University of Dhaka, Bangladesh
Title: “Scytonemin” pigment from Lyngbya notarisii (Menegh.) Wille (Cyanobacteria) may protect human skin from UV radiation.
Abdul Aziz has completed his PhD from University of Durham in 1985. He is a professor of Botany, published over 100 research papers and served as a Chief Editor, Bangladesh J. Botany. He has developed large-scale Azolla pinnata (used as poultry and fish feed) production system in ponds round the year; bio-indicator of arsenic pollution and measuring arsenic in groundwater using Azolla filiculoides; discovered new phenomena of cyanobacterial morphogenesis like differentiation of a hormogonium or a hair depending on availability of PO4-P in the environment from a single cell; sorted out taxonomic confusions on stigonematalean members and Lyngbya notarisii.
Mature filament of Lyngbya notarisii (Menegh.) Wille, is characterized by having 10-12 layered sheath around a trichome with reddish-brown pigment called ‘scytonemin’. The filament attained about 3 cm long and 42 µm wide when grown in Chu 10D medium for 15 days under a continuous light flux of 50 µE m-2 s-1 and at a temperature of about 25º C. The ‘scytonemin’ produced by cells is diffused into a few innermost sheath layers. A filament when placed on a glass slide with Chu 10D medium and exposed to direct sunlight for two days, huge quantity of reddish-brown water-soluble ‘scytonemin’ oozes out through open end of the filament. The released ‘scytonemin’ after drying formed black flakes. The ‘scytonemin’ is known to protect cells from near UV radiation. Therefore, it may be used as a protecting agent of human skin from UV radiation and in other therapeutics. The filaments having large amount of sheath material may be processed for industrial uses.