QIU prides itself on research projects that are designed to make real differences to the future we share.
We are proud to announce another success we have recorded in the realm of research, as researchers from the Faculty of Integrated Life Sciences received the Ministry of Higher Education’s Fundamental Research Grant Scheme.
Senior lecturer and Head of the School of Integrated Sciences Ts Dr Magaret Sivapragasam received the grant worth RM 89,831, for a research project titled “Elucidation on the Dissolution Behaviour between Chitosan-Ionic Liquids Complex Supported on SiO2 for Heavy Metal Extractions”
Her collaborators included her fellow FILS lecturer Dr Maisara Shahrom bt Raja Shahrom, Assoc Prof Dr Mohamad Azmi bin Bustam@Khalil from Universiti Teknologi Petronas and Prof Zurina Zainal Abidin from Universiti Putra Malaysia.
Dr Magaret told us that the study aims to investigate the dissolution of chitosan into green ionic liquids, which is done to extract heavy metals.
“Heavy metals are a serious pollutant which has adverse effects towards the flora, fauna and humans. Major sources of heavy metal pollutants originate from industrial emissions into water bodies, particularly in Malaysian rivers,” she said.
“Conventionally, low-cost chitosan-as adsorbents are considered a viable option for heavy metal adsorption due to their non-toxic nature, hydrophilicity and biodegradable properties.”
“However, the main obstacle of these biopolymers is their inability to be soluble in organic solvents. Ionic Liquids (ILs) have been widely promoted as a new alternative to replace conventional organic solvents. This study investigates the dissolution of chitosan into green ILs to extract heavy metals.”
The university has a tradition of constantly winning grants for its projects which include the Malaysia Toray Science Foundation (MTSF) Science and Technology Research Grant, Prototype Research Grant Scheme (PRGS), NKEA Herbal Research Grant Scheme (NRGS), Herbal Research Grant Scheme (HRGS), Fundamental Research Grant Scheme (FRGS) and others.
Congratulations Dr Magaret and Dr Maisara!