45:10 CEST)
Malaysia implemented a movement control order (MCO) to curb the spread of the SARS-CoV-2 virus in March 2020. Despite healthcare services remaining operational, rising COVID-19 infections and MCO restrictions have forced healthcare professionals to seek a compromise between service capacity and standard operating procedure compliance. A cross-sectional survey was conducted among public and private sector doctors, dentists and pharmacists to determine how lockdown measures impacted healthcare services. Responses from 413 doctors, 193 dentists, and 163 pharmacists were analysed. Pharmacy services remained mostly unaffected throughout the MCO. In contrast, operational capacities for surgical and dental services were severely affected during the MCO. All service sectors reported restricting patients or accompanying individuals at the workplace, reductions in staffing capacity, and shortened patient contact time at various degrees. Many pharmacy and medical participants reported supplying extended medication supplies to patients. Adoption of virtual healthcare services was generally poor. All private service sectors suffered financial losses ranging between 59 to 75%. Periodic assessments of the healthcare system throughout the pandemic are required to identify which patients have their treatment compromised so that healthcare managers and policy makers can plan and implement appropriate interventions that help alleviate pressure within the health system.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202301.0478.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Safety Research Keywords: Nanotechnology; Risk assessment and management; safety and health; Nano worker; DOSH guideline; IRGC framework; policy advice; Malaysia
Online: 26 January 2023 (10:41:49 CET)
In its 8th Malaysia Plan (MP*), the Malaysian government has given nanotechnology development a high priority and has been made a Strategic Research (SR) programme. Consequently, an exhaustive and long-term approach is essential. Additionally, specific laws are required to provide an optimal health and safety environment for workers. Consequently, the current study intends to assist Malaysian policymakers in promoting improved safety, risk assessment, and management for nanotechnology workplaces, as well as drafting a comprehensive policy for the recently released DOSH guideline in 2018. Utilizing a unique methodology, this study evaluated the assessment and management of nanotechnology health and safety risks in Malaysia using the international risk governance council (IRGC) framework. In addition to document analysis, n = 20 semi-structured interviews were conducted with representatives of several nanotechnology platforms to collect data that was then analyzed thematically. The research evaluated current workplace safety regulations and laws. Consequently, we propose a future dynamic strategy for Malaysian nanotechnology with more favourable upgrades supported by increased concentrations in the following areas: I policy creation, ii) comprehensive management system, iii) knowledge transfer, and iv) infrastructure management. In addition, the findings highlight the need of cross-sectional communication in bridging existing gaps. This study laid the groundwork for a more systematic and comprehensive health and safety strategy.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201701.0050.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Anatomy And Physiology Keywords: Interleukin-1 receptor antagonist (IL-1Ra); Interleukin-4 (IL-4); Variable Number Tandem Repeat (VNTR); obesity; adiposity; Malaysia.
Online: 10 January 2017 (10:27:41 CET)
IL1RA intron 2 86-bp repeat and IL4 intron 3 70-bp repeat are VNTRs that have been associated with various diseases, but their role in obesity is elusive. The objective of this study was to investigate the association of IL1RA and IL4 VNTRs with obesity and adiposity in 315 Malaysian subjects (128 M/187 F; 23 Malays/251 ethnic Chinese/41 ethnic Indians). The allelic distributions of IL1RA and IL4 were significantly different among ethnicities, and the alleles were associated with total body fat (TBF) classes. Individuals with IL1RA I/II genotype or allele II had greater risk of having higher adiposity - even after controlling for ethnicity [Odds Ratio (OR) of I/II genotype = 12.21 (CI = 2.54, 58.79; p = 0.002); II allele = 5.78 (CI = 1.73, 19.29; p = 0.004)]. However, IL4 VNTR B2 allele was only significantly associated with overall adiposity status before adjusting for ethnicity [OR = 1.53 (CI = 1.04, 2.23; p = 0.03)]. TBF was also significantly higher in those with IL1RA II allele compared with I allele (31.79 ± 2.52 vs. 23.51 ± 0.40; p = 0.005). Taken together, IL1RA intron 3 VNTR seems to be a genetic marker for overall adiposity status in Malaysian subjects.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201911.0296.v1
Subject: Environmental And Earth Sciences, Environmental Science Keywords: crowdsourcing; citizen science; Flickr; land cover/use; social media; volunteered geographic information; wildlife tourism; Borneo Pygmy Elephant; Sabah; Malaysia; SDGs
Online: 24 November 2019 (16:40:15 CET)
This pilot study explores the potential of using a citizen science approach for sourcing volunteered geographic information via social media to research wildlife tourism interactions with endangered Borneo Pygmy Elephants on the lower Kinabatangan River in Sabah, Malaysia. Such information is critical if the lower Kinabatangan region is to achieve the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals through a sustainable tourism industry based around viewing the pygmy elephants. Guests and guides from the Sukau Rainforest Lodge were encouraged to become close-range remote sensors by sharing geotagged photographs of pygmy elephant sightings on Flickr. A ten week on-ground trail generated 247 photographs shared by 17 individual contributors with approximately two-thirds (65%) of photographs being georeferenced for the time and location of the elephant sighting. Plotting those sighting to explore the vegetation matrix (i.e. remnant forest or oil palm plantation) showed almost three-quarter (73%) of the sightings occurred within 1 km of an oil palm plantation. Of greater concern is that one in two sightings (50%) along the river occurred within the 500 m of an oil palm planation, which is inside the riparian buffer that the Sabah Government recommended for conservation of the elephants in their Lower Kinabatangan range. This study therefore demonstrates proof of concept for this research method and its further application at the nexus of wildlife conservation and sustainable ecotourism research.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201804.0357.v1
Subject: Engineering, Control And Systems Engineering Keywords: hydrokinetic; energy assessment; unregulated river; daily water velocity estimation; daily water level estimation; IBM statistical package for social sciences (SPSS); regression analysis; east malaysia
Online: 27 April 2018 (08:39:22 CEST)
Electrification coverage in Sarawak is the lowest at 78.74%, compared to Peninsular Malaysia at 99.62% and Sabah at 82.51%. Kapit, Sarawak with its 88.4% populations located in rural areas and mostly situated along the main riverbanks has great potential to generate electrical energy by hydrokinetic system. Yearly water velocity data is the most significant parameter to perform hydrokinetic analysis study. Nevertheless, the data retrieved from local river databases are inadequate for river energy analysis, thus hindering its progression. Instead, flow rates and rainfall data had been utilised to estimate the water velocity data. This signifies no estimation of water velocity in an unregulated river by using water level data had been made. Therefore, a novel technique of estimating the daily average water velocity data in unregulated rivers is proposed. The modelling of regression equation for water velocity estimation was performed and two regression model equations were generated to estimate both water level and water velocity on-site and proven to be valid as the coefficient of determination values had been R2 = 87.4% and R2=87.9%, respectively. The combination of both regression model equations can be used to estimate long-term time series water velocity data for type-C unregulated river in remote areas.