The Department of Physiology University of Karachi arranged an Annual Research Talk (ART) 2020-2021 a scientific event for the faculty members and students. The theme of the event was “Dynamics of Health and Research”.

The event included poster competition among students in two categories of thematic posters and research posters along with three faculty presentations by Dr Mufzala Shamim, Dr Faizan Mirza, and Hafiz Muhammad Usman.

Dr Shamim talked about the neuroprotective effects of curcumin for the risk of stroke and clinically established cases rising alarmingly. She emphasized that available pharmacotherapies have a very short therapeutic window hence identification of alternative therapeutic approaches is urgently needed. According to her study findings, regular consumption of phytochemicals like curcumin together with a healthy lifestyle considerably control the risk of cerebrovascular diseases.

Meanwhile, Dr Mirza discussed biogerontologic markers, studied in apparently healthy subjects of Karachi. While sharing his findings, he stated that olfactory performance and poor handgrip strength in addition to cortisol and HbA1c can be used as biomarkers for assessing accelerated aging in subjects belonging to the same chronological age bracket.

Later, Hafiz Usman talked about the scope of regenerative medicine and how the significance of stem cell therapy is increasing each day as the number of chronic degenerative diseases is increasing which lack the effective therapeutic criterion to date. He stated that a variety of stem cells can be utilized to treat numerous abnormalities and suggested that mesenchymal stem cells are one of the best choices among all types of stem cells to be extracted and cultured in a conditioned environment outside the body.

Another speaker, Maria Amir from Tabba Kidney Institute, who is a consultant dietitian, informed the audience regarding insight into diabetes and metabolic stress and how to beat diabetes through nutrition. She highlighted the significance of an appropriate diet for a healthy and well-balanced lifestyle.

On this occasion, the KU Vice Chancellor Professor Dr Khalid Mehmood Iraqi emphasized research promoting activities and encouraged students to excel and advance in research. He also encouraged students to solve grave issues of society through their research findings. He emphasized the significance of awareness sessions regarding healthy lifestyle patterns and stated that a well-researched society begets a harmonious, healthy, and happy society.

He also appreciated and awarded poster competition winners out of 80 posters presented with souvenirs and certificates. A thematic poster presented by Malaika Zafar, Monica Qasmani, Areeba Ahmed, and Hasana Khan on how to cure aging, a poster on does caffeine help in academic performance by Khaula Anwer, Falak Abrar, Ayesha Jamshed, and Laveeza Gul Azam poster on emphasis on emphysema were awarded certificates.

These undergrad winners from the thematic posters category and postgraduate research poster winners received their certificates from the KU VC Professor Dr Khalid Iraqi.

The postgraduate research posters on awareness regarding hen egg nutritional value and its consumption status among university students by Munnaza Khan, Hiba Asad, Hafiz Muhammad Usman, and cholelithiasis and left ventricular diastolic dysfunction by Qurat-ul-ain Qutbi, Rabiya Ayaz, Mufzala Shamim, Nazish Iqbal Khan, and cardioprotective effects of peer fruit cactus pad extract consumption in an experimental animal model of dietary dyslipidemia by Fizza Ishtiaq, Suvaiba Sultan, Mufzala Shamim, Nazish Iqbal Khan won the competition.

Author

Arshad Yousafzai is a Karachi-based journalist covering Education and Human Rights. He can be reached on Twitter @Arshadyousafzay

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