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Advancements in Life Sciences, volume 7, issue 4Cover; Volume 7, Issue 4
Published online: 31 August 2020
ISSN 2310-5380 

IN THIS ISSUE

 

Correspondence

MinION as a Teaching tool in a Graduate course in Pakistan
Wahid Ullah, Ikram Ullah, Gohar Rahman, Nasir Khan, Khawar Sohail, Muhammad Ilyas, pages 190-192
Read Abstract

 Genomics is a rapidly evolving field of study that is increasingly being utilized as a tool to detect ethnic and tribal-specific mutations that may be the key to rare and common diseases with higher prevalence in the population under study [1]. However, researchers and science educators in remote areas can often find it difficult to access the latest genetic technologies, probably due to its high costs and lack of suitable infrastructure. Recent technological innovations are resulting in portable, low-cost instruments that enable next-generation sequencing in remote environments, offering new opportunities to generate a more widespread network of trained geneticists [2]. We need to formalize educational efforts to teach students and young researchers with hands-on training to excel in molecular and bioinformatics knowledge. Here, we report our experience of using the MinION pocket size sequencer in a graduate course. The graduate course had some theoretical lectures that explained the basic principles of genomics followed be practical sessions. We hope that the training material developed during this course will provide the community with useful tools to help educate future generations of genome scientists in Pakistan. 

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Review Articles


The role of opioid and nitrergic systems in dual modulation of seizure susceptibility
Muhammad Imran Khan, Farid Ullah Shah, Abdul Wahab, Vahid Nikoui, Ahmad Reza Dehpour, pages 193-201
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 Epilepsy is a chronic disorder presented by recurrent episodes of seizures and affect worldwide individuals.  The underlying mechanism of seizure is still elusive. Hence, there is still a need to determine the contribution of various systems in neurobiology and treatment of seizure. Evidence shows that opioid and nitrergic systems within the brain interact to modulate various physiological and pathological conditions including memory, pain, reward, addiction, depression, and seizure. Various studies revealed that diverse dose of opioids such as morphine has dual modulation in seizure susceptibility. For instance, it is reported that morphine at lower doses (0.5, 1, and 3 mg/kg) exerts an anticonvulsant effect in experimental seizure models, whereas at higher doses (15, 30, and 60 mg/kg) it could exacerbate the seizure. Similarly, nitrergic system has also been observed to possess dual effects in modulating the seizure threshold. Therefore, understanding of opioidergic and nitrergic systems interaction in seizure seems important to achieve the successful goal of seizure management. This review aimed to clarify and provide insight into how opioidergic and nitrergic systems interact in brain and mediate seizure behavior. 

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Potential of Camel Dung as Promising Organic Manure in Saudi Arabia
Eitimad H. Abdel-Rahman, Fawzia S. Alzahrani, Abdel Moneim E. Sulieman, pages 202-207
Read Abstract

 Energy consumption in Saudi Arabia (KSA) is growing rapidly due to the high living standards, population growth and urbanization rates. KSA has planned for the development and use of biomass renewable energy sources, which are available abundantly, carbon-neutral and climate mitigation source. The main purpose of this review article is to analyze and discuss the challenges and opportunities of Camel Manure (CM) as an effective management of the livestock waste, and its potential development in the management of biomass and energy technology (BETM). The trends in the camel population growth projected at approximately 1.6 million camels in the Arab Peninsula and approximately 53% of the total in KSA with untapped manure falling along with the Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) making them ideal for energy extractions and applications in remote and rural areas. Research is needed to assess camel manure resources (supply and demand), the technology scope for economic, energy capacity and application evaluation to fill energy potential and challenges applications for KSA. 

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Life after COVID-19 outbreak: Expectations and thoughts
Aiman Zahra, Tanveer Hussain, Sikander Khan Sherwani, pages 208-214
Read Abstract

 The occurrence of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic presents an unparalleled health enlightenment challenge. It’s extremely contagious and erratically lethal, and the pervasiveness of asymptomatic prevalence makes it difficult to contain. All infectious disease epidemics rear ethical concerns, from the restraint of individual independence to triaging and resource provision. It seems that we did not take lessons from the preceding epidemics and were poorly prepared to pledge with the threat that COVID-19 epidemic has put forward. The COVID-19 epidemic highlighted the significance of this query to both pandemic preparation strategies and healthcare policies. As the outbreak turned out to be a global pandemic, there is an improved emphasis on finding answers for vaccine preparation, focusing on neglected diseases, more virome study, and research collaboration across the globe in the future, being key tools to resist infection spread in future. Decelerating the COVID-19 spread necessitates people to enthusiastically transform their lives and monitor the finest practices for social isolation and sanitation. This review provides an overview of future research perceptions and offers suggestions on how we can help people to believe in normal life and how this pandemic will strengthen the trade, affect the individual habits and values, revolution in primary health care after these uncertain situations. 

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Dog Coat Colour Genetics: A Review
Rashid Saif, Ali Iftekhar, Fatima Asif, Mohammad Suliman Alghanem, pages 215-224
Read Abstract

 Canis lupus familiaris is one of the most beloved pet species with hundreds of world-wide recognized breeds, which can be differentiated from each other by specific morphological, behavioral and adoptive traits. Morphological characteristics of dog breeds get more attention which can be defined mostly by coat color and its texture, and considered to be incredibly lucrative traits in this valued species. Although the genetic foundation of coat color has been well stated in the literature, but still very little is known about the growth pattern, hair length and curly coat trait genes. Skin pigmentation is determined by eumelanin and pheomelanin switching phenomenon which is under the control of Melanocortin 1 Receptor and Agouti Signaling Protein genes. Genetic variations in the genes involved in pigmentation pathway provide basic understanding of melanocortin physiology and evolutionary adaptation of this trait. So in this review, we highlighted, gathered and comprehend the genetic mutations, associated and likely to be associated variants in the genes involved in the coat color and texture trait along with their phenotypes. Moreover, genetic diversity of other associated genes were also pointed out to understand this phenomena in detail along with their genotypes for better understanding the expression and mode of inheritance of this trait for describing dog breeds with more accuracy. 

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CRISPR/Cas9 system: Current applications and future potential in rice breeding
Anh Phu Nam Bui, pages 225-231
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 Rice (Oryza sativa L.) plays a key role in human social and economic life. In order to meet the increasing needs of human food consumption, there is a constant requirement to develop rice cultivars with enhanced agricultural traits. The emerge of clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR)/CRISPR-associated proteins (CRISPR/Cas9) system provides unprecedented opportunities in studying gene functions and creating new rice varieties with better characteristics, including improved tolerance to biotic and abiotic stresses, and increasing yield and quality. This review aims to provide details about the latest results of CRISPR/Cas9 system application on rice to obtain better adapted to environmental and commercial demands. 

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Short Communications


Monozygotic and Dizygotic Twins Differences in Fingerprint Patterns of Swat District
Murad Ali Rahat, Adil Shah Khan, Romana Bibi, Muhammad Haris, Fazal Akbar, Muzafar Shah, Akhtar Rasool, Muhammad Israr, pages 232-236
Read Abstract

 Background: The identification of individual is important for both legal and humanitarian reasons. It is of great importance because every individual exists as an entity in a society and is dealt with as such by the legal system. The most commonly used method for identification is fingerprinting which relies on the uniqueness of ridges present on thumbs and fingers. These are unique in arrangements and remain constant throughout an individual’s life. Fingerprints of no two individuals are same even if they are twins. The power of discrimination of the basis of fingerprinting is about one in 64 billion. The study was designed to carry out analysis of fingerprints from mono and dizygotic twins and to differentiate them on the basis of fingerprinting.

Methods: This was a prospective cross-sectional study carried out among 30 pairs of twins including 17 pair of monozygotic twins and 13 pair of dizygotic twins. After taking an informed expressed consent, the participants were asked to press their individual fingers on the stamp pad. They were asked to then put and roll the stamped finger onto an A4 size paper on which blocks for each finger were already made. Both left and right hands were fingerprinted and with the help of magnifying glass, different types were identified including Arches, Composite type, Loops and Whorls. SPSS software was used for data analysis.

Results: There was 7.6% of Arch type, 6.1% of tented arches, 1.5% of plain arches, 62.32% of loops, 6.66% of double loop, and 3.83% of central pocket loop, 44.83% of ulnar loop, 7% of radial loop, 0.83% of accidental loop, 29.93% of whorls, 9% of plain whorl and 20.1% of central the pocket whorl.

Conclusion: When the left and right thumbs are compared with each other using eight (8) points, there are matches on the first six (6) points, matching percentage for each of these pairs of fingers is 75%. But when the both fingers were rotated on 180° and compared, the matching percentage was 87.5%. These 8 points fingerprinting can be used to distinguish twins. 

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Colour Vision Deficiency and Consanguinity in Pakistani Pukhtoon Population
Mian Sahib Zar, Muhammad Shoaib Akhtar, Abdul Rehman Haris, Muhammad Aslamkhan, pages 237-239
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 Background: Color vision deficiency is an X-linked recessive condition. This is more common among males as compared to females. This inherit from maternal grandfather to grandson usually. This study was aimed to find prevalence of color vision deficiency and consanguinity in Pukhtoon population of Pakistan.

Methods: Three hundred and fourteen (314) high school individuals of both genders were screened for color vision deficiency using pseudoisochromatic Ishihara Plates. Consanguinity of parents were also recorded. Frequency of color vision deficiency over entire sample was used to calculate prevalence. Chi-square is used to see association between color vision deficiency and consanguinity.

Result: Prevalence of CVD among males and females were 5.32% and 2.06%. Prevalence of consanguinity among parents of participants were 73.9%.

Conclusion: Study showed prevalence of CVD among males as comparable to already reported but among females the rate is relatively higher. Rate of consanguinity among study population is also higher than previously reported ones. 

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Full Length Research Articles


Exposure to low concentrations of heavy metals alone and in combination induces histopathological and genotoxic effects in fish (Labeo rohita)
Asma Yamin, Saima Naz, Riaz Hussain, Tuba Rehman, Ansar Shaheen, Ahmad Manan Mustafa Chatha, Abdul Ghaffar, Muhammad Ismail Abbas, Muhammad Sajjad Moazzam,
 pages 240-246
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 Background: The terrestrial and agro-aquatic ecosystems are continuously at the pity of human's negative impacts. Extensive and indiscriminate application of agrochemicals like heavy metals, industrial wastes, germicides, drug residues and different feed additives has become serious threats to public health. The current experimental trial was executed to investigate genotoxic potential of different heavy metals in fresh water fish (Labeo rohita).

Methods: A total of 120 active, healthy, free from  disease and internal parasites fish having three months of age were procured from local fish breeding center and were kept in glass aquarium having 100 liter water. After two weeks of acclimatization, fish were arbitrarily distributed and placed in different eight groups (A-H). Prior to start of experiment, acute toxicity of various heavy metals alone such as lead, cadmium, chromium and in combination (Pb +Cr)(Cr+Cd)(Cd+Pb) and (Pb+Cr+Cd) mixture were determined in-term of 96-h LC50 and lethal doses for Labeo rohita. After assessment of acute toxicity, all the fish were exposed to three sub-lethal concentrations (5, 7 and 9%) of heavy metals alone and in combinations for a period of 30 days in triplicate experiments.

Results: Different clinical ailments like, increased surface breathing, loss of coordination, rapid opercular movement, erratic swimming, air gulping, jerking movement and tremors were noted in fish. Histopathological observations of gills of various fish exhibited severe microscopic alterations. Results on micronucleus assay exhibited increased frequency of formation of micronuclei in red blood cells, while comet assays showed significantly increased DNA damage in peripheral erythrocytes in-term of arbitrary units of comets, average percentile rate of damaged cell and genomic damage index.

Conclusion: From the results of our experimental study, it can be concluded that fresh water fish are useful and reliable bio-indicators of heavy metal toxicity. Micronucleus and comet assays showed that heavy metals alone and in combination induced DNA damage in fish. 

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An investigation on permethrin-treated military uniforms against diurnal mosquitoes under field conditions
Mehdi Khoobdel, Morteza Akbari, Ali-Ashraf Aivazi, Seyed Hassan Moosa-Kazemi, Hemn Yousefi, Mohamad Reza Akbari, Davood  Keshavarzi, Mohammad Moradi, pages 247-251

Read Abstract

 Background: Military forces are exposed to mosquito bites because of their duties. In addition to the nuisance caused by mosquito bites, they are the vector of some vector-borne diseases in many countries of the world. Impregnation of military uniforms with permethrin is one of the most effective methods of protecting military personnel. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of permethrin-impregnated uniforms against diurnal mosquitoes under field conditions.

Methods:  In this study, one of the most common uniforms used in the Iranian military was treated by permethrin (0.125 mg. permethrin ai/cm2) and evaluated against the natural population of day-biting mosquitoes, in the rural area with Eight participants, three of them put on the treated uniforms and the other one of them wore the untreated uniforms and Four officers were also appointed as collectors.

Results: The average number of bites in those who wore untreated uniforms (control) was 1.8/min/person (107.8/hr), while it was 0.16 (9.83/hr) for treated uniforms. The protection of treated uniforms was about 91%. The knockdown rate for Culex and Aedes mosquitoes was 95.92% and 94.44%, respectively. The mortality rate in Culex was 98.59% and 98.61% in Aedes mosquitoes when exposed to treated uniforms.

Conclusion: In this study, military uniforms impregnated with permethrin showed significant protection against the bites of Culex and Aedes mosquitoes. This intervention can be used to protect military personnel from the bites of Culex and Aedes these mosquitoes and to reduce the diseases transmitted by these mosquitoes. 

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Effects of Carica Papaya Leaf Extract on Blood Hematology, Serum Biochemistry and Immune Response of Broilers
Muhammad Khalid Bashir, Muhammad Ashraf, Shahid Ur-Rehman, Sadia Razzaq, Muhammad Qamar Bilal, Sayeda Mariam, Madiha Tabbasum, pages 252-256

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 Background: As an alternative of antibiotic growth promoters, medicinal plants are the most popular options. Papaya leaves are good source of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and enzymes which provide aid in digestion of carbohydrates, proteins and fats and overcome the microbial load and used as a growth promoter and antibiotic in broiler performance. This study was carried out in order to evaluate the effect of papaya leaf extract in drinking water as a replacement of commercial antibiotic on blood hematology, serum biochemistry and immune response of broilers for the duration of 35 days.

Methods: In this experiment, 180 one-day old chicks were randomly distributed into 6 treatments. Each treatment was divided into 3 replicates having 10 chicks each. Feed was offered ad-libitum to broilers. Six treatments; G1 {(basal diet + antibiotic growth promoter (enramycin) + coccidiostat (salinomycin)}, G2 (basal diet without antibiotic growth promotor and coccidiostat), G3 (basal diet + 0.5% papaya extract), G4 (basal diet + 1.0% papaya extract), G5 (basal diet + 1.5% papaya extract) and G6 (basal diet + 2.0% papaya extract) were designed. Blood samples were taken for serum biochemistry, hematology and titer against Newcastle disease. Data were analyzed using analysis of variance technique by completely randomized design using SAS and Tukey’s test were used for comparison of means.

Results: Birds received various level of papaya extract had no effect on serum biochemistry and hematology parameters except triglyceride levels which were significantly lower in G2 (15.00±15.00, commercial diet) and G6 (17.43±9.87, commercial diet + 2% papaya extract) at 17th day and 35th day where it failed to show significant difference. However, Newcastle disease and infectious bursal disease titers were not affected by the treatments.

Conclusion: It can be concluded that papaya leaf extract may be used in broiler diet as commercial antibiotics replacement. 

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Development of a diagnostic scar marker for Vibrio shilonii caused acute hepatopancreatic necrosis disease in whiteleg shrimp
Hoang Tan Quang, Pham Thi Diem Thi, Tran Thuy Lan, Nguyen Duc Huy, Nguyen Duy Quynh Tram, Nguyen Thi Thu Lien, pages 257-263

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 Background: In a previous report, we showed that Vibrio shilonii was found on whiteleg shrimp (Litopenaeus vannamei) with acute hepatopancreatic necrosis disease in Thua Thien Hue province, Vietnam. This study was performed to develop a diagnostic molecular marker generated by random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) for V. shilonii rapid detection.

Methods: Pathogen Vibrio spp. were isolated from shrimps and fishes, and were identified by 16S rRNA sequencing. Genetic diversity of Vibrio strains was analysis by RAPD technique. Specific PCR product for V. shilonii was cloned and sequenced. SCAR marker was developed from specific PCR product.

Result: Twenty random primers were evaluated for RAPD to identify DNA polymorphisms between Vibrio species. The random primer OPN-06 generated a 468-bp DNA fragment specific for V. shilonii. This was then converted into a sequence-characterized amplified region (SCAR) marker designated N6-441.

Conclusion: Specific primers (Vshi-441F/Vshi-441R) amplified a unique DNA fragment in all V. shilonii isolates but not in the other Vibrio spp. This PCR assay showed significantly sensitive to the target DNA and reliably for the amplification the V. shilonii genome. 

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Biocontrol of MRSA and E. coli using bacteriophages from cow manure
Nimerta Kumari, Bushra Bano Patoli, Atif A Patoli, Shagufta Jabeen, pages 264-269

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 Background: Bacteriophages can be used as biocontrol agents to eliminate the undesirable and targeted bacteria in human beings, environment and industries. We aimed to isolate phages from cow manure and investigate their antibacterial and anti-biofilm formation effect against MRSA and E. coli species.

Method: E. coli and S. aureus isolates of clinical origin were sub-cultured on MacConkey’s and Mannitol salt agar media, respectively. To confirm the Methicillin resistance in S. aureusmecA gene was detected by the PCR using gene specific forward and reverse primers. The bacteriophages were isolated using enrichment procedure from cow manure. Their antibacterial and anti-biofilm formation activity was determined through the inhibition of bacterial growth and decrease in the absorbance of Crystal Violet through biofilm inhibition assay, respectively.

Results: The isolated phages showed clear plaque formation against MRSA and E. coli species. The time-dependent lytic assay showed a sharp decline in OD600 of MRSA and E. coli after one hour incubation with the phages. Biofilm inhibition was indicated by a decrease in the absorbance (OD595) of CV in a microtiter well plate

Conclusion: This is perhaps the first study to isolate phages from cow manure at local region and demonstrate their lytic efficiency against MRSA and E. coli, with the ultimate aim to use them as a promising biocontrol agent against antibiotic resistant pathogens. 

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Assessing the life quality in a Moroccan population of diabetics by the General Quality of Life Questionnaire SF36
Fatima Zahra Kehailou, Mohammed Jabari, Ali Labriji, Souad El Amrani, Said Aatil, Houriya Mestaghanmi, pages 270-276

Read Abstract

 Background: The quality of life assessment reflects the impact of chronic diseases on patients. The objective of our study is to assess the life quality of diabetic patients and to determine the factors that affect it.

Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted in 2019 in the Hygiene Service of the Sidi-Othmane district (Casablanca) in 526 diabetic patients. Quality of life was estimated using the SF-36 questionnaire to determine factors that affect mental or physical health. We used Pearson's correlation test for continuous variables and ANOVA for discontinuous variables.

Results: Our patients have an average of life quality considering PCS and MCS respectively (38.47 ± 9.28; 41.15 ± 10.55). Association analyses showed on the one hand associations between the PCS and the gender (p = 0.0001), professional activity (p = 0.0001), marital status (p = 0.0001) and with chronic complications (p = 0.0001). On the other hand, between physical activity and PCS (p = 0.0001) and with MCS (p = 0.0001), between the level of instruction and the PCS and MCS dimensions respectively (p = 0.0001; p = 0.011) between acute complications and PCS and MCS dimensions respectively (p = 0.0001; p = 0.001). The correlation study showed inverse correlations between PCS and age (p = 0.0001), the diabetes duration (p = 0.0001), HbA1c (p = 0.037), and BMI (p = 0.008), and between MCS, and BMI (p = 0.0001).

Conclusion: The presence of one of these factors (female, advanced age, high diabetes duration, complications, and unbalanced diabetes, low level of education, physical inactivity, and professional inactivity) leads to poor life quality. 

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Assessment of genetic diversity and genetic characterization of Nili Ravi buffalo breed utilizing microsatellite markers
Atia Bukhari, Naveed Ahmed, Fizza Khan, Muhammad Shafique, Asif Suleman Sahi, pages 277-280

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 Background: Livestock contribution to Pakistan’s GDP is 11.2% and it engages 8 million of rural families for their livelihood. Estimated population of buffalo is 40.00 million heads in Pakistan mostly consisting of low genetic worth population resulting in low productivity and pressure on natural resources. Assessment of genetic diversity and genetic characterization of indigenous livestock resources is an essential step towards conservation and to gauge effects of various breed improvement efforts on population genetics.

Methods: In present study genetic diversity of Nili Ravi buffalo population was assessed. A total of 196 unrelated Nili Ravi buffaloes from Punjab, Pakistan were sampled in this study. Genomic DNA was extracted and subjected to amplification using FAO recommended 12 Short Tandem Repeats (STRs) microsatellite markers. Among 12 microsatellite loci, 11 were successfully amplified (TGLA227, BM2113, ETH10, SPS115, TGLA126, TGLA122, INRA23, BM1818, ETH3, ETH225 and BM1824) whereas microsatellite locus TGLA53 was not amplified. Amplicons were resolved by genetic analyzer instrument and gene mapper software. Allele count, frequencies, gene diversity, heterozygosity, polymorphic information content (PIC) and linkage disequilibrium values were calculated by using Microsatellite toolkit v3 and Power Marker version 3.25.

Results: A total of 96 alleles were detected in 196 samples with average of 8.73 alleles per locus and range of 5 alleles (ETH 3) to 18 alleles (ETH 225) per locus. Gene diversity ranged from 0.198 (BM1824) to 0.841 (ETH225), observed heterozygosity values ranged from 0.081 (ETH10) to 0.831 (BM2113) and PIC values ranged from 0.191 (BM1824) to 0.825 (ETH225).

Conclusion: This study which will serve as a baseline to understand genetic dynamics of Nili Ravi buffalo breed. Highly polymorphic nature of STR markers will help in understanding effects of various breed improvements efforts on genetic diversity of Nili Ravi breed in future studies. 

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Evaluation of a recurrent mutation in HGF gene responsible for non-syndromic hereditary deafness in Kashmiri population
Kalsoom Zaigham, Hamna Tariq, Tanveer Ahmed Qaiser, Saad Bin Maqsood, Asma Ali Khan, pages 281-286

Read Abstract

 Background: Mutations in gene coding for hepatocyte growth factor protein, HGF are responsible for hereditary deafness worldwide. Evaluation of recurrent variations displays prevalent heredity diversity of a specific population. Mutational screening of HGF was aimed to ascertain the causative recurrent variations in Kashmiri families.

Methods: Kashmiri families were enrolled from different divisions of Azad Jammu and Kashmir. By employing linkage analysis all the families were screened for loci common in Pakistani population. Families linked with DFNB39 locus were subjected to direct sequencing for mutational analysis of variants prevalent in Pakistani population.

Results: Sanger sequencing identified a noncoding c.482+1986_1988delTGA variant of HGF as recurrent mutation in Kashmiri population. These findings implicate this HGF variant as major contributing variant of hearing impairment in Kashmiri families with a frequency of 8.8%.

Conclusion: This is the first study conducted to elucidate the founder effect and prevalence of HGF variants in Kashmiri population. This study increases the prevalence of HGF variants associated with hearing impairment in the Kashmiri families. 

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Scope of the Journal

Advancements in Life Sciences (ISSN 2310-5380) provides free platform for the fast peer-reviewed publication of articles covering novel and innovative aspects of biological sciences. Including full length research articles and short communications, we accept material in other categories too view other submission materials. This Journal publishes articles falling in the scope of “life sciences” ranging from molecular biological or genetic discoveries to biochemical systems and new microbiological concepts in human, veterinary and plant sciences. Multidisciplinary research articles, providing novel insight and original information, that would not be publishable in single discipline devoted journals are welcomed particularly in this journal for publication. The following research areas are covered in the Journal:

* Molecular Biology
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* Veterinary sciences
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