Dynamics in Government export policies and impact on castor oil

Castor oil business is one of the powerful marks in the Indian export right from the days of  past.Current estimates account for a foreign exchange of Rs:8000 million from an export of over 200,000 tonnes of castor oil for the nation but the trend is not a constant process when a sudden depression was noticed in the castor oil export from India in 2008.The prime reason was an unexpected notification from The Ministry of Commerce,India stating a ban on the export of castor oil and other oils derived from woody tress.It was reported that the files pertaining to the export castor oil were not processed with reference to ban and ultimately made a halt in the exchange of castor goods.  The Government on the other hand declared that their decision was with the motto of welfare.It resulted in  manufacturers and traders to remain displeased over the existence of prohibition on concerned commodities.

From a mass point of view, the authouritarian’ move may sound positive and optimistic but it does not seem to hold up its credit under all the the circumstances especially with cases like castor as the entire world depends on Indian raw material for generation of industrially potent chemicals.As the responsibilities the export and import partners carrying in their business deal are something immense,they should not be denied and taken as granted by the National Government in the implementation of their emergency policies.So it is on par vital that the Government must realize and understand the commitments of entrepreneurs,traders and business personals in their legal export activities and appropriate negotiations are to be compulsorily executed in advance so as to achieve a timely regulation in export and revenue generation without severe loss for both sides.It is not alone an issue of economics but words of promise and prestige that our exporters vow upon to loyal business colleagues abroad in trading. So circumstances such as this should not arise unless otherwise an extreme condition prevails.

For reference:http://www.thehindubusinessline.com/todays-paper/article1619902.ece

Biosensor development for ricin toxin

Ricin detection in  biological samples is of great significance as the toxin is reported to be a candidate substance for intoxication in bio-terrorism, suicide etc.By classical methods people have exploited antibody based immuno probes for detection of test toxin in materials under observation.However it suffers from certain drawbacks including sensitivity,cross-reactivity,time and technical preparation.It prompted researchers around the world to surf for alternate probes in bio-sensor developments which can effectively circumvent these problems.

Scientists from Japan have made use of natural molecular interaction behaviour of toxin and designed a novel probe to profile the toxin.By applying knowledge in ligand-receptor chemistry of ricin in biological systems,they have designed a synthetic analogue that acts as a ligand to toxin.It was immobilized onto a solid matrix to serve in stationary phase and ricin incubation was performed.The toxin bound to the test probe was assessed by a special spectroscopic technique Surface Plasmon Resonance(SPR) which indicated ricin at concentrations of 5 pg/ml in 5 minutes which the authours claimed as a benchmark in biosensor designing.The results obtained from this new probe were further validated by alternate methods for specificity.

The experimental research work was exciting as a analysts have completed a broad study and generated promising results with cutting edge technologies in the qualitative and quantitative fingerprinting of castor toxin.A technique that is pointed in nature proportionately requires professional perfection for absolute analysis.

For reference:http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0956566308004016

Candidate catalyst for ricin toxin activation

Ricin toxin from castor is a dimeric toxin and initially synthesized as a toxoid but found to be processed in castor beans during the course of seed development.As the protein is localized in the cellular sub components, protein bodies of seed endosperm, researchers from UK have made their experimental investigation on concerned cell organelles of storage function for the detection of molecular factor with catalytic potential to transform the inactive toxin to its lethally active phase.Protein profiling was adopted after isolation and fractionation of crude mixtures from protein bodies to identify the specific target and the results confirmed the materialistic presence of an acid endopeptidase enzyme.The functional relevance for this enzyme over toxin transformation was evaluated by in vitro assays where active toxin release was noticed  from its precursors.

Scientists from this study were able to detect a key candidate acting as an accelerator of ricin toxicity and offered us a solution to target the molecular components in castor with flexibility for producing non toxic seeds instead of a restricted direct focus over the toxin.However it is vital to understand the specificity in this toxin-catalyst association for precise targeting to improve the application potential of castor crop.

For reference: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/0168945285901116

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Joint entrepreneurships in Indian castor oil market

Industrial ventures and merges are in progression in castor oil business currently. As the prices and supply demand continue to surge in this oil sector,bulk manufacturers have obviously realized that it is the collaboration as a strategic tool to cope up with this dynamic trend for a successful run in production of castor oil.

Two Indian castor oil giants namely Adani Wilmar and NK Industries  from the Gujarat state have entered into an agreement for joint venture-ship in production of castor oil.As per the press release from the concerned sources,the unit functions under the name AWN Agro Ltd and commences its operation from May.The industrial partners also stated that their production capacity is 3000tonnes oil per day from the current production infrastructures.However no clear information has been presented regarding financial status of the new facility as the managing director of Adani Wilmar,Mr:Pranav Adani claimed that it is quite early to declare fact sheets. The joint proposal was even appreciated by Mr:Vittal Udeshi,Chairman of Jayant Agro Organics Ltd over the business expansion.

It is interesting to watch the business proceedings and the shifts with respect to the availability of raw materials.It seems to be condition tolerated by firms who are well rooted in their respective ventures but is a matter of concern for  new entries to achieve a sustainable stand.

For reference: http://m.economictimes.com/PDAET/articleshow/8062780.cms

Castor seed prices stay high

Castor seed and oil have now firmly been established as products of expensiveness in the industrial market.On May 17,2011 prices of castor bold seed rose by Rs:35 to reach Rs:5175 per quintal from the previous day’s close while the castor oil also showed  a marginal rise.Regarding the future price contracts for the June delievery,the prices were oscillating and stood at Rs:4900 per quintal which was also a modest rise by Rs:7 from its previous close.

Castor oil and its related products are industrially expanding to satisfy the mass demands but a price regulation is mandatory. Experts claim that a high price volatility may shift the market to chemicals which prove to have substitution potential.Hence it needs a regulatory framework for sustainable usage of this eco-friendly material.

For reference:http://www.business-standard.com/india/news/groundnut-oil-strengthensrising-demand/135500/on

Vaccine developments to ricin toxin

Ricin is a potent lethal cytotoxin derived from castor seeds and combatting its toxicity is a tedious task.Currently no effective antidote has ever been formulated so far and makes therapy difficult.It also places the victims survival purely as a matter of chance.As chemotherapy andd other mehods fail to produce productive results,scientists have started to employ vaccines as a possible tool to tackle the toxin.

US researchers from Army Laboratory in Frederick have found a vaccine containing an inactivated toxin that selectively retains an activity to boost the immune system without inducing lethal toxicity to mount systemic defence response in the body by protein engineering princples and found to be effective on animal models.The US Army has reported that currently trials are underway in 30 human volunteers and plans to conduct clinical trials as well at Fort Detrick.

Vaccines are powerful tools to produce solutions in a timely consistent and biologically safe way.Historical credits to vaccines in global health are something extraordinary  with reference to pathogenic diseases and attempts such as this to focus on vaccine vehicles and expanding their horizon to toxins neutralization would most probably yield a fruitful result in future to address the problems of global threat from castor toxin.

For reference: http://www.biosciencetechnology.com/News/FeedsAP/2011/04/army-starts-clinical-trials-on-ricin-vaccine/

Secondary metabolite profile in castor seed

Plant systems are rich in secondary metabolites as they play vital roles in plant development, interactions, resistance to abiotic and biotic stress etc as regulatory activators and suppressors of signal transduction physiology to mount the preprogrammed response. Virtually any evolved plant is packed with a vast array of metabolites and is well studied in medicinal herbs and shrubs, agricultural crops etc. However analysis of such functionally potent molecules in castor seed debris is rudimentary.

Secondary metabolites are  broad category compounds and scientists of this study have chosen to characterize one of the principal categories, phenolics from castor deoiled cake.The phenolics being non polar in nature differential extraction of molecules in cake was made with methanol-ether bisolvent system and they ended up with a biochemical mixture. Spetroscopic analysis showed a strong absorbance corresponding to phenolics and further chemical disintegration revealed five principal compounds namely p-coumaric acid, ferulic acid, o-coumaric acids, syringic, and cinnamic acids .

This is a remarkable metabolite profile for the presence of secondary metabolites. Eventhough the authors did not disclose the functional significance of them in seeds, it  could most probably be associated with herbivore feeding deterrent activity.

For reference: http://www.informaworld.com/smpp/content~db=all~content=a781971780

No fall in the castor seed prices

Castor seed is a precious commodity as the demand in  local and  markets abroad continues to remain high.At the Rajkot Commodity Exchange, castor seed prices stood at Rs:4818 per quintal which was a gain of Rs:48 from the previous day’s close.The pricing trend was also found to be similar when the May delievery and June contracts increased by Rs:23.50 and Rs:49 to Rs:4891 and Rs:4944 per quintal respectively at the National Commodity and Derivatives Exchange.

The castor seed prices stagnate at an elevated since January 2011 but the demand never to be falling due to expansion in its industrial utilities.It is important to note that castor seed and oil have witnessed a steep volatility in the market prices in the recent past.

For reference:http://www.indiainfoline.com/Markets/News/Castor-gains/3700211053

Microsatellite profiling in castor accessions

Markers are tags applied to detect polymorphism and are of different categories as phenotypic, protein, metabolite and DNA markers. Every marker tag has its unique advantage and DNA based markers are the most recently developed, routinely exploited to detect close polymorphic differences among subjects where the other classes do not reveal. Among multitude of DNA markers, micro satellite markers are notables as they seem to be single locus, co-dominant and multiallelic in nature. So it is employed to analyze polymorphism across the individuals in  bio-population since the principle claims that repetitive sequences for a locus in genome are highly variable and found to be unique for each individual.

Plant molecular biologists of Brazil chose PCR based microsatellite to identify polymorphism present in the accessions of castor germplasm. The application of genetic markers exposed eleven loci in typing but revealed only a diversity of two to five alleles in study loci on 76 accessions.

Marker assisted detection is important for polymorphism, hybridization, seed testing and germplasm management etc. It is a novel work followed in castor in spite of restricted degree in polymorphism in experimentation. The study can most probably be extended by increasing the number of markers of distinct classes to undertstand polymorphism in a deep way for intense crop improvement programmes.

For reference: http://www.amjbot.org/content/98/4/e87.abstract

Catalytic transformation of castor cake by Penicillium fungus

Castor cake is a by product from castor seed but remains as a substance with restricted application potential due to its allergenic and toxic properties.People traditionally have treated the castor cake by wild fermentation for the catalytic transformation of anti-metabolites into their corresponding non-toxic forms for improving its utility.

This age-old practice was scientifically approached by the Brazilian researchers where they subjected castor cake to solid state fermentation.Penicillium simplicissimum fungus was chosen as the catalytic factor because of its potency to manipulate in castor cake substrate and generate lipid metabolizing lipase enzymes.Solid state fermentation(dessicated fermentation) was performed for the cultivation of fungus and the products, enzyme and fermented castor cake were partitioned by solid-liquid phase differential extraction.Enzyme lipase magnitude in crude isolated fraction was determined from its activity against synthetic substrate while the debris cake fermented was evaluated for its toxic protein contents and functional activities by immunoassays and immuno sensitive cell culture assays respectively.The results proved to be promising as the toxin titre and allergens induced cell degranulation were seen to be minimum and the microbial enzyme production was noticed to a significant extent as well from specific activity studies.

Results turn out to be promising but the experiment would have been better if an utility for the fermented castor cake in biology was defined.The solid state technology by fungus seems to be a viable one on commodities like castor cake to generate high value products when time factor is not signified to a greater extent.

For referencehttp://www.scribd.com/doc/14281716/Use-of-a-Lowcost-Methodology-for-Bio-Detoxification-of-Castor-Bean-Waste