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Sample records for affects understorey plant

  1. Climbing plants in a temperate rainforest understorey: searching for high light or coping with deep shade?

    PubMed Central

    Valladares, Fernando; Gianoli, Ernesto; Saldaña, Alfredo

    2011-01-01

    Background and Aims While the climbing habit allows vines to reach well-lit canopy areas with a minimum investment in support biomass, many of them have to survive under the dim understorey light during certain stages of their life cycle. But, if the growth/survival trade-off widely reported for trees hold for climbing plants, they cannot maximize both light-interception efficiency and shade avoidance (i.e. escaping from the understorey). The seven most important woody climbers occurring in a Chilean temperate evergreen rainforest were studied with the hypothesis that light-capture efficiency of climbers would be positively associated with their abundance in the understorey. Methods Species abundance in the understorey was quantified from their relative frequency and density in field plots, the light environment was quantified by hemispherical photography, the photosynthetic response to light was measured with portable gas-exchange analyser, and the whole shoot light-interception efficiency and carbon gain was estimated with the 3-D computer model Y-plant. Key Results Species differed in specific leaf area, leaf mass fraction, above ground leaf area ratio, light-interception efficiency and potential carbon gain. Abundance of species in the understorey was related to whole shoot features but not to leaf level features such as specific leaf area. Potential carbon gain was inversely related to light-interception efficiency. Mutual shading among leaves within a shoot was very low (<20 %). Conclusions The abundance of climbing plants in this southern rainforest understorey was directly related to their capacity to intercept light efficiently but not to their potential carbon gain. The most abundant climbers in this ecosystem match well with a shade-tolerance syndrome in contrast to the pioneer-like nature of climbers observed in tropical studies. The climbers studied seem to sacrifice high-light searching for coping with the dim understorey light. PMID:21685433

  2. Effects of high-frequency understorey fires on woody plant regeneration in southeastern Amazonian forests

    PubMed Central

    Balch, Jennifer K.; Massad, Tara J.; Brando, Paulo M.; Nepstad, Daniel C.; Curran, Lisa M.

    2013-01-01

    Anthropogenic understorey fires affect large areas of tropical forest, yet their effects on woody plant regeneration post-fire remain poorly understood. We examined the effects of repeated experimental fires on woody stem (less than 1 cm at base) mortality, recruitment, species diversity, community similarity and regeneration mode (seed versus sprout) in Mato Grosso, Brazil. From 2004 to 2010, forest plots (50 ha) were burned twice (B2) or five times (B5), and compared with an unburned control (B0). Stem density recovered within a year after the first burn (initial density: 12.4–13.2 stems m−2), but after 6 years, increased mortality and decreased regeneration—primarily of seedlings—led to a 63 per cent and 85 per cent reduction in stem density in B2 and B5, respectively. Seedlings and sprouts across plots in 2010 displayed remarkable community similarity owing to shared abundant species. Although the dominant surviving species were similar across plots, a major increase in sprouting occurred—almost three- and fourfold greater in B2 and B5 than in B0. In B5, 29 species disappeared and were replaced by 11 new species often present along fragmented forest edges. By 2010, the annual burn regime created substantial divergence between the seedling community and the initial adult tree community (greater than or equal to 20 cm dbh). Increased droughts and continued anthropogenic ignitions associated with frontier land uses may promote high-frequency fire regimes that may substantially alter regeneration and therefore successional processes. PMID:23610167

  3. Effects of high-frequency understorey fires on woody plant regeneration in southeastern Amazonian forests.

    PubMed

    Balch, Jennifer K; Massad, Tara J; Brando, Paulo M; Nepstad, Daniel C; Curran, Lisa M

    2013-06-01

    Anthropogenic understorey fires affect large areas of tropical forest, yet their effects on woody plant regeneration post-fire remain poorly understood. We examined the effects of repeated experimental fires on woody stem (less than 1 cm at base) mortality, recruitment, species diversity, community similarity and regeneration mode (seed versus sprout) in Mato Grosso, Brazil. From 2004 to 2010, forest plots (50 ha) were burned twice (B2) or five times (B5), and compared with an unburned control (B0). Stem density recovered within a year after the first burn (initial density: 12.4-13.2 stems m(-2)), but after 6 years, increased mortality and decreased regeneration--primarily of seedlings--led to a 63 per cent and 85 per cent reduction in stem density in B2 and B5, respectively. Seedlings and sprouts across plots in 2010 displayed remarkable community similarity owing to shared abundant species. Although the dominant surviving species were similar across plots, a major increase in sprouting occurred--almost three- and fourfold greater in B2 and B5 than in B0. In B5, 29 species disappeared and were replaced by 11 new species often present along fragmented forest edges. By 2010, the annual burn regime created substantial divergence between the seedling community and the initial adult tree community (greater than or equal to 20 cm dbh). Increased droughts and continued anthropogenic ignitions associated with frontier land uses may promote high-frequency fire regimes that may substantially alter regeneration and therefore successional processes. PMID:23610167

  4. Outbreaks by canopy-feeding geometrid moth cause state-dependent shifts in understorey plant communities.

    PubMed

    Karlsen, Stein Rune; Jepsen, Jane Uhd; Odland, Arvid; Ims, Rolf Anker; Elvebakk, Arve

    2013-11-01

    The increased spread of insect outbreaks is among the most severe impacts of climate warming predicted for northern boreal forest ecosystems. Compound disturbances by insect herbivores can cause sharp transitions between vegetation states with implications for ecosystem productivity and climate feedbacks. By analysing vegetation plots prior to and immediately after a severe and widespread outbreak by geometrid moths in the birch forest-tundra ecotone, we document a shift in forest understorey community composition in response to the moth outbreak. Prior to the moth outbreak, the plots divided into two oligotrophic and one eutrophic plant community. The moth outbreak caused a vegetation state shift in the two oligotrophic communities, but only minor changes in the eutrophic community. In the spatially most widespread communities, oligotrophic dwarf shrub birch forest, dominance by the allelopathic dwarf shrub Empetrum nigrum ssp. hermaphroditum, was effectively broken and replaced by a community dominated by the graminoid Avenella flexuosa, in a manner qualitatively similar to the effect of wild fires in E. nigrum communities in coniferous boreal forest further south. As dominance by E. nigrum is associated with retrogressive succession the observed vegetation state shift has widespread implications for ecosystem productivity on a regional scale. Our findings reveal that the impact of moth outbreaks on the northern boreal birch forest system is highly initial-state dependent, and that the widespread oligotrophic communities have a low resistance to such disturbances. This provides a case for the notion that climate impacts on arctic and northern boreal vegetation may take place most abruptly when conveyed by changed dynamics of irruptive herbivores. PMID:23568711

  5. Community-level impacts of white-tailed deer on understorey plants in North American forests: a meta-analysis

    PubMed Central

    Habeck, Christopher W.; Schultz, Alexis K.

    2015-01-01

    better access to existing and future data. Ultimately, we show that white-tailed deer have strongly negative impacts on forest understorey plant communities in North America, but these impacts are not ubiquitous for all components of the plant community. PMID:26487676

  6. Contrasting patterns of gene flow between sister plant species in the understorey of African moist forests - the case of sympatric and parapatric Marantaceae species.

    PubMed

    Ley, A C; Hardy, O J

    2014-08-01

    Gene flow within and between species is a fundamental process shaping the evolutionary history of taxa. However, the extent of hybridization and reinforcement is little documented in the tropics. Here we explore the pattern of gene flow between three sister species from the herbaceous genus Marantochloa (Marantaceae), sympatrically distributed in the understorey of the African rainforest, using data from the chloroplast and nuclear genomes (DNA sequences and AFLP). We found highly contrasting patterns: while there was no evidence of gene flow between M. congensis and M. monophylla, species identity between M. monophylla and M. incertifolia was maintained despite considerable gene flow. We hypothesize that M. incertifolia originated from an ancient hybridization event between M. congensis and M. monophylla, considering the current absence of hybridization between the two assumed parent species, the rare presence of shared haplotypes between all three species and the high percentage of haplotypes shared by M. incertifolia with each of the two parent species. This example is contrasted with two parapatrically distributed species from the same family in the genus Haumania forming a hybrid zone restricted to the area of overlap. This work illustrates the diversity of speciation/introgression patterns that can potentially occur in the flora of tropical Africa. PMID:24792083

  7. Experimental defaunation of terrestrial mammalian herbivores alters tropical rainforest understorey diversity

    PubMed Central

    Camargo-Sanabria, Angela A.; Mendoza, Eduardo; Guevara, Roger; Martínez-Ramos, Miguel; Dirzo, Rodolfo

    2015-01-01

    It has been suggested that tropical defaunation may unleash community-wide cascading effects, leading to reductions in plant diversity. However, experimental evidence establishing cause–effect relationships thereof is poor. Through a 5 year exclosure experiment, we tested the hypothesis that mammalian defaunation affects tree seedling/sapling community dynamics leading to reductions in understorey plant diversity. We established plot triplets (n = 25) representing three defaunation contexts: terrestrial-mammal exclosure (TE), medium/large mammal exclosure (PE) and open access controls (C). Seedlings/saplings 30–100 cm tall were marked and identified within each of these plots and re-censused three times to record survival and recruitment. In the periods 2010–2011 and 2011–2013, survival was greater in PE than in C plots and recruitment was higher in TE plots than in C plots. Overall, seedling density increased by 61% in TE plots and 23% in PE plots, whereas it decreased by 5% in C plots. Common species highly consumed by mammals (e.g. Brosimum alicastrum and Ampelocera hottlei) increased in their abundance in TE plots. Rarefaction curves showed that species diversity decreased in TE plots from 2008 to 2013, whereas it remained similar for C plots. Given the prevalence of tropical defaunation, we posit this is an anthropogenic effect threatening the maintenance of tropical forest diversity. PMID:25540281

  8. Experimental defaunation of terrestrial mammalian herbivores alters tropical rainforest understorey diversity.

    PubMed

    Camargo-Sanabria, Angela A; Mendoza, Eduardo; Guevara, Roger; Martínez-Ramos, Miguel; Dirzo, Rodolfo

    2015-02-01

    It has been suggested that tropical defaunation may unleash community-wide cascading effects, leading to reductions in plant diversity. However, experimental evidence establishing cause-effect relationships thereof is poor. Through a 5 year exclosure experiment, we tested the hypothesis that mammalian defaunation affects tree seedling/sapling community dynamics leading to reductions in understorey plant diversity. We established plot triplets (n = 25) representing three defaunation contexts: terrestrial-mammal exclosure (TE), medium/large mammal exclosure (PE) and open access controls (C). Seedlings/saplings 30-100 cm tall were marked and identified within each of these plots and re-censused three times to record survival and recruitment. In the periods 2010-2011 and 2011-2013, survival was greater in PE than in C plots and recruitment was higher in TE plots than in C plots. Overall, seedling density increased by 61% in TE plots and 23% in PE plots, whereas it decreased by 5% in C plots. Common species highly consumed by mammals (e.g. Brosimum alicastrum and Ampelocera hottlei) increased in their abundance in TE plots. Rarefaction curves showed that species diversity decreased in TE plots from 2008 to 2013, whereas it remained similar for C plots. Given the prevalence of tropical defaunation, we posit this is an anthropogenic effect threatening the maintenance of tropical forest diversity. PMID:25540281

  9. Climate-change impacts on understorey bamboo species and giant pandas in China's Qinling Mountains

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tuanmu, Mao-Ning; Viña, Andrés; Winkler, Julie A.; Li, Yu; Xu, Weihua; Ouyang, Zhiyun; Liu, Jianguo

    2013-03-01

    Climate change is threatening global ecosystems through its impact on the survival of individual species and their ecological functions. Despite the important role of understorey plants in forest ecosystems, climate impact assessments on understorey plants and their role in supporting wildlife habitat are scarce in the literature. Here we assess climate-change impacts on understorey bamboo species with an emphasis on their ecological function as a food resource for endangered giant pandas (Ailuropoda melanoleuca). An ensemble of bamboo distribution projections associated with multiple climate-change projections and bamboo dispersal scenarios indicates a substantial reduction in the distributional ranges of three dominant bamboo species in the Qinling Mountains, China during the twenty-first century. As these three species comprise almost the entire diet of the panda population in the region, the projected changes in bamboo distribution suggest a potential shortage of food for this population, unless alternative food sources become available. Although the projections were developed under unavoidable simplifying assumptions and uncertainties, they indicate potential challenges for panda conservation and underscore the importance of incorporating interspecific interactions into climate-change impact assessments and associated conservation planning.

  10. Species-specific adaptations explain resilience of herbaceous understorey to increased precipitation variability in a Mediterranean oak woodland.

    PubMed

    Jongen, Marjan; Hellmann, Christine; Unger, Stephan

    2015-10-01

    To date, the implications of the predicted greater intra-annual variability and extremes in precipitation on ecosystem functioning have received little attention. This study presents results on leaf-level physiological responses of five species covering the functional groups grasses, forbs, and legumes in the understorey of a Mediterranean oak woodland, with increasing precipitation variability, without altering total annual precipitation inputs. Although extending the dry period between precipitation events from 3 to 6 weeks led to increased soil moisture deficit, overall treatment effects on photosynthetic performance were not observed in the studied species. This resilience to prolonged water stress was explained by different physiological and morphological strategies to withstand periods below the wilting point, that is, isohydric behavior in Agrostis, Rumex, and Tuberaria, leaf succulence in Rumex, and taproots in Tolpis. In addition, quick recovery upon irrigation events and species-specific adaptations of water-use efficiency with longer dry periods and larger precipitation events contributed to the observed resilience in productivity of the annual plant community. Although none of the species exhibited a change in cover with increasing precipitation variability, leaf physiology of the legume Ornithopus exhibited signs of sensitivity to moisture deficit, which may have implications for the agricultural practice of seeding legume-rich mixtures in Mediterranean grassland-type systems. This highlights the need for long-term precipitation manipulation experiments to capture possible directional changes in species composition and seed bank development, which can subsequently affect ecosystem state and functioning. PMID:26664676

  11. Ecophysiological roles of abaxial anthocyanins in a perennial understorey herb from temperate deciduous forests

    PubMed Central

    Fernández-Marín, Beatriz; Esteban, Raquel; Míguez, Fátima; Artetxe, Unai; Castañeda, Verónica; Pintó-Marijuan, Marta; Becerril, José María; García-Plazaola, José Ignacio

    2015-01-01

    Accumulation of abaxial anthocyanins is an intriguing leaf trait particularly common among deeply shaded understorey plants of tropical and temperate forests whose ecological significance is still not properly understood. To shed light on it, possible ecophysiological roles of abaxial anthocyanins were tested in the perennial understorey herb of temperate deciduous forests Saxifraga hirsuta, chosen as a model species due to the coexistence of green and anthocyanic leaves and the presence of an easily removable lower anthocyanic epidermis. Anthocyanins accumulated during autumn, which temporally matched the overstorey leaf fall. Patterns of development of abaxial anthocyanins and direct measurements of photochemical efficiency under monochromatic light were not consistent with a photoprotective hypothesis. Enhancement of light capture also seemed unlikely since the back-scattering of red light towards the lower mesophyll was negligible. Seed germination was similar under acyanic and anthocyanic leaves. A relevant consequence of abaxial anthocyanins was the dramatic reduction of light transmission through the leaf. The dark environment generated underneath the Saxifraga canopy was enhanced by the horizontal repositioning of leaves, which occurs in parallel with reddening. This might play a role in biotic interactions by inhibiting vital processes of competitors, which may be of especial importance in spring before the overstorey leaves sprout. PMID:25922298

  12. Primary forest dynamics in lowland dipterocarp forest at Danum Valley, Sabah, Malaysia, and the role of the understorey.

    PubMed Central

    Newbery, D M; Kennedy, D N; Petol, G H; Madani, L; Ridsdale, C E

    1999-01-01

    Changes in species composition in two 4-ha plots of lowland dipterocarp rainforest at Danum, Sabah, were measured over ten years (1986-1996) for trees > or = 10 cm girth at breast height (gbh). Each included a lower-slope to ridge gradient. The period lay between two drought events of moderate intensity but the forest showed no large lasting responses, suggesting that its species were well adapted to this regime. Mortality and recruitment rates were not unusual in global or regional comparisons. The forest continued to aggrade from its relatively (for Sabah) low basal area in 1986 and, together with the very open upper canopy structure and an abundance of lianas, this suggests a forest in a late stage of recovery from a major disturbance, yet one continually affected by smaller recent setbacks. Mortality and recruitment rates were not related to population size in 1986, but across subplots recruitment was positively correlated with the density and basal area of small trees (10-< 50cm gbh) forming the dense understorey. Neither rate was related to topography. While species with larger mean gbh had greater relative growth rates (rgr) than smaller ones, subplot mean recruitment rates were correlated with rgr among small trees. Separating understorey species (typically the Euphorbiaceae) from the overstorey (Dipterocarpaceae) showed marked differences in change in mortality with increasing gbh: in the former it increased, in the latter it decreased. Forest processes are centred on this understorey quasi-stratum. The two replicate plots showed a high correspondence in the mortality, recruitment, population changes and growth rates of small trees for the 49 most abundant species in common to both. Overstorey species had higher rgrs than understorey ones, but both showed considerable ranges in mortality and recruitment rates. The supposed trade-off in traits, viz slower rgr, shade tolerance and lower population turnover in the understorey group versus faster potential

  13. Comparative dynamics of small mammal populations in treefall gaps and surrounding understorey within Amazonian rainforest

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Beck, H.; Gaines, M.S.; Hines, J.E.; Nichols, J.D.

    2004-01-01

    Variation in food resource availability can have profound effects on habitat selection and dynamics of populations. Previous studies reported higher food resource availability and fruit removal in treefall gaps than in the understorey. Therefore, gaps have been considered 'keystone habitat' for Neotropical frugivore birds. Here we test if this prediction would also hold for terrestrial small mammals. In the Amazon, we quantified food resource availability in eleven treefall gaps and paired understorey habitats and used feeding experiments to test if two common terrestrial rodents (Oryzomys megacephalus and Proechimys spp.) would perceive differences between habitats. We live-trapped small mammals in eleven gaps and understorey sites for two years, and compared abundance, fitness components (survival and per capita recruitment) and dispersal of these two rodent species across gaps and understorey and seasons (rainy and dry). Our data indicated no differences in resource availability and consumption rate between habitats. Treefall gaps may represent a sink habitat for Oryzomys where individuals had lower fitness, apparently because of habitat-specific ant predation on early life stages, than in the understorey, the source habitat. Conversely, gaps may be source habitat for Proechimys where individuals had higher fitness, than in the understorey, the sink habitat. Our results suggest the presence of source-sink dynamics in a tropical gap-understorey landscape, where two rodent species perceive habitats differently. This may be a mechanism for their coexistence in a heterogeneous and species-diverse system.

  14. Patterns of association between canopy-morphology and understorey assemblages across temperate Australia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fowler-Walker, Meegan J.; Gillanders, Bronwyn M.; Connell, Sean D.; Irving, Andrew D.

    2005-04-01

    Patterns of association between canopy and understorey vegetation have been described over 1000s of km according to the presence and absence of algal canopies and the different types of canopies. However, the degree to which morphological variation of the canopy is correlated with patterns in the understorey algal assemblage is unknown. We tested the hypothesis that variation in the morphology of Ecklonia radiata, growing in monospecific canopies, is associated with variation in the structure of understorey assemblages at regional scales across temperate Australia. We found that the morphology of kelp did correlate with the structure of understorey assemblages, over broad spatial scales, particularly that of surface area/volume ratio and measures of stipe width. These canopy-understorey associations revealed two 'types' of kelp forest; one characteristic of Western and South Australia and the other of Eastern Australia. We suggest that future research on causal relationships between morphology and understorey assemblages of algae consider the potential importance that morphology may have on mechanisms such as light penetration and physical abrasion by fronds. Whilst correlations between the understorey and morphology do not demonstrate causality, the realisation that these associations occur over broad spatial scales and that southern and eastern Australia differ in their 'type' of kelp forest, at the very least, contributes to a more broadly based understanding of a major ecological pattern across the world's most extensive west-east coastline.

  15. Myrmecophilic food body production in the understorey tree, Ryparosa kurrangii (Achariaceae), a rare Australian rainforest taxon.

    PubMed

    Webber, Bruce L; Abaloz, Bruce A; Woodrow, Ian E

    2007-01-01

    Plant food bodies are rarely observed in the field, because of continual harvesting, and are often first documented on isolated glasshouse plants. Little is known about the genus Ryparosa (Achariaceae), and the appearance of outgrowths on leaves and stems of glasshouse-raised R. kurrangii seedlings suggested that the species may produce food bodies. Detailed macroimaging and histological techniques were used to characterize chemomorphological variation in food body material gathered from glasshouse plants. Two distinct types of food body were observed. Multicellular pearl bodies derived from epidermal and mesophyll tissue were produced on young leaves and stems, and contained lipids and glycogen-like carbohydrates. A unique form of lipid-rich multicellular food body that 'opens' during development was found exclusively on mature plant tissue. A filament network was associated with food body lipid droplets. This is the first detailed documentation of food body production in an understorey genus adapted to low light conditions. We suggest that the distinctive spatial deployment of Ryparosa food rewards, and the ants attracted to them, may be invaluable for keeping long-lived leaves free from epiphyllous communities. PMID:17204073

  16. Between-Population Outbreeding Affects Plant Defence

    PubMed Central

    Leimu, Roosa; Fischer, Markus

    2010-01-01

    Between-population crosses may replenish genetic variation of populations, but may also result in outbreeding depression. Apart from direct effects on plant fitness, these outbreeding effects can also alter plant-herbivore interactions by influencing plant tolerance and resistance to herbivory. We investigated effects of experimental within- and between-population outbreeding on herbivore resistance, tolerance and plant fitness using plants from 13 to 19 Lychnis flos-cuculi populations. We found no evidence for outbreeding depression in resistance reflected by the amount of leaf area consumed. However, herbivore performance was greater when fed on plants from between-population compared to within-population crosses. This can reflect outbreeding depression in resistance and/or outbreeding effects on plant quality for the herbivores. The effects of type of cross on the relationship between herbivore damage and plant fitness varied among populations. This demonstrates how between-population outbreeding effects on tolerance range from outbreeding depression to outbreeding benefits among plant populations. Finally, herbivore damage strengthened the observed outbreeding effects on plant fitness in several populations. These results raise novel considerations on the impact of outbreeding on the joint evolution of resistance and tolerance, and on the evolution of multiple defence strategies. PMID:20838662

  17. Understorey fire frequency and the fate of burned forests in southern Amazonia

    PubMed Central

    Morton, D. C.; Le Page, Y.; DeFries, R.; Collatz, G. J.; Hurtt, G. C.

    2013-01-01

    Recent drought events underscore the vulnerability of Amazon forests to understorey fires. The long-term impact of fires on biodiversity and forest carbon stocks depends on the frequency of fire damages and deforestation rates of burned forests. Here, we characterized the spatial and temporal dynamics of understorey fires (1999–2010) and deforestation (2001–2010) in southern Amazonia using new satellite-based estimates of annual fire activity (greater than 50 ha) and deforestation (greater than 10 ha). Understorey forest fires burned more than 85 500 km2 between 1999 and 2010 (2.8% of all forests). Forests that burned more than once accounted for 16 per cent of all understorey fires. Repeated fire activity was concentrated in Mato Grosso and eastern Pará, whereas single fires were widespread across the arc of deforestation. Routine fire activity in Mato Grosso coincided with annual periods of low night-time relative humidity, suggesting a strong climate control on both single and repeated fires. Understorey fires occurred in regions with active deforestation, yet the interannual variability of fire and deforestation were uncorrelated, and only 2.6 per cent of forests that burned between 1999 and 2008 were deforested for agricultural use by 2010. Evidence from the past decade suggests that future projections of frontier landscapes in Amazonia should separately consider economic drivers to project future deforestation and climate to project fire risk. PMID:23610169

  18. Understorey fire frequency and the fate of burned forests in southern Amazonia.

    PubMed

    Morton, D C; Le Page, Y; DeFries, R; Collatz, G J; Hurtt, G C

    2013-06-01

    Recent drought events underscore the vulnerability of Amazon forests to understorey fires. The long-term impact of fires on biodiversity and forest carbon stocks depends on the frequency of fire damages and deforestation rates of burned forests. Here, we characterized the spatial and temporal dynamics of understorey fires (1999-2010) and deforestation (2001-2010) in southern Amazonia using new satellite-based estimates of annual fire activity (greater than 50 ha) and deforestation (greater than 10 ha). Understorey forest fires burned more than 85 500 km(2) between 1999 and 2010 (2.8% of all forests). Forests that burned more than once accounted for 16 per cent of all understorey fires. Repeated fire activity was concentrated in Mato Grosso and eastern Pará, whereas single fires were widespread across the arc of deforestation. Routine fire activity in Mato Grosso coincided with annual periods of low night-time relative humidity, suggesting a strong climate control on both single and repeated fires. Understorey fires occurred in regions with active deforestation, yet the interannual variability of fire and deforestation were uncorrelated, and only 2.6 per cent of forests that burned between 1999 and 2008 were deforested for agricultural use by 2010. Evidence from the past decade suggests that future projections of frontier landscapes in Amazonia should separately consider economic drivers to project future deforestation and climate to project fire risk. PMID:23610169

  19. Herbicide drift affects plant and arthropod communities

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Field edges, old fields, and other semi-natural habitats in agricultural landscapes support diverse plant communities that help sustain pollinators, predators, and other beneficial arthropods. These plant and arthropod communities may be at persistent ecotoxicological risk from herbicides applied to...

  20. Plant Hormones: How They Affect Root Formation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reinhard, Diana Hereda

    This science study aid, produced by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, includes a series of plant rooting activities for secondary science classes. The material in the pamphlet is written for students and includes background information on plant hormones, a vocabulary list, and five learning activities. Objectives, needed materials, and…

  1. Osmolyte cooperation affects turgor dynamics in plants.

    PubMed

    Argiolas, Alfredo; Puleo, Gian Luigi; Sinibaldi, Edoardo; Mazzolai, Barbara

    2016-01-01

    Scientists have identified turgor-based actuation as a fundamental mechanism in plant movements. Plant cell turgor is generated by water influx due to the osmolyte concentration gradient through the cell wall and the plasma membrane behaving as an osmotic barrier. Previous studies have focused on turgor modulation with respect to potassium chloride (KCl) concentration changes, although KCl is not efficiently retained in the cell, and many other compounds, including L-glutamine (L-Gln) and D-glucose (D-Glc), are present in the cytosol. In fact, the contributions of other osmolytes to turgor dynamics remain to be elucidated. Here, we show the association of osmolytes and their consequent cooperative effects on the time-dependent turgor profile generated in a model cytosol consisting of KCl, D-Glc and L-Gln at experimentally measured plant motor/generic cell concentrations and at modified concentrations. We demonstrate the influence and association of the osmolytes using osmometry and NMR measurements. We also show, using a plant cell-inspired device we previously developed, that osmolyte complexes, rather than single osmolytes, permit to obtain higher turgor required by plant movements. We provide quantitative cues for deeper investigations of osmolyte transport for plant movement, and reveal the possibility of developing osmotic actuators exploiting a dynamically varying concentration of osmolytes. PMID:27445173

  2. Osmolyte cooperation affects turgor dynamics in plants

    PubMed Central

    Argiolas, Alfredo; Puleo, Gian Luigi; Sinibaldi, Edoardo; Mazzolai, Barbara

    2016-01-01

    Scientists have identified turgor-based actuation as a fundamental mechanism in plant movements. Plant cell turgor is generated by water influx due to the osmolyte concentration gradient through the cell wall and the plasma membrane behaving as an osmotic barrier. Previous studies have focused on turgor modulation with respect to potassium chloride (KCl) concentration changes, although KCl is not efficiently retained in the cell, and many other compounds, including L-glutamine (L-Gln) and D-glucose (D-Glc), are present in the cytosol. In fact, the contributions of other osmolytes to turgor dynamics remain to be elucidated. Here, we show the association of osmolytes and their consequent cooperative effects on the time-dependent turgor profile generated in a model cytosol consisting of KCl, D-Glc and L-Gln at experimentally measured plant motor/generic cell concentrations and at modified concentrations. We demonstrate the influence and association of the osmolytes using osmometry and NMR measurements. We also show, using a plant cell-inspired device we previously developed, that osmolyte complexes, rather than single osmolytes, permit to obtain higher turgor required by plant movements. We provide quantitative cues for deeper investigations of osmolyte transport for plant movement, and reveal the possibility of developing osmotic actuators exploiting a dynamically varying concentration of osmolytes. PMID:27445173

  3. Osmolyte cooperation affects turgor dynamics in plants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Argiolas, Alfredo; Puleo, Gian Luigi; Sinibaldi, Edoardo; Mazzolai, Barbara

    2016-07-01

    Scientists have identified turgor-based actuation as a fundamental mechanism in plant movements. Plant cell turgor is generated by water influx due to the osmolyte concentration gradient through the cell wall and the plasma membrane behaving as an osmotic barrier. Previous studies have focused on turgor modulation with respect to potassium chloride (KCl) concentration changes, although KCl is not efficiently retained in the cell, and many other compounds, including L-glutamine (L-Gln) and D-glucose (D-Glc), are present in the cytosol. In fact, the contributions of other osmolytes to turgor dynamics remain to be elucidated. Here, we show the association of osmolytes and their consequent cooperative effects on the time-dependent turgor profile generated in a model cytosol consisting of KCl, D-Glc and L-Gln at experimentally measured plant motor/generic cell concentrations and at modified concentrations. We demonstrate the influence and association of the osmolytes using osmometry and NMR measurements. We also show, using a plant cell-inspired device we previously developed, that osmolyte complexes, rather than single osmolytes, permit to obtain higher turgor required by plant movements. We provide quantitative cues for deeper investigations of osmolyte transport for plant movement, and reveal the possibility of developing osmotic actuators exploiting a dynamically varying concentration of osmolytes.

  4. Agroforestry planting design affects loblolly pine growth

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The effect of plantation design on resource utilization has not been adequately investigated in agroforestry plantations. An experiment was conducted near Booneville, AR on a silt loam soil with a fragipan. Loblolly pine trees were planted in 1994 in an east-west row orientation in three designs: ...

  5. Do transgenic plants affect rhizobacteria populations?

    PubMed Central

    Filion, Martin

    2008-01-01

    Summary Plant genetic manipulation has led to the development of genetically modified plants (GMPs) expressing various traits. Since their first commercial use in 1996, GMPs have been increasingly used, reaching a global cultivating production area of 114.3 million hectares in 2007. The rapid development of agricultural biotechnology and release of GMPs have provided many agronomic and economic benefits, but has also raised concerns over the potential impact these plants might have on the environment. Among these environmental concerns, the unintentional impact that GMPs might have on soil‐associated microbes, especially rhizosphere‐inhabiting bacteria or rhizobacteria, represents one of the least studied and understood areas. As rhizobacteria are responsible for numerous key functions including nutrient cycling and decomposition, they have been defined as good indicator organisms to assess the general impact that GMPs might have on the soil environment. This minireview summarizes the results of various experiments that have been conducted to date on the impact of GMPs on rhizobacteria. Both biological and technical parameters are discussed and an attempt is made to determine if specific rhizobacterial responses exist for the different categories of GMPs developed to date. PMID:21261867

  6. Spatial dynamics of understorey insectivorous birds and arthropods in a southeastern Brazilian Atlantic woodlot.

    PubMed

    Manhães, M A; Dias, M M

    2011-02-01

    Spatial distribution and spatial relationships in capture rates of understorey insectivorous birds and density of arthropods were investigated in a patch of upper montane rain forest in Minas Gerais state, southeastern Brazil, from January to December 2004. The composition of the arthropod fauna collected was similar to that reported for other tropical forests, with predominance of Araneae, Coleoptera, Hymenoptera and Hemiptera non-Heteroptera. A total of 26 bird species were captured, among which the more common were Dysithamnus mentalis, Conopophaga lineata, Platyrinchus mystaceus, Basileuterus culicivorus and Sclerurus scansor. Variation in the bird capture rates among sampling net lines were not correlated with arthropod density. Rather, individual analyses of some bird species suggest that spatial distribution of understorey insectivorous birds is better explained by habitat type. PMID:21437393

  7. Corridors affect plants, animals, and their interactions in fragmented landscapes.

    SciTech Connect

    Tewksbury, Joshua, J.; Levey, Douglas, J.; Haddad, Nick, M.; Sargent, Sarah; Orrock, John, L.; Weldon, Aimee; Danielson, Brent, J.; Brinkerhoff, Jory; Damschen, Ellen, I.; Townsend, Patricia

    2002-10-01

    Tewksbury, J.J., D.J. Levey, N.M. Haddad, S. Sargent, J.L. Orrock, A. Weldon, B.J. Danielson, J. Brinkerhoff, E.I. Damschen, and P. Townsend. 2002. Corridors affect plants, animals, and their interactions in fragmented landscapes. PNAS 99(20):12923-12926. Among the most popular strategies for maintaining populations of both plants and animals in fragmented landscapes is to connect isolated patches with thin strips of habitat, called corridors. Corridors are thought to increase the exchange of individuals between habitat patches, promoting genetic exchange and reducing population fluctuations. Empirical studies addressing the effects of corridors have either been small in scale or have ignored confounding effects of increased habitat area created by the presence of a corridor. These methodological difficulties, coupled with a paucity of studies examining the effects of corridors on plants and plant-animal interactions, have sparked debate over the purported value of corridors in conservation planning. We report results of a large-scale experiment that directly address this debate. We demonstrate that corridors not only increase the exchange of animals between patches, but also facilitate two key plant-animal interactions: pollination and seed dispersal. Our results show that the beneficial effects of corridors extend beyond the area they add, and suggest that increased plant and animal movement through corridors will have positive impacts on plant populations and community interactions in fragmented landscapes.

  8. Optical effects of abaxial anthocyanin on absorption of red wavelengths by understorey species: revisiting the back-scatter hypothesis

    PubMed Central

    Hughes, Nicole M.; Vogelmann, Thomas C.; Smith, William K.

    2008-01-01

    A red/purple coloration of lower (abaxial) leaf surfaces is commonly observed in deeply-shaded understorey plants, especially in the tropics. However, the functional significance of red abaxial coloration, including its role in photosynthetic adaptation, remains unclear. The objective of this study was to test the back-scatter hypothesis for abaxial leaf coloration, which posits that red pigments internally reflect/scatter red light transmitted by the upper leaf surface back into the mesophyll, thereby enhancing photon capture in light-limited environments. Abaxially red/non-red variegated leaves of Begonia heracleifolia (Cham. & Schltdl.) were used to compare reflectance spectra and chlorophyll fluorescence profiles of abaxially anthocyanic (red) and acyanic (non-red) tissues under red light. Photosynthetic gas exchange in response to red light was also compared for abaxially red/non-red leaf sections. The results did not support a back-scattering function, as anthocyanic leaf surfaces were not more reflective of red light than acyanic surfaces. Anthocyanic tissues also did not exhibit any increases in the mesophyll absorbance of red light, or increased photosynthetic gas exchange under red light at any intensity, relative to acyanic tissues. These results suggest that abaxial anthocyanins do not significantly enhance the absorption of red light in the species tested, and alternative functions are discussed. PMID:18653695

  9. Plant ecology. Anthropogenic environmental changes affect ecosystem stability via biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Hautier, Yann; Tilman, David; Isbell, Forest; Seabloom, Eric W; Borer, Elizabeth T; Reich, Peter B

    2015-04-17

    Human-driven environmental changes may simultaneously affect the biodiversity, productivity, and stability of Earth's ecosystems, but there is no consensus on the causal relationships linking these variables. Data from 12 multiyear experiments that manipulate important anthropogenic drivers, including plant diversity, nitrogen, carbon dioxide, fire, herbivory, and water, show that each driver influences ecosystem productivity. However, the stability of ecosystem productivity is only changed by those drivers that alter biodiversity, with a given decrease in plant species numbers leading to a quantitatively similar decrease in ecosystem stability regardless of which driver caused the biodiversity loss. These results suggest that changes in biodiversity caused by drivers of environmental change may be a major factor determining how global environmental changes affect ecosystem stability. PMID:25883357

  10. The response of forest plant regeneration to temperature variation along a latitudinal gradient

    PubMed Central

    De Frenne, Pieter; Graae, Bente J.; Brunet, Jörg; Shevtsova, Anna; De Schrijver, An; Chabrerie, Olivier; Cousins, Sara A. O.; Decocq, Guillaume; Diekmann, Martin; Hermy, Martin; Heinken, Thilo; Kolb, Annette; Nilsson, Christer; Stanton, Sharon; Verheyen, Kris

    2012-01-01

    Background and Aims The response of forest herb regeneration from seed to temperature variations across latitudes was experimentally assessed in order to forecast the likely response of understorey community dynamics to climate warming. Methods Seeds of two characteristic forest plants (Anemone nemorosa and Milium effusum) were collected in natural populations along a latitudinal gradient from northern France to northern Sweden and exposed to three temperature regimes in growth chambers (first experiment). To test the importance of local adaptation, reciprocal transplants were also made of adult individuals that originated from the same populations in three common gardens located in southern, central and northern sites along the same gradient, and the resulting seeds were germinated (second experiment). Seedling establishment was quantified by measuring the timing and percentage of seedling emergence, and seedling biomass in both experiments. Key Results Spring warming increased emergence rates and seedling growth in the early-flowering forb A. nemorosa. Seedlings of the summer-flowering grass M. effusum originating from northern populations responded more strongly in terms of biomass growth to temperature than southern populations. The above-ground biomass of the seedlings of both species decreased with increasing latitude of origin, irrespective of whether seeds were collected from natural populations or from the common gardens. The emergence percentage decreased with increasing home-away distance in seeds from the transplant experiment, suggesting that the maternal plants were locally adapted. Conclusions Decreasing seedling emergence and growth were found from the centre to the northern edge of the distribution range for both species. Stronger responses to temperature variation in seedling growth of the grass M. effusum in the north may offer a way to cope with environmental change. The results further suggest that climate warming might differentially affect

  11. Soil microbes and plant invasions—how soil-borne pathogens regulate plant populations and affect plant invasions

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Exotic plant invaders are a major global threat to biodiversity and ecosystem function. Here I present multiple lines of evidence suggesting that soil microbial communities affect the population growth rates of Prunus serotina in its native range and affect its invasiveness abroad. Research often ...

  12. Microhabitat of small mammals at ground and understorey levels in a deciduous, southern Atlantic forest.

    PubMed

    Melo, Geruza L; Miotto, Barbara; Peres, Brisa; Cáceres, Nilton C

    2013-01-01

    Each animal species selects specific microhabitats for protection, foraging, or micro-climate. To understand the distribution patterns of small mammals on the ground and in the understorey, we investigated the use of microhabitats by small mammals in a deciduous forest of southern Brazil. Ten trap stations with seven capture points were used to sample the following microhabitats: liana, fallen log, ground litter, terrestrial ferns, simple-trunk tree, forked tree, and Piper sp. shrubs. Seven field phases were conducted, each for eight consecutive days, from September 2006 through January 2008. Four species of rodents (Akodon montensis, Sooretamys angouya, Oligoryzomys nigripes and Mus musculus) and two species of marsupials (Didelphis albiventris and Gracilinanus microtarsus) were captured. Captured species presented significant differences on their microhabitat use (ANOVA, p = 0.003), particularly between ground and understorey sites. Akodon montensis selected positively terrestrial ferns and trunks, S. angouya selected lianas, D. albiventris selected fallen trunks and Piper sp., and G. microtarsus choose tree trunks and lianas. We demonstrated that the local small-mammal assemblage does select microhabitats, with different types of associations between species and habitats. Besides, there is a strong evidence of habitat selection in order to diminish predation. PMID:23828340

  13. Ecophysiological and foliar nitrogen concentration responses of understorey Acacia spp. and Eucalyptus sp. to prescribed burning.

    PubMed

    Ma, Ling; Rao, Xingquan; Lu, Ping; Bai, Shahla Hosseini; Xu, Zhihong; Chen, Xiaoyang; Blumfield, Timothy; Xie, Jun

    2015-07-01

    Eucalyptus spp. is a dominant tree genus in Australia and most Eucalyptus spp. are canopy dominant species. In Australian natural forests, Eucalyptus spp. commonly are associated with understorey legumes which play a crucial role for ecological restoration owing to their nitrogen (N) fixing ability for replenishing the soil N lost after frequent prescribed burning. This study aimed to explore to what extent physiological responses of these species differ 7 and 12 years after last fire. Two most common understorey Acacia spp., Acacia leiocalyx and A. disparrima, as well as one non-leguminous Eucalyptus resinifera, were studied due to their dominance in the forest. Both A. leiocalyx and A. disparrima showed higher carbon (C) assimilation capacity, maximum photosynthetic capacity, and moderate foliar C/N ratio compared with E. resinifera. A. leiocalyx showed various advantages compared to A. disparrima such as higher photosynthetic capacity, adaptation to wider light range and higher foliar total N (TNmass). A. leiocalyx also relied on N2-fixing ability for longer time compared to A. disparrima. The results suggested that the two Acacia spp. were more beneficial to C and N cycles for the post burning ecosystem than the non-N2-fixing species E. resinifera. A. leiocalyx had greater contribution to complementing soil N cycle long after burning compared to A. disparrima. PMID:25703618

  14. Chemical and Physical Environmental Conditions Underneath Mat- and Canopy-Forming Macroalgae, and Their Effects on Understorey Corals

    PubMed Central

    Hauri, Claudine; Fabricius, Katharina E.; Schaffelke, Britta; Humphrey, Craig

    2010-01-01

    Disturbed coral reefs are often dominated by dense mat- or canopy-forming assemblages of macroalgae. This study investigated how such dense macroalgal assemblages change the chemical and physical microenvironment for understorey corals, and how the altered environmental conditions affect the physiological performance of corals. Field measurements were conducted on macroalgal-dominated inshore reefs in the Great Barrier Reef in quadrats with macroalgal biomass ranging from 235 to 1029 g DW m−2 dry weight. Underneath mat-forming assemblages, the mean concentration of dissolved oxygen was reduced by 26% and irradiance by 96% compared with conditions above the mat, while concentrations of dissolved organic carbon and soluble reactive phosphorous increased by 26% and 267%, respectively. The difference was significant but less pronounced under canopy-forming assemblages. Dissolved oxygen declined and dissolved inorganic carbon and alkalinity increased with increasing algal biomass underneath mat-forming but not under canopy-forming assemblages. The responses of corals to conditions similar to those found underneath algal assemblages were investigated in an aquarium experiment. Coral nubbins of the species Acropora millepora showed reduced photosynthetic yields and increased RNA/DNA ratios when exposed to conditions simulating those underneath assemblages (pre-incubating seawater with macroalgae, and shading). The magnitude of these stress responses increased with increasing proportion of pre-incubated algal water. Our study shows that mat-forming and, to a lesser extent, canopy-forming macroalgal assemblages alter the physical and chemical microenvironment sufficiently to directly and detrimentally affect the metabolism of corals, potentially impeding reef recovery from algal to coral-dominated states after disturbance. Macroalgal dominance on coral reefs therefore simultaneously represents a consequence and cause of coral reef degradation. PMID:20856882

  15. Higher clonal integration in the facultative epiphytic fern Selliguea griffithiana growing in the forest canopy compared with the forest understorey

    PubMed Central

    Lu, Hua-Zheng; Liu, Wen-Yao; Yu, Fei-Hai; Song, Liang; Xu, Xing-Liang; Wu, Chuan-Sheng; Zheng, Yu-Long; Li, Yang-Ping; Gong, He-De; Chen, Ke; Li, Su; Chen, Xi; Qi, Jin-Hua; Lu, Shu-Gang

    2015-01-01

    Background and Aims The advantage of clonal integration (resource sharing between connected ramets of clonal plants) varies and a higher degree of integration is expected in more stressful and/or more heterogeneous habitats. Clonal facultative epiphytes occur in both forest canopies (epiphytic habitats) and forest understories (terrestrial habitats). Because environmental conditions, especially water and nutrients, are more stressful and heterogeneous in the canopy than in the understorey, this study hypothesizes that clonal integration is more important for facultative epiphytes in epiphytic habitats than in terrestrial habitats. Methods In a field experiment, an examination was made of the effects of rhizome connection (connected vs. disconnected, i.e. with vs. without clonal integration) on survival and growth of single ramets, both young and old, of the facultative epiphytic rhizomatous fern Selliguea griffithiana (Polypodiaceae) in both epiphytic and terrestrial habitats. In another field experiment, the effects of rhizome connection on performance of ramets were tested in small (10 × 10 cm2) and large (20 × 20 cm2) plots in both epiphytic and terrestrial habitats. Key Results Rhizome disconnection significantly decreased survival and growth of S. griffithiana in both experiments. The effects of rhizome disconnection on survival of single ramets and on ramet number and growth in plots were greater in epiphytic habitats than in terrestrial habitats. Conclusions Clonal integration contributes greatly to performance of facultative epiphytic ferns, and the effects were more important in forest canopies than in forest understories. The results therefore support the hypothesis that natural selection favours genotypes with a higher degree of integration in more stressful and heterogeneous environments. PMID:26050068

  16. STRESS ETHYLENE EVOLUTION: A MEASURE OF OZONE AFFECTS ON PLANTS

    EPA Science Inventory

    To determine if ethylene evolution by plants is correlated with the ozone stress, a range of plants species and cultivars was exposed to varying ozone concentrations. Following exposure, the plants were encapsulated in plastic bags and incubated for up to 22h. The stress-induced ...

  17. Affective imagery and acceptance of replacing nuclear power plants.

    PubMed

    Keller, Carmen; Visschers, Vivianne; Siegrist, Michael

    2012-03-01

    This study examined the relationship between the content of spontaneous associations with nuclear power plants and the acceptance of using new-generation nuclear power plants to replace old ones. The study also considered gender as a variable. A representative sample of the German- and French-speaking population of Switzerland (N= 1,221) was used. Log-linear models revealed significant two-way interactions between the association content and acceptance, association content and gender, and gender and acceptance. Correspondence analysis revealed that participants who were opposed to nuclear power plants mainly associated nuclear power plants with risk, negative feelings, accidents, radioactivity, waste disposal, military use, and negative consequences for health and environment; whereas participants favoring nuclear power plants mainly associated them with energy, appearance descriptions of nuclear power plants, and necessity. Thus, individuals opposing nuclear power plants had both more concrete and more diverse associations with them than people who were in favor of nuclear power plants. In addition, participants who were undecided often mentioned similar associations to those participants who were in favor. Males more often expressed associations with energy, waste disposal, and negative health effects. Females more often made associations with appearance descriptions, negative feelings, and negative environmental effects. The results further suggest that acceptance of replacing nuclear power plants was higher in the German-speaking part of the country, where all of the Swiss nuclear power plants are physically located. Practical implications for risk communication are discussed. PMID:21977961

  18. Nutrient enrichment affects the mechanical resistance of aquatic plants.

    PubMed

    Lamberti-Raverot, Barbara; Puijalon, Sara

    2012-10-01

    For many plant species, nutrient availability induces important anatomical responses, particularly the production of low-density tissues to the detriment of supporting tissues. Due to the contrasting biomechanical properties of plant tissues, these anatomical responses may induce important modifications in the biomechanical properties of plant organs. The aim of this study was to determine the effects of nutrient enrichment on the anatomical traits of two freshwater plant species and its consequences on plant biomechanical performance. Two plant species were grown under controlled conditions in low versus high nutrient levels. The anatomical and biomechanical traits of the plant stems were measured. Both species produced tissues with lower densities under nutrient-rich conditions, accompanied by modifications in the structure of the aerenchyma for one species. As expected, nutrient enrichment also led to important modifications in the biomechanical properties of the stem for both species. In particular, mechanical resistance (breaking force and strength) and stiffness of stems were significantly reduced under nutrient rich conditions. The production of weaker stem tissues as a result of nutrient enrichment may increase the risk of plants to mechanical failure, thus challenging plant maintenance in mechanically stressful or disturbed habitats. PMID:23028018

  19. Ontogeny, understorey light interception and simulated carbon gain of juvenile rainforest evergreens differing in shade tolerance

    PubMed Central

    Lusk, Christopher H.; Pérez-Millaqueo, Manuel Matías; Piper, Frida I.; Saldaña, Alfredo

    2011-01-01

    Background and Aims A long-running debate centres on whether shade tolerance of tree seedlings is mainly a function of traits maximizing net carbon gain in low light, or of traits minimizing carbon loss. To test these alternatives, leaf display, light-interception efficiency, and simulated net daily carbon gain of juvenile temperate evergreens of differing shade tolerance were measured, and how these variables are influenced by ontogeny was queried. Methods The biomass distribution of juveniles (17–740 mm tall) of seven temperate rainforest evergreens growing in low (approx. 4 %) light in the understorey of a second-growth stand was quantified. Daytime and night-time gas exchange rates of leaves were also determined, and crown architecture was recorded digitally. YPLANT was used to model light interception and carbon gain. Results An index of species shade tolerance correlated closely with photosynthetic capacities and respiration rates per unit mass of leaves, but only weakly with respiration per unit area. Accumulation of many leaf cohorts by shade-tolerant species meant that their ratios of foliage area to biomass (LAR) decreased more gradually with ontogeny than those of light-demanders, but also increased self-shading; this depressed the foliage silhouette-to-area ratio (STAR), which was used as an index of light-interception efficiency. As a result, displayed leaf area ratio (LARd = LAR × STAR) of large seedlings was not related to species shade tolerance. Self-shading also caused simulated net daily carbon assimilation rates of shade-tolerant species to decrease with ontogeny, leading to a negative correlation of shade tolerance with net daily carbon gain of large (500 mm tall) seedlings in the understorey. Conclusions The results suggest that efficiency of energy capture is not an important correlate of shade tolerance in temperate rainforest evergreens. Ontogenetic increases in self-shading largely nullify the potential carbon gain advantages expected

  20. Factors Affecting Location Decisions of Food Processing Plants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Turhan, Sule; Canan Ozbag, Basak; Cetin, Bahattin

    The main aim of this study is to examine the determinants of location choices for food processing plants using the results of 59 personal surveys. The 61.3% of the food processing plants that were interviewed are small scale plants, 9.1% are large scale plants and 29.6% are medium scale plants. Sixteen of the firms process vegetables, 12 process poultry, 12 process dairy and 9 process seafood products. Business climate factors are divided into six categories (market, infrastructure, raw material, labor, personal and environmental) and 17 specific location factors are considered. The survey responses are analyzed by types of raw materials processed and by plant size. 43.7, 55.3 and 42.2% of the respondents cited categories of Market, Raw Material and Infrastructure respectively as important, while 44.3, 50.7 and 74.4% of the respondents cited, labor, personal and environmental regulation categories of as not important. Thus survey findings indicate that plant location choices are mainly driven by market, raw material and infra structural factors. Environmental factors such as environmental regulations and permissions are relatively insignificant.

  1. Factors affecting plant growth in membrane nutrient delivery

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dreschel, T. W.; Wheeler, R. M.; Sager, J. C.; Knott, W. M.

    1990-01-01

    The development of the tubular membrane plant growth unit for the delivery of water and nutrients to roots in microgravity has recently focused on measuring the effects of changes in physical variables controlling solution availability to the plants. Significant effects of membrane pore size and the negative pressure used to contain the solution were demonstrated. Generally, wheat grew better in units with a larger pore size but equal negative pressure and in units with the same pore size but less negative pressure. Lettuce also exhibited better plant growth at less negative pressure.

  2. Plant toxins that affect nicotinic acetylcholine receptors: A review

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Plants produce wide variety of chemical compounds termed secondary metabolites that are not involved in basic metabolism, photosynthesis or reproduction. These compounds are used as flavors, fragrances, insecticides, dyes, hallucinogens, nutritional supplements, poisons, and pharmaceutical agents. ...

  3. A novel family of small proteins that affect plant development

    SciTech Connect

    John Charles Walker

    2011-04-29

    The DVL genes represent a new group of plant proteins that influence plant growth and development. Overexpression of DVL1, and other members of the DVL family, causes striking phenotypic changes. The DVL proteins share sequence homology in their C-terminal half. Point mutations in the C-terminal domain show it is necessary and deletion studies demonstrate the C-terminal domain is sufficient to confer the overexpression phenotypes. The phenotypes observed, and the conservation of the protein sequence in the plant kingdom, does suggest the DVL proteins have a role in modulating plant growth and development. Our working hypothesis is the DVL proteins function as regulators of cellular signaling pathways that control growth and development.

  4. Fuel breaks affect nonnative species abundance in Californian plant communities

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Merriam, K.E.; Keeley, J.E.; Beyers, J.L.

    2006-01-01

    We evaluated the abundance of nonnative plants on fuel breaks and in adjacent untreated areas to determine if fuel treatments promote the invasion of nonnative plant species. Understanding the relationship between fuel treatments and nonnative plants is becoming increasingly important as federal and state agencies are currently implementing large fuel treatment programs throughout the United States to reduce the threat of wildland fire. Our study included 24 fuel breaks located across the State of California. We found that nonnative plant abundance was over 200% higher on fuel breaks than in adjacent wildland areas. Relative nonnative cover was greater on fuel breaks constructed by bulldozers (28%) than on fuel breaks constructed by other methods (7%). Canopy cover, litter cover, and duff depth also were significantly lower on fuel breaks constructed by bulldozers, and these fuel breaks had significantly more exposed bare ground than other types of fuel breaks. There was a significant decline in relative nonnative cover with increasing distance from the fuel break, particularly in areas that had experienced more numerous fires during the past 50 years, and in areas that had been grazed. These data suggest that fuel breaks could provide establishment sites for nonnative plants, and that nonnatives may invade surrounding areas, especially after disturbances such as fire or grazing. Fuel break construction and maintenance methods that leave some overstory canopy and minimize exposure of bare ground may be less likely to promote nonnative plants. ?? 2006 by the Ecological Society of America.

  5. Rhizosphere microbiome assemblage is affected by plant development

    PubMed Central

    Chaparro, Jacqueline M; Badri, Dayakar V; Vivanco, Jorge M

    2014-01-01

    There is a concerted understanding of the ability of root exudates to influence the structure of rhizosphere microbial communities. However, our knowledge of the connection between plant development, root exudation and microbiome assemblage is limited. Here, we analyzed the structure of the rhizospheric bacterial community associated with Arabidopsis at four time points corresponding to distinct stages of plant development: seedling, vegetative, bolting and flowering. Overall, there were no significant differences in bacterial community structure, but we observed that the microbial community at the seedling stage was distinct from the other developmental time points. At a closer level, phylum such as Acidobacteria, Actinobacteria, Bacteroidetes, Cyanobacteria and specific genera within those phyla followed distinct patterns associated with plant development and root exudation. These results suggested that the plant can select a subset of microbes at different stages of development, presumably for specific functions. Accordingly, metatranscriptomics analysis of the rhizosphere microbiome revealed that 81 unique transcripts were significantly (P<0.05) expressed at different stages of plant development. For instance, genes involved in streptomycin synthesis were significantly induced at bolting and flowering stages, presumably for disease suppression. We surmise that plants secrete blends of compounds and specific phytochemicals in the root exudates that are differentially produced at distinct stages of development to help orchestrate rhizosphere microbiome assemblage. PMID:24196324

  6. Plant surface wax affects parasitoid's response to host footprints

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rostás, Michael; Ruf, Daniel; Zabka, Vanessa; Hildebrandt, Ulrich

    2008-10-01

    The plant surface is the substrate upon which herbivorous insects and natural enemies meet and thus represents the stage for interactions between the three trophic levels. Plant surfaces are covered by an epicuticular wax layer which is highly variable depending on species, cultivar or plant part. Differences in wax chemistry may modulate ecological interactions. We explored whether caterpillars of Spodoptera frugiperda, when walking over a plant surface, leave a chemical trail (kairomones) that can be detected by the parasitoid Cotesia marginiventris. Chemistry and micromorphology of cuticular waxes of two barley eceriferum wax mutants ( cer-za.126, cer-yp.949) and wild-type cv. Bonus (wt) were assessed. The plants were then used to investigate potential surface effects on the detectability of caterpillar kairomones. Here we provide evidence that C. marginiventris responds to chemical footprints of its host. Parasitoids were able to detect the kairomone on wild-type plants and on both cer mutants but the response to cer-yp.949 (reduced wax, high aldehyde fraction) was less pronounced. Experiments with caterpillar-treated wt and mutant leaves offered simultaneously, confirmed this observation: no difference in wasp response was found when wt was tested against cer-za.126 (reduced wax, wt-like chemical composition) but wt was significantly more attractive than cer-yp.949. This demonstrates for the first time that the wax layer can modulate the detectability of host kairomones.

  7. Regression analysis of technical parameters affecting nuclear power plant performances

    SciTech Connect

    Ghazy, R.; Ricotti, M. E.; Trueco, P.

    2012-07-01

    Since the 80's many studies have been conducted in order to explicate good and bad performances of commercial nuclear power plants (NPPs), but yet no defined correlation has been found out to be totally representative of plant operational experience. In early works, data availability and the number of operating power stations were both limited; therefore, results showed that specific technical characteristics of NPPs were supposed to be the main causal factors for successful plant operation. Although these aspects keep on assuming a significant role, later studies and observations showed that other factors concerning management and organization of the plant could instead be predominant comparing utilities operational and economic results. Utility quality, in a word, can be used to summarize all the managerial and operational aspects that seem to be effective in determining plant performance. In this paper operational data of a consistent sample of commercial nuclear power stations, out of the total 433 operating NPPs, are analyzed, mainly focusing on the last decade operational experience. The sample consists of PWR and BWR technology, operated by utilities located in different countries, including U.S. (Japan)) (France)) (Germany)) and Finland. Multivariate regression is performed using Unit Capability Factor (UCF) as the dependent variable; this factor reflects indeed the effectiveness of plant programs and practices in maximizing the available electrical generation and consequently provides an overall indication of how well plants are operated and maintained. Aspects that may not be real causal factors but which can have a consistent impact on the UCF, as technology design, supplier, size and age, are included in the analysis as independent variables. (authors)

  8. Cadmium content of plants as affected by soil cadmium concentration

    SciTech Connect

    Lehoczky, E.; Szabados, I.; Marth, P.

    1996-12-31

    Pot experiments were conducted in greenhouse conditions to study the effects of increasing cadmium (Cd) levels on biomass production and Cd contents in corn, (Zea mays L.), garlic (Allium sativum L.), and spinach (Spinacia oleracea L.). Plants were grown in two soil types: Eutric cambisol soil and A gleyic luvisol soil. Spinach proved to be the most sensitive to Cd treatments as its biomass considerably decreased with the increasing Cd levels. Cadmium contents of the three crops increased with increasing levels of Cd applications. Statistical differences were observed in the Cd contents of crops depending on soil type. With the same Cd rates, Cd tissue concentration of test plants grown in the strongly acidic Gleyic luvisol soil were many times higher than that of plants grown in a neutral Eutric cambisol soil. 14 refs., 4 tabs.

  9. How neighbor canopy architecture affects target plant performance

    SciTech Connect

    Tremmel, D.C.; Bazzaz, F.A. )

    1993-10-01

    Plant competition occurs through the negative effects that individual plants have on resource availability to neighboring individuals. Therefore competition experiments need to examine how different species change resource availability to their neighbors, and how different species respond to these changes-allocationally, architecturally, and physiologically-through time. In a greenhouse study we used a model system of annuals to examine how canopies of species having differing morphologies differed in their architectures and light-interception abilities, and how different species performed when grown in these canopies. Abutilon theophrasti, Datura stramonium, and Polygonum pensylvanicum were grown as [open quotes]targets[close quotes]. Plants were grown in pots, with one target plant and four neighbor plants. Detailed measurements of neighbor canopy structure and target plant canopy architecture were made at five harvests. Species with different morphologies showed large differences in canopy structure, particularly when grass and forb species were compared. Setaria, a grass, had a more open canopy than the other species (all forbs), and was a consistently weak competitor. Overall, however, the relative effects of different neighbors on target biomass varied with target species. Target biomass was poorly correlated with neighbor biomass and leaf area, but was highly correlated with a measure of target light-interception ability that took into account both target leaf deployment and neighbor light interception. Despite clear differences among neighbor species in canopy structure and effect on light penetration, the results suggest no broad generalizations about the effects of different species as neighbors. Knowledge of morphological, physiological, and life history characteristics of both the target and neighbor species may be necessary to explain the results of their competition. 53 refs., 4 figs., 4 tabs.

  10. Tree litter and forest understorey vegetation: a conceptual framework to understand the effects of tree litter on a perennial geophyte, Anemone nemorosa

    PubMed Central

    Baltzinger, Marie; Archaux, Frédéric; Dumas, Yann

    2012-01-01

    Background and Aims Litter is a key factor in structuring plant populations, through positive or negative interactions. The litter layer forms a mechanical barrier that is often strongly selective against individuals lacking hypocotyle plasticity. Litter composition also interacts with plant growth by providing beneficial nutrients or, inversely, by allowing harmful allelopathic leaching. As conspicuous litter fall accumulation is often observed under deciduous forests, interactions between tree litter and understorey plant populations are worthy of study. Methods In a 1-year ex-situ experiment, the effects of tree litter on the growth of Anemone nemorosa, a small perennial forest geophyte, were investigated. Three ‘litter quantity’ treatments were defined, representative of forest floor litter (199, 356·5 and 514 g m−2), which were crossed with five ‘litter composition’ treatments (Quercus petraea, Fagus sylvatica, Carpinus betulus, Q. petraea + F. sylvatica and Q. petraea + C. betulus), plus a no-litter control. Path analysis was then used to investigate the pathways linking litter characteristics and components of adult plant growth. Key Results As expected, the heavier the litter, the longer the petiole; rhizome growth, however, was not depreciated by the litter-induced petiole lengthening. Both rhizome mass increment and number of initiated buds marginally increased with the amount of litter. Rhizome mass increment was in fact determined primarily by leaf area and leaf life span, neither of which was unequivocally correlated with any litter characteristics. However, the presence of litter significantly increased leafing success: following a late frost event, control rhizomes growing in the absence of litter experienced higher leaf mortality before leaf unfolding. Conclusions The study questions the role of litter as a physical or chemical barrier to ground vegetation; to better understand this role, there is a need for ex-situ, longer

  11. Plant extracts affect in vitro rumen microbial fermentation.

    PubMed

    Busquet, M; Calsamiglia, S; Ferret, A; Kamel, C

    2006-02-01

    Different doses of 12 plant extracts and 6 secondary plant metabolites were incubated for 24 h in diluted ruminal fluid with a 50:50 forage:concentrate diet. Treatments were: control (no additive), plant extracts (anise oil, cade oil, capsicum oil, cinnamon oil, clove bud oil, dill oil, fenugreek, garlic oil, ginger oil, oregano oil, tea tree oil, and yucca), and secondary plant metabolites (anethol, benzyl salicylate, carvacrol, carvone, cinnamaldehyde, and eugenol). Each treatment was supplied at 3, 30, 300, and 3,000 mg/L of culture fluid. At 3,000 mg/L, most treatments decreased total volatile fatty acid concentration, but cade oil, capsicum oil, dill oil, fenugreek, ginger oil, and yucca had no effect. Different doses of anethol, anise oil, carvone, and tea tree oil decreased the proportion of acetate and propionate, which suggests that these compounds may not be nutritionally beneficial to dairy cattle. Garlic oil (300 and 3,000 mg/L) and benzyl salicylate (300 and 3,000 mg/L) reduced acetate and increased propionate and butyrate proportions, suggesting that methane production was inhibited. At 3,000 mg/L, capsicum oil, carvacrol, carvone, cinnamaldehyde, cinnamon oil, clove bud oil, eugenol, fenugreek, and oregano oil resulted in a 30 to 50% reduction in ammonia N concentration. Careful selection and combination of these extracts may allow the manipulation of rumen microbial fermentation. PMID:16428643

  12. Maximizing plant density affects broccoli yield and quality

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Increased demand for fresh market bunch broccoli (Brassica oleracea L. var. italica) has led to increased production along the United States east coast. Maximizing broccoli yields is a primary concern for quickly expanding southeastern commercial markets. This broccoli plant density study was carr...

  13. Herbivory of an invasive slug is affected by earthworms and the composition of plant communities

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Biodiversity loss and species invasions are among the most important human-induced global changes. Moreover, these two processes are interlinked as ecosystem invasibility is considered to increase with decreasing biodiversity. In temperate grasslands, earthworms serve as important ecosystem engineers making up the majority of soil faunal biomass. Herbivore behaviour has been shown to be affected by earthworms, however it is unclear whether these effects differ with the composition of plant communities. To test this we conducted a mesocosm experiment where we added earthworms (Annelida: Lumbricidae) to planted grassland communities with different plant species composition (3 vs. 12 plant spp.). Plant communities had equal plant densities and ratios of the functional groups grasses, non-leguminous forbs and legumes. Later, Arion vulgaris slugs (formerly known as A. lusitanicus; Gastropoda: Arionidae) were added and allowed to freely choose among the available plant species. This slug species is listed among the 100 worst alien species in Europe. We hypothesized that (i) the food choice of slugs would be altered by earthworms’ specific effects on the growth and nutrient content of plant species, (ii) slug herbivory will be less affected by earthworms in plant communities containing more plant species than in those with fewer plant species because of a more readily utilization of plant resources making the impacts of earthworms less pronounced. Results Slug herbivory was significantly affected by both earthworms and plant species composition. Slugs damaged 60% less leaves when earthworms were present, regardless of the species composition of the plant communities. Percent leaf area consumed by slugs was 40% lower in communities containing 12 plant species; in communities containing only three species earthworms increased slug leaf area consumption. Grasses were generally avoided by slugs. Leaf length and number of tillers was increased in mesocosms

  14. Volatile Exchange between Undamaged Plants - a New Mechanism Affecting Insect Orientation in Intercropping

    PubMed Central

    Ninkovic, Velemir; Dahlin, Iris; Vucetic, Andja; Petrovic-Obradovic, Olivera; Glinwood, Robert; Webster, Ben

    2013-01-01

    Changes in plant volatile emission can be induced by exposure to volatiles from neighbouring insect-attacked plants. However, plants are also exposed to volatiles from unattacked neighbours, and the consequences of this have not been explored. We investigated whether volatile exchange between undamaged plants affects volatile emission and plant-insect interaction. Consistently greater quantities of two terpenoids were found in the headspace of potato previously exposed to volatiles from undamaged onion plants identified by mass spectrometry. Using live plants and synthetic blends mimicking exposed and unexposed potato, we tested the olfactory response of winged aphids, Myzus persicae. The altered potato volatile profile deterred aphids in laboratory experiments. Further, we show that growing potato together with onion in the field reduces the abundance of winged, host-seeking aphids. Our study broadens the ecological significance of the phenomenon; volatiles carry not only information on whether or not neighbouring plants are under attack, but also information on the emitter plants themselves. In this way responding plants could obtain information on whether the neighbouring plant is a competitive threat and can accordingly adjust their growth towards it. We interpret this as a response in the process of adaptation towards neighbouring plants. Furthermore, these physiological changes in the responding plants have significant ecological impact, as behaviour of aphids was affected. Since herbivore host plants are potentially under constant exposure to these volatiles, our study has major implications for the understanding of how mechanisms within plant communities affect insects. This knowledge could be used to improve plant protection and increase scientific understanding of communication between plants and its impact on other organisms. PMID:23922710

  15. Feeding resource partitioning between two understorey insectivorous birds in a fragment of Neotropical cloud forest.

    PubMed

    Manhães, M A; Dias, M M; Lima, A L C

    2015-11-01

    The food habits and niche overlap based on diet composition and prey size of two species of understorey insectivorous birds were investigated in an area of montane rain forest in the state of Minas Gerais, southeastern Brazil. A total of 43 birds were captured: 33 individuals of Conopophaga lineata (Conopophagidae) with 13 recaptures, and 10 individuals of Myiothlypis leucoblephara (Parulidae) with 12 recaptures, from which were obtained respectively 33 and 10 fecal samples. Fragments of 16 groups of arthropods, plus insect eggs, were identified in these samples. Conopophaga lineata predominantly consumed Formicidae (32%) and Isoptera (23.6%). However, the index of alimentary importance (AI) of Isoptera (3.53) was lower than other groups such as Formicidae (AI = 61.88), Coleoptera (AI = 16.17), insect larvae (AI = 6.95) and Araneae (AI = 6.6). Myiothlypis leucoblephara predominantly consumed Formicidae (28.2%) and Coleoptera (24.4%), although Coleoptera and Hymenoptera non-Formicidae had the highest values of AI (38.71 and 22.98 respectively). Differences in the proportions of the types of arthropods consumed by birds were not enough to reveal their separation into feeding niches (overlap = 0.618, p observed ≤ expected = 0.934), whereas differences in the use of resources was mainly due to the size of the prey (p<0.001), where C lineata, the species with the highest body mass (p<0.001) consumed larger prey. It is plausible that prey size is an axis of niche dimension that allows the coexistence of these species. PMID:26602358

  16. Solanum malacoxylon: a toxic plant which affects animal calcium metabolism.

    PubMed

    Boland, R L

    1988-12-01

    The "enteque seco" is a disease of calcinosis, i.e., pathological deposition of calcium phosphate in soft tissues, which occurs in grazing cattle in Argentina and is of considerable economic importance. The ingestion of leaves of Solanum malacoxylon has been identified as the cause of the disease. Hypercalcemia and/or hyperphosphatemia and mineralization of the cardiovascular and pulmonary systems are usually seen in bovines or experimental animals exposed to this plant. The symptoms of the disease resemble those of vitamin D intoxication. In agreement with these observations, a glycoside derivative of 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3 (1,25(OH)2D3), the hormonally active form of vitamin D in animals, has been identified as the toxic principle of S. malacoxylon. Glycoside conjugates of its precursors, 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 and vitamin D3, may also be present. Recent studies indicate that the plant factor is modified in the rumen of bovines through cleavage of the glycosidic linkage and further conversion of the released 1,25(OH)2D3 to a more polar metabolite, possibly 1,24,25-trihydroxyvitamin D3. Excess free 1,25(OH)2D3 may alter extracellular and intracellular Ca homeostasis in intoxicated animals through a receptor-mediated mechanism and activation of membrane Ca channels. In addition, 1,24,25(OH)3D3 may potentiate the effects of 1,25(OH)2D3 on intestinal Ca transport. PMID:3077267

  17. Spatial heterogeneity of plant-soil feedback affects root interactions and interspecific competition.

    PubMed

    Hendriks, Marloes; Ravenek, Janneke M; Smit-Tiekstra, Annemiek E; van der Paauw, Jan Willem; de Caluwe, Hannie; van der Putten, Wim H; de Kroon, Hans; Mommer, Liesje

    2015-08-01

    Plant-soil feedback is receiving increasing interest as a factor influencing plant competition and species coexistence in grasslands. However, we do not know how spatial distribution of plant-soil feedback affects plant below-ground interactions. We investigated the way in which spatial heterogeneity of soil biota affects competitive interactions in grassland plant species. We performed a pairwise competition experiment combined with heterogeneous distribution of soil biota using four grassland plant species and their soil biota. Patches were applied as quadrants of 'own' and 'foreign' soils from all plant species in all pairwise combinations. To evaluate interspecific root responses, species-specific root biomass was quantified using real-time PCR. All plant species suffered negative soil feedback, but strength was species-specific, reflected by a decrease in root growth in own compared with foreign soil. Reduction in root growth in own patches by the superior plant competitor provided opportunities for inferior competitors to increase root biomass in these patches. These patterns did not cascade into above-ground effects during our experiment. We show that root distributions can be determined by spatial heterogeneity of soil biota, affecting plant below-ground competitive interactions. Thus, spatial heterogeneity of soil biota may contribute to plant species coexistence in species-rich grasslands. PMID:25871977

  18. Habitats as Complex Odour Environments: How Does Plant Diversity Affect Herbivore and Parasitoid Orientation?

    PubMed Central

    Wäschke, Nicole; Hardge, Kristin; Hancock, Christine; Hilker, Monika; Obermaier, Elisabeth; Meiners, Torsten

    2014-01-01

    Plant diversity is known to affect success of host location by pest insects, but its effect on olfactory orientation of non-pest insect species has hardly been addressed. First, we tested in laboratory experiments the hypothesis that non-host plants, which increase odour complexity in habitats, affect the host location ability of herbivores and parasitoids. Furthermore, we recorded field data of plant diversity in addition to herbivore and parasitoid abundance at 77 grassland sites in three different regions in Germany in order to elucidate whether our laboratory results reflect the field situation. As a model system we used the herb Plantago lanceolata, the herbivorous weevil Mecinus pascuorum, and its larval parasitoid Mesopolobus incultus. The laboratory bioassays revealed that both the herbivorous weevil and its larval parasitoid can locate their host plant and host via olfactory cues even in the presence of non-host odour. In a newly established two-circle olfactometer, the weeviĺs capability to detect host plant odour was not affected by odours from non-host plants. However, addition of non-host plant odours to host plant odour enhanced the weeviĺs foraging activity. The parasitoid was attracted by a combination of host plant and host volatiles in both the absence and presence of non-host plant volatiles in a Y-tube olfactometer. In dual choice tests the parasitoid preferred the blend of host plant and host volatiles over its combination with non-host plant volatiles. In the field, no indication was found that high plant diversity disturbs host (plant) location by the weevil and its parasitoid. In contrast, plant diversity was positively correlated with weevil abundance, whereas parasitoid abundance was independent of plant diversity. Therefore, we conclude that weevils and parasitoids showed the sensory capacity to successfully cope with complex vegetation odours when searching for hosts. PMID:24416354

  19. A Fungal Endosymbiont Affects Host Plant Recruitment Through Seed- and Litter-mediated Mechanisms

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    1. Many grass species are associated with maternally transmitted fungal endophytes. Increasing evidence shows that endophytes enhance host plant success under varied conditions, yet studies have rarely considered alternative mechanisms whereby these mutualistic symbionts may affect regeneration from...

  20. Reassessment of selected factors affecting siting of Nuclear Power Plants

    SciTech Connect

    Davis, R.E.; Hanson, A.L.; Mubayi, V.; Nourbakhsh, H.P.

    1997-02-01

    Brookhaven National Laboratory has performed a series of probabilistic consequence assessment calculations for nuclear reactor siting. This study takes into account recent insights into severe accident source terms and examines consequences in a risk based format consistent with the quantitative health objectives (QHOs) of the NRC`s Safety Goal Policy. Simplified severe accident source terms developed in this study are based on the risk insights of NUREG-1150. The results of the study indicate that both the quantity of radioactivity released in a severe accident as well as the likelihood of a release are lower than those predicted in earlier studies. The accident risks using the simplified source terms are examined at a series of generic plant sites, that vary in population distribution, meteorological conditions, and exclusion area boundary distances. Sensitivity calculations are performed to evaluate the effects of emergency protective action assumptions on the risk of prompt fatality and latent cancers fatality, and population relocation. The study finds that based on the new source terms the prompt and latent fatality risks at all generic sites meet the QHOs of the NRC`s Safety Goal Policy by margins ranging from one to more than three orders of magnitude. 4 refs., 17 figs., 24 tabs.

  1. Allocation, stress tolerance and carbon transport in plants: how does phloem physiology affect plant ecology?

    PubMed

    Savage, Jessica A; Clearwater, Michael J; Haines, Dustin F; Klein, Tamir; Mencuccini, Maurizio; Sevanto, Sanna; Turgeon, Robert; Zhang, Cankui

    2016-04-01

    Despite the crucial role of carbon transport in whole plant physiology and its impact on plant-environment interactions and ecosystem function, relatively little research has tried to examine how phloem physiology impacts plant ecology. In this review, we highlight several areas of active research where inquiry into phloem physiology has increased our understanding of whole plant function and ecological processes. We consider how xylem-phloem interactions impact plant drought tolerance and reproduction, how phloem transport influences carbon allocation in trees and carbon cycling in ecosystems and how phloem function mediates plant relations with insects, pests, microbes and symbiotes. We argue that in spite of challenges that exist in studying phloem physiology, it is critical that we consider the role of this dynamic vascular system when examining the relationship between plants and their biotic and abiotic environment. PMID:26147312

  2. 40 CFR 230.75 - Actions affecting plant and animal populations.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... populations. 230.75 Section 230.75 Protection of Environment ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY (CONTINUED) OCEAN... Actions To Minimize Adverse Effects § 230.75 Actions affecting plant and animal populations. Minimization of adverse effects on populations of plants and animals can be achieved by: (a) Avoiding changes...

  3. 40 CFR 230.75 - Actions affecting plant and animal populations.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... populations. 230.75 Section 230.75 Protection of Environment ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY (CONTINUED) OCEAN... Actions To Minimize Adverse Effects § 230.75 Actions affecting plant and animal populations. Minimization of adverse effects on populations of plants and animals can be achieved by: (a) Avoiding changes...

  4. 40 CFR 230.75 - Actions affecting plant and animal populations.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... populations. 230.75 Section 230.75 Protection of Environment ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY (CONTINUED) OCEAN... Actions To Minimize Adverse Effects § 230.75 Actions affecting plant and animal populations. Minimization of adverse effects on populations of plants and animals can be achieved by: (a) Avoiding changes...

  5. 40 CFR 230.75 - Actions affecting plant and animal populations.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... populations. 230.75 Section 230.75 Protection of Environment ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY (CONTINUED) OCEAN... Actions To Minimize Adverse Effects § 230.75 Actions affecting plant and animal populations. Minimization of adverse effects on populations of plants and animals can be achieved by: (a) Avoiding changes...

  6. 40 CFR 230.75 - Actions affecting plant and animal populations.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... populations. 230.75 Section 230.75 Protection of Environment ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY (CONTINUED) OCEAN... Actions To Minimize Adverse Effects § 230.75 Actions affecting plant and animal populations. Minimization of adverse effects on populations of plants and animals can be achieved by: (a) Avoiding changes...

  7. Nitrogen and water affect direct and indirect plant systemic induced defense in cotton

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    We tested the affects of nitrogen levels and water availability on the ability of cotton plants to deter feeding by Spodoptera exigua larvae through induction of anti-feedant chemicals by the cotton plant, and to attract the biological control agent, Micropitis crociepes through induction of chemica...

  8. Drought stress affects plant metabolites and herbivore preference but not host location by its parasitoids.

    PubMed

    Weldegergis, Berhane T; Zhu, Feng; Poelman, Erik H; Dicke, Marcel

    2015-03-01

    One of the main abiotic stresses that strongly affects plant survival and the primary cause of crop loss around the world is drought. Drought stress leads to sequential morphological, physiological, biochemical and molecular changes that can have severe effects on plant growth, development and productivity. As a consequence of these changes, the interaction between plants and insects can be altered. Using cultivated Brassica oleracea plants, the parasitoid Microplitis mediator and its herbivorous host Mamestra brassicae, we studied the effect of drought stress on (1) the emission of plant volatile organic compounds (VOCs), (2) plant hormone titres, (3) preference and performance of the herbivore, and (4) preference of the parasitoid. Higher levels of jasmonic acid (JA) and abscisic acid (ABA) were recorded in response to herbivory, but no significant differences were observed for salicylic acid (SA) and indole-3-acetic acid (IAA). Drought significantly impacted SA level and showed a significant interactive effect with herbivory for IAA levels. A total of 55 VOCs were recorded and the difference among the treatments was influenced largely by herbivory, where the emission rate of fatty acid-derived volatiles, nitriles and (E)-4,8-dimethylnona-1,3,7-triene [(E)-DMNT] was enhanced. Mamestra brassicae moths preferred to lay eggs on drought-stressed over control plants; their offspring performed similarly on plants of both treatments. VOCs due to drought did not affect the choice of M. mediator parasitoids. Overall, our study reveals an influence of drought on plant chemistry and insect-plant interactions. PMID:25370387

  9. Widespread seed limitation affects plant density but not population trajectory in the invasive plant Centaurea solstitialis

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    In some plant populations, the availability of seeds strongly regulates recruitment. However, a scarcity of germination microsites, granivory or density dependent mortality can reduce the number of plants that germinate or survive to flowering. The relative strength of these controls is unknown for ...

  10. Volatile interaction between undamaged plants affects tritrophic interactions through changed plant volatile emission.

    PubMed

    Vucetic, Andja; Dahlin, Iris; Petrovic-Obradovic, Olivera; Glinwood, Robert; Webster, Ben; Ninkovic, Velemir

    2014-01-01

    Volatile interactions between unattacked plants can lead to changes in their volatile emissions. Exposure of potato plants to onion plant volatiles results in increased emission of 2 terpenoids, (E)-nerolidol and TMTT. We investigated whether this is detectable by the ladybird Coccinella septempunctata. The odor of onion-exposed potato was significantly more attractive to ladybirds than that of unexposed potato. Further, a synthetic blend mimicking the volatile profile of onion-exposed potato was more attractive than a blend mimicking that of unexposed potato. When presented individually, TMTT was attractive to ladybirds whereas (E)-nerolidol was repellent. Volatile exchange between unattacked plants and consequent increased attractiveness for ladybirds may be a mechanism that contributes to the increased abundance of natural enemies in complex plant habitats. PMID:25763628

  11. Climate warming affects biological invasions by shifting interactions of plants and herbivores.

    PubMed

    Lu, Xinmin; Siemann, Evan; Shao, Xu; Wei, Hui; Ding, Jianqing

    2013-08-01

    Plants and herbivorous insects can each be dramatically affected by temperature. Climate warming may impact plant invasion success directly but also indirectly through changes in their natural enemies. To date, however, there are no tests of how climate warming shifts the interactions among invasive plants and their natural enemies to affect invasion success. Field surveys covering the full latitudinal range of invasive Alternanthera philoxeroides in China showed that a beetle introduced for biocontrol was rare or absent at higher latitudes. In contrast, plant cover and mass increased with latitude. In a 2-year field experiment near the northern limit of beetle distribution, we found the beetle sustained populations across years under elevated temperature, dramatically decreasing A. philoxeroides growth, but it failed to overwinter in ambient temperature. Together, these results suggest that warming will allow the natural enemy to expand its range, potentially benefiting biocontrol in regions that are currently too cold for the natural enemy. However, the invader may also expand its range further north in response to warming. In such cases where plants tolerate cold better than their natural enemies, the geographical gap between plant and herbivorous insect ranges may not disappear but will shift to higher latitudes, leading to a new zone of enemy release. Therefore, warming will not only affect plant invasions directly but also drive either enemy release or increase that will result in contrasting effects on invasive plants. The findings are also critical for future management of invasive species under climate change. PMID:23640751

  12. Negative effects of fluoranthene on the ecophysiology of tomato plants (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill) Fluoranthene mists negatively affected tomato plants.

    PubMed

    Oguntimehin, Ilemobayo; Eissa, Fawzy; Sakugawa, Hiroshi

    2010-02-01

    Cherry tomato plants (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill) were sprayed with fluoranthene and mixture of fluoranthene and mannitol solutions for 30d. The exposure was carried out in growth chambers in field conditions, and the air was filtered through charcoal filters to remove atmospheric contaminants. Plants were sprayed with 10microM fluoranthene as mist until they reached the fruiting stage, and the eco-physiological parameters were measured to determine the effects of the treatments. We measured CO(2) uptake and water vapour exchange, chlorophyll fluorescence, leaf pigment contents, visual symptoms and biomass allocation. Fluoranthene which was deposited as mist onto leaves negatively affected both growth and the quality of tomato plants, while other treatments did not. The photosynthetic rate measured at saturated irradiance was approximately 37% lower in fluoranthene-treated plants compared with the control group. Other variables, such as stomata conductance, the photochemical efficiency of PSII in the dark, Chl a, Chl b, and the total chlorophyll contents of the tomato leaves were significantly reduced in the fluoranthene-treated plants. Tomato plants treated with fluoranthene showed severe visible injury symptoms on the foliage during the exposure period. Mannitol (a reactive oxygen scavenger) mitigated effects of fluoranthene; thus, reactive oxygen species generated through fluoranthene may be responsible for the damaged tomato plants. It is possible for fluoranthene to decrease the aesthetic and hence the economic value of this valuable crop plant. PMID:20006894

  13. Flavonoid accumulation in Arabidopsis repressed in lignin synthesis affects auxin transport and plant growth.

    PubMed

    Besseau, Sébastien; Hoffmann, Laurent; Geoffroy, Pierrette; Lapierre, Catherine; Pollet, Brigitte; Legrand, Michel

    2007-01-01

    In Arabidopsis thaliana, silencing of hydroxycinnamoyl-CoA shikimate/quinate hydroxycinnamoyl transferase (HCT), a lignin biosynthetic gene, results in a strong reduction of plant growth. We show that, in HCT-silenced plants, lignin synthesis repression leads to the redirection of the metabolic flux into flavonoids through chalcone synthase activity. Several flavonol glycosides and acylated anthocyanin were shown to accumulate in higher amounts in silenced plants. By contrast, sinapoylmalate levels were barely affected, suggesting that the synthesis of that phenylpropanoid compound might be HCT-independent. The growth phenotype of HCT-silenced plants was shown to be controlled by light and to depend on chalcone synthase expression. Histochemical analysis of silenced stem tissues demonstrated altered tracheary elements. The level of plant growth reduction of HCT-deficient plants was correlated with the inhibition of auxin transport. Suppression of flavonoid accumulation by chalcone synthase repression in HCT-deficient plants restored normal auxin transport and wild-type plant growth. By contrast, the lignin structure of the plants simultaneously repressed for HCT and chalcone synthase remained as severely altered as in HCT-silenced plants, with a large predominance of nonmethoxylated H units. These data demonstrate that the reduced size phenotype of HCT-silenced plants is not due to the alteration of lignin synthesis but to flavonoid accumulation. PMID:17237352

  14. Selective Pressure along a Latitudinal Gradient Affects Subindividual Variation in Plants

    PubMed Central

    Sobral, Mar; Guitián, José; Guitián, Pablo; Larrinaga, Asier R.

    2013-01-01

    Individual plants produce repeated structures such as leaves, flowers or fruits, which, although belonging to the same genotype, are not phenotypically identical. Such subindividual variation reflects the potential of individual genotypes to vary with micro-environmental conditions. Furthermore, variation in organ traits imposes costs to foraging animals such as time, energy and increased predation risk. Therefore, animals that interact with plants may respond to this variation and affect plant fitness. Thus, phenotypic variation within an individual plant could be, in part, an adaptive trait. Here we investigated this idea and we found that subindividual variation of fruit size of Crataegus monogyna, in different populations throughout the latitudinal gradient in Europe, was explained at some extent by the selective pressures exerted by seed-dispersing birds. These findings support the hypothesis that within-individual variation in plants is an adaptive trait selected by interacting animals which may have important implications for plant evolution. PMID:24069297

  15. Plant diversity and functional groups affect Si and Ca pools in aboveground biomass of grassland systems.

    PubMed

    Schaller, Jörg; Roscher, Christiane; Hillebrand, Helmut; Weigelt, Alexandra; Oelmann, Yvonne; Wilcke, Wolfgang; Ebeling, Anne; Weisser, Wolfgang W

    2016-09-01

    Plant diversity is an important driver of nitrogen and phosphorus stocks in aboveground plant biomass of grassland ecosystems, but plant diversity effects on other elements also important for plant growth are less understood. We tested whether plant species richness, functional group richness or the presence/absence of particular plant functional groups influences the Si and Ca concentrations (mmol g(-1)) and stocks (mmol m(-2)) in aboveground plant biomass in a large grassland biodiversity experiment (Jena Experiment). In the experiment including 60 temperate grassland species, plant diversity was manipulated as sown species richness (1, 2, 4, 8, 16) and richness and identity of plant functional groups (1-4; grasses, small herbs, tall herbs, legumes). We found positive species richness effects on Si as well as Ca stocks that were attributable to increased biomass production. The presence of particular functional groups was the most important factor explaining variation in aboveground Si and Ca stocks (mmol m(-2)). Grass presence increased the Si stocks by 140 % and legume presence increased the Ca stock by 230 %. Both the presence of specific plant functional groups and species diversity altered Si and Ca stocks, whereas Si and Ca concentration were affected mostly by the presence of specific plant functional groups. However, we found a negative effect of species diversity on Si and Ca accumulation, by calculating the deviation between mixtures and mixture biomass proportions, but in monoculture concentrations. These changes may in turn affect ecosystem processes such as plant litter decomposition and nutrient cycling in grasslands. PMID:27164912

  16. Biogenic NO emission from a spruce forest soil in the Fichtelgebirge (Germany) under the influence of different understorey vegetation cover

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bargsten, A.; Andreae, M. O.; Meixner, F. X.

    2009-04-01

    Within the framework of the EGER project (ExchanGE processes in mountainous Regions) soil samples have been taken from the spruce forest site "Weidenbrunnen" (Fichtelgebirge, Germany) in September 2008 to determine the NO exchange in the laboratory and for a series of soil analyses. The soil was sampled below different understorey vegetation covers: young Norway spruce, moss/litter, blueberries and grass. We investigated the net NO release rate from corresponding organic layers as well as from the A horizon of respective soils. Additionally we measured pH, C/N ratio, contents of ammonium, nitrate, and organic C, bulk density, the thickness of the organic layer and the quality of the organic matter. Net NO release rates (as well as the NO production and NO consumption rates) from the soil samples were determined by a fully automated laboratory incubation & fumigation system. Purified dry air passed five dynamic incubation chambers, four containing water saturated soil samples and one reference chamber. By this procedure, the soil samples dried out slowly (within 2-6 days), covering the full range of soil moisture (0-300% gravimetric soil moisture). To quantify NO production and NO consumption rates separately, soil samples were fumigated with zero-air (approx. 0 ppb NO) and air of 133 ppb NO. The chambers were placed in a thermostatted cabinet for incubation at 10 an 20˚ C. NO and H2O concentrations at the outlet of the five dynamic chambers were measured sequentially by chemiluminescence and IR-absorption based analyzers, switching corresponding valves every two minutes. Net NO release rates were determined from the NO concentration difference between soil containing and reference chambers. Corresponding measurements of H2O mixing ratio yielded the evaporation loss of the soil samples, which (referenced to the gravimetric soil water content before and after the incubation experiment) provided the individual soil moisture contents of each soil samples during the

  17. The Salicylic Acid-Mediated Release of Plant Volatiles Affects the Host Choice of Bemisia tabaci

    PubMed Central

    Shi, Xiaobin; Chen, Gong; Tian, Lixia; Peng, Zhengke; Xie, Wen; Wu, Qingjun; Wang, Shaoli; Zhou, Xuguo; Zhang, Youjun

    2016-01-01

    The whitefly Bemisia tabaci (Gennadius) (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae) causes serious crop losses worldwide by transmitting viruses. We have previously shown that salicylic acid (SA)-related plant defenses directly affect whiteflies. In this study, we applied exogenous SA to tomato plants in order to investigate the interaction between SA-induced plant volatiles and nonviruliferous B. tabaci B and Q or B- and Q-carrying tomato yellow leaf curl virus (TYLCV). The results showed that exogenous SA caused plants to repel nonviruliferous whiteflies, but the effect was reduced when the SA concentration was low and when the whiteflies were viruliferous. Exogenous SA increased the number and quantity of plant volatiles—especially the quantity of methyl salicylate and δ-limonene. In Y-tube olfactometer assays, methyl salicylate and δ-limonene repelled the whiteflies, but the repellency was reduced for viruliferous Q. We suggest that the release of plant volatiles as mediated by SA affects the interaction between whiteflies, plants, and viruses. Further studies are needed to determine why viruliferous Q is less sensitive than nonviruliferous Q to repellent plant volatiles. PMID:27376280

  18. The Salicylic Acid-Mediated Release of Plant Volatiles Affects the Host Choice of Bemisia tabaci.

    PubMed

    Shi, Xiaobin; Chen, Gong; Tian, Lixia; Peng, Zhengke; Xie, Wen; Wu, Qingjun; Wang, Shaoli; Zhou, Xuguo; Zhang, Youjun

    2016-01-01

    The whitefly Bemisia tabaci (Gennadius) (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae) causes serious crop losses worldwide by transmitting viruses. We have previously shown that salicylic acid (SA)-related plant defenses directly affect whiteflies. In this study, we applied exogenous SA to tomato plants in order to investigate the interaction between SA-induced plant volatiles and nonviruliferous B. tabaci B and Q or B- and Q-carrying tomato yellow leaf curl virus (TYLCV). The results showed that exogenous SA caused plants to repel nonviruliferous whiteflies, but the effect was reduced when the SA concentration was low and when the whiteflies were viruliferous. Exogenous SA increased the number and quantity of plant volatiles-especially the quantity of methyl salicylate and δ-limonene. In Y-tube olfactometer assays, methyl salicylate and δ-limonene repelled the whiteflies, but the repellency was reduced for viruliferous Q. We suggest that the release of plant volatiles as mediated by SA affects the interaction between whiteflies, plants, and viruses. Further studies are needed to determine why viruliferous Q is less sensitive than nonviruliferous Q to repellent plant volatiles. PMID:27376280

  19. Deviation from niche optima affects the nature of plant-plant interactions along a soil acidity gradient.

    PubMed

    He, Lei; Cheng, Lulu; Hu, Liangliang; Tang, Jianjun; Chen, Xin

    2016-01-01

    There is increasing recognition of the importance of niche optima in the shift of plant-plant interactions along environmental stress gradients. Here, we investigate whether deviation from niche optima would affect the outcome of plant-plant interactions along a soil acidity gradient (pH = 3.1, 4.1, 5.5 and 6.1) in a pot experiment. We used the acid-tolerant species Lespedeza formosa Koehne as the neighbouring plant and the acid-tolerant species Indigofera pseudotinctoria Mats. or acid-sensitive species Medicago sativa L. as the target plants. Biomass was used to determine the optimal pH and to calculate the relative interaction index (RII). We found that the relationships between RII and the deviation of soil pH from the target's optimal pH were linear for both target species. Both targets were increasingly promoted by the neighbour as pH values deviated from their optima; neighbours benefitted target plants by promoting soil symbiotic arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi, increasing soil organic matter or reducing soil exchangeable aluminium. Our results suggest that the shape of the curve describing the relationship between soil pH and facilitation/competition depends on the soil pH optima of the particular species. PMID:26740568

  20. Planting geometry and plant population affect dryland maize grain yield and harvest index

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Water for dryland grain production in the Texas panhandle is limited. Agronomic practices such as reduction in plant population or change in sowing time may help increase maize (Zea mays L.) yield potential. Tiller formation under dryland conditions leads to more vegetative growth and reduced yield....

  1. Accumulation of heavy metals in sunflower and sorghum plants affected by the Guadiamar spill.

    PubMed

    Murillo, J M; Marañón, T; Cabrera, F; López, R

    1999-12-01

    The collapse of a pyrite-mining, tailing dam on 25 April 1998 contaminated approximately 2000 ha of croplands along the Agrio and Guadiamar river valleys in southern Spain. This paper reports the accumulation of chemical elements in soil and in two crops--sunflower and sorghum--affected by the spill. Total concentrations of As, Bi, Cd, Cu, Mn, Pb, Sb, Tl and Zn in spill-affected soils were greater than in adjacent, unaffected soils. Leaves of spill-affected crop plants had higher nutrient (K, Ca and Mg for sunflower and N and K for sorghum) concentrations than controls, indicating a 'fertilising' effect caused by the sludge. Seeds of spill-affected sunflower plants did accumulate more As, Cd, Cu and Zn than controls, but values were below toxic levels. Leaves of sorghum plants accumulated more As, Bi, Cd, Mn, Pb, Tl and Zn than controls, but these values were also below toxic levels for livestock consumption. In general, none of the heavy metals studied in both crops reached either phytotoxic or toxic levels for humans or livestock. Nevertheless, a continuous monitoring of heavy metal accumulation in soil and plants must be established in the spill-affected area. PMID:10635586

  2. Ozone affects growth and development of Pieris brassicae on the wild host plant Brassica nigra.

    PubMed

    Khaling, Eliezer; Papazian, Stefano; Poelman, Erik H; Holopainen, Jarmo K; Albrectsen, Benedicte R; Blande, James D

    2015-04-01

    When plants are exposed to ozone they exhibit changes in both primary and secondary metabolism, which may affect their interactions with herbivorous insects. Here we investigated the performance and preferences of the specialist herbivore Pieris brassicae on the wild plant Brassica nigra under elevated ozone conditions. The direct and indirect effects of ozone on the plant-herbivore system were studied. In both cases ozone exposure had a negative effect on P. brassicae development. However, in dual-choice tests larvae preferentially consumed plant material previously fumigated with the highest concentration tested, showing a lack of correlation between larval preference and performance on ozone exposed plants. Metabolomic analysis of leaf material subjected to combinations of ozone and herbivore-feeding, and focussing on known defence metabolites, indicated that P. brassicae behaviour and performance were associated with ozone-induced alterations to glucosinolate and phenolic pools. PMID:25645061

  3. Ontogenetic shifts in plant interactions vary with environmental severity and affect population structure.

    PubMed

    le Roux, Peter C; Shaw, Justine D; Chown, Steven L

    2013-10-01

    Environmental conditions and plant size may both alter the outcome of inter-specific plant-plant interactions, with seedlings generally facilitated more strongly than larger individuals in stressful habitats. However, the combined impact of plant size and environmental severity on interactions is poorly understood. Here, we tested explicitly for the first time the hypothesis that ontogenetic shifts in interactions are delayed under increasingly severe conditions by examining the interaction between a grass, Agrostis magellanica, and a cushion plant, Azorella selago, along two severity gradients. The impact of A. selago on A. magellanica abundance, but not reproductive effort, was related to A. magellanica size, with a trend for delayed shifts towards more negative interactions under greater environmental severity. Intermediate-sized individuals were most strongly facilitated, leading to differences in the size-class distribution of A. magellanica on the soil and on A. selago. The A. magellanica size-class distribution was more strongly affected by A. selago than by environmental severity, demonstrating that the plant-plant interaction impacts A. magellanica population structure more strongly than habitat conditions. As ontogenetic shifts in plant-plant interactions cannot be assumed to be constant across severity gradients and may impact species population structure, studies examining the outcome of interactions need to consider the potential for size- or age-related variation in competition and facilitation. PMID:23738758

  4. Fusarium Oxysporum Volatiles Enhance Plant Growth Via Affecting Auxin Transport and Signaling

    PubMed Central

    Bitas, Vasileios; McCartney, Nathaniel; Li, Ningxiao; Demers, Jill; Kim, Jung-Eun; Kim, Hye-Seon; Brown, Kathleen M.; Kang, Seogchan

    2015-01-01

    Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) have well-documented roles in plant-plant communication and directing animal behavior. In this study, we examine the less understood roles of VOCs in plant-fungal relationships. Phylogenetically and ecologically diverse strains of Fusarium oxysporum, a fungal species complex that often resides in the rhizosphere of assorted plants, produce volatile compounds that augment shoot and root growth of Arabidopsis thaliana and tobacco. Growth responses of A. thaliana hormone signaling mutants and expression patterns of a GUS reporter gene under the auxin-responsive DR5 promoter supported the involvement of auxin signaling in F. oxysporum volatile-mediated growth enhancement. In addition, 1-naphthylthalamic acid, an inhibitor of auxin efflux, negated F. oxysporum volatile-mediated growth enhancement in both plants. Comparison of the profiles of volatile compounds produced by F. oxysporum strains that differentially affected plant growth suggests that the relative compositions of both growth inhibitory and stimulatory compounds may determine the degree of plant growth enhancement. Volatile-mediated signaling between fungi and plants may represent a potentially conserved, yet mostly overlooked, mechanism underpinning plant-fungus interactions and fungal niche adaption. PMID:26617587

  5. Plant volatiles induced by herbivore egg deposition affect insects of different trophic levels.

    PubMed

    Fatouros, Nina E; Lucas-Barbosa, Dani; Weldegergis, Berhane T; Pashalidou, Foteini G; van Loon, Joop J A; Dicke, Marcel; Harvey, Jeffrey A; Gols, Rieta; Huigens, Martinus E

    2012-01-01

    Plants release volatiles induced by herbivore feeding that may affect the diversity and composition of plant-associated arthropod communities. However, the specificity and role of plant volatiles induced during the early phase of attack, i.e. egg deposition by herbivorous insects, and their consequences on insects of different trophic levels remain poorly explored. In olfactometer and wind tunnel set-ups, we investigated behavioural responses of a specialist cabbage butterfly (Pieris brassicae) and two of its parasitic wasps (Trichogramma brassicae and Cotesia glomerata) to volatiles of a wild crucifer (Brassica nigra) induced by oviposition of the specialist butterfly and an additional generalist moth (Mamestra brassicae). Gravid butterflies were repelled by volatiles from plants induced by cabbage white butterfly eggs, probably as a means of avoiding competition, whereas both parasitic wasp species were attracted. In contrast, volatiles from plants induced by eggs of the generalist moth did neither repel nor attract any of the tested community members. Analysis of the plant's volatile metabolomic profile by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry and the structure of the plant-egg interface by scanning electron microscopy confirmed that the plant responds differently to egg deposition by the two lepidopteran species. Our findings imply that prior to actual feeding damage, egg deposition can induce specific plant responses that significantly influence various members of higher trophic levels. PMID:22912893

  6. Element accumulation in boreal bryophytes, lichens and vascular plants exposed to heavy metal and sulfur deposition in Finland.

    PubMed

    Salemaa, Maija; Derome, John; Helmisaari, Heljä-Sisko; Nieminen, Tiina; Vanha-Majamaa, Ilkka

    2004-05-25

    Macronutrient (N, P, K, Mg, S, Ca), heavy metal (Fe, Zn, Mn, Cu, Ni, Cd, Pb) and Al concentrations in understorey bryophytes, lichens and vascular plant species growing in Scots pine forests at four distances from the Harjavalta Cu-Ni smelter (0.5, 2, 4 and 8 km) were compared to those at two background sites in Finland. The aim was to study the relationship between element accumulation and the distribution of the species along a pollution gradient. Elevated sulfur, nitrogen and heavy metal concentrations were found in all species groups near the pollution source. Macronutrient concentrations tended to decrease in the order: vascular plants>bryophytes>lichens, when all the species groups grew on the same plot. Heavy metal concentrations (except Mn) were the highest in bryophytes, followed by lichens, and were the lowest in vascular plants. In general, vascular plants, being capable of restricting the uptake of toxic elements, grew closer to the smelter than lichens, while bryophytes began to increase in the understorey vegetation at further distances from the smelter. A pioneer moss (Pohlia nutans) was an exception, because it accumulated considerably higher amounts of Cu and Ni than the other species and still survived close to the smelter. The abundance of most of the species decreased with increasing Cu and Ni concentrations in their tissues. Cetraria islandica, instead, showed a positive relationship between the abundance and Cu, Ni and S concentrations of the thallus. It is probable that, in addition to heavy metals, sporadically high SO(2) emissions have also affected the distribution of the plant species. PMID:15081702

  7. Beneath the veil: Plant growth form influences the strength of species richness-productivity relationships in forests

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Oberle, B.; Grace, J.B.; Chase, J.M.

    2009-01-01

    Aim: Species richness has been observed to increase with productivity at large spatial scales, though the strength of this relationship varies among functional groups. In forests, canopy trees shade understorey plants, and for this reason we hypothesize that species richness of canopy trees will depend on macroclimate, while species richness of shorter growth forms will additionally be affected by shading from the canopy. In this study we test for differences in species richness-productivity relationships (SRPRs) among growth forms (canopy trees, shrubs, herbaceous species) in small forest plots. Location: We analysed 231 plots ranging from 34.0?? to 48.3?? N latitude and from 75.0?? to 124.2?? W longitude in the United States. Methods: We analysed data collected by the USDA Forest Inventory and Analysis program for plant species richness partitioned into different growth forms, in small plots. We used actual evapotranspiration as a macroclimatic estimate of regional productivity and calculated the area of light-blocking tissue in the immediate area surrounding plots for an estimate of the intensity of local shading. We estimated and compared SRPRs for different partitions of the species richness dataset using generalized linear models and we incorporated the possible indirect effects of shading using a structural equation model. Results: Canopy tree species richness increased strongly with regional productivity, while local shading primarily explained the variation in herbaceous plant richness. Shrub species richness was related to both regional productivity and local shading. Main conclusions: The relationship between total forest plant species richness and productivity at large scales belies strong effects of local interactions. Counter to the pattern for overall richness, we found that understorey herbaceous plant species richness does not respond to regional productivity gradients, and instead is strongly influenced by canopy density, while shrub species

  8. Effects of past burning frequency on plant species structure and composition in dry dipterocarp forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wanthongchai, Dr.; Bauhus, Prof.; Goldammer, Prof.

    2009-04-01

    Anthropogenic burning in dry dipterocarp forests (DDF) has become a common phenomenon throughout Thailand. It is feared that too frequent fires may affect vegetation structure and composition and thus impact on ecosystem productivity. The aim of this study was to quantify the effects of prescribed fires on sites with different past burning regimes on vegetation structure and composition in the Huay Kha Khaeng Wildlife Sanctuary (HKK), Thailand. Fire frequency was determined from satellite images and ranged from frequent, infrequent, rare and unburned with fire occurrences of 7, 2, 1 and 0 out of the past 10 years, respectively. The pre-burn fuel loads, the overstorey and understorey vegetation structure and composition were determined to investigate the effects of the contrasting past burning regimes. The burning experiment was carried out, applying a three-strip head-fire burning technique. The vegetation structure and composition were sampled again one year after the fire to assess the fire impacts. Aboveground fine fuel loads increased with the length of fire-free interval. The woody plant structures of the frequently burned stand differed from those of the other less frequently burned stands. The species composition of the overstorey on the frequently burned site, in particular that of small sized trees (4.5-10 cm dbh), also differed significantly from that of the other sites. Whilst the ground vegetation including shrubs and herbs did not differ between the past burning regimes, frequent burning obviously promoted the proliferation of graminoid vegetation. There was no clear evidence showing that the prescribed fires affected the mortality of trees (dbh> 4.5 cm) on the sites of the different past burning regimes. The effects of prescribed burning on the understorey vegetation structures varied between the past burning regimes and the understorey vegetation type. Therefore, it is recommended that the DDF at HKK should be subjected to a prescribed fire frequency

  9. Salinity and Alkaline pH in Irrigation Water Affect Marigold Plants: II. Mineral Ion Relations

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Scarcity of water of good quality for landscape irrigation is of outmost importance in arid and semiarid regions due to the competition with urban population. This is forcing the use of degraded waters with high levels of salinity and high pH, which may affect plant establishment and growth. The o...

  10. Poisonous plants affecting the central nervous system of horses in Brazil

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Poisoning by Indigofera pascuori was recently reported in horses in the state of Roraima. It causes chronic signs of sleepiness, unsteady gait, severe ataxia, and progressive weight loss. Some animals are blind. Young horses are more affected than adults. After the end of plant consumption the anima...

  11. Cotyledon damage affects seed number through final plant size in the annual grassland species Medicago lupulina

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Shiting; Zhao, Chuan; Lamb, Eric G.

    2011-01-01

    Background and Aims The effects of cotyledon damage on seedling growth and survival are relatively well established, but little is known about the effects on aspects of plant fitness such as seed number and size. Here the direct and indirect mechanisms linking cotyledon damage and plant fitness in the annual species Medicago lupulina are examined. Methods Growth and reproductive traits, including mature plant size, time to first flowering, flower number, seed number and individual seed mass were monitored in M. lupulina plants when zero, one or two cotyledons were removed at 7 d old. Structural equation modelling (SEM) was used to examine the mechanisms linking cotyledon damage to seed number and seed mass. Key Results Cotyledon damage reduced seed number but not individual seed mass. The primary mechanism was a reduction in plant biomass with cotyledon damage that in turn reduced seed number primarily through a reduction in flower numbers. Although cotyledon damage delayed flower initiation, it had little effect on seed number. Individual seed mass was not affected by cotyledon removal, but there was a trade-off between seed number and seed mass. Conclusions It is shown how a network of indirect mechanisms link damage to cotyledons and fitness in M. lupulina. Cotyledon damage had strong direct effects on both plant size and flowering phenology, but an analysis of the causal relationships among plant traits and fitness components showed that a reduction in plant size associated with cotyledon damage was an important mechanism influencing fitness. PMID:21196450

  12. Relative abundance of an invasive alien plant affects insect-flower interaction networks in Ireland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stout, Jane C.; Casey, Leanne M.

    2014-02-01

    Invasive alien flowering plants may affect native plant pollinator interactions and have knock on impacts on populations of native plants and animals. The magnitude of these impacts, however, may be modified by the relative abundance of the invasive plant and the number of flowers it presents.We tested this by examining the structure of insect-flower interaction networks in six sites with increasing levels of invasion by Rhododendron ponticum in Ireland.Neither flower-visiting insect abundance, species richness nor diversity were related to R. ponticum flower abundance, but the composition of insect communities was. The total number of flowers in a site increased with the relative abundance of R. ponticum flowers but the number of co-flowering native plant species in these sites was low (<6), making interaction networks relatively small.As a result, changes in interaction network properties (connectance, interaction evenness and network level specialisation), which correlated with R. ponticum flower abundance, were a result of the small network size rather than due to changes in the resilience of networks.Overall, we conclude that the impacts of invasive alien plants on native plant-pollinator interactions are not only species specific, but site specific, according to the abundance of flowers produced by both the invasive and the native plants.

  13. Plant Volatiles Induced by Herbivore Egg Deposition Affect Insects of Different Trophic Levels

    PubMed Central

    Fatouros, Nina E.; Lucas-Barbosa, Dani; Weldegergis, Berhane T.; Pashalidou, Foteini G.; van Loon, Joop J. A.; Dicke, Marcel; Harvey, Jeffrey A.; Gols, Rieta; Huigens, Martinus E.

    2012-01-01

    Plants release volatiles induced by herbivore feeding that may affect the diversity and composition of plant-associated arthropod communities. However, the specificity and role of plant volatiles induced during the early phase of attack, i.e. egg deposition by herbivorous insects, and their consequences on insects of different trophic levels remain poorly explored. In olfactometer and wind tunnel set-ups, we investigated behavioural responses of a specialist cabbage butterfly (Pieris brassicae) and two of its parasitic wasps (Trichogramma brassicae and Cotesia glomerata) to volatiles of a wild crucifer (Brassica nigra) induced by oviposition of the specialist butterfly and an additional generalist moth (Mamestra brassicae). Gravid butterflies were repelled by volatiles from plants induced by cabbage white butterfly eggs, probably as a means of avoiding competition, whereas both parasitic wasp species were attracted. In contrast, volatiles from plants induced by eggs of the generalist moth did neither repel nor attract any of the tested community members. Analysis of the plant’s volatile metabolomic profile by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry and the structure of the plant-egg interface by scanning electron microscopy confirmed that the plant responds differently to egg deposition by the two lepidopteran species. Our findings imply that prior to actual feeding damage, egg deposition can induce specific plant responses that significantly influence various members of higher trophic levels. PMID:22912893

  14. Inoculation of Transgenic Resistant Potato by Phytophthora infestans Affects Host Plant Choice of a Generalist Moth.

    PubMed

    Abreha, Kibrom B; Alexandersson, Erik; Vossen, Jack H; Anderson, Peter; Andreasson, Erik

    2015-01-01

    Pathogen attack and the plant's response to this attack affect herbivore oviposition preference and larval performance. Introduction of major resistance genes against Phytophthora infestans (Rpi-genes), the cause of the devastating late blight disease, from wild Solanum species into potato changes the plant-pathogen interaction dynamics completely, but little is known about the effects on non-target organisms. Thus, we examined the effect of P. infestans itself and introduction of an Rpi-gene into the crop on host plant preference of the generalist insect herbivore, Spodoptera littoralis (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae). In two choice bioassays, S. littoralis preferred to oviposit on P. infestans-inoculated plants of both the susceptible potato (cv. Desiree) and an isogenic resistant clone (A01-22: cv. Desiree transformed with Rpi-blb1), when compared to uninoculated plants of the same genotype. Both cv. Desiree and clone A01-22 were equally preferred for oviposition by S. littoralis when uninoculated plants were used, while cv. Desiree received more eggs compared to the resistant clone when both were inoculated with the pathogen. No significant difference in larval and pupal weight was found between S. littoralis larvae reared on leaves of the susceptible potato plants inoculated or uninoculated with P. infestans. Thus, the herbivore's host plant preference in this system was not directly associated with larval performance. The results indicate that the Rpi-blb1 based resistance in itself does not influence insect behavior, but that herbivore oviposition preference is affected by a change in the plant-microbe interaction. PMID:26053171

  15. How Do Earthworms, Soil Texture and Plant Composition Affect Infiltration along an Experimental Plant Diversity Gradient in Grassland?

    PubMed Central

    Fischer, Christine; Roscher, Christiane; Jensen, Britta; Eisenhauer, Nico; Baade, Jussi; Attinger, Sabine; Scheu, Stefan; Weisser, Wolfgang W.; Schumacher, Jens; Hildebrandt, Anke

    2014-01-01

    Background Infiltration is a key process in determining the water balance, but so far effects of earthworms, soil texture, plant species diversity and their interaction on infiltration capacity have not been studied. Methodology/Principal Findings We measured infiltration capacity in subplots with ambient and reduced earthworm density nested in plots of different plant species (1, 4, and 16 species) and plant functional group richness and composition (1 to 4 groups; legumes, grasses, small herbs, tall herbs). In summer, earthworm presence significantly increased infiltration, whereas in fall effects of grasses and legumes on infiltration were due to plant-mediated changes in earthworm biomass. Effects of grasses and legumes on infiltration even reversed effects of texture. We propose two pathways: (i) direct, probably by modifying the pore spectrum and (ii) indirect, by enhancing or suppressing earthworm biomass, which in turn influenced infiltration capacity due to change in burrowing activity of earthworms. Conclusions/Significance Overall, the results suggest that spatial and temporal variations in soil hydraulic properties can be explained by biotic processes, especially the presence of certain plant functional groups affecting earthworm biomass, while soil texture had no significant effect. Therefore biotic parameters should be taken into account in hydrological applications. PMID:24918943

  16. Quantification of Heavy Metals in Mining Affected Soil and Their Bioaccumulation in Native Plant Species.

    PubMed

    Nawab, Javed; Khan, Sardar; Shah, Mohammad Tahir; Khan, Kifayatullah; Huang, Qing; Ali, Roshan

    2015-01-01

    Several anthropogenic and natural sources are considered as the primary sources of toxic metals in the environment. The current study investigates the level of heavy metals contamination in the flora associated with serpentine soil along the Mafic and Ultramafic rocks northern-Pakistan. Soil and wild native plant species were collected from chromites mining affected areas and analyzed for heavy metals (Cr, Ni, Fe, Mn, Co, Cu and Zn) using atomic absorption spectrometer (AAS-PEA-700). The heavy metal concentrations were significantly (p < 0.01) higher in mine affected soil as compared to reference soil, however Cr and Ni exceeded maximum allowable limit (250 and 60 mg kg(-1), respectively) set by SEPA for soil. Inter-metal correlations between soil, roots and shoots showed that the sources of contamination of heavy metals were mainly associated with chromites mining. All the plant species accumulated significantly higher concentrations of heavy metals as compared to reference plant. The open dumping of mine wastes can create serious problems (food crops and drinking water contamination with heavy metals) for local community of the study area. The native wild plant species (Nepeta cataria, Impatiens bicolor royle, Tegetis minuta) growing on mining affected sites may be used for soil reclamation contaminated with heavy metals. PMID:26079739

  17. Plant sterols: factors affecting their efficacy and safety as functional food ingredients

    PubMed Central

    Berger, Alvin; Jones, Peter JH; Abumweis, Suhad S

    2004-01-01

    Plant sterols are naturally occurring molecules that humanity has evolved with. Herein, we have critically evaluated recent literature pertaining to the myriad of factors affecting efficacy and safety of plant sterols in free and esterified forms. We conclude that properly solubilized 4-desmetyl plant sterols, in ester or free form, in reasonable doses (0.8–1.0 g of equivalents per day) and in various vehicles including natural sources, and as part of a healthy diet and lifestyle, are important dietary components for lowering low density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol and maintaining good heart health. In addition to their cholesterol lowering properties, plant sterols possess anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory, anti-atherogenicity, and anti-oxidation activities, and should thus be of clinical importance, even for those individuals without elevated LDL cholesterol. The carotenoid lowering effect of plant sterols should be corrected by increasing intake of food that is rich in carotenoids. In pregnant and lactating women and children, further study is needed to verify the dose required to decrease blood cholesterol without affecting fat-soluble vitamins and carotenoid status. PMID:15070410

  18. Carbon storage potential by four macrophytes as affected by planting diversity in a created wetland.

    PubMed

    Means, Mary M; Ahn, Changwoo; Korol, Alicia R; Williams, Lisa D

    2016-01-01

    Wetland creation has become a commonplace method for mitigating the loss of natural wetlands. Often mitigation projects fail to restore ecosystem services of the impacted natural wetlands. One of the key ecosystem services of newly created wetlands is carbon accumulation/sequestration, but little is known about how planting diversity (PD) affects the ability of herbaceous wetland plants to store carbon in newly created wetlands. Most mitigation projects involve a planting regime, but PD, which may be critical in establishing biologically diverse and ecologically functioning wetlands, is seldom required. Using a set of 34 mesocosms (∼1 m(2) each), we investigated the effects of planting diversity on carbon storage potential of four native wetland plant species that are commonly planted in created mitigation wetlands in Virginia - Carex vulpinoidea, Eleocharis obtusa, Juncus effusus, and Mimulus ringens. The plants were grown under the four distinctive PD treatments [i.e., monoculture (PD 1) through four different species mixture (PD 4)]. Plant biomass was harvested after two growing seasons and analyzed for tissue carbon content. Competition values (CV) were calculated to understand how the PD treatment affected the competitive ability of plants relative to their biomass production and thus carbon storage potentials. Aboveground biomass ranged from 988 g/m(2) - 1515 g/m(2), being greatest in monocultures, but only when compared to the most diverse mixture (p = 0.021). However, carbon storage potential estimates per mesocosm ranged between 344 g C/m(2) in the most diverse mesocosms (PD 4) to 610 g C/m(2) in monoculture ones with no significant difference (p = 0.089). CV of E. obtusa and C. vulpinoidea showed a declining trend when grown in the most diverse mixtures but J. effusus and M. ringens displayed no difference across the PD gradient (p = 0.910). In monocultures, both M. ringens, and J. effusus appeared to store carbon as biomass more

  19. Plant-bacteria bioremediation agents affect the response of plant bioindicators independent of 2-chlorobenzoic acid degradation

    SciTech Connect

    Siciliano, S.D.; Germida, J.J.

    1995-12-31

    Plants are known to degrade toxicants in soil and are potentially useful bioremediation agents. The authors developed plant-bacteria associations (e.g., Meadow brome [Bromus riparius] and Pseudomonas aeruginosa strain R75) that degrade 2-chlorobenzoic acid (2CBA) in soil, and assessed their success using Slender wheatgrass (Agropyron trachycaulum) germination as a bioindicator of 2CBA levels. Gas chromatography was used to chemically assess 2CBA levels. Specific plant-bacteria bioremediation treatments decreased soil 2CBA levels by 17 to 52%, but bioindicator response did not correspond to chemical analysis. Contaminated and uncontaminated soil was subjected to bioremediation treatments. After 42 days, uncontaminated soil was collected and amended to various 2CBA levels. This soil and the remediated soil were analyzed by the plant bioindicator and gas chromatography. Bioremediation treatments altered germination of Slender wheatgrass in both contaminated and noncontaminated soils to a similar extent. These treatments decreased the toxicity of 2CBA to Slender wheatgrass in both contaminated and noncontaminated soils to a similar extent. These treatments decreased the toxicity of 2CBA to Slender wheatgrass at low 2CBA levels, but increased the toxicity of 2CBA at high 2CBA levels. For example, germination in soil subjected to the Meadow brome and R75 treatment was increased by ca. 30% at 50 mg kg{sup {minus}1} 2CBA, but decreased by ca. 50% at 150 mg kg{sup {minus}1} 2CBA. The results indicate that specific plant-bacteria bioremediation treatments affect plant bioindicator response independent of 2CBA degradation, and may confound efforts to determine the toxicity of 2CBA in soil.

  20. Dioecy, more than monoecy, affects plant spatial genetic structure: the case study of Ficus

    PubMed Central

    Nazareno, Alison G; Alzate-Marin, Ana L; Pereira, Rodrigo Augusto S

    2013-01-01

    In this analysis, we attempt to understand how monoecy and dioecy drive spatial genetic structure (SGS) in plant populations. For this purpose, plants of the genus Ficus were used as a comparative model due to their particular characteristics, including high species diversity, variation in life histories, and sexual systems. One of the main issues we assessed is whether dioecious fig tree populations are more spatially genetically structured than monoecious populations. Using the Sp statistic, which allows for quantitative comparisons among different studies, we compared the extent of SGS between monoecious and dioecious Ficus species. To broaden our conclusions we used published data on an additional 27 monoecious and dioecious plant species. Furthermore, genetic diversity analyses were performed for two monoecious Ficus species using 12 microsatellite markers in order to strengthen our conclusions about SGS. Our results show that dioecy, more than monoecy, significantly contributes to SGS in plant populations. On average, the estimate of Sp was six times higher for dioecious Ficus species than monoecious Ficus species and it was two times higher in dioecious than monoecious plant species. Considering these results, we emphasize that the long-distance pollen dispersal mechanism in monoecious Ficus species seems to be the dominant factor in determining weak spatial genetic structure, high levels of genetic diversity, and lack of inbreeding. Although Ficus constitute a model species to study SGS, a more general comparison encompassing a wider range of plants is required in order to better understand how sexual systems affect genetic structure. PMID:24223285

  1. Does a decade of elevated [CO2] affect a desert perennial plant community?

    PubMed

    Newingham, Beth A; Vanier, Cheryl H; Kelly, Lauren J; Charlet, Therese N; Smith, Stanley D

    2014-01-01

    Understanding the effects of elevated [CO2 ] on plant community structure is crucial to predicting ecosystem responses to global change. Early predictions suggested that productivity in deserts would increase via enhanced water-use efficiency under elevated [CO2], but the response of intact arid plant communities to elevated [CO2 ] is largely unknown. We measured changes in perennial plant community characteristics (cover, species richness and diversity) after 10 yr of elevated [CO2] exposure in an intact Mojave Desert community at the Nevada Desert Free-Air CO2 Enrichment (FACE) Facility. Contrary to expectations, total cover, species richness, and diversity were not affected by elevated [CO2]. Over the course of the experiment, elevated [CO2] had no effect on changes in cover of the evergreen C3 shrub, Larrea tridentata; alleviated decreases in cover of the C4 bunchgrass, Pleuraphis rigida; and slightly reduced the cover of C3 drought-deciduous shrubs. Thus, we generally found no effect of elevated [CO2] on plant communities in this arid ecosystem. Extended drought, slow plant growth rates, and highly episodic germination and recruitment of new individuals explain the lack of strong perennial plant community shifts after a decade of elevated [CO2]. PMID:24117700

  2. Plant hybrid zones affect biodiversity: Tools for a genetic-based understanding of community structure

    SciTech Connect

    Whitham, T.G.; Martinsen, G.D.; Keim, P.; Floate, K.D.; Dungey, H.S. |; Potts, B.M.

    1999-03-01

    Plant hybrid zones are dynamic centers of ecological and evolutionary processes for plants and their associated communities. Studies in the wild and in gardens with synthetic crosses showed that hybrid eucalypts supports the greatest species richness and abundances of insect and fungal taxa. In an updated review of 152 case studies of taxa associated with diverse hybridizing systems, there were 43 (28%) cases of hybrids being more susceptible than their parent species, 7 (5%) resistant, 35 (23%) additive, 35 (23%) dominant, and 32 (21%) showed no response to hybridization. Thus, most taxa respond to hybrids in ways that result in equal or greater abundance, and hybrids tend to accumulate the taxa of their parent species. These studies suggest that genetic-based plant traits affect the distribution of many species and that the variation in hybrids can be used as tools to examine the genetic components of community structure and biodiversity.

  3. Feeding Experience of Bemisia tabaci (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae) Affects Their Performance on Different Host Plants

    PubMed Central

    Shah, M. Mostafizur Rahman; Liu, Tong-Xian

    2013-01-01

    The sweetpotato whitefly, Bemisia tabaci biotype B is extremely polyphagous with >600 species of host plants. We hypothesized that previous experience of the whitefly on a given host plant affects their host selection and performance on the plants without previous experience. We investigated the host selection for feeding and oviposition of adults and development and survival of immatures of three host-plant-experienced populations of B. tabaci, namely Bemisia-eggplant, Bemisia-tomato and Bemisia-cucumber, on their experienced host plant and each of the three other plant species (eggplant, tomato, cucumber and pepper) without previous experience. We found that the influence of previous experience of the whiteflies varied among the populations. All populations refused pepper for feeding and oviposition, whereas the Bemisia-cucumber and the Bemisia-eggplant strongly preferred cucumber. Bemisia-tomato did not show strong preference to any of the three host palnts. Development time from egg to adult eclosion varied among the populations, being shortest on eggplant, longest on pepper, and intermediate on tomato and cucumber except for the Bemisia-cucumber developed similarly on tomato and pepper. The survivorship from egg to adult eclosion of all populations was highest on eggplant (80-98%), lowest on pepper (0-20%), and intermediate on tomato and cucumber. In conclusion, the effects of previous experience of whiteflies on host selection for feeding and oviposition, development, and survivorship varied depending on host plants, and host plants play a stronger role than previous experience. Preference of feeding and oviposition by adults may not accurately reflect host suitability of immatures. These results provided important information for understanding whitefly population dynamics and dispersal among different crop systems. PMID:24146985

  4. Factors Affecting the Distribution Pattern of Wild Plants with Extremely Small Populations in Hainan Island, China

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Yukai; Yang, Xiaobo; Yang, Qi; Li, Donghai; Long, Wenxing; Luo, Wenqi

    2014-01-01

    Understanding which factors affect the distribution pattern of extremely small populations is essential to the protection and propagation of rare and endangered plant species. In this study, we established 108 plots covering the entire Hainan Island, and measured the appearance frequency and species richness of plant species with extremely small populations, as well as the ecological environments and human disturbances during 2012–2013. We explored how the ecological environments and human activities affected the distribution pattern of these extremely small populations. Results showed that the extremely small populations underwent human disturbances and threats, and they were often found in fragmental habitats. The leading factors changing the appearance frequency of extremely small populations differed among plant species, and the direct factors making them susceptible to extinction were human disturbances. The peak richness of extremely small populations always occurred at the medium level across environmental gradients, and their species richness always decreased with increasing human disturbances. However, the appearance frequencies of three orchid species increased with the increasing human disturbances. Our study thus indicate that knowledge on how the external factors, such as the ecological environment, land use type, roads, human activity, etc., affect the distribution of the extremely small populations should be taken for the better protecting them in the future. PMID:24830683

  5. Factors affecting the distribution pattern of wild plants with extremely small populations in Hainan Island, China.

    PubMed

    Chen, Yukai; Yang, Xiaobo; Yang, Qi; Li, Donghai; Long, Wenxing; Luo, Wenqi

    2014-01-01

    Understanding which factors affect the distribution pattern of extremely small populations is essential to the protection and propagation of rare and endangered plant species. In this study, we established 108 plots covering the entire Hainan Island, and measured the appearance frequency and species richness of plant species with extremely small populations, as well as the ecological environments and human disturbances during 2012-2013. We explored how the ecological environments and human activities affected the distribution pattern of these extremely small populations. Results showed that the extremely small populations underwent human disturbances and threats, and they were often found in fragmental habitats. The leading factors changing the appearance frequency of extremely small populations differed among plant species, and the direct factors making them susceptible to extinction were human disturbances. The peak richness of extremely small populations always occurred at the medium level across environmental gradients, and their species richness always decreased with increasing human disturbances. However, the appearance frequencies of three orchid species increased with the increasing human disturbances. Our study thus indicate that knowledge on how the external factors, such as the ecological environment, land use type, roads, human activity, etc., affect the distribution of the extremely small populations should be taken for the better protecting them in the future. PMID:24830683

  6. Modulation of Ethylene Responses Affects Plant Salt-Stress Responses1[OA

    PubMed Central

    Cao, Wan-Hong; Liu, Jun; He, Xin-Jian; Mu, Rui-Ling; Zhou, Hua-Lin; Chen, Shou-Yi; Zhang, Jin-Song

    2007-01-01

    Ethylene signaling plays important roles in multiple aspects of plant growth and development. Its functions in abiotic stress responses remain largely unknown. Here, we report that alteration of ethylene signaling affected plant salt-stress responses. A type II ethylene receptor homolog gene NTHK1 (Nicotiana tabacum histidine kinase 1) from tobacco (N. tabacum) conferred salt sensitivity in NTHK1-transgenic Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) plants as judged from the phenotypic change, the relative electrolyte leakage, and the relative root growth under salt stress. Ethylene precursor 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylic acid suppressed the salt-sensitive phenotype. Analysis of Arabidopsis ethylene receptor gain-of-function mutants further suggests that receptor function may lead to salt-sensitive responses. Mutation of EIN2, a central component in ethylene signaling, also results in salt sensitivity, suggesting that EIN2-mediated signaling is beneficial for plant salt tolerance. Overexpression of the NTHK1 gene or the receptor gain-of-function activated expression of salt-responsive genes AtERF4 and Cor6.6. In addition, the transgene NTHK1 mRNA was accumulated under salt stress, suggesting a posttranscriptional regulatory mechanism. These findings imply that ethylene signaling may be required for plant salt tolerance. PMID:17189334

  7. Can corn plants inoculated with arbuscular mycorrhiza fungi affect soil clay assemblage?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adamo, P.; Cozzolino, V.; Di Meo, V.; Velde, B.

    2012-04-01

    Plants can extract K from exchangeable and non-exchangeable sites in the soil clay mineral structures. The latter, known as fixed K, is usually seen as an illite layer, i.e. an anhydrous K layer that forms a 1.0 nm structural layer unit as seen by X-ray diffraction. Nutrient availability can be enhanced in the root zone by arbuscular mycorrhiza fungi. In this study, the effects of non-inoculated and Glomus intraradices inoculated corn plant growth under different experimental conditions on soil K-bearing clay minerals were identified. The soil, a Vertic Xerofluvent, was planted in corn in a 2008-2010 randomized field experiment. Bulk and rhizosphere soil sampling was carried out from May to September 2010 from fertilized plots (N200P90K160 and N200P0K160) with and without plants. According to XRD analysis, three major K-bearing minerals were present in soil: smectite-rich mixed layer mineral, illite-rich mixed layer mineral and illite. Results at 40DAS indicate extraction of K from clay minerals by plant uptake, whereas at 130DAS much of the nutrient seems to be returned to the soil. There is an apparent difference between bulk and rhizophere clays. The XRD patterns are not unequivocally affected by Glomus inoculation. There are observable changes in clay mineralogy in fallow unfertilized compared with fertilized soil. In the studied soil, the illite rich mixed-layer minerals seem to be the source of K absorbed by plants, while illite acts as sink of K released from the plant-microorganisms system at the end of the growing season and as source for the following crop.

  8. CLIMATE CONDITIONS AFFECTING THE WITHIN-PLANT SPREAD OF BROAD MITES ON AZALEA.

    PubMed

    Mechant, E; Pauwels, E; Gobin, B

    2014-01-01

    The broad mite Polyphagotarsonemus latus (Banks) is considered a major pest in potted azalea, Flanders' flagship ornamental crop of Rhododendron simsii hybrids. In addition to severe economic damage, the broad mite is dreaded for its increasing resistance to acaricides. Due to restrictions in the use of broad spectrum acaricides, Belgian azalea growers are left with only three compounds, belonging to two mode of action groups and restricted in their number of applications, for broad mite control: abamectin, milbemectin and pyrethrin. Although P. latus can be controlled with predatory mites, the high cost of this system makes it (not yet) feasible for integration into standard azalea pest management systems. Hence, a maximum efficacy of treatments with available compounds is essential. Because abamectin, milbemectin and pyrethrin are contact acaricides with limited trans laminar flow, only broad mites located on shoot tips of azalea plants will be controlled after spraying. Consequently, the efficacy of chemical treatments is influenced by the location and spread of P. latus on the plant. Unfortunately, little is known on broad mites' within-plant spread or how it is affected by climatic conditions like temperature and relative humidity. Therefore, experiments were set up to verify whether climate conditions have an effect on the location and migration of broad mites on azalea. Broad mite infected azalea plants were placed in standard growth chambers under different temperature (T:2.5-25°C) and relative humidity (RH:55-80%) treatments. Within-plant spread was determined by counting mites on the shoot tips and inner leaves of azalea plants. Results indicate that temperature and relative humidity have no significant effect on the within-plant spread of P. latus. To formulate recommendations for optimal spray conditions to maximize the efficacy of broad mite control with acaricides, further experiments on the effect of light intensity and rain are scheduled. PMID

  9. Quantifying understorey vegetation in the US Lake States: a proposed framework to inform regional forest carbon stocks

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Russell, Matthew B.; D'Amato, Anthony W.; Schulz, Bethany K.; Woodall, Christopher W.; Domke, Grant M.; Bradford, John B.

    2014-01-01

    The contribution of understorey vegetation (UVEG) to forest ecosystem biomass and carbon (C) across diverse forest types has, to date, eluded quantification at regional and national scales. Efforts to quantify UVEG C have been limited to field-intensive studies or broad-scale modelling approaches lacking field measurements. Although large-scale inventories of UVEG C are not common, species- and community-level inventories of vegetation structure are available and may prove useful in quantifying UVEG C stocks. This analysis developed a general framework for estimating UVEG C stocks by employing per cent cover estimates of UVEG from a region-wide forest inventory coupled with an estimate of maximum UVEG C across the US Lake States (i.e. Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin). Estimates of UVEG C stocks from this approach reasonably align with expected C stocks in the study region, ranging from 0.86 ± 0.06 Mg ha-1 in red pine-dominated to 1.59 ± 0.06 Mg ha-1 for aspen/birch-dominated forest types. Although the data employed here were originally collected to assess broad-scale forest structure and diversity, this study proposes a framework for using UVEG inventories as a foundation for estimating C stocks in an often overlooked, yet important ecosystem C pool.

  10. How plant architecture affects light absorption and photosynthesis in tomato: towards an ideotype for plant architecture using a functional–structural plant model

    PubMed Central

    Sarlikioti, V.; de Visser, P. H. B.; Buck-Sorlin, G. H.; Marcelis, L. F. M.

    2011-01-01

    Background and Aims Manipulation of plant structure can strongly affect light distribution in the canopy and photosynthesis. The aim of this paper is to find a plant ideotype for optimization of light absorption and canopy photosynthesis. Using a static functional structural plant model (FSPM), a range of different plant architectural characteristics was tested for two different seasons in order to find the optimal architecture with respect to light absorption and photosynthesis. Methods Simulations were performed with an FSPM of a greenhouse-grown tomato crop. Sensitivity analyses were carried out for leaf elevation angle, leaf phyllotaxis, leaflet angle, leaf shape, leaflet arrangement and internode length. From the results of this analysis two possible ideotypes were proposed. Four different vertical light distributions were also tested, while light absorption cumulated over the whole canopy was kept the same. Key Results Photosynthesis was augmented by 6 % in winter and reduced by 7 % in summer, when light absorption in the top part of the canopy was increased by 25 %, while not changing light absorption of the canopy as a whole. The measured plant structure was already optimal with respect to leaf elevation angle, leaflet angle and leaflet arrangement for both light absorption and photosynthesis while phyllotaxis had no effect. Increasing the length : width ratio of leaves by 1·5 or increasing internode length from 7 cm to 12 cm led to an increase of 6–10 % for light absorption and photosynthesis. Conclusions At high light intensities (summer) deeper penetration of light in the canopy improves crop photosynthesis, but not at low light intensities (winter). In particular, internode length and leaf shape affect the vertical distribution of light in the canopy. A new plant ideotype with more spacious canopy architecture due to long internodes and long and narrow leaves led to an increase in crop photosynthesis of up to 10 %. PMID:21865217

  11. Sitona lineatus (Coleoptera: Curculionidae) Larval Feeding on Pisum sativum L. Affects Soil and Plant Nitrogen.

    PubMed

    Cárcamo, Héctor A; Herle, Carolyn E; Lupwayi, Newton Z

    2015-01-01

    Adults of Sitona lineatus (pea leaf weevil, PLW) feed on foliage of several Fabaceae species but larvae prefer to feed on nodules of Pisum sativum L. and Vicia faba L. Indirectly, through their feeding on rhizobia, weevils can reduce soil and plant available nitrogen (N). However, initial soil N can reduce nodulation and damage by the weevil and reduce control requirements. Understanding these interactions is necessary to make integrated pest management recommendations for PLW. We conducted a greenhouse study to quantify nodulation, soil and plant N content, and nodule damage by weevil larvae in relation to soil N amendment with urea, thiamethoxam insecticide seed coating and crop stage. PLWs reduced the number of older tumescent (multilobed) nodules and thiamethoxam addition increased them regardless of other factors. Nitrogen amendment significantly increased soil available N (>99% nitrate) as expected and PLW presence was associated with significantly lower levels of soil N. PLW decreased plant N content at early flower and thiamethoxam increased it, particularly at late flower. The study illustrated the complexity of interactions that determine insect herbivory effects on plant and soil nutrition for invertebrates that feed on N-fixing root nodules. We conclude that effects of PLW on nodulation and subsequent effects on plant nitrogen are more pronounced during the early growth stages of the plant. This suggests the importance of timing of PLW infestation and may explain the lack of yield depression in relation to this pest observed in many field studies. Also, pea crops in soils with high levels of soil N are unlikely to be affected by this herbivore and should not require insecticide inputs. PMID:26106086

  12. Sitona lineatus (Coleoptera: Curculionidae) Larval Feeding on Pisum sativum L. Affects Soil and Plant Nitrogen

    PubMed Central

    Cárcamo, Héctor A.; Herle, Carolyn E.; Lupwayi, Newton Z.

    2015-01-01

    Adults of Sitona lineatus (pea leaf weevil, PLW) feed on foliage of several Fabaceae species but larvae prefer to feed on nodules of Pisum sativum L. and Vicia faba L. Indirectly, through their feeding on rhizobia, weevils can reduce soil and plant available nitrogen (N). However, initial soil N can reduce nodulation and damage by the weevil and reduce control requirements. Understanding these interactions is necessary to make integrated pest management recommendations for PLW. We conducted a greenhouse study to quantify nodulation, soil and plant N content, and nodule damage by weevil larvae in relation to soil N amendment with urea, thiamethoxam insecticide seed coating and crop stage. PLWs reduced the number of older tumescent (multilobed) nodules and thiamethoxam addition increased them regardless of other factors. Nitrogen amendment significantly increased soil available N (>99% nitrate) as expected and PLW presence was associated with significantly lower levels of soil N. PLW decreased plant N content at early flower and thiamethoxam increased it, particularly at late flower. The study illustrated the complexity of interactions that determine insect herbivory effects on plant and soil nutrition for invertebrates that feed on N-fixing root nodules. We conclude that effects of PLW on nodulation and subsequent effects on plant nitrogen are more pronounced during the early growth stages of the plant. This suggests the importance of timing of PLW infestation and may explain the lack of yield depression in relation to this pest observed in many field studies. Also, pea crops in soils with high levels of soil N are unlikely to be affected by this herbivore and should not require insecticide inputs. PMID:26106086

  13. Colorimetric Method for Identifying Plant Essential Oil Components That Affect Biofilm Formation and Structure

    PubMed Central

    Niu, C.; Gilbert, E. S.

    2004-01-01

    The specific biofilm formation (SBF) assay, a technique based on crystal violet staining, was developed to locate plant essential oils and their components that affect biofilm formation. SBF analysis determined that cinnamon, cassia, and citronella oils differentially affected growth-normalized biofilm formation by Escherichia coli. Examination of the corresponding essential oil principal components by the SBF assay revealed that cinnamaldehyde decreased biofilm formation compared to biofilms grown in Luria-Bertani broth, eugenol did not result in a change, and citronellol increased the SBF. To evaluate these results, two microscopy-based assays were employed. First, confocal laser scanning microscopy (CLSM) was used to examine E. coli biofilms cultivated in flow cells, which were quantitatively analyzed by COMSTAT, an image analysis program. The overall trend for five parameters that characterize biofilm development corroborated the findings of the SBF assay. Second, the results of an assay measuring growth-normalized adhesion by direct microscopy concurred with the results of the SBF assay and CLSM imaging. Viability staining indicated that there was reduced toxicity of the essential oil components to cells in biofilms compared to the toxicity to planktonic cells but revealed morphological damage to E. coli after cinnamaldehyde exposure. Cinnamaldehyde also inhibited the swimming motility of E. coli. SBF analysis of three Pseudomonas species exposed to cinnamaldehyde, eugenol, or citronellol revealed diverse responses. The SBF assay could be useful as an initial step for finding plant essential oils and their components that affect biofilm formation and structure. PMID:15574886

  14. Population variation affects interactions between two California salt marsh plant species more than precipitation.

    PubMed

    Noto, Akana E; Shurin, Jonathan B

    2016-02-01

    Species that occur along broad environmental gradients often vary in phenotypic traits that make them better adapted to local conditions. Variation in species interactions across gradients could therefore be due to either phenotypic differences among populations or environmental conditions that shift the balance between competition and facilitation. To understand how the environment (precipitation) and variation among populations affect species interactions, we conducted a common garden experiment using two common salt marsh plant species, Salicornia pacifica and Jaumea carnosa, from six salt marshes along the California coast encompassing a large precipitation gradient. Plants were grown alone or with an individual of the opposite species from the same site and exposed to one of three precipitation regimes. J. carnosa was negatively affected in the presence of S. pacifica, while S. pacifica was facilitated by J. carnosa. The strength of these interactions varied by site of origin but not by precipitation treatment. These results suggest that phenotypic variation among populations can affect interaction strength more than environment, despite a threefold difference in precipitation. Geographic intraspecific variation may therefore play an important role in determining the strength of interactions in communities. PMID:26481794

  15. Common gas phase molecules from fungi affect seed germination and plant health in Arabidopsis thaliana

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Fungal volatile organic compounds (VOCs) play important ecophysiological roles in mediating inter-kingdom signaling with arthropods but less is known about their interactions with plants. In this study, Arabidopsis thaliana was used as a model in order to test the physiological effects of 23 common vapor-phase fungal VOCs that included alcohols, aldehydes, ketones, and other chemical classes. After exposure to a shared atmosphere with the 23 individual VOCs for 72 hrs, seeds were assayed for rate of germination and seedling formation; vegetative plants were assayed for fresh weight and chlorophyll concentration. All but five of the VOCs tested (1-decene, 2-n-heptylfuran, nonanal, geosmin and -limonene) had a significant effect in inhibiting either germination, seedling formation or both. Seedling formation was entirely inhibited by exposure to 1-octen-3-one, 2-ethylhexanal, 3-methylbutanal, and butanal. As assayed by a combination of fresh weight and chlorophyll concentration, 2-ethylhexanal had a negative impact on two-week-old vegetative plants. Three other compounds (1-octen-3-ol, 2-ethylhexanal, and 2-heptylfuran) decreased fresh weight alone. Most of the VOCs tested did not change the fresh weight or chlorophyll concentration of vegetative plants. In summary, when tested as single compounds, fungal VOCs affected A. thaliana in positive, negative or neutral ways. PMID:25045602

  16. Different Degrees of Plant Invasion Significantly Affect the Richness of the Soil Fungal Community

    PubMed Central

    Si, Chuncan; Liu, Xueyan; Wang, Congyan; Wang, Lei; Dai, Zhicong; Qi, Shanshan; Du, Daolin

    2013-01-01

    Several studies have shown that soil microorganisms play a key role in the success of plant invasion. Thus, ecologists have become increasingly interested in understanding the ecological effects of biological invasion on soil microbial communities given continuing increase in the effects of invasive plants on native ecosystems. This paper aims to provide a relatively complete depiction of the characteristics of soil microbial communities under different degrees of plant invasion. Rhizospheric soils of the notorious invasive plant Wedelia trilobata with different degrees of invasion (uninvaded, low-degree, and high-degree using its coverage in the invaded ecosystems) were collected from five discrete areas in Hainan Province, P. R. China. Soil physicochemical properties and community structure of soil microorganisms were assessed. Low degrees of W. trilobata invasion significantly increased soil pH values whereas high degrees of invasion did not significantly affected soil pH values. Moreover, the degree of W. trilobata invasion exerted significant effects on soil Ca concentration but did not significantly change other indices of soil physicochemical properties. Low and high degrees of W. trilobata invasion increased the richness of the soil fungal community but did not pose obvious effects on the soil bacterial community. W. trilobata invasion also exerted obvious effects on the community structure of soil microorganisms that take part in soil nitrogen cycling. These changes in soil physicochemical properties and community structure of soil microbial communities mediated by different degrees of W. trilobata invasion may present significant functions in further facilitating the invasion process. PMID:24392015

  17. Plant species richness and functional traits affect community stability after a flood event.

    PubMed

    Fischer, Felícia M; Wright, Alexandra J; Eisenhauer, Nico; Ebeling, Anne; Roscher, Christiane; Wagg, Cameron; Weigelt, Alexandra; Weisser, Wolfgang W; Pillar, Valério D

    2016-05-19

    Climate change is expected to increase the frequency and magnitude of extreme weather events. It is therefore of major importance to identify the community attributes that confer stability in ecological communities during such events. In June 2013, a flood event affected a plant diversity experiment in Central Europe (Jena, Germany). We assessed the effects of plant species richness, functional diversity, flooding intensity and community means of functional traits on different measures of stability (resistance, resilience and raw biomass changes from pre-flood conditions). Surprisingly, plant species richness reduced community resistance in response to the flood. This was mostly because more diverse communities grew more immediately following the flood. Raw biomass increased over the previous year; this resulted in decreased absolute value measures of resistance. There was no clear response pattern for resilience. We found that functional traits drove these changes in raw biomass: communities with a high proportion of late-season, short-statured plants with dense, shallow roots and small leaves grew more following the flood. Late-growing species probably avoided the flood, whereas greater root length density might have allowed species to better access soil resources brought from the flood, thus growing more in the aftermath. We conclude that resource inputs following mild floods may favour the importance of traits related to resource acquisition and be less associated with flooding tolerance. PMID:27114578

  18. Ozone affects gas exchange, growth and reproductive development in Brassica campestris (Wisconsin fast plants).

    PubMed

    Black, V J; Stewart, C A; Roberts, J A; Black, C R

    2007-01-01

    Exposure to ozone (O(3)) may affect vegetative and reproductive development, although the consequences for yield depend on the effectiveness of the compensatory processes induced. This study examined the impact on reproductive development of exposing Brassica campestris (Wisconsin Fast Plants) to ozone during vegetative growth. Plants were exposed to 70 ppb ozone for 2 d during late vegetative growth or 10 d spanning most of the vegetative phase. Effects on gas exchange, vegetative growth, reproductive development and seed yield were determined. Impacts on gas exchange and foliar injury were related to pre-exposure stomatal conductance. Exposure for 2 d had no effect on growth or reproductive characteristics, whereas 10-d exposure reduced vegetative growth and reproductive site number on the terminal raceme. Mature seed number and weight per pod and per plant were unaffected because seed abortion was reduced. The observation that mature seed yield per plant was unaffected by exposure during the vegetative phase, despite adverse effects on physiological, vegetative and reproductive processes, shows that indeterminate species such as B. campestris possess sufficient compensatory flexibility to avoid reductions in seed production. PMID:17803646

  19. A hyperparasite affects the population dynamics of a wild plant pathogen

    PubMed Central

    Tollenaere, C; Pernechele, B; Mäkinen, H S; Parratt, S R; Németh, M Z; Kovács, G M; Kiss, L; Tack, A J M; Laine, A-L

    2014-01-01

    Assessing the impact of natural enemies of plant and animal pathogens on their host's population dynamics is needed to determine the role of hyperparasites in affecting disease dynamics, and their potential for use in efficient control strategies of pathogens. Here, we focus on the long-term study describing metapopulation dynamics of an obligate pathogen, the powdery mildew (Podosphaera plantaginis) naturally infecting its wild host plant (Plantago lanceolata) in the fragmented landscape of the Åland archipelago (southwest Finland). Regionally, the pathogen persists through a balance of extinctions and colonizations, yet factors affecting extinction rates remain poorly understood. Mycoparasites of the genus Ampelomyces appear as good candidates for testing the role of a hyperparasite, i.e. a parasite of other parasites, in the regulation of their fungal hosts' population dynamics. For this purpose, we first designed a quantitative PCR assay for detection of Ampelomyces spp. in field-collected samples. This newly developed molecular test was then applied to a large-scale sampling within the Åland archipelago, revealing that Ampelomyces is a widespread hyperparasite in this system, with high variability in prevalence among populations. We found that the hyperparasite was more common on leaves where multiple powdery mildew strains coexist, a pattern that may be attributed to differential exposure. Moreover, the prevalence of Ampelomyces at the plant level negatively affected the overwinter survival of its fungal host. We conclude that this hyperparasite may likely impact on its host population dynamics and argue for increased focus on the role of hyperparasites in disease dynamics. PMID:25204419

  20. A hyperparasite affects the population dynamics of a wild plant pathogen.

    PubMed

    Tollenaere, C; Pernechele, B; Mäkinen, H S; Parratt, S R; Németh, M Z; Kovács, G M; Kiss, L; Tack, A J M; Laine, A-L

    2014-12-01

    Assessing the impact of natural enemies of plant and animal pathogens on their host's population dynamics is needed to determine the role of hyperparasites in affecting disease dynamics, and their potential for use in efficient control strategies of pathogens. Here, we focus on the long-term study describing metapopulation dynamics of an obligate pathogen, the powdery mildew (Podosphaera plantaginis) naturally infecting its wild host plant (Plantago lanceolata) in the fragmented landscape of the Åland archipelago (southwest Finland). Regionally, the pathogen persists through a balance of extinctions and colonizations, yet factors affecting extinction rates remain poorly understood. Mycoparasites of the genus Ampelomyces appear as good candidates for testing the role of a hyperparasite, i.e. a parasite of other parasites, in the regulation of their fungal hosts' population dynamics. For this purpose, we first designed a quantitative PCR assay for detection of Ampelomyces spp. in field-collected samples. This newly developed molecular test was then applied to a large-scale sampling within the Åland archipelago, revealing that Ampelomyces is a widespread hyperparasite in this system, with high variability in prevalence among populations. We found that the hyperparasite was more common on leaves where multiple powdery mildew strains coexist, a pattern that may be attributed to differential exposure. Moreover, the prevalence of Ampelomyces at the plant level negatively affected the overwinter survival of its fungal host. We conclude that this hyperparasite may likely impact on its host population dynamics and argue for increased focus on the role of hyperparasites in disease dynamics. PMID:25204419

  1. Spectral quality affects disease development of three pathogens on hydroponically grown plants

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schuerger, A. C.; Brown, C. S.; Sager, J. C. (Principal Investigator)

    1997-01-01

    Plants were grown under light-emitting diode (LED) arrays with various spectra to determine the effects of light quality on the development of diseases caused by tomato mosaic virus (ToMV) on pepper (Capsicum annuum L.), powdery mildew [Sphaerotheca fuliginea (Schlectend:Fr.) Pollaci] on cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.), and bacterial wilt (Pseudomonas solanacearum Smith) on tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill.). One LED (660) array supplied 99% red light at 660 nm (25 nm bandwidth at half-peak height) and 1% far-red light between 700 to 800 nm. A second LED (660/735) array supplied 83% red light at 660 nm and 17% far-red light at 735 nm (25 nm bandwidth at half-peak height). A third LED (660/BF) array supplied 98% red light at 660 nm, 1% blue light (BF) between 350 to 550 nm, and 1% far-red light between 700 to 800 nm. Control plants were grown under broad-spectrum metal halide (MH) lamps. Plants were grown at a mean photon flux (300 to 800 nm) of 330 micromoles m-2 s-1 under a 12-h day/night photoperiod. Spectral quality affected each pathosystem differently. In the ToMV/pepper pathosystem, disease symptoms developed slower and were less severe in plants grown under light sources that contained blue and UV-A wavelengths (MH and 660/BF treatments) compared to plants grown under light sources that lacked blue and UV-A wavelengths (660 and 660/735 LED arrays). In contrast, the number of colonies per leaf was highest and the mean colony diameters of S. fuliginea on cucumber plants were largest on leaves grown under the MH lamp (highest amount of blue and UV-A light) and least on leaves grown under the 660 LED array (no blue or UV-A light). The addition of far-red irradiation to the primary light source in the 660/735 LED array increased the colony counts per leaf in the S. fuliginea/cucumber pathosystem compared to the red-only (660) LED array. In the P. solanacearum/tomato pathosystem, disease symptoms were less severe in plants grown under the 660 LED array, but the

  2. Soil biota can change after exotic plant invasion: Does this affect ecosystem processes?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Belnap, J.; Phillips, S.L.; Sherrod, S.K.; Moldenke, A.

    2005-01-01

    Invasion of the exotic annual grass Bromus tectorum into stands of the native perennial grass Hilaria jamesii significantly reduced the abundance of soil biota, especially microarthropods and nematodes. Effects of invasion on active and total bacterial and fungal biomass were variable, although populations generally increased after 50+ years of invasion. The invasion of Bromus also resulted in a decrease in richness and a species shift in plants, microarthropods, fungi, and nematodes. However, despite the depauperate soil fauna at the invaded sites, no effects were seen on cellulose decomposition rates, nitrogen mineralization rates, or vascular plant growth. When Hilaria was planted into soils from not-invaded, recently invaded, and historically invaded sites (all currently or once dominated by Hilaria), germination and survivorship were not affected. In contrast, aboveground Hilaria biomass was significantly greater in recently invaded soils than in the other two soils. We attributed the Hilaria response to differences in soil nutrients present before the invasion, especially soil nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium, as these nutrients were elevated in the soils that produced the greatest Hilaria biomass. Our data suggest that it is not soil biotic richness per se that determines soil process rates or plant productivity, but instead that either (1) the presence of a few critical soil food web taxa can keep ecosystem function high, (2) nutrient loss is very slow in this ecosystem, and/or (3) these processes are microbially driven. However, the presence of Bromus may reduce key soil nutrients over time and thus may eventually suppress native plant success. ?? 2005 by the Ecological Society of America.

  3. Bioaerosols from a Food Waste Composting Plant Affect Human Airway Epithelial Cell Remodeling Genes

    PubMed Central

    Chang, Ming-Wei; Lee, Chung-Ru; Hung, Hsueh-Fen; Teng, Kuo-Sheng; Huang, Hsin; Chuang, Chun-Yu

    2013-01-01

    The composting procedure in food waste plants generates airborne bioaerosols that have the potential to damage human airway epithelial cells. Persistent inflammation and repair responses induce airway remodeling and damage to the respiratory system. This study elucidated the expression changes of airway remodeling genes in human lung mucoepidermoid NCI-H292 cells exposed to bioaerosols from a composting plant. Different types of microorganisms were detectable in the composting plant, using the agar culture method. Real-time polymerase chain reaction was used to quantify the level of Aspergillus fumigatus and the profile of remodeling genes. The real-time PCR results indicated that the amount of A. fumigatus in the composting hall was less than 102 conidia. The endotoxins in the field bioaerosols were determined using a limulus amebocyte lysate test. The endotoxin levels depended on the type of particulate matter (PM), with coarse particles (2.5–10 μm) having higher endotoxin levels than did fine particles (0.5–2.5 μm). After exposure to the conditioned medium of field bioaerosol samples, NCI-H292 cells showed increased pro-inflammatory interleukin (IL)-6 release and activated epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR), transforming growth factor (TGF)-β1 and cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor 1 (p21WAF1/CIP1) gene expression, but not of matrix metallopeptidase (MMP)-9. Airborne endotoxin levels were higher inside the composting hall than they were in other areas, and they were associated with PM. This suggested that airborne bioaerosols in the composting plant contained endotoxins and microorganisms besides A. fumigatus that cause the inflammatory cytokine secretion and augment the expression of remodeling genes in NCI-H292 cells. It is thus necessary to monitor potentially hazardous materials from bioaerosols in food composting plants, which could affect the health of workers. PMID:24368426

  4. Dynamic Response of Large Wind Power Plant Affected by Diverse Conditions at Individual Turbines

    SciTech Connect

    Elizondo, Marcelo A.; Lu, Shuai; Lin, Guang; Wang, Shaobu

    2014-07-31

    Diverse operating conditions at individual wind turbine generators (WTG) within wind power plants (WPPs) can affect the WPP dynamic response to system faults. For example, individual WTGs can experience diverse terminal voltage and power output caused by different wind direction and speed, affecting the response of protection and control limiters. In this paper, we present a study to investigate the dynamic response of a detailed WPP model under diverse power outputs of its individual WTGs. Wake effect is considered as the reason for diverse power outputs. The diverse WTG power output is evaluated in a test system where a large 168-machine test WPP is connected to the IEEE-39-bus system. The power output from each WTG is derived from a wake effect model that uses realistic statistical data for incoming wind speed and direction. The results show that diverse WTG output due to wake effect can affect the WPP dynamic response activating specialized control in some turbines. In addition, transient stability is affected by exhibiting uncertainty in critical clearing time calculation.

  5. The odor of a plant metabolite affects life history traits in dietary restricted adult olive flies

    PubMed Central

    Gerofotis, Christos D.; Ioannou, Charalampos S.; Nakas, Christos T.; Papadopoulos, Nikos T.

    2016-01-01

    Food quality shapes life history traits either directly or through response of individuals to additional environmental factors, such as chemical cues. Plant extracts used as food additives modulate key life history traits; however little is known regarding such effects for olfactory chemical cues. Exploiting an interesting experimental system that involves the olive fly (Bactrocera oleae) and the plant metabolite α-pinene we asked whether exposure of adults to this compound modulates adult longevity and female reproduction in similar manner in a stressful – dietary (protein) restricted (DR) and in a relaxed- full diet (FD) feeding environment. Accordingly, we exposed males and females to the aroma of α-pinene and measured lifespan and age-specific fecundity in the above two dietary contexts. Our results demonstrate that exposure to α-pinene increased longevity in males and fecundity in females only under dietary restricted conditions. In relaxed food conditions, females exposed to α-pinene shifted high egg-laying towards younger ages compared to non-exposed ones. This is the first report demonstrating that a plant compound affects key life history traits of adult olive flies through olfaction. These effects are sex-specific and more pronounced in dietary restricted adults. Possible underlying mechanisms and the ecological significance are discussed. PMID:27339862

  6. Burkholderia cenocepacia Lipopolysaccharide Modification and Flagellin Glycosylation Affect Virulence but Not Innate Immune Recognition in Plants

    PubMed Central

    Khodai-Kalaki, Maryam; Andrade, Angel; Fathy Mohamed, Yasmine

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Burkholderia cenocepacia causes opportunistic infections in plants, insects, animals, and humans, suggesting that “virulence” depends on the host and its innate susceptibility to infection. We hypothesized that modifications in key bacterial molecules recognized by the innate immune system modulate host responses to B. cenocepacia. Indeed, modification of lipopolysaccharide (LPS) with 4-amino-4-deoxy-l-arabinose and flagellin glycosylation attenuates B. cenocepacia infection in Arabidopsis thaliana and Galleria mellonella insect larvae. However, B. cenocepacia LPS and flagellin triggered rapid bursts of nitric oxide and reactive oxygen species in A. thaliana leading to activation of the PR-1 defense gene. These responses were drastically reduced in plants with fls2 (flagellin FLS2 host receptor kinase), Atnoa1 (nitric oxide-associated protein 1), and dnd1-1 (reduced production of nitric oxide) null mutations. Together, our results indicate that LPS modification and flagellin glycosylation do not affect recognition by plant receptors but are required for bacteria to establish overt infection. PMID:26045541

  7. The odor of a plant metabolite affects life history traits in dietary restricted adult olive flies.

    PubMed

    Gerofotis, Christos D; Ioannou, Charalampos S; Nakas, Christos T; Papadopoulos, Nikos T

    2016-01-01

    Food quality shapes life history traits either directly or through response of individuals to additional environmental factors, such as chemical cues. Plant extracts used as food additives modulate key life history traits; however little is known regarding such effects for olfactory chemical cues. Exploiting an interesting experimental system that involves the olive fly (Bactrocera oleae) and the plant metabolite α-pinene we asked whether exposure of adults to this compound modulates adult longevity and female reproduction in similar manner in a stressful - dietary (protein) restricted (DR) and in a relaxed- full diet (FD) feeding environment. Accordingly, we exposed males and females to the aroma of α-pinene and measured lifespan and age-specific fecundity in the above two dietary contexts. Our results demonstrate that exposure to α-pinene increased longevity in males and fecundity in females only under dietary restricted conditions. In relaxed food conditions, females exposed to α-pinene shifted high egg-laying towards younger ages compared to non-exposed ones. This is the first report demonstrating that a plant compound affects key life history traits of adult olive flies through olfaction. These effects are sex-specific and more pronounced in dietary restricted adults. Possible underlying mechanisms and the ecological significance are discussed. PMID:27339862

  8. Host plant affects the sexual attractiveness of the female white-spotted longicorn beetle, Anoplophora malasiaca.

    PubMed

    Yasui, Hiroe; Fujiwara-Tsujii, Nao

    2016-01-01

    Anoplophora malasiaca (Coleoptera: Cerambycidae) is a serious pest that destroys various landscape and crop trees in Japan. We evaluated the precopulatory responses of three different A. malasiaca populations collected from mandarin orange, willow and blueberry trees. Most of the males accepted mates from within the same host plant population as well as females from the willow and blueberry populations. However, significant number of males from the blueberry and willow populations rejected females from the mandarin orange population immediately after touching them with their antennae. Because all three of the female populations produced contact sex pheromones on their elytra, the females of the mandarin orange population were predicted to possess extra chemicals that repelled the males of the other two populations. β-Elemene was identified as a key component that was only found in mandarin orange-fed females and induced a rejection response in willow-fed males. Our results represent the first example of a female-acquired repellent against conspecific males of different host plant populations, indicating that the host plant greatly affects the female's sexual attractiveness. PMID:27412452

  9. Host plant affects the sexual attractiveness of the female white-spotted longicorn beetle, Anoplophora malasiaca

    PubMed Central

    Yasui, Hiroe; Fujiwara-Tsujii, Nao

    2016-01-01

    Anoplophora malasiaca (Coleoptera: Cerambycidae) is a serious pest that destroys various landscape and crop trees in Japan. We evaluated the precopulatory responses of three different A. malasiaca populations collected from mandarin orange, willow and blueberry trees. Most of the males accepted mates from within the same host plant population as well as females from the willow and blueberry populations. However, significant number of males from the blueberry and willow populations rejected females from the mandarin orange population immediately after touching them with their antennae. Because all three of the female populations produced contact sex pheromones on their elytra, the females of the mandarin orange population were predicted to possess extra chemicals that repelled the males of the other two populations. β-Elemene was identified as a key component that was only found in mandarin orange-fed females and induced a rejection response in willow-fed males. Our results represent the first example of a female-acquired repellent against conspecific males of different host plant populations, indicating that the host plant greatly affects the female’s sexual attractiveness. PMID:27412452

  10. Does Plant Biomass Manipulation in Static Chambers Affect Nitrous Oxide Emissions from Soils?

    PubMed

    Collier, Sarah M; Dean, Andrew P; Oates, Lawrence G; Ruark, Matthew D; Jackson, Randall D

    2016-03-01

    One of the most widespread approaches for measurement of greenhouse gas emissions from soils involves the use of static chambers. This method is relatively inexpensive, is easily replicated, and is ideally suited to plot-based experimental systems. Among its limitations is the loss of detection sensitivity with increasing chamber height, which creates challenges for deployment in systems including tall vegetation. It is not always possible to avoid inclusion of plants within chambers or to extend chamber height to fully accommodate plant growth. Thus, in many systems, such as perennial forages and biomass crops, plants growing within static chambers must either be trimmed or folded during lid closure. Currently, data on how different types of biomass manipulation affect measured results is limited. Here, we compare the effects of cutting vs. folding of biomass on nitrous oxide measurements in switchgrass ( L.) and alfalfa ( L.) systems. We report only limited evidence of treatment effects during discrete sampling events and little basis for concern that effects may intensify over time as biomass manipulation is repeatedly imposed. However, nonsignificant treatment effects that were consistently present amounted to significant overall trends in three out of the four systems studied. Such minor disparities in flux could amount to considerable quantities over time, suggesting that caution should be exercised when comparing cumulative emission values from studies using different biomass manipulation strategies. PMID:27065424

  11. Characterization of 10 microsatellite markers for the understorey Amazonian herb Heliconia acuminata.

    PubMed

    Côrtes, M C; Gowda, V; Kress, W J; Bruna, E M; Uriarte, M

    2009-07-01

    We characterized 10 microsatellite loci for the plant Heliconia acuminata from the Biological Dynamics of Forest Fragments Project (Manaus, Brazil). Markers were screened in 61 individuals from one population and were found to be polymorphic with an average of eight alleles per locus. We found moderate to high levels of polymorphic information content, and observed and expected heterozygosities. All 10 markers are suitable for spatial genetic structure and parentage analyses and will be used for understanding H. acuminata dynamics across a fragmented landscape. PMID:21564896

  12. Exogenous abscisic acid significantly affects proteome in tea plant (Camellia sinensis) exposed to drought stress

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Lin; Xu, Hui; Mischke, Sue; Meinhardt, Lyndel W; Zhang, Dapeng; Zhu, Xujun; Li, Xinghui; Fang, Wanping

    2014-01-01

    Tea [Camellia sinensis (L.) O. Kuntze] is an important economic crop, and drought is the most important abiotic stress affecting yield and quality. Abscisic acid (ABA) is an important phytohormone responsible for activating drought resistance. Increased understanding of ABA effects on tea plant under drought stress is essential to develop drought-tolerant tea genotypes, along with crop management practices that can mitigate drought stress. The objective of the present investigation is evaluation of effects of exogenous ABA on the leaf proteome in tea plant exposed to drought stress. Leaf protein patterns of tea plants under simulated drought stress [(polyethylene glycol (PEG)-treated] and exogenous ABA treatment were analyzed in a time-course experiment using two-dimensional electrophoresis (2-DE), followed by matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight (MALDI-TOF) mass spectrometry (MS). Among the 72 protein spots identified by MALDI-TOF MS, 16 proteins were downregulated and two were upregulated by exogenous ABA. The upregulated proteins have roles in glycolysis and photosystem II stabilization. Twenty-one protein spots were responsive to drought stress and most participate in carbohydrate and nitrogen metabolism, control of reactive oxygen species (ROS), defense, signaling or nucleic acid metabolism. The combined treatments of exogenous ABA and drought showed upregulation of 10 protein spots at 12 h and upregulation of 11 proteins at 72 h after initiation of drought stress. The results support the importance of the role that ABA plays in the tea plant during drought stress, by improving protein transport, carbon metabolism and expression of resistance proteins. PMID:27076915

  13. Plant material as bioaccumulator of arsenic in soils affected by mining activities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martínez-López, Salvadora; Martínez-Sánchez, Maria Jose; García-Lorenzo, Maria Luz; Pérez-Sirvent, Carmen

    2010-05-01

    fraction (oxidaizable medium extraction procedure). Arsenic concentration in leaves was positively correlated with the arsenic extracted by HCl, with the oxidizable-organic matter and sulfides fraction and with the arsenic extracted by Mehra-Jackson extraction. According to our results, As is accumulated in the leaves of the plants and is linked with iron oxides of these soils affected by mining activities.

  14. Host Plants Affect the Foraging Success of Two Parasitoids that Attack Light Brown Apple Moth Epiphyas postvittana (Walker) (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae).

    PubMed

    Feng, Yi; Wratten, Steve; Sandhu, Harpinder; Keller, Michael

    2015-01-01

    The light brown apple moth, Epiphyas postvittana is a key pest of wine grapes in Australia. Two parasitoids, Dolichogenidea tasmanica and Therophilus unimaculatus, attack the larval stage of this pest. D. tasmanica is dominant in vineyards, whereas T. unimaculatus is mainly active in native vegetation. We sought to understand why they differ in their use of habitats. Plants are a major component of habitats of parasitoids, and herbivore-infested plants influence parasitoid foraging efficiency by their architecture and emission of volatile chemicals. We investigated how different plant species infested by E. postvittana could affect the foraging success of the two parasitoid species in both laboratory and field experiments. Four common host-plant species were selected for this study. In paired-choice experiments to determine the innate foraging preferences for plants, both parasitoid species showed differences in innate search preferences among plant species. The plant preference of D. tasmanica was altered by oviposition experience with hosts that were feeding on other plant species. In a behavioral assay, the two parasitoid species allocated their times engaged in various types of behavior differently when foraging on different plant species. For both parasitoids, parasitism on Hardenbergia violacea was the highest of the four plant species. Significantly more larvae dropped from Myoporum insulare when attacked than from the other three host-plant species, which indicates that parasitism is also affected by interactions between plants and host insects. In vineyards, parasitism by D. tasmanica was significantly lower on M. insulare than on the other three host-plant species, but the parasitism rates were similar among the other three plant species. Our results indicate that plants play a role in the habitat preferences of these two parasitoid species by influencing their foraging behavior, and are likely to contribute to their distributions among habitats. PMID

  15. Host Plants Affect the Foraging Success of Two Parasitoids that Attack Light Brown Apple Moth Epiphyas postvittana (Walker) (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae)

    PubMed Central

    Feng, Yi; Wratten, Steve; Sandhu, Harpinder; Keller, Michael

    2015-01-01

    The light brown apple moth, Epiphyas postvittana is a key pest of wine grapes in Australia. Two parasitoids, Dolichogenidea tasmanica and Therophilus unimaculatus, attack the larval stage of this pest. D. tasmanica is dominant in vineyards, whereas T. unimaculatus is mainly active in native vegetation. We sought to understand why they differ in their use of habitats. Plants are a major component of habitats of parasitoids, and herbivore-infested plants influence parasitoid foraging efficiency by their architecture and emission of volatile chemicals. We investigated how different plant species infested by E. postvittana could affect the foraging success of the two parasitoid species in both laboratory and field experiments. Four common host-plant species were selected for this study. In paired-choice experiments to determine the innate foraging preferences for plants, both parasitoid species showed differences in innate search preferences among plant species. The plant preference of D. tasmanica was altered by oviposition experience with hosts that were feeding on other plant species. In a behavioral assay, the two parasitoid species allocated their times engaged in various types of behavior differently when foraging on different plant species. For both parasitoids, parasitism on Hardenbergia violacea was the highest of the four plant species. Significantly more larvae dropped from Myoporum insulare when attacked than from the other three host-plant species, which indicates that parasitism is also affected by interactions between plants and host insects. In vineyards, parasitism by D. tasmanica was significantly lower on M. insulare than on the other three host-plant species, but the parasitism rates were similar among the other three plant species. Our results indicate that plants play a role in the habitat preferences of these two parasitoid species by influencing their foraging behavior, and are likely to contribute to their distributions among habitats. PMID

  16. Does vegetation complexity affect host plant chemistry, and thus multitrophic interactions, in a human-altered landscape?

    PubMed

    Wäschke, Nicole; Hancock, Christine; Hilker, Monika; Obermaier, Elisabeth; Meiners, Torsten

    2015-09-01

    Anthropogenic land use may shape vegetation composition and affect trophic interactions by altering concentrations of host plant metabolites. Here, we investigated the hypotheses that: (1) plant N and defensive secondary metabolite contents of the herb Plantago lanceolata are affected by land use intensity (LUI) and the surrounding vegetation composition (=plant species richness and P. lanceolata density), and that (2) changes in plant chemistry affect abundances of the herbivorous weevils Mecinus pascuorum and Mecinus labilis, as well as their larval parasitoid Mesopolobus incultus, in the field. We determined plant species richness, P. lanceolata density, and abundances of the herbivores and the parasitoid in 77 grassland plots differing in LUI index in three regions across Germany. We also measured the N and secondary metabolite [the iridoid glycosides (IGs) aucubin and catalpol] contents of P. lanceolata leaves. Mixed-model analysis revealed that: (1) concentrations of leaf IGs were positively correlated with plant species richness; leaf N content was positively correlated with the LUI index. Furthermore: (2) herbivore abundance was not related to IG concentrations, but correlated negatively with leaf N content. Parasitoid abundance correlated positively only with host abundance over the three regions. Structural equation models revealed a positive impact of IG concentrations on parasitoid abundance in one region. We conclude that changes in plant chemistry due to land use and/or vegetation composition may affect higher trophic levels and that the manifestation of these effects may depend on local biotic or abiotic features of the landscape. PMID:25986560

  17. Unpreferred plants affect patch choice and spatial distribution of European brown hares

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuijper, D. P. J.; Bakker, J. P.

    2008-11-01

    Many herbivore species prefer to forage on patches of intermediate biomass. Plant quality and forage efficiency are predicted to decrease with increasing plant standing crop which explains the lower preference of the herbivore. However, often is ignored that on the long-term, plant species composition is predicted to change with increasing plant standing crop. The amount of low-quality, unpreferred food plants increases with increasing plant standing crop. In the present study the effects of unpreferred plants on patch choice and distribution of European brown hare in a salt-marsh system were studied. In one experiment, unpreferred plants were removed from plots. In the second experiment, plots were planted with different densities of an unpreferred artificial plant. Removal of unpreferred plants increased hare-grazing pressure more than fivefold compared to unmanipulated plots. Planting of unpreferred plants reduced hare-grazing pressure, with a significant reduction of grazing already occurring at low unpreferred plant density. Spatial distribution of hares within this salt-marsh system was related to spatial arrangement of unpreferred plants. Hare-grazing intensity decreased strongly with increasing abundance of unpreferred plants despite a high abundance of principal food plants. The results of this study indicate that plant species replacement is an important factor determining patch choice and spatial distribution of hares next to changing plant quality. Increasing abundance of unpreferred plant species can strengthen the decreasing patch quality with increasing standing crop and can decrease grazing intensity when preferred food plants are still abundantly present.

  18. Decreased summer drought affects plant productivity and soil carbon dynamics in Mediterranean woodland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cotrufo, M. F.; Alberti, G.; Inglima, I.; Marjanović, H.; Lecain, D.; Zaldei, A.; Peressotti, A.; Miglietta, F.

    2011-06-01

    Precipitation patterns are expected to change in the Mediterranean region within the next decades, with projected decreases in total rainfall and increases in extreme events. We manipulated precipitation patterns in a Mediterranean woodland, dominated by Arbutus unedo L., to study the effects of changing precipitation regimes on above-ground net primary production (ANPP) and soil C dynamics, specifically plant-derived C input to soil and soil respiration (SR). Experimental plots were exposed to either a 20 % reduction of throughfall or to water addition targeted at maintaining soil water content above a minimum of 10 % v/v. Treatments were compared to control plots which received ambient precipitation. The throughfall manipulation experiment started in 2004 and we report data up to the 2009 growing season. Enhanced soil moisture during summer months highly stimulated annual stem primary production, litter fall, SR and net annual plant-derived C input to soil which on average increased by 130 %, 26 %, 50 % and 220 %, respectively, as compared to control. In contrast, the 20 % reduction in throughfall (equivalent to 10 % reduction of precipitation) did not significantly change soil moisture at the site, and therefore did not significantly affect ANPP or SR. We conclude that minor changes (around 10 % reduction) in precipitation amount are not likely to significantly affect ANPP or soil C dynamics in Mediterranean woodland. However, if summer rain increases, C cycling will significantly accelerate but soil C stocks are not likely to be changed in the short-term. More studies involving modelling of long term C dynamics are needed to predict if the estimated increases in soil C input under wet conditions is going to be sustained and if labile C is being substituted to stable C, with a negative effect on long term soil C stocks.

  19. Decreased summer drought affects plant productivity and soil carbon dynamics in a Mediterranean woodland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cotrufo, M. F.; Alberti, G.; Inglima, I.; Marjanović, H.; Lecain, D.; Zaldei, A.; Peressotti, A.; Miglietta, F.

    2011-09-01

    Precipitation patterns are expected to change in the Mediterranean region within the next decades, with projected decreases in total rainfall and increases in extreme events. We manipulated precipitation patterns in a Mediterranean woodland, dominated by Arbutus unedo L., to study the effects of changing precipitation regimes on above-ground net primary production (ANPP) and soil C dynamics, specifically plant-derived C input to soil and soil respiration (SR). Experimental plots were exposed to either a 20 % reduction of throughfall or to water addition targeted at maintaining soil water content above a minimum of 10 % v/v. Treatments were compared to control plots which received ambient precipitation. Enhanced soil moisture during summer months highly stimulated annual stem primary production, litter fall, SR and net annual plant-derived C input to soil which on average increased by 130 %, 26 %, 58 % and 220 %, respectively, as compared to the control. In contrast, the 20 % reduction in throughfall (equivalent to 10 % reduction in precipitation) did not significantly change soil moisture at the site, and therefore did not significantly affect ANPP or SR. We conclude that minor changes (around 10 % reduction) in precipitation amount are not likely to significantly affect ANPP or soil C dynamics in Mediterranean woodlands. However, if summer rain increases, C cycling will significantly accelerate but soil C stocks are not likely to be changed in the short-term. More studies involving modelling of long-term C dynamics are needed to predict if the estimated increases in soil C input under wet conditions is going to be sustained and if labile C is being substituted to stable C, with a negative effect on long-term soil C stocks.

  20. Ozone Differentially Affects Perception of Plant Volatiles in Western Honey Bees.

    PubMed

    Dötterl, Stefan; Vater, Marina; Rupp, Thomas; Held, Andreas

    2016-06-01

    Floral scents play a key role in mediating plant-pollinator interactions. Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) emitted by flowers are used by flower visitors as olfactory cues to locate flowers, both from a distance and at close range. More recently it has been demonstrated that reactive molecules such as ozone can modify or degrade VOCs, and this may impair the communication between plants and their pollinators. However, it is not known whether such reactive molecules also may affect the olfactory system of pollinators, and thus not only influence signal transmission but perception of the signal. In this study, we used electroantennographic measurements to determine the effect of increased levels of ozone on antennal responses in western honey bees (Apis mellifera L.). Linalool and 2-phenylethanol, both known to be involved in location of flowers by the bees, and (Z)-3-hexenyl acetate, a widespread green leaf volatile also detected by bees, were used. The results showed that ozone affected antennal responses to the different substances differently. Ozone decreased antennal responses to (Z)-3-hexenyl acetate, whereas responses to linalool and 2-phenylethanol were not influenced by ozone. Overall, the study does not provide evidence that pollination by honey bees is impaired by damage in the olfactory system of the bees caused by increased levels of ozone, at least when linalool and 2-phenylethanol are the attractive signals. However, the results also suggest that ozone can change the overall perception of an odor blend. This might have negative effects in pollination systems and other organismic interactions mediated by specific ratios of compounds. PMID:27344162

  1. Spatial environmental heterogeneity affects plant growth and thermal performance on a green roof.

    PubMed

    Buckland-Nicks, Michael; Heim, Amy; Lundholm, Jeremy

    2016-05-15

    Green roofs provide ecosystem services, including stormwater retention and reductions in heat transfer through the roof. Microclimates, as well as designed features of green roofs, such as substrate and vegetation, affect the magnitude of these services. Many green roofs are partially shaded by surrounding buildings, but the effects of this within-roof spatial environmental heterogeneity on thermal performance and other ecosystem services have not been examined. We quantified the effects of spatial heterogeneity in solar radiation, substrate depth and other variables affected by these drivers on vegetation and ecosystem services in an extensive green roof. Spatial heterogeneity in substrate depth and insolation were correlated with differential growth, survival and flowering in two focal plant species. These effects were likely driven by the resulting spatial heterogeneity in substrate temperature and moisture content. Thermal performance (indicated by heat flux and substrate temperature) was influenced by spatial heterogeneity in vegetation cover and substrate depth. Areas with less insolation were cooler in summer and had greater substrate moisture, leading to more favorable conditions for plant growth and survival. Spatial variation in substrate moisture (7%-26% volumetric moisture content) and temperature (21°C-36°C) during hot sunny conditions in summer could cause large differences in stormwater retention and heat flux within a single green roof. Shaded areas promote smaller heat fluxes through the roof, leading to energy savings, but lower evapotranspiration in these areas should reduce stormwater retention capacity. Spatial heterogeneity can thus result in trade-offs between different ecosystem services. The effects of these spatial heterogeneities are likely widespread in green roofs. Structures that provide shelter from sun and wind may be productively utilized to design higher functioning green roofs and increase biodiversity by providing habitat

  2. Does nitrate co-pollution affect biological responses of an aquatic plant to two common herbicides?

    PubMed

    Nuttens, A; Chatellier, S; Devin, S; Guignard, C; Lenouvel, A; Gross, E M

    2016-08-01

    Aquatic systems in agricultural landscapes are subjected to multiple stressors, among them pesticide and nitrate run-off, but effects of both together have rarely been studied. We investigated possible stress-specific and interaction effects using the new OECD test organism, Myriophyllum spicatum, a widespread aquatic plant. In a fully factorial design, we used two widely applied herbicides, isoproturon and mesosulfuron-methyl, in concentration-response curves at two nitrate levels (219.63 and 878.52mg N-NO3). We applied different endpoints reflecting plant performance such as growth, pigment content, content in phenolic compounds, and plant stoichiometry. Relative growth rates based on length (RGR-L) were affected strongly by both herbicides, while effects on relative growth rate based on dry weight (RGR-DW) were apparent for isoproturon but hardly visible for mesosulfuron-methyl due to an increase in dry matter content. The higher nitrate level further reduced growth rates, specifically with mesosulfuron-methyl. Effects were visible between 50 and 500μgL(-1) for isoproturon and 0.5-5μgL(-1) for mesosulfuron-methyl, with some differences between endpoints. The two herbicides had opposite effects on chlorophyll, carotenoid and nitrogen contents in plants, with values increasing with increasing concentrations of isoproturon and decreasing for mesosulfuron-methyl. Herbicides and nitrate level exhibited distinct effects on the content in phenolic compounds, with higher nitrate levels reducing total phenolic compounds in controls and with isoproturon, but not with mesosulfuron-methyl. Increasing concentrations of mesosulfuron-methyl lead to a decline of total phenolic compounds, while isoproturon had little effect. Contents of carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus changed depending on the stressor combination. We observed higher phosphorus levels in plants exposed to certain concentrations of herbicides, potentially indicating a metabolic response. The C:N molar ratio

  3. Ecological context and metapopulation dynamics affect sex-ratio variation among dioecious plant populations

    PubMed Central

    Field, David L.; Pickup, Melinda; Barrett, Spencer C. H.

    2013-01-01

    Background and Aims Populations of dioecious flowering plants commonly exhibit heterogeneity in sex ratios and deviations from the equilibrium expectation of equal numbers of females and males. Yet the role of ecological and demographic factors in contributing towards biased sex ratios is currently not well understood. Methods Species-level studies from the literature were analysed to investigate ecological correlates of among-population sex-ratio variation and metapopulation models and empirical data were used to explore the influence of demography and non-equilibrium conditions on flowering sex ratios. Key Results The survey revealed significant among-population heterogeneity in sex ratios and this was related to the degree of sampling effort. For some species, sex-ratio bias was associated with the proportion of non-reproductive individuals, with greater male bias in populations with a lower proportion of individuals that were flowering. Male-biased ratios were also found at higher altitudes and latitudes, and in more xeric sites. Simulations and empirical data indicated that clonal species exhibited greater heterogeneity in sex ratios than non-clonal species as a result of their slower approach to equilibrium. The simulations also indicated the importance of interactions between reproductive mode and founder effects, with greater departures from equilibrium in clonal populations with fewer founding individuals. Conclusions The results indicate that sex-based differences in costs of reproduction and non-equilibrium conditions can each play important roles in affecting flowering sex ratios in populations of dioecious plants. PMID:23444124

  4. Glycogen catabolism, but not its biosynthesis, affects virulence of Fusarium oxysporum on the plant host.

    PubMed

    Corral-Ramos, Cristina; Roncero, M Isabel G

    2015-04-01

    The role of glycogen metabolism was investigated in the fungal pathogen Fusarium oxysporum. Targeted inactivation was performed of genes responsible for glycogen biosynthesis: gnn1 encoding glycogenin, gls1 encoding glycogen synthase, and gbe1 encoding glycogen branching enzyme. Moreover genes involved in glycogen catabolism were deleted: gph1 encoding glycogen phosphorylase and gdb1 encoding glycogen de-branching enzyme. Glycogen reserves increased steadily during growth of the wild type strain in axenic cultures, to reach up to 1500μg glucose equivalents mg(-1) protein after 14 days. Glycogen accumulation was abolished in mutants lacking biosynthesis genes, whereas it increased by 20-40% or 80%, respectively, in the single and double mutants affected in catabolic genes. Transcript levels of glycogen metabolism genes during tomato plant infection peaked at four days post inoculation, similar to the results observed during axenic culture. Significant differences were observed between gdb mutants and the wild type strain for vegetative hyphal fusion ability. The single mutants defective in glycogen metabolism showed similar levels of virulence in the invertebrate animal model Galleria mellonella. Interestingly, the deletion of gdb1 reduced virulence on the plant host up to 40% compared to the wild type in single and in double mutant backgrounds, whereas the other mutants showed the virulence at the wild-type level. PMID:25865793

  5. Light Influences How the Fungal Toxin Deoxynivalenol Affects Plant Cell Death and Defense Responses

    PubMed Central

    Ansari, Khairul I.; Doyle, Siamsa M.; Kacprzyk, Joanna; Khan, Mojibur R.; Walter, Stephanie; Brennan, Josephine M.; Arunachalam, Chanemouga Soundharam; McCabe, Paul F.; Doohan, Fiona M.

    2014-01-01

    The Fusarium mycotoxin deoxynivalenol (DON) can cause cell death in wheat (Triticum aestivum), but can also reduce the level of cell death caused by heat shock in Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) cell cultures. We show that 10 μg mL−1 DON does not cause cell death in Arabidopsis cell cultures, and its ability to retard heat-induced cell death is light dependent. Under dark conditions, it actually promoted heat-induced cell death. Wheat cultivars differ in their ability to resist this toxin, and we investigated if the ability of wheat to mount defense responses was light dependent. We found no evidence that light affected the transcription of defense genes in DON-treated roots of seedlings of two wheat cultivars, namely cultivar CM82036 that is resistant to DON-induced bleaching of spikelet tissue and cultivar Remus that is not. However, DON treatment of roots led to genotype-dependent and light-enhanced defense transcript accumulation in coleoptiles. Wheat transcripts encoding a phenylalanine ammonia lyase (PAL) gene (previously associated with Fusarium resistance), non-expressor of pathogenesis-related genes-1 (NPR1) and a class III plant peroxidase (POX) were DON-upregulated in coleoptiles of wheat cultivar CM82036 but not of cultivar Remus, and DON-upregulation of these transcripts in cultivar CM82036 was light enhanced. Light and genotype-dependent differences in the DON/DON derivative content of coleoptiles were also observed. These results, coupled with previous findings regarding the effect of DON on plants, show that light either directly or indirectly influences the plant defense responses to DON. PMID:24561479

  6. Light influences how the fungal toxin deoxynivalenol affects plant cell death and defense responses.

    PubMed

    Ansari, Khairul I; Doyle, Siamsa M; Kacprzyk, Joanna; Khan, Mojibur R; Walter, Stephanie; Brennan, Josephine M; Arunachalam, Chanemouga Soundharam; McCabe, Paul F; Doohan, Fiona M

    2014-02-01

    The Fusarium mycotoxin deoxynivalenol (DON) can cause cell death in wheat (Triticum aestivum), but can also reduce the level of cell death caused by heat shock in Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) cell cultures. We show that 10 μg mL(-1) DON does not cause cell death in Arabidopsis cell cultures, and its ability to retard heat-induced cell death is light dependent. Under dark conditions, it actually promoted heat-induced cell death. Wheat cultivars differ in their ability to resist this toxin, and we investigated if the ability of wheat to mount defense responses was light dependent. We found no evidence that light affected the transcription of defense genes in DON-treated roots of seedlings of two wheat cultivars, namely cultivar CM82036 that is resistant to DON-induced bleaching of spikelet tissue and cultivar Remus that is not. However, DON treatment of roots led to genotype-dependent and light-enhanced defense transcript accumulation in coleoptiles. Wheat transcripts encoding a phenylalanine ammonia lyase (PAL) gene (previously associated with Fusarium resistance), non-expressor of pathogenesis-related genes-1 (NPR1) and a class III plant peroxidase (POX) were DON-upregulated in coleoptiles of wheat cultivar CM82036 but not of cultivar Remus, and DON-upregulation of these transcripts in cultivar CM82036 was light enhanced. Light and genotype-dependent differences in the DON/DON derivative content of coleoptiles were also observed. These results, coupled with previous findings regarding the effect of DON on plants, show that light either directly or indirectly influences the plant defense responses to DON. PMID:24561479

  7. Parental age affects somatic mutation rates in the progeny of flowering plants.

    PubMed

    Singh, Amit Kumar; Bashir, Tufail; Sailer, Christian; Gurumoorthy, Viswanathan; Ramakrishnan, Anantha Maharasi; Dhanapal, Shanmuhapreya; Grossniklaus, Ueli; Baskar, Ramamurthy

    2015-05-01

    In humans, it is well known that the parental reproductive age has a strong influence on mutations transmitted to their progeny. Meiotic nondisjunction is known to increase in older mothers, and base substitutions tend to go up with paternal reproductive age. Hence, it is clear that the germinal mutation rates are a function of both maternal and paternal ages in humans. In contrast, it is unknown whether the parental reproductive age has an effect on somatic mutation rates in the progeny, because these are rare and difficult to detect. To address this question, we took advantage of the plant model system Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana), where mutation detector lines allow for an easy quantitation of somatic mutations, to test the effect of parental age on somatic mutation rates in the progeny. Although we found no significant effect of parental age on base substitutions, we found that frameshift mutations and transposition events increased in the progeny of older parents, an effect that is stronger through the maternal line. In contrast, intrachromosomal recombination events in the progeny decrease with the age of the parents in a parent-of-origin-dependent manner. Our results clearly show that parental reproductive age affects somatic mutation rates in the progeny and, thus, that some form of age-dependent information, which affects the frequency of double-strand breaks and possibly other processes involved in maintaining genome integrity, is transmitted through the gametes. PMID:25810093

  8. Plant-derived decapeptide OSIP108 interferes with Candida albicans biofilm formation without affecting cell viability.

    PubMed

    Delattin, Nicolas; De Brucker, Katrijn; Craik, David J; Cheneval, Olivier; Fröhlich, Mirjam; Veber, Matija; Girandon, Lenart; Davis, Talya R; Weeks, Anne E; Kumamoto, Carol A; Cos, Paul; Coenye, Tom; De Coninck, Barbara; Cammue, Bruno P A; Thevissen, Karin

    2014-05-01

    We previously identified a decapeptide from the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana, OSIP108, which is induced upon fungal pathogen infection. In this study, we demonstrated that OSIP108 interferes with biofilm formation of the fungal pathogen Candida albicans without affecting the viability or growth of C. albicans cells. OSIP108 displayed no cytotoxicity against various human cell lines. Furthermore, OSIP108 enhanced the activity of the antifungal agents amphotericin B and caspofungin in vitro and in vivo in a Caenorhabditis elegans-C. albicans biofilm infection model. These data point to the potential use of OSIP108 in combination therapy with conventional antifungal agents. In a first attempt to unravel its mode of action, we screened a library of 137 homozygous C. albicans mutants, affected in genes encoding cell wall proteins or transcription factors important for biofilm formation, for altered OSIP108 sensitivity. We identified 9 OSIP108-tolerant C. albicans mutants that were defective in either components important for cell wall integrity or the yeast-to-hypha transition. In line with these findings, we demonstrated that OSIP108 activates the C. albicans cell wall integrity pathway and that its antibiofilm activity can be blocked by compounds inhibiting the yeast-to-hypha transition. Furthermore, we found that OSIP108 is predominantly localized at the C. albicans cell surface. These data point to interference of OSIP108 with cell wall-related processes of C. albicans, resulting in impaired biofilm formation. PMID:24566179

  9. Parental Age Affects Somatic Mutation Rates in the Progeny of Flowering Plants1

    PubMed Central

    Singh, Amit Kumar; Bashir, Tufail; Sailer, Christian; Gurumoorthy, Viswanathan; Ramakrishnan, Anantha Maharasi; Dhanapal, Shanmuhapreya; Grossniklaus, Ueli; Baskar, Ramamurthy

    2015-01-01

    In humans, it is well known that the parental reproductive age has a strong influence on mutations transmitted to their progeny. Meiotic nondisjunction is known to increase in older mothers, and base substitutions tend to go up with paternal reproductive age. Hence, it is clear that the germinal mutation rates are a function of both maternal and paternal ages in humans. In contrast, it is unknown whether the parental reproductive age has an effect on somatic mutation rates in the progeny, because these are rare and difficult to detect. To address this question, we took advantage of the plant model system Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana), where mutation detector lines allow for an easy quantitation of somatic mutations, to test the effect of parental age on somatic mutation rates in the progeny. Although we found no significant effect of parental age on base substitutions, we found that frameshift mutations and transposition events increased in the progeny of older parents, an effect that is stronger through the maternal line. In contrast, intrachromosomal recombination events in the progeny decrease with the age of the parents in a parent-of-origin-dependent manner. Our results clearly show that parental reproductive age affects somatic mutation rates in the progeny and, thus, that some form of age-dependent information, which affects the frequency of double-strand breaks and possibly other processes involved in maintaining genome integrity, is transmitted through the gametes. PMID:25810093

  10. Seasonal variation in N uptake strategies in the understorey of a beech-dominated N-limited forest ecosystem depends on N source and species.

    PubMed

    Li, Xiuyuan; Rennenberg, Heinz; Simon, Judy

    2016-05-01

    In forest ecosystems, species use different strategies to increase their competitive ability for nitrogen (N) acquisition. The acquisition of N by trees is regulated by tree internal and environmental factors including mycorrhizae. In this study, we investigated the N uptake strategies of three co-occurring tree species [European beech (Fagus sylvatica L.), sycamore maple (Acer pseudoplatanus L.) and Norway maple (Acer platanoides L.)] in the understorey of a beech-dominated, N-limited forest on calcareous soil over two consecutive seasons. For this purpose, we studied (15)N uptake capacity as well as the allocation to N pools in the fine roots. Our results show that European beech had a higher capacity for both inorganic and organic N acquisition throughout the whole growing season compared with sycamore maple and Norway maple. The higher capacity of N acquisition in beech indicates a better adaption of beech to the understorey conditions of beech forests compared with the seedlings of other tree competitors under N-limited conditions. Despite these differences, all three species preferred organic over inorganic N sources throughout the growing season and showed similar seasonal patterns of N acquisition with an increased N uptake capacity in summer. However, this pattern varied with N source and year indicating that other environmental factors not assessed in this study further influenced N acquisition by the seedlings of the three tree species. PMID:26786538

  11. Population rules can apply to individual plants and affect their architecture: an evaluation on the cushion plant Mulinum spinosum (Apiaceae)

    PubMed Central

    Puntieri, Javier G.; Damascos, María A.; Llancaqueo, Yanina; Svriz, Maya

    2010-01-01

    Background and aims Plants are regarded as populations of modules such as axes and growth units (GUs, i.e. seasonally produced axis segments). Due to their dense arrays of GUs, cushion plants may resemble crowded plant populations in the way the number of components (GUs in plants, individuals in populations) relates to their individual sizes. Methodology The morphological differentiation of GUs and its relationship with biomass accumulation and plant size were studied for the cushion subshrub Mulinum spinosum (Apiaceae), a widespread species in dry areas of Patagonia. In 2009, GUs were sampled from one-quarter of each of 24 adult plants. Within- and between-plant variations in GU length, diameter, number of nodes and biomass were analysed and related to whole-plant size. Principal results Each year, an M. spinosum cushion develops flowering GUs and vegetative GUs. Flowering GUs are larger, twice as numerous and contain two to four times more dry mass (excluding reproductive structures) than vegetative GUs. The hemispherical area of the cushions was positively correlated with the biomass of last-year GUs. The biomass of flowering GUs was negatively correlated with the density of GUs. Mulinum spinosum plants exhibited a notable differentiation between flowering and vegetative GUs, but their axes, i.e. the sequences of GUs, were not differentiated throughout the plants. Flowering GUs comprised a major proportion of each plant's photosynthetic tissues. Conclusions A decrease in the size of flowering GUs and in their number relative to the total number of GUs per plant, parallel to an increase in GU density, is predicted as M. spinosum plants age over years. The assimilative role of vegetative GUs is expected to increase in summer because of their less exposed position in the cushion. These GUs would therefore gain more from warm and dry conditions than flowering GUs. PMID:22476077

  12. Alkaloid Quantities in Endophyte-Infected Tall Fescue are Affected by the Plant-Fungus Combination and Environment.

    PubMed

    Helander, M; Phillips, T; Faeth, S H; Bush, L P; McCulley, R; Saloniemi, I; Saikkonen, K

    2016-02-01

    Many grass species are symbiotic with systemic, vertically-transmitted, asymptomatic Epichloë endophytic fungi. These fungi often produce alkaloids that defend the host against herbivores. We studied how environmental variables affect alkaloids in endophyte-infected tall fescue (Schedonorus phoenix) from three Northern European wild origins and the widely planted US cultivar 'Kentucky-31' (KY31). The plants were grown in identical common garden experiments in Finland and Kentucky for two growing seasons. Plants were left as controls (C) or given water (W), nutrient (N) or water and nutrient (WN) treatments. For 8-10 replications of each plant origin and treatment combination in both experiments, we analyzed ergot alkaloids, lysergic acid, and lolines. In Finland, tall fescue plants produced 50 % more ergot alkaloids compared to plants of the same origin and treatments in Kentucky. Origin of the plants affected the ergot alkaloid concentration at both study sites: the wild origin plants produced 2-4 times more ergot alkaloids than KY31, but the ergot alkaloid concentration of KY31 plants was the same at both locations. Overall lysergic acid content was 60 % higher in plants grown in Kentucky than in those grown in Finland. Nutrient treatments (N, WN) significantly increased ergot alkaloid concentrations in plants from Finland but not in plants from Kentucky. These results suggest that the success of KY31 in US is not due to selection for high ergot alkaloid production but rather other traits associated with the endophyte. In addition, the environmental effects causing variation in alkaloid production of grass-endophyte combinations should be taken into account when using endophyte-infected grasses agriculturally. PMID:26815170

  13. Rhizosphere microbial community composition affects cadmium and zinc uptake by the metal-hyperaccumulating plant Arabidopsis halleri.

    PubMed

    Muehe, E Marie; Weigold, Pascal; Adaktylou, Irini J; Planer-Friedrich, Britta; Kraemer, Ute; Kappler, Andreas; Behrens, Sebastian

    2015-03-01

    The remediation of metal-contaminated soils by phytoextraction depends on plant growth and plant metal accessibility. Soil microorganisms can affect the accumulation of metals by plants either by directly or indirectly stimulating plant growth and activity or by (im)mobilizing and/or complexing metals. Understanding the intricate interplay of metal-accumulating plants with their rhizosphere microbiome is an important step toward the application and optimization of phytoremediation. We compared the effects of a "native" and a strongly disturbed (gamma-irradiated) soil microbial communities on cadmium and zinc accumulation by the plant Arabidopsis halleri in soil microcosm experiments. A. halleri accumulated 100% more cadmium and 15% more zinc when grown on the untreated than on the gamma-irradiated soil. Gamma irradiation affected neither plant growth nor the 1 M HCl-extractable metal content of the soil. However, it strongly altered the soil microbial community composition and overall cell numbers. Pyrosequencing of 16S rRNA gene amplicons of DNA extracted from rhizosphere samples of A. halleri identified microbial taxa (Lysobacter, Streptomyces, Agromyces, Nitrospira, "Candidatus Chloracidobacterium") of higher relative sequence abundance in the rhizospheres of A. halleri plants grown on untreated than on gamma-irradiated soil, leading to hypotheses on their potential effect on plant metal uptake. However, further experimental evidence is required, and wherefore we discuss different mechanisms of interaction of A. halleri with its rhizosphere microbiome that might have directly or indirectly affected plant metal accumulation. Deciphering the complex interactions between A. halleri and individual microbial taxa will help to further develop soil metal phytoextraction as an efficient and sustainable remediation strategy. PMID:25595759

  14. Rhizosphere Microbial Community Composition Affects Cadmium and Zinc Uptake by the Metal-Hyperaccumulating Plant Arabidopsis halleri

    PubMed Central

    Muehe, E. Marie; Weigold, Pascal; Adaktylou, Irini J.; Planer-Friedrich, Britta; Kraemer, Ute; Kappler, Andreas

    2015-01-01

    The remediation of metal-contaminated soils by phytoextraction depends on plant growth and plant metal accessibility. Soil microorganisms can affect the accumulation of metals by plants either by directly or indirectly stimulating plant growth and activity or by (im)mobilizing and/or complexing metals. Understanding the intricate interplay of metal-accumulating plants with their rhizosphere microbiome is an important step toward the application and optimization of phytoremediation. We compared the effects of a “native” and a strongly disturbed (gamma-irradiated) soil microbial communities on cadmium and zinc accumulation by the plant Arabidopsis halleri in soil microcosm experiments. A. halleri accumulated 100% more cadmium and 15% more zinc when grown on the untreated than on the gamma-irradiated soil. Gamma irradiation affected neither plant growth nor the 1 M HCl-extractable metal content of the soil. However, it strongly altered the soil microbial community composition and overall cell numbers. Pyrosequencing of 16S rRNA gene amplicons of DNA extracted from rhizosphere samples of A. halleri identified microbial taxa (Lysobacter, Streptomyces, Agromyces, Nitrospira, “Candidatus Chloracidobacterium”) of higher relative sequence abundance in the rhizospheres of A. halleri plants grown on untreated than on gamma-irradiated soil, leading to hypotheses on their potential effect on plant metal uptake. However, further experimental evidence is required, and wherefore we discuss different mechanisms of interaction of A. halleri with its rhizosphere microbiome that might have directly or indirectly affected plant metal accumulation. Deciphering the complex interactions between A. halleri and individual microbial taxa will help to further develop soil metal phytoextraction as an efficient and sustainable remediation strategy. PMID:25595759

  15. Salt tolerant plants increase nitrogen removal from biofiltration systems affected by saline stormwater.

    PubMed

    Szota, Christopher; Farrell, Claire; Livesley, Stephen J; Fletcher, Tim D

    2015-10-15

    Biofiltration systems are used in urban areas to reduce the concentration and load of nutrient pollutants and heavy metals entering waterways through stormwater runoff. Biofilters can, however be exposed to salt water, through intrusion of seawater in coastal areas which could decrease their ability to intercept and retain pollutants. We measured the effect of adding saline stormwater on pollutant removal by six monocotyledonous species with different levels of salt-tolerance. Carex appressa, Carex bichenoviana, Ficinia nodosa, Gahnia filum, Juncus kraussii and Juncus usitatus were exposed to six concentrations of saline stormwater, equivalent to electrical conductivity readings of: 0.09, 2.3, 5.5, 10.4, 20.0 and 37.6 mS cm(-1). Salt-sensitive species: C. appressa, C. bichenoviana and J. usitatus did not survive ≥10.4 mS cm(-1), removing their ability to take up nitrogen (N). Salt-tolerant species, such as F. nodosa and J. kraussii, maintained N-removal even at the highest salt concentration. However, their levels of water stress and stomatal conductance suggest that N-removal would not be sustained at concentrations ≥10.4 mS cm(-1). Increasing salt concentration indirectly increased phosphorus (P) removal, by converting dissolved forms of P to particulate forms which were retained by filter media. Salt concentrations ≥10 mS cm(-1) also reduced removal efficiency of zinc, manganese and cadmium, but increased removal of iron and lead, regardless of plant species. Our results suggest that biofiltration systems exposed to saline stormwater ≤10 mS cm(-1) can only maintain N-removal when planted with salt-tolerant species, while P removal and immobilisation of heavy metals is less affected by species selection. PMID:26150068

  16. Can plant phloem properties affect the link between ecosystem assimilation and respiration?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mencuccini, M.; Hölttä, T.; Sevanto, S.; Nikinmaa, E.

    2012-04-01

    Phloem transport of carbohydrates in plants under field conditions is currently not well understood. This is largely the result of the lack of techniques suitable for measuring phloem physiological properties continuously under field conditions. This lack of knowledge is currently hampering our efforts to link ecosystem-level processes of carbon fixation, allocation and use, especially belowground. On theoretical grounds, the properties of the transport pathway from canopy to roots must be important in affecting the link between carbon assimilation and respiration, but it is unclear whether their effect is partially or entirely masked by processes occurring in other parts of the ecosystem. One can also predict the characteristic time scales over which these effects should occur and, as consequence, predict whether the transfer of turgor and osmotic signals from the site of carbon assimilation to the sites of carbon use are likely to control respiration. We will present two sources of evidence suggesting that the properties of the phloem transport system may affect processes that are dependent on the supply of carbon substrate, such as root or soil respiration. Firstly, we will summarize the results of a literature survey on soil and ecosystem respiration where the speed of transfer of photosynthetic sugars from the plant canopy to the soil surface was determined. Estimates of the transfer speed could be grouped according to whether the study employed isotopic or canopy soil flux-based techniques. These two groups provided very different estimates of transfer times likely because transport of sucrose molecules, and pressure-concentration waves, in phloem differed. Secondly, we will argue that simultaneous measurements of bark and xylem diameters provide a novel tool to determine the continuous variations of phloem turgor in vivo in the field. We will present a model that interprets these changes in xylem and live bark diameters and present data testing the model

  17. The Gastropod Menace: Slugs on Brassica Plants Affect Caterpillar Survival through Consumption and Interference with Parasitoid Attraction.

    PubMed

    Desurmont, Gaylord A; Zemanova, Miriam A; Turlings, Ted C J

    2016-03-01

    Terrestrial molluscs and insect herbivores play a major role as plant consumers in a number of ecosystems, but their direct and indirect interactions have hardly been explored. The omnivorous nature of slugs makes them potential disrupters of predator-prey relationships, as a direct threat to small insects and through indirect, plant-mediated effects. Here, we examined the effects of the presence of two species of slugs, Arion rufus (native) and A. vulgaris (invasive) on the survivorship of young Pieris brassicae caterpillars when feeding on Brassica rapa plants, and on plant attractiveness to the main natural enemy of P. brassicae, the parasitoid Cotesia glomerata. In two separate predation experiments, caterpillar mortality was significantly higher on plants co-infested with A. rufus or A. vulgaris. Moreover, caterpillar mortality correlated positively with slug mass and leaf consumption by A. vulgaris. At the third trophic level, plants infested with slugs and plants co-infested with slugs and caterpillars were far less attractive to parasitoids than plants damaged by caterpillars only, independently of slug species. Chemical analyses confirmed that volatile emissions, which provide foraging cues for parasitoids, were strongly reduced in co-infested plants. Our study shows that the presence of slugs has the potential to affect insect populations, directly via consumptive effects, and indirectly via changes in plant volatiles that result in a reduced attraction of natural enemies. The fitness cost for P. brassicae imposed by increased mortality in presence of slugs may be counterbalanced by the benefit of escaping its parasitoids. PMID:27002323

  18. Species-abundance--seed-size patterns within a plant community affected by grazing disturbance.

    PubMed

    Wu, Gao-lin; Shang, Zhan-huan; Zhu, Yuan-jun; Ding, Lu-ming; Wang, Dong

    2015-04-01

    Seed size has been advanced as a key factor that influences the dynamics of plant communities, but there are few empirical or theoretical predictions of how community dynamics progress based on seed size patterns. Information on the abundance of adults, seedlings, soil seed banks, seed rains, and the seed mass of 96 species was collected in alpine meadows of the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau (China), which had different levels of grazing disturbance. The relationships between seed-mass-abundance patterns for adults, seedlings, the soil seed bank, and seed rain in the plant community were evaluated using regression models. Results showed that grazing levels affected the relationship between seed size and abundance properties of adult species, seedlings, and the soil seed bank, suggesting that there is a shift in seed-size--species-abundance relationships as a response to the grazing gradient. Grazing had no effect on the pattern of seed-size-seed-rain-abundance at four grazing levels. Grazing also had little effect on the pattern of seed-size--species-abundance and pattern of seed-size--soil-seed-bank-abundance in meadows with no grazing, light grazing, and moderate grazing), but there was a significant negative effect in meadows with heavy grazing. Grazing had little effect on the pattern of seed-size--seedling-abundance with no grazing, but had significant negative effects with light, moderate, and heavy grazing, and the |r| values increased with grazing levels. This indicated that increasing grazing pressure enhanced the advantage of smaller-seeded species in terms of the abundances of adult species, seedlings, and soil seed banks, whereas only the light grazing level promoted the seed rain abundance of larger-seeded species in the plant communities. This study suggests that grazing disturbances are favorable for increasing the species abundance for smaller-seeded species but not for the larger-seeded species in an alpine meadow community. Hence, there is a clear

  19. Genes of the most conserved WOX clade in plants affect root and flower development in Arabidopsis

    PubMed Central

    2008-01-01

    Background The Wuschel related homeobox (WOX) family proteins are key regulators implicated in the determination of cell fate in plants by preventing cell differentiation. A recent WOX phylogeny, based on WOX homeodomains, showed that all of the Physcomitrella patens and Selaginella moellendorffii WOX proteins clustered into a single orthologous group. We hypothesized that members of this group might preferentially share a significant part of their function in phylogenetically distant organisms. Hence, we first validated the limits of the WOX13 orthologous group (WOX13 OG) using the occurrence of other clade specific signatures and conserved intron insertion sites. Secondly, a functional analysis using expression data and mutants was undertaken. Results The WOX13 OG contained the most conserved plant WOX proteins including the only WOX detected in the highly proliferating basal unicellular and photosynthetic organism Ostreococcus tauri. A large expansion of the WOX family was observed after the separation of mosses from other land plants and before monocots and dicots have arisen. In Arabidopsis thaliana, AtWOX13 was dynamically expressed during primary and lateral root initiation and development, in gynoecium and during embryo development. AtWOX13 appeared to affect the floral transition. An intriguing clade, represented by the functional AtWOX14 gene inside the WOX13 OG, was only found in the Brassicaceae. Compared to AtWOX13, the gene expression profile of AtWOX14 was restricted to the early stages of lateral root formation and specific to developing anthers. A mutational insertion upstream of the AtWOX14 homeodomain sequence led to abnormal root development, a delay in the floral transition and premature anther differentiation. Conclusion Our data provide evidence in favor of the WOX13 OG as the clade containing the most conserved WOX genes and established a functional link to organ initiation and development in Arabidopsis, most likely by preventing premature

  20. How do land management practices affect net ecosystem CO2 exchange of an invasive plant infestation?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sonnentag, O.; Detto, M.; Runkle, B.; Kelly, M.; Baldocchi, D. D.

    2009-12-01

    Ecosystem gas and energy exchanges of invasive plant infestations under different land management practices have been subject of few studies and thus little is known. Our goal is to characterize seasonal changes in net ecosystem CO2 exchange (NEE) through the processes of photosynthesis (GEP) and ecosystem respiration (Reco) of a grassland used as pasture yet infested by perennial pepperweed (Lepidium latifolium) in California’s Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta. We analyze eddy-covariance supported by environmental and canopy-scale hyperspectral reflectance measurements acquired in 2007-2009. Our study covers three summer drought periods with slightly different land management practices. Over the study period the site was subject to year-round grazing, and in 2008 the site was additionally mowed. Specific questions we address are a) how does pepperweed flowering affect GEP, b) does a mowing event affect NEE mainly through GEP or Reco, and c) can the combined effects of phenology and mowing on pepperweed NEE potentially be tracked using routinely applied remote sensing techniques? Preliminary results indicate that pepperweed flowering drastically decreases photosynthetic CO2 uptake due to shading by the dense arrangement of white flowers at the canopy top, causing the infestation to be almost CO2 neutral. In contrast, mowing causes the infestation to act as moderate net CO2 sink, mainly due to increased CO2 uptake during regrowth. We demonstrate that spectral regions other than commonly-used red and near-infrared might be more promising for pepperweed monitoring because of its spectral uniqueness during the flowering phase. Our results have important implications for land-use land-cover (LULC) change studies when biological invasions and their management alter ecosystem structure and functioning but not necessarily the respective LULC class.

  1. Cytonuclear interactions affect adaptive traits of the annual plant Arabidopsis thaliana in the field.

    PubMed

    Roux, Fabrice; Mary-Huard, Tristan; Barillot, Elise; Wenes, Estelle; Botran, Lucy; Durand, Stéphanie; Villoutreix, Romain; Martin-Magniette, Marie-Laure; Camilleri, Christine; Budar, Françoise

    2016-03-29

    Although the contribution of cytonuclear interactions to plant fitness variation is relatively well documented at the interspecific level, the prevalence of cytonuclear interactions at the intraspecific level remains poorly investigated. In this study, we set up a field experiment to explore the range of effects that cytonuclear interactions have on fitness-related traits inArabidopsis thaliana To do so, we created a unique series of 56 cytolines resulting from cytoplasmic substitutions among eight natural accessions reflecting within-species genetic diversity. An assessment of these cytolines and their parental lines scored for 28 adaptive whole-organism phenotypes showed that a large proportion of phenotypic traits (23 of 28) were affected by cytonuclear interactions. The effects of these interactions varied from slight but frequent across cytolines to strong in some specific parental pairs. Two parental pairs accounted for half of the significant pairwise interactions. In one parental pair, Ct-1/Sha, we observed symmetrical phenotypic responses between the two nuclear backgrounds when combined with specific cytoplasms, suggesting nuclear differentiation at loci involved in cytonuclear epistasis. In contrast, asymmetrical phenotypic responses were observed in another parental pair, Cvi-0/Sha. In the Cvi-0 nuclear background, fecundity and phenology-related traits were strongly affected by the Sha cytoplasm, leading to a modified reproductive strategy without penalizing total seed production. These results indicate that natural variation in cytoplasmic and nuclear genomes interact to shape integrative traits that contribute to adaptation, thereby suggesting that cytonuclear interactions can play a major role in the evolutionary dynamics ofA. thaliana. PMID:26979961

  2. Cytonuclear interactions affect adaptive traits of the annual plant Arabidopsis thaliana in the field

    PubMed Central

    Roux, Fabrice; Mary-Huard, Tristan; Barillot, Elise; Wenes, Estelle; Botran, Lucy; Durand, Stéphanie; Villoutreix, Romain; Martin-Magniette, Marie-Laure; Camilleri, Christine; Budar, Françoise

    2016-01-01

    Although the contribution of cytonuclear interactions to plant fitness variation is relatively well documented at the interspecific level, the prevalence of cytonuclear interactions at the intraspecific level remains poorly investigated. In this study, we set up a field experiment to explore the range of effects that cytonuclear interactions have on fitness-related traits in Arabidopsis thaliana. To do so, we created a unique series of 56 cytolines resulting from cytoplasmic substitutions among eight natural accessions reflecting within-species genetic diversity. An assessment of these cytolines and their parental lines scored for 28 adaptive whole-organism phenotypes showed that a large proportion of phenotypic traits (23 of 28) were affected by cytonuclear interactions. The effects of these interactions varied from slight but frequent across cytolines to strong in some specific parental pairs. Two parental pairs accounted for half of the significant pairwise interactions. In one parental pair, Ct-1/Sha, we observed symmetrical phenotypic responses between the two nuclear backgrounds when combined with specific cytoplasms, suggesting nuclear differentiation at loci involved in cytonuclear epistasis. In contrast, asymmetrical phenotypic responses were observed in another parental pair, Cvi-0/Sha. In the Cvi-0 nuclear background, fecundity and phenology-related traits were strongly affected by the Sha cytoplasm, leading to a modified reproductive strategy without penalizing total seed production. These results indicate that natural variation in cytoplasmic and nuclear genomes interact to shape integrative traits that contribute to adaptation, thereby suggesting that cytonuclear interactions can play a major role in the evolutionary dynamics of A. thaliana. PMID:26979961

  3. Identification of viral and phytoplasmal agents responsible for diseases affecting plants of Gaillardia Foug. in Lithuania

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Gaillardia plants exhibiting symptoms characteristic of viral and phytoplasmal diseases were collected at botanical gardens and floriculture farms in Lithuania. Cucumber mosaic virus was isolated from diseased plants exhibiting symptoms characterized stunting, color breaking and malformation of flo...

  4. Proteomic analysis reveals suppression of bark chitinases and proteinase inhibitors in citrus plants affected by the citrus sudden death disease.

    PubMed

    Cantú, M D; Mariano, A G; Palma, M S; Carrilho, E; Wulff, N A

    2008-10-01

    Citrus sudden death (CSD) is a disease of unknown etiology that greatly affects sweet oranges grafted on Rangpur lime rootstock, the most important rootstock in Brazilian citriculture. We performed a proteomic analysis to generate information related to this plant pathogen interaction. Protein profiles from healthy, CSD-affected and CSD-tolerant stem barks, were generated using two-dimensional gel electrophoresis. The protein spots were well distributed over a pI range of 3.26 to 9.97 and a molecular weight (MW) range from 7.1 to 120 kDa. The patterns of expressed proteins on 2-DE gels made it possible to distinguish healthy barks from CSD-affected barks. Protein spots with MW around 30 kDa and pI values ranging from 4.5 to 5.2 were down-regulated in the CSD-affected root-stock bark. This set of protein spots was identified as chitinases. Another set of proteins, ranging in pI from 6.1 to 9.6 with an MW of about 20 kDa, were also suppressed in CSD-affected rootstock bark; these were identified as miraculin-like proteins, potential trypsin inhibitors. Down-regulation of chitinases and proteinase inhibitors in CSD-affected plants is relevant since chitinases are well-known pathogenesis-related protein, and their activity against plant pathogens is largely accepted. PMID:18943454

  5. Acclimations to light quality on plant and leaf level affect the vulnerability of pepper (Capsicum annuum L.) to water deficit.

    PubMed

    Hoffmann, Anna M; Noga, Georg; Hunsche, Mauricio

    2015-03-01

    We investigated the influence of light quality on the vulnerability of pepper plants to water deficit. For this purpose plants were cultivated either under compact fluorescence lamps (CFL) or light-emitting diodes (LED) providing similar photon fluence rates (95 µmol m(-2) s(-1)) but distinct light quality. CFL emit a wide-band spectrum with dominant peaks in the green and red spectral region, whereas LEDs offer narrow band spectra with dominant peaks at blue (445 nm) and red (665 nm) regions. After one-week acclimation to light conditions plants were exposed to water deficit by withholding irrigation; this period was followed by a one-week regeneration period and a second water deficit cycle. In general, plants grown under CFL suffered more from water deficit than plants grown under LED modules, as indicated by the impairment of the photosynthetic efficiency of PSII, resulting in less biomass accumulation compared to respective control plants. As affected by water shortage, plants grown under CFL had a stronger decrease in the electron transport rate (ETR) and more pronounced increase in heat dissipation (NPQ). The higher amount of blue light suppressed plant growth and biomass formation, and consequently reduced the water demand of plants grown under LEDs. Moreover, pepper plants exposed to high blue light underwent adjustments at chloroplast level (e.g., higher Chl a/Chl b ratio), increasing the photosynthetic performance under the LED spectrum. Differently than expected, stomatal conductance was comparable for water-deficit and control plants in both light conditions during the stress and recovery phases, indicating only minor adjustments at the stomatal level. Our results highlight the potential of the target-use of light quality to induce structural and functional acclimations improving plant performance under stress situations. PMID:25626402

  6. Seed germination of medicinal plant, fennel (Foeniculum vulgare Mill), as affected by different priming techniques.

    PubMed

    Tahaei, Amirreza; Soleymani, Ali; Shams, Majid

    2016-09-01

    Reduced seed germination is among the most important factors adversely affecting crop stand and subsequent plant growth. Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare Mill) is an important medicinal plant with poor seed germination rate, occasionally. It is accordingly pertinent to find methods which can enhance fennel seed germination and remove the barriers of dormancy breaking. The present experiments studied the effects of two different priming (cold moist stratification and osmopriming) and 14 dormancy breaking techniques (hormonal, osmopriming, biopriming, chemical priming, and hydropriming) on the seed germination and seedling growth of two different fennel genotypes under growth chamber conditions. In the first and second experiment, the priming techniques including the time lengths of cold moist stratification (0, 15, 30, and 45 days) and the concentrations of polyethylene glycol 6000 (PEG6000, osmopriming at -0.99, -1.35, and -2.33 MPa) were used as the main plots. However, in both experiments, the dormancy breaking techniques and fennel genotypes were factorially combined and used as the subplots. Different seed- and seedling-related parameters including germination (%), plumule, radicle and seedling length, average germination time, rate and homogeneity of germination, and seed vigor index were determined. Both priming techniques were efficient on the enhancement of seed germination and seedling growth. Among the dormancy breaking techniques, Aminol Forte (biopriming), kadostim (biopriming), benzyl adenine + kinetin (biopriming), distilled water (hydropriming), gibberellin + kinetin (hormonal priming), and benzyl adenine + kinetin + gibberellin (biopriming) were the most effective ones. The related concentrations were equal to 100 mg/l, 10(-5) M, and 0.4 %. The fennel genotypes reacted significantly different under priming conditions. It is possible to enhance seed germination and seedling growth of fennel using priming and dormancy breaking

  7. How grazing and soil quality affect native and exotic plant diversity in Rocky Mountain grasslands

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Stohlgren, T.J.; Schell, L.D.; Vanden, Heuvel B.

    1999-01-01

    (adjacent and distant 1000-m2 plots) in the same vegetation type overlapped just 48.6 ?? 3.6%, and the ungrazed plots and distant grazed plots overlapped 49.4 ?? 3.6%. Differences in vegetation and soils between grazed and ungrazed sites were minimal in most cases, but soil characteristics and elevation were strongly correlated with native and exotic plant diversity in the study region. For the 78 1000-m2 plots, 59.4% of the variance in total species richness was explained by percentage of silt (coefficient = 0.647, t = 5.107, P < 0.001), elevation (coefficient = 0.012, t = 5.084, P < 0.001), and total foliar cover (coefficient = 0.110, t = 2.104, P < 0.039). Only 12.8% of the variance in exotic species cover (log10cover) was explained by percentage of clay (coefficient = -0.011, t = -2.878, P < 0.005), native species richness (coefficient = -0.011, t = -2.156, P < 0.034), and log10N (coefficient = 2.827, t = 1.860, P < 0.067). Native species cover and exotic species richness and frequency were also significantly positively correlated with percentage of soil N at the 1000-m2 plot scale. Our research led to five broad generalizations about current levels of grazing in these Rocky Mountain grasslands: (1) grazing probably has little effect on native species richness at landscape scales; (2) grazing probably has little effect on the accelerated spread of most exotic plant species at landscape scales; (3) grazing affects local plant species and life-form composition and cover, but spatial variation is considerable; (4) soil characteristics, climate, and disturbances may have a greater effect on plant species diversity than do current levels of grazing; and (5) few plant species show consistent, directional responses to grazing or cessation of grazing.

  8. The impact of global warming on floral traits that affect the selfing rate in a high-altitude plant

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Changes in the abiotic environment, as those expected under global warming, can influence plant mating systems through changes in floral traits that affect selfing. Herkogamy (spatial separation of male and female functions within a flower), dichogamy (temporal separation) and total flower number af...

  9. Corn Response as Affected by Planting Distance from the Center of Strip-Till Fertilized Rows

    PubMed Central

    Adee, Eric; Hansel, Fernando D.; Ruiz Diaz, Dorivar A.; Janssen, Keith

    2016-01-01

    Strip-till has been used at a large scale in east central Kansas as an alternative to earlier planting dates under a no-till system. To determine the effects of planting corn (Zea mays) under previously established strip-tilled fertilized rows, experiments were conducted on an Osage silty clay loam soil in 2006 and 2008 and on a Woodson silt loam soil in 2009, 2010, and 2011 using three different planting distances from the strip-tilled fertilized rows (0, 10, 20, and 38 cm) with a strip-till operation performed between 1 and 73 days before planting. The depth of the strip-till fertilizer application was 13–15 cm below the soil surface. Corn that was planted 10 cm from the fertilized row showed greater early season growth, higher plant population, and grain yield. Planting 20 and 38 cm from the center of the fertilized rows showed none of the benefits that are typically associated with strip-tillage system. Enough time should be allowed between the strip-till operation and planting to reach satisfactory soil conditions (e.g., moist and firm seedbed). Our results suggest that the best location for planting strip-tilled fertilized corn vary depending on soil and climatic conditions as well as the time between fertilizer application with the strip-till operation and planting. With fewer number of days, planting directly on the center of fertilized strip-till resulted in decreased plant population and lower grain yield. However, the greatest yield benefit across different planting conditions was attained when planting within 10 cm of the strip. PMID:27588024

  10. Corn Response as Affected by Planting Distance from the Center of Strip-Till Fertilized Rows.

    PubMed

    Adee, Eric; Hansel, Fernando D; Ruiz Diaz, Dorivar A; Janssen, Keith

    2016-01-01

    Strip-till has been used at a large scale in east central Kansas as an alternative to earlier planting dates under a no-till system. To determine the effects of planting corn (Zea mays) under previously established strip-tilled fertilized rows, experiments were conducted on an Osage silty clay loam soil in 2006 and 2008 and on a Woodson silt loam soil in 2009, 2010, and 2011 using three different planting distances from the strip-tilled fertilized rows (0, 10, 20, and 38 cm) with a strip-till operation performed between 1 and 73 days before planting. The depth of the strip-till fertilizer application was 13-15 cm below the soil surface. Corn that was planted 10 cm from the fertilized row showed greater early season growth, higher plant population, and grain yield. Planting 20 and 38 cm from the center of the fertilized rows showed none of the benefits that are typically associated with strip-tillage system. Enough time should be allowed between the strip-till operation and planting to reach satisfactory soil conditions (e.g., moist and firm seedbed). Our results suggest that the best location for planting strip-tilled fertilized corn vary depending on soil and climatic conditions as well as the time between fertilizer application with the strip-till operation and planting. With fewer number of days, planting directly on the center of fertilized strip-till resulted in decreased plant population and lower grain yield. However, the greatest yield benefit across different planting conditions was attained when planting within 10 cm of the strip. PMID:27588024

  11. Elevated atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration affects interactions between Spodoptera exigua (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) larvae and two host plant species outdoors

    SciTech Connect

    Caulfield, F.; Bunce, J.A. )

    1994-08-01

    Beet armyworm, Spodoptera exigua (Huebner), larvae were placed on sugarbeet (Beta vulgaris L.) and pigweed (Amaranthus hybridus L.) plants in outdoor chambers in which the plants were growing at either the ambient ([approximately] 350 [mu]l liter[sup [minus]1]) or ambient plus 350 [mu]l liter[sup [minus]1] ([approximately] 700 [mu]l liter[sup [minus]1]) carbon dioxide concentration. A series of experiments was performed to determine if larvae reduced plant growth differently at the two carbon dioxide concentrations in either species and if the insect growth or survival differed with carbon dioxide concentration. Leaf nitrogen, water, starch, and soluble carbohydrate contents were measured to assess carbon dioxide concentration effects on leaf quality. Insect feeding significantly reduced plant growth in sugarbeet plants at 350 [mu]l liter[sup [minus]1] but not at 700 [mu]l liter[sup [minus]1] nor in pigweed at either carbon dioxide concentration. Larval survival was greater on sugarbeet plants at the elevated carbon dioxide concentration. Increased survival occurred only if the insects were at the elevated carbon dioxide concentration and consumed leaf material grown at the elevated concentration. Leaf quality was only marginally affected by growth at elevated carbon dioxide concentration in these experiments. The results indicate that in designing experiments to predict effects of elevated atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations on plant-insect interactions, both plants and insects should be exposed to the experimental carbon dioxide concentrations, as well as to as realistic environmental conditions as possible.

  12. Factors Affecting Distribution of Estrogenicity in the Influents, Effluents, and Biosolids of Canadian Wastewater Treatment Plants.

    PubMed

    Shieh, Ben H H; Louie, Alvin; Law, Francis C P

    2016-05-01

    Canadian wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) release significant amounts of estrogenic chemicals to nearby surface waters. Environmental estrogens have been implicated as the causative agents of many developmental and reproductive problems in animals, including fish. The goals of this study were to assess the estrogenic activity in the influents, effluents, and biosolids of thirteen Canadian WWTPs using the yeast estrogen screen (YES) bioassay and to investigate whether factors, such as wastewater treatment method, sample storage, extraction efficiency, population, and summer/winter temperature had any effects on the distribution of estrogenicity in the WWTPs. Results of the study showed that estrogenicity from the influent to the effluent decreased in seven WWTPs, increased in two WWTPs, and did not change in four WWTPs during the winter. Estrogenic concentrations generally decreased in the order of biosolids > influents > effluents and ranged from 1.57 to 24.6, 1.25E-02 to 3.84E-01, and 9.46E-03 to 3.90E-01 ng estradiol equivalents/g or ml, respectively. The estrogenicity in the final effluents, but not those in the influents and biosolids, was significantly higher in the summer than the winter. Among the WWTP treatment methods, advanced, biological nutrient removal appeared to be the most effective method to remove estrogenic chemicals from wastewaters in Canada. Our studies help to identify factors or mechanisms that affect the distribution of estrogenicity in WWTPs, providing a better understanding on the discharges of estrogenic chemicals from WWTPs. PMID:26433808

  13. The non-psychoactive plant cannabinoid, cannabidiol affects cholesterol metabolism-related genes in microglial cells.

    PubMed

    Rimmerman, Neta; Juknat, Ana; Kozela, Ewa; Levy, Rivka; Bradshaw, Heather B; Vogel, Zvi

    2011-08-01

    Cannabidiol (CBD) is a non-psychoactive plant cannabinoid that is clinically used in a 1:1 mixture with the psychoactive cannabinoid Δ(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) for the treatment of neuropathic pain and spasticity in multiple sclerosis. Our group previously reported that CBD exerts anti-inflammatory effects on microglial cells. In addition, we found that CBD treatment increases the accumulation of the endocannabinoid N-arachidonoyl ethanolamine (AEA), thus enhancing endocannabinoid signaling. Here we proceeded to investigate the effects of CBD on the modulation of lipid-related genes in microglial cells. Cell viability was tested using FACS analysis, AEA levels were measured using LC/MS/MS, gene array analysis was validated with real-time qPCR, and cytokine release was measured using ELISA. We report that CBD significantly upregulated the mRNAs of the enzymes sterol-O-acyl transferase (Soat2), which synthesizes cholesteryl esters, and of sterol 27-hydroxylase (Cyp27a1). In addition, CBD increased the mRNA of the lipid droplet-associated protein, perilipin2 (Plin2). Moreover, we found that pretreatment of the cells with the cholesterol chelating agent, methyl-β-cyclodextrin (MBCD), reversed the CBD-induced increase in Soat2 mRNA but not in Plin2 mRNA. Incubation with AEA increased the level of Plin2, but not of Soat2 mRNA. Furthermore, MBCD treatment did not affect the reduction by CBD of the LPS-induced release of the proinflammatory cytokine IL-1β. CBD treatment modulates cholesterol homeostasis in microglial cells, and pretreatment with MBCD reverses this effect without interfering with CBD's anti-inflammatory effects. The effects of the CBD-induced increase in AEA accumulation on lipid-gene expression are discussed. PMID:21533611

  14. Plant Products Affect Growth and Digestive Efficiency of Cultured Florida Pompano (Trachinotus carolinus) Fed Compounded Diets

    PubMed Central

    Lech, Gregory P.; Reigh, Robert C.

    2012-01-01

    Costs of compounded diets containing fish meal as a primary protein source can be expected to rise as fish meal prices increase in response to static supply and growing demand. Alternatives to fish meal are needed to reduce production costs in many aquaculture enterprises. Some plant proteins are potential replacements for fish meal because of their amino acid composition, lower cost and wide availability. In this study, we measured utilization of soybean meal (SBM) and soy protein concentrate (SPC) by Florida pompano fed compounded diets, to determine the efficacy of these products as fish meal replacements. We also calculated apparent digestibility coefficients (ADCs) for canola meal (CM), corn gluten meal (CGM), and distillers dried grains with solubles (DDGS), following typical methods for digestibility trials. Juvenile Florida pompano were fed fish-meal-free diets containing graded levels of SBM and SPC, and weight gain was compared to a control diet that contained SBM, SPC, and fish meal. Fish fed diets that contained 25–30 percent SBM in combination with 43–39 percent SPC had weight gain equivalent to fish fed the control diet with fish meal, while weight gain of fish fed other soy combinations was significantly less than that of the control group. Apparent crude protein digestibility of CGM was significantly higher than that of DDGS but not significantly different from CM. Apparent energy digestibility of DDGS was significantly lower than CGM but significantly higher than CM. Findings suggested that composition of the reference diet used in a digestibility trial affects the values of calculated ADCs, in addition to the chemical and physical attributes of the test ingredient. PMID:22536344

  15. Using digital time-lapse cameras to monitor species-specific understorey and overstorey phenology in support of wildlife habitat assessment.

    PubMed

    Bater, Christopher W; Coops, Nicholas C; Wulder, Michael A; Hilker, Thomas; Nielsen, Scott E; McDermid, Greg; Stenhouse, Gordon B

    2011-09-01

    Critical to habitat management is the understanding of not only the location of animal food resources, but also the timing of their availability. Grizzly bear (Ursus arctos) diets, for example, shift seasonally as different vegetation species enter key phenological phases. In this paper, we describe the use of a network of seven ground-based digital camera systems to monitor understorey and overstorey vegetation within species-specific regions of interest. Established across an elevation gradient in western Alberta, Canada, the cameras collected true-colour (RGB) images daily from 13 April 2009 to 27 October 2009. Fourth-order polynomials were fit to an RGB-derived index, which was then compared to field-based observations of phenological phases. Using linear regression to statistically relate the camera and field data, results indicated that 61% (r (2) = 0.61, df = 1, F = 14.3, p = 0.0043) of the variance observed in the field phenological phase data is captured by the cameras for the start of the growing season and 72% (r (2) = 0.72, df = 1, F = 23.09, p = 0.0009) of the variance in length of growing season. Based on the linear regression models, the mean absolute differences in residuals between predicted and observed start of growing season and length of growing season were 4 and 6 days, respectively. This work extends upon previous research by demonstrating that specific understorey and overstorey species can be targeted for phenological monitoring in a forested environment, using readily available digital camera technology and RGB-based vegetation indices. PMID:21082343

  16. The presence of Bt-transgenic oilseed rape in wild mustard populations affects plant growth.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yongbo; Stewart, C Neal; Li, Junsheng; Huang, Hai; Zhang, Xitao

    2015-12-01

    The adventitious presence of transgenic plants in wild plant populations is of ecological and regulatory concern, but the consequences of adventitious presence are not well understood. Here, we introduced Bacillus thuringiensis Cry1Ac (Bt)-transgenic oilseed rape (Bt OSR, Brassica napus) with various frequencies into wild mustard (Brassica juncea) populations. We sought to better understand the adventitious presence of this transgenic insecticidal crop in a wild-relative plant population. We assessed the factors of competition, resource availability and diamondback moth (Plutella xylostella) infestation on plant population dynamics. As expected, Bt OSR performed better than wild mustard in mixed populations under herbivore attack in habitats with enough resources, whereas wild mustard had higher fitness when Bt OSR was rarer in habitats with limited resources. Results suggest that the presence of insect-resistant transgenic plants could decrease the growth of wild mustard and Bt OSR plants and their populations, especially under high herbivore pressure. PMID:26338267

  17. Pulverizer tramp iron problems affect coal switching at Union Electric`s Labadie Plant

    SciTech Connect

    Fife, P.A.; Mahr, D.

    1997-07-01

    Union Electric`s Labadie Plant, is a 2400 MWe (4 x 600) coal-fired power generating plant. It is located 35 miles west of St. Louis. The four units were commissioned between 1970 and 1973. Major plant equipment is summarized. Coal is delivered via unit-trains and stacked by two tower style, radial stackers. The plant annually consumes approximately six million tons of coal. In 1981, a coal blending system was retrofitted to the plant. This system features a traveling stacker on an elevated berm and rotary plow reclaimers. The coal blending system feeds all four units. Bins weigh feeders, and belt scales precisely control blending proportions. The blending system has served the plant, increasing fuel flexibility in the types and blends of coal that can be used.

  18. Simulated climate-vegetation interaction in semi-arid regions affected by plant diversity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Claussen, M.; Bathiany, S.; Brovkin, V.; Kleinen, T.

    2013-11-01

    The end of the African Humid Period between 6,000 and 4,000 years ago was associated with large changes in precipitation and vegetation cover. Sediment records from Lake Yoa, Chad, show a gradual decline in precipitation and fluctuation in vegetation over this interval, and have been suggested to demonstrate a weak interaction between climate and vegetation. However, interpretation of these data has neglected the potential effects of plant diversity on the stability of the climate-vegetation system. Here we use a conceptual model that represents plant diversity in terms of moisture requirement. Some of the plant types simulated are sensitive to changes in precipitation, which alone would lead to an unstable system with the possibility of abrupt changes. Other plants are more resilient, resulting in a stable system that changes gradually. We demonstrate that plant diversity tends to attenuate the instability of the interaction between climate and sensitive plant types, whereas it reduces the stability of the interaction between climate and less-sensitive plant types. Hence, despite large sensitivities of individual plant types to precipitation, a gradual decline in precipitation and shift in mean vegetation cover can occur. However, we suggest that the system could become unstable if some plant types were removed or introduced, leading to an abrupt regime shift.

  19. Conventional and organic soil fertility management practices affect corn plant nutrition and Ostrinia nubilalis (Lepidoptera: Crambidae) larval performance.

    PubMed

    Murrell, Ebony G; Cullen, Eileen M

    2014-10-01

    Few studies compare how different soil fertilization practices affect plant mineral content and insect performance in organic systems. This study examined: 1) The European corn borer, Ostrinia nubilalis (Hübner), larval response on corn (Zea mays L.) grown in field soils with different soil management histories; and 2) resilience of these plants to O. nubilalis herbivory. Treatments included: 1) standard organic--organically managed soil fertilized with dairy manure and 2 yr of alfalfa (Medicago sativa L.) in the rotation; 2) basic cation saturation ratio--organically managed soil fertilized with dairy manure and alfalfa nitrogen credits, plus addition of gypsum (CaSO4·2H2O) according to the soil balance hypothesis; and 3) conventional--conventionally managed soil fertilized with synthetic fertilizers. Corn plants were reared to maturity in a greenhouse, and then infested with 0-40 O. nubilalis larvae for 17 d. O. nubilalis exhibited negative competitive response to increasing larval densities. Mean development time was significantly faster for larvae consuming basic cation saturation ratio plants than those on standard organic plants, with intermediate development time on conventional plants. Neither total yield (number of kernels) nor proportion kernels damaged differed among soil fertility treatments. Soil nutrients differed significantly in S and in Ca:Mg and Ca:K ratios, but principal components analysis of plant tissue samples taken before O. nubilalis infestation showed that S, Fe, and Cu contributed most to differences in plant nutrient profiles among soil fertility treatments. Results demonstrate that different fertilization regimens can significantly affect insect performance within the context of organic systems, but the effects in this study were relatively minor compared with effects of intraspecific competition. PMID:25203485

  20. Soil moisture variations affect short-term plant-microbial competition for ammonium, glycine, and glutamate

    PubMed Central

    Månsson, Katarina F; Olsson, Magnus O; Falkengren-Grerup, Ursula; Bengtsson, Göran

    2014-01-01

    We tested whether the presence of plant roots would impair the uptake of ammonium (), glycine, and glutamate by microorganisms in a deciduous forest soil exposed to constant or variable moisture in a short-term (24-h) experiment. The uptake of 15NH4 and dual labeled amino acids by the grass Festuca gigantea L. and soil microorganisms was determined in planted and unplanted soils maintained at 60% WHC (water holding capacity) or subject to drying and rewetting. The experiment used a design by which competition was tested in soils that were primed by plant roots to the same extent in the planted and unplanted treatments. Festuca gigantea had no effect on microbial N uptake in the constant moist soil, but its presence doubled the microbial uptake in the dried and rewetted soil compared with the constant moist. The drying and rewetting reduced by half or more the uptake by F. gigantea, despite more than 60% increase in the soil concentration of . At the same time, the amino acid and -N became equally valued in the plant uptake, suggesting that plants used amino acids to compensate for the lower acquisition. Our results demonstrate the flexibility in plant-microbial use of different N sources in response to soil moisture fluctuations and emphasize the importance of including transient soil conditions in experiments on resource competition between plants and soil microorganisms. Competition between plants and microorganisms for N is demonstrated by a combination of removal of one of the potential competitors, the plant, and subsequent observations of the uptake of N in the organisms in soils that differ only in the physical presence and absence of the plant during a short assay. Those conditions are necessary to unequivocally test for competition. PMID:24772283

  1. Retention of OsNMD3 in the cytoplasm disturbs protein synthesis efficiency and affects plant development in rice.

    PubMed

    Shi, Yanyun; Liu, Xiangling; Li, Rui; Gao, Yaping; Xu, Zuopeng; Zhang, Baocai; Zhou, Yihua

    2014-07-01

    The ribosome is the basic machinery for translation, and biogenesis of ribosomes involves many coordinated events. However, knowledge about ribosomal dynamics in higher plants is very limited. This study chose a highly conserved trans-factor, the 60S ribosomal subunit nuclear export adaptor NMD3, to characterize the mechanism of ribosome biogenesis in the monocot plant Oryza sativa (rice). O. sativa NMD3 (OsNMD3) shares all the common motifs and shuttles between the nucleus and cytoplasm via CRM1/XPO1. A dominant negative form of OsNMD3 with a truncated nuclear localization sequence (OsNMD3(ΔNLS)) was retained in the cytoplasm, consequently interfering with the release of OsNMD3 from pre-60S particles and disturbing the assembly of ribosome subunits. Analyses of the transactivation activity and cellulose biosynthesis level revealed low protein synthesis efficiency in the transgenic plants compared with the wild-type plants. Pharmaceutical treatments demonstrated structural alterations in ribosomes in the transgenic plants. Moreover, global expression profiles of the wild-type and transgenic plants were investigated using the Illumina RNA sequencing approach. These expression profiles suggested that overexpression of OsNMD3(ΔNLS) affected ribosome biogenesis and certain basic pathways, leading to pleiotropic abnormalities in plant growth. Taken together, these results strongly suggest that OsNMD3 is important for ribosome assembly and the maintenance of normal protein synthesis efficiency. PMID:24723395

  2. Overexpression of OsDof12 affects plant architecture in rice (Oryza sativa L.)

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Qi; Li, Dayong; Li, Dejun; Liu, Xue; Zhao, Xianfeng; Li, Xiaobing; Li, Shigui; Zhu, Lihuang

    2015-01-01

    Dof (DNA binding with one finger) proteins, a class of plant-specific transcription factors, are involved in plant growth and developmental processes and stress responses. However, their biological functions remain to be elucidated, especially in rice (Oryza sativa L.). Previously, we have reported that OsDof12 can promote rice flowering under long-day conditions. Here, we further investigated the other important agronomical traits of the transgenic plants overexpressing OsDof12 and found that overexpressing OsDof12 could lead to reduced plant height, erected leaf, shortened leaf blade, and smaller panicle resulted from decreased primary and secondary branches number. These results implied that OsDof12 is involved in rice plant architecture formation. Furthermore, we performed a series of Brassinosteroid (BR)-responsive tests and found that overexpression of OsDof12 could also result in BR hyposensitivity. Of note, in WT plants the expression of OsDof12 was found up-regulated by BR treatment while in OsDof12 overexpression plants two positive BR signaling regulators, OsBRI1 and OsBZR1, were significantly down-regulated, indicating that OsDof12 may act as a negative BR regulator in rice. Taken together, our results suggested that overexpression of OsDof12 could lead to altered plant architecture by suppressing BR signaling. Thus, OsDof12 might be used as a new potential genetic regulator for future rice molecular breeding. PMID:26500670

  3. Decoupling factors affecting plant diversity and cover on extensive green roofs.

    PubMed

    MacIvor, J Scott; Margolis, Liat; Puncher, Curtis L; Carver Matthews, Benjamin J

    2013-11-30

    Supplemental irrigation systems are often specified on green roofs to ensure plant cover and growth, both important components of green roof performance and aesthetics. Properties of the growing media environment too can alter the assemblage of plant species able to thrive. In this study we determine how plant cover, above ground biomass and species diversity are influenced by irrigation and growing media. Grass and forb vegetative cover and biomass were significantly greater in organic based growing media but there was no effect of supplemental irrigation, with two warm season grasses dominating in those treatments receiving no supplemental irrigation. On the other hand, plant diversity declined without irrigation in organic media, and having no irrigation in inorganic growing media resulted in almost a complete loss of cover. Sedum biomass was less in inorganic growing media treatments and species dominance shifted when growing media organic content increased. Our results demonstrate that supplemental irrigation is required to maintain plant diversity on an extensive green roof, but not necessarily plant cover or biomass. These results provide evidence that planting extensive green roofs with a mix of plant species can ensure the survival of some species; maintaining cover and biomass when supplemental irrigation is turned off to conserve water, or during extreme drought. PMID:24100190

  4. Salt tolerance and stress level affect plant biomass-density relationships and neighbor effects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yu, Zhenxing; Chen, Wenwen; Zhang, Qian; Yang, Haishui; Tang, Jianjun; Weiner, Jacob; Chen, Xin

    2014-07-01

    It has been shown that plant biomass-density relationships are altered under extreme or stressed conditions. We do not know whether variation in biomass-density relationships is a direct result of stress tolerance or occurs via changes in plant-plant interactions. Here, we evaluated biomass-density relationships and neighbor effects in six plant species that differ in salt tolerance in a salt marsh, and conducted a literature review of biomass-density relationship under higher and lower stress levels. Our field study showed that both neighbor effects and the exponent of the biomass-density relationship (α) varied among plant species with different degrees of salt tolerance. There was a positive relationship between neighbor effects (measured as relative interaction index) and α-value among the tested species. The literature review showed that α and its variation increased under higher stress. Our results indicate that plant species with different salinity tolerance differ in the direction and strength of neighbor effects, resulting in variation in biomass-density relationships. Our results support the hypothesis that differences in biomass-density relationships among species are not due to differences in stress tolerance alone, they are mediated by changes in plant-plant interactions.

  5. Are herbage yield and yield stability affected by plant species diversity in sown pasture mixtures?

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A tenet of plant biodiversity theory in grasslands is that increased diversity contributes to the stability of ecosystems. In managed grasslands, such as pastures, greater stability of herbage production as a result of increased plant species diversity would be beneficial. In this study, I combined ...

  6. Overexpression of an Arabidopsis heterogeneous nuclear ribonucleoprotein gene, AtRNP1, affects plant growth and reduces plant tolerance to drought and salt stresses.

    PubMed

    Wang, Zhenyu; Zhao, Xiuyang; Wang, Bing; Liu, Erlong; Chen, Ni; Zhang, Wei; Liu, Heng

    2016-04-01

    Heterogeneous nuclear ribonucleoproteins (hnRNPs) participate in diverse regulations of plant growth and environmental stress responses. In this work, an Arabidopsis hnRNP of unknown function, AtRNP1, was investigated. We found that AtRNP1 gene is highly expressed in rosette and cauline leaves, and slightly induced under drought, salt, osmotic and ABA stresses. AtRNP1 protein is localized to both the nucleus and cytoplasm. We performed homologous overexpression of AtRNP1 and found that the transgenic plants showed shortened root length and plant height, and accelerated flowering. In addition, the transgenic plants also showed reduced tolerance to drought, salt, osmotic and ABA stresses. Further studies revealed that under both normal and stress conditions, the proline contents in the transgenic plants are markedly decreased, associated with reduced expression levels of a proline synthase gene and several stress-responsive genes. These results suggested that the overexpression of AtRNP1 negatively affects plant growth and abiotic stress tolerance. PMID:26923071

  7. Drought induced changes of plant belowground carbon allocation affect soil microbial community function in a subalpine meadow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fuchslueger, L.; Bahn, M.; Fritz, K.; Hasibeder, R.; Richter, A.

    2012-12-01

    There is growing evidence that climate extremes may affect ecosystem carbon dynamics more strongly than gradual changes in temperatures or precipitation. Climate projections suggest more frequent heat waves accompanied by extreme drought periods in many parts of Europe, including the Alps. Drought is considered to decrease plant C uptake and turnover, which may in turn decrease belowground C allocation and potentially has significant consequences for microbial community composition and functioning. However, information on effects of drought on C dynamics at the plant-soil interface in real ecosystems is still scarce. Our study aimed at understanding how summer drought affects soil microbial community composition and the uptake of recently assimilated plant C by different microbial groups in grassland. We hypothesized that under drought 1) the microbial community shifts, fungi being less affected than bacteria, 2) plants decrease belowground C allocation, which further reduces C transfer to soil microbes and 3) the combined effects of belowground C allocation, reduced soil C transport due to reduced soil moisture and shift in microbial communities cause an accumulation of extractable organic C in the soil. Our study was conducted as part of a rain-exclusion experiment in a subalpine meadow in the Austrian Central Alps. After eight weeks of rain exclusion we pulse labelled drought and control plots with 13CO2 and traced C in plant biomass, extractable organic C (EOC) and soil microbial communities using phospholipid fatty acids (PLFA). Drought induced a shift of the microbial community composition: gram-positive bacteria became more dominant, whereas gram-negative bacteria were not affected by drought. Also the relative abundance of fungal biomass was not affected by drought. While total microbial biomass (as estimated by total microbial PLFA content) increased during drought, less 13C was taken up. This reduction was pronounced for bacterial biomarkers. It reflects

  8. Volatiles produced by soil-borne endophytic bacteria increase plant pathogen resistance and affect tritrophic interactions

    PubMed Central

    Ton, Jurriaan; Brandenburg, Anna; Karlen, Danielle; Zopfi, Jakob; Turlings, Ted C. J.

    2014-01-01

    Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) released by soil microorganisms influence plant growth and pathogen resistance. Yet, very little is known about their influence on herbivores and higher trophic levels. We studied the origin and role of a major bacterial VOC, 2,3-butanediol (2,3-BD), on plant growth, pathogen and herbivore resistance, and the attraction of natural enemies in maize. One of the major contributors to 2,3-BD in the headspace of soil-grown maize seedlings was identified as Enterobacter aerogenes, an endophytic bacterium that colonizes the plants. The production of 2,3-BD by E. aerogenes rendered maize plants more resistant against the Northern corn leaf blight fungus Setosphaeria turcica. On the contrary, E. aerogenes-inoculated plants were less resistant against the caterpillar Spodoptera littoralis. The effect of 2,3-BD on the attraction of the parasitoid Cotesia marginiventris was more variable: 2,3-BD application to the headspace of the plants had no effect on the parasitoids, but application to the soil increased parasitoid attraction. Furthermore, inoculation of seeds with E. aerogenes decreased plant attractiveness, whereas inoculation of soil with a total extract of soil microbes increased parasitoid attraction, suggesting that the effect of 2,3-BD on the parasitoid is indirect and depends on the composition of the microbial community. PMID:24127750

  9. Volatiles produced by soil-borne endophytic bacteria increase plant pathogen resistance and affect tritrophic interactions.

    PubMed

    D'Alessandro, Marco; Erb, Matthias; Ton, Jurriaan; Brandenburg, Anna; Karlen, Danielle; Zopfi, Jakob; Turlings, Ted C J

    2014-04-01

    Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) released by soil microorganisms influence plant growth and pathogen resistance. Yet, very little is known about their influence on herbivores and higher trophic levels. We studied the origin and role of a major bacterial VOC, 2,3-butanediol (2,3-BD), on plant growth, pathogen and herbivore resistance, and the attraction of natural enemies in maize. One of the major contributors to 2,3-BD in the headspace of soil-grown maize seedlings was identified as Enterobacter aerogenes, an endophytic bacterium that colonizes the plants. The production of 2,3-BD by E. aerogenes rendered maize plants more resistant against the Northern corn leaf blight fungus Setosphaeria turcica. On the contrary, E. aerogenes-inoculated plants were less resistant against the caterpillar Spodoptera littoralis. The effect of 2,3-BD on the attraction of the parasitoid Cotesia marginiventris was more variable: 2,3-BD application to the headspace of the plants had no effect on the parasitoids, but application to the soil increased parasitoid attraction. Furthermore, inoculation of seeds with E. aerogenes decreased plant attractiveness, whereas inoculation of soil with a total extract of soil microbes increased parasitoid attraction, suggesting that the effect of 2,3-BD on the parasitoid is indirect and depends on the composition of the microbial community. PMID:24127750

  10. Plant Trait Assembly Affects Superiority of Grazer's Foraging Strategies in Species-Rich Grasslands

    PubMed Central

    Mládek, Jan; Mládková, Pavla; Hejcmanová, Pavla; Dvorský, Miroslav; Pavlu, Vilém; De Bello, Francesco; Duchoslav, Martin; Hejcman, Michal; Pakeman, Robin J.

    2013-01-01

    Background Current plant – herbivore interaction models and experiments with mammalian herbivores grazing plant monocultures show the superiority of a maximizing forage quality strategy (MFQ) over a maximizing intake strategy (MI). However, there is a lack of evidence whether grazers comply with the model predictions under field conditions. Methodology/Findings We assessed diet selection of sheep (Ovis aries) using plant functional traits in productive mesic vs. low-productivity dry species-rich grasslands dominated by resource-exploitative vs. resource-conservative species respectively. Each grassland type was studied in two replicates for two years. We investigated the first grazing cycle in a set of 288 plots with a diameter of 30 cm, i.e. the size of sheep feeding station. In mesic grasslands, high plot defoliation was associated with community weighted means of leaf traits referring to high forage quality, i.e. low leaf dry matter content (LDMC) and high specific leaf area (SLA), with a high proportion of legumes and the most with high community weighted mean of forage indicator value. In contrast in dry grasslands, high community weighted mean of canopy height, an estimate of forage quantity, was the best predictor of plot defoliation. Similar differences in selection on forage quality vs. quantity were detected within plots. Sheep selected plants with higher forage indicator values than the plot specific community weighted mean of forage indicator value in mesic grasslands whereas taller plants were selected in dry grasslands. However, at this scale sheep avoided legumes and plants with higher SLA, preferred plants with higher LDMC while grazing plants with higher forage indicator values in mesic grasslands. Conclusions Our findings indicate that MFQ appears superior over MI only in habitats with a predominance of resource-exploitative species. Furthermore, plant functional traits (LDMC, SLA, nitrogen fixer) seem to be helpful correlates of forage quality

  11. Plant Quantity Affects Development and Survival of a Gregarious Insect Herbivore and Its Endoparasitoid Wasp

    PubMed Central

    Fei, Minghui; Gols, Rieta; Zhu, Feng; Harvey, Jeffrey A.

    2016-01-01

    Virtually all studies of plant-herbivore-natural enemy interactions focus on plant quality as the major constraint on development and survival. However, for many gregarious feeding insect herbivores that feed on small or ephemeral plants, the quantity of resources is much more limiting, yet this area has received virtually no attention. Here, in both lab and semi-field experiments using tents containing variably sized clusters of food plants, we studied the effects of periodic food deprivation in a tri-trophic system where quantitative constraints are profoundly important on insect performance. The large cabbage white Pieris brassicae, is a specialist herbivore of relatively small wild brassicaceous plants that grow in variable densities, with black mustard (Brassica nigra) being one of the most important. Larvae of P. brassicae are in turn attacked by a specialist endoparasitoid wasp, Cotesia glomerata. Increasing the length of food deprivation of newly molted final instar caterpillars significantly decreased herbivore and parasitoid survival and biomass, but shortened their development time. Moreover, the ability of caterpillars to recover when provided with food again was correlated with the length of the food deprivation period. In outdoor tents with natural vegetation, we created conditions similar to those faced by P. brassicae in nature by manipulating plant density. Low densities of B. nigra lead to potential starvation of P. brassicae broods and their parasitoids, replicating nutritional conditions of the lab experiments. The ability of both unparasitized and parasitized caterpillars to find corner plants was similar but decreased with central plant density. Survival of both the herbivore and parasitoid increased with plant density and was higher for unparasitized than for parasitized caterpillars. Our results, in comparison with previous studies, reveal that quantitative constraints are far more important that qualitative constraints on the performance of

  12. Thermal tolerance affects mutualist attendance in an ant-plant protection mutualism

    PubMed Central

    Fitzpatrick, Ginny; Lanan, Michele C.; Bronstein, Judith L.

    2014-01-01

    Mutualism is an often-complex interaction among multiple species, each of which may respond differently to abiotic conditions. The effects of temperature on the formation, dissolution, and success of these and other species interactions remain poorly understood. We studied the thermal ecology of the mutualism between the cactus Ferocactus wislizeni and its ant defenders (Forelius pruinosus, Crematogaster opuntiae, Solenopsis aurea, and Solenopsis xyloni) in the Sonoran Desert, USA. The ants are attracted to extrafloral nectar produced by the plants and in exchange protect the plants from herbivores; there is a hierarchy of mutualist effectiveness based on aggression toward herbivores. We determined the relationship between temperature and ant activity on plants, the thermal tolerance of each ant species, and ant activity in relation to the thermal environment of plants. Temperature played a role in determining which species interact as mutualists. Three of the four ant species abandoned the plants during the hottest part of the day (up to 40°C), returning when surface temperature began to decrease in the afternoon. The least effective ant mutualist, F. pruinosus, had a significantly higher critical thermal maximum than the other three species, was active across the entire range of plant surface temperatures observed (13.8-57.0°C), and visited plants that reached the highest temperatures. F. pruinosus occupied some plants full-time and invaded plants occupied by more dominant species when those species were thermally excluded. Combining data on thermal tolerance and mutualist effectiveness provides a potentially powerful tool for predicting the effects of temperature on mutualisms and mutualistic species. PMID:25012597

  13. Thermal tolerance affects mutualist attendance in an ant-plant protection mutualism.

    PubMed

    Fitzpatrick, Ginny; Lanan, Michele C; Bronstein, Judith L

    2014-09-01

    Mutualism is an often complex interaction among multiple species, each of which may respond differently to abiotic conditions. The effects of temperature on the formation, dissolution, and success of these and other species interactions remain poorly understood. We studied the thermal ecology of the mutualism between the cactus Ferocactus wislizeni and its ant defenders (Forelius pruinosus, Crematogaster opuntiae, Solenopsis aurea, and Solenopsis xyloni) in the Sonoran Desert, USA. The ants are attracted to extrafloral nectar produced by the plants and, in exchange, protect the plants from herbivores; there is a hierarchy of mutualist effectiveness based on aggression toward herbivores. We determined the relationship between temperature and ant activity on plants, the thermal tolerance of each ant species, and ant activity in relation to the thermal environment of plants. Temperature played a role in determining which species interact as mutualists. Three of the four ant species abandoned the plants during the hottest part of the day (up to 40 °C), returning when surface temperature began to decrease in the afternoon. The least effective ant mutualist, F. pruinosus, had a significantly higher critical thermal maximum than the other three species, was active across the entire range of plant surface temperatures observed (13.8-57.0 °C), and visited plants that reached the highest temperatures. F. pruinosus occupied some plants full-time and invaded plants occupied by more dominant species when those species were thermally excluded. Combining data on thermal tolerance and mutualist effectiveness provides a potentially powerful tool for predicting the effects of temperature on mutualisms and mutualistic species. PMID:25012597

  14. Plant Quantity Affects Development and Survival of a Gregarious Insect Herbivore and Its Endoparasitoid Wasp.

    PubMed

    Fei, Minghui; Gols, Rieta; Zhu, Feng; Harvey, Jeffrey A

    2016-01-01

    Virtually all studies of plant-herbivore-natural enemy interactions focus on plant quality as the major constraint on development and survival. However, for many gregarious feeding insect herbivores that feed on small or ephemeral plants, the quantity of resources is much more limiting, yet this area has received virtually no attention. Here, in both lab and semi-field experiments using tents containing variably sized clusters of food plants, we studied the effects of periodic food deprivation in a tri-trophic system where quantitative constraints are profoundly important on insect performance. The large cabbage white Pieris brassicae, is a specialist herbivore of relatively small wild brassicaceous plants that grow in variable densities, with black mustard (Brassica nigra) being one of the most important. Larvae of P. brassicae are in turn attacked by a specialist endoparasitoid wasp, Cotesia glomerata. Increasing the length of food deprivation of newly molted final instar caterpillars significantly decreased herbivore and parasitoid survival and biomass, but shortened their development time. Moreover, the ability of caterpillars to recover when provided with food again was correlated with the length of the food deprivation period. In outdoor tents with natural vegetation, we created conditions similar to those faced by P. brassicae in nature by manipulating plant density. Low densities of B. nigra lead to potential starvation of P. brassicae broods and their parasitoids, replicating nutritional conditions of the lab experiments. The ability of both unparasitized and parasitized caterpillars to find corner plants was similar but decreased with central plant density. Survival of both the herbivore and parasitoid increased with plant density and was higher for unparasitized than for parasitized caterpillars. Our results, in comparison with previous studies, reveal that quantitative constraints are far more important that qualitative constraints on the performance of

  15. Habitat Heterogeneity Affects Plant and Arthropod Species Diversity and Turnover in Traditional Cornfields.

    PubMed

    Martínez, Eliana; Rös, Matthias; Bonilla, María Argenis; Dirzo, Rodolfo

    2015-01-01

    The expansion of the agricultural frontier by the clearing of remnant forests has led to human-dominated landscape mosaics. Previous studies have evaluated the effect of these landscape mosaics on arthropod diversity at local spatial scales in temperate and tropical regions, but little is known about fragmentation effects in crop systems, such as the complex tropical traditional crop systems that maintain a high diversity of weeds and arthropods in low-Andean regions. To understand the factors that influence patterns of diversity in human-dominated landscapes, we investigate the effect of land use types on plant and arthropod diversity in traditionally managed cornfields, via surveys of plants and arthropods in twelve traditional cornfields in the Colombian Andes. We estimated alpha and beta diversity to analyze changes in diversity related to land uses within a radius of 100 m to 1 km around each cornfield. We observed that forests influenced alpha diversity of plants, but not of arthropods. Agricultural lands had a positive relationship with plants and herbivores, but a negative relationship with predators. Pastures positively influenced the diversity of plants and arthropods. In addition, forest cover seemed to influence changes in plant species composition and species turnover of herbivore communities among cornfields. The dominant plant species varied among fields, resulting in high differentiation of plant communities. Predator communities also exhibited high turnover among cornfields, but differences in composition arose mainly among rare species. The crop system evaluated in this study represents a widespread situation in the tropics, therefore, our results can be of broad significance. Our findings suggest that traditional agriculture may not homogenize biological communities, but instead could maintain the regional pool of species through high beta diversity. PMID:26197473

  16. Response of barley plants to Fe deficiency and Cd contamination as affected by S starvation.

    PubMed

    Astolfi, S; Zuchi, S; Neumann, G; Cesco, S; Sanità di Toppi, L; Pinton, R

    2012-02-01

    Both Fe deficiency and Cd exposure induce rapid changes in the S nutritional requirement of plants. The aim of this work was to characterize the strategies adopted by plants to cope with both Fe deficiency (release of phytosiderophores) and Cd contamination [production of glutathione (GSH) and phytochelatins] when grown under conditions of limited S supply. Experiments were performed in hydroponics, using barley plants grown under S sufficiency (1.2 mM sulphate) and S deficiency (0 mM sulphate), with or without Fe(III)-EDTA at 0.08 mM for 11 d and subsequently exposed to 0.05 mM Cd for 24 h or 72 h. In S-sufficient plants, Fe deficiency enhanced both root and shoot Cd concentrations and increased GSH and phytochelatin levels. In S-deficient plants, Fe starvation caused a slight increase in Cd concentration, but this change was accompanied neither by an increase in GSH nor by an accumulation of phytochelatins. Release of phytosiderophores, only detectable in Fe-deficient plants, was strongly decreased by S deficiency and further reduced after Cd treatment. In roots Cd exposure increased the expression of the high affinity sulphate transporter gene (HvST1) regardless of the S supply, and the expression of the Fe deficiency-responsive genes, HvYS1 and HvIDS2, irrespective of Fe supply. In conclusion, adequate S availability is necessary to cope with Fe deficiency and Cd toxicity in barley plants. Moreover, it appears that in Fe-deficient plants grown in the presence of Cd with limited S supply, sulphur may be preferentially employed in the pathway for biosynthesis of phytosiderophores, rather than for phytochelatin production. PMID:22090437

  17. Habitat Heterogeneity Affects Plant and Arthropod Species Diversity and Turnover in Traditional Cornfields

    PubMed Central

    Martínez, Eliana; Rös, Matthias; Bonilla, María Argenis; Dirzo, Rodolfo

    2015-01-01

    The expansion of the agricultural frontier by the clearing of remnant forests has led to human-dominated landscape mosaics. Previous studies have evaluated the effect of these landscape mosaics on arthropod diversity at local spatial scales in temperate and tropical regions, but little is known about fragmentation effects in crop systems, such as the complex tropical traditional crop systems that maintain a high diversity of weeds and arthropods in low-Andean regions. To understand the factors that influence patterns of diversity in human-dominated landscapes, we investigate the effect of land use types on plant and arthropod diversity in traditionally managed cornfields, via surveys of plants and arthropods in twelve traditional cornfields in the Colombian Andes. We estimated alpha and beta diversity to analyze changes in diversity related to land uses within a radius of 100 m to 1 km around each cornfield. We observed that forests influenced alpha diversity of plants, but not of arthropods. Agricultural lands had a positive relationship with plants and herbivores, but a negative relationship with predators. Pastures positively influenced the diversity of plants and arthropods. In addition, forest cover seemed to influence changes in plant species composition and species turnover of herbivore communities among cornfields. The dominant plant species varied among fields, resulting in high differentiation of plant communities. Predator communities also exhibited high turnover among cornfields, but differences in composition arose mainly among rare species. The crop system evaluated in this study represents a widespread situation in the tropics, therefore, our results can be of broad significance. Our findings suggest that traditional agriculture may not homogenize biological communities, but instead could maintain the regional pool of species through high beta diversity. PMID:26197473

  18. Regulation of Expansin Gene Expression Affects Growth and Development in Transgenic Rice Plants

    PubMed Central

    Choi, Dongsu; Lee, Yi; Cho, Hyung-Taeg; Kende, Hans

    2003-01-01

    To investigate the in vivo functions of expansins, we generated transgenic rice plants that express sense and antisense constructs of the expansin gene OsEXP4. In adult plants with constitutive OsEXP4 expression, 12% of overexpressors were taller and 88% were shorter than the average control plants, and most overexpressors developed at least two additional leaves. Antisense plants were shorter and flowered earlier than the average control plants. In transgenic plants with inducible OsEXP4 expression, we observed a close correlation between OsEXP4 protein levels and seedling growth. Coleoptile and mesocotyl length increased by up to 31 and 97%, respectively, in overexpressors, whereas in antisense seedlings, they decreased by up to 28 and 43%, respectively. The change in seedling growth resulted from corresponding changes in cell size, which in turn appeared to be a function of altered cell wall extensibility. Our results support the hypothesis that expansins are involved in enhancing growth by mediating cell wall loosening. PMID:12782731

  19. The bacterial pathogen Xylella fastidiosa affects the leaf ionome of plant hosts during infection.

    PubMed

    De La Fuente, Leonardo; Parker, Jennifer K; Oliver, Jonathan E; Granger, Shea; Brannen, Phillip M; van Santen, Edzard; Cobine, Paul A

    2013-01-01

    Xylella fastidiosa is a plant pathogenic bacterium that lives inside the host xylem vessels, where it forms biofilm believed to be responsible for disrupting the passage of water and nutrients. Here, Nicotiana tabacum was infected with X. fastidiosa, and the spatial and temporal changes in the whole-leaf ionome (i.e. the mineral and trace element composition) were measured as the host plant transitioned from healthy to diseased physiological status. The elemental composition of leaves was used as an indicator of the physiological changes in the host at a specific time and relative position during plant development. Bacterial infection was found to cause significant increases in concentrations of calcium prior to the appearance of symptoms and decreases in concentrations of phosphorous after symptoms appeared. Field-collected leaves from multiple varieties of grape, blueberry, and pecan plants grown in different locations over a four-year period in the Southeastern US showed the same alterations in Ca and P. This descriptive ionomics approach characterizes the existence of a mineral element-based response to X. fastidiosa using a model system suitable for further manipulation to uncover additional details of the role of mineral elements during plant-pathogen interactions. This is the first report on the dynamics of changes in the ionome of the host plant throughout the process of infection by a pathogen. PMID:23667547

  20. Drying and Storage Methods Affect Cyfluthrin Concentrations in Exposed Plant Samples.

    PubMed

    Moore, M T; Kröger, R; Locke, M A

    2016-08-01

    Standard procedures do not exist for drying and storage of plant samples prior to chemical analyses. Since immediate analysis is not always possible, current research examined which plant drying and storage method yielded the highest cyfluthrin recovery rates compared to traditional mechanical freeze-drying methods. Fifteen mesocosms were planted with rice. Cyfluthrin (5 mg L(-1)) was amended into the water column of individual mesocosms. 48 h later, plant material in the water column was collected from each mesocosm. Control (mechanical freeze drying) recovery was significantly greater (p < 0.001) than all 14 combinations of drying and storage. Significant differences also existed between all 14 different combinations. Greatest cyfluthrin recoveries in non-control plants were from the freezer-greenhouse-freezer drying and storage method. Results offer evidence for the efficient plant drying and storage methods prior to cyfluthrin analysis. Future studies should perform comparable analyses on various pesticide classes to determine possible relationships. PMID:27225509

  1. Population-related variation in plant defense more strongly affects survival of an herbivore than its solitary parasitoid wasp.

    PubMed

    Harvey, Jeffrey A; Gols, Rieta

    2011-10-01

    The performance of natural enemies, such as parasitoid wasps, is affected by differences in the quality of the host's diet, frequently mediated by species or population-related differences in plant allelochemistry. Here, we compared survival, development time, and body mass in a generalist herbivore, the cabbage moth, Mamestra brassicae, and its solitary endoparasitoid, Microplitis mediator, when reared on two cultivated (CYR and STH) and three wild (KIM, OH, and WIN) populations of cabbage, Brassica oleracea. Plants either were undamaged or induced by feeding of larvae of the cabbage butterfly, Pieris rapae. Development and biomass of M. brassicae and Mi. mediator were similar on both cultivated and one wild cabbage population (KIM), intermediate on the OH population, and significantly lower on the WIN population. Moreover, development was prolonged and biomass was reduced on herbivore-induced plants. However, only the survival of parasitized hosts (and not that of healthy larvae) was affected by induction. Analysis of glucosinolates in leaves of the cabbages revealed higher levels in the wild populations than cultivars, with the highest concentrations in WIN plants. Multivariate statistics revealed a negative correlation between insect performance and total levels of glucosinolates (GS) and levels of 3-butenyl GS. However, GS chemistry could not explain the reduced performance on induced plants since only indole GS concentrations increased in response to herbivory, which did not affect insect performance based on multivariate statistics. This result suggests that, in addition to aliphatic GS, other non-GS chemicals are responsible for the decline in insect performance, and that these chemicals affect the parasitoid more strongly than the host. Remarkably, when developing on WIN plants, the survival of Mi. mediator to adult eclosion was much higher than in its host, M. brassicae. This may be due to the fact that hosts parasitized by Mi. mediator pass through fewer

  2. Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal phylogenetic groups differ in affecting host plants along heavy metal levels.

    PubMed

    He, Lei; Yang, Haishui; Yu, Zhenxing; Tang, Jianjun; Xu, Ligen; Chen, Xin

    2014-10-01

    Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) are important components of soil microbial communities, and play important role in plant growth. However, the effects of AMF phylogenetic groups (Glomeraceae and non-Glomeraceae) on host plant under various heavy metal levels are not clear. Here we conducted a meta-analysis to compare symbiotic relationship between AMF phylogenetic groups (Glomeraceae and non-Glomeraceae) and host plant functional groups (herbs vs. trees, and non-legumes vs. legumes) at three heavy metal levels. In the meta-analysis, we calculate the effect size (ln(RR)) by taking the natural logarithm of the response ratio of inoculated to non-inoculated shoot biomass from each study. We found that the effect size of Glomeraceae increased, but the effect size of non-Glomeraceae decreased under high level of heavy metal compared to low level. According to the effect size, both Glomeraceae and non-Glomeraceae promoted host plant growth, but had different effects under various heavy metal levels. Glomeraceae provided more benefit to host plants than non-Glomeraceae did under heavy metal condition, while non-Glomeraceae provided more benefit to host plants than Glomeraceae did under no heavy metal. AMF phylogenetic groups also differed in promoting plant functional groups under various heavy metal levels. Interacting with Glomeraceae, herbs and legumes grew better than trees and non-legumes did under high heavy metal level, while trees and legumes grew better than herbs and non-legumes did under medium heavy metal level. Interacting with non-Glomeraceae, herbs and legumes grew better than trees and non-legumes did under no heavy metal. We suggested that the combination of legume with Glomeraceae could be a useful way in the remediation of heavy metal polluted environment. PMID:25288547

  3. Roads in northern hardwood forests affect adjacent plant communities and soil chemistry in proportion to the maintained roadside area.

    PubMed

    Neher, Deborah A; Asmussen, David; Lovell, Sarah Taylor

    2013-04-01

    The spatial extent of the transported materials from three road types was studied in forest soil and vegetative communities in Vermont. Hypotheses were two-fold: 1) soil chemical concentrations above background environment would reflect traffic volume and road type (highway>2-lane paved>gravel), and 2) plant communities close to the road and near roads with greater traffic will be disturbance-tolerant and adept at colonization. Soil samples were gathered from 12 randomly identified transects for each of three road types classified as "highway," "two-lane paved," and "gravel." Using GIS mapping, transects were constructed perpendicular to the road, and samples were gathered at the shoulder, ditch, backslope, 10 m from the edge of the forest, and 50 m from road center. Sample locations were analyzed for a suite of soil elements and parameters, as well as percent area coverage by plant species. The main effects from roads depended on the construction modifications required for a roadway (i.e., vegetation clearing and topography modification). The cleared area defined the type of plant community and the distance that road pollutants travel. Secondarily, road presence affected soil chemistry. Metal concentrations (e.g., Pb, Cd, Cu, and Zn) correlated positively with road type. Proximity to all road types made the soils more alkaline (pH 7.7) relative to the acidic soil of the adjacent native forest (pH 5.6). Roadside microtopography had marked effects on the composition of plant communities based on the direction of water flow. Ditch areas supported wetland plant species, greater soil moisture and sulfur content, while plant communities closer to the road were characteristic of drier upland zones. The area beyond the edge of the forest did not appear to be affected chemically or physically by any of the road types, possibly due to the dense vegetation that typically develops outside of the managed right-of-way. PMID:23435063

  4. Changes in the salinity tolerance of sweet pepper plants as affected by nitrogen form and high CO2 concentration.

    PubMed

    Piñero, María C; Pérez-Jiménez, Margarita; López-Marín, Josefa; Del Amor, Francisco M

    2016-08-01

    The assimilation and availability of nitrogen in its different forms can significantly affect the response of primary productivity under the current atmospheric alteration and soil degradation. An elevated CO2 concentration (e[CO2]) triggers changes in the efficiency and efficacy of photosynthetic processes, water use and product yield, the plant response to stress being altered with respect to ambient CO2 conditions (a[CO2]). Additionally, NH4(+) has been related to improved plant responses to stress, considering both energy efficiency in N-assimilation and the overcoming of the inhibition of photorespiration at e[CO2]. Therefore, the aim of this work was to determine the response of sweet pepper plants (Capsicum annuum L.) receiving an additional supply of NH4(+) (90/10 NO3(-)/NH4(+)) to salinity stress (60mM NaCl) under a[CO2] (400μmolmol(-1)) or e[CO2] (800μmolmol(-1)). Salt-stressed plants grown at e[CO2] showed DW accumulation similar to that of the non-stressed plants at a[CO2]. The supply of NH4(+) reduced growth at e[CO2] when salinity was imposed. Moreover, NH4(+) differentially affected the stomatal conductance and water use efficiency and the leaf Cl(-), K(+), and Na(+) concentrations, but the extent of the effects was influenced by the [CO2]. An antioxidant-related response was prompted by salinity, the total phenolics and proline concentrations being reduced by NH4(+) at e[CO2]. Our results show that the effect of NH4(+) on plant salinity tolerance should be globally re-evaluated as e[CO2] can significantly alter the response, when compared with previous studies at a[CO2]. PMID:27317970

  5. Microbial composition in a deep saline aquifer in the North German Basin -microbiologically induced corrosion and mineral precipitation affecting geothermal plant operation and the effects of plant downtime

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lerm, Stephanie; Westphal, Anke; Miethling-Graff, Rona; Alawi, Mashal; Seibt, Andrea; Wolfgramm, Markus; Würdemann, Hilke

    2013-04-01

    The microbial composition in fluids of a deep saline geothermal used aquifer in the North German Basin was characterized over a period of five years. The genetic fingerprinting techniques PCR-SSCP and PCR-DGGE revealed distinct microbial communities in fluids produced from the cold and warm side of the aquifer. Direct cell counting and quantification of 16S rRNA genes and dissimilatory sulfite reductase (dsrA) genes by real-time PCR proved different population sizes in fluids, showing higher abundance of Bacteria and sulfate reducing bacteria (SRB) in cold fluids compared to warm fluids. Predominating SRB in the cold well probably accounted for corrosion damage to the submersible well pump, and iron sulfide precipitates in the near wellbore area and topside facility filters. This corresponded to a lower sulfate content in fluids produced from the cold well as well as higher content of hydrogen gas that was probably released from corrosion, and maybe favoured growth of hydrogenotrophic SRB. Plant downtime significantly influenced the microbial biocenosis in fluids. Samples taken after plant restart gave indications about the processes occurring downhole during those phases. High DNA concentrations in fluids at the beginning of the restart process with a decreasing trend over time indicated a higher abundance of microbes during plant downtime compared to regular plant operation. It is likely that a gradual drop in temperature as well as stagnant conditions favoured the growth of microbes and maturation of biofilms at the casing and in pores of the reservoir rock in the near wellbore area. Furthermore, it became obvious that the microorganisms were more associated to particles then free-living. This study reflects the high influence of microbial populations for geothermal plant operation, because microbiologically induced precipitative and corrosive processes adversely affect plant reliability. Those processes may favourably occur during plant downtime due to enhanced

  6. How do soil texture, plant community composition and earthworms affected the infiltration rate in a grassland plant diversity experiment depending on season?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fischer, Christine; Britta, Merkel; Nico, Eisenhauer; Christiane, Roscher; Sabine, Attinger; Stefan, Scheu; Anke, Hildebrandt

    2013-04-01

    Background and aims: In this study we analyzed the influences of plant community characteristics, soil texture and earthworm presence on infiltration rates on a managed grassland plant diversity experiment assessing the role of biotic and abiotic factors on soil hydrology. Methods: We measured infiltration using a hood infiltrometer in subplots with ambient and reduced earthworm density (earthworm extraction) nested in plots of different plant species richness (1, 4, and 16), plant functional group number and composition (1 to 4; legumes, grasses, small herbs, tall herbs) in early summer (June) and autumn (September, October) 2011. Results: The presence of certain plant functional groups such as grasses and legumes influenced infiltration rates and this effect enhanced during the growing season. Infiltration was significantly higher in plots containing legumes than in plots without, and it was significantly lower in the presence of grasses than in their absence. In early summer, earthworm presence and biomass increased the infiltration rates, independently of plant species richness. In October, plant species richness only affected infiltration rates in reduced earthworm plots. At the end of the growing season earthworm populations were negatively influenced by grasses and positively by legumes. In September, infiltration rates were positive related to the proportion of finer grains. The correlation disappears when removing all plots containing legumes from the sample. For all measurements the infiltration rates decreases from early summer to autumn at the matric potentials at pressure zero and -0.02 m, but not for smaller macropores at matric potentials -0.04 and -0.06m. Conclusions: Considering infiltration rates as ecosystem function, this function will largely depend on the ecosystem composition and season, not on biodiversity per se. Our results indicate that biotic factors are of overriding influence for shaping infiltration rates mainly for larger macropores

  7. Different Factors Affecting Short Circuit Behavior of a Wind Power Plant

    SciTech Connect

    Muljadi, E.; Samaan, Nader A.; Gevorgian, Vahan; Li, Jun; Pasupulati, Subbaiah

    2013-01-31

    A wind power plant consists of a large number of turbines interconnected by underground cable. A pad-mount transformer at each turbine steps up the voltage from generating voltage (690 V) to a medium voltage (34.5 kV). All turbines in the plant are connected to the substation transformer where the voltage is stepped up to the transmission level. An important aspect of wind power plant (WPP) impact studies is to evaluate the short-circuit (SC) current contribution of the plant into the transmission network under different fault conditions. This task can be challenging to protection engineers due to the topology differences between different types of wind turbine generators (WTGs) and the conventional generating units. This paper investigates the short circuit behavior of a wind power plant for different types of faults. The impact of wind turbine types, the transformer configuration, and the reactive compensation capacitor will be investigated. The voltage response at different buses will be observed. Finally, the SC line currents will be presented along with its symmetrical components.

  8. Different Factors Affecting Short Circuit Behavior of a Wind Power Plant

    SciTech Connect

    Muljadi, E.; Samaan, Nader A.; Gevorgian, Vahan; Li, Jun; Pasupulati, Subbaiah

    2010-12-21

    A wind power plant consists of a large number of turbines interconnected by underground cable. A pad-mount transformer at each turbine steps up the voltage from generating voltage (690 V) to a medium voltage (34.5 kV). All turbines in the plant are connected to the substation transformer where the voltage is stepped up to the transmission level. An important aspect of wind power plant (WPP) impact studies is to evaluate the short-circuit (SC) current contribution of the plant into the transmission network under different fault conditions. This task can be challenging to protection engineers due to the topology differences between different types of wind turbine generators (WTGs) and the conventional generating units. This paper investigates the short circuit behavior of a wind power plant for different types of faults. The impact of wind turbine types, the transformer configuration, and the reactive compensation capacitor will be investigated. The voltage response at different buses will be observed. Finally, the SC line currents will be presented along with its symmetrical components.

  9. Do postfire mulching treatments affect plant community recovery in California coastal sage scrub lands?

    PubMed

    McCullough, Sarah A; Endress, Bryan A

    2012-01-01

    In recent years, the use of postfire mulch treatments to stabilize slopes and reduce soil erosion in shrubland ecosystems has increased; however, the potential effects on plant recovery have not been examined. To evaluate the effects of mulching treatments on postfire plant recovery in southern California coastal sage scrub, we conducted a field experiment with three experimental treatments, consisting of two hydromulch products and an erosion control blanket, plus a control treatment. The area burned in 2007, and treatments were applied to six plot blocks before the 2008 growing season. Treatment effects on plant community recovery were analyzed with a mixed effects ANOVA analysis using a univariate repeated measures approach. Absolute plant cover increased from 13 to 90% by the end of the second growing season, and the mean relative cover of exotic species was 32%. The two hydromulch treatments had no effect on any plant community recovery response variable measured. For the erosion control blanket treatment, the amount of bare ground cover at the end of the second growing season was significantly lower (P = 0.01), and greater shrub height was observed (P < 0.01). We conclude that postfire mulch treatments did not provide either a major benefit or negative impact to coastal sage scrub recovery on the study area. PMID:22042409

  10. Uptake of Pharmaceuticals Influences Plant Development and Affects Nutrient and Hormone Homeostases.

    PubMed

    Carter, Laura J; Williams, Mike; Böttcher, Christine; Kookana, Rai S

    2015-10-20

    The detection of a range of active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) in the soil environment has led to a number of publications demonstrating uptake by crops, however very few studies have explored the potential for impacts on plant development as a result of API uptake. This study investigated the effect of carbamazepine and verapamil (0.005-10 mg/kg) on a range of plant responses in zucchini (Cucurbita pepo). Uptake increased in a dose-dependent manner, with maximum leaf concentrations of 821.9 and 2.2 mg/kg for carbamazepine and verapamil, respectively. Increased carbamazepine uptake by zucchini resulted in a decrease in above (<60%) and below (<30%) ground biomass compared to the controls (p < 0.05). At soil concentrations >4 mg/kg the mature leaves suffered from burnt edges and white spots as well as a reduction in photosynthetic pigments but no such effects were seen for verapamil. For both APIs, further investigations revealed significant differences in the concentrations of selected plant hormones (auxins, cytokinins, abscisic acid and jasmonates), and in the nutrient composition of the leaves in comparison to the controls (p < 0.05). This is some of the first research to demonstrate that the exposure of plants to APIs is likely to cause impacts on plant development with unknown implications. PMID:26418514

  11. Morphological Characteristics of Maize Canopy Development as Affected by Increased Plant Density

    PubMed Central

    Song, Youhong; Rui, Yukui; Bedane, Guta; Li, Jincai

    2016-01-01

    Improving crop productivity through higher plant density requires a detailed understanding of organ development in response to increased interplant competition. The objective of this paper is thus to investigate the characteristics of organ development under increased interplant competition. A field experiment was conducted to investigate organ development across 4 maize plant densities i.e. 2, 6, 12 and 20 plants m–2 (referred to PD2, PD6, PD12 and PD20 respectively). In response to increased interplant competition, lengths of both laminae and sheaths increased in lower phytomers, but decreased in upper phytomers. Sheath extension appeared to be less sensitive to increased interplant competition than lamina extension. Extension of laminae and internodes responded to increased plant density as soon as onset of mild interplant competition, but did not respond any further to severe competition. Both lamina width and internode diameter were reduced due to a smaller growth rate in response to increased plant density. Overall, this study identified that organ expansion rate can be taken as the key morphological factor to determine the degree of interplant competition. PMID:27129101

  12. How do increasing background concentrations of tropospheric ozone affect peatland plant growth and carbon gas exchange?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Williamson, Jennifer L.; Mills, Gina; Hayes, Felicity; Jones, Timothy; Freeman, Chris

    2016-02-01

    In this study we have demonstrated that plants originating from upland peat bogs are sensitive to increasing background concentrations of ozone. Peatland mesocosms from an upland peat bog in North Wales, UK were exposed to eight levels of elevated background ozone in solardomes for 4 months from May to August, with 24 h mean ozone concentrations ranging from 16 to 94 ppb and cumulative AOT024hr ranging from 45.98 ppm h to 259.63 ppm h. Our results show that plant senescence increased with increasing exposure to ozone, although there was no significant effect of increasing ozone on plant biomass. Assessments of carbon dioxide and methane fluxes from the mesocosms suggests that there was no change in carbon dioxide fluxes over the 4 month exposure period but that methane fluxes increased as cumulative ozone exposure increased to a maximum AOT 024hr of approximately 120 ppm h and then decreased as cumulative ozone exposure increased further.

  13. Agave salmiana Plant Communities in Central Mexico as Affected by Commercial Use

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martínez Salvador, Martin; Mata-González, Ricardo; Morales Nieto, Carlos; Valdez-Cepeda, Ricardo

    2012-01-01

    Agave salmiana is a native plant species harvested for the commercial production of mezcal ( Agave spirits) in the highlands of central Mexico. The objective of this study was to identify vegetation changes in natural communities where A. salmiana has been differentially harvested for commercial purposes. Three plant community categories were identified in the state of Zacatecas based on their history of A. salmiana utilization: short (less than 10 years of use), moderate (about 25 years), and long (60 or more years). Species cover, composition, and density were evaluated in field surveys by use category. A gradient of vegetation structure of the communities parallels the duration of A. salmiana use. A. salmiana density was greatest (3,125 plants ha-1) in the short-use areas and less (892 plants ha-1) in the moderate-use areas, associated with markedly greater density of shrubs (200%) and Opuntia spp. (50%) in moderate-use areas. The main shrubs were Larrea tridentata, Mimosa biuncifera, Jatropha dioica and Buddleia scordioides while the main Opuntia species were Opuntia leucotricha and Opuntia robusta. A. salmiana density was least (652 plants ha-1) in the long-use areas where shrubs were less abundant but Opuntia spp. density was 25% higher than in moderate-use areas. We suggest that shrubs may increase with moderate use creating an intermediate successional stage that facilitates the establishment of Opuntia spp. Long-term Agave use is generating new plant communities dominated by Opuntia spp. (nopaleras) as a replacement of the original communities dominated by A. salmiana (magueyeras).

  14. Plant species diversity affects soil-atmosphere fluxes of methane and nitrous oxide.

    PubMed

    Niklaus, Pascal A; Le Roux, Xavier; Poly, Franck; Buchmann, Nina; Scherer-Lorenzen, Michael; Weigelt, Alexandra; Barnard, Romain L

    2016-07-01

    Plant diversity effects on ecosystem functioning can potentially interact with global climate by altering fluxes of the radiatively active trace gases nitrous oxide (N2O) and methane (CH4). We studied the effects of grassland species richness (1-16) in combination with application of fertilizer (nitrogen:phosphorus:potassium = 100:43.6:83 kg ha(-1) a(-1)) on N2O and CH4 fluxes in a long-term field experiment. Soil N2O emissions, measured over 2 years using static chambers, decreased with species richness unless fertilizer was added. N2O emissions increased with fertilization and the fraction of legumes in plant communities. Soil CH4 uptake, a process driven by methanotrophic bacteria, decreased with plant species numbers, irrespective of fertilization. Using structural equation models, we related trace gas fluxes to soil moisture, soil inorganic N concentrations, nitrifying and denitrifying enzyme activity, and the abundance of ammonia oxidizers, nitrite oxidizers, and denitrifiers (quantified by real-time PCR of gene fragments amplified from microbial DNA in soil). These analyses indicated that plant species richness increased soil moisture, which in turn increased N cycling-related activities. Enhanced N cycling increased N2O emission and soil CH4 uptake, with the latter possibly caused by removal of inhibitory ammonium by nitrification. The moisture-related indirect effects were surpassed by direct, moisture-independent effects opposite in direction. Microbial gene abundances responded positively to fertilizer but not to plant species richness. The response patterns we found were statistically robust and highlight the potential of plant biodiversity to interact with climatic change through mechanisms unrelated to carbon storage and associated carbon dioxide removal. PMID:27038993

  15. Light accelerates plant responses to warming.

    PubMed

    De Frenne, Pieter; Rodríguez-Sánchez, Francisco; De Schrijver, An; Coomes, David A; Hermy, Martin; Vangansbeke, Pieter; Verheyen, Kris

    2015-01-01

    Competition for light has profound effects on plant performance in virtually all terrestrial ecosystems. Nowhere is this more evident than in forests, where trees create environmental heterogeneity that shapes the dynamics of forest-floor communities(1-3). Observational evidence suggests that biotic responses to both anthropogenic global warming and nitrogen pollution may be attenuated by the shading effects of trees and shrubs(4-9). Here we show experimentally that tree shade is slowing down changes in below-canopy communities due to warming. We manipulated levels of photosynthetically active radiation, temperature and nitrogen, alone and in combination, in a temperate forest understorey over a 3-year period, and monitored the composition of the understorey community. Light addition, but not nitrogen enrichment, accelerated directional plant community responses to warming, increasing the dominance of warmth-preferring taxa over cold-tolerant plants (a process described as thermophilization(6,10-12)). Tall, competitive plants took greatest advantage of the combination of elevated temperature and light. Warming of the forest floor did not result in strong community thermophilization unless light was also increased. Our findings suggest that the maintenance of locally closed canopy conditions could reduce, at least temporarily, warming-induced changes in forest floor plant communities. PMID:27250675

  16. Study of Plant Cell Wall Polymers Affected by Metal Accumulation Using Stimulated Raman Scattering Microscopy

    SciTech Connect

    Ding, Shi-You

    2015-03-02

    This project aims to employ newly-developed chemical imaging techniques to measure, in real-time, the concentration, dynamics and spatial distribution of plant cell wall polymers during biomass growth with inoculation of transgenic symbiotic fungi, and to explore a new pathway of delivering detoxified metal to plant apoplast using transgenic symbiotic fungi, which will enhance metal accumulation from soil, and potentially these metals may in turn be used as catalysts to improve the efficiency of biomass conversion to biofuels. The proposed new pathway of biomass production will: 1) benefit metal and radionuclide contaminant mobility in subsurface environments, and 2) potentially improve biomass production and process for bioenergy

  17. Overexpression of the CC-type glutaredoxin, OsGRX6 affects hormone and nitrogen status in rice plants

    PubMed Central

    El-Kereamy, Ashraf; Bi, Yong-Mei; Mahmood, Kashif; Ranathunge, Kosala; Yaish, Mahmoud W.; Nambara, Eiji; Rothstein, Steven J.

    2015-01-01

    Glutaredoxins (GRXs) are small glutathione dependent oxidoreductases that belong to the Thioredoxin (TRX) superfamily and catalyze the reduction of disulfide bonds of their substrate proteins. Plant GRXs include three different groups based on the motif sequence, namely CPYC, CGFS, and CC-type proteins. The rice CC-type proteins, OsGRX6 was identified during the screening for genes whose expression changes depending on the level of available nitrate. Overexpression of OsGRX6 in rice displayed a semi-dwarf phenotype. The OsGRX6 overexpressors contain a higher nitrogen content than the wild type, indicating that OsGRX6 plays a role in homeostatic regulation of nitrogen use. Consistent with this, OsGRX6 overexpressors displayed delayed chlorophyll degradation and senescence compared to the wild type plants. To examine if the growth defect of these transgenic lines attribute to disturbed plant hormone actions, plant hormone levels were measured. The levels of two cytokinins (CKs), 2-isopentenyladenine and trans-zeatin, and gibberellin A1 (GA1) were increased in these lines. We also found that these transgenic lines were less sensitive to exogenously applied GA, suggesting that the increase in GA1 is a result of the feedback regulation. These data suggest that OsGRX6 affects hormone signaling and nitrogen status in rice plants. PMID:26579177

  18. CO2, Temperature, and Soil Moisture Interactions Affect NDVI and Reproductive Phenology in Old-Field Plant Communities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Engel, C.; Weltzin, J.; Norby, R.

    2004-12-01

    Plant community composition and ecosystem function may be altered by global atmospheric and climate change, including increased atmospheric [CO2], temperature, and varying precipitation regimes. We are conducting an experiment at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) utilizing open-top chambers to administer experimental treatments of elevated CO2 (+300 ppm), warming (+ 3 degrees Celsius), and varying soil moisture availability to experimental plant communities constructed of seven common old-field species, including C3 and C4 grasses, forbs, and legumes. During 2004 we monitored plant community phenology (NDVI) and plant reproductive phenology. Early in the year, NDVI was greater in wet treatment plots, and was unaffected by main effects of temperature or CO2. This result suggests that early in the season warming is insufficient to affect early canopy development. Differences in soil moisture sustained throughout the winter and into early spring may constitute an important control on early canopy greenup. Elevated CO2 alleviated detrimental effects of warming on NDVI, but only early in the season. As ambient temperatures increased, elevated temperatures negatively impacted NDVI only in the dry plots. Wetter conditions ameliorate the effects of warming on canopy greenness during the warmer seasons of the year. Warming increased rates of bolting, number of inflorescences, and time to reproductive maturity for Andropogon virginicus (a C4 bunchgrass). Solidago Canadensis (a C3 late-season forb) also produced flowers earlier in elevated temperatures. Conversely, none of the C3 grasses and forbs that bolt or flower in late spring or early summer responded to temperature or CO2. Results indicate that warming and drought may impact plant community phenology, and plant species reproductive phenology. Clearly community phenology is driven by complex interactions among temperature, water, and CO2 that change throughout the season. Our data stresses the importance of

  19. Plant invasions differentially affected by diversity and dominant species in native- and exotic-dominated grasslands.

    PubMed

    Xu, Xia; Polley, H Wayne; Hofmockel, Kirsten; Daneshgar, Pedram P; Wilsey, Brian J

    2015-12-01

    Plant invasions are an increasingly serious global concern, especially as the climate changes. Here, we explored how plant invasions differed between native- and novel exotic-dominated grasslands with experimental addition of summer precipitation in Texas in 2009. Exotic species greened up earlier than natives by an average of 18 days. This was associated with a lower invasion rate early in the growing season compared to native communities. However, invasion rate did not differ significantly between native and exotic communities across all sampling times. The predictors of invasion rate differed between native and exotic communities, with invasion being negatively influenced by species richness in natives and by dominant species in exotics. Interestingly, plant invasions matched the bimodal pattern of precipitation in Temple, Texas, and did not respond to the pulse of precipitation during the summer. Our results suggest that we will need to take different approaches in understanding of invasion between native and exotic grasslands. Moreover, with anticipated increasing variability in precipitation under global climate change, plant invasions may be constrained in their response if the precipitation pulses fall outside the normal growing period of invaders. PMID:27069615

  20. Molecular analyses of nuclear-cytoplasmic interactions affecting plant growth and yield. Final technical report

    SciTech Connect

    Newton, K.J.

    1998-11-01

    Mitochondria have a central role in the production of cellular energy. The biogenesis and functioning of mitochondria depends on the expression of both mitochondrial and nuclear genes. One approach to investigating the role of nuclear-mitochondrial cooperation in plant growth and development is to identify combinations of nuclear and mitochondrial genomes that result in altered but sublethal phenotypes. Plants that have certain maize nuclear genotypes in combination with cytoplasmic genomes from more distantly-related teosintes can exhibit incompatible phenotypes, such as reduced plant growth and yield and cytoplasmic male sterility, as well as altered mitochondrial gene expression. The characterization of these nuclear-cytoplasmic interactions was the focus of this grant. The authors were investigating the effects of two maize nuclear genes, RcmI and Mct, on mitochondrial function and gene expression. Plants with the teosinte cytoplasms and homozygous for the recessive rcm allele are small (miniature) and-slow-growing and the kernels are reduced in size. The authors mapped this locus to molecular markers on chromosome 7 and attempted to clone this locus by transposon tagging. The effects of the nuclear-cytoplasmic interaction on mitochondrial function and mitochondrial protein profiles were also studied.

  1. Mercury Concentrations in Plant Tissues as Affected by FGDG Application to Soil

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Flue Gas Desulfurization Gypsum (FGDG) is produced by reducing sulfur dioxide emissions from themo-electric coal-fired power plants. The most common practice of FGDG production may trap some of the Mercury (Hg) present in the coal that normally would escape as vapor in the stack gases. Concern for t...

  2. Plant sterol consumption frequency affects plasma lipid levels and cholesterol kinetics in humans

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Background/Objectives: To compare the efficacy of single versus multiple doses of plant sterols on circulating lipid level and cholesterol trafficking. Subjects/Methods: A randomized, placebo-controlled, three-phase (6 days/phase) crossover, supervised feeding trial was conducted in 19 subjects. Sub...

  3. Drying and storage methods affect cyfluthrin concentrations in exposed plant samples

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Standard procedures exist for collection and chemical analyses of pyrethroid insecticides in environmental matrices. However, less detail is given for drying and potential storage methods of plant samples prior to analyses. Due to equipment and financial limitations, immediate sample analysis is n...

  4. Plant Defense Inhibitors Affect the Structures of Midgut Cells in Drosophila melanogaster and Callosobruchus maculatus.

    PubMed

    Li-Byarlay, Hongmei; Pittendrigh, Barry R; Murdock, Larry L

    2016-01-01

    Plants produce proteins such as protease inhibitors and lectins as defenses against herbivorous insects and pathogens. However, no systematic studies have explored the structural responses in the midguts of insects when challenged with plant defensive proteins and lectins across different species. In this study, we fed two kinds of protease inhibitors and lectins to the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster and alpha-amylase inhibitors and lectins to the cowpea bruchid Callosobruchus maculatus. We assessed the changes in midgut cell structures by comparing them with such structures in insects receiving normal diets or subjected to food deprivation. Using light and transmission electron microscopy in both species, we observed structural changes in the midgut peritrophic matrix as well as shortened microvilli on the surfaces of midgut epithelial cells in D. melanogaster. Dietary inhibitors and lectins caused similar lesions in the epithelial cells but not much change in the peritrophic matrix in both species. We also noted structural damages in the Drosophila midgut after six hours of starvation and changes were still present after 12 hours. Our study provided the first evidence of key structural changes of midguts using a comparative approach between a dipteran and a coleopteran. Our particular observation and discussion on plant-insect interaction and dietary stress are relevant for future mode of action studies of plant defensive protein in insect physiology. PMID:27594789

  5. Artificial elevation of glutathione affects symptom development in ZYMV-infected Cucurbita pepo L. plants.

    PubMed

    Zechmann, B; Zellnig, G; Urbanek-Krajnc, A; Müller, M

    2007-01-01

    Styrian oil pumpkin seedlings (Cucurbita pepo L. subsp. pepo var. styriaca GREB: .) were treated for 48 h with 1 mM OTC (L-2-oxothiazolidine-4-carboxylic acid) in order to artificially increase cellular glutathione content. They were inoculated with zucchini yellow mosaic virus (ZYMV) 10 days later. The effects of OTC treatment and ZYMV infection on glutathione levels were examined at the subcellular level by immunogold labeling of glutathione using a transmission electron microscope (TEM). These effects were further tested at the whole-tissue level by high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). Such tests were carried out a) on roots, cotyledons and the first true leaves immediately after OTC treatment in order to analyze to which extent OTC increases glutathione levels in different cell compartments as well as in the whole organ; and b) in older and younger leaves and in roots three weeks after ZYMV inoculation in order to study how possible effects of OTC on symptom development would correlate with glutathione levels at the subcellular level and in the whole organ. Immunocytological and biochemical investigations revealed that, 48 h after OTC treatment, glutathione content had increased in all investigated organs, up to 144% in peroxisomes of cotyledons. Three weeks after ZYMV inoculation, glutathione labeling density had significantly increased within intact cells of infected leaves, up to 124% in the cytosol of younger leaves. Roots showed decreased amounts of glutathione in the TEM. Biochemical studies revealed that OTC treatment resulted in 41 and 51% higher glutathione content in older and younger ZYMV-infected leaves, respectively, in comparison to untreated and ZYMV-infected plants. Evaluation of symptom development at this point revealed that all untreated ZYMV-infected plants had symptoms, whereas only 42% of OTC-treated ZYMV-infected plants showed signs of symptoms. Quantification of ZYMV particles revealed that all organs of OTC-treated and ZYMV

  6. A cyst nematode effector binds to diverse plant proteins, increases nematode susceptibility and affects root morphology.

    PubMed

    Pogorelko, Gennady; Juvale, Parijat S; Rutter, William B; Hewezi, Tarek; Hussey, Richard; Davis, Eric L; Mitchum, Melissa G; Baum, Thomas J

    2016-08-01

    Cyst nematodes are plant-parasitic roundworms that are of significance in many cropping systems around the world. Cyst nematode infection is facilitated by effector proteins secreted from the nematode into the plant host. The cDNAs of the 25A01-like effector family are novel sequences that were isolated from the oesophageal gland cells of the soybean cyst nematode (Heterodera glycines). To aid functional characterization, we identified an orthologous member of this protein family (Hs25A01) from the closely related sugar beet cyst nematode H. schachtii, which infects Arabidopsis. Constitutive expression of the Hs25A01 CDS in Arabidopsis plants caused a small increase in root length, accompanied by up to a 22% increase in susceptibility to H. schachtii. A plant-expressed RNA interference (RNAi) construct targeting Hs25A01 transcripts in invading nematodes significantly reduced host susceptibility to H. schachtii. These data document that Hs25A01 has physiological functions in planta and a role in cyst nematode parasitism. In vivo and in vitro binding assays confirmed the specific interactions of Hs25A01 with an Arabidopsis F-box-containing protein, a chalcone synthase and the translation initiation factor eIF-2 β subunit (eIF-2bs), making these proteins probable candidates for involvement in the observed changes in plant growth and parasitism. A role of eIF-2bs in the mediation of Hs25A01 virulence function is further supported by the observation that two independent eIF-2bs Arabidopsis knock-out lines were significantly more susceptible to H. schachtii. PMID:26575318

  7. The town Crepis and the country Crepis: How does fragmentation affect a plant-pollinator interaction?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andrieu, Emilie; Dornier, Antoine; Rouifed, Soraya; Schatz, Bertrand; Cheptou, Pierre-Olivier

    2009-01-01

    In fragmented habitats, one cause of the decrease of plant diversity and abundance is the disruption of plant-animal interactions, and in particular plant-pollinator interactions. Since habitat fragmentation acts both on pollinator behaviour and plant reproduction, its consequences for the stability of such interactions are complex. An extreme case of habitat fragmentation occurs in urbanised areas where suitable habitat (in the present study small patches around ornamental trees) is embedded in a highly unsuitable environment (concrete matrix). Based on simple experiments, we ask whether pollinators can adapt their foraging behaviour in response to the amount of available resources (flowers) in the fragments and their isolation, as predicted by the optimal foraging theory. To do so we analysed the effect of fragmentation on the behaviour of pollinators visiting Crepis sancta (L.) Bornm. (Asteraceae), which forms large populations in the countryside and patchy populations in urban environments. More precisely we studied pollinator visitation rates, capitulum visit durations, capitulum search durations and capitulum size choice. Pollinators chose larger capitula in both types of populations and their foraging behaviour differed between the two population types in three ways: (1) pollinator visits were lower in urban fragmented populations, perhaps due to the lower accessibility of urban patches; (2) capitulum visit durations were longer in urban fragmented populations, a possible compensation of energy lost during flights among patches; and (3) capitulum search durations where longer in urban fragmented populations, which may represent an increase in capitulum prospecting effort. We discuss the possible impacts of such differences for plant population functioning in the two types of populations.

  8. Trichobaris weevils distinguish amongst toxic host plants by sensing volatiles that do not affect larval performance.

    PubMed

    Lee, Gisuk; Joo, Youngsung; Diezel, Celia; Lee, Eun Ju; Baldwin, Ian T; Kim, Sang-Gyu

    2016-07-01

    Herbivorous insects use plant metabolites to inform their host plant selection for oviposition. These host-selection behaviours are often consistent with the preference-performance hypothesis; females oviposit on hosts that maximize the performance of their offspring. However, the metabolites used for these oviposition choices and those responsible for differences in offspring performance remain unknown for ecologically relevant interactions. Here, we examined the host-selection behaviours of two sympatric weevils, the Datura (Trichobaris compacta) and tobacco (T. mucorea) weevils in field and glasshouse experiments with transgenic host plants specifically altered in different components of their secondary metabolism. Adult females of both species strongly preferred to feed on D. wrightii rather than on N. attenuata leaves, but T. mucorea preferred to oviposit on N. attenuata, while T. compacta oviposited only on D. wrightii. These oviposition behaviours increased offspring performance: T. compacta larvae only survived in D. wrightii stems and T. mucorea larvae survived better in N. attenuata than in D. wrightii stems. Choice assays with nicotine-free, JA-impaired, and sesquiterpene-over-produced isogenic N. attenuata plants revealed that although half of the T. compacta larvae survived in nicotine-free N. attenuata lines, nicotine did not influence the oviposition behaviours of both the nicotine-adapted and nicotine-sensitive species. JA-induced sesquiterpene volatiles are key compounds influencing T. mucorea females' oviposition choices, but these sesquiterpenes had no effect on larval performance. We conclude that adult females are able to choose the best host plant for their offspring and use chemicals different from those that influence larval performance to inform their oviposition decisions. PMID:27146082

  9. Atmospheric CO2 level affects plants' carbon use efficiency: insights from a 13C labeling experiment on sunflower stands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gong, Xiaoying; Schäufele, Rudi; Schnyder, Hans

    2015-04-01

    The increase of atmospheric CO2 concentration has been shown to stimulate plant photosynthesis and (to a lesser extent) growth, thereby acting as a possible sink for the additional atmospheric CO2. However, this effect is dependent on the efficiency with which plants convert atmospheric carbon into biomass carbon, since a considerable proportion of assimilated carbon is returned to the atmosphere via plant respiration. As a core parameter for carbon cycling, carbon use efficiency of plants (CUE, the ratio of net primary production to gross primary production) quantifies the proportion of assimilated carbon that is incorporated into plant biomass. CUE has rarely been assessed based on measurements of complete carbon balance, due to methodological difficulties in measuring respiration rate of plants in light. Moreover, foliar respiration is known to be inhibited in light, thus foliar respiration rate is generally lower in light than in dark. However, this phenomenon, termed as inhibition of respiration in light (IRL), has rarely been assessed at the stand-scale and been incorporated into the calculation of CUE. Therefore, how CUE responses to atmospheric CO2 levels is still not clear. We studied CUE of sunflower stands grown at sub-ambient CO2 level (200 μmol mol-1) and elevated CO2 level (1000 μmol mol-1) using mesocosm-scale gas exchange facilities which enabled continuous measurements of 13CO2/12CO2 exchange. Appling steady-state 13C labeling, fluxes of respiration and photosynthesis in light were separated, and tracer kinetic in respiration was analyzed. This study provides the first data on CUE at a mesocosm-level including respiration in light in different CO2 environments. We found that CUE of sunflower was lower at an elevated CO2 level than at a sub-ambient CO2 level; and the ignorance of IRL lead to erroneous estimations of CUE. Variation in CUE at atmospheric CO2 levels was attributed to several mechanisms. In this study, CO2 enrichment i) affected the

  10. Modelling Plant and Soil Nitrogen Feedbacks Affecting Forest Carbon Gain at High CO2

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McMurtrie, R. E.; Norby, R. J.; Franklin, O.; Pepper, D. A.

    2007-12-01

    Short-term, direct effects of elevated atmospheric CO2 concentrations on plant carbon gain are relatively well understood. There is considerable uncertainty, however, about longer-term effects, which are influenced by various plant and ecosystem feedbacks. A key feedback in terrestrial ecosystems occurs through changes in plant carbon (C) allocation patterns. For instance, if high CO2 were to increase C allocation to roots, then plants may experience positive feedback through improved plant nutrition. A second type of feedback, associated with decomposition of soil-organic matter, may reduce soil-nutrient availability at high CO2. This paper will consider mechanistic models of both feedbacks. Effects of high CO2 on plant C allocation will be investigated using a simple model of forest net primary production (NPP) that incorporates the primary mechanisms of plant carbon and nitrogen (N) balance. The model called MATE (Model Any Terrestrial Ecosystem) includes an equation for annual C balance that depends on light- saturated photosynthetic rate and therefore on [CO2], and an equation for N balance incorporating an expression for N uptake as a function of root mass. The C-N model is applied to a Free Air CO2 Exchange (FACE) experiment at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) in Tennessee, USA, where closed-canopy, monoculture stands of the deciduous hardwood sweetgum ( Liquidambar styraciflua) have been growing at [CO2] of 375 and 550 ppm for ten years. Features of this experiment are that the annual NPP response to elevated CO2 has averaged approximately 25% over seven years, but that annual fine-root production has almost doubled on average, with especially large increases in later years of the experiment (Norby et al. 2006). The model provides a simple graphical approach for analysing effects of elevated CO2 and N supply on leaf/root/wood C allocation and productivity. It simulates increases in NPP and fine-root production at the ORNL FACE site that are consistent

  11. Barium uptake by maize plants as affected by sewage sludge in a long-term field study.

    PubMed

    Nogueira, Thiago Assis Rodrigues; deMelo, Wanderley José; Fonseca, Ivana Machado; Marques, Marcos Omir; He, Zhenli

    2010-09-15

    A long-term experiment was carried out under field conditions in Jaboticabal, SP, Brazil, with the objective of evaluating the concentration of Ba in soil and in maize plants grown in a soil treated with sewage sludge for nine consecutive years. During 2005/2006, maize was used as test plants and the experimental design was in randomized complete blocks with four treatments and five replicates. Treatments consisted of: 0.0, 45.0, 90.0 and 127.5 t ha(-1) sewage sludge (dry basis). Sewage sludge application increased soil Ba concentration. Barium accumulated in the parts of maize plants were generally affected by the successive applications of sewage sludge to the soil. However, the concentration of Ba in maize grain did not exceed the critical levels of Ba for human consumption. Sewage sludge applied to soil for a long time did not affect dry matter and grain production, nevertheless had the similar effect of mineral fertilization. PMID:20579810

  12. Medicinal plants extracts affect virulence factors expression and biofilm formation by the uropathogenic Escherichia coli.

    PubMed

    Wojnicz, Dorota; Kucharska, Alicja Z; Sokół-Łętowska, Anna; Kicia, Marta; Tichaczek-Goska, Dorota

    2012-12-01

    Medicinal plants are an important source for the therapeutic remedies of various diseases including urinary tract infections. This prompted us to perform research in this area. We decided to focus on medicinal plants species used in urinary tract infections prevention. The aim of our study was to determine the influence of Betula pendula, Equisetum arvense, Herniaria glabra, Galium odoratum, Urtica dioica, and Vaccinium vitis-idaea extracts on bacterial survival and virulence factors involved in tissue colonization and biofilm formation of the uropathogenic Escherichia coli rods. Qualitative and quantitative analysis of plant extracts were performed. Antimicrobial assay relied on the estimation of the colony forming unit number. Hydrophobicity of cells was established by salt aggregation test. Using motility agar, the ability of bacteria to move was examined. The erythrocyte hemagglutination test was used for fimbriae P screening. Curli expression was determined using YESCA agar supplemented with congo red. Quantification of biofilm formation was carried out using a microtiter plate assay and a spectrophotometric method. The results of the study indicate significant differences between investigated extracts in their antimicrobial activities. The extracts of H. glabra and V. vitis-idaea showed the highest growth-inhibitory effects (p < 0.05). Surface hydrophobicity of autoaggregating E. coli strain changed after exposure to all plant extracts, except V. vitis-idaea (p > 0.05). The B. pendula and U. dioica extracts significantly reduced the motility of the E. coli rods (p < 0.05). All the extracts exhibited the anti-biofilm activity. PMID:22915095

  13. Spatial heterogeneity in light supply affects intraspecific competition of a stoloniferous clonal plant.

    PubMed

    Wang, Pu; Lei, Jing-Pin; Li, Mai-He; Yu, Fei-Hai

    2012-01-01

    Spatial heterogeneity in light supply is common in nature. Many studies have examined the effects of heterogeneous light supply on growth, morphology, physiology and biomass allocation of clonal plants, but few have tested those effects on intraspecific competition. In a greenhouse experiment, we grew one (no competition) or nine ramets (with intraspecific competition) of a stoloniferous clonal plant, Duchesnea indica, in three homogeneous light conditions (high, medium and low light intensity) and two heterogeneous ones differing in patch size (large and small patch treatments). The total light in the two heterogeneous treatments was the same as that in the homogeneous medium light treatment. Both decreasing light intensity and intraspecific competition significantly decreased the growth (biomass, number of ramets and total stolon length) of D. indica. As compared with the homogeneous medium light treatment, the large patch treatment significantly increased the growth of D. indica without intraspecific competition. However, the growth of D. indica with competition did not differ among the homogeneous medium light, the large and the small patch treatments. Consequently, light heterogeneity significantly increased intraspecific competition intensity, as measured by the decreased log response ratio. These results suggest that spatial heterogeneity in light supply can alter intraspecific interactions of clonal plants. PMID:22720041

  14. Plant compartment and biogeography affect microbiome composition in cultivated and native Agave species.

    PubMed

    Coleman-Derr, Devin; Desgarennes, Damaris; Fonseca-Garcia, Citlali; Gross, Stephen; Clingenpeel, Scott; Woyke, Tanja; North, Gretchen; Visel, Axel; Partida-Martinez, Laila P; Tringe, Susannah G

    2016-01-01

    Desert plants are hypothesized to survive the environmental stress inherent to these regions in part thanks to symbioses with microorganisms, and yet these microbial species, the communities they form, and the forces that influence them are poorly understood. Here we report the first comprehensive investigation of the microbial communities associated with species of Agave, which are native to semiarid and arid regions of Central and North America and are emerging as biofuel feedstocks. We examined prokaryotic and fungal communities in the rhizosphere, phyllosphere, leaf and root endosphere, as well as proximal and distal soil samples from cultivated and native agaves, through Illumina amplicon sequencing. Phylogenetic profiling revealed that the composition of prokaryotic communities was primarily determined by the plant compartment, whereas the composition of fungal communities was mainly influenced by the biogeography of the host species. Cultivated A. tequilana exhibited lower levels of prokaryotic diversity compared with native agaves, although no differences in microbial diversity were found in the endosphere. Agaves shared core prokaryotic and fungal taxa known to promote plant growth and confer tolerance to abiotic stress, which suggests common principles underpinning Agave-microbe interactions. PMID:26467257

  15. Comparison of Soybean Transformation Efficiency and Plant Factors Affecting Transformation during the Agrobacterium Infection Process

    PubMed Central

    Jia, Yuying; Yao, Xingdong; Zhao, Mingzhe; Zhao, Qiang; Du, Yanli; Yu, Cuimei; Xie, Futi

    2015-01-01

    The susceptibility of soybean genotype to Agrobacterium infection is a key factor for the high level of genetic transformation efficiency. The objective of this study is to evaluate the plant factors related to transformation in cotyledonary nodes during the Agrobacterium infection process. This study selected three genotypes (Williams 82, Shennong 9 and Bert) with high transformation efficiency, which presented better susceptibility to Agrobacterium infection, and three low transformation efficiency genotypes (General, Liaodou 16 and Kottman), which showed a relatively weak susceptibility. Gibberellin (GA) levels and soybean GA20ox2 and CYP707A2 transcripts of high-efficiency genotypes increased and were higher than those of low-efficiency genotypes; however, the opposite performance was shown in abscisic acid (ABA). Higher zeatin riboside (ZR) content and DNA quantity, and relatively higher expression of soybean IPT5, CYCD3 and CYCA3 were obtained in high-efficiency genotypes. High-efficiency genotypes had low methyl jasmonate (MeJA) content, polyphenol oxidase (PPO) and peroxidase (POD) activity, and relatively lower expression of soybean OPR3, PPO1 and PRX71. GA and ZR were positive plant factors for Agrobacterium-mediated soybean transformation by facilitating germination and growth, and increasing the number of cells in DNA synthesis cycle, respectively; MeJA, PPO, POD and ABA were negative plant factors by inducing defence reactions and repressing germination and growth, respectively. PMID:26262617

  16. Plant Defense Inhibitors Affect the Structures of Midgut Cells in Drosophila melanogaster and Callosobruchus maculatus

    PubMed Central

    Li-Byarlay, Hongmei; Pittendrigh, Barry R.; Murdock, Larry L.

    2016-01-01

    Plants produce proteins such as protease inhibitors and lectins as defenses against herbivorous insects and pathogens. However, no systematic studies have explored the structural responses in the midguts of insects when challenged with plant defensive proteins and lectins across different species. In this study, we fed two kinds of protease inhibitors and lectins to the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster and alpha-amylase inhibitors and lectins to the cowpea bruchid Callosobruchus maculatus. We assessed the changes in midgut cell structures by comparing them with such structures in insects receiving normal diets or subjected to food deprivation. Using light and transmission electron microscopy in both species, we observed structural changes in the midgut peritrophic matrix as well as shortened microvilli on the surfaces of midgut epithelial cells in D. melanogaster. Dietary inhibitors and lectins caused similar lesions in the epithelial cells but not much change in the peritrophic matrix in both species. We also noted structural damages in the Drosophila midgut after six hours of starvation and changes were still present after 12 hours. Our study provided the first evidence of key structural changes of midguts using a comparative approach between a dipteran and a coleopteran. Our particular observation and discussion on plant–insect interaction and dietary stress are relevant for future mode of action studies of plant defensive protein in insect physiology. PMID:27594789

  17. Spatial Heterogeneity in Light Supply Affects Intraspecific Competition of a Stoloniferous Clonal Plant

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Pu; Lei, Jing-Pin; Li, Mai-He; Yu, Fei-Hai

    2012-01-01

    Spatial heterogeneity in light supply is common in nature. Many studies have examined the effects of heterogeneous light supply on growth, morphology, physiology and biomass allocation of clonal plants, but few have tested those effects on intraspecific competition. In a greenhouse experiment, we grew one (no competition) or nine ramets (with intraspecific competition) of a stoloniferous clonal plant, Duchesnea indica, in three homogeneous light conditions (high, medium and low light intensity) and two heterogeneous ones differing in patch size (large and small patch treatments). The total light in the two heterogeneous treatments was the same as that in the homogeneous medium light treatment. Both decreasing light intensity and intraspecific competition significantly decreased the growth (biomass, number of ramets and total stolon length) of D. indica. As compared with the homogeneous medium light treatment, the large patch treatment significantly increased the growth of D. indica without intraspecific competition. However, the growth of D. indica with competition did not differ among the homogeneous medium light, the large and the small patch treatments. Consequently, light heterogeneity significantly increased intraspecific competition intensity, as measured by the decreased log response ratio. These results suggest that spatial heterogeneity in light supply can alter intraspecific interactions of clonal plants. PMID:22720041

  18. The community structure of endophytic bacteria in different parts of Huanglongbing-affected citrus plants

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The analyses methods of Pearson correlation coefficient (PCC), hierarchical cluster analysis and diversity index were used to study the relevance between citrus huanglongbing (HLB) and the endophytic bacteria in different branches and leaves as well as roots of huanglongbing (HLB)-affected citrus tr...

  19. Solubility and Plant Availability of Nutrients as Affected by Soil Drainage Conditions

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Corn growth is affected due to oxygen deficiency and root death in a perched water table (PWT). The study objective was to evaluate a surface application of FGD gypsum (FGDG) and glyphosate (GLY) on nutrient uptake in corn with different drainage conditions. The experiment was conducted in greenhous...

  20. Methods and concepts in quantifying resistance to drought, salt and freezing, abiotic stresses that affect plant water status.

    PubMed

    Verslues, Paul E; Agarwal, Manu; Katiyar-Agarwal, Surekha; Zhu, Jianhua; Zhu, Jian-Kang

    2006-02-01

    The abiotic stresses of drought, salinity and freezing are linked by the fact that they all decrease the availability of water to plant cells. This decreased availability of water is quantified as a decrease in water potential. Plants resist low water potential and related stresses by modifying water uptake and loss to avoid low water potential, accumulating solutes and modifying the properties of cell walls to avoid the dehydration induced by low water potential and using protective proteins and mechanisms to tolerate reduced water content by preventing or repairing cell damage. Salt stress also alters plant ion homeostasis, and under many conditions this may be the predominant factor affecting plant performance. Our emphasis is on experiments that quantify resistance to realistic and reproducible low water potential (drought), salt and freezing stresses while being suitable for genetic studies where a large number of lines must be analyzed. Detailed protocols for the use of polyethylene glycol-infused agar plates to impose low water potential stress, assay of salt tolerance based on root elongation, quantification of freezing tolerance and the use of electrolyte leakage experiments to quantify cellular damage induced by freezing and low water potential are also presented. PMID:16441347

  1. Ozone degrades common herbivore-induced plant volatiles: does this affect herbivore prey location by predators and parasitoids?

    PubMed

    Pinto, Delia M; Blande, James D; Nykänen, Riikka; Dong, Wen-Xia; Nerg, Anne-Marja; Holopainen, Jarmo K

    2007-04-01

    Inducible terpenes and lipoxygenase pathway products, e.g., green-leaf volatiles (GLVs), are emitted by plants in response to herbivory. They are used by carnivorous arthropods to locate prey. These compounds are highly reactive with atmospheric pollutants. We hypothesized that elevated ozone (O(3)) may affect chemical communication between plants and natural enemies of herbivores by degrading signal compounds. In this study, we have used two tritrophic systems (Brassica oleracea-Plutella xylostella-Cotesia plutellae and Phaseolus lunatus-Tetranychus urticae-Phytoseiulus persimilis) to show that exposure of plants to moderately enhanced atmospheric O(3) levels (60 and 120 nl l(-1)) results in complete degradation of most herbivore-induced terpenes and GLVs, which is congruent with our hypothesis. However, orientation behavior of natural enemies was not disrupted by O(3) exposure in either tritrophic system. Other herbivore-induced volatiles, such as benzyl cyanide, a nitrile in cabbage, and methyl salicylate in lima bean, were not significantly reduced in reactions with O(3). We suggest that more atmospherically stable herbivore-induced volatile compounds can provide important long-distance plant-carnivore signals and may be used by natural enemies of herbivores to orientate in O(3)-polluted environments. PMID:17333375

  2. Contamination of soil, medicinal, and fodder plants with lead and cadmium present in mine-affected areas, Northern Pakistan.

    PubMed

    Nawab, Javed; Khan, Sardar; Shah, Mohammad Tahir; Qamar, Zahir; Din, Islamud; Mahmood, Qaisar; Gul, Nayab; Huang, Qing

    2015-09-01

    This study aimed to investigate the lead (Pb) and cadmium (Cd) concentrations in the soil and plants (medicinal and fodder) grown in chromite mining-affected areas, Northern Pakistan. Soil and plant samples were collected and analyzed for Pb and Cd concentrations using atomic absorption spectrometer. Soil pollution load indices (PLIs) were greater than 2 for both Cd and Pb, indicating high level of contamination in the study area. Furthermore, Cd concentrations in the soil surrounding the mining sites exceeded the maximum allowable limit (MAL) (0.6 mg kg(-1)), while the concentrations of Pb were lower than the MAL (350 mg kg(-1)) set by State Environmental Protection Administration (SEPA) for agriculture soil. The concentrations of Cd and Pb were significantly higher (P < 0.001) in the soil of the mining-contaminated sites as compared to the reference site, which can be attributed to the dispersion of toxic heavy metals, present in the bed rocks and waste of the mines. The concentrations of Pb and Cd in majority of medicinal and fodder plant species grown in surrounding areas of mines were higher than their MALs set by World Health Organization/Food Agriculture Organization (WHO/FAO) for herbal (10 and 0.3 mg kg(-1), respectively) and edible (0.3 and 0.2 mg kg(-1), respectively) plants. The high concentrations of Cd and Pb may cause contamination of the food chain and health risk. PMID:26324064

  3. A Novel Role for Arabidopsis CBL1 in Affecting Plant Responses to Glucose and Gibberellin during Germination and Seedling Development

    PubMed Central

    Li, Zhi-Yong; Xu, Zhao-Shi; Chen, Yang; He, Guang-Yuan; Yang, Guang-Xiao; Chen, Ming; Li, Lian-Cheng; Ma, You-Zhi

    2013-01-01

    Glucose and phytohormones such as abscisic acid (ABA), ethylene, and gibberellin (GA) coordinately regulate germination and seedling development. However, there is still inadequate evidence to link their molecular roles in affecting plant responses. Calcium acts as a second messenger in a diverse range of signal transduction pathways. As calcium sensors unique to plants, calcineurin B-like (CBL) proteins are well known to modulate abiotic stress responses. In this study, it was found that CBL1 was induced by glucose in Arabidopsis. Loss-of-function mutant cbl1 exhibited hypersensitivity to glucose and paclobutrazol, a GA biosynthetic inhibitor. Several sugar-responsive and GA biosynthetic gene expressions were altered in the cbl1 mutant. CBL1 protein physically interacted with AKINβ1, the regulatory β subunit of the SnRK1 complex which has a central role in sugar signaling. Our results indicate a novel role for CBL1 in modulating responses to glucose and GA signals. PMID:23437128

  4. Plant Species and Functional Group Combinations Affect Green Roof Ecosystem Functions

    PubMed Central

    Lundholm, Jeremy; MacIvor, J. Scott; MacDougall, Zachary; Ranalli, Melissa

    2010-01-01

    Background Green roofs perform ecosystem services such as summer roof temperature reduction and stormwater capture that directly contribute to lower building energy use and potential economic savings. These services are in turn related to ecosystem functions performed by the vegetation layer such as radiation reflection and transpiration, but little work has examined the role of plant species composition and diversity in improving these functions. Methodology/Principal Findings We used a replicated modular extensive (shallow growing- medium) green roof system planted with monocultures or mixtures containing one, three or five life-forms, to quantify two ecosystem services: summer roof cooling and water capture. We also measured the related ecosystem properties/processes of albedo, evapotranspiration, and the mean and temporal variability of aboveground biomass over four months. Mixtures containing three or five life-form groups, simultaneously optimized several green roof ecosystem functions, outperforming monocultures and single life-form groups, but there was much variation in performance depending on which life-forms were present in the three life-form mixtures. Some mixtures outperformed the best monocultures for water capture, evapotranspiration, and an index combining both water capture and temperature reductions. Combinations of tall forbs, grasses and succulents simultaneously optimized a range of ecosystem performance measures, thus the main benefit of including all three groups was not to maximize any single process but to perform a variety of functions well. Conclusions/Significance Ecosystem services from green roofs can be improved by planting certain life-form groups in combination, directly contributing to climate change mitigation and adaptation strategies. The strong performance by certain mixtures of life-forms, especially tall forbs, grasses and succulents, warrants further investigation into niche complementarity or facilitation as mechanisms

  5. Initial Assessment of Sulfur-Iodine Process Safety Issues and How They May Affect Pilot Plant Design and Operation

    SciTech Connect

    Robert S. Cherry

    2006-09-01

    The sulfur-iodine process to make hydrogen by the thermochemical splitting of water is under active development as part of a U.S. Department of Energy program. An integrated lab scale system is currently being designed and built. The next planned stage of development is a pilot plant with a thermal input of about 500 kW, equivalent to about 30,000 standard liters per hour of hydrogen production. The sulfur-iodine process contains a variety of hazards, including temperatures up to 850 ºC and hazardous chemical species including SO2, H2SO4, HI, I2, and of course H2. The siting and design of a pilot plant must consider these and other hazards. This report presents an initial analysis of the hazards that might affect pilot plant design and should be considered in the initial planning. The general hazards that have been identified include reactivity, flammability, toxicity, pressure, electrical hazards, and industrial hazards such as lifting and rotating equipment. Personnel exposure to these hazards could occur during normal operations, which includes not only running the process at the design conditions but also initial inventory loading, heatup, startup, shutdown, and system flushing before equipment maintenance. Because of the complexity and severity of the process, these ancillary operations are expected to be performed frequently. In addition, personnel could be exposed to the hazards during various abnormal situations which could include unplanned phase changes of liquids or solids, leaks of process fluids or cooling water into other process streams, unintentional introducion of foreign species into the process, and unexpected side reactions. Design of a pilot plant will also be affected by various codes and regulations such as the International Building Code, the International Fire Code, various National Fire Protection Association Codes, and the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act.

  6. Lignin, land plants, and fungi: Biological evolution affecting Phanerozoic oxygen balance

    SciTech Connect

    Robinson, J.M. )

    1990-07-01

    As dominance shifted from lycopsids and pteridophytes in the Paleozoic, to gymnosperms in the Mesozoic, to angiosperms in the Tertiary, plant architecture became more sparing in its use of lignin. Lignin-degrading organisms were rare or absent in the Paleozoic, but diverse and abundant in the Tertiary. Thus the terrigenous organic-carbon cycle has quickened over time, the fraction of terrestrial primary production preserved in coals and kerogens has declined, and terrestrial production has been able to increase over time without concomitant rises in atmospheric O{sub 2}.

  7. Factors Affecting the Extraction of Intact Ribonucleic Acid from Plant Tissues Containing Interfering Phenolic Compounds

    PubMed Central

    Newbury, H. John; Possingham, John V.

    1977-01-01

    Using conventional methods it is impossible to extract RNA as uncomplexed intact molecules from the leaves of grapevines (Vitis vinifera L.) and from a number of woody perennial species that contain high levels of reactive phenolic compounds. A procedure involving the use of high concentrations of the chaotropic agent sodium perchlorate prevents the binding of phenolic compounds to RNA during extraction. Analyses of the phenolics present in plant tissues used in these experiments indicate that there is a poor correlation between the total phenolic content and the complexing of RNA. However, qualitative analyses suggest that proanthocyanidins are involved in the tanning of RNA during conventional extractions. PMID:16660134

  8. Camphene, a Plant Derived Monoterpene, Exerts Its Hypolipidemic Action by Affecting SREBP-1 and MTP Expression.

    PubMed

    Vallianou, Ioanna; Hadzopoulou-Cladaras, Margarita

    2016-01-01

    The control of hyperlipidemia plays a central role in cardiovascular disease. Previously, we have shown that camphene, a constituent of mastic gum oil, lowers cholesterol and triglycerides (TG) in the plasma of hyperlipidemic rats without affecting HMG-CoA reductase activity, suggesting that its hypocholesterolemic and hypotriglyceridemic effects are associated with a mechanism of action different than that of statins. In the present study, we examine the mechanism by which camphene exerts its hypolipidemic action. We evaluated the effect of camphene on the de novo synthesis of cholesterol and TG from [14C]-acetate in HepG2 cells, along with the statin mevinolin. Camphene inhibited the biosynthesis of cholesterol in a concentration-dependent manner, and a maximal inhibition of 39% was observed at 100 μM while mevinolin nearly abolished cholesterol biosynthesis. Moreover, treatment with camphene reduced TG by 34% and increased apolipoprotein AI expression. In contrast, mevinolin increased TG by 26% and had a modest effect on apolipoprotein AI expression. To evaluate the mode of action of camphene, we examined its effects on the expression of SREBP-1, which affects TG biosynthesis and SREBP-2, which mostly affects sterol synthesis. Interestingly, camphene increased the nuclear translocation of the mature form of SREBP-1 while mevinolin was found to increase the amount of the mature form of SREBP-2. The effect of camphene is most likely regulated through SREBP-1 by affecting MTP levels in response to a decrease in the intracellular cholesterol. We propose that camphene upregulates SREBP-1 expression and MTP inhibition is likely to be a probable mechanism whereby camphene exerts its hypolipidemic effect. PMID:26784701

  9. Camphene, a Plant Derived Monoterpene, Exerts Its Hypolipidemic Action by Affecting SREBP-1 and MTP Expression

    PubMed Central

    Vallianou, Ioanna; Hadzopoulou-Cladaras, Margarita

    2016-01-01

    The control of hyperlipidemia plays a central role in cardiovascular disease. Previously, we have shown that camphene, a constituent of mastic gum oil, lowers cholesterol and triglycerides (TG) in the plasma of hyperlipidemic rats without affecting HMG-CoA reductase activity, suggesting that its hypocholesterolemic and hypotriglyceridemic effects are associated with a mechanism of action different than that of statins. In the present study, we examine the mechanism by which camphene exerts its hypolipidemic action. We evaluated the effect of camphene on the de novo synthesis of cholesterol and TG from [14C]-acetate in HepG2 cells, along with the statin mevinolin. Camphene inhibited the biosynthesis of cholesterol in a concentration-dependent manner, and a maximal inhibition of 39% was observed at 100 μM while mevinolin nearly abolished cholesterol biosynthesis. Moreover, treatment with camphene reduced TG by 34% and increased apolipoprotein AI expression. In contrast, mevinolin increased TG by 26% and had a modest effect on apolipoprotein AI expression. To evaluate the mode of action of camphene, we examined its effects on the expression of SREBP-1, which affects TG biosynthesis and SREBP-2, which mostly affects sterol synthesis. Interestingly, camphene increased the nuclear translocation of the mature form of SREBP-1 while mevinolin was found to increase the amount of the mature form of SREBP-2. The effect of camphene is most likely regulated through SREBP-1 by affecting MTP levels in response to a decrease in the intracellular cholesterol. We propose that camphene upregulates SREBP-1 expression and MTP inhibition is likely to be a probable mechanism whereby camphene exerts its hypolipidemic effect. PMID:26784701

  10. Within plant distribution of Potato Virus Y in hairy nightshade (Solanum sarrachoides): an inoculum source affecting PVY aphid transmission.

    PubMed

    Cervantes, Felix A; Alvarez, Juan M

    2011-08-01

    Potato virus Y (PVY) is vectored by several potato-colonizing and non-colonizing aphid species in a non-persistent manner and has a wide host range. It occurs naturally in several plant families. Myzus persicae and Macrosiphum euphorbiae are the most efficient potato-colonizing aphid vectors of PVY. Rhopalosiphum padi, a cereal aphid that migrates in large numbers through potato fields during the middle of the growing season, does not colonize potato plants but can transmit PVY. Hairy nightshade, Solanum sarrachoides, a prevalent annual solanaceous weed in the Pacific Northwest (PNW) of the United States, is an alternative host for PVY and a preferred host for M. persicae and M. euphorbiae. Hence, hairy nightshade plants might play an important role as an inoculum source in the epidemiology of PVY. We looked at titre accumulation and distribution of PVY(O), PVY(N:O) and PVY(NTN) in S. sarrachoides and potato after aphid inoculation with M. persicae and studied the transmission of PVY(O) and PVY(NTN), by M. persicae, M. euphorbiae and R. padi from hairy nightshade to potato plants. Virus titre at different positions on the plant was similar in S. sarrachoides and potato plants with strains PVY(O) and PVY(N:O). Titres of PVY(NTN) were similar in S. sarrachoides and potato but differences in titre were observed at different positions within the plant depending on the plant phenology. Percentage transmission of PVY(NTN) by M. persicae and M. euphorbiae was twice as high (46 and 34%, respectively) from hairy nightshade to potato than from potato to potato (20 and 14%). Percentage transmission of PVY(O) by M. persicae and M. euphorbiae was not affected by the inoculum source. No effect of the inoculum source was observed in the transmission of either PVY strain by R. padi. These results show that hairy nightshade may be an equal or better virus reservoir than potato and thus, important in the epidemiology of PVY. PMID:21601597

  11. Metal contaminated biochar and wood ash negatively affect plant growth and soil quality after land application.

    PubMed

    Jones, D L; Quilliam, R S

    2014-07-15

    Pyrolysis or combustion of waste wood can provide a renewable source of energy and produce byproducts which can be recycled back to land. To be sustainable requires that these byproducts pose minimal threat to the environment or human health. Frequently, reclaimed waste wood is contaminated by preservative-treated timber containing high levels of heavy metals. We investigated the effect of feedstock contamination from copper-preservative treated wood on the behaviour of pyrolysis-derived biochar and combustion-derived ash in plant-soil systems. Biochar and wood ash were applied to soil at typical agronomic rates. The presence of preservative treated timber in the feedstock increased available soil Cu; however, critical Cu guidance limits were only exceeded at high rates of feedstock contamination. Negative effects on plant growth and soil quality were only seen at high levels of biochar contamination (>50% derived from preservative-treated wood). Negative effects of wood ash contamination were apparent at lower levels of contamination (>10% derived from preservative treated wood). Complete removal of preservative treated timber from wood recycling facilities is notoriously difficult and low levels of contamination are commonplace. We conclude that low levels of contamination from Cu-treated wood should pose minimal environmental risk to biochar and ash destined for land application. PMID:24915641

  12. Nature's amazing biopolymer: basic mechanical and hydrological properties of soil affected by plant exudates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Naveed, Muhammad; Roose, Tiina; Raffan, Annette; George, Timothy; Bengough, Glyn; Brown, Lawrie; Keyes, Sam; Daly, Keith; Hallett, Paul

    2016-04-01

    Plant exudates are known to have a very large impact on soil physical properties through changes in mechanical and hydrological processes driven by long-chain polysaccharides and surface active compounds. Whilst these impacts are well known, the basic physical properties of these exudates have only been reported in a small number of studies. We present data for exudates obtained from barley roots and chia seeds, incorporating treatments examining biological decomposition of the exudates. When these exudates were added to a sandy loam soil, contact angle and drop penetration time increased exponentially with increasing exudate concentration. These wetting properties were strongly correlated with both exudate density and zero-shear viscosity, but not with exudate surface tension. Water holding capacity and water repellency of exudate mixed soil tremendously increased with exudate concentration, however they were significantly reduced on decomposition when measured after 14 days of incubation at 16C. Mechanical stability greatly increased with increasing exudate amendment to soils, which was assessed using a rheological amplitude sweep test near saturation, at -50 cm matric potential (field capacity) using indentation test, and at air-dry condition using the Brazilian test. This reflects that exudates not only attenuate plant water stress but also impart mechanical stability to the rhizosphere. These data are highly relevant to the understanding and modelling of rhizosphere development, which is the next phase of our research.

  13. Nanosecond electric pulses affect a plant-specific kinesin at the plasma membrane.

    PubMed

    Kühn, Sebastian; Liu, Qiong; Eing, Christian; Frey, Wolfgang; Nick, Peter

    2013-12-01

    Electric pulses with high field strength and durations in the nanosecond range (nsPEFs) are of considerable interest for biotechnological and medical applications. However, their actual cellular site of action is still under debate--due to their extremely short rise times, nsPEFs are thought to act mainly in the cell interior rather than at the plasma membrane. On the other hand, nsPEFs can induce membrane permeability. We have revisited this issue using plant cells as a model. By mapping the cellular responses to nsPEFs of different field strength and duration in the tobacco BY-2 cell line, we could define a treatment that does not impinge on short-term viability, such that the physiological responses to the treatment can be followed. We observe, for these conditions, a mild disintegration of the cytoskeleton, impaired membrane localization of the PIN1 auxin-efflux transporter and a delayed premitotic nuclear positioning followed by a transient mitotic arrest. To address the target site of nsPEFs, we made use of the plant-specific KCH kinesin, which can assume two different states with different localization (either near the nucleus or at the cell membrane) driving different cellular functions. We show that nsPEFs reduce cell expansion in nontransformed cells but promote expansion in a line overexpressing KCH. Since cell elongation and cell widening are linked to the KCH localized at the cell membrane, the inverted response in the KCH overexpressor provides evidence for a direct action of nsPEFs, also at the cell membrane. PMID:24062185

  14. Plant Pathogenic Microbial Communication Affected by Elevated Temperature in Pectobacterium carotovorum subsp. carotovorum.

    PubMed

    Saha, N D; Chaudhary, A; Singh, S D; Singh, D; Walia, S; Das, T K

    2015-11-01

    Gram-negative plant pathogenic bacteria regulate specific gene expression in a population density-dependent manner by sensing level of Acyl-Homoserine Lactone (HSL) molecules which they produce and liberate to the environment, called Quorum Sensing (QS). The production of virulence factors (extracellular enzyme viz. cellulase, pectinase, etc.) in Pectobacterium carotovorum subsp. carotovorum (Pcc) is under strong regulation of QS. The QS signal molecule, N-(3-oxohexanoyl)-L-Homoserine Lactone (OHHL) was found as the central regulatory system for the virulence factor production in Pcc and is also under strict regulation of external environmental temperature. Under seven different incubation temperatures (24, 26, 28, 30, 33, 35, and 37 °C) in laboratory condition, highest amount of OHHL (804 violacein unit) and highest (79 %) Disease Severity Index (DSI) were measured at 33 °C. The OHHL production kinetics showed accumulation of highest concentration of OHHL at late log phase of the growth but diminution in the concentration occurred during stationary phase onwards to death phase. At higher temperature (35 and 37 °C) exposure, OHHL was not at detectable range. The effect of temperature on virulence factor production is the concomitant effect of HSL production and degradation which justifies less disease severity index in cross-inoculated tomato fruits incubated at 35 and 37 °C. The nondetection of the OHHL in the elevated temperature may because of degradation as these signal molecules are quite sensitive and prone to get degraded under different physical factors. This result provides the rationale behind the highest disease severity up to certain elevated temperature and leaves opportunities for investigation on mutation, co-evolution of superior plant pathogen with more stable HSL signals-mediated pathogenesis under global warming context. PMID:26271295

  15. Accumulation of N-Acetylglucosamine Oligomers in the Plant Cell Wall Affects Plant Architecture in a Dose-Dependent and Conditional Manner1[W][OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Vanholme, Bartel; Vanholme, Ruben; Turumtay, Halbay; Goeminne, Geert; Cesarino, Igor; Goubet, Florence; Morreel, Kris; Rencoret, Jorge; Bulone, Vincent; Hooijmaijers, Cortwa; De Rycke, Riet; Gheysen, Godelieve; Ralph, John; De Block, Marc; Meulewaeter, Frank; Boerjan, Wout

    2014-01-01

    To study the effect of short N-acetylglucosamine (GlcNAc) oligosaccharides on the physiology of plants, N-ACETYLGLUCOSAMINYLTRANSFERASE (NodC) of Azorhizobium caulinodans was expressed in Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana). The corresponding enzyme catalyzes the polymerization of GlcNAc and, accordingly, β-1,4-GlcNAc oligomers accumulated in the plant. A phenotype characterized by difficulties in developing an inflorescence stem was visible when plants were grown for several weeks under short-day conditions before transfer to long-day conditions. In addition, a positive correlation between the oligomer concentration and the penetrance of the phenotype was demonstrated. Although NodC overexpression lines produced less cell wall compared with wild-type plants under nonpermissive conditions, no indications were found for changes in the amount of the major cell wall polymers. The effect on the cell wall was reflected at the transcriptome level. In addition to genes encoding cell wall-modifying enzymes, a whole set of genes encoding membrane-coupled receptor-like kinases were differentially expressed upon GlcNAc accumulation, many of which encoded proteins with an extracellular Domain of Unknown Function26. Although stress-related genes were also differentially expressed, the observed response differed from that of a classical chitin response. This is in line with the fact that the produced chitin oligomers were too small to activate the chitin receptor-mediated signal cascade. Based on our observations, we propose a model in which the oligosaccharides modify the architecture of the cell wall by acting as competitors in carbohydrate-carbohydrate or carbohydrate-protein interactions, thereby affecting noncovalent interactions in the cell wall or at the interface between the cell wall and the plasma membrane. PMID:24664205

  16. From facilitation to competition: temperature-driven shift in dominant plant interactions affects population dynamics in seminatural grasslands.

    PubMed

    Olsen, Siri L; Töpper, Joachim P; Skarpaas, Olav; Vandvik, Vigdis; Klanderud, Kari

    2016-05-01

    Biotic interactions are often ignored in assessments of climate change impacts. However, climate-related changes in species interactions, often mediated through increased dominance of certain species or functional groups, may have important implications for how species respond to climate warming and altered precipitation patterns. We examined how a dominant plant functional group affected the population dynamics of four co-occurring forb species by experimentally removing graminoids in seminatural grasslands. Specifically, we explored how the interaction between dominants and subordinates varied with climate by replicating the removal experiment across a climate grid consisting of 12 field sites spanning broad-scale temperature and precipitation gradients in southern Norway. Biotic interactions affected population growth rates of all study species, and the net outcome of interactions between dominants and subordinates switched from facilitation to competition with increasing temperature along the temperature gradient. The impacts of competitive interactions on subordinates in the warmer sites could primarily be attributed to reduced plant survival. Whereas the response to dominant removal varied with temperature, there was no overall effect of precipitation on the balance between competition and facilitation. Our findings suggest that global warming may increase the relative importance of competitive interactions in seminatural grasslands across a wide range of precipitation levels, thereby favouring highly competitive dominant species over subordinate species. As a result, seminatural grasslands may become increasingly dependent on disturbance (i.e. traditional management such as grazing and mowing) to maintain viable populations of subordinate species and thereby biodiversity under future climates. Our study highlights the importance of population-level studies replicated under different climatic conditions for understanding the underlying mechanisms of climate

  17. Whole Genome Duplication Affects Evolvability of Flowering Time in an Autotetraploid Plant

    PubMed Central

    Martin, Sara L.; Husband, Brian C.

    2012-01-01

    Whole genome duplications have occurred recurrently throughout the evolutionary history of eukaryotes. The resulting genetic and phenotypic changes can influence physiological and ecological responses to the environment; however, the impact of genome copy number on evolvability has rarely been examined experimentally. Here, we evaluate the effect of genome duplication on the ability to respond to selection for early flowering time in lines drawn from naturally occurring diploid and autotetraploid populations of the plant Chamerion angustifolium (fireweed). We contrast this with the result of four generations of selection on synthesized neoautotetraploids, whose genic variability is similar to diploids but genome copy number is similar to autotetraploids. In addition, we examine correlated responses to selection in all three groups. Diploid and both extant tetraploid and neoautotetraploid lines responded to selection with significant reductions in time to flowering. Evolvability, measured as realized heritability, was significantly lower in extant tetraploids ( = 0.31) than diploids ( = 0.40). Neotetraploids exhibited the highest evolutionary response ( = 0.55). The rapid shift in flowering time in neotetraploids was associated with an increase in phenotypic variability across generations, but not with change in genome size or phenotypic correlations among traits. Our results suggest that whole genome duplications, without hybridization, may initially alter evolutionary rate, and that the dynamic nature of neoautopolyploids may contribute to the prevalence of polyploidy throughout eukaryotes. PMID:23028620

  18. Plant essential oils affect the toxicities of carbaryl and permethrin against Aedes aegypti (Diptera: Culicidae).

    PubMed

    Tong, Fan; Bloomquist, Jeffrey R

    2013-07-01

    ABSTRACT Phytochemicals have been considered as alternatives for conventional pesticides because of their low mammalian toxicity and environmental safety. They usually display less potent insecticidal effects than synthetic compounds, but may express as yet unknown modes of action. In the current study, we evaluated 14 plant essential oils for their toxicities and synergistic effects with carbaryl and permethrin against fourth instars of Aedes aegypti (L.) as well as 5-7-d-old adults. Six essential oils showed significant synergistic effects with carbaryl at 10-50 mg/liter, but paradoxically all of them decreased the toxicity of permethrin against Ae. aegypti larvae. None showed toxicity or synergistic effects on Ae. aegypti adults, at doses up to 2,000 ng/ insect. The six essential oils displaying synergistic effects in Ae. aegypti larvae inhibited the in vitro activities of cytochrome P450 monooxygenases and carboxylesterases in the low milligram per liter range. The data indicated that cytochrome P450 monooxygenases and carboxylesterase were probably targets for these natural synergists. Thus, the mechanism of synergism was most likely inhibition of metabolism and not interacting target site effects. PMID:23926781

  19. Source population characteristics affect heterosis following genetic rescue of fragmented plant populations

    PubMed Central

    Pickup, M.; Field, D. L.; Rowell, D. M.; Young, A. G.

    2013-01-01

    Understanding the relative importance of heterosis and outbreeding depression over multiple generations is a key question in evolutionary biology and is essential for identifying appropriate genetic sources for population and ecosystem restoration. Here we use 2455 experimental crosses between 12 population pairs of the rare perennial plant Rutidosis leptorrhynchoides (Asteraceae) to investigate the multi-generational (F1, F2, F3) fitness outcomes of inter-population hybridization. We detected no evidence of outbreeding depression, with inter-population hybrids and backcrosses showing either similar fitness or significant heterosis for fitness components across the three generations. Variation in heterosis among population pairs was best explained by characteristics of the foreign source or home population, and was greatest when the source population was large, with high genetic diversity and low inbreeding, and the home population was small and inbred. Our results indicate that the primary consideration for maximizing progeny fitness following population augmentation or restoration is the use of seed from large, genetically diverse populations. PMID:23173202

  20. Factors affecting population of filamentous bacteria in wastewater treatment plants with nutrients removal.

    PubMed

    Miłobędzka, Aleksandra; Witeska, Anna; Muszyński, Adam

    2016-01-01

    Filamentous population in activated sludge and key operational parameters of full-scale municipal wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) with bulking problems representative for Poland were investigated with quantitative fluorescence in situ hybridization. Statistical analyses revealed few relationships between operational parameters and biovolume of filamentous bacteria. Sludge age was not only positively correlated with abundance of Chloroflexi (parametric correlation and principal component analysis (PCA)), but also differentiated Microthrix population (analysis of variance (ANOVA)). Phylum Chloroflexi and pH presented a negative relation during the study (PCA). ANOVA showed that pH of influent and sludge volume index (SVI) differentiated abundance of types 0803 and 1851 of Chloroflexi and candidate division TM7. SVI increased along with higher abundance of Microthrix (positive parametric and non-parametric correlations and positive relation in PCA). Biovolumes of morphotypes 0803 and 1851 of Chloroflexi were differentiated by organic matter in influent, also by nutrients in the case of Chloroflexi type 1851. Chemical and biological oxygen demands (COD and BOD5, respectively) were negatively correlated with Microthrix. COD also differentiated the abundance of Haliscomenobacter hydrossis. Results of the study can be used to prevent WWTPs from excessive proliferation of filamentous bacteria and operational problems caused by them--bulking and foaming of activated sludge. PMID:26901721

  1. Factors affecting the uptake of 14C-labeled organic chemicals by plants from soil

    SciTech Connect

    Topp, E.; Scheunert, I.; Attar, A.; Korte, F.

    1986-04-01

    The uptake of /sup 14/C from various /sup 14/C-labeled organic chemicals from different chemical classes by barley and cress seedlings from soil was studied for 7 days in a closed aerated laboratory apparatus. Uptake by roots and by leaves via the air was determined separately. Although comparative long-term outdoor studies showed that an equilibrium is not reached within a short time period, plant concentration factors after 7 days could be correlated to some physicochemical and structural substance properties. Barley root concentration factors due to root uptake, expressed as concentration in roots divided by concentration in soil, gave a fairly good negative correlation to adsorption coefficients based on soil organic carbon. Barley root concentration factors, expressed as concentration in roots divided by concentration in soil liquid, gave a positive correlation to the n-octanol/water partition coefficients. Uptake of chemicals by barley leaves via air was strongly positively correlated to volatilization of chemicals from soil. Both root and foliar uptake by barley could be correlated well to the molecular weight of 14 chemicals. Uptake of chemicals by cress differed from that by barley, and correlations to physicochemical substance properties mostly were poor.

  2. Solubility, mobility and plant uptake of toxic elements in retorted oil shales as affected by recarbonation

    SciTech Connect

    Reddy, K.J.

    1986-01-01

    The primary objective of this study was to develop a method of lowering the alkalinity of retorted shales and of reducing the solubility of toxic elements. The solubility relationships and mineral transformations associated with recarbonation of retorted shales were evaluated by determining the solubilities of different elements and by using X-ray diffraction analysis. An accurate method of measuring carbonate activity in shale extracts was developed. This method consisted of acidifying shale extracts with concentrated HCI. The evolved CO/sub 2/(g) was trapped in NaOH and titrated to pH 8.5. A computer speciation model was developed to calculate the equilibrium activities of different ions and the CO/sub 2/(g) partial pressure. Recarbonation dissolved silicates, restored the carbonate deficit, and lowered pH to near 8.5 when equilibrium with CaCO/sub 3/ and CO/sub 2/(g) partial pressure of approximately 10/sup -4.65/ atm. was attained. Furthermore, recarbonation decreased the solubilities of F, Ba, Cr, Sr, and Mo and lowered their concentrations in shale leachates, showing that recarbonation of spent shales can retard the movement of toxic elements into the groundwater. Tall wheatgrass (Agropyron elongatum) seeds placed in Lurgi shale without soil cover failed to germinate. On recarbonated Lurgi shale, plants grew normally without soil cover and accumulated normal levels of As, Se, Ba, B, Cu, Cd, Sr, and Ti. The results suggest that recarbonated retorted shales can be revegetated directly without a soil cover

  3. Seasonal timing of first rain storms affects rare plant population dynamics

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Levine, J.M.; McEachern, A.K.; Cowan, C.

    2011-01-01

    A major challenge in forecasting the ecological consequences of climate change is understanding the relative importance of changes to mean conditions vs. changes to discrete climatic events, such as storms, frosts, or droughts. Here we show that the first major storm of the growing season strongly influences the population dynamics of three rare and endangered annual plant species in a coastal California (USA) ecosystem. In a field experiment we used moisture barriers and water addition to manipulate the timing and temperature associated with first major rains of the season. The three focal species showed two- to fivefold variation in per capita population growth rates between the different storm treatments, comparable to variation found in a prior experiment imposing eightfold differences in season-long precipitation. Variation in germination was a major demographic driver of how two of three species responded to the first rains. For one of these species, the timing of the storm was the most critical determinant of its germination, while the other showed enhanced germination with colder storm temperatures. The role of temperature was further supported by laboratory trials showing enhanced germination in cooler treatments. Our work suggests that, because of species-specific cues for demographic transitions such as germination, changes to discrete climate events may be as, if not more, important than changes to season-long variables.

  4. Occurrence and transport of pharmaceuticals in a karst groundwater system affected by domestic wastewater treatment plants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Einsiedl, Florian; Radke, Michael; Maloszewski, Piotr

    2010-09-01

    The occurrence of two pharmaceuticals, ibuprofen and diclofenac, in a vulnerable karst groundwater system was investigated. The hydrogeology of the karst system was identified by collecting 3H samples in groundwater over 27 years and by performing tracer tests. The isotopes and tracer data were interpreted by mathematical modeling to estimate the mean transit time of water and to characterize the hydrogeological flow paths in the groundwater system. By this approach, a mean 3H transit time of 4.6 years for the fissured-porous karst aquifer was determined, whereas the fast flowing water in the conduit system showed a mean transit time of days. Both pharmaceuticals which infiltrated along sinkholes and small streams into the karst system were detected in concentrations of up to approximately 1 μg/L in effluent water of the wastewater treatment plants. Diclofenac was present in most samples collected from four springs discharging the karst groundwater to the rivers Altmühl and Anlauter in concentrations between 3.6 and 15.4 ng/L. In contrast, ibuprofen was rarely detected in groundwater. The results of this study suggest that both pharmaceuticals move into the fractured system of the karst system and go into storage. Thus dilution processes are the dominant control on the concentrations of both pharmaceuticals in the fractured system, whereas biodegradation is likely less important.

  5. Understanding plant-to-plant interactions for soil resources in multilayered Iberian dehesas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moreno, G.; Rolo, V.; Cubera, E.; López-Díaz, L.

    2009-04-01

    environment much more than understorey usually can, but tree characteristics often confer them a clear competitive advantage and they can strongly out-compete understorey. The net balance of positive-negative interactions varies with the age of trees: while the balance can favor grasses face to seedlings, the contrary can be expected when tree grows. Similarly, while shrubs could favor seedling recruitment, shrubs could affect negatively tree growth and productivity. These changes should be taken into account for defining dehesa structure and determining management practices in order to optimize the use of physical and chemical resources that are spatially and temporally patchy. From our results, it is described how generally holm-oak trees favor understorey forage production through a direct positive effect of shade and improved soil fertility (facilitation). The rooting system together the slow-growing attitude of many oak species could determine a low competitive potential of oaks with herbaceous layer. Its low competitiveness together with its capacity to thrive in poor soils make oaks genre very suitable for long-term agroforestry systems in Iberian Peninsula. However, although a certain complementary uses of soil resources seems occur for trees and native grasses (very distinct root system profile), the potential benefit of trees has a small actual facilitative effect because the competitive use of soil water by trees overrides its positive effects, especially under semi-arid conditions. As consequence, the net balance of trees on pasture yield is very variably with situations where pasture yield is widely increased in the vicinity of the trees and others where the contrary is found. Tree clearance practiced in dehesas affects positively the development of the understory pasture, but also the single tree functions which take advantage of the low tree density characteristic of dehesas. Tree roots access water through a large volume of soil resources (especially water

  6. Selenium bioavailability and uptake as affected by four different plants in a loamy clay soil with particular attention to mycorrhizae inoculated ryegrass.

    PubMed

    Munier-Lamy, C; Deneux-Mustin, S; Mustin, C; Merlet, D; Berthelin, J; Leyval, C

    2007-01-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate the influence of plant species, especially of their rhizosphere soil, and of inoculation with an arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungus on the bioavailability of selenium and its transfer in soil-plant systems. A pot experiment was performed with a loamy clay soil and four plant species: maize, lettuce, radish and ryegrass, the last one being inoculated or not with an arbuscular mycorrhizal fungus (Glomus mosseae). Plant biomass and Se concentration in shoots and roots were estimated at harvest. Se bioavailability in rhizosphere and unplanted soil was evaluated using sequential extractions. Plant biomass and selenium uptake varied with plant species. The quantity of rhizosphere soil also differed between plants and was not proportional to plant biomass. The highest plant biomass, Se concentration in plants, and soil to plant transfer factor were obtained with radish. The lowest Se transfer factors were obtained with ryegrass. For the latter, mycorrhizal inoculation did not significantly affect plant growth, but reduced selenium transfer from soil to plant by 30%. In unplanted soil after 65 days aging, more than 90% of added Se was water-extractable. On the contrary, Se concentration in water extracts of rhizosphere soil represented less than 1% and 20% of added Se for ryegrass and maize, respectively. No correlation was found between the water-extractable fraction and Se concentration in plants. The speciation of selenium in the water extracts indicated that selenate was reduced, may be under organic forms, in the rhizosphere soil. PMID:17544553

  7. How does altered precipitation and annual grass invasion affect plant N uptake in a native semi-arid shrub community?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mauritz, M.; Lipson, D.; Cleland, E. E.

    2012-12-01

    Climate change is expected to alter precipitation patterns, which will change the timing and amount of plant resources. Precipitation patterns determine water and nitrogen (N) availability, because water stimulates microbial N turnover and N transport. In order for plants to utilize water and N, they must coincide with the phenology and meet physiological requirements of the plant. As resource supply shifts, differences in species' ability to acquire resources will affect plant community composition. Semiarid ecosystems, such as shrublands in Southern California, are particularly sensitive to shifts in precipitation because they are severely water limited. This study takes advantage of the altered phenology and resource demands presented by invasive annual grasses in a native semiarid shrubland. The goal is to understand how altered precipitation patterns affect plant N uptake. Rainfall levels were manipulated to 50% and 150% of ambient levels. It is expected that higher rainfall levels promote annual grass invasion because grasses have higher water and N requirements and begin to grow earlier in the season than shrubs. A 15N tracer was added with the first rain event and plant samples were collected regularly to track the movement of N into the plants. Net soil N accumulation was determined using resin bags. Invasive grasses altered the timing and amount of N uptake but amount of rainfall had less effect on N distribution. 15N was detected sooner and at higher level in grasses than shrubs. 24hours after the first rain event 15N was detectable in grasses, 15N accumulated rapidly and peaked 2 months earlier than shrubs. Shrub 15N levels remained at pre-rain event levels for the first 2 months and began to increase at the beginning of spring, peak mid-spring and decline as the shrubs entered summer dormancy. One year later 15N levels in annual grass litter remained high, while 15N levels in shrubs returned to initial background levels as a result of resorption. 15N

  8. Metabonomics classifies pathways affected by bioactive compounds. Artificial neural network classification of NMR spectra of plant extracts.

    PubMed

    Ott, Karl-Heinz; Araníbar, Nelly; Singh, Bijay; Stockton, Gerald W

    2003-03-01

    The biochemical mode-of-action (MOA) for herbicides and other bioactive compounds can be rapidly and simultaneously classified by automated pattern recognition of the metabonome that is embodied in the 1H NMR spectrum of a crude plant extract. The ca. 300 herbicides that are used in agriculture today affect less than 30 different biochemical pathways. In this report, 19 of the most interesting MOAs were automatically classified. Corn (Zea mays) plants were treated with various herbicides such as imazethapyr, glyphosate, sethoxydim, and diuron, which represent various biochemical modes-of-action such as inhibition of specific enzymes (acetohydroxy acid synthase [AHAS], protoporphyrin IX oxidase [PROTOX], 5-enolpyruvylshikimate-3-phosphate synthase [EPSPS], acetyl CoA carboxylase [ACC-ase], etc.), or protein complexes (photosystems I and II), or major biological process such as oxidative phosphorylation, auxin transport, microtubule growth, and mitosis. Crude isolates from the treated plants were subjected to 1H NMR spectroscopy, and the spectra were classified by artificial neural network analysis to discriminate the herbicide modes-of-action. We demonstrate the use and refinement of the method, and present cross-validated assignments for the metabolite NMR profiles of over 400 plant isolates. The MOA screen also recognizes when a new mode-of-action is present, which is considered extremely important for the herbicide discovery process, and can be used to study deviations in the metabolism of compounds from a chemical synthesis program. The combination of NMR metabolite profiling and neural network classification is expected to be similarly relevant to other metabonomic profiling applications, such as in drug discovery. PMID:12590124

  9. A Locus in Drosophila sechellia Affecting Tolerance of a Host Plant Toxin

    PubMed Central

    Hungate, Eric A.; Earley, Eric J.; Boussy, Ian A.; Turissini, David A.; Ting, Chau-Ti; Moran, Jennifer R.; Wu, Mao-Lien; Wu, Chung-I; Jones, Corbin D.

    2013-01-01

    Many insects feed on only one or a few types of host. These host specialists often evolve a preference for chemical cues emanating from their host and develop mechanisms for circumventing their host’s defenses. Adaptations like these are central to evolutionary biology, yet our understanding of their genetics remains incomplete. Drosophila sechellia, an emerging model for the genetics of host specialization, is an island endemic that has adapted to chemical toxins present in the fruit of its host plant, Morinda citrifolia. Its sibling species, D. simulans, and many other Drosophila species do not tolerate these toxins and avoid the fruit. Earlier work found a region with a strong effect on tolerance to the major toxin, octanoic acid, on chromosome arm 3R. Using a novel assay, we narrowed this region to a small span near the centromere containing 18 genes, including three odorant binding proteins. It has been hypothesized that the evolution of host specialization is facilitated by genetic linkage between alleles contributing to host preference and alleles contributing to host usage, such as tolerance to secondary compounds. We tested this hypothesis by measuring the effect of this tolerance locus on host preference behavior. Our data were inconsistent with the linkage hypothesis, as flies bearing this tolerance region showed no increase in preference for media containing M. citrifolia toxins, which D. sechellia prefers. Thus, in contrast to some models for host preference, preference and tolerance are not tightly linked at this locus nor is increased tolerance per se sufficient to change preference. Our data are consistent with the previously proposed model that the evolution of D. sechellia as a M. citrifolia specialist occurred through a stepwise loss of aversion and gain of tolerance to M. citrifolia’s toxins. PMID:24037270

  10. A locus in Drosophila sechellia affecting tolerance of a host plant toxin.

    PubMed

    Hungate, Eric A; Earley, Eric J; Boussy, Ian A; Turissini, David A; Ting, Chau-Ti; Moran, Jennifer R; Wu, Mao-Lien; Wu, Chung-I; Jones, Corbin D

    2013-11-01

    Many insects feed on only one or a few types of host. These host specialists often evolve a preference for chemical cues emanating from their host and develop mechanisms for circumventing their host's defenses. Adaptations like these are central to evolutionary biology, yet our understanding of their genetics remains incomplete. Drosophila sechellia, an emerging model for the genetics of host specialization, is an island endemic that has adapted to chemical toxins present in the fruit of its host plant, Morinda citrifolia. Its sibling species, D. simulans, and many other Drosophila species do not tolerate these toxins and avoid the fruit. Earlier work found a region with a strong effect on tolerance to the major toxin, octanoic acid, on chromosome arm 3R. Using a novel assay, we narrowed this region to a small span near the centromere containing 18 genes, including three odorant binding proteins. It has been hypothesized that the evolution of host specialization is facilitated by genetic linkage between alleles contributing to host preference and alleles contributing to host usage, such as tolerance to secondary compounds. We tested this hypothesis by measuring the effect of this tolerance locus on host preference behavior. Our data were inconsistent with the linkage hypothesis, as flies bearing this tolerance region showed no increase in preference for media containing M. citrifolia toxins, which D. sechellia prefers. Thus, in contrast to some models for host preference, preference and tolerance are not tightly linked at this locus nor is increased tolerance per se sufficient to change preference. Our data are consistent with the previously proposed model that the evolution of D. sechellia as a M. citrifolia specialist occurred through a stepwise loss of aversion and gain of tolerance to M. citrifolia's toxins. PMID:24037270

  11. Changes of the soil environment affected by fly ash dumping site of the electric power plant

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weber, Jerzy; Gwizdz, Marta; Jamroz, Elzbieta; Debicka, Magdalena; Kocowicz, Andrzej

    2014-05-01

    In this study the effect of fly ash dumping site of the electric power plant on the surrounding soil environment was investigated. The fly ash dumping site collect wastes form brown coal combustion of Belchatow electric power station, central Poland. The dumping site is surrounding by forest, where pine trees overgrow Podzols derived from loose quartz sands. The soil profiles under study were located at a distance of 50, 100, 400 and 500 m from the dumping site, while control profiles were located 8 km away from the landfill. In all horizons of soil profiles the mpain hysico-chemical and chemical properties were determined. The humic substances were extracted from ectohumus horizons by Shnitzer's method, purified using XAD resin and freeze-dried. The fulvic acids were passed through a cation exchange column and freeze-dried. Optical density, elemental composition and atomic ratios were determined in the humic and fulvic acids. Organic carbon by KMnO4 oxidation was also determined in the organic soil horizons. The fly ash from the landfill characterized by high salinity and strong alkaline reaction (pH=10), which contributed significantly to the changes of the pH values in soils horizons. The alkalization of soils adjacent to the landfill was found, which manifested in increasing of pH values in the upper soil horizons. The impact of the landfill was also noted in the changes of the soil morphology of Podzols analysed. As a result of the alkalization, Bhs horizons have been converted into a Bs horizons. Leaching of low molecular humus fraction - typical for podzolization - has been minimized as a result of pH changes caused by the impact of the landfill, and originally occurring humic substances in the Bhs horizon (present in the control profiles) have been probably transported out of the soil profile and then into the groundwater.

  12. Volatiles induced by larvae of asian corn borer (Ostrinia furnacalis) in maize plants affect behavior of conspecific larvae and female adults

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Larvae of the Asian corn borer (ACB), Ostrinia furnacalis, (Guenée), feeding on maize (Zea mays L.) induced volatiles from the plants that affected orientation behaviors of ACB larvae and oviposition of ACB adult females. Nineteen volatile chemicals were identified from maize plants attacked by thir...

  13. Population size and relatedness affect fitness of a self-incompatible invasive plant.

    PubMed

    Elam, Diane R; Ridley, Caroline E; Goodell, Karen; Ellstrand, Norman C

    2007-01-01

    One of the lingering paradoxes in invasion biology is how founder populations of an introduced species are able to overcome the limitations of small size and, in a "reversal of fortune," proliferate in a new habitat. The transition from colonist to invader is especially enigmatic for self-incompatible species, which must find a mate to reproduce. In small populations, the inability to find a mate can result in the Allee effect, a positive relationship between individual fitness and population size or density. Theoretically, the Allee effect should be common in founder populations of self-incompatible colonizing species and may account for the high rate of failed introductions, but little supporting evidence exists. We created a field experiment to test whether the Allee effect affects the maternal fitness of a self-incompatible invasive species, wild radish (Raphanus sativus). We created populations of varying size and relatedness. We measured maternal fitness in terms of both fruit set per flower and seed number per fruit. We found that both population size and the level of genetic relatedness among individuals influence maternal reproductive success. Our results explicitly define an ecological genetic obstacle faced by populations of an exotic species on its way to becoming invasive. Such a mechanistic understanding of the invasions of species that require a mate can and should be exploited for both controlling current outbreaks and reducing their frequency in the future. PMID:17197422

  14. Late Holocene to present climatic and anthropogenic drivers affecting wetland plant communities, Florida Everglades, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bernhardt, C. E.; Willard, D. A.

    2011-12-01

    We synthesize the paleoecological results of dozens of sediment cores to evaluate the complex interactions of regional climate variability and anthropogenic modifications during the late Holocene affecting the development, stability, and resilience of the Florida Everglades wetlands. The Everglades is a mosaic of wetland types whose distributions are controlled by water depth, hydroperiod, fire, and substrate. External stressors could trigger shifts in the vegetation composition and change the community structure. Episodic severe periods of aridity during the late Holocene caused regional shifts in vegetation including the initiation and development of tree islands and sawgrass ridges, which became established during abrupt drought events. While the timing varies site to site, most droughts occurred during well-documented global climate events like the Medieval Climate Anomaly and the Little Ice Age. However, slough vegetation is more resilient to climate variability and quickly returns to its original composition after droughts. Twentieth century modification to the natural Everglades hydrology saw the distribution wetlands severely altered. The response was not homogeneous. Some communities were drowned by prolonged hydroperiods whereas other communities, such as marl prairies became drier. However, slough vegetation in the ridge and slough landscape did not respond to 20th century land use but instead has been sensitive to changes in precipitation associated with the North Atlantic Oscillation and the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation.

  15. Do non-native plant species affect the shape of productivity-diversity relationships?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Drake, J.M.; Cleland, E.E.; Horner-Devine, M. C.; Fleishman, E.; Bowles, C.; Smith, M.D.; Carney, K.; Emery, S.; Gramling, J.; Vandermast, D.B.; Grace, J.B.

    2008-01-01

    The relationship between ecosystem processes and species richness is an active area of research and speculation. Both theoretical and experimental studies have been conducted in numerous ecosystems. One finding of these studies is that the shape of the relationship between productivity and species richness varies considerably among ecosystems and at different spatial scales, though little is known about the relative importance of physical and biological mechanisms causing this variation. Moreover, despite widespread concern about changes in species' global distributions, it remains unclear if and how such large-scale changes may affect this relationship. We present a new conceptual model of how invasive species might modulate relationships between primary production and species richness. We tested this model using long-term data on relationships between aboveground net primary production and species richness in six North American terrestrial ecosystems. We show that primary production and abundance of non-native species are both significant predictors of species richness, though we fail to detect effects of invasion extent on the shapes of the relationship between species richness and primary production.

  16. Presence of pharmaceuticals in benthic fauna living in a small stream affected by effluent from a municipal sewage treatment plant.

    PubMed

    Grabicova, Katerina; Grabic, Roman; Blaha, Martin; Kumar, Vimal; Cerveny, Daniel; Fedorova, Ganna; Randak, Tomas

    2015-04-01

    Aquatic organisms can be affected not only via polluted water but also via their food. In the present study, we examined bioaccumulation of seventy pharmaceuticals in two benthic organisms, Hydropsyche sp. and Erpobdella octoculata in a small stream affected by the effluent from a sewage treatment plant (STP) in Prachatice (South Bohemia region, Czech Republic). Furthermore, water samples from similar locations were analyzed for all seventy pharmaceuticals. In water samples from a control locality situated upstream of the STP, ten of the seventy pharmaceuticals were found with average total concentrations of 200 ng L(-1). In water samples collected at STP-affected sites (downstream the STP's effluent), twenty-nine, twenty-seven and twenty-nine pharmaceuticals were determined at average total concentrations of 2000, 2100 and 1700 ng L(-1), respectively. Six of the seventy pharmaceuticals (azithromycin, citalopram, clarithromycin, clotrimazole, sertraline, and verapamil) were found in Hydropsyche. Four pharmaceuticals (clotrimazole, diclofenac, sertraline, and valsartan) were detected in Erpobdella. Using evaluation criterion bioconcentration factor (BCF) is higher than 2000 we can assign azithromycin and sertraline as bioaccumulative pharmaceuticals. Even pharmaceuticals present at low levels in water were found in benthic organisms at relatively high concentrations (up to 85 ng g(-1) w.w. for azithromycin). Consequently, the uptake of pharmaceuticals via the food web could be an important exposure pathway for the wild fish population. PMID:25283339

  17. Increased nitrogen deposition did not affect the composition and turnover of plant and microbial biomarkers in forest soil density fractions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Griepentrog, Marco; Bodé, Samuel; Boeckx, Pascal; Hagedorn, Frank; Wiesenberg, Guido L. B.; Schmidt, Michael W. I.

    2013-04-01

    Increased atmospheric nitrogen (N) deposition and elevated CO2 concentrations affect many forests and their ecosystem functions, including organic matter cycling in soils, the largest carbon pool of terrestrial ecosystems. However, it is still not clear how, and what the underlying mechanisms are. Specific molecules of plant and microbial origin (biomarkers) might respond differently to N deposition, depending on their internal N content. Microbial cell-wall-constituents with high-N content like amino sugars are reliable biomarkers to distinguish between fungal- and bacterial-derived organic residues. Individual lipids are plant-specific biomarkers that lack N in their molecular structure. Here, we tested the effects of elevated CO2 and increased N deposition on the dynamics of plant and microbial biomarkers by studying their composition and turnover in forest soil density fractions. Furthermore, we tested the hypothesis that these biomarkers respond differently to increased N deposition, depending on their internal N content. We used soil samples from a 4-year elevated CO2 and N deposition experiment in model forest ecosystems (open-top chambers), that were fumigated with ambient and 13C-depleted CO2 and treated with two levels of 15N-labeled fertilizer. Bulk soil was separated into free light fraction, occluded light fraction and heavy fraction by density fractionation and ultrasonic dispersion. The heavy fraction was further particle-size fractionated with 20 μm as a cut-off. We determined carbon and N concentrations and their isotopic compositions (δ13C, δ15N) within bulk soil and density fractions. Therein, we extracted and quantified individual amino sugars and lipids and conducted compound-specific stable-isotope-analysis using GC- and LC-IRMS. Results show that amino sugars were mainly stabilized in association with soil minerals. Especially bacterial amino sugars were preferentially associated with soil minerals, exemplified by a consistent decrease

  18. Patchy Distributions of Competitors Affect the Growth of a Clonal Plant When the Competitor Density Is High

    PubMed Central

    Xue, Wei; Huang, Lin; Dong, Bi-Cheng; Zhang, Ming-Xiang; Yu, Fei-Hai

    2013-01-01

    Environments are patchy in not only abiotic factors but also biotic ones. Many studies have examined effects of spatial heterogeneity in abiotic factors such as light, water and nutrients on the growth of clonal plants, but few have tested those in biotic factors. We conducted a greenhouse experiment to examine how patchy distributions of competitors affect the growth of a rhizomatous wetland plant Bolboschoenus planiculmis and whether such effects depend on the density of the competitors. We grew one ramet of B. planiculmis in the center of each of the experimental boxes without competitors (Schoenoplectus triqueter), with a homogeneous distribution of the competitors of low or high density, and with a patchy distribution of the competitors of low or high density. The presence of competitors markedly decreased the growth (biomass, number of ramets, number of tubers and rhizome length) of the B. planiculmis clones. When the density of the competitors was low, the growth of B. planiculmis did not differ significantly between the competitor patches and competitor-free patches. However, when the density of the competitors was high, the growth of B. planiculmis was significantly higher in the competitor-free patches than in the competitor patches. Therefore, B. planiculmis can respond to patchy distributions of competitors by placing more ramets in competition-free patches when the density of competitors is high, but cannot do so when the density of competitors is low. PMID:24205165

  19. Do selenium hyperaccumulators affect selenium speciation in neighboring plants and soil? An X-Ray Microprobe Analysis.

    PubMed

    El Mehdawi, Ali F; Lindblom, Stormy D; Cappa, Jennifer J; Fakra, Sirine C; Pilon-Smits, Elizabeth A H

    2015-01-01

    Neighbors of Se hyperaccumulators Stanleya pinnata and Astragalus bisulcatus were found earlier to have elevated Se levels. Here we investigate whether Se hyperaccumulators affect Se localization and speciation in surrounding soil and neighboring plants. X-ray fluorescence mapping and X-ray absorption near-edge structure spectroscopy were used to analyze Se localization and speciation in leaves of Artemisia ludoviciana, Symphyotrichum ericoides and Chenopodium album growing next to Se hyperaccumulators or non-accumulators at a seleniferous site. Regardless of neighbors, A. ludoviciana, S. ericoides and C. album accumulated predominantly (73-92%) reduced selenocompounds with XANES spectra similar to the C-Se-C compounds selenomethionine and methyl-selenocysteine. Preliminary data indicate that the largest Se fraction (65-75%), both in soil next to hyperaccumulator S. pinnata and next to nonaccumulator species was reduced Se with spectra similar to C-Se-C standards. These same C-Se-C forms are found in hyperaccumulators. Thus, hyperaccumulator litter may be a source of organic soil Se, but soil microorganisms may also contribute. These findings are relevant for phytoremediation and biofortification since organic Se is more readily accumulated by plants, and more effective for dietary Se supplementation. PMID:26030363

  20. Red:far-red light conditions affect the emission of volatile organic compounds from barley (Hordeum vulgare), leading to altered biomass allocation in neighbouring plants

    PubMed Central

    Kegge, Wouter; Ninkovic, Velemir; Glinwood, Robert; Welschen, Rob A. M.; Voesenek, Laurentius A. C. J.; Pierik, Ronald

    2015-01-01

    Background and Aims Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) play various roles in plant–plant interactions, and constitutively produced VOCs might act as a cue to sense neighbouring plants. Previous studies have shown that VOCs emitted from the barley (Hordeum vulgare) cultivar ‘Alva’ cause changes in biomass allocation in plants of the cultivar ‘Kara’. Other studies have shown that shading and the low red:far-red (R:FR) conditions that prevail at high plant densities can reduce the quantity and alter the composition of the VOCs emitted by Arabidopsis thaliana, but whether this affects plant–plant signalling remains unknown. This study therefore examines the effects of far-red light enrichment on VOC emissions and plant–plant signalling between ‘Alva’ and ‘Kara’. Methods The proximity of neighbouring plants was mimicked by supplemental far-red light treatment of VOC emitter plants of barley grown in growth chambers. Volatiles emitted by ‘Alva’ under control and far-red light-enriched conditions were analysed using gas chromatography–mass spectrometry (GC-MS). ‘Kara’ plants were exposed to the VOC blend emitted by the ‘Alva’ plants that were subjected to either of the light treatments. Dry matter partitioning, leaf area, stem and total root length were determined for ‘Kara’ plants exposed to ‘Alva’ VOCs, and also for ‘Alva’ plants exposed to either control or far-red-enriched light treatments. Key Results Total VOC emissions by ‘Alva’ were reduced under low R:FR conditions compared with control light conditions, although individual volatile compounds were found to be either suppressed, induced or not affected by R:FR. The altered composition of the VOC blend emitted by ‘Alva’ plants exposed to low R:FR was found to affect carbon allocation in receiver plants of ‘Kara’. Conclusions The results indicate that changes in R:FR light conditions influence the emissions of VOCs in barley, and that these altered emissions

  1. Zinc treatment increases the titre of ‘Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus’ in Huanglongbing-affected citrus plants while affecting the bacterial microbiomes

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Huanglongbing (HLB)-affected citrus often display zinc deficiency symptoms. In this study, supplemental zinc was applied to citrus to determine its effect on Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus (Las) titer, HLB symptoms, and leaf microbiome. HLB-affected citrus were treated with various amounts of zi...

  2. Zinc treatment increases the titer of ‘Candidatus’ Liberibacter asiaticus’ in HLB-affected citrus plants while affecting the bacterial microbiomes

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Huanglongbing (HLB)-affected citrus often display zinc deficiency symptoms. In this study, supplemental zinc was applied to citrus to determine its effect on Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus (Las) titer, HLB symptoms, and leaf microbiome. HLB-affected citrus were treated with various amounts of zi...

  3. Abiotic stresses affect differently the intron splicing and expression of chloroplast genes in coffee plants (Coffea arabica) and rice (Oryza sativa).

    PubMed

    Nguyen Dinh, Sy; Sai, Than Zaw Tun; Nawaz, Ghazala; Lee, Kwanuk; Kang, Hunseung

    2016-08-20

    Despite the increasing understanding of the regulation of chloroplast gene expression in plants, the importance of intron splicing and processing of chloroplast RNA transcripts under stress conditions is largely unknown. Here, to understand how abiotic stresses affect the intron splicing and expression patterns of chloroplast genes in dicots and monocots, we carried out a comprehensive analysis of the intron splicing and expression patterns of chloroplast genes in the coffee plant (Coffea arabica) as a dicot and rice (Oryza sativa) as a monocot under abiotic stresses, including drought, cold, or combined drought and heat stresses. The photosynthetic activity of both coffee plants and rice seedlings was significantly reduced under all stress conditions tested. Analysis of the transcript levels of chloroplast genes revealed that the splicing of tRNAs and mRNAs in coffee plants and rice seedlings were significantly affected by abiotic stresses. Notably, abiotic stresses affected differently the splicing of chloroplast tRNAs and mRNAs in coffee plants and rice seedlings. The transcript levels of most chloroplast genes were markedly downregulated in both coffee plants and rice seedlings upon stress treatment. Taken together, these results suggest that coffee and rice plants respond to abiotic stresses via regulating the intron splicing and expression of different sets of chloroplast genes. PMID:27448724

  4. Oxidative damage of workers in secondary metal recovery plants affected by smoking status and joining the smelting work.

    PubMed

    Chia, Taipau; Hsu, Ching Yi; Chen, Hsiu Ling

    2008-04-01

    In Taiwan, secondary copper smelters and zinc recovery plants primarily utilize recovering metal from scrap and dross, and handles mostly fly ash and slag with high temperature to produce ZnO from the iron and steel industry. The materials may contain organic impurities, such as plastic and organic chloride chemicals, and amounts of polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and polychlorinated dibenzofurans (PCDD/Fs) are produced during the smelting process. Therefore, secondary metal recovery industries are major emission sources of PCDD/Fs, which may have been demonstrated to elicit oxidative stress and to involve the production of plasma malondialdehyde (MDA). Many studies have also indicated that the intake of antioxidants, smoking, age and exposure to environmental pollutants may be implicated to DNA damage or lipid peroxidation. This study therefore aims to elucidate the roles of occupational exposure like joining the smelting work, age, smoking and alcohol status, and antioxidant intake on oxidative damage in secondary metal recovery workers in Taiwan. 73 workers were recruited from 2 secondary metal recovery plants. The analysis of 8-hydroxydeoxyguanosine (8-OH-dG) in urine, DNA strand breakage (comet assay) and lipid peroxidation (MDA) in blood samples were completed for all of the workers. The results showed that the older subjects exhibited significantly lower levels of 8-OH-dG and MDA than younger subjects. Our investigation also showed that working departments were in related to plasma MDA and DNA strand breakage levels of nonsmokers, however, the observation become negligible in smokers. And it is implicated that cigarette type might affect 8-OH-dG levels in secondary metal recovery workers. Since, adding to results above, the MDA level in production workers was significantly higher than those in managerial departments, it is important for the employers to make efforts on improving occupational environments or serving protective equipments to protect workers

  5. Key regulatory drivers affecting shipments of mixed transuranic waste from Los Alamos National Laboratory to the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant

    SciTech Connect

    Schumann, P.B.; Bacigalupa, G.A.; Kosiewicz, S.T.; Sinkule, B.J.

    1997-02-01

    A number of key regulatory drivers affect the nature, scope, and timing of Los Alamos National Laboratory`s (LANL`s) plans for mixed transuranic (MTRU) waste shipments to the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP), which are planned to commence as soon as possible following WIPP`s currently anticipated November, 1997 opening date. This paper provides an overview of some of the key drivers at LANL, particularly emphasizing those associated with the hazardous waste component of LANL`s MTRU waste (MTRU, like any mixed waste, contains both a radioactive and a hazardous waste component). The key drivers discussed here derive from the federal Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) and its amendments, including the Federal Facility Compliance Act (FFCAU), and from the New Mexico Hazardous Waste Act (NMHWA). These statutory provisions are enforced through three major mechanisms: facility RCRA permits; the New Mexico Hazardous Waste Management Regulations, set forth in the New Mexico Administrative Code, Title 20, Chapter 4, Part 1: and compliance orders issued to enforce these requirements. General requirements in all three categories will apply to MTRU waste management and characterization activities at both WIPP and LANL. In addition, LANL is subject to facility-specific requirements in its RCRA hazardous waste facility permit, permit conditions as currently proposed in RCRA Part B permit applications presently being reviewed by the New Mexico Environment Department (NNED), and facility-specific compliance orders related to MTRU waste management. Likewise, permitting and compliance-related requirements specific to WIPP indirectly affect LANL`s characterization, packaging, record-keeping, and transportation requirements for MTRU waste. LANL must comply with this evolving set of regulatory requirements to begin shipments of MTRU waste to WIPP in a timely fashion.

  6. Consuming functional foods enriched with plant sterol or stanol esters for 85 weeks does not affect neurocognitive functioning or mood in statin-treated hypercholesterolemic individuals.

    PubMed

    Schiepers, Olga J G; de Groot, Renate H M; van Boxtel, Martin P J; Jolles, Jelle; de Jong, Ariënne; Lütjohann, Dieter; Plat, Jogchum; Mensink, Ronald P

    2009-07-01

    Recent animal and human studies have shown that plant sterols and stanols, which are used as functional food ingredients to lower increased LDL cholesterol concentrations, pass the blood-brain barrier. Whether this affects neurocognitive functioning and mental well-being in humans has, to our knowledge, never been investigated. The aim of the present study was therefore to examine the effects of long-term plant sterol or stanol consumption on neurocognitive functioning and mood in a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled dietary intervention trial. To this end, hypercholesterolemic individuals, aged 43-69 y, receiving stable statin treatment were randomly assigned to an 85-wk supplementation with margarines enriched with plant sterol esters (2.5 g/d), plant stanol esters (2.5 g/d), or placebo. At baseline and at the end of the intervention period, all participants underwent a cognitive assessment. In addition, subjective cognitive functioning and mood were assessed by means of questionnaires (Cognitive Failure Questionnaire and depression subscale of the Symptom Checklist 90, respectively). Long-term supplementation with plant sterol or stanol esters did not affect cognitive performance (memory, simple information processing speed, complex information processing speed, Letter-Digit Substitution test performance), subjective cognitive functioning, or mood. In conclusion, the present results indicate that long-term use of plant sterols or stanols at recommended intakes of 2.5 g/d does not affect neurocognitive functioning or mood in hypercholesterolemic individuals receiving statin treatment. PMID:19458031

  7. Biochar amendment before or after composting affects compost quality and N losses, but not P plant uptake.

    PubMed

    Vandecasteele, Bart; Sinicco, Tania; D'Hose, Tommy; Vanden Nest, Thijs; Mondini, Claudio

    2016-03-01

    We investigated the use of biochar (10% on a dry weight basis) to improve the composting process and/or the compost quality by adding it to either the feedstock mixture or the mature compost. The addition of biochar to the feedstocks was essayed in a full scale trial using a mixture of green waste and the organic fraction of municipal solid waste. Addition of biochar to mature compost was performed in a medium scale experiment. The use of biochar, even in small amounts, changed the composting process and the properties of the end products. However these effects depended on the time of application. We observed a faster decomposition in the bio-oxidative phase and lower greenhouse gas emissions when biochar was added at the beginning of the composting process, and a reduction in readily available P when biochar was applied during compost storage. Biochar as a means to increase the C content of the compost was only effective during compost storage. The P fertilizer replacement value of the compost with and without biochar was tested in a plant trial with annual ryegrass. While there was a clear effect on readily available P concentrations in the compost, adding biochar to the feedstock or the compost did not affect the P fertilizer replacement value. PMID:26708650

  8. Factors affecting plant diversity during post-fire recovery and succession of mediterranean-climate shrublands in California, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Keeley, J.E.; Fotheringham, C.J.; Baer-Keeley, M.

    2005-01-01

    Plant community diversity, measured as species richness, is typically highest in the early post-fire years in California shrublands. However, this generalization is overly simplistic and the present study demonstrates that diversity is determined by a complex of temporal and spatial effects. Ninety sites distributed across southern California were studied for 5 years after a series of fires. Characteristics of the disturbance event, in this case fire severity, can alter post-fire diversity, both decreasing and increasing diversity, depending on life form. Spatial variability in resource availability is an important factor explaining patterns of diversity, and there is a complex interaction between landscape features and life form. Temporal variability in resource availability affects diversity, and the diversity peak in the immediate post-fire year (or two) appears to be driven by factors different from subsequent diversity peaks. Early post-fire diversity is influenced by life-history specialization, illustrated by species that spend the bulk of their life cycle as a dormant seed bank, which is then triggered to germinate by fire. Resource fluctuations, precipitation in particular, may be associated with subsequent post-fire diversity peaks. These later peaks in diversity comprise a flora that is compositionally different from the immediate post-fire flora, and their presence may be due to mass effects from population expansion of local populations in adjacent burned areas. ?? 2005 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  9. Gibberellins regulate the stem elongation rate without affecting the mature plant height of a quick development mutant of winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L.).

    PubMed

    Zhang, Ning; Xie, Yong-Dun; Guo, Hui-Jun; Zhao, Lin-Shu; Xiong, Hong-Chun; Gu, Jia-Yu; Li, Jun-Hui; Kong, Fu-Quan; Sui, Li; Zhao, Zi-Wei; Zhao, Shi-Rong; Liu, Lu-Xiang

    2016-10-01

    Gibberellin (GA) is essential for determining plant height. Alteration of GA content or GA signaling results in a dwarf or slender phenotype. Here, we characterized a novel wheat mutant, quick development (qd), in which GA regulates stem elongation but does not affect mature plant height. qd and wild-type plants did not exhibit phenotypic differences at the seedling stage. From jointing to heading stage, qd plants were taller than wild-type plants due to elongated cells. However, wild-type and qd plants were the same height at heading. Unlike wild-type plants, qd plants were sensitive to exogenous GA due to mutation of Rht-B1. With continuous GA stimulation, qd seedlings and adult plants were taller than wild-type. Thus, the GA content of qd plants might differ from that of wild-type during the growth process. Analysis of GA biosynthetic gene expression verified this hypothesis and showed that TaKAO, which is involved in catalyzing the early steps of GA biosynthesis, was differentially expressed in qd plants compared with wild-type. The bioactive GA associated gene TaGA20ox was downregulated in qd plants during the late growth stages. Measurements of endogenous GA content were consistent with the gene-expression analysis results. Consistent with the GA content variation, the first three basal internodes were longer and the last two internodes were shorter in qd than in wild-type plants. The qd mutant might be useful in dissecting the mechanism by which GA regulates stem-growing process, and it may be serve as a GA responsive semi-dwarf germplasm in breeding programs. PMID:27317908

  10. Plant Host Species and Geographic Distance Affect the Structure of Aboveground Fungal Symbiont Communities, and Environmental Filtering Affects Belowground Communities in a Coastal Dune Ecosystem.

    PubMed

    David, Aaron S; Seabloom, Eric W; May, Georgiana

    2016-05-01

    Microbial symbionts inhabit tissues of all plants and animals. Their community composition depends largely on two ecological processes: (1) filtering by abiotic conditions and host species determining the environments that symbionts are able to colonize and (2) dispersal-limitation determining the pool of symbionts available to colonize a given host and community spatial structure. In plants, the above- and belowground tissues represent such distinct habitats for symbionts that we expect different effects of filtering and spatial structuring on their symbiont communities. In this study, we characterized above- and belowground communities of fungal endophytes--fungi living asymptomatically within plants--to understand the contributions of filtering and spatial structure to endophyte community composition. We used a culture-based approach to characterize endophytes growing in leaves and roots of three species of coastal beachgrasses in dunes of the USA Pacific Northwest. For leaves, endophyte isolation frequency and OTU richness depended primarily on plant host species. In comparison, for roots, both isolation frequency and OTU richness increased from the nutrient-poor front of the dune to the higher-nutrient backdune. Endophyte community composition in leaves exhibited a distance-decay relationship across the region. In a laboratory assay, faster growth rates and lower spore production were more often associated with leaf- than root-inhabiting endophytes. Overall, our results reveal a greater importance of biotic filtering by host species and dispersal-limitation over regional geographic distances for aboveground leaf endophyte communities and stronger effects of abiotic environmental filtering and locally patchy distributions for belowground root endophyte communities. PMID:26626912

  11. A trial of production of the plant-derived high-value protein in a plant factory: photosynthetic photon fluxes affect the accumulation of recombinant miraculin in transgenic tomato fruits.

    PubMed

    Kato, Kazuhisa; Maruyama, Shinichiro; Hirai, Tadayoshi; Hiwasa-Tanase, Kyoko; Mizoguchi, Tsuyoshi; Goto, Eiji; Ezura, Hiroshi

    2011-08-01

    One of the ultimate goals of plant science is to test a hypothesis obtained by basic science and to apply it to agriculture and industry. A plant factory is one of the ideal systems for this trial. Environmental factors affect both plant yield and the accumulation of recombinant proteins for industrial applications within transgenic plants. However, there have been few reports studying plant productivity for recombinant protein in closed cultivation systems called plant factories. To investigate the effects of photosynthetic photon flux (PPF) on tomato fruit yield and the accumulation of recombinant miraculin, a taste-modifying glycoprotein, in transgenic tomato fruits, plants were cultivated at various PPFs from 100 to 400 (µmol m(-2) s(-)1) in a plant factory. Miraculin production per unit of energy used was highest at PPF100, although miraculin production per unit area was highest at PPF300. The commercial productivity of recombinant miraculin in transgenic tomato fruits largely depended on light conditions in the plant factory. Our trial will be useful to consider the trade-offs between the profits from production of high-value materials in plants and the costs of electricity. PMID:21791976

  12. Reproductive allocation in plants as affected by elevated carbon dioxide and other environmental changes: a synthesis using meta-analysis and graphical vector analysis.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xianzhong; Taub, Daniel R; Jablonski, Leanne M

    2015-04-01

    Reproduction is an important life history trait that strongly affects dynamics of plant populations. Although it has been well documented that elevated carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere greatly enhances biomass production in plants, the overall effect of elevated CO2 on reproductive allocation (RA), i.e., the proportion of biomass allocated to reproductive structures, is little understood. We combined meta-analysis with graphical vector analysis to examine the overall effect of elevated CO2 on RA and how other environmental factors, such as low nutrients, drought and elevated atmospheric ozone (O3), interacted with elevated CO2 in affecting RA in herbaceous plants. Averaged across all species of different functional groups and environmental conditions, elevated CO2 had little effect on RA (-0.9%). RA in plants of different reproductive strategies and functional groups, however, differed in response to elevated CO2. For example, RA in iteroparous wild species decreased by 8%, while RA in iteroparous crops increased significantly (+14%) at elevated CO2. RA was unaffected by CO2 in plants grown with no stress or in low-nutrient soils. RA decreased at elevated CO2 and elevated O3, but increased in response to elevated CO2 in drought-stressed plants, suggesting that elevated CO2 could ameliorate the adverse effect of drought on crop production to some extent. Our results demonstrate that elevated CO2 and other global environmental changes have the potential to greatly alter plant community composition through differential effects on RA of different plant species and thus affect the dynamics of natural and agricultural ecosystems in the future. PMID:25537120

  13. Plant phenolic acids affect the virulence of Pectobacterium aroidearum and P. carotovorum ssp. brasiliense via quorum sensing regulation.

    PubMed

    Joshi, Janak Raj; Burdman, Saul; Lipsky, Alexander; Yariv, Shaked; Yedidia, Iris

    2016-05-01

    Several studies have reported effects of the plant phenolic acids cinnamic acid (CA) and salicylic acid (SA) on the virulence of soft rot enterobacteria. However, the mechanisms involved in these processes are not yet fully understood. Here, we investigated whether CA and SA interfere with the quorum sensing (QS) system of two Pectobacterium species, P. aroidearum and P. carotovorum ssp. brasiliense, which are known to produce N-acyl-homoserine lactone (AHL) QS signals. Our results clearly indicate that both phenolic compounds affect the QS machinery of the two species, consequently altering the expression of bacterial virulence factors. Although, in control treatments, the expression of QS-related genes increased over time, the exposure of bacteria to non-lethal concentrations of CA or SA inhibited the expression of QS genes, including expI, expR, PC1_1442 (luxR transcriptional regulator) and luxS (a component of the AI-2 system). Other virulence genes known to be regulated by the QS system, such as pecS, pel, peh and yheO, were also down-regulated relative to the control. In agreement with the low levels of expression of expI and expR, CA and SA also reduced the level of the AHL signal. The effects of CA and SA on AHL signalling were confirmed in compensation assays, in which exogenous application of N-(β-ketocaproyl)-l-homoserine lactone (eAHL) led to the recovery of the reduction in virulence caused by the two phenolic acids. Collectively, the results of gene expression studies, bioluminescence assays, virulence assays and compensation assays with eAHL clearly support a mechanism by which CA and SA interfere with Pectobacterium virulence via the QS machinery. PMID:26177258

  14. Consequences of the trans-Atlantic slave trade on medicinal plant selection: plant use for cultural bound syndromes affecting children in Suriname and Western Africa.

    PubMed

    Vossen, Tessa; Towns, Alexandra; Ruysschaert, Sofie; Quiroz, Diana; van Andel, Tinde

    2014-01-01

    Folk perceptions of health and illness include cultural bound syndromes (CBS), ailments generally confined to certain cultural groups or geographic regions and often treated with medicinal plants. Our aim was to compare definitions and plant use for CBS regarding child health in the context of the largest migration in recent human history: the trans-Atlantic slave trade. We compared definitions of four CBS (walk early, evil eye, atita and fontanels) and associated plant use among three Afro-Surinamese populations and their African ancestor groups in Ghana, Bénin and Gabon. We expected plant use to be similar on species level, and assumed the majority to be weedy or domesticated species, as these occur on both continents and were probably recognized by enslaved Africans. Data were obtained by identifying plants mentioned during interviews with local women from the six different populations. To analyse differences and similarities in plant use we used Detrended Component Analysis (DCA) and a Wald Chi-square test. Definitions of the four cultural bound syndromes were roughly the same on both continents. In total, 324 plant species were used. There was little overlap between Suriname and Africa: 15 species were used on two continents, of which seven species were used for the same CBS. Correspondence on family level was much higher. Surinamese populations used significantly more weedy species than Africans, but equal percentages of domesticated plants. Our data indicate that Afro-Surinamers have searched for similar plants to treat their CBS as they remembered from Africa. In some cases, they have found the same species, but they had to reinvent the largest part of their herbal pharmacopeia to treat their CBS using known plant families or trying out new species. Ideas on health and illness appear to be more resilient than the use of plants to treat them. PMID:25372485

  15. Consequences of the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade on Medicinal Plant Selection: Plant Use for Cultural Bound Syndromes Affecting Children in Suriname and Western Africa

    PubMed Central

    Vossen, Tessa; Towns, Alexandra; Ruysschaert, Sofie; Quiroz, Diana; van Andel, Tinde

    2014-01-01

    Folk perceptions of health and illness include cultural bound syndromes (CBS), ailments generally confined to certain cultural groups or geographic regions and often treated with medicinal plants. Our aim was to compare definitions and plant use for CBS regarding child health in the context of the largest migration in recent human history: the trans-Atlantic slave trade. We compared definitions of four CBS (walk early, evil eye, atita and fontanels) and associated plant use among three Afro-Surinamese populations and their African ancestor groups in Ghana, Bénin and Gabon. We expected plant use to be similar on species level, and assumed the majority to be weedy or domesticated species, as these occur on both continents and were probably recognized by enslaved Africans. Data were obtained by identifying plants mentioned during interviews with local women from the six different populations. To analyse differences and similarities in plant use we used Detrended Component Analysis (DCA) and a Wald Chi-square test. Definitions of the four cultural bound syndromes were roughly the same on both continents. In total, 324 plant species were used. There was little overlap between Suriname and Africa: 15 species were used on two continents, of which seven species were used for the same CBS. Correspondence on family level was much higher. Surinamese populations used significantly more weedy species than Africans, but equal percentages of domesticated plants. Our data indicate that Afro-Surinamers have searched for similar plants to treat their CBS as they remembered from Africa. In some cases, they have found the same species, but they had to reinvent the largest part of their herbal pharmacopeia to treat their CBS using known plant families or trying out new species. Ideas on health and illness appear to be more resilient than the use of plants to treat them. PMID:25372485

  16. ABA is an essential signal for plant resistance to pathogens affecting JA biosynthesis and the activation of plant defenses in Arabidopsis

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Plant defense responses have been studied through a limited number of models that may have constrained our view of plant-pathogen interactions. Discovery of new defense mechanisms should be favored by broadening the range of pathogens under study. With this aim, Arabidopsis defense response to the ‘...

  17. Nickel tolerance of serpentine and non-serpentine Knautia arvensis plants as affected by arbuscular mycorrhizal symbiosis.

    PubMed

    Doubková, Pavla; Sudová, Radka

    2014-04-01

    Serpentine soils have naturally elevated concentrations of certain heavy metals, including nickel. This study addressed the role of plant origin (serpentine vs. non-serpentine) and symbiosis with arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) in plant Ni tolerance. A semi-hydroponic experiment involving three levels of Ni and serpentine and non-serpentine AMF isolates and populations of a model plant species (Knautia arvensis) revealed considerable negative effects of elevated Ni availability on both plant and fungal performance. Plant growth response to Ni was independent of edaphic origin; however, higher Ni tolerance of serpentine plants was indicated by a smaller decline in the concentrations of photosynthetic pigments and restricted root-to-shoot Ni translocation. Serpentine plants also retained relatively more Mg in their roots, resulting in a higher shoot Ca/Mg ratio. AMF inoculation, especially with the non-serpentine isolate, further aggravated Ni toxicity to host plants. Therefore, AMF do not appear to be involved in Ni tolerance of serpentine K. arvensis plants. PMID:24136374

  18. Experimental defoliation affects male but not female reproductive performance of the tropical monoecious plant Croton suberosus (Euphorbiaceae)

    PubMed Central

    Narbona, Eduardo; Dirzo, Rodolfo

    2010-01-01

    Background and Aims Monoecious plants have the capacity to allocate resources separately to male and female functions more easily than hermaphrodites. This can be advantageous against environmental stresses such as leaf herbivory. However, studies showing effects of herbivory on male and female functions and on the interaction with the plant's pollinators are limited, particularly in tropical plants. Here, the effects of experimental defoliation were examined in the monoecious shrub Croton suberosus (Euphorbiaceae), a wasp-pollinated species from a Mexican tropical dry forest. Methods Three defoliation treatments were applied: 0 % (control), 25 % (low) or 75 % (high) of plant leaf area removed. Vegetative (production of new leaves) and reproductive (pistillate and staminate flower production, pollen viability, nectar production, fruit set, and seed set) performance variables, and the abundance and activity of floral visitors were examined. Key Results Defoliated plants overcompensated for tissue loss by producing more new leaves than control plants. Production of staminate flowers gradually decreased with increasing defoliation and the floral sex ratio (staminate : pistillate flowers) was drastically reduced in high-defoliation plants. In contrast, female reproductive performance (pistillate flower production, fruit set and seed set) and pollinator visitation and abundance were not impacted by defoliation. Conclusions The asymmetrical effects of defoliation on male and female traits of C. suberosus may be due to the temporal and spatial flexibility in the allocation of resources deployed by monoecious plants. We posit that this helps to maintain the plant's pollination success in the face of leaf herbivory stress. PMID:20519239

  19. Mycorrhizal symbiosis in leeks increases plant growth under low phosphorus and affects the levels of specific flavonoid glycosides

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Introduction- Mycorrhizae symbiosis is a universal phenomenon in nature that promotes plant growth and food quality in most plants, especially, under phosphorus deficiency and water stress. Objective- The objective of this study was to assess the effects of mycorrhizal symbiosis on changes in the le...

  20. WHEAT LEAF RUST SEVERITY AS AFFECTED BY PLANT DENSITY AND SPECIES PROPORTION IN SIMPLE COMMUNITIES OF WHEAT AND WILD OATS

    EPA Science Inventory

    While it is generally accepted that dense stands of plants exacerbate epidermics caused by foliar pathogens, there is little experimental evidence to support this view. We grew model plant communities consisting of wheat and wild oats at different densities and proportions and ex...

  1. Salinity and Alkaline pH of Irrigation Water Affect Marigold Plants: I. Growth and Shoot Dry Weight Partitioning

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Marigold, is one of the most popular annual ornamental plants. Both the short-statured cultivars (Tagetes patula L.) and the taller cultivars (T. erecta L.) are used as container plants, in landscape and garden settings. Tagetes erecta varieties make excellent cut and dried flowers for the florist...

  2. WHEAT LEAF RUST SEVERITY AS AFFECTED BY PLANT DENSITY AND SPECIES PROPORTION IN SIMPLE COMMUNITIES OF WHEAT AND WILD OATS

    EPA Science Inventory

    While it is generally accepted that dense stands of plants exacerbate epidemics caused by foliar pathogens, there is little experimental evidence to support this view. We grew model plant communities consisting of wheat and wild oats at different densities and proportions and exp...

  3. Parameters affecting the efficient delivery of mesoporous silica nanoparticle materials and gold nanorods into plant tissues by the biolistic method.

    PubMed

    Martin-Ortigosa, Susana; Valenstein, Justin S; Sun, Wei; Moeller, Lorena; Fang, Ning; Trewyn, Brian G; Lin, Victor S-Y; Wang, Kan

    2012-02-01

    Applying nanotechnology to plant science requires efficient systems for the delivery of nanoparticles (NPs) to plant cells and tissues. The presence of a cell wall in plant cells makes it challenging to extend the NP delivery methods available for animal research. In this work, research is presented which establishes an efficient NP delivery system for plant tissues using the biolistic method. It is shown that the biolistic delivery of mesoporous silica nanoparticle (MSN) materials can be improved by increasing the density of MSNs through gold plating. Additionally, a DNA-coating protocol is used based on calcium chloride and spermidine for MSN and gold nanorods to enhance the NP-mediated DNA delivery. Furthermore, the drastic improvement of NP delivery is demonstrated when the particles are combined with 0.6 μm gold particles during bombardment. The methodology described provides a system for the efficient delivery of NPs into plant cells using the biolistic method. PMID:22174078

  4. Phosphorus and iron deficiencies induce a metabolic reprogramming and affect the exudation traits of the woody plant Fragaria×ananassa.

    PubMed

    Valentinuzzi, Fabio; Pii, Youry; Vigani, Gianpiero; Lehmann, Martin; Cesco, Stefano; Mimmo, Tanja

    2015-10-01

    Strawberries are a very popular fruit among berries, for both their commercial and economic importance, but especially for their beneficial effects for human health. However, their bioactive compound content is strictly related to the nutritional status of the plant and might be affected if nutritional disorders (e.g. Fe or P shortage) occur. To overcome nutrient shortages, plants evolved different mechanisms, which often involve the release of root exudates. The biochemical and molecular mechanisms underlying root exudation and its regulation are as yet still poorly known, in particular in woody crop species. The aim of this work was therefore to characterize the pattern of root exudation of strawberry plants grown in either P or Fe deficiency, by investigating metabolomic changes of root tissues and the expression of genes putatively involved in exudate extrusion. Although P and Fe deficiencies differentially affected the total metabolism, some metabolites (e.g. raffinose and galactose) accumulated in roots similarly under both conditions. Moreover, P deficiency specifically affected the content of galactaric acid, malic acid, lysine, proline, and sorbitol-6-phosphate, whereas Fe deficiency specifically affected the content of sucrose, dehydroascorbic acid, galactonate, and ferulic acid. At the same time, the citrate content did not change in roots under both nutrient deficiencies with respect to the control. However, a strong release of citrate was observed, and it increased significantly with time, being +250% and +300% higher in Fe- and P-deficient plants, respectively, compared with the control. Moreover, concomitantly, a significant acidification of the growth medium was observed in both treatments. Gene expression analyses highlighted for the first time that at least two members of the multidrug and toxic compound extrusion (MATE) transporter family and one member of the plasma membrane H(+)-ATPase family are involved in the response to both P and Fe

  5. Plant population size and isolation affect herbivory of Silene latifolia by the specialist herbivore Hadena bicruris and parasitism of the herbivore by parasitoids.

    PubMed

    Elzinga, Jelmer A; Turin, Hans; van Damme, Jos M M; Biere, Arjen

    2005-07-01

    Habitat fragmentation can affect levels of herbivory in plant populations if plants and herbivores are differentially affected by fragmentation. Moreover, if herbivores are top-down controlled by predators or parasitoids, herbivory may also be affected by differential effects of fragmentation on herbivores and their natural enemies. We used natural Silene latifolia populations to examine the effects of plant population size and isolation on the level of herbivory by the seed predating noctuid Hadena bicruris and the rate of parasitism of the herbivore by its parasitoids. In addition, we examined oviposition rate, herbivory and parasitism in differently sized experimental populations. In natural populations, the level of herbivory increased and the rate of parasitism decreased with decreasing plant population size and increasing degree of isolation. The number of parasitoid species also declined with decreasing plant population size. In the experimental populations, the level of herbivory was also higher in smaller populations, in accordance with higher oviposition rates, but was not accompanied by lower rates of parasitism. Similarly, oviposition rate and herbivory, but not parasitism rate, increased near the edges of populations. These results suggests that in this system with the well dispersing herbivore H. bicruris, habitat fragmentation increases herbivory of the plant through a behavioural response of the moth that leads to higher oviposition rates in fragmented populations with a reduced population size, increased isolation and higher edge-to-interior ratio. Although the rate of parasitism and the number of parasitoid species declined with decreasing population size in the natural populations, we argue that in this system it is unlikely that this decline made a major contribution to increased herbivory. PMID:15891816

  6. Soil microbial abundance, activity and diversity response in two different altitude-adapted plant communities affected by wildfire in Sierra Nevada National Park (Granada, Spain)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bárcenas-Moreno, Gema; Zavala, Lorena; Jordan, Antonio; Bååth, Erland; Mataix-Beneyto, Jorge

    2013-04-01

    Plant communities can play an important role in fire severity and post-fire ecosystem recovery due to their role as combustible and different plant-soil microorganisms interactions. Possible differences induced by plant and microorganisms response after fire could affect the general ecosystem short and long-term response and its sustainability. The main objective of this work was the evaluation of the effect of wildfire on soil microbial abundance, activity and diversity in two different plant communities associated to different altitudes in Sierra Nevada National Park (Granada, Spain). Samples were collected in two areas located on the Sierra Nevada Mountain between 1700 and 2000 m above sea level which were affected by a large wildfire in 2005. Two samplings were carried out 8 and 20 months after fire and samples were collected in both burned and unburned (control) zones in each plant community area. Area A is located at 1700m and it is formed by Quercus rotundifolia forest while area B is located at 2000 m altitude and is composed of alpine vegetation formed by creeping bearing shrubs. Microbial biomass measured by Fumigation-Extraction method followed the same trend in both areas showing slight and no significant differences between burned and unburned area during the study period while viable and cultivable bacteria abundance were markedly higher in fire affected samples than in the control ones in both samplings. Viable and cultivable filamentous fungi had different behavior depending of plant vegetation community studied showing no differences between burned and unburned area in area A while was significantly higher in burned samples than in the control ones in area B. Microbial activity monitoring with soil microbial respiration appears to had been affected immediately after fire since microbial respiration was lower in burned samples from area A than in unburned one only 8 months after fire and no significant differences were observed between burned and

  7. Assessment of Habitat Suitability Is Affected by Plant-Soil Feedback: Comparison of Field and Garden Experiment

    PubMed Central

    Hemrová, Lucie; Knappová, Jana; Münzbergová, Zuzana

    2016-01-01

    Background Field translocation experiments (i.e., the introduction of seeds or seedlings of different species into different localities) are commonly used to study habitat associations of species, as well as factors limiting species distributions and local abundances. Species planted or sown in sites where they naturally occur are expected to perform better or equally well compared to sites at which they do not occur or are rare. This, however, contrasts with the predictions of the Janzen-Connell hypothesis and commonly reported intraspecific negative plant-soil feedback. The few previous studies indicating poorer performance of plants at sites where they naturally occur did not explore the mechanisms behind this pattern. Aims and Methods In this study, we used field translocation experiments established using both seeds and seedlings to study the determinants of local abundance of four dominant species in grasslands. To explore the possible effects of intraspecific negative plant-soil feedback on our results, we tested the effect of local species abundance on the performance of the plants in the field experiment. In addition, we set up a garden experiment to explore the intensity of intraspecific as well as interspecific feedback between the dominants used in the experiment. Key Results In some cases, the distribution and local abundances of the species were partly driven by habitat conditions at the sites, and species performed better at their own sites. However, the prevailing pattern was that the local dominants performed worse at sites where they naturally occur than at any other sites. Moreover, the success of plants in the field experiment was lower in the case of higher intraspecific abundance prior to experimental setup. In the garden feedback experiment, two of the species performed significantly worse in soils conditioned by their species than in soils conditioned by the other species. In addition, the performance of the plants was significantly

  8. High-level hemicellulosic arabinose predominately affects lignocellulose crystallinity for genetically enhancing both plant lodging resistance and biomass enzymatic digestibility in rice mutants.

    PubMed

    Li, Fengcheng; Zhang, Mingliang; Guo, Kai; Hu, Zhen; Zhang, Ran; Feng, Yongqing; Yi, Xiaoyan; Zou, Weihua; Wang, Lingqiang; Wu, Changyin; Tian, Jinshan; Lu, Tiegang; Xie, Guosheng; Peng, Liangcai

    2015-05-01

    Rice is a major food crop with enormous biomass residue for biofuels. As plant cell wall recalcitrance basically decides a costly biomass process, genetic modification of plant cell walls has been regarded as a promising solution. However, due to structural complexity and functional diversity of plant cell walls, it becomes essential to identify the key factors of cell wall modifications that could not much alter plant growth, but cause an enhancement in biomass enzymatic digestibility. To address this issue, we performed systems biology analyses of a total of 36 distinct cell wall mutants of rice. As a result, cellulose crystallinity (CrI) was examined to be the key factor that negatively determines either the biomass enzymatic saccharification upon various chemical pretreatments or the plant lodging resistance, an integrated agronomic trait in plant growth and grain production. Notably, hemicellulosic arabinose (Ara) was detected to be the major factor that negatively affects cellulose CrI probably through its interlinking with β-1,4-glucans. In addition, lignin and G monomer also exhibited the positive impact on biomass digestion and lodging resistance. Further characterization of two elite mutants, Osfc17 and Osfc30, showing normal plant growth and high biomass enzymatic digestion in situ and in vitro, revealed the multiple GH9B candidate genes for reducing cellulose CrI and XAT genes for increasing hemicellulosic Ara level. Hence, the results have suggested the potential cell wall modifications for enhancing both biomass enzymatic digestibility and plant lodging resistance by synchronically overexpressing GH9B and XAT genes in rice. PMID:25418842

  9. Reduction of inositol (1,4,5)–trisphosphate affects the overall phosphoinositol pathway and leads to modifications in light signalling and secondary metabolism in tomato plants

    PubMed Central

    Alimohammadi, Mohammad; de Silva, Kanishka; Ballu, Clarisse; Ali, Nawab; Khodakovskaya, Mariya V.

    2012-01-01

    The phosphoinositol pathway is one of the major eukaryotic signalling pathways. The metabolite of the phosphoinositol pathway, inositol- (1,4,5) trisphosphate (InsP3), is a regulator of plant responses to a wide variety of stresses, including light, drought, cold, and salinity. It was found that the expression of InsP 5-ptase, the enzyme that hydrolyses InsP3, also dramatically affects the levels of inositol phosphate metabolites and the secondary metabolites in transgenic tomato plants. Tomato plants expressing InsP 5-ptase exhibited a reduction in the levels of several important inositol phosphates, including InsP1, InsP2, InsP3, and InsP4. Reduced levels of inositol phosphates accompanied an increase in the accumulation of phenylpropanoids (rutin, chlorogenic acid) and ascorbic acid (vitamin C) in the transgenic fruits of tomato plants. The enhanced accumulation of these metabolites in transgenic tomato plants was in direct correspondence with the observed up-regulation of the genes that express the key enzymes of ascorbic acid metabolism (myo-inositol oxygenase, MIOX; L-galactono-γ-lactone dehydrogenase, GLDH) and phenylpropanoid metabolism (chalcone synthase, CHS1; cinnamoyl-CoA shikimate/quinate transferase, HCT). To understand the molecular links between the activation of different branches of plant metabolism and InsP3 reduction in tomato fruits, the expression of transcription factors known to be involved in light signalling was analysed by real-time RT-PCR. The expression of LeHY5, SIMYB12, and LeELIP was found to be higher in fruits expressing InsP 5-ptase. These results suggest possible interconnections between phosphoinositol metabolism, light signalling, and secondary metabolism in plants. Our study also revealed the biotechnological potential for the genetic improvement of crop plants by the manipulation of the phosphoinositol pathway. PMID:21994174

  10. Increasing Plant Based Foods or Dairy Foods Differentially Affects Nutrient Intakes: Dietary Scenarios Using NHANES 2007-2010.

    PubMed

    Cifelli, Christopher J; Houchins, Jenny A; Demmer, Elieke; Fulgoni, Victor L

    2016-01-01

    Diets rich in plant foods and lower in animal-based products have garnered increased attention among researchers, dietitians and health professionals in recent years for their potential to, not only improve health, but also to lessen the environmental impact. However, the potential effects of increasing plant-based foods at the expense of animal-based foods on macro- and micronutrient nutrient adequacy in the U.S. diet is unknown. In addition, dairy foods are consistently under consumed, thus the impact of increased dairy on nutrient adequacy is important to measure. Accordingly, the objective of this study was to use national survey data to model three different dietary scenarios to assess the effects of increasing plant-based foods or dairy foods on macronutrient intake and nutrient adequacy. Data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) 2007-2010 for persons two years and older (n = 17,387) were used in all the analyses. Comparisons were made of usual intake of macronutrients and shortfall nutrients of three dietary scenarios that increased intakes by 100%: (i) plant-based foods; (ii) protein-rich plant-based foods (i.e., legumes, nuts, seeds, soy); and (iii) milk, cheese and yogurt. Scenarios (i) and (ii) had commensurate reductions in animal product intake. In both children (2-18 years) and adults (≥19 years), the percent not meeting the Estimated Average Requirement (EAR) decreased for vitamin C, magnesium, vitamin E, folate and iron when plant-based foods were increased. However the percent not meeting the EAR increased for calcium, protein, vitamin A, and vitamin D in this scenario. Doubling protein-rich plant-based foods had no effect on nutrient intake because they were consumed in very low quantities in the baseline diet. The dairy model reduced the percent not meeting the EAR for calcium, vitamin A, vitamin D, magnesium, and protein, while sodium and saturated fat levels increased. Our modeling shows that increasing plant

  11. Increasing Plant Based Foods or Dairy Foods Differentially Affects Nutrient Intakes: Dietary Scenarios Using NHANES 2007–2010

    PubMed Central

    Cifelli, Christopher J.; Houchins, Jenny A.; Demmer, Elieke; Fulgoni, Victor L.

    2016-01-01

    Diets rich in plant foods and lower in animal-based products have garnered increased attention among researchers, dietitians and health professionals in recent years for their potential to, not only improve health, but also to lessen the environmental impact. However, the potential effects of increasing plant-based foods at the expense of animal-based foods on macro- and micronutrient nutrient adequacy in the U.S. diet is unknown. In addition, dairy foods are consistently under consumed, thus the impact of increased dairy on nutrient adequacy is important to measure. Accordingly, the objective of this study was to use national survey data to model three different dietary scenarios to assess the effects of increasing plant-based foods or dairy foods on macronutrient intake and nutrient adequacy. Data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) 2007–2010 for persons two years and older (n = 17,387) were used in all the analyses. Comparisons were made of usual intake of macronutrients and shortfall nutrients of three dietary scenarios that increased intakes by 100%: (i) plant-based foods; (ii) protein-rich plant-based foods (i.e., legumes, nuts, seeds, soy); and (iii) milk, cheese and yogurt. Scenarios (i) and (ii) had commensurate reductions in animal product intake. In both children (2–18 years) and adults (≥19 years), the percent not meeting the Estimated Average Requirement (EAR) decreased for vitamin C, magnesium, vitamin E, folate and iron when plant-based foods were increased. However the percent not meeting the EAR increased for calcium, protein, vitamin A, and vitamin D in this scenario. Doubling protein-rich plant-based foods had no effect on nutrient intake because they were consumed in very low quantities in the baseline diet. The dairy model reduced the percent not meeting the EAR for calcium, vitamin A, vitamin D, magnesium, and protein, while sodium and saturated fat levels increased. Our modeling shows that increasing plant

  12. Cell wall assembly and intracellular trafficking in plant cells are directly affected by changes in the magnitude of gravitational acceleration.

    PubMed

    Chebli, Youssef; Pujol, Lauranne; Shojaeifard, Anahid; Brouwer, Iman; van Loon, Jack J W A; Geitmann, Anja

    2013-01-01

    Plants are able to sense the magnitude and direction of gravity. This capacity is thought to reside in selected cell types within the plant body that are equipped with specialized organelles called statoliths. However, most plant cells do not possess statoliths, yet they respond to changes in gravitational acceleration. To understand the effect of gravity on the metabolism and cellular functioning of non-specialized plant cells, we investigated a rapidly growing plant cell devoid of known statoliths and without gravitropic behavior, the pollen tube. The effects of hyper-gravity and omnidirectional exposure to gravity on intracellular trafficking and on cell wall assembly were assessed in Camellia pollen tubes, a model system with highly reproducible growth behavior in vitro. Using an epi-fluorescence microscope mounted on the Large Diameter Centrifuge at the European Space Agency, we were able to demonstrate that vesicular trafficking is reduced under hyper-gravity conditions. Immuno-cytochemistry confirmed that both in hyper and omnidirectional gravity conditions, the characteristic spatial profiles of cellulose and callose distribution in the pollen tube wall were altered, in accordance with a dose-dependent effect on pollen tube diameter. Our findings suggest that in response to gravity induced stress, the pollen tube responds by modifying cell wall assembly to compensate for the altered mechanical load. The effect was reversible within few minutes demonstrating that the pollen tube is able to quickly adapt to changing stress conditions. PMID:23516452

  13. AtSWEET4, a hexose facilitator, mediates sugar transport to axial sinks and affects plant development.

    PubMed

    Liu, Xiaozhu; Zhang, Yan; Yang, Chao; Tian, Zhihong; Li, Jianxiong

    2016-01-01

    Plants transport photoassimilates from source organs to sink tissues through the phloem translocation pathway. In the transport phloem, sugars that escape from the sieve tubes are released into the apoplasmic space between the sieve element/companion cell complex (SE/CC) and phloem parenchyma cells (PPCs) during the process of long-distance transport. The competition for sugar acquisition between SE/CC and adjoining PPCs is mediated by plasma membrane translocators. YFP-tagged AtSWEET4 protein is localized in the plasma membrane, and PromoterAtSWEET4-GUS analysis showed that AtSWEET4 is expressed in the stele of roots and veins of leaves and flowers. Overexpression of AtSWEET4 in Arabidopsis increases plant size and accumulates more glucose and fructose. By contrast, knock-down of AtSWEET4 by RNA-interference leads to small plant size, reduction in glucose and fructose contents, chlorosis in the leaf vein network, and reduction in chlorophyll content in leaves. Yeast assays demonstrated that AtSWEET4 is able to complement both fructose and glucose transport deficiency. Transgenic plants of AtSWEET4 overexpression exhibit higher freezing tolerance and support more growth of bacterium Pseudomonas syringae pv. phaseolicola NPS3121. We conclude that AtSWEET4 plays an important role in mediating sugar transport in axial tissues during plant growth and development. PMID:27102826

  14. Multi-walled Сarbon Nanotubes Penetrate into Plant Cells and Affect the Growth of Onobrychis arenaria Seedlings.

    PubMed

    Smirnova, E A; Gusev, A A; Zaitseva, O N; Lazareva, E M; Onishchenko, G E; Kuznetsova, E V; Tkachev, A G; Feofanov, A V; Kirpichnikov, M P

    2011-01-01

    Engineered nanoparticles (ENPs) are now being used in many sectors of industry; however, the impact of ENPs on the environment still requires further study, since their use, recycling, and accidental spill can result in the accumulation of nanoparticles in the atmosphere, soil, and water. Plants are an integral part of ecosystems; hence their interaction with ENPs is inevitable. It is important to understand the consequences of this interaction and assess its potential effects. The present research is focused on studying the effects of the industrial material Taunit, containing multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWNTs), on plants, and testing of its ability to penetrate into plant cells and tissues. Taunit has been found to stimulate the growth of roots and stems and cause an increase in peroxidase activity inOnobrychis arenariaseedlings. Peroxidase activity increases with decreasing concentration of Taunit from 1,000 to 100 mg/l. MWNTs from Taunit were detected in the cells and tissues of seedling roots and leaves, implying the ability of MWNTs to penetrate into roots and accumulate there, as well as their ability to be transported into seedling leaves. Thus, the changes in the physiological parameters of plants are associated not only with MWNT adsorption on the root surface, as previously believed, but also with their penetration, uptake and accumulation in the plant cells and tissues. PMID:22649678

  15. AtSWEET4, a hexose facilitator, mediates sugar transport to axial sinks and affects plant development

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Xiaozhu; Zhang, Yan; Yang, Chao; Tian, Zhihong; Li, Jianxiong

    2016-01-01

    Plants transport photoassimilates from source organs to sink tissues through the phloem translocation pathway. In the transport phloem, sugars that escape from the sieve tubes are released into the apoplasmic space between the sieve element/companion cell complex (SE/CC) and phloem parenchyma cells (PPCs) during the process of long-distance transport. The competition for sugar acquisition between SE/CC and adjoining PPCs is mediated by plasma membrane translocators. YFP-tagged AtSWEET4 protein is localized in the plasma membrane, and PromoterAtSWEET4-GUS analysis showed that AtSWEET4 is expressed in the stele of roots and veins of leaves and flowers. Overexpression of AtSWEET4 in Arabidopsis increases plant size and accumulates more glucose and fructose. By contrast, knock-down of AtSWEET4 by RNA-interference leads to small plant size, reduction in glucose and fructose contents, chlorosis in the leaf vein network, and reduction in chlorophyll content in leaves. Yeast assays demonstrated that AtSWEET4 is able to complement both fructose and glucose transport deficiency. Transgenic plants of AtSWEET4 overexpression exhibit higher freezing tolerance and support more growth of bacterium Pseudomonas syringae pv. phaseolicola NPS3121. We conclude that AtSWEET4 plays an important role in mediating sugar transport in axial tissues during plant growth and development. PMID:27102826

  16. Modifications of Sphingolipid Content Affect Tolerance to Hemibiotrophic and Necrotrophic Pathogens by Modulating Plant Defense Responses in Arabidopsis.

    PubMed

    Magnin-Robert, Maryline; Le Bourse, Doriane; Markham, Jonathan; Dorey, Stéphan; Clément, Christophe; Baillieul, Fabienne; Dhondt-Cordelier, Sandrine

    2015-11-01

    Sphingolipids are emerging as second messengers in programmed cell death and plant defense mechanisms. However, their role in plant defense is far from being understood, especially against necrotrophic pathogens. Sphingolipidomics and plant defense responses during pathogenic infection were evaluated in the mutant of long-chain base phosphate (LCB-P) lyase, encoded by the dihydrosphingosine-1-phosphate lyase1 (AtDPL1) gene and regulating long-chain base/LCB-P homeostasis. Atdpl1 mutants exhibit tolerance to the necrotrophic fungus Botrytis cinerea but susceptibility to the hemibiotrophic bacterium Pseudomonas syringae pv tomato (Pst). Here, a direct comparison of sphingolipid profiles in Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) during infection with pathogens differing in lifestyles is described. In contrast to long-chain bases (dihydrosphingosine [d18:0] and 4,8-sphingadienine [d18:2]), hydroxyceramide and LCB-P (phytosphingosine-1-phosphate [t18:0-P] and 4-hydroxy-8-sphingenine-1-phosphate [t18:1-P]) levels are higher in Atdpl1-1 than in wild-type plants in response to B. cinerea. Following Pst infection, t18:0-P accumulates more strongly in Atdpl1-1 than in wild-type plants. Moreover, d18:0 and t18:0-P appear as key players in Pst- and B. cinerea-induced cell death and reactive oxygen species accumulation. Salicylic acid levels are similar in both types of plants, independent of the pathogen. In addition, salicylic acid-dependent gene expression is similar in both types of B. cinerea-infected plants but is repressed in Atdpl1-1 after treatment with Pst. Infection with both pathogens triggers higher jasmonic acid, jasmonoyl-isoleucine accumulation, and jasmonic acid-dependent gene expression in Atdpl1-1 mutants. Our results demonstrate that sphingolipids play an important role in plant defense, especially toward necrotrophic pathogens, and highlight a novel connection between the jasmonate signaling pathway, cell death, and sphingolipids. PMID:26378098

  17. Modifications of Sphingolipid Content Affect Tolerance to Hemibiotrophic and Necrotrophic Pathogens by Modulating Plant Defense Responses in Arabidopsis1[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Magnin-Robert, Maryline; Le Bourse, Doriane; Markham, Jonathan; Dorey, Stéphan; Clément, Christophe; Baillieul, Fabienne; Dhondt-Cordelier, Sandrine

    2015-01-01

    Sphingolipids are emerging as second messengers in programmed cell death and plant defense mechanisms. However, their role in plant defense is far from being understood, especially against necrotrophic pathogens. Sphingolipidomics and plant defense responses during pathogenic infection were evaluated in the mutant of long-chain base phosphate (LCB-P) lyase, encoded by the dihydrosphingosine-1-phosphate lyase1 (AtDPL1) gene and regulating long-chain base/LCB-P homeostasis. Atdpl1 mutants exhibit tolerance to the necrotrophic fungus Botrytis cinerea but susceptibility to the hemibiotrophic bacterium Pseudomonas syringae pv tomato (Pst). Here, a direct comparison of sphingolipid profiles in Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) during infection with pathogens differing in lifestyles is described. In contrast to long-chain bases (dihydrosphingosine [d18:0] and 4,8-sphingadienine [d18:2]), hydroxyceramide and LCB-P (phytosphingosine-1-phosphate [t18:0-P] and 4-hydroxy-8-sphingenine-1-phosphate [t18:1-P]) levels are higher in Atdpl1-1 than in wild-type plants in response to B. cinerea. Following Pst infection, t18:0-P accumulates more strongly in Atdpl1-1 than in wild-type plants. Moreover, d18:0 and t18:0-P appear as key players in Pst- and B. cinerea-induced cell death and reactive oxygen species accumulation. Salicylic acid levels are similar in both types of plants, independent of the pathogen. In addition, salicylic acid-dependent gene expression is similar in both types of B. cinerea-infected plants but is repressed in Atdpl1-1 after treatment with Pst. Infection with both pathogens triggers higher jasmonic acid, jasmonoyl-isoleucine accumulation, and jasmonic acid-dependent gene expression in Atdpl1-1 mutants. Our results demonstrate that sphingolipids play an important role in plant defense, especially toward necrotrophic pathogens, and highlight a novel connection between the jasmonate signaling pathway, cell death, and sphingolipids. PMID:26378098

  18. Plant assemblage composition and soil P concentration differentially affect communities of AM and total fungi in a semi-arid grassland.

    PubMed

    Klabi, Rim; Bell, Terrence H; Hamel, Chantal; Iwaasa, Alan; Schellenberg, Mike; Raies, Aly; St-Arnaud, Marc

    2015-01-01

    Adding inorganic P- and N-fixing legumes to semi-arid grasslands can increase forage yield, but soil nutrient concentrations and plant cover may also interact to modify soil fungal populations, impacting short- and long-term forage production. We tested the effect of plant assemblage (seven native grasses, seven native grasses + the domesticated N-fixing legume Medicago sativa, seven native grasses + the native N-fixing legume Dalea purpurea or the introduced grass Bromus biebersteinii + M. sativa) and soil P concentration (addition of 0 or 200 P2O5 kg ha(-1) at sowing) on the diversity and community structure of arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi and total fungi over two consecutive years, using 454-pyrosequencing of 18S rDNA and ITS amplicons. Treatment effects were stronger in the wet year (2008) than the dry year (2009). The presence of an N-fixing legume with native grasses generally increased AM fungal diversity, while the interaction between soil P concentration and plant assemblage modified total fungal community structure in 2008. Excluding interannual variations, which are likely driven by moisture and plant productivity, AM fungal communities in semi-arid grasslands appear to be primarily affected by plant assemblage composition, while the composition of other fungi is more closely linked to soil P. PMID:25764537

  19. Uptake of some radionuclides by woody plants growing in the rainforest of Western Ghats in India.

    PubMed

    Manigandan, P K; Chandar Shekar, B

    2014-04-01

    Transfer of the naturally occurring radionuclides (238)U, (232)Th, and (40)K, and the fallout radionuclide (210)Po to different wild plant species in the rainforest of Western Ghats was analyzed. A number of physiologically different plants from the top storey and understorey, such as shrubs and epiphytes, were compared. The concentrations of these radionuclides in the plants and soil were measured using a gamma ray spectrometer and an alpha counter, and were found to vary widely within plants and between species. The soil-plant ratios also varied between species while Elaeocarpus oblongus and epiphytic plants exhibited preferential uptake of these radionuclides. As a result, the dust particles trapped in the root systems of epiphytes could be used as bioindicators of fallout radionuclides in the Western Ghats. PMID:24463721

  20. Long-term feeding a plant-based diet devoid of marine ingredients strongly affects certain key metabolic enzymes in the rainbow trout liver.

    PubMed

    Véron, Vincent; Panserat, Stéphane; Le Boucher, Richard; Labbé, Laurent; Quillet, Edwige; Dupont-Nivet, Mathilde; Médale, Françoise

    2016-04-01

    Incorporation of a plant blend in the diet can affect growth parameters and metabolism in carnivorous fish. We studied for the first time the long-term (1 year) metabolic response of rainbow trout fed from first feeding with a plant-based diet totally devoid of marine ingredients. Hepatic enzymes were analyzed at enzymatic and molecular levels, at 3, 8 and 24 h after the last meal to study both the short-term effects of the last meal and long-term effects of the diet. The results were compared with those of fish fed a control diet of fish meal and fish oil. Growth, feed intake, feed efficiency and protein retention were lower in the group fed the plant-based diet. Glucokinase and pyruvate kinase activity were lower in the livers of trout fed the plant-based diet which the proportion of starch was lower than in the control diet. Glutamate dehydrogenase was induced by the plant-based diet, suggesting an imbalance of amino acids and a possible link with the lower protein retention observed. Gene expression of delta 6 desaturase was higher in fish fed the plant-based diet, probably linked to a high dietary level of linolenic acid and the absence of long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids in vegetable oils. Hydroxymethylglutaryl-CoA synthase expression was also induced by plant-based diet because of the low rate of cholesterol in the diet. Changes in regulation mechanisms already identified through short-term nutritional experiments (<12 weeks) suggest that metabolic responses are implemented at short term and remain in the long term. PMID:26746847

  1. Fractions of calcium in the plant-soil system affected by the application of olive oil wastewater.

    PubMed

    Gallardo-Lara, F; Azcón, M; Quesada, J L; Polo, A

    1998-09-01

    A pot experiment using calcareous soil was conducted in a growth chamber to examine the effects of olive oil wastewater applications on Ca fractions in the plant and on exchangeable Ca in soil after plant growth. The experimental treatments consisted of two rates of olive oil wastewater, two mineral fertilizer treatments including K, which supplied K in amounts equivalent to the K supplied by the olive oil wastewater treatments, a mineral fertilizer without K treatment (F), and a control. The pots were sown with ryegrass which was harvested 3 times at monthly intervals. The high rate of olive oil wastewater resulted in a prolonged increases in dry matter production. It also resulted in a reduction in the concentrations of soluble Ca, bound Ca, inorganic insoluble Ca and organic insoluble Ca in the plant shoots relative to the control and the F treatment. The low rate of olive oil wastewater produced similar but less marked effects, with decreases being observed in the soluble Ca and bound Ca fractions. After 3 months of plant growth, soil exchangeable Ca was higher in the control and F treatment soils than in the soils receiving olive oil wastewater or K fertilizer. At this time, there were no significant differences in exchangeable Ca between the soils receiving olive oil wastewater and those treated with K fertilizer. PMID:9731309

  2. Soil Organic Matter Quality of an Oxisol Affected by Plant Residues and Crop Sequence under No-Tillage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cora, Jose; Marcelo, Adolfo

    2013-04-01

    Plant residues are considered the primarily resource for soil organic matter (SOM) formation and the amounts and properties of plant litter are important controlling factors for the SOM quality. We determined the amounts, quality and decomposition rate of plant residues and the effects of summer and winter crop sequences on soil organic C (TOC) content, both particulate organic C (POC) and mineral-associated organic C (MOC) pools and humic substances in a Brazilian Rhodic Eutrudox soil under a no-tillage system. The organic C analysis in specifics pools used in this study was effective and should be adopted in tropical climates to evaluate the soil quality and the sustainability of various cropping systems. Continuous growth of soybean (Glycine max L. Merrill) on summer provided higher contents of soil POC and continuous growth of maize (Zea mays L.) provided higher soil humic acid and MOC contents. Summer soybean-maize rotation provided the higher plant diversity, which likely improved the soil microbial activity and the soil organic C consumption. The winter sunn hemp (Crotalaria juncea L.), pigeon pea (Cajanus cajan (L.) Millsp), oilseed radish (Raphanus sativus L.) and pearl millet (Pennisetum americanum (L.) Leeke) enhanced the soil MOC, a finding that is attributable to the higher N content of the crop residue. Sunn hemp and pigeon pea provided the higher soil POC content. Sunn hemp showed better performance and positive effects on the SOM quality, making it a suitable winter crop choice for tropical conditions with a warm and dry winter.

  3. Weather and plant age affect the levels of steroidal saponin and Pithomyces chartarum spores in Brachiaria grass

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Brachiaria species are cultivated worldwide in tropical and subtropical climates as the main forage source for ruminants. Numerous tropical and warm-season grasses cause hepatogenous photosensitization, among them several species of Brachiaria. Steroidal saponins present in these plants may be respo...

  4. Grasshopper herbivory affects native plant diversity and abundance in a grassland dominated by the exotic grass Agropyron cristatum

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The indirect effects of native generalist insect herbivores on interactions between exotic and native grassland plants have received limited attention. Crested wheatgrass (Agropyron cristatum) is the most common exotic grass in western North America. Crested wheatgrass communities are resistant to c...

  5. VLN2 Regulates Plant Architecture by Affecting Microfilament Dynamics and Polar Auxin Transport in Rice[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Shengyang; Xie, Yurong; Guo, Xiuping; Sheng, Peike; Wang, Juan; Wu, Chuanyin; Wang, Haiyang; Wan, Jianmin

    2015-01-01

    As a fundamental and dynamic cytoskeleton network, microfilaments (MFs) are regulated by diverse actin binding proteins (ABPs). Villins are one type of ABPs belonging to the villin/gelsolin superfamily, and their function is poorly understood in monocotyledonous plants. Here, we report the isolation and characterization of a rice (Oryza sativa) mutant defective in VILLIN2 (VLN2), which exhibits malformed organs, including twisted roots and shoots at the seedling stage. Cellular examination revealed that the twisted phenotype of the vln2 mutant is mainly caused by asymmetrical expansion of cells on the opposite sides of an organ. VLN2 is preferentially expressed in growing tissues, consistent with a role in regulating cell expansion in developing organs. Biochemically, VLN2 exhibits conserved actin filament bundling, severing and capping activities in vitro, with bundling and stabilizing activity being confirmed in vivo. In line with these findings, the vln2 mutant plants exhibit a more dynamic actin cytoskeleton network than the wild type. We show that vln2 mutant plants exhibit a hypersensitive gravitropic response, faster recycling of PIN2 (an auxin efflux carrier), and altered auxin distribution. Together, our results demonstrate that VLN2 plays an important role in regulating plant architecture by modulating MF dynamics, recycling of PIN2, and polar auxin transport. PMID:26486445

  6. Deregulation of Plant Cell Death Through Disruption of Chloroplast Functionality Affects Asexual Sporulation of Zymoseptoria tritici on Wheat.

    PubMed

    Lee, Wing-Sham; Devonshire, B Jean; Hammond-Kosack, Kim E; Rudd, Jason J; Kanyuka, Kostya

    2015-05-01

    Chloroplasts have a critical role in plant defense as sites for the biosynthesis of the signaling compounds salicylic acid (SA), jasmonic acid (JA), and nitric oxide (NO) and as major sites of reactive oxygen species production. Chloroplasts, therefore, regarded as important players in the induction and regulation of programmed cell death (PCD) in response to abiotic stresses and pathogen attack. The predominantly foliar pathogen of wheat Zymoseptoria tritici is proposed to exploit the plant PCD, which is associated with the transition in the fungus to the necrotrophic phase of infection. In this study virus-induced gene silencing was used to silence two key genes in carotenoid and chlorophyll biosynthesis, phytoene desaturase (PDS) and Mg-chelatase H subunit (ChlH). The chlorophyll-deficient, PDS- and ChlH-silenced leaves of susceptible plants underwent more rapid pathogen-induced PCD but were significantly less able to support the subsequent asexual sporulation of Z. tritici. Conversely, major gene (Stb6)-mediated resistance to Z. tritici was partially compromised in PDS- and ChlH-silenced leaves. Chlorophyll-deficient wheat ears also displayed increased Z. tritici disease lesion formation accompanied by increased asexual sporulation. These data highlight the importance of chloroplast functionality and its interaction with regulated plant cell death in mediating different genotype and tissue-specific interactions between Z. tritici and wheat. PMID:25496594

  7. Chemical signals from plants previously infected with root knot nematodes affect behavior of infective juvenile root knot nematodes

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Nematodes are a worldwide problem in agriculture, with losses estimated to $100 billion per year in the US. Damage caused by root-knot nematodes (Meloidogyne spp.) (RKN) disrupts the flow of water and nutrients to the plant and increases the plant’s vulnerability to other pathogens. While studies ...

  8. Interactions between the jasmonic and salicylic acid pathway modulate the plant metabolome and affect herbivores of different feeding types.

    PubMed

    Schweiger, R; Heise, A-M; Persicke, M; Müller, C

    2014-07-01

    The phytohormones jasmonic acid (JA) and salicylic acid (SA) mediate induced plant defences and the corresponding pathways interact in a complex manner as has been shown on the transcript and proteine level. Downstream, metabolic changes are important for plant-herbivore interactions. This study investigated metabolic changes in leaf tissue and phloem exudates of Plantago lanceolata after single and combined JA and SA applications as well as consequences on chewing-biting (Heliothis virescens) and piercing-sucking (Myzus persicae) herbivores. Targeted metabolite profiling and untargeted metabolic fingerprinting uncovered different categories of plant metabolites, which were influenced in a specific manner, indicating points of divergence, convergence, positive crosstalk and pronounced mutual antagonism between the signaling pathways. Phytohormone-specific decreases of primary metabolite pool sizes in the phloem exudates may indicate shifts in sink-source relations, resource allocation, nutrient uptake or photosynthesis. Survival of both herbivore species was significantly reduced by JA and SA treatments. However, the combined application of JA and SA attenuated the negative effects at least against H. virescens suggesting that mutual antagonism between the JA and SA pathway may be responsible. Pathway interactions provide a great regulatory potential for the plant that allows triggering of appropriate defences when attacked by different antagonist species. PMID:24372400

  9. The pleiotropic ABNORMAL FLOWER AND DWARF1 affects plant height, floral development and grain yield in rice.

    PubMed

    Ren, Deyong; Rao, Yuchun; Wu, Liwen; Xu, Qiankun; Li, Zizhuang; Yu, Haiping; Zhang, Yu; Leng, Yujia; Hu, Jiang; Zhu, Li; Gao, Zhenyu; Dong, Guojun; Zhang, Guangheng; Guo, Longbiao; Zeng, Dali; Qian, Qian

    2016-06-01

    Moderate plant height and successful establishment of reproductive organs play pivotal roles in rice grain production. The molecular mechanism that controls the two aspects remains unclear in rice. In the present study, we characterized a rice gene, ABNORMAL FLOWER AND DWARF1 (AFD1) that determined plant height, floral development and grain yield. The afd1 mutant showed variable defects including the dwarfism, long panicle, low seed setting and reduced grain yield. In addition, abnormal floral organs were also observed in the afd1 mutant including slender and thick hulls, and hull-like lodicules. AFD1 encoded a DUF640 domain protein and was expressed in all tested tissues and organs. Subcellular localization showed AFD1-green fluorescent fusion protein (GFP) was localized in the nucleus. Meantime, our results suggested that AFD1 regulated the expression of cell division and expansion related genes. PMID:26486996

  10. The content and toxicity of heavy metals in soils affected by aerial emissions from the Pechenganikel plant

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Evdokimova, G. A.; Mozgova, N. P.; Korneikova, M. V.

    2014-05-01

    The zoning of the terrestrial ecosystems exposed to the aerial emissions from the Pechenganikel plant (Murmansk oblast) was performed; it was based on the state of the soil cover in 2012. The following parameters were determined: the pH, the contents of heavy metals (HMs) and exchangeable calcium and magnesium, the proportion between the organic and mineral soil components, and the state of the soil micro-biota. Three zones differing in the intensity of the soil pollution were distinguished: the zone of strong pollution (at a distance of 3 km from the source of the emission), the zone of medium pollution (16 km), and the zone of weak pollution (25-30 km to the southwest from the pollution source). In the last ten years, the soil pollution in the zone influenced by aerial emissions from the Pechenganikel plant has remained the same. The amount of bacteria and fungi in the air is directly related to that in the soil. The results obtained point to the bacterial pollution of the atmosphere nearby the industrial center. In the vicinity of the plant, gram-negative bacteria ( Gracilicutes) predominate in the air; in remote areas, gram-positive bacteria ( Fermicutes) are dominants. In the air nearby the industrial center, potentially pathogenic fungi ( Gongronella butleri and Alternaria alternata) were revealed.

  11. Host plant resistance in romaine lettuce affects feeding behavior and biology of Trichoplusia ni and Spodoptera exigua (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae).

    PubMed

    Sethi, Amit; McAuslane, Heather J; Nagata, Russell T; Nuessly, Gregg S

    2006-12-01

    Lettuce quality and yield can be reduced by feeding of several lepidopterous pests, particularly cabbage looper, Trichoplusia ni (Hübner), and beet armyworm, Spodoptera exigua (Hübner) (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae). Host plant resistance to these insects is an environmentally sound adjunct to conventional chemical control. In this study we compared the survival, development, and feeding behavior of cabbage looper and beet armyworm on two romaine lettuce cultivars, resistant 'Valmaine' and susceptible 'Tall Guzmaine'. Larval mortality of both species was significantly higher on resistant Valmaine than on susceptible Tall Guzmaine. The average weight per larva after feeding for 1 wk on Tall Guzmaine plants was 6 times (beet armyworm) and 2 times (cabbage looper) greater than that of larvae feeding on Valmaine plants. Significant reduction in larval growth on Valmaine compared with that on Tall Guzmaine resulted in a 5.9- (beet armyworm) and 2.6-d (cabbage looper) increase in larval duration and almost a 1-d increase in pupal duration. Average pupal and adult weights and successful pupation of cabbage looper and beet armyworm were reduced on Valmaine compared with Tall Guzmaine. The sex ratio of progeny did not deviate from 1:1 when larvae were reared on either Valmaine or Tall Guzmaine. The fecundity of cabbage looper and beet armyworm adults that developed from larvae reared on Valmaine was about one-third that of adults from Tall Guzmaine, but adult longevity did not significantly differ on the two lettuce cultivars. The two insect species showed different feeding preferences for leaves of different age groups on Valmaine and Tall Guzmaine. Cabbage loopers cut narrow trenches on the leaf before actual feeding to block the flow of latex to the intended site of feeding. In contrast, beet armyworms did not trench. The different feeding behavior of the two species on Valmaine may explain the superior performance of cabbage looper compared with beet armyworm. PMID:17195688

  12. In vitro regeneration and optimization of factors affecting Agrobacterium mediated transformation in Artemisia Pallens, an important medicinal plant.

    PubMed

    Alok, Anshu; Shukla, Vishnu; Pala, Zarna; Kumar, Jitesh; Kudale, Subhash; Desai, Neetin

    2016-04-01

    Artemisia pallens is an important medicinal plant. In-vitro regeneration and multiplication of A. pallens have been established using attached cotyledons. Different growth regulators were considered for regeneration of multiple shoots. An average of 36 shoots per explants were obtained by culturing attached cotyledons on Murashige and Skoog's medium containing 2 mg/L BAP and 0.1 mg/L NAA, after 45 days. The shoots were rooted best on half Murashige and Skoog's medium with respect to media containing 1 mg/L IBA or 1 mg/L NAA. Different parameters such as type of bacterial strains, OD600 of bacterial culture, co-cultivation duration, concentration of acetosyringone and explants type were optimized for transient expression of the reporter gene. Agrobacterium tumefaciens harbouring pCambia1301 plasmid carrying β-glucuronidase as a reporter gene and hygromycin phosphotransferase as plant selectable marker genes were used for genetic transformation of A. pallens. Hygromycin lethality test showed concentration of 15 mg/L were sufficient to inhibit the growth of attached cotyledons and multiple shoot buds of nontransgenics in selection media. Up to 83 % transient transformation was found when attached cotyledons were co-cultivated with Agrobacterium strain AGL1 for 2 days at 22 °C on shoot induction medium. The bacterial growth was eliminated by addition of cefotaxime (200 mg/L) in selection media. T0 transgenic plants were confirmed by GUS histochemical assay and further by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) using uidA and hpt gene specific primers. The study is useful in establishing technological improvement in A. pallens by genetic engineering. PMID:27436917

  13. Factors affecting the initial adhesion and retention of the plant pathogen Xylella fastidiosa in the foregut of an insect vector.

    PubMed

    Killiny, Nabil; Almeida, Rodrigo P P

    2014-01-01

    Vector transmission of bacterial plant pathogens involves three steps: pathogen acquisition from an infected host, retention within the vector, and inoculation of cells into susceptible tissue of an uninfected plant. In this study, a combination of plant and artificial diet systems were used to determine the importance of several genes on the initial adhesion and retention of the bacterium Xylella fastidiosa to an efficient insect vector. Mutant strains included fimbrial (fimA and pilB) and afimbrial (hxfA and hxfB) adhesins and three loci involved in regulatory systems (rpfF, rpfC, and cgsA). Transmission assays with variable retention time indicated that HxfA and HxfB were primarily important for early adhesion to vectors, while FimA was necessary for both adhesion and retention. The long pilus protein PilB was not deficient in initial adhesion but may be important for retention. Genes upregulated under the control of rpfF are important for both initial adhesion and retention, as transmission rates of this mutant strain were initially low and decreased over time, while disruption of rpfC and cgsA yielded trends similar to that shown by the wild-type control. Because induction of an X. fastidiosa transmissible state requires pectin, a series of experiments were used to test the roles of a polygalacturonase (pglA) and the pectin and galacturonic acid carbohydrates on the transmission of X. fastidiosa. Results show that galacturonic acid, or PglA activity breaking pectin into its major subunit (galacturonic acid), is required for X. fastidiosa vector transmission using an artificial diet system. This study shows that early adhesion and retention of X. fastidiosa are mediated by different factors. It also illustrates that the interpretation of results of vector transmission experiments, in the context of vector-pathogen interaction studies, is highly dependent on experimental design. PMID:24185853

  14. Absence of internal radiation contamination by radioactive cesium among children affected by the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant disaster.

    PubMed

    Tsubokura, Masaharu; Kato, Shigeaki; Nomura, Shuhei; Morita, Tomohiro; Sugimoto, Amina; Gilmour, Stuart; Kami, Masahiro; Oikawa, Tomoyoshi; Kanazawa, Yukio

    2015-01-01

    Chronic internal radiation contamination accounts for a substantial fraction of long-term cumulative radiation exposure among residents in radiation-contaminated areas. However, little information is available on ongoing chronic internal radiation contamination among residents near the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. Using a whole body counter, internal radiation contamination levels among elementary and middle school students who commute to 22 schools located within Minamisoma city were assessed between May and July 2013 (26 to 28 mo after the disaster). Of 3,299 elementary and middle school students in the city, 3,255 individuals (98%) were screened through school health check-ups. Not a single student was detected with internal radiation contamination due to radioactive cesium. The study found no risk of chronic internal radiation exposure among residents near the crippled nuclear power plant. Current food inspection by local governments, volunteers, and farmers has been functioning well within Fukushima prefecture. However, food management by screening suspected contamination along with whole body counter screening are key public health interventions and should be continued to avoid further internal radiation exposure in radiation-contaminated areas. PMID:25437518

  15. Extrachromosomal homologous DNA recombination in plant cells is fast and is not affected by CpG methylation.

    PubMed Central

    Puchta, H; Kocher, S; Hohn, B

    1992-01-01

    Using a sensitive transient assay, we investigated extrachromosomal homologous DNA recombination (ECR) in plant cells. As the plant genome is highly C methylated, we addressed the question of whether CpG methylation has an influence on DNA recombination efficiencies. Whereas the expression level of the fully CpG-methylated DNA molecules was reduced drastically, we found no significant changes in ECR efficiencies between two partly CpG-methylated plasmids or between one fully CpG-methylated and one nonmethylated plasmid. Using a modified polymerase chain reaction analysis, we were able to detect recombination between two fully CpG-methylated plasmids. Furthermore, we characterized the kinetics of the ECR reaction. Cotransfection of plasmids carrying truncated copies of the beta-glucuronidase (GUS) gene resulted in enzyme activity with a delay of only half an hour compared with that of the plasmid carrying the functional marker gene. This indicates that the ECR reaction itself requires no more than 30 min. By polymerase chain reaction, we were able to detect the recombined GUS gene as early as 2 h after transfection. This result and the time course of the transient GUS activity indicate that ECR occurs mainly early after transfection. The biological significance of this finding is discussed, and properties of ECR and intrachromosomal recombination are compared. Images PMID:1630452

  16. Does the passage of seeds through frugivore gut affect their storage: A case study on the endangered plant Euryodendron excelsum

    PubMed Central

    Shikang, Shen; Fuqin, Wu; Yuehua, Wang

    2015-01-01

    Plant-frugivore mutualism serves an important function in multiple ecological processes. Although previous studies have highlighted the effect of frugivore gut passage on fresh seed germinability, no study has investigated the effect on seed storage after frugivore gut passage. We used the endangered plant, Euryodendron excelsum, to determine the combined effects of frugivore gut passage and storage conditions on the germination percentage and rate of seeds. In particular, three treatments that included storage periods, storage methods, and seed types were designed in the experiment. We hypothesized that seeds that passed through the gut will exhibit enhanced germination capacity and rate during storage. Results showed that the final germination percentage decreased in seeds that passed through the gut, whereas the germination rate increased during seed storage. Germination decreased in most types of seeds under both dry and wet storage after 6 months compared with storage after 1 and 3 months. The results suggest that after frugivore gut passage, E. excelsum seeds cannot form persistent soil seed bank in the field, and were not suitable for species germplasm storage. These finding underscore that seeds that passed through frugivore gut have long-term impact on their viability and germination performance. PMID:26109456

  17. Signaling via the Trichoderma atroviride mitogen-activated protein kinase Tmk1 differentially affects mycoparasitism and plant protection

    PubMed Central

    Reithner, Barbara; Schuhmacher, Rainer; Stoppacher, Norbert; Pucher, Marion; Brunner, Kurt; Zeilinger, Susanne

    2015-01-01

    Trichoderma atroviride is a mycoparasite of a number of plant pathogenic fungi thereby employing morphological changes and secretion of cell wall degrading enzymes and antibiotics. The function of the tmk1 gene encoding a mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) during fungal growth, mycoparasitic interaction, and biocontrol was examined in T. atroviride. Δtmk1 mutants exhibited altered radial growth and conidiation, and displayed de-regulated infection structure formation in the absence of a host-derived signal. In confrontation assays, tmk1 deletion caused reduced mycoparasitic activity although attachment to Rhizoctonia solani and Botrytis cinerea hyphae was comparable to the parental strain. Under chitinase-inducing conditions, nag1 and ech42 transcript levels and extracellular chitinase activities were elevated in a Δtmk1 mutant, whereas upon direct confrontation with R. solani or B. cinerea a host-specific regulation of ech42 transcription was found and nag1 gene transcription was no more inducible over an elevated basal level. Δtmk1 mutants exhibited higher antifungal activity caused by low molecular weight substances, which was reflected by an over-production of 6-pentyl-α-pyrone and peptaibol antibiotics. In biocontrol assays, a Δtmk1 mutant displayed a higher ability to protect bean plants against R. solani. PMID:17509915

  18. Signaling via the Trichoderma atroviride mitogen-activated protein kinase Tmk 1 differentially affects mycoparasitism and plant protection.

    PubMed

    Reithner, Barbara; Schuhmacher, Rainer; Stoppacher, Norbert; Pucher, Marion; Brunner, Kurt; Zeilinger, Susanne

    2007-11-01

    Trichoderma atroviride is a mycoparasite of a number of plant pathogenic fungi thereby employing morphological changes and secretion of cell wall degrading enzymes and antibiotics. The function of the tmk 1 gene encoding a mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) during fungal growth, mycoparasitic interaction, and biocontrol was examined in T. atroviride. Deltatmk 1 mutants exhibited altered radial growth and conidiation, and displayed de-regulated infection structure formation in the absence of a host-derived signal. In confrontation assays, tmk 1 deletion caused reduced mycoparasitic activity although attachment to Rhizoctonia solani and Botrytis cinerea hyphae was comparable to the parental strain. Under chitinase-inducing conditions, nag 1 and ech 42 transcript levels and extracellular chitinase activities were elevated in a Deltatmk 1 mutant, whereas upon direct confrontation with R. solani or B. cinerea a host-specific regulation of ech 42 transcription was found and nag 1 gene transcription was no more inducible over an elevated basal level. Deltatmk 1 mutants exhibited higher antifungal activity caused by low molecular weight substances, which was reflected by an over-production of 6-pentyl-alpha-pyrone and peptaibol antibiotics. In biocontrol assays, a Deltatmk 1 mutant displayed a higher ability to protect bean plants against R. solani. PMID:17509915

  19. The Arabidopsis immutans Mutation Affects Plastid Differentiation and the Morphogenesis of White and Green Sectors in Variegated Plants1

    PubMed Central

    Aluru, Maneesha R.; Bae, Hanhong; Wu, Dongying; Rodermel, Steven R.

    2001-01-01

    The immutans (im) variegation mutant of Arabidopsis has green and white leaf sectors due to the action of a nuclear recessive gene, IMMUTANS (IM). This gene encodes the IM protein, which is a chloroplast homolog of the mitochondrial alternative oxidase. Because the white sectors of im accumulate the noncolored carotenoid, phytoene, IM likely serves as a redox component in phytoene desaturation. In this paper, we show that IM has a global impact on plant growth and development and is required for the differentiation of multiple plastid types, including chloroplasts, amyloplasts, and etioplasts. IM promoter activity and IM mRNAs are also expressed ubiquitously in Arabidopsis. IM transcript levels correlate with carotenoid accumulation in some, but not all, tissues. This suggests that IM function is not limited to carotenogenesis. Leaf anatomy is radically altered in the green and white sectors of im: Mesophyll cell sizes are dramatically enlarged in the green sectors and palisade cells fail to expand in the white sectors. The green im sectors also have significantly higher than normal rates of O2 evolution and elevated chlorophyll a/b ratios, typical of those found in “sun” leaves. We conclude that the changes in structure and photosynthetic function of the green leaf sectors are part of an adaptive mechanism that attempts to compensate for a lack of photosynthesis in the white leaf sectors, while maximizing the ability of the plant to avoid photodamage. PMID:11553735

  20. Targeting Tryptophan Decarboxylase to Selected Subcellular Compartments of Tobacco Plants Affects Enzyme Stability and in Vivo Function and Leads to a Lesion-Mimic Phenotype1

    PubMed Central

    Di Fiore, Stefano; Li, Qiurong; Leech, Mark James; Schuster, Flora; Emans, Neil; Fischer, Rainer; Schillberg, Stefan

    2002-01-01

    Tryptophan decarboxylase (TDC) is a cytosolic enzyme that catalyzes an early step of the terpenoid indole alkaloid biosynthetic pathway by decarboxylation of l-tryptophan to produce the protoalkaloid tryptamine. In the present study, recombinant TDC was targeted to the chloroplast, cytosol, and endoplasmic reticulum (ER) of tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum) plants to evaluate the effects of subcellular compartmentation on the accumulation of functional enzyme and its corresponding enzymatic product. TDC accumulation and in vivo function was significantly affected by the subcellular localization. Immunoblot analysis demonstrated that chloroplast-targeted TDC had improved accumulation and/or stability when compared with the cytosolic enzyme. Because ER-targeted TDC was not detectable by immunoblot analysis and tryptamine levels found in transient expression studies and in transgenic plants were low, it was concluded that the recombinant TDC was most likely unstable if ER retained. Targeting TDC to the chloroplast stroma resulted in the highest accumulation level of tryptamine so far reported in the literature for studies on heterologous TDC expression in tobacco. However, plants accumulating high levels of functional TDC in the chloroplast developed a lesion-mimic phenotype that was probably triggered by the relatively high accumulation of tryptamine in this compartment. We demonstrate that subcellular targeting may provide a useful strategy for enhancing accumulation and/or stability of enzymes involved in secondary metabolism and to divert metabolic flux toward desired end products. However, metabolic engineering of plants is a very demanding task because unexpected, and possibly unwanted, effects may be observed on plant metabolism and/or phenotype. PMID:12114570

  1. Six-year growth of Eucalyptus saligna plantings as affected by nitrogen and phosphorus fertilizer. Forest Service research paper (Final)

    SciTech Connect

    Whitesell, C.D.; DeBell, D.S.; Schubert, T.H.

    1987-10-01

    Growth responses of Eucalyptus saligna to nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) fertilizers were assessed in bioenergy plantations on abandoned sugarcane land in Hawaii. Fertilizers were applied three times (0.6, and 15 months after planting) in a factorial design with four dosages each of N(0, 25, 50, and 75 g urea per tree) and P(0, 30, 60, and 90 g triple superphosphate per tree). Phosphorus and the N x P interaction had little effect on tree growth. Effects of N, however, were dramatic during the first year, and benefits were sustained through 6 years. Effects of N on height growth and diameter growth dropped markedly during the third year and thereafter. Bioenergy plantations of E. saligna established on similar sites and soils will benefit from high dosages of N fertilizer and presumably from repeated applications.

  2. Flavonoids Affect the Light Reaction of Photosynthesis in Vitro and in Vivo as Well as the Growth of Plants.

    PubMed

    Morales-Flores, Félix; Olivares-Palomares, Karen Susana; Aguilar-Laurents, María Isabel; Rivero-Cruz, José Fausto; Lotina-Hennsen, Blas; King-Díaz, Beatriz

    2015-09-23

    Flavonoids retusin (5-hydroxy-3,7,3',4'-tetramethoxyflavone) (1) and pachypodol (5,4'-dihydroxy-3,7,3'-trimethoxyflavone) (2) were isolated from Croton ciliatoglanduliferus Ort. Pachypodol acts as a Hill reaction inhibitor with its target on the water splitting enzyme located in PSII. In the search for new herbicides from natural compounds, flavonoids 1 and 2 and flavonoid analogues quercetin (3), apigenin (4), genistein (5), and eupatorin (6) were assessed for their effect in vitro on the photosynthetic electron transport chain and in vivo on the germination and growth of the plants Physalis ixocarpa, Trifolium alexandrinum and Lolium perenne. Flavonoid 3 was the most active inhibitor of the photosynthetic uncoupled electron flow (I50 = 114 μM) with a lower log P value (1.37). Results in vivo suggest that 1, 2, 3, and 5 behave as pre- and postemergent herbicides, with 3 and 5 being more active. PMID:26322527

  3. Effective antibiotics against 'Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus' in HLB-affected citrus plants identified via the graft-based evaluation.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Muqing; Guo, Ying; Powell, Charles A; Doud, Melissa S; Yang, Chuanyu; Duan, Yongping

    2014-01-01

    Citrus huanglongbing (HLB), caused by three species of fastidious, phloem-limited 'Candidatus Liberibacter', is one of the most destructive diseases of citrus worldwide. To date, there is no established cure for this century-old and yet, newly emerging disease. As a potential control strategy for citrus HLB, 31 antibiotics were screened for effectiveness and phytotoxicity using the optimized graft-based screening system with 'Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus' (Las)-infected citrus scions. Actidione and Oxytetracycline were the most phytotoxic to citrus with less than 10% of scions surviving and growing; therefore, this data was not used in additional analyses. Results of principal component (PCA) and hierarchical clustering analyses (HCA) demonstrated that 29 antibiotics were clustered into 3 groups: highly effective, partly effective, and not effective. In spite of different modes of actions, a number of antibiotics such as, Ampicillin, Carbenicillin, Penicillin, Cefalexin, Rifampicin and Sulfadimethoxine were all highly effective in eliminating or suppressing Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus indicated by both the lowest Las infection rate and titers of the treated scions and inoculated rootstock. The non-effective group, including 11 antibiotics alone with three controls, such as Amikacin, Cinoxacin, Gentamicin, Kasugamycin, Lincomycin, Neomycin, Polymixin B and Tobramycin, did not eliminate or suppress Las in the tested concentrations, resulting in plants with increased titers of Las. The other 12 antibiotics partly eliminated or suppressed Las in the treated and graft-inoculated plants. The effective and non-phytotoxic antibiotics could be potential candidates for control of citrus HLB, either for the rescue of infected citrus germplasm or for restricted field application. PMID:25372135

  4. A novel RNA binding protein affects rbcL gene expression and is specific to bundle sheath chloroplasts in C4 plants

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Plants that utilize the highly efficient C4 pathway of photosynthesis typically possess kranz-type leaf anatomy that consists of two morphologically and functionally distinct photosynthetic cell types, the bundle sheath (BS) and mesophyll (M) cells. These two cell types differentially express many genes that are required for C4 capability and function. In mature C4 leaves, the plastidic rbcL gene, encoding the large subunit of the primary CO2 fixation enzyme Rubisco, is expressed specifically within BS cells. Numerous studies have demonstrated that BS-specific rbcL gene expression is regulated predominantly at post-transcriptional levels, through the control of translation and mRNA stability. The identification of regulatory factors associated with C4 patterns of rbcL gene expression has been an elusive goal for many years. Results RLSB, encoded by the nuclear RLSB gene, is an S1-domain RNA binding protein purified from C4 chloroplasts based on its specific binding to plastid-encoded rbcL mRNA in vitro. Co-localized with LSU to chloroplasts, RLSB is highly conserved across many plant species. Most significantly, RLSB localizes specifically to leaf bundle sheath (BS) cells in C4 plants. Comparative analysis using maize (C4) and Arabidopsis (C3) reveals its tight association with rbcL gene expression in both plants. Reduced RLSB expression (through insertion mutation or RNA silencing, respectively) led to reductions in rbcL mRNA accumulation and LSU production. Additional developmental effects, such as virescent/yellow leaves, were likely associated with decreased photosynthetic function and disruption of associated signaling networks. Conclusions Reductions in RLSB expression, due to insertion mutation or gene silencing, are strictly correlated with reductions in rbcL gene expression in both maize and Arabidopsis. In both plants, accumulation of rbcL mRNA as well as synthesis of LSU protein were affected. These findings suggest that specific accumulation

  5. Derivatives of Plant Phenolic Compound Affect the Type III Secretion System of Pseudomonas aeruginosa via a GacS-GacA Two-Component Signal Transduction System

    PubMed Central

    Yamazaki, Akihiro; Li, Jin; Zeng, Quan; Khokhani, Devanshi; Hutchins, William C.; Yost, Angela C.; Biddle, Eulandria; Toone, Eric J.

    2012-01-01

    Antibiotic therapy is the most commonly used strategy to control pathogenic infections; however, it has contributed to the generation of antibiotic-resistant bacteria. To circumvent this emerging problem, we are searching for compounds that target bacterial virulence factors rather than their viability. Pseudomonas aeruginosa, an opportunistic human pathogen, possesses a type III secretion system (T3SS) as one of the major virulence factors by which it secretes and translocates T3 effector proteins into human host cells. The fact that this human pathogen also is able to infect several plant species led us to screen a library of phenolic compounds involved in plant defense signaling and their derivatives for novel T3 inhibitors. Promoter activity screening of exoS, which encodes a T3-secreted toxin, identified two T3 inhibitors and two T3 inducers of P. aeruginosa PAO1. These compounds alter exoS transcription by affecting the expression levels of the regulatory small RNAs RsmY and RsmZ. These two small RNAs are known to control the activity of carbon storage regulator RsmA, which is responsible for the regulation of the key T3SS regulator ExsA. As RsmY and RsmZ are the only targets directly regulated by GacA, our results suggest that these phenolic compounds affect the expression of exoS through the GacSA-RsmYZ-RsmA-ExsA regulatory pathway. PMID:21968370

  6. RKP, a RING finger E3 ligase induced by BSCTV C4 protein, affects geminivirus infection by regulation of the plant cell cycle.

    PubMed

    Lai, Jianbin; Chen, Hao; Teng, Kunling; Zhao, Qingzhen; Zhang, Zhonghui; Li, Yin; Liang, Liming; Xia, Ran; Wu, Yaorong; Guo, Huishan; Xie, Qi

    2009-03-01

    The C4 protein from Curtovirus is known as a major symptom determinant, but the mode of action of the C4 protein remains unclear. To understand the mechanism of involvement of C4 protein in virus-plant interactions, we introduced the C4 gene from Beet severe curly top virus (BSCTV) into Arabidopsis under a conditional expression promoter; the resulting overexpression of BSCTV C4 led to abnormal host cell division. RKP, a RING finger protein, which is a homolog of the human cell cycle regulator KPC1, was discovered to be induced by BSCTV C4 protein. Mutation of RKP reduced the susceptibility to BSCTV in Arabidopsis and impaired BSCTV replication in plant cells. Callus formation is impaired in rkp mutants, indicating a role of RKP in the plant cell cycle. RKP was demonstrated to be a functional ubiquitin E3 ligase and is able to interact with cell-cycle inhibitor ICK/KRP proteins in vitro. Accumulation of the protein ICK2/KRP2 was found increased in the rkp mutant. The above results strengthen the possibility that RKP might regulate the degradation of ICK/KRP proteins. In addition, the protein level of ICK2/KRP2 was decreased upon BSCTV infection. Overexpression of ICK1/KRP1 in Arabidopsis could reduce the susceptibility to BSCTV. In conclusion, we found that RKP is induced by BSCTV C4 and may affect BSCTV infection by regulating the host cell cycle. PMID:19000158

  7. Root zone temperature affects the phytoextraction of Ba, Cl, Sn, Pt, and Rb using potato plants (Solanum tuberosum L. var. Spunta) in the field.

    PubMed

    Baghour, M; Moreno, D A; Víllora, G; Hernández, J; Castilla, N; Romero, L

    2002-01-01

    Three consecutive years of field experiments were conducted to investigate how different root-zone temperatures, manipulated by using different mulches, affect the phytoextraction of Ba, Cl, Sn, Pt and Rb in different organs of potato plants (roots, tubers, stems and leaves). Four different plastic covers were used (T1: transparent polyethylene; T2: white polyethylene; T3: white and black coextruded polyethylene, and T4: black polyethylene), using uncovered plants as control (T0). The different treatments had a significant effect on mean root zone temperatures (T0 = 16 degrees C, T1 = 20 degrees C, T2 = 23 degrees C, T3 = 27 degrees C and T4 = 30 degrees C) and induced a significantly different response in Ba, Cl, Sn, Pt and Rb concentration and accumulation. The T3 treatment gave rise to the greatest phytoextraction of Ba, Pt, Cl and Sn in the roots, leaflets and tubers. In terms of the relative distribution of the phytoaccumulated elements (as percentage of the total within the plant), Pt and Ba accumulated mainly in the roots whereas Rb, Sn and Cl accumulated primarily in tubers, establishing a close relationship between the biomass development of each organ and phytoaccumulation capacity of metals in response to temperature in the root zone. PMID:11846271

  8. Ecologically relevant UV-B dose combined with high PAR intensity distinctly affect plant growth and accumulation of secondary metabolites in leaves of Centella asiatica L. Urban.

    PubMed

    Müller, Viola; Albert, Andreas; Barbro Winkler, J; Lankes, Christa; Noga, Georg; Hunsche, Mauricio

    2013-10-01

    We investigated the effects of environmentally relevant dose of ultraviolet (UV)-B and photosynthetic active radiation (PAR) on saponin accumulation in leaves on the example of Centella asiatica L. Urban. For this purpose, plants were exposed to one of four light regimes i.e., two PAR intensities with or without UV-B radiation. The experiment was conducted in technically complex sun simulators under almost natural irradiance and climatic conditions. As observed, UV-B radiation increased herb and leaf production as well as the content of epidermal flavonols, which was monitored by non-destructive fluorescence measurements. Specific fluorescence indices also indicate an increase in the content of anthocyanins under high PAR; this increase was likewise observed for the saponin concentrations. In contrast, UV-B radiation had no distinct effects on saponin and sapogenin concentrations. Our findings suggest that besides flavonoids, also saponins were accumulated under high PAR protecting the plant from oxidative damage. Furthermore, glycosylation of sapogenins seems to be important either for the protective function and/or for compartmentalization of the compounds. Moreover, our study revealed that younger leaves contain higher amounts of saponins, while in older leaves the sapogenins were the most abundant constituents. Concluding, our results proof that ambient dose of UV-B and high PAR intensity distinctly affect the accumulation of flavonoids and saponins, enabling the plant tissue to adapt to the light conditions. PMID:24044900

  9. Computational and genetic evidence that different structural conformations of a non-catalytic region affect the function of plant cellulose synthase

    PubMed Central

    Slabaugh, Erin; Sethaphong, Latsavongsakda; Xiao, Chaowen; Amick, Joshua; Anderson, Charles T.; Haigler, Candace H.; Yingling, Yaroslava G.

    2014-01-01

    The β-1,4-glucan chains comprising cellulose are synthesized by cellulose synthases in the plasma membranes of diverse organisms including bacteria and plants. Understanding structure–function relationships in the plant enzymes involved in cellulose synthesis (CESAs) is important because cellulose is the most abundant component in the plant cell wall, a key renewable biomaterial. Here, we explored the structure and function of the region encompassing transmembrane helices (TMHs) 5 and 6 in CESA using computational and genetic tools. Ab initio computational structure prediction revealed novel bi-modal structural conformations of the region between TMH5 and 6 that may affect CESA function. Here we present our computational findings on this region in three CESAs of Arabidopsis thaliana (AtCESA1, 3, and 6), the Atcesa3 ixr1-2 mutant, and a novel missense mutation in AtCESA1. A newly engineered point mutation in AtCESA1 (Atcesa1 F954L) that altered the structural conformation in silico resulted in a protein that was not fully functional in the temperature-sensitive Atcesa1 rsw1-1 mutant at the restrictive temperature. The combination of computational and genetic results provides evidence that the ability of the TMH5–6 region to adopt specific structural conformations is important for CESA function. PMID:25262226

  10. Identification of a new virulence locus in Agrobacterium tumefaciens that affects polysaccharide composition and plant cell attachment.

    PubMed

    Thomashow, M F; Karlinsey, J E; Marks, J R; Hurlbert, R E

    1987-07-01

    We have identified a new virulence locus in Agrobacterium tumefaciens. Strains carrying Tn5 inserts at this locus could not incite tumors on Kalanchoe daigremontiana, Nicotiana rustica, tobacco, or sunflower and had severely attenuated virulence on carrot disks. We termed the locus pscA, because the mutants that defined the locus were initially isolated as having an altered polysaccharide composition; they were nonfluorescent on media containing Leucophor or Calcofluor, indicating a defect in the production of cellulose fibrils. Further analysis showed that the pscA mutants produced little, if any, of the four species of exopolysaccharide synthesized by the wild-type strain. DNA hybridization analysis and genetic complementation experiments indicated that the pscA locus is not encoded by the Ti plasmid and that it is distinct from the previously described chromosomal virulence loci chvA and chvB. However, like chvA and chvB mutants, the inability of the pscA mutants to form tumors is apparently due to a defect in plant cell attachment. Whereas we could demonstrate binding of the wild-type strain to tobacco suspension cells, attachment of the pscA mutants was drastically reduced or completely absent. PMID:3597321

  11. RNA Recognition Motif-Containing Protein ORRM4 Broadly Affects Mitochondrial RNA Editing and Impacts Plant Development and Flowering1[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Germain, Arnaud

    2016-01-01

    Plant RNA editosomes modify cytidines (C) to uridines (U) at specific sites in plastid and mitochondrial transcripts. Members of the RNA-editing factor interacting protein (RIP) family and Organelle RNA Recognition Motif-containing (ORRM) family are essential components of the Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) editosome. ORRM2 and ORRM3 have been recently identified as minor mitochondrial editing factors whose silencing reduces editing efficiency at ∼6% of the mitochondrial C targets. Here we report the identification of ORRM4 (for organelle RRM protein 4) as a novel, major mitochondrial editing factor that controls ∼44% of the mitochondrial editing sites. C-to-U conversion is reduced, but not eliminated completely, at the affected sites. The orrm4 mutant exhibits slower growth and delayed flowering time. ORRM4 affects editing in a site-specific way, though orrm4 mutation affects editing of the entire transcript of certain genes. ORRM4 contains an RRM domain at the N terminus and a Gly-rich domain at the C terminus. The RRM domain provides the editing activity of ORRM4, whereas the Gly-rich domain is required for its interaction with ORRM3 and with itself. The presence of ORRM4 in the editosome is further supported by its interaction with RIP1 in a bimolecular fluorescence complementation assay. The identification of ORRM4 as a major mitochondrial editing factor further expands our knowledge of the composition of the RNA editosome and reveals that adequate mitochondrial editing is necessary for normal plant development. PMID:26578708

  12. Effect of radiocesium transfer on ambient dose rate in forest environments affected by the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant accident

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kato, H.

    2015-12-01

    We investigated the transfer of canopy-intercepted radiocesium to the forest floor during 3 years following the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant accident. The cesium-137 (Cs-137) contents in throughfall, stemflow, and litterfall were monitored in two coniferous stands (plantation of Japanese cedar) and a deciduous broad-leaved forest stand (Japanese oak with red pine). We also measured the ambient dose rate (ADR) at different heights in the forest using a survey meter and a portable Ge gamma-ray detector. Total Cs-137 deposition flux from the canopy to forest floor for the mature cedar, young cedar, and the mixed broad-leaved stands were 166 kBq/m2, 174 kBq/m2, and 60 kBq/m2, respectively. These values correspond to 38%, 40% and 13% of total atmospheric input after the accident. The ambient dose rate in forest exhibited height dependency and its vertical distribution varied with forest type and stand age. The ambient dose rate showed an exponential decrease with time for all the forest sites, however the decreasing trend differed depending on the height of dose measurement and forest type. The ambient dose rate at the canopy (approx. 10 m-height) decreased faster than that expected from physical decay of the two radiocesium isotopes, whereas those at the forest floor varied between the three forest stands. The radiocesium deposition via throughfall seemed to increase ambient dose rate during the first 200 days after the accident, however there was no clear relationship between litterfall and ambient dose rate since 400 days after the accident. These data suggested that the ambient dose rate in forest environment varied both spatially and temporally reflecting the transfer of radiocesium from canopy to forest floor. However, further monitoring investigation and analysis are required to determine the effect of litterfall on long-term trend of ambient dose rate in forest environments.

  13. Analysis on radiocesium concentration in rivers that have catchment areas affected by the fallout from Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Taniguchi, Keisuke; Yoshimura, Kazuya; Sakaguchi, Aya; Yamamoto, Masayoshi; Onda, Yuichi

    2014-05-01

    Due to Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant accident, radioactive materials including Cs-134 and Cs-137 were widely distributed in surrounded area. The radiocesiums have been transported in river networks. This study showed the monitoring results of radiocesium concentration in river waters and suspended sediments in Abukuma river basin and smaller coastal river catchments. The monitoring started at 6 sites from June 2011. Subsequently, additional 24 monitoring sites were installed between October 2012 and January 2013. Flow and turbidity (for calculation of suspended sediment concentration) were measured at each site, while suspended sediments and river water were collected every one or half month to measure Cs-134 and Cs-137 activity concentrations by gamma spectrometry. Activity concentrations of Cs-134 and Cs- 137 on suspended sediments were generally decreasing at all sites. The decreasing rate changed lower at about one year later from the accident. Activity concentration in river waters also showed the same tendency although there are only few data within 1 year from the accident. Activity concentrations measured at the same day are proportional to the mean catchment inventory. Therefore, the activity concentration can be normalized by the mean catchment inventory. The normalized activity can be fitted to following double exponential function: [At] = 1.551 exp (-5.265t) + 0.069 exp (-0.266 t), where t [year] is the time from the accident. There is no time evolution of Kd between suspended sediments and river water. Instead, Kd was varied spatially. Although the reason of the spatial variation is not clear for now, geology of the catchment (i.e. mineral composition of suspended particles) seems to relate to the variation.

  14. Evaluation of dose from external irradiation for individuals living in areas affected by the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Plant accident.

    PubMed

    Naito, Wataru; Uesaka, Motoki; Yamada, Chie; Ishii, Hideki

    2015-02-01

    In order to effectively and appropriately manage external radiation doses in the affected areas of Fukushima, it is important to identify when, where and how much exposure occurred. It is also necessary to quantitatively measure external exposure and air dose rates for different activity patterns in individuals living and working in Japanese-style buildings. The authors used a new personal dosemeter (D-shuttle) along with a global positioning system and geographical information system to relate personal dose rate with activity patterns and air dose rate. Hourly individual doses obtained by D-shuttle can provide an effective communication tool for those who want to identify when and how much exposure occurs. Personal monitoring of 26 volunteers showed that personal doses obtained from D-shuttle were ∼30% of cumulative air dose estimated by data from the airborne monitoring survey. This analysis showed that, for most study volunteers, the exposure from staying at home represented about half of the total cumulative dose. This suggests that even though the peak exposure doses may be observed outside of working hours, to develop appropriate countermeasures for external dose reduction, it is thus important to identify the contributions of individuals' time-activities. This study provides a valuable basis for developing a realistic and pragmatic method to estimate external doses of individuals in Fukushima. PMID:24982262

  15. Integration of Andrographis paniculata as Potential Medicinal Plant in Chir Pine (Pinus roxburghii Sarg.) Plantation of North-Western Himalaya

    PubMed Central

    Sanwal, Chandra Shekher; Bhardwaj, S. D.

    2016-01-01

    The integration of Andrographis paniculata under Pinus roxburghii (Chir pine) plantation has been studied to evaluate the growth and yield for its economic viability and conservation. It was grown on three topographical aspects, namely, northern, north-western, and western, at a spacing of 30 cm × 30 cm, followed by three tillage depths, namely, minimum (0 cm), medium (up to 10 cm), and deep (up to 15 cm) tillage. The growth parameters, namely, plant height and number of branches per plant, were recorded as significantly higher on western aspect and lowest on northern aspect except for leaf area index which was found nonsignificant. However under all tillage practices all the growth parameters in both understorey and open conditions were found to be nonsignificant except for plant height which was found to be significantly highest under deep tillage and lowest under minimum tillage. The study of net returns for Andrographis paniculata revealed that it had positive average annual returns even in understorey conditions which indicate its possible economic viability under integration of Chir pine plantations. Hence net returns can be enhanced by integrating Andrographis paniculata and this silvimedicinal system can be suggested which will help utilizing an unutilized part of land and increase total productivity from such lands besides conservation of the A. paniculata in situ. PMID:27563482

  16. Integration of Andrographis paniculata as Potential Medicinal Plant in Chir Pine (Pinus roxburghii Sarg.) Plantation of North-Western Himalaya.

    PubMed

    Sanwal, Chandra Shekher; Kumar, Raj; Bhardwaj, S D

    2016-01-01

    The integration of Andrographis paniculata under Pinus roxburghii (Chir pine) plantation has been studied to evaluate the growth and yield for its economic viability and conservation. It was grown on three topographical aspects, namely, northern, north-western, and western, at a spacing of 30 cm × 30 cm, followed by three tillage depths, namely, minimum (0 cm), medium (up to 10 cm), and deep (up to 15 cm) tillage. The growth parameters, namely, plant height and number of branches per plant, were recorded as significantly higher on western aspect and lowest on northern aspect except for leaf area index which was found nonsignificant. However under all tillage practices all the growth parameters in both understorey and open conditions were found to be nonsignificant except for plant height which was found to be significantly highest under deep tillage and lowest under minimum tillage. The study of net returns for Andrographis paniculata revealed that it had positive average annual returns even in understorey conditions which indicate its possible economic viability under integration of Chir pine plantations. Hence net returns can be enhanced by integrating Andrographis paniculata and this silvimedicinal system can be suggested which will help utilizing an unutilized part of land and increase total productivity from such lands besides conservation of the A. paniculata in situ. PMID:27563482

  17. Decrease in Available Soil Water Storage Capacity Reduces Vitality of Young Understorey European Beeches (Fagus sylvatica L.)—A Case Study from the Black Forest, Germany

    PubMed Central

    Chakraborty, Tamalika; Saha, Somidh; Reif, Albert

    2013-01-01

    Growth and survival of young European beech (Fagus sylvatica L.) is largely dependent on water availability. We quantified the influence of water stress (measured as Available Soil Water Storage Capacity or ASWSC) on vitality of young beech plants at a dry site. The study site was located in a semi-natural sessile oak (Quercus petraea (Mattuschka) Liebl.) stand adjacent to beech stands on a rocky gneiss outcrop in southwestern Germany. Plant vitality was measured as crown dieback and estimated by the percentage of dead above ground biomass. The magnitude of crown dieback was recorded in different vertical parts of the crown. Biomass was calculated from the harvested plants following allometric regression equations specifically developed for our study site. Stem discs from harvested plants were used for growth analysis. We found that soil depth up to bedrock and skeleton content significantly influenced ASWSC at the study site. A significant negative correlation between ASWSC and crown dieback was found. Highest rates of crown dieback were noticed in the middle and lower crown. The threshold of crown dieback as a function of drought stress for young beech plants was calculated for the first time in this study. This threshold of crown dieback was found to be 40% of above ground biomass. Beyond 40% crown dieback, plants eventually experienced complete mortality. In addition, we found that the extremely dry year of 2003 significantly hampered growth (basal area increment) of plants in dry plots (ASWSC < 61 mm) in the study area. Recovery in the plants’ radial growth after that drought year was significantly higher in less dry plots (ASWSC > 61 mm) than in dry plots. We concluded that a decrease in ASWSC impeded the vitality of young beech causing partial up to complete crown dieback in the study site. PMID:27137398

  18. Vertical distribution of radiocesium in soils of the area affected by the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant accident

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Konoplev, A. V.; Golosov, V. N.; Yoschenko, V. I.; Nanba, K.; Onda, Y.; Takase, T.; Wakiyama, Y.

    2016-05-01

    Presented are results of the study of radiocesium vertical distribution in the soils of the irrigation pond catchments in the near field 0.25 to 8 km from the Fukushima Dai-ichi NPP, on sections of the Niida River floodplain, and in a forest ecosystem typical of the territory contaminated after the accident. It is shown that the vertical migration of radiocesium in undisturbed forest and grassland soils in the zone affected by the Fukushima accident is faster than it was in the soils of the 30-km zone of the Chernobyl NPP for a similar time interval after the accident. The effective dispersion coefficients in the Fukushima soils are several times higher than those for the Chernobyl soils. This may be associated with higher annual precipitation (by about 2.5 times) in Fukushima as compared to the Chernobyl zone. In the forest soils the radiocesium dispersion is faster as compared to grassland soils, both in the Fukushima and Chernobyl zones. The study and analysis of the vertical distribution of the Fukushima origin radiocesium in the Niida gawa floodplain soils has made it possible to identify areas of contaminated sediment accumulation on the floodplain. The average accumulation rate for sediments at the study locations on the Niida gawa floodplain varied from 0.3 to 3.3 cm/year. Taking into account the sediments accumulation leading to an increase in the radiocesium inventory in alluvial soils is key for predicting redistribution of radioactive contamination after the Fukushima accident on the river catchments, as well as for decision-making on contaminated territories remediation and clean-up. Clean-up of alluvial soils does not seem to be worthwhile because of the following accumulation of contaminated sediments originating from more contaminated areas, including the exclusion zone.

  19. Temperature and Plant Genotype Alter Alkaloid Concentrations in Ryegrass Infected with an Epichloë Endophyte and This Affects an Insect Herbivore.

    PubMed

    Hennessy, Louise M; Popay, Alison J; Finch, Sarah C; Clearwater, Michael J; Cave, Vanessa M

    2016-01-01

    Asexual Epichloë endophytes colonize agricultural forage grasses in a relationship which is mutually beneficial and provides the host plant with protection against herbivorous insects. The endophyte strain AR37 (Epichloë festucae var. lolii) produces epoxy-janthitrem alkaloids and is the only endophyte known to provide ryegrass with resistance against porina larvae (Wiseana cervinata (Walker)), a major pasture pest in cooler areas of New Zealand. This study examined the effect of temperature on concentrations of epoxy-janthitrems in AR37-infected ryegrass and determined how the resulting variations in concentration affected consumption, growth and survival of porina larvae. Twenty replicate pairs of perennial (Lolium perenne L.) and Italian ryegrass (L. multiflorum Lam.) plants with and without endophyte were prepared by cloning, with one of each pair grown at either high (20°C) or low (7°C) temperature. After 10 weeks, herbage on each plant was harvested, divided into leaf and pseudostem, then freeze dried and ground. Leaf and pseudostem material was then incorporated separately into semi-synthetic diets which were fed to porina larvae in a bioassay over 3 weeks. Epoxy-janthitrem concentrations within the plant materials and the semi-synthetic diets were analyzed by high performance liquid chromatography. AR37-infected ryegrass grown at high temperature contained high in planta concentrations of epoxy-janthitrem (30.6 μg/g in leaves and 83.9 μg/g in pseudostems) that had a strong anti-feedant effect on porina larvae when incorporated into their diets, reducing their survival by 25-42% on pseudostems. In comparison, in planta epoxy-janthitrem concentrations in AR37-infected ryegrass grown at low temperature were very low (0.67 μg/g in leaves and 7.4 μg/g in pseudostems) resulting in a small anti-feedant effect in perennial but not in Italian ryegrass. Although alkaloid concentrations were greatly reduced by low temperature this reduction did not occur until

  20. Temperature and Plant Genotype Alter Alkaloid Concentrations in Ryegrass Infected with an Epichloë Endophyte and This Affects an Insect Herbivore

    PubMed Central

    Hennessy, Louise M.; Popay, Alison J.; Finch, Sarah C.; Clearwater, Michael J.; Cave, Vanessa M.

    2016-01-01

    Asexual Epichloë endophytes colonize agricultural forage grasses in a relationship which is mutually beneficial and provides the host plant with protection against herbivorous insects. The endophyte strain AR37 (Epichloë festucae var. lolii) produces epoxy-janthitrem alkaloids and is the only endophyte known to provide ryegrass with resistance against porina larvae (Wiseana cervinata (Walker)), a major pasture pest in cooler areas of New Zealand. This study examined the effect of temperature on concentrations of epoxy-janthitrems in AR37-infected ryegrass and determined how the resulting variations in concentration affected consumption, growth and survival of porina larvae. Twenty replicate pairs of perennial (Lolium perenne L.) and Italian ryegrass (L. multiflorum Lam.) plants with and without endophyte were prepared by cloning, with one of each pair grown at either high (20°C) or low (7°C) temperature. After 10 weeks, herbage on each plant was harvested, divided into leaf and pseudostem, then freeze dried and ground. Leaf and pseudostem material was then incorporated separately into semi-synthetic diets which were fed to porina larvae in a bioassay over 3 weeks. Epoxy-janthitrem concentrations within the plant materials and the semi-synthetic diets were analyzed by high performance liquid chromatography. AR37-infected ryegrass grown at high temperature contained high in planta concentrations of epoxy-janthitrem (30.6 μg/g in leaves and 83.9 μg/g in pseudostems) that had a strong anti-feedant effect on porina larvae when incorporated into their diets, reducing their survival by 25–42% on pseudostems. In comparison, in planta epoxy-janthitrem concentrations in AR37-infected ryegrass grown at low temperature were very low (0.67 μg/g in leaves and 7.4 μg/g in pseudostems) resulting in a small anti-feedant effect in perennial but not in Italian ryegrass. Although alkaloid concentrations were greatly reduced by low temperature this reduction did not occur

  1. A comprehensive dose evaluation project concerning animals affected by the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant accident: its set-up and progress.

    PubMed

    Takahashi, Shintaro; Inoue, Kazuya; Suzuki, Masatoshi; Urushihara, Yusuke; Kuwahara, Yoshikazu; Hayashi, Gohei; Shiga, Soichiro; Fukumoto, Motoi; Kino, Yasushi; Sekine, Tsutomu; Abe, Yasuyuki; Fukuda, Tomokazu; Isogai, Emiko; Yamashiro, Hideaki; Fukumoto, Manabu

    2015-12-01

    It is not an exaggeration to say that, without nuclear accidents or the analysis of radiation therapy, there is no way in which we are able to quantify radiation effects on humans. Therefore, the livestock abandoned in the ex-evacuation zone and euthanized due to the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant (FNPP) accident are extremely valuable for analyzing the environmental pollution, its biodistribution, the metabolism of radionuclides, dose evaluation and the influence of internal exposure. We, therefore, sought to establish an archive system and to open it to researchers for increasing our understanding of radiation biology and improving protection against radiation. The sample bank of animals affected by the FNPP accident consists of frozen tissue samples, formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded specimens, dose of radionuclides deposited, etc., with individual sampling data. PMID:26687285

  2. A comprehensive dose evaluation project concerning animals affected by the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant accident: its set-up and progress

    PubMed Central

    Takahashi, Shintaro; Inoue, Kazuya; Suzuki, Masatoshi; Urushihara, Yusuke; Kuwahara, Yoshikazu; Hayashi, Gohei; Shiga, Soichiro; Fukumoto, Motoi; Kino, Yasushi; Sekine, Tsutomu; Abe, Yasuyuki; Fukuda, Tomokazu; Isogai, Emiko; Yamashiro, Hideaki; Fukumoto, Manabu

    2015-01-01

    It is not an exaggeration to say that, without nuclear accidents or the analysis of radiation therapy, there is no way in which we are able to quantify radiation effects on humans. Therefore, the livestock abandoned in the ex-evacuation zone and euthanized due to the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant (FNPP) accident are extremely valuable for analyzing the environmental pollution, its biodistribution, the metabolism of radionuclides, dose evaluation and the influence of internal exposure. We, therefore, sought to establish an archive system and to open it to researchers for increasing our understanding of radiation biology and improving protection against radiation. The sample bank of animals affected by the FNPP accident consists of frozen tissue samples, formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded specimens, dose of radionuclides deposited, etc., with individual sampling data. PMID:26687285

  3. Distribution of polychlorinated biphenyls in an urban riparian zone affected by wastewater treatment plant effluent and the transfer to terrestrial compartment by invertebrates.

    PubMed

    Yu, Junchao; Wang, Thanh; Han, Shanlong; Wang, Pu; Zhang, Qinghua; Jiang, Guibin

    2013-10-01

    In this study, we investigated the distribution of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in a riparian zone affected by the effluent from a wastewater treatment plant (WWTP). River water, sediment, aquatic invertebrates and samples from the surrounding terrestrial compartment such as soil, reed plants and several land based invertebrates were collected. A relatively narrow range of δ(13)C values was found among most invertebrates (except butterflies, grasshoppers), indicating a similar energy source. The highest concentration of total PCBs was observed in zooplankton (151.1 ng/g lipid weight), and soil dwelling invertebrates showed higher concentrations than phytophagous insects at the riparian zone. The endobenthic oligochaete Tubifex tubifex (54.28 ng/g lw) might be a useful bioindicator of WWTP derived PCBs contamination. High bioaccumulation factors (BAFs) were observed in collected aquatic invertebrates, although the biota-sediment/soil accumulation factors (BSAF) remained relatively low. Emerging aquatic insects such as chironomids could carry waterborne PCBs to the terrestrial compartment via their lifecycles. The estimated annual flux of PCBs for chironomids ranged from 0.66 to 265 ng⋅m(-2)⋅y(-1). Although a high prevalence of PCB-11 and PCB-28 was found for most aquatic based samples in this riparian zone, the mid-chlorinated congeners (e.g. PCB-153 and PCB-138) became predominant among chironomids and dragonflies as well as soil dwelling invertebrates, which might suggest a selective biodriven transfer of different PCB congeners. PMID:23811358

  4. Identification of detoxification pathways in plants that are regulated in response to treatment with organic compounds isolated from oil sands process-affected water.

    PubMed

    Widdup, Ellen E; Chatfield-Reed, Kate; Henry, Darren; Chua, Gordon; Samuel, Marcus A; Muench, Douglas G

    2015-11-01

    Bitumen mining in the Athabasca oil sands region of northern Alberta results in the accumulation of large volumes of oil sands process-affected water (OSPW). The acid-extractable organic (AEO) fraction of OSPW contains a variety of compounds, including naphthenic acids, aromatics, and sulfur- and nitrogen-containing compounds that are toxic to aquatic and terrestrial organisms. We have studied the effect of AEO treatment on the transcriptome of root and shoot tissues in seedlings of the model plant, Arabidopsis thaliana. Several genes encoding enzymes involved in the xenobiotic detoxification pathway were upregulated, including cytochrome P450s (CYPs), UDP-dependent glycosyltransferases (UGTs), glutathione-S-transferases (GSTs), and membrane transporters. In addition, gene products involved in oxidative stress, β-oxidation, and glucosinolate degradation were also upregulated, indicating other potential mechanisms of the adaptive response to AEO exposure. These results provide insight into the pathways that plants use to detoxify the organic acid component of OSPW. Moreover, this study advances our understanding of genes that could be exploited to potentially develop phytoremediation and biosensing strategies for AEO contaminants resulting from oil sands mining. PMID:26052061

  5. Arabidopsis BPM Proteins Function as Substrate Adaptors to a CULLIN3-Based E3 Ligase to Affect Fatty Acid Metabolism in Plants[W

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Liyuan; Lee, Joo Hyun; Weber, Henriette; Tohge, Takayuki; Witt, Sandra; Roje, Sanja; Fernie, Alisdair R.; Hellmann, Hanjo

    2013-01-01

    Regulation of transcriptional processes is a critical mechanism that enables efficient coordination of the synthesis of required proteins in response to environmental and cellular changes. Transcription factors require accurate activity regulation because they play a critical role as key mediators assuring specific expression of target genes. In this work, we show that CULLIN3-based E3 ligases have the potential to interact with a broad range of ETHYLENE RESPONSE FACTOR (ERF)/APETALA2 (AP2) transcription factors, mediated by MATH-BTB/POZ (for Meprin and TRAF [tumor necrosis factor receptor associated factor] homolog)-Broad complex, Tramtrack, Bric-a-brac/Pox virus and Zinc finger) proteins. The assembly with an E3 ligase causes degradation of their substrates via the 26S proteasome, as demonstrated for the WRINKLED1 ERF/AP2 protein. Furthermore, loss of MATH-BTB/POZ proteins widely affects plant development and causes altered fatty acid contents in mutant seeds. Overall, this work demonstrates a link between fatty acid metabolism and E3 ligase activities in plants and establishes CUL3-based E3 ligases as key regulators in transcriptional processes that involve ERF/AP2 family members. PMID:23792371

  6. Thermal effects on microbial composition and microbiologically induced corrosion and mineral precipitation affecting operation of a geothermal plant in a deep saline aquifer.

    PubMed

    Lerm, Stephanie; Westphal, Anke; Miethling-Graff, Rona; Alawi, Mashal; Seibt, Andrea; Wolfgramm, Markus; Würdemann, Hilke

    2013-03-01

    The microbial diversity of a deep saline aquifer used for geothermal heat storage in the North German Basin was investigated. Genetic fingerprinting analyses revealed distinct microbial communities in fluids produced from the cold and warm side of the aquifer. Direct cell counting and quantification of 16S rRNA genes and dissimilatory sulfite reductase (dsrA) genes by real-time PCR proved different population sizes in fluids, showing higher abundance of bacteria and sulfate reducing bacteria (SRB) in cold fluids compared with warm fluids. The operation-dependent temperature increase at the warm well probably enhanced organic matter availability, favoring the growth of fermentative bacteria and SRB in the topside facility after the reduction of fluid temperature. In the cold well, SRB predominated and probably accounted for corrosion damage to the submersible well pump and iron sulfide precipitates in the near wellbore area and topside facility filters. This corresponded to lower sulfate content in fluids produced from the cold well as well as higher content of hydrogen gas that was probably released from corrosion, and maybe favored growth of hydrogenotrophic SRB. This study reflects the high influence of microbial populations for geothermal plant operation, because microbiologically induced precipitative and corrosive processes adversely affect plant reliability. PMID:23358731

  7. Low Night Temperature Affects the Phloem Ultrastructure of Lateral Branches and Raffinose Family Oligosaccharide (RFO) Accumulation in RFO-Transporting Plant Melon (Cucumismelo L.) during Fruit Expansion

    PubMed Central

    Hao, Jinghong; Gu, Fengying; Zhu, Jie; Lu, Shaowei; Liu, Yifei; Li, Yunfei; Chen, Weizhi; Wang, Liping; Fan, Shuangxi; Xian, Cory J.

    2016-01-01

    Due to the importance and complexity of photo assimilate transport in raffinose family oligosaccharide (RFO)-transporting plants such as melon, it is important to study the features of the transport structure (phloem) particularly of the lateral branches connecting the source leaves and the sink fruits, and its responses to environmental challenges. Currently, it is unclear to what extents the cold environmental temperature stress would alter the phloem ultrastructure and RFO accumulation in RFO-transporting plants. In this study, we firstly utilized electron microscopy to investigate the changes in the phloem ultrastructure of lateral branches and RFO accumulation in melons after being subjected to low night temperatures (12°C and 9°C). The results demonstrated that exposure to 9°C and 12°C altered the ultrastructure of the phloem, with the effect of 9°C being more obvious. The most obvious change was the appearance of plasma membrane invaginations in 99% companion cells and intermediary cells. In addition, phloem parenchyma cells contained chloroplasts with increased amounts of starch grains, sparse cytoplasm and reduced numbers of mitochondria. In the intermediary cells, the volume of cytoplasm was reduced by 50%, and the central vacuole was present. Moreover, the treatment at 9°C during the night led to RFO accumulation in the vascular bundles of the lateral branches and fruit carpopodiums. These ultrastructural changes of the transport structure (phloem) following the treatment at 9°C represented adaptive responses of melons to low temperature stresses. Future studies are required to examine whether these responses may affect phloem transport. PMID:27501301

  8. Co-localisation of host plant resistance QTLs affecting the performance and feeding behaviour of the aphid Myzus persicae in the peach tree

    PubMed Central

    Sauge, M-H; Lambert, P; Pascal, T

    2012-01-01

    The architecture and action of quantitative trait loci (QTL) contributing to plant resistance mechanisms against aphids, the largest group of phloem-feeding insects, are not well understood. Comparative mapping of several components of resistance to the green peach aphid (Myzus persicae) was undertaken in Prunus davidiana, a wild species related to peach. An interspecific F1 population of Prunus persica var. Summergrand × P. davidiana clone P1908 was scored for resistance (aphid colony development and foliar damage) and 17 aphid feeding behaviour traits monitored by means of the electrical penetration graph technique. Seven resistance QTLs were detected, individually explaining 6.1–43.1% of the phenotypic variation. Consistency was shown over several trials. Nine QTLs affecting aphid feeding behaviour were identified. All resistance QTLs except one co-located with QTLs underlying aphid feeding behaviour. A P. davidiana resistance allele at the major QTL was associated with drastic reductions in phloem sap ingestion by aphids, suggesting a phloem-based resistance mechanism. Resistance was also positively correlated with aphid salivation into sieve elements, suggesting an insect response to restore the appropriate conditions for ingestion after phloem occlusion. No significant QTL was found for traits characterising aphid mouthpart activity in plant tissues other than phloem vessels. Two QTLs with effects on aphid feeding behaviour but without effect on resistance were identified. SSR markers linked to the main QTLs involved in resistance are of potential use in marker-assisted selection for aphid resistance. Linking our results with the recent sequencing of the peach genome may help clarify the physiological resistance mechanisms. PMID:21897441

  9. Low Night Temperature Affects the Phloem Ultrastructure of Lateral Branches and Raffinose Family Oligosaccharide (RFO) Accumulation in RFO-Transporting Plant Melon (Cucumismelo L.) during Fruit Expansion.

    PubMed

    Hao, Jinghong; Gu, Fengying; Zhu, Jie; Lu, Shaowei; Liu, Yifei; Li, Yunfei; Chen, Weizhi; Wang, Liping; Fan, Shuangxi; Xian, Cory J

    2016-01-01

    Due to the importance and complexity of photo assimilate transport in raffinose family oligosaccharide (RFO)-transporting plants such as melon, it is important to study the features of the transport structure (phloem) particularly of the lateral branches connecting the source leaves and the sink fruits, and its responses to environmental challenges. Currently, it is unclear to what extents the cold environmental temperature stress would alter the phloem ultrastructure and RFO accumulation in RFO-transporting plants. In this study, we firstly utilized electron microscopy to investigate the changes in the phloem ultrastructure of lateral branches and RFO accumulation in melons after being subjected to low night temperatures (12°C and 9°C). The results demonstrated that exposure to 9°C and 12°C altered the ultrastructure of the phloem, with the effect of 9°C being more obvious. The most obvious change was the appearance of plasma membrane invaginations in 99% companion cells and intermediary cells. In addition, phloem parenchyma cells contained chloroplasts with increased amounts of starch grains, sparse cytoplasm and reduced numbers of mitochondria. In the intermediary cells, the volume of cytoplasm was reduced by 50%, and the central vacuole was present. Moreover, the treatment at 9°C during the night led to RFO accumulation in the vascular bundles of the lateral branches and fruit carpopodiums. These ultrastructural changes of the transport structure (phloem) following the treatment at 9°C represented adaptive responses of melons to low temperature stresses. Future studies are required to examine whether these responses may affect phloem transport. PMID:27501301

  10. Identification of Plants That Inhibit Lipid Droplet Formation in Liver Cells: Rubus suavissimus Leaf Extract Protects Mice from High-Fat Diet-Induced Fatty Liver by Directly Affecting Liver Cells

    PubMed Central

    Takahashi, Tomohiro; Sugawara, Wataru; Takiguchi, Yuya; Takizawa, Kento; Nakabayashi, Ami; Nakamura, Mitsuo; Nagano-Ito, Michiyo; Ichikawa, Shinichi

    2016-01-01

    Fatty liver disease is a condition in which abnormally large numbers of lipid droplets accumulate in liver cells. Fatty liver disease induces inflammation under conditions of oxidative stress and may result in cancer. To identify plants that protect against fatty liver disease, we examined the inhibitory effects of plant extracts on lipid droplet formation in mouse hepatoma cells. A screen of 98 water extracts of plants revealed 4 extracts with inhibitory effects. One of these extracts, Rubus suavissimus S. Lee (Tien-cha or Chinese sweet tea) leaf extract, which showed strong inhibitory effects, was tested in a mouse fatty liver model. In these mouse experiments, intake of the plant extract significantly protected mice against fatty liver disease without affecting body weight gain. Our results suggest that RSE directly affects liver cells and protects them from fatty liver disease. PMID:27429636

  11. Identification of Plants That Inhibit Lipid Droplet Formation in Liver Cells: Rubus suavissimus Leaf Extract Protects Mice from High-Fat Diet-Induced Fatty Liver by Directly Affecting Liver Cells.

    PubMed

    Takahashi, Tomohiro; Sugawara, Wataru; Takiguchi, Yuya; Takizawa, Kento; Nakabayashi, Ami; Nakamura, Mitsuo; Nagano-Ito, Michiyo; Ichikawa, Shinichi

    2016-01-01

    Fatty liver disease is a condition in which abnormally large numbers of lipid droplets accumulate in liver cells. Fatty liver disease induces inflammation under conditions of oxidative stress and may result in cancer. To identify plants that protect against fatty liver disease, we examined the inhibitory effects of plant extracts on lipid droplet formation in mouse hepatoma cells. A screen of 98 water extracts of plants revealed 4 extracts with inhibitory effects. One of these extracts, Rubus suavissimus S. Lee (Tien-cha or Chinese sweet tea) leaf extract, which showed strong inhibitory effects, was tested in a mouse fatty liver model. In these mouse experiments, intake of the plant extract significantly protected mice against fatty liver disease without affecting body weight gain. Our results suggest that RSE directly affects liver cells and protects them from fatty liver disease. PMID:27429636

  12. Evolution of Linked Avirulence Effectors in Leptosphaeria maculans Is Affected by Genomic Environment and Exposure to Resistance Genes in Host Plants

    PubMed Central

    Van de Wouw, Angela P.; Cozijnsen, Anton J.; Hane, James K.; Brunner, Patrick C.; McDonald, Bruce A.; Oliver, Richard P.; Howlett, Barbara J.

    2010-01-01

    Brassica napus (canola) cultivars and isolates of the blackleg fungus, Leptosphaeria maculans interact in a ‘gene for gene’ manner whereby plant resistance (R) genes are complementary to pathogen avirulence (Avr) genes. Avirulence genes encode proteins that belong to a class of pathogen molecules known as effectors, which includes small secreted proteins that play a role in disease. In Australia in 2003 canola cultivars with the Rlm1 resistance gene suffered a breakdown of disease resistance, resulting in severe yield losses. This was associated with a large increase in the frequency of virulence alleles of the complementary avirulence gene, AvrLm1, in fungal populations. Surprisingly, the frequency of virulence alleles of AvrLm6 (complementary to Rlm6) also increased dramatically, even though the cultivars did not contain Rlm6. In the L. maculans genome, AvrLm1 and AvrLm6 are linked along with five other genes in a region interspersed with transposable elements that have been degenerated by Repeat-Induced Point (RIP) mutations. Analyses of 295 Australian isolates showed deletions, RIP mutations and/or non-RIP derived amino acid substitutions in the predicted proteins encoded by these seven genes. The degree of RIP mutations within single copy sequences in this region was proportional to their proximity to the degenerated transposable elements. The RIP alleles were monophyletic and were present only in isolates collected after resistance conferred by Rlm1 broke down, whereas deletion alleles belonged to several polyphyletic lineages and were present before and after the resistance breakdown. Thus, genomic environment and exposure to resistance genes in B. napus has affected the evolution of these linked avirulence genes in L. maculans. PMID:21079787

  13. Occurrence, distribution, and potential affecting factors of organophosphate flame retardants in sewage sludge of wastewater treatment plants in Henan Province, Central China.

    PubMed

    Pang, Long; Yuan, Yiting; He, Han; Liang, Kang; Zhang, Hongzhong; Zhao, Jihong

    2016-06-01

    Organophosphate esters (OPEs) are widely used as flame retardants. In this study, the occurrence and distribution of six OPEs were investigated in sewage sludge from 24 wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) in 18 cities of Henan province, Central China. The results indicated that all target OPEs were detected in the sludge samples with the detection rate of 95.8%, except tris(dichloropropyl)phosphate (TDCP). The total concentration of the six OPEs ranged from 38.6 to 508 μg kg(-1). Tris(2-chloroethyl)phosphate (TCEP), tris(2-butoxyethyl)phosphate (TBEP), and tris(2-chloroiso-propyl)phosphate (TCPP) were found to be predominant, with concentrations ranging from 2.50 to 203, 1.60 to 383, and 6.70-161 μg kg(-1), respectively. The potential factors affecting OPE levels in sewage sludge, such as wastewater source, sludge characteristics, operational conditions, treatment techniques, and total organic carbon (TOC) of sludge in WWTPs were investigated. The results indicated that the total concentration of OPEs in sewage sludge has no significant relationship with the individual parameters (p > 0.05). However, significant correlations were found between triphenyl phosphate (TPhP) level and treatment capacity (R = 0.484, p < 0.05), processing volume (R = 0.495, p < 0.05), and serving population (R = 0.591, p < 0.05). Furthermore, the relationship between treatment techniques and the total concentration of OPEs in sewage sludge was also investigated in this study, and the results illustrated that the levels of OPEs in sludge were independent of the solid retention time (SRT). PMID:26974479

  14. Solar ultraviolet-B radiation affects seedling emergence, DNA integrity, plant morphology, growth rate, and attractiveness to herbivore insects in Datura ferox

    SciTech Connect

    Ballare, C.L.; Scopel, A.L.; Stapleton, A.E.

    1996-09-01

    To study functional relationships between the effects of solar ultraviolet-B radiation (UV0B) on different aspects of the physiology of a wild plant, we carried out exclusion experiments in the field with the summer annual Datura ferrox L. Solar UV-B incident over Buenos Aires reduced daytime seedling emergence, inhibited stem elongation and leaf expansion, and tended to reduce biomass accumulation during early growth. However, UV-B had no effect on calculated net assimilation rate. Using a monoclonal antibody specific to the cyclobutane-pyrimidine dimer (CPD), we found that plants receiving full sunlight had more CPDs per unit of DNA than plants shielded from solar UV-B, but the positive correlation between UV-B and CPD burden tended to level off at high (near solar) UV-B levels. At our field site, Datura plants were consumed by leaf beetles (Coleoptera), and the proportion of plants attacked by insects declined with the amount of UV-B received during growth. Field experiments showed that plant exposure to solar UV-B reduced the likelihood of leaf beetle attack by one-half. Our results highlight the complexities associated with scaling plant responses to solar UV-B, because they show: (a) a lack of correspondence between UV-B effects on net assimilation rate and whole-plant growth rate, (b) nonlinear UV-B dose-response curves, and (c) UV-B effects of plant attractiveness to natural herbivores. 56 refs., 7 figs.

  15. Solar Ultraviolet-B Radiation Affects Seedling Emergence, DNA Integrity, Plant Morphology, Growth Rate, and Attractiveness to Herbivore Insects in Datura ferox.

    PubMed Central

    Ballare, C. L.; Scopel, A. L.; Stapleton, A. E.; Yanovsky, M. J.

    1996-01-01

    To study functional relationships between the effects of solar ultraviolet-B radiation (UV-B) on different aspects of the physiology of a wild plant, we carried out exclusion experiments in the field with the summer annual Datura ferox L. Solar UV-B incident over Buenos Aires reduced daytime seedling emergence, inhibited stem elongation and leaf expansion, and tended to reduce biomass accumulation during early growth. However, UV-B had no effect on calculated net assimilation rate. Using a monoclonal antibody specific to the cyclobutane-pyrimidine dimer (CPD), we found that plants receiving full sunlight had more CPDs per unit of DNA than plants shielded from solar UV-B, but the positive correlation between UV-B and CPD burden tended to level off at high (near solar) UV-B levels. At our field site, Datura plants were consumed by leaf beetles (Coleoptera), and the proportion of plants attacked by insects declined with the amount of UV-B received during growth. Field experiments showed that plant exposure to solar UV-B reduced the likelihood of leaf beetle attack by one-half. Our results highlight the complexities associated with scaling plant responses to solar UV-B, because they show: (a) a lack of correspondence between UV-B effects on net assimilation rate and whole-plant growth rate, (b) nonlinear UV-B dose-response curves, and (c) UV-B effects of plant attractiveness to natural herbivores. PMID:12226382

  16. Elevated CO2-induced production of nitric oxide (NO) by NO synthase differentially affects nitrate reductase activity in Arabidopsis plants under different nitrate supplies.

    PubMed

    Du, Shaoting; Zhang, Ranran; Zhang, Peng; Liu, Huijun; Yan, Minggang; Chen, Ni; Xie, Huaqiang; Ke, Shouwei

    2016-02-01

    CO2 elevation often alters the plant's nitrate reductase (NR) activity, the first enzyme acting in the nitrate assimilation pathway. However, the mechanism underlying this process remains unknown. The association between elevated CO2-induced alterations of NR activity and nitric oxide (NO) was examined in Col-0 Arabidopsis fed with 0.2-10 mM nitrate, using NO donors, NO scavenger, and NO synthase (NOS) inhibitor. The noa1 mutant, in which most NOS activity was lost, and the NR activity-null mutant nia1 nia2 were also used to examine the above association. In response to CO2 elevation, NR activity increased in low-nitrate Col-0 plants but was inhibited in high-nitrate Col-0 plants. NO scavenger and NOS inhibitor could eliminate these two responses, whereas the application of NO donors mimicked these distinct responses in ambient CO2-grown Col-0 plants. Furthermore, in both low- and high-nitrate conditions, elevated CO2 increased NOS activity and NO levels in Col-0 and nia1 nia2 plants but had little effect on NO level and NR activity in noa1 plants. Considering all of these findings, this study concluded that, in response to CO2 elevation, either the NR activity induction in low-nitrate plants or the NR activity inhibition in high-nitrate plants is regulated by NOS-generated NO. PMID:26608644

  17. Intake of a Single Morning Dose of Standard and Novel Plant Sterol Preparations for 4 Weeks Does Not Dramatically Affect Plasma Lipid Concentrations in Humans

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Recommendations for decreasing the risk of developing cardiovascular disease include increasing the intake of plant sterols and fish oil. The cholesterol-lowering action of plant sterols, when provided in a fish-oil fatty acids vehicle, remains to be investigated in humans. A randomized, crossover-f...

  18. Relationship between Individual External Doses, Ambient Dose Rates and Individuals' Activity-Patterns in Affected Areas in Fukushima following the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant Accident.

    PubMed

    Naito, Wataru; Uesaka, Motoki; Yamada, Chie; Kurosawa, Tadahiro; Yasutaka, Tetsuo; Ishii, Hideki

    2016-01-01

    The accident at Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant on March 11, 2011, released radioactive material into the atmosphere and contaminated the land in Fukushima and several neighboring prefectures. Five years after the nuclear disaster, the radiation levels have greatly decreased due to physical decay, weathering, and decontamination operations in Fukushima. The populations of 12 communities were forced to evacuate after the accident; as of March 2016, the evacuation order has been lifted in only a limited area, and permanent habitation is still prohibited in most of the areas. In order for the government to lift the evacuation order and for individuals to return to their original residential areas, it is important to assess current and future realistic individual external doses. Here, we used personal dosimeters along with the Global Positioning System and Geographic Information System to understand realistic individual external doses and to relate individual external doses, ambient doses, and activity-patterns of individuals in the affected areas in Fukushima. The results showed that the additional individual external doses were well correlated to the additional ambient doses based on the airborne monitoring survey. The results of linear regression analysis suggested that the additional individual external doses were on average about one-fifth that of the additional ambient doses. The reduction factors, which are defined as the ratios of the additional individual external doses to the additional ambient doses, were calculated to be on average 0.14 and 0.32 for time spent at home and outdoors, respectively. Analysis of the contribution of various activity patterns to the total individual external dose demonstrated good agreement with the average fraction of time spent daily in each activity, but the contribution due to being outdoors varied widely. These results are a valuable contribution to understanding realistic individual external doses and the corresponding

  19. Relationship between Individual External Doses, Ambient Dose Rates and Individuals’ Activity-Patterns in Affected Areas in Fukushima following the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant Accident

    PubMed Central

    Kurosawa, Tadahiro; Yasutaka, Tetsuo; Ishii, Hideki

    2016-01-01

    The accident at Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant on March 11, 2011, released radioactive material into the atmosphere and contaminated the land in Fukushima and several neighboring prefectures. Five years after the nuclear disaster, the radiation levels have greatly decreased due to physical decay, weathering, and decontamination operations in Fukushima. The populations of 12 communities were forced to evacuate after the accident; as of March 2016, the evacuation order has been lifted in only a limited area, and permanent habitation is still prohibited in most of the areas. In order for the government to lift the evacuation order and for individuals to return to their original residential areas, it is important to assess current and future realistic individual external doses. Here, we used personal dosimeters along with the Global Positioning System and Geographic Information System to understand realistic individual external doses and to relate individual external doses, ambient doses, and activity-patterns of individuals in the affected areas in Fukushima. The results showed that the additional individual external doses were well correlated to the additional ambient doses based on the airborne monitoring survey. The results of linear regression analysis suggested that the additional individual external doses were on average about one-fifth that of the additional ambient doses. The reduction factors, which are defined as the ratios of the additional individual external doses to the additional ambient doses, were calculated to be on average 0.14 and 0.32 for time spent at home and outdoors, respectively. Analysis of the contribution of various activity patterns to the total individual external dose demonstrated good agreement with the average fraction of time spent daily in each activity, but the contribution due to being outdoors varied widely. These results are a valuable contribution to understanding realistic individual external doses and the corresponding

  20. Post Wildfire Changes in Plant Functioning and Vegetation Dynamics: Implications for Water Fluxes in Re-sprouting Forests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nolan, R. H.; Lane, P. N.; Mitchell, P. J.; Bradstock, R. A.

    2011-12-01

    Fire induced changes to the vegetation dynamics in temperate forests have been demonstrated to affect evapotranspiration (Et) rates through increases in plant size and density and stand-level transpiration and interception. In many cases these transient changes in forest structure result in substantial declines in stream flow for protracted periods after the disturbance. However to date research has focused on the wetter 'ash' forests of south-eastern Australia which solely regenerate via seedlings, it is unknown what changes in Et may occur in those forests which re-sprout post-fire. We hypothesize that Et fluxes track post-fire changes in sapwood area and leaf area index (L) in re-sprouting temperate forests, increasing as the forest regenerates. Following the 2009 Black Saturday wildfires in Victoria, we monitored Et rates for over a year in both damp and dry re-sprouting forest, incorporating a range of fire severity classes. Components of Et including overstorey transpiration, rainfall interception loss and forest floor Et were measured in conjunction with changes in L, sapwood area and leaf physiology. The monitoring period began one year post-fire with a typical hot, dry summer, at which stage Et rates in burnt forest were similar or less than those in unburnt forest. During the following summer, which was one of the wettest on record, Et increased across all monitoring plots but particularly so in the burnt forest where seedling regeneration resulted in an understorey L nearly twice that of unburnt forest. Forest floor Et was up to 46% higher in burnt forest, and rainfall interception values accounted for approximately 25% of rainfall compared to 15% in unburnt forest. The greatest increase in canopy transpiration rates over this period occurred in those trees subject to a low intensity fire where most of the canopy remained intact but there was also fire-triggered sprouting of new leaves along the trunk and main branches. In these trees rates of sapflow

  1. The potential of a salt-tolerant plant (Distichlis spicata cv. NyPa Forage) to treat effluent from inland saline aquaculture and provide livestock feed on salt-affected farmland.

    PubMed

    Lymbery, Alan J; Kay, Gavin D; Doupé, Robert G; Partridge, Gavin J; Norman, Hayley C

    2013-02-15

    Dryland salinity is a major problem affecting food production from agricultural land in Australia and throughout the world. Although there is much interest in using saline groundwater to grow marine fish on salt-affected farmland, the disposal of nutrient enriched, saline aquaculture effluent is a major environmental problem. We investigated the potential of the salt-tolerant NyPa Forage plant (Distichlis spicata L. Greene var. yensen-4a) to trap nutrients from saline aquaculture effluent and subsequently to provide a fodder crop for livestock. Sub-surface flow wetlands containing NyPa Forage were constructed and their efficacy in removing total nitrogen, ammonia, nitrite/nitrate, total phosphorus and orthophosphate was monitored under different levels of nutrients and salinity. The wetlands removed 60-90% of total nitrogen loads and at least 85% of ammonia, nitrite/nitrate, total phosphorus and orthophosphate loads, with greater efficiency at high nutrient and low salinity levels. The above-ground yield, sodium, crude protein (CP) and in vitro dry matter digestibility (DMD) of NyPa Forage plants were measured after fertilisation with different nutrient levels and cropping at different frequencies. Yield of plants increased with increased nutrient, while nutritive value was greater when nutrients were applied but did not differ among nutrient levels. Yield was not affected by cropping frequency, but nutritive value was greatest when plants were cropped at intervals of 21 or 42 days. At optimum nutrient addition and cropping levels, the plants had a mean CP content of 16.7% and an in vitro DMD of 67.6%, equivalent to an energy value of 9.5 MJ kg(-1). Assuming an equivalent fibre content and voluntary food intake as grass hay, and no accumulation of other toxic minerals, these nutritive values would be sufficient for maintenance or moderate liveweight gains in dry adult sheep or cattle. PMID:23333515

  2. Poinsettia plant exposure

    MedlinePlus

    Christmas flower poisoning; Lobster plant poisoning; Painted leaf poisoning ... Leaves, stem, sap of the poinsettia plant ... Poinsettia plant exposure can affect many parts of the body. EYES (IF DIRECT CONTACT OCCURS) Burning Redness STOMACH AND ...

  3. Potassium nutrition of ectomycorrhizal Pinus pinaster: overexpression of the Hebeloma cylindrosporum HcTrk1 transporter affects the translocation of both K(+) and phosphorus in the host plant.

    PubMed

    Garcia, Kevin; Delteil, Amandine; Conéjéro, Geneviève; Becquer, Adeline; Plassard, Claude; Sentenac, Hervé; Zimmermann, Sabine

    2014-02-01

    Mycorrhizal associations are known to improve the hydro-mineral nutrition of their host plants. However, the importance of mycorrhizal symbiosis for plant potassium nutrition has so far been poorly studied. We therefore investigated the impact of the ectomycorrhizal fungus Hebeloma cylindrosporum on the potassium nutrition of Pinus pinaster and examined the involvement of the fungal potassium transporter HcTrk1. HcTrk1 transcripts and proteins were localized in ectomycorrhizas using in situ hybridization and EGFP translational fusion constructs. Importantly, an overexpression strategy was performed on a H. cylindrosporum endogenous gene in order to dissect the role of this transporter. The potassium nutrition of mycorrhizal pine plants was significantly improved under potassium-limiting conditions. Fungal strains overexpressing HcTrk1 reduced the translocation of potassium and phosphorus from the roots to the shoots of inoculated plants in mycorrhizal experiments. Furthermore, expression of HcTrk1 and the phosphate transporter HcPT1.1 were reciprocally linked to the external inorganic phosphate and potassium availability. The development of these approaches provides a deeper insight into the role of ectomycorrhizal symbiosis on host plant K(+) nutrition and in particular, the K(+) transporter HcTrk1. The work augments our knowledge of the link between potassium and phosphorus nutrition via the mycorrhizal pathway. PMID:24279702

  4. Oxygen-18 Content of Atmospheric Oxygen Does Not Affect the Oxygen Isotope Relationship between Environmental Water and Cellulose in a Submerged Aquatic Plant, Egeria densa Planch 1

    PubMed Central

    Cooper, Lee W.; DeNiro, Michael J.

    1989-01-01

    We determined that the oxygen isotopic composition of cellulose synthesized by a submerged plant, Egeria densa Planch., is related to the isotopic composition of environmental water by a linear function, δ18O cellulose = 0.48 δ18O water + 24.1%‰. The observation of a slope of less than 1 indicates that a portion of cellulose oxygen is derived from an isotopically constant source other than water. We tested whether this source might be molecular oxygen by growing plants in the presence of high concentrations of 18O in the form of O2 bubbled into the bottom of an aquarium. Cellulose synthesized during this experiment did not have significantly different oxygen isotope ratios than that synthesized by control plants exposed to O2 of normal 18O abundance. We propose that oxygen in organic matter recycled from senescent portions of the plant is incorporated into cellulose. Our findings indicate that paleoclimatic models linking the oxygen isotope composition of environmental water to cellulose from fossil plants will have to be modified to account for contributions of oxygen from this or other sources besides water. PMID:16667066

  5. Flavohaemoglobin HmpX from Erwinia chrysanthemi confers nitrosative stress tolerance and affects the plant hypersensitive reaction by intercepting nitric oxide produced by the host.

    PubMed

    Boccara, Martine; Mills, Catherine E; Zeier, Jürgen; Anzi, Chiara; Lamb, Chris; Poole, Robert K; Delledonne, Massimo

    2005-07-01

    Host cells respond to infection by generating nitric oxide (NO) as a cytotoxic weapon to facilitate killing of invading microbes. Bacterial flavohaemoglobins are well-known scavengers of NO and play a crucial role in protecting animal pathogens from nitrosative stress during infection. Erwinia chrysanthemi, which causes macerating diseases in a wide variety of plants, possesses a flavohaemoglobin (HmpX) whose function in plant pathogens has remained unclear. Here we show that HmpX consumes NO and prevents inhibition by NO of cell respiration, indicating a role in protection from nitrosative stress. Furthermore, infection of Saintpaulia ionantha plants with an HmpX-deficient mutant of E. chrysanthemi revealed that the lack of NO scavenging activity causes the accumulation of unusually high levels of NO in host tissue and triggers hypersensitive cell death. Introduction of the wild-type hmpX gene in an incompatible strain of Pseudomonas syringae had a dramatic effect on the hypersensitive cell death in soya bean cell suspensions, and markedly reduced the development of macroscopic symptoms in Arabidopsis thaliana plants. These observations indicate that HmpX not only protects against nitrosative stress but also attenuates host hypersensitive reaction during infection by intercepting NO produced by the plant for the execution of the hypersensitive cell death programme. PMID:15998309

  6. Heavy Metal Concentrations in Soils and Factors Affecting Metal Uptake by Plants in the Vicinity of a Korean Cu-W Mine

    PubMed Central

    Jung, Myung Chae

    2008-01-01

    Heavy metal concentrations were measured in soils and plants in and around a copper-tungsten mine in southeast Korea to investigate the influence of past base metal mining on the surface environment. The results of chemical analysis indicate that the heavy metals in soils decreased with distance from the source, controlled mainly by water movement and topography. The metal concentrations measured in plant species generally decreased in the order; spring onions > soybean leaves > perilla leaves ≈ red pepper > corn grains ≈ jujube grains, although this pattern varied moderately between different elements. The results agree with other reports that metal concentrations in leaves are usually much higher than those in grain. Factors influencing the bioavailability of metals and their occurrences in crops were found as soil pH, cation exchange capacity, organic matter content, soil texture, and interaction among the target elements. It is concluded that total metal concentrations in soils are the main controls on their contents in plants. Soil pH was also an important factor. A stepwise linear multiple regression analysis was also conducted to identify the dominant factors influencing metal uptake by plants. Metal concentrations in plants were also estimated by computer-aided statistical methods.

  7. Oxygen Sensing via the Ethylene Response Transcription Factor RAP2.12 Affects Plant Metabolism and Performance under Both Normoxia and Hypoxia.

    PubMed

    Paul, Melanie Verena; Iyer, Srignanakshi; Amerhauser, Carmen; Lehmann, Martin; van Dongen, Joost T; Geigenberger, Peter

    2016-09-01

    Subgroup-VII-ethylene-response-factor (ERF-VII) transcription factors are involved in the regulation of hypoxic gene expression and regulated by proteasome-mediated proteolysis via the oxygen-dependent branch of the N-end-rule pathway. While research into ERF-VII mainly focused on their role to regulate anoxic gene expression, little is known on the impact of this oxygen-sensing system in regulating plant metabolism and growth. By comparing Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) plants overexpressing N-end-rule-sensitive and insensitive forms of the ERF-VII-factor RAP2.12, we provide evidence that oxygen-dependent RAP2.12 stability regulates central metabolic processes to sustain growth, development, and anoxic resistance of plants. (1) Under normoxia, overexpression of N-end-rule-insensitive Δ13RAP2.12 led to increased activities of fermentative enzymes and increased accumulation of fermentation products, which were accompanied by decreased adenylate energy states and starch levels, and impaired plant growth and development, indicating a role of oxygen-regulated RAP2.12 degradation to prevent aerobic fermentation. (2) In Δ13RAP2.12-overexpressing plants, decreased carbohydrate reserves also led to a decrease in anoxic resistance, which was prevented by external Suc supply. (3) Overexpression of Δ13RAP2.12 led to decreased respiration rates, changes in the levels of tricarboxylic acid cycle intermediates, and accumulation of a large number of amino acids, including Ala and γ-amino butyric acid, indicating a role of oxygen-regulated RAP2.12 abundance in controlling the flux-modus of the tricarboxylic acid cycle. (4) The increase in amino acids was accompanied by increased levels of immune-regulatory metabolites. These results show that oxygen-sensing, mediating RAP2.12 degradation is indispensable to optimize metabolic performance, plant growth, and development under both normoxic and hypoxic conditions. PMID:27372243

  8. THE ADDITION OF MILK OR YOGURT TO A PLANT-BASED DIET INCREASES ZINC BIOAVAILABILITY BUT DOES NOT AFFECT IRON BIOAVAILABILITY IN WOMEN

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The addition of milk and milk-based products to the diets of individuals subsisting on plant-based diets was reported to have positive effects on nutritional status and functional outcomes such as growth, morbidity, and cognition. We examined the effect of the addition of milk or yogurt on the bioav...

  9. Critical rearing parameters of Tetrastichus planipennisi (Hymenoptera: Eulophidae) as affected by host-plant substrate and host-parasitoid group structure

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Laboratory studies were conducted to evaluate the potential impact of host-plant substrate types, host-parasitoid group size and host to parasitoid ratios on select fitness parameters of the larval parasitoid Tetrastichus planipennisi Yang, newly introduced for biological control of the invasive eme...

  10. Pepper plants growth, yield, photosynthetic pigments, and total phenols as affected by foliar application of potassium under different salinity irrigation water

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Irrigation with high salinity water influences plant growth, production of photosynthetic pigments and total phenols, leading to reduction in crop yield and quality. Foliar application of macro- and/or micro-nutrients can, to some extent, mitigate negative effects of high salinity irrigation water o...

  11. Constitutively overexpressing a tomato fructokinase gene (lefrk1) in cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L. cv. coker 312) positively affects plant vegetative growth, boll number and seed cotton yield.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Increasing fructokinase (FRK) activity in cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.) plants may reduce fructose inhibition of sucrose synthase (Sus) and lead to improved fibre yield and quality. Cotton was transformed with a tomato (Solanum lycopersicum L.) fructokinase gene (LeFRK1) under the control of the C...

  12. Knocking Out ACR2 Does Not Affect Arsenic Redox Status in Arabidopsis thaliana: Implications for As Detoxification and Accumulation in Plants

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Wenju; Schat, Henk; Bliek, Mathijs; Chen, Yi; McGrath, Steve P.; George, Graham; Salt, David E.; Zhao, Fang-Jie

    2012-01-01

    Many plant species are able to reduce arsenate to arsenite efficiently, which is an important step allowing detoxification of As through either efflux of arsenite or complexation with thiol compounds. It has been suggested that this reduction is catalyzed by ACR2, a plant homologue of the yeast arsenate reductase ScACR2. Silencing of AtACR2 was reported to result in As hyperaccumulation in the shoots of Arabidopsis thaliana. However, no information of the in vivo As speciation has been reported. Here, we investigated the effect of AtACR2 knockout or overexpression on As speciation, arsenite efflux from roots and As accumulation in shoots. T-DNA insertion lines, overexpression lines and wild-type (WT) plants were exposed to different concentrations of arsenate for different periods, and As speciation in plants and arsenite efflux were determined using HPLC-ICP-MS. There were no significant differences in As speciation between different lines, with arsenite accounting for >90% of the total extractable As in both roots and shoots. Arsenite efflux to the external medium represented on average 77% of the arsenate taken up during 6 h exposure, but there were no significant differences between WT and mutants or overexpression lines. Accumulation of As in the shoots was also unaffected by AtACR2 knockout or overexpression. Additionally, after exposure to arsenate, the yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae) strain with ScACR2 deleted showed similar As speciation as the WT with arsenite-thiol complexes being the predominant species. Our results suggest the existence of multiple pathways of arsenate reduction in plants and yeast. PMID:22879969

  13. [Effectiveness of symbiotic n2-fixation in leguminous plants, as affected by inoculation with rhizobia, by substrate, n-fertilizing, and 14c-sucrose application (author's transl)].

    PubMed

    Merbach, W; Schilling, G

    1980-01-01

    Cultivation experiments (Mitscherlich-vessels, quartz sand, 15N-labelled soil, 15N-fertilizer) showed, that various strains of Rhizobium lupini (white and yellow lupines) and of Rhizobium leguminosarum (field beans and peas) induced a different N2-fixation of the inoculated plants, the most effective Rhizobium strains being 367a, Cz, T3, 271 (Rh. lupini), and Azotogen (Rh, leguminosarum). Yellow lupines and field bean plants were supplied with N2 from the air considerably better than white lupines and peas after inoculation with the most effective Rhizobium strains. Application of mineral N to the white lupines and peas not only substituted the inhibited N2-fixation, but increased N amounts in the plants. White lupines fixed more N2 under soil conditions than in quartz sand. An experiment with steam-sterilized and 15-labelled soil as a comparative substrate showed, that this finding was mainly caused by an additional Rhizobium infection from the soil. Contrary to field beans and yellow lupines which fix N2 up to ripeness, white lupines and peas finished N2-fixation in the time of flowering. Mineral-N applied at that time was an additional source of N for last-named plants and they utilized it for production of higher protein yields. Continual spraying of white lupine plants with 14C-labelled sucrose solution after the time of flowering caused continuance of N2-fixation up to the stage of ripeness. It is assumed that the cause of this effect was the competition of growing seeds and nodules for the photosynthates. The supply of nodules was inadequate without external sucrose application. Mineral N inhibited the sucrose-induced N2-fixation of white lupine nodules and their consumption of photosynthates. Consequently, the applied 14C was transported into seeds to a larger extent. The investigations allow the following conclusion: Effective N2-fixation requires nodules being a powerful sink for assimilates on the basis of a highly efficient photosynthetic system of the

  14. The N-glycan on Asn54 affects the atypical N-glycan composition of plant-produced interleukin-22, but does not influence its activity.

    PubMed

    Wilbers, Ruud H P; Westerhof, Lotte B; Reuter, Lauri J; Castilho, Alexandra; van Raaij, Debbie R; Nguyen, Dieu-Linh; Lozano-Torres, Jose L; Smant, Geert; Hokke, Cornelis H; Bakker, Jaap; Schots, Arjen

    2016-02-01

    Human interleukin-22 (IL-22) is a member of the IL-10 cytokine family that has recently been shown to have major therapeutic potential. IL-22 is an unusual cytokine as it does not act directly on immune cells. Instead, IL-22 controls the differentiation, proliferation and antimicrobial protein expression of epithelial cells, thereby maintaining epithelial barrier function. In this study, we transiently expressed human IL-22 in Nicotiana benthamiana plants and investigated the role of N-glycosylation on protein folding and biological activity. Expression levels of IL-22 were up to 5.4 μg/mg TSP, and N-glycan analysis revealed the presence of the atypical Lewis A structure. Surprisingly, upon engineering of human-like N-glycans on IL-22 by co-expressing mouse FUT8 in ΔXT/FT plants a strong reduction in Lewis A was observed. Also, core α1,6-fucoylation did not improve the biological activity of IL-22. The combination of site-directed mutagenesis of Asn54 and in vivo deglycosylation with PNGase F also revealed that N-glycosylation at this position is not required for proper protein folding. However, we do show that the presence of a N-glycan on Asn54 contributes to the atypical N-glycan composition of plant-produced IL-22 and influences the N-glycan composition of N-glycans on other positions. Altogether, our data demonstrate that plants offer an excellent tool to investigate the role of N-glycosylation on folding and activity of recombinant glycoproteins, such as IL-22. PMID:26059044

  15. Metal uptake of tomato and alfalfa plants as affected by water source, salinity, and Cd and Zn levels under greenhouse conditions.

    PubMed

    Gharaibeh, Mamoun A; Marschner, Bernd; Heinze, Stefanie

    2015-12-01

    Irrigation with wastewater is a promising option to improve crop yields and to reduce pressure on freshwater sources. However, heavy metal concentrations in wastewater may cause health concerns. A greenhouse pot experiment was conducted in order to determine cadmium (Cd) and zinc (Zn) concentrations in sandy soil and plant tissues of tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum L.) and alfalfa (Medicago sativa L.). A 2 × 2 × 4 × 2 factorial treatment arrangement was utilized. Two water sources, fresh (FW) or treated wastewater (TWW), at two salinity levels (1 and 3 dS m(-1)) containing different levels of Cd and Zn were used. Samples were collected after a 90-day growth period. It was observed that the growth of both plants was depressed at the highest metal level (L3). Metal accumulation in plant parts increased with the increase of metal concentration and salinity in irrigation water. At low salinity, water source was the main factor which controlled metal accumulation, whereas, at high salinity, chloride appeared to be the principal factor controlling metal uptake regardless of water source. Metal translocation from roots to shoots increased in TWW-irrigated plants, even in the controls. Tomatoes accumulated Cd up to and above critical levels safe for human consumption, even though Cd concentration in irrigation water did not exceed the current recommended values. Therefore, food production in sandy soils may well pose a health hazard when irrigated with TWW containing heavy metals. Complexation with dissolved organic compounds (DOC) in TWW may be to be the principal factor responsible for increased metal uptake and transfer at low salinity, thereby increasing the risk of heavy metal contamination of food and forage crops. PMID:26206131

  16. The Bacterial and Fungal Diversity of an Aged PAH- and Heavy Metal-Contaminated Soil is Affected by Plant Cover and Edaphic Parameters.

    PubMed

    Bourceret, Amélia; Cébron, Aurélie; Tisserant, Emilie; Poupin, Pascal; Bauda, Pascale; Beguiristain, Thierry; Leyval, Corinne

    2016-04-01

    Industrial wasteland soils with aged PAH and heavy metal contaminations are environments where pollutant toxicity has been maintained for decades. Although the communities may be well adapted to the presence of stressors, knowledge about microbial diversity in such soils is scarce. Soil microbial community dynamics can be driven by the presence of plants, but the impact of plant development on selection or diversification of microorganisms in these soils has not been established yet. To test these hypotheses, aged-contaminated soil samples from a field trial were collected. Plots planted with alfalfa were compared to bare soil plots, and bacterial and fungal diversity and abundance were assessed after 2 and 6 years. Using pyrosequencing of 16S rRNA gene and ITS amplicons, we showed that the bacterial community was dominated by Proteobacteria, Actinobacteria, and Bacteroidetes and was characterized by low Acidobacteria abundance, while the fungal community was mainly represented by members of the Ascomycota. The short-term toxic impact of pollutants usually reduces the microbial diversity, yet in our samples bacterial and fungal species richness and diversity was high suggesting that the community structure and diversity adapted to the contaminated soil over decades. The presence of plants induced higher bacterial and fungal diversity than in bare soil. It also increased the relative abundance of bacterial members of the Actinomycetales, Rhizobiales, and Xanthomonadales orders and of most fungal orders. Multivariate analysis showed correlations between microbial community structure and heavy metal and PAH concentrations over time, but also with edaphic parameters (C/N, pH, phosphorus, and nitrogen concentrations). PMID:26440298

  17. A Missense Mutation in the Zinc Finger Domain of OsCESA7 Deleteriously Affects Cellulose Biosynthesis and Plant Growth in Rice

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Daofeng; Qin, Yanling; Fang, Jingjing; Yuan, Shoujiang; Peng, Lixiang; Zhao, Jinfeng; Li, Xueyong

    2016-01-01

    Rice is a model plant species for the study of cellulose biosynthesis. We isolated a mutant, S1-24, from ethyl methanesulfonate (EMS)-treated plants of the japonica rice cultivar, Nipponbare. The mutant exhibited brittle culms and other pleiotropic phenotypes such as dwarfism and partial sterility. The brittle culms resulted from reduced mechanical strength due to a defect in thickening of the sclerenchyma cell wall and reduced cellulose content in the culms of the S1-24 mutant. Map-based gene cloning and a complementation assay showed that phenotypes of the S1-24 mutant were caused by a recessive point mutation in the OsCESA7 gene, which encodes cellulose synthase A subunit 7. The missense mutation changed the highly conserved C40 to Y in the zinc finger domain. The OsCESA7 gene is expressed predominantly in the culm at the mature stage, particularly in mechanical tissues such as vascular bundles and sclerenchyma cells, consistent with the brittle phenotype in the culm. These results indicate that OsCESA7 plays an important role in cellulose biosynthesis and plant growth. PMID:27092937

  18. Protein phosphatase 2A regulatory subunits affecting plant innate immunity, energy metabolism, and flowering time – joint functions among B'η subfamily members

    PubMed Central

    Kataya, Amr RA; Heidari, Behzad; Lillo, Cathrine

    2015-01-01

    Protein phosphatase 2A (PP2A) is a heterotrimeric complex comprising a catalytic, scaffolding, and regulatory subunit. The regulatory subunits are essential for substrate specificity and localization of the complex and are classified into B/B55, B', and B” non-related families in higher plants. In Arabidopsis thaliana, the close paralogs B'η, B'θ, B'γ, and B'ζ were further classified into a subfamily of B' called B'η. Here we present results that consolidate the evidence for a role of the B'η subfamily in regulation of innate immunity, energy metabolism and flowering time. Proliferation of the virulent Pseudomonas syringae in B'θ knockout mutant decreased in comparison with wild type plants. Additionally, B'θ knockout plants were delayed in flowering, and this phenotype was supported by high expression of FLC (FLOWERING LOCUS C). B'ζ knockout seedlings showed growth retardation on sucrose-free medium, indicating a role for B'ζ in energy metabolism. This work provides insight into functions of the B'η subfamily members, highlighting their regulation of shared physiological traits while localizing to distinct cellular compartments. PMID:26039486

  19. A 3-Year Study Reveals That Plant Growth Stage, Season and Field Site Affect Soil Fungal Communities while Cultivar and GM-Trait Have Minor Effects

    PubMed Central

    Hannula, Silja Emilia; de Boer, Wietse; van Veen, Johannes

    2012-01-01

    In this three year field study the impact of different potato (Solanum tuberosum L.) cultivars including a genetically modified (GM) amylopectin-accumulating potato line on rhizosphere fungal communities are investigated using molecular microbiological methods. The effects of growth stage of a plant, soil type and year on the rhizosphere fungi were included in this study. To compare the effects, one GM cultivar, the parental isoline, and four non-related cultivars were planted in the fields and analysed using T-RFLP on the basis of fungal phylum specific primers combined with multivariate statistical methods. Additionally, fungal biomass and some extracellular fungal enzymes (laccases, Mn-peroxidases and cellulases) were quantified in order to gain insight into the function of the fungal communities. Plant growth stage and year (and agricultural management) had the strongest effect on both diversity and function of the fungal communities while the GM-trait studied was the least explanatory factor. The impact of cultivar and soil type was intermediate. Occasional differences between cultivars, the amylopectin-accumulating potato line, and its parental variety were detected, but these differences were mostly transient in nature and detected either only in one soil, one growth stage or one year. PMID:22529898

  20. Fenton process-affected transformation of roxarsone in paddy rice soils: Effects on plant growth and arsenic accumulation in rice grain.

    PubMed

    Qin, Junhao; Li, Huashou; Lin, Chuxia

    2016-08-01

    Batch and greenhouse experiments were conducted to examine the effects of Fenton process on transformation of roxarsone in soils and its resulting impacts on the growth of and As uptake by a rice plant cultivar. The results show that addition of Fenton reagent markedly accelerated the degradation of roxarsone and produced arsenite, which was otherwise absent in the soil without added Fenton reagent. Methylation of arsenate was also enhanced by Fenton process in the earlier part of the experiment due to abundant supply of arsenate from Roxarsone degradation. Overall, addition of Fenton reagent resulted in the predominant presence of arsenate in the soils. Fenton process significantly improved the growth of rice in the maturity stage of the first crop, The concentration of methylated As species in the rice plant tissues among the different growth stages was highly variable. Addition of Fenton reagent into the soils led to reduced uptake of soil-borne As by the rice plants and this had a significant effect on reducing the accumulation of As in rice grains. The findings have implications for understanding As biogeochemistry in paddy rice field receiving rainwater-borne H2O2 and for development of mitigation strategies to reduce accumulation of As in rice grains. PMID:27060198

  1. A Missense Mutation in the Zinc Finger Domain of OsCESA7 Deleteriously Affects Cellulose Biosynthesis and Plant Growth in Rice.

    PubMed

    Wang, Daofeng; Qin, Yanling; Fang, Jingjing; Yuan, Shoujiang; Peng, Lixiang; Zhao, Jinfeng; Li, Xueyong

    2016-01-01

    Rice is a model plant species for the study of cellulose biosynthesis. We isolated a mutant, S1-24, from ethyl methanesulfonate (EMS)-treated plants of the japonica rice cultivar, Nipponbare. The mutant exhibited brittle culms and other pleiotropic phenotypes such as dwarfism and partial sterility. The brittle culms resulted from reduced mechanical strength due to a defect in thickening of the sclerenchyma cell wall and reduced cellulose content in the culms of the S1-24 mutant. Map-based gene cloning and a complementation assay showed that phenotypes of the S1-24 mutant were caused by a recessive point mutation in the OsCESA7 gene, which encodes cellulose synthase A subunit 7. The missense mutation changed the highly conserved C40 to Y in the zinc finger domain. The OsCESA7 gene is expressed predominantly in the culm at the mature stage, particularly in mechanical tissues such as vascular bundles and sclerenchyma cells, consistent with the brittle phenotype in the culm. These results indicate that OsCESA7 plays an important role in cellulose biosynthesis and plant growth. PMID:27092937

  2. Animal v. plant-based bait: does the bait type affect census of fish assemblages and trophic groups by baited remote underwater video (BRUV) systems?

    PubMed

    Ghazilou, A; Shokri, M R; Gladstone, W

    2016-05-01

    Coral reef fish communities were sampled at the Nayband Marine Park, Iran, using baited remote underwater video stations (BRUVSs) which incorporated animal (i.e. frigate tuna Auxis thazard and beef liver), or plant-based baits (i.e. raw dough and raw dough-turmeric powder mix). The A. thazard was found to record significantly (P < 0·05) higher species richness and number of carnivorous fishes than plant-based baits, while abundance of herbivores was maximum in raw dough-turmeric powder mix trials. There was also a significant difference in trophic composition of fish assemblages surveyed by animal- and plant-based baits which seemed to be due to variations in attraction patterns of carnivores and herbivores occurring at the earlier phases of each BRUV deployments. Meanwhile, the assemblage structure was comparable among fish assemblages sampled by different bait treatments, indicating that species-level responses to each bait type may be more complicated. In essence, the efficiency of mixed baits should also be examined in future studies. PMID:27170108

  3. Carbon Nanotubes Filled with Different Ferromagnetic Alloys Affect the Growth and Development of Rice Seedlings by Changing the C:N Ratio and Plant Hormones Concentrations

    PubMed Central

    Lv, Ruitao; Ma, Chuanxin; Zhang, Zetian; Rui, Yukui; Liu, Liming; Cao, Weidong; Xing, Baoshan

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate the phytotoxicity of thin-walled carbon nanotubes (CNTs) to rice (Oryza sativa L.) seedlings. Three different CNTs, including hollow multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs), Fe-filled carbon nanotubes (Fe-CNTs), and Fe-Co-filled carbon nanotubes (FeCo-CNTs), were evaluated. The CNTs significantly inhibited rice growth by decreasing the concentrations of endogenous plant hormones. The carbon to nitrogen ratio (C:N ratio) significantly increased in rice roots after treatments with CNTs, and all three types of CNTs had the same effects on the C:N ratio. Interestingly, the increase in the C:N ratio in roots was largely because of decreased N content, indicating that the CNTs significantly decreased N assimilation. Analyses of the Fe and Co contents in plant tissues, transmission electron microscope (TEM) observations and energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDS) analysis proved that the CNTs could penetrate the cell wall and the cell membrane, and then enter the root cells. According to the author's knowledge, this is the first time to study the relationship between carbon nanotubes and carbon nitrogen ratio and plant hormones. PMID:27284692

  4. Species-Specific Effects of Woody Litter on Seedling Emergence and Growth of Herbaceous Plants

    PubMed Central

    Koorem, Kadri; Price, Jodi N.; Moora, Mari

    2011-01-01

    The effect of litter on seedling establishment can influence species richness in plant communities. The effect of litter depends on amount, and also on litter type, but relatively little is known about the species-specific effects of litter. We conducted a factorial greenhouse experiment to examine the effect of litter type, using two woody species that commonly co-occur in boreonemoral forest—evergreen spruce (Picea abies), deciduous hazel (Corylus avellana), and a mixture of the two species—and litter amount—shallow (4 mm), deep (12 mm) and leachate—on seedling emergence and biomass of three understorey species. The effect of litter amount on seedling emergence was highly dependent on litter type; while spruce needle litter had a significant negative effect that increased with depth, seedling emergence in the presence of hazel broadleaf litter did not differ from control pots containing no litter. Mixed litter of both species also had a negative effect on seedling emergence that was intermediate compared to the single-species treatments. Spruce litter had a marginally positive (shallow) or neutral effect (deep) on seedling biomass, while hazel and mixed litter treatments had significant positive effects on biomass that increased with depth. We found non-additive effects of litter mixtures on seedling biomass indicating that high quality hazel litter can reduce the negative effects of spruce. Hazel litter does not inhibit seedling emergence; it increases seedling growth, and creates better conditions for seedling growth in mixtures by reducing the suppressive effect of spruce litter, having a positive effect on understorey species richness. PMID:22028890

  5. The bacterial lipopeptide iturins induce Verticillium dahliae cell death by affecting fungal signalling pathways and mediate plant defence responses involved in pathogen-associated molecular pattern-triggered immunity.

    PubMed

    Han, Qin; Wu, Fengli; Wang, Xiaonan; Qi, Hong; Shi, Liang; Ren, Ang; Liu, Qinghai; Zhao, Mingwen; Tang, Canming

    2015-04-01

    Verticillium wilt in cotton caused by Verticillium dahliae is one of the most serious plant diseases worldwide. Because no known fungicides or cotton cultivars provide sufficient protection against this pathogen, V. dahliae causes major crop yield losses. Here, an isolated cotton endophytic bacterium, designated Bacillus amyloliquefaciens 41B-1, exhibited greater than 50% biocontrol efficacy against V. dahliae in cotton plants under greenhouse conditions. Through high-performance liquid chromatography and mass analysis of the filtrate, we found that the antifungal compounds present in the strain 41B-1 culture filtrate were a series of isoforms of iturins. The purified iturins suppressed V. dahliae microsclerotial germination in the absence or presence of cotton. Treatment with the iturins induced reactive oxygen species bursts, Hog1 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) activation and defects in cell wall integrity. The oxidative stress response and high-osmolarity glycerol pathway contribute to iturins resistance in V. dahliae. In contrast, the Slt2 MAPK pathway may be involved in iturins sensitivity in this fungus. In addition to antagonism, iturins could induce plant defence responses as activators and mediate pathogen-associated molecular pattern-triggered immunity. These findings suggest that iturins may affect fungal signalling pathways and mediate plant defence responses against V. dahliae. PMID:24934960

  6. Tree species richness affecting fine root biomass in European forests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Finér, Leena; Domisch, Timo; Vesterdal, Lars; Dawud, Seid M.; Raulund-Rasmussen, Karsten

    2016-04-01

    Fine roots are an important factor in the forest carbon cycle, contributing significantly to below-ground biomass and soil carbon storage. Therefore it is essential to understand the role of the forest structure, indicated by tree species diversity in controlling below-ground biomass and managing the carbon pools of forest soils. We studied how tree species richness would affect fine root biomass and its distribution in the soil profile and biomass above- and below-ground allocation patterns of different tree species. Our main hypothesis was that increasing tree species richness would lead to below-ground niche differentiation and more efficient soil exploitation by the roots, resulting in a higher fine root biomass in the soil. We sampled fine roots of trees and understorey vegetation in six European forest types in Finland, Poland, Germany, Romania, Italy and Spain, representing boreal, temperate and Mediterranean forests, established within the FunDivEUROPE project for studying the effects of tree species diversity on forest functioning. After determining fine root biomasses, we identified the percentages of different tree species in the fine root samples using the near infrared reflectance spectroscopy (NIRS) method. Opposite to our hypothesis we did not find any general positive relationship between tree species richness and fine root biomass. A weak positive response found in Italy and Spain seemed to be related to dry environmental conditions during Mediterranean summers. At the Polish site where we could sample deeper soil layers (down to 40 cm), we found more tree fine roots in the deeper layers under species-rich forests, as compared to the monocultures, indicating the ability of trees to explore more resources and to increase soil carbon stocks. Tree species richness did not affect biomass allocation patterns between above- and below-ground parts of the trees.

  7. Constitutive expression of pathogen-inducible OsWRKY31 enhances disease resistance and affects root growth and auxin response in transgenic rice plants.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Juan; Peng, Youliang; Guo, Zejian

    2008-04-01

    WRKY transcription factors have many regulatory roles in response to biotic and abiotic stresses. In this study, we isolated a rice WRKY gene (OsWRKY31) that is induced by the rice blast fungus Magnaporthe grisea and auxin. This gene encodes a polypeptide of 211 amino-acid residues and belongs to a subgroup of the rice WRKY gene family that probably originated after the divergence of monocot and dicot plants. OsWRKY31 was found to be localized to the nucleus of onion epidermis cells to transiently express OsWRKY31-eGFP fusion protein. Analysis of OsWRKY31 and its mutants fused with a Gal4 DNA-binding domain indicated that OsWRKY31 has transactivation activity in yeast. Overexpression of the OsWRKY31 gene was found to enhance resistance against infection with M. grisea, and the transgenic lines exhibited reduced lateral root formation and elongation compared with wild-type and RNAi plants. The lines with overexpression showed constitutive expression of many defense-related genes, such as PBZ1 and OsSci2, as well as early auxin-response genes, such as OsIAA4 and OsCrl1 genes. Furthermore, the plants with overexpression were less sensitive to exogenously supplied IBA, NAA and 2,4-D at high concentrations, suggesting that overexpression of the OsWRKY31 gene might alter the auxin response or transport. These results also suggest that OsWRKY31 might be a common component in the signal transduction pathways of the auxin response and the defense response in rice. PMID:18071364

  8. A 2-Year Field Study Shows Little Evidence That the Long-Term Planting of Transgenic Insect-Resistant Cotton Affects the Community Structure of Soil Nematodes

    PubMed Central

    Li, Xiaogang; Liu, Biao

    2013-01-01

    Transgenic insect-resistant cotton has been released into the environment for more than a decade in China to effectively control the cotton bollworm (Helicoverpa armigera) and other Lepidoptera. Because of concerns about undesirable ecological side-effects of transgenic crops, it is important to monitor the potential environmental impact of transgenic insect-resistant cotton after commercial release. Our 2-year study included 1 cotton field where non-transgenic cotton had been planted continuously and 2 other cotton fields where transgenic insect-resistant cotton had been planted for different lengths of time since 1997 and since 2002. In 2 consecutive years (2009 and 2010), we took soil samples from 3 cotton fields at 4 different growth stages (seedling, budding, boll-forming and boll-opening stages), collected soil nematodes from soil with the sugar flotation and centrifugation method and identified the soil nematodes to the genus level. The generic composition, individual densities and diversity indices of the soil nematodes did not differ significantly between the 2 transgenic cotton fields and the non-transgenic cotton field, but significant seasonal variation was found in the individual densities of the principal trophic groups and in the diversity indices of the nematodes in all 3 cotton fields. The study used a comparative perspective to monitor the impact of transgenic insect-resistant cotton grown in typical ‘real world’ conditions. The results of the study suggested that more than 10 years of cultivation of transgenic insect-resistant cotton had no significant effects–adverse or otherwise–on soil nematodes. This study provides a theoretical basis for ongoing environmental impact monitoring of transgenic plants. PMID:23613899

  9. [Certain Blood Values of the Siberian Roach Rutilus rutilus in Affected Area of Warm Water from Gusinoozerskaya State District Power Plant (Eastern Siberia)].

    PubMed

    Mazur, O E

    2015-01-01

    The erythron parameters of Siberian roach inhabiting Gusinoe Lake were determined for the first time in an area of warm water discharged from the Gusinoozerskaya State District Power Plant (SDPP) (Eastern Siberia). It was noted that the defects of erythropoiesis identified (degenerative changes in the cytoskeleton, cytoplasm structure, and erythrocytes nuclei and a tendency to the development of hypochromic anemia) were obviously due to the combined impact of chemical and heat pollution of the water area of Gusinoe Lake by water discharged from the SDPP. PMID:26852487

  10. Circadian Stress Regimes Affect the Circadian Clock and Cause Jasmonic Acid-Dependent Cell Death in Cytokinin-Deficient Arabidopsis Plants.

    PubMed

    Nitschke, Silvia; Cortleven, Anne; Iven, Tim; Feussner, Ivo; Havaux, Michel; Riefler, Michael; Schmülling, Thomas

    2016-07-01

    The circadian clock helps plants measure daylength and adapt to changes in the day-night rhythm. We found that changes in the light-dark regime triggered stress responses, eventually leading to cell death, in leaves of Arabidopsis thaliana plants with reduced cytokinin levels or defective cytokinin signaling. Prolonged light treatment followed by a dark period induced stress and cell death marker genes while reducing photosynthetic efficiency. This response, called circadian stress, is also characterized by altered expression of clock and clock output genes. In particular, this treatment strongly reduced the expression of CIRCADIAN CLOCK ASSOCIATED1 (CCA1) and LATE ELONGATED HYPOCOTYL (LHY). Intriguingly, similar changes in gene expression and cell death were observed in clock mutants lacking proper CCA1 and LHY function. Circadian stress caused strong changes in reactive oxygen species- and jasmonic acid (JA)-related gene expression. The activation of the JA pathway, involving the accumulation of JA metabolites, was crucial for the induction of cell death, since the cell death phenotype was strongly reduced in the jasmonate resistant1 mutant background. We propose that adaptation to circadian stress regimes requires a normal cytokinin status which, acting primarily through the AHK3 receptor, supports circadian clock function to guard against the detrimental effects of circadian stress. PMID:27354555

  11. Detection of QTL for metabolic and agronomic traits in wheat with adjustments for variation at genetic loci that affect plant phenology.

    PubMed

    Hill, Camilla B; Taylor, Julian D; Edwards, James; Mather, Diane; Langridge, Peter; Bacic, Antony; Roessner, Ute

    2015-04-01

    Mapping of quantitative trait loci associated with levels of individual metabolites (mQTL) was combined with the mapping of agronomic traits to investigate the genetic basis of variation and co-variation in metabolites, agronomic traits, and plant phenology in a field-grown bread wheat population. Metabolome analysis was performed using liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry resulting in identification of mainly polar compounds, including secondary metabolites. A total of 558 metabolic features were obtained from the flag leaves of 179 doubled haploid lines, of which 197 features were putatively identified, mostly as alkaloids, flavonoids and phenylpropanoids. Coordinated genetic control was observed for several groups of metabolites, such as organic acids influenced by two loci on chromosome 7A. Five major phenology-related loci, which were introduced as cofactors in the analyses, differed in their impact upon metabolic and agronomic traits with QZad-aww-7A having more impact on the expression of both metabolite and agronomic QTL than Ppd-B1, Vrn-A1, Eps, and QZad-aww-7D. This QTL study validates the utility of combining agronomic and metabolomic traits as an approach to identify potential trait enhancement targets for breeding selection and reinforces previous results that demonstrate the importance of including plant phenology in the assessment of useful traits in this wheat mapping population. PMID:25711822

  12. Circadian Stress Regimes Affect the Circadian Clock and Cause Jasmonic Acid-Dependent Cell Death in Cytokinin-Deficient Arabidopsis Plants[OPEN

    PubMed Central

    Nitschke, Silvia; Cortleven, Anne; Iven, Tim; Havaux, Michel; Schmülling, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    The circadian clock helps plants measure daylength and adapt to changes in the day-night rhythm. We found that changes in the light-dark regime triggered stress responses, eventually leading to cell death, in leaves of Arabidopsis thaliana plants with reduced cytokinin levels or defective cytokinin signaling. Prolonged light treatment followed by a dark period induced stress and cell death marker genes while reducing photosynthetic efficiency. This response, called circadian stress, is also characterized by altered expression of clock and clock output genes. In particular, this treatment strongly reduced the expression of CIRCADIAN CLOCK ASSOCIATED1 (CCA1) and LATE ELONGATED HYPOCOTYL (LHY). Intriguingly, similar changes in gene expression and cell death were observed in clock mutants lacking proper CCA1 and LHY function. Circadian stress caused strong changes in reactive oxygen species- and jasmonic acid (JA)-related gene expression. The activation of the JA pathway, involving the accumulation of JA metabolites, was crucial for the induction of cell death, since the cell death phenotype was strongly reduced in the jasmonate resistant1 mutant background. We propose that adaptation to circadian stress regimes requires a normal cytokinin status which, acting primarily through the AHK3 receptor, supports circadian clock function to guard against the detrimental effects of circadian stress. PMID:27354555

  13. Plant water status, ethylene evolution, N(2)-fixing efficiency, antioxidant activity and lipid peroxidation in Cicer arietinum L. nodules as affected by short-term salinization and desalinization.

    PubMed

    Nandwal, Ajit Singh; Kukreja, Sarvjeet; Kumar, Neeraj; Sharma, Praveen Kumar; Jain, Monika; Mann, Anita; Singh, Sunder

    2007-09-01

    Salinity induced changes in ethylene evolution, antioxidant defense system, N(2)-fixing efficiency and membrane integrity in relation to water and mineral status in chickpea (Cicer arietinum L.) nodules were studied under screen house conditions. At vegetative stage (55-65 DAS) plants were exposed to single saline irrigation (Cl(-) dominated) of levels 0, 2.5, 5.0 and 10.0dSm(-1) and sampled after 3d. The other set of treated plants was desalinized by flooding and the plants were sampled after further 3d. Water potential (Psiw) of leaf and osmotic potential (Psis) of leaf and nodules significantly decreased from -0.44 to -0.56MPa and from -0.65 to -1.15MPa and from -0.75 to -1.77MPa, respectively upon salinization. RWC of leaf and nodules also reduced from 86.05% to 73.30% and 94.70% to 89.98%, respectively. The decline in Psis of nodules was due to accumulation of proline and total soluble sugar. In comparison to control, the increase in ethylene (C(2)H(4)) production was 35-108% higher and correspondingly increase in 1-aminocycloprane-1-carboxylic acid (ACC) content (37-126%) and ACC oxidase activity (31-118%) was also noticed. Similarly, marked increase in H(2)O(2) (25-139%) and thiobarbituric acid substances (TBRAS, 11-133%) contents was seen. N(2)-fixing efficiency i.e. N(2)-ase activity, leghemoglobin and N contents of nodules declined significantly after saline irrigation. The induction in specific activity of antioxidant enzymes was confirmed by the increase in activity of superoxide dismutase, peroxidase, ascorbate peroxidase, glutathione reductase and glutathione transferase, whereas reverse was true for catalase. These activated enzymes could not overcome the accumulation of H(2)O(2) in nodules. Ascorbic acid content also declined from 20 to 38%, whereas Na(+)/K(+) ratio and Cl(-) content were significantly enhanced. Upon desalinization, a partial recovery in all above metabolic processes and water relations parameters was noticed. It is suggested that

  14. Assessment of committed effective dose due to the ingestion of (210)Po and (210)Pb in consumed Lebanese fish affected by a phosphate fertilizer plant.

    PubMed

    Aoun, M; El Samad, O; Bou Khozam, R; Lobinski, R

    2015-02-01

    Ingestion of radionuclides through seafood intake is a one of the sources contributing to the internal effective dose in the human organism. In order to evaluate the internal exposure and potential risks due to (210)Po and (210)Pb associated with fish consumption, these radionuclides were measured in commonly consumed fish species from a clean area and an area subjected to the impact of a Lebanese phosphate fertilizer plant. The highest concentration of (210)Pb was 98.7 Bq/kg fresh weight while (210)Po activity concentrations varied from 3.6 Bq/kg to 140 Bq/kg. A supplementary radiation exposure was detected; the highest committed effective dose due to (210)Po and (210)Pb was found to be 1110 μSv/y and 450 μSv/y, respectively. Moreover, the average mortality and morbidity risks due to the fish consuming were estimated. PMID:25461512

  15. Effective Antibiotics against ‘Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus’ in HLB-Affected Citrus Plants Identified via the Graft-Based Evaluation

    PubMed Central

    Powell, Charles A.; Doud, Melissa S.; Yang, Chuanyu; Duan, Yongping

    2014-01-01

    Citrus huanglongbing (HLB), caused by three species of fastidious, phloem-limited ‘Candidatus Liberibacter’, is one of the most destructive diseases of citrus worldwide. To date, there is no established cure for this century-old and yet, newly emerging disease. As a potential control strategy for citrus HLB, 31 antibiotics were screened for effectiveness and phytotoxicity using the optimized graft-based screening system with ‘Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus’ (Las)-infected citrus scions. Actidione and Oxytetracycline were the most phytotoxic to citrus with less than 10% of scions surviving and growing; therefore, this data was not used in additional analyses. Results of principal component (PCA) and hierarchical clustering analyses (HCA) demonstrated that 29 antibiotics were clustered into 3 groups: highly effective, partly effective, and not effective. In spite of different modes of actions, a number of antibiotics such as, Ampicillin, Carbenicillin, Penicillin, Cefalexin, Rifampicin and Sulfadimethoxine were all highly effective in eliminating or suppressing Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus indicated by both the lowest Las infection rate and titers of the treated scions and inoculated rootstock. The non-effective group, including 11 antibiotics alone with three controls, such as Amikacin, Cinoxacin, Gentamicin, Kasugamycin, Lincomycin, Neomycin, Polymixin B and Tobramycin, did not eliminate or suppress Las in the tested concentrations, resulting in plants with increased titers of Las. The other 12 antibiotics partly eliminated or suppressed Las in the treated and graft-inoculated plants. The effective and non-phytotoxic antibiotics could be potential candidates for control of citrus HLB, either for the rescue of infected citrus germplasm or for restricted field application. PMID:25372135

  16. Different types of stainless steel used in equipment in meat plants do not affect the initial microbial transfer, including pathogens, from pork skin

    PubMed Central

    Larivière-Gauthier, Guillaume; Quessy, Sylvain; Fournaise, Sylvain; Letellier, Ann; Fravalo, Philippe

    2015-01-01

    This study describes and measures the impact of different compositions and finishes of stainless steel used in equipment in the meat industry on the transfer of natural flora and selected pathogens from artificially contaminated pork skin. It is known that the adhesion to surfaces of Listeria monocytogenes and Salmonella, 2 pathogens frequently found in contaminated pork meat, depends on the nature and roughness of the surface. Our results show no statistically significant differences in microbial transfer regardless of the types of stainless steel considered, with the highest measured transfer difference being 0.18 log colony-forming units (CFUs)/800 cm2. Moreover, no differences in total microbial community were observed after transfer on the 5 types of stainless steel using single-strand conformation polymorphism (SSCP). It was concluded that the different characteristics of the stainless steel tested did not affect the initial bacterial transfer in this study. PMID:26130860

  17. Natural radionuclide of Po210 in the edible seafood affected by coal-fired power plant industry in Kapar coastal area of Malaysia

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Po210 can be accumulated in various environmental materials, including marine organisms, and contributes to the dose of natural radiation in seafood. The concentration of this radionuclide in the marine environment can be influenced by the operation of a coal burning power plant but existing studies regarding this issue are not well documented. Therefore, the aim of this study was to estimate the Po210 concentration level in marine organisms from the coastal area of Kapar, Malaysia which is very near to a coal burning power plant station and to assess its impact on seafood consumers. Methods Concentration of Po210 was determined in the edible muscle of seafood and water from the coastal area of Kapar, Malaysia using radiochemical separation and the Alpha Spectrometry technique. Results The activities of Po210 in the dissolved phase of water samples ranged between 0.51 ± 0.21 and 0.71 ± 0.24 mBql-1 whereas the particulate phase registered a range of 50.34 ± 11.40 to 72.07 ± 21.20 Bqkg-1. The ranges of Po210 activities in the organism samples were 4.4 ± 0.12 to 6.4 ± 0.95 Bqkg-1 dry wt in fish (Arius maculatus), 45.7 ± 0.86 to 54.4 ± 1.58 Bqkg-1 dry wt in shrimp (Penaeus merguiensis) and 104.3 ± 3.44 to 293.8 ± 10.04 Bqkg-1 dry wt in cockle (Anadara granosa). The variation of Po210 in organisms is dependent on the mode of their life style, ambient water concentration and seasonal changes. The concentration factors calculated for fish and molluscs were higher than the recommended values by the IAEA. An assessment of daily intake and received dose due to the consumption of seafood was also carried out and found to be 2083.85 mBqday-1person-1 and 249.30 μSvyr-1 respectively. These values are comparatively higher than reported values in other countries. Moreover, the transformation of Po210 in the human body was calculated and revealed that a considerable amount of Po210 can be absorbed in the internal organs. The calculated values of life time

  18. Isotopic ratio and vertical distribution of radionuclides in soil affected by the accident of Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plants.

    PubMed

    Fujiwara, Takeshi; Saito, Takumi; Muroya, Yusa; Sawahata, Hiroyuki; Yamashita, Yuji; Nagasaki, Shinya; Okamoto, Koji; Takahashi, Hiroyuki; Uesaka, Mitsuru; Katsumura, Yosuke; Tanaka, Satoru

    2012-11-01

    The results of γ analyses of soil samples obtained from 50 locations in Fukushima prefecture on April 20, 2011, revealed the presence of a spectrum of radionuclides resulted from the accident of the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant (FDNPP). The sum γ radioactivity concentration ranged in more than 3 orders of magnitude, depending on the sampling locations. The contamination of soils in the northwest of the FDNPP was considerable. The (131)I/(137)Cs activity ratios of the soil samples plotted as a function of the distance from the F1 NPPs exhibited three distinctive patterns. Such patterns would reflect not only the different deposition behaviors of these radionuclides, but also on the conditions of associated release events such as temperature and compositions and physicochemical forms of released radionuclides. The (136)Cs/(137)Cs activity ratio, on the other hand, was considered to only reflect the difference in isotopic compositions of source materials. Two locations close to the NPP in the northwest direction were found to be depleted in short-lived (136)Cs. This likely suggested the presence of distinct sources with different (136)Cs/(137)Cs isotopic ratios, although their details were unknown at present. Vertical γ activity profiles of (131)I and (137)Cs were also investigated, using 20-30 cm soil cores in several locations. About 70% or more of the radionuclides were present in the uppermost 2-cm regions. It was found that the profiles of (131)I/(137)Cs activity ratios showed maxima in the 2-4 cm regions, suggesting slightly larger migration of the former nuclide. PMID:22634028

  19. Three-year monitoring study of radiocesium transfer and ambient dose rate in forest environments affected by the Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Power Plant accident

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kato, Hiroaki; Onda, Yuichi; Loffredo, Nicolas; Kawamori, Ayumi; Hisadome, Keigo

    2015-04-01

    We investigated the transfer of canopy-intercepted radiocesium to the forest floor during 3 years (July 2011~) following the Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Power Plant accident. The cesium-137 (Cs-137) contents of throughfall, stemflow, and litterfall were monitored in two coniferous stands (plantation of Japanese cedar) and a deciduous broad-leaved forest stand (Japanese oak with red pine). We also measured an ambient dose rate at different height in the forest by using a survey meter (TCS-172B, Hitachi-Aloka Medical, LTD.) and a portable Ge gamma-ray detector (Detective-DX-100T, Ortec, Ametek, Inc.). Furthermore, effects of forest decontamination on the reduction of ambient dose rate were assessed quantitatively. Total Cs-137 deposition flux from the canopy to forest floor for the mature cedar, young cedar, and the mixed broad-leaved stands were 157 kBq/m^2, 167 kBq/m^2, and 54 kBq/m^2, respectively. These values correspond to 36%, 39% and 12% of total atmospheric input after the accident. The ambient dose rate showed an exponential decrease with time for all the forest sites, however the decreasing trend differed depending on the forest type. These data suggested that an ambient dose rate in forest environment can be variable in spatially and temporally reflecting the transfer of radiocesium from canopy to forest floor. We presented the analysis results of the relationship between radiocesium deposition flux and ambient dose rate at the forest floor. In addition to that, we reported the effects of forest decontamination (e.g., tree felling, removal of organic materials, woodchip pavement) on the reduction of ambient dose rate in the forest environment.

  20. ABA Is an Essential Signal for Plant Resistance to Pathogens Affecting JA Biosynthesis and the Activation of Defenses in Arabidopsis[W

    PubMed Central

    Adie, Bruce A.T.; Pérez-Pérez, Julián; Pérez-Pérez, Manuel M.; Godoy, Marta; Sánchez-Serrano, José-J.; Schmelz, Eric A.; Solano, Roberto

    2007-01-01

    Analyses of Arabidopsis thaliana defense response to the damping-off oomycete pathogen Pythium irregulare show that resistance to P. irregulare requires a multicomponent defense strategy. Penetration represents a first layer, as indicated by the susceptibility of pen2 mutants, followed by recognition, likely mediated by ERECTA receptor-like kinases. Subsequent signaling of inducible defenses is predominantly mediated by jasmonic acid (JA), with insensitive coi1 mutants showing extreme susceptibility. In contrast with the generally accepted roles of ethylene and salicylic acid cooperating with or antagonizing, respectively, JA in the activation of defenses against necrotrophs, both are required to prevent disease progression, although much less so than JA. Meta-analysis of transcriptome profiles confirmed the predominant role of JA in activation of P. irregulare–induced defenses and uncovered abscisic acid (ABA) as an important regulator of defense gene expression. Analysis of cis-regulatory sequences also revealed an unexpected overrepresentation of ABA response elements in promoters of P. irregulare–responsive genes. Subsequent infections of ABA-related and callose-deficient mutants confirmed the importance of ABA in defense, acting partly through an undescribed mechanism. The results support a model for ABA affecting JA biosynthesis in the activation of defenses against this oomycete. PMID:17513501

  1. Rootstock and fruit canopy position affect peach [Prunus persica (L.) Batsch] (cv. Rich May) plant productivity and fruit sensorial and nutritional quality.

    PubMed

    Gullo, Gregorio; Motisi, Antonio; Zappia, Rocco; Dattola, Agostino; Diamanti, Jacopo; Mezzetti, Bruno

    2014-06-15

    The right combination of rootstock and training system is important for increased yield and fruit sensorial and nutritional homogeneity and quality with peach [Prunus persica (L.) Batsch]. We investigated the effects of rootstock and training system on these parameters, testing the effect of vigorous GF677 and weaker Penta rootstock on 'Rich May' peach cultivar. Fruit position effects regarding photosynthetically active radiation availability, along the canopy profile using the Y training system, were investigated. The positive relationships between total polyphenols content and antioxidant capacity according to canopy vigour and architecture were determined for the two scion/stock combinations. Changes in fruit epicarp colour and content of bioactive compounds were also determined. Lower-vigour trees from Penta rootstock grafting yielded larger fruit with improved skin overcolour, and greater total polyphenols content and antioxidant capacity. GF677 rootstock produced more vigorous trees with fruit with lower sensorial and nutritional parameters. Canopy position strongly affects fruit sensorial and nutritional qualities. These data define potential for improvements to peach production efficiency and fruit quality, particularly for southern Europe peach cultivation conditions. PMID:24491725

  2. Characteristics of initial deposition and behavior of radiocesium in forest ecosystems of different locations and species affected by the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant accident.

    PubMed

    Komatsu, Masabumi; Kaneko, Shinji; Ohashi, Shinta; Kuroda, Katsushi; Sano, Tetsuya; Ikeda, Shigeto; Saito, Satoshi; Kiyono, Yoshiyuki; Tonosaki, Mario; Miura, Satoru; Akama, Akio; Kajimoto, Takuya; Takahashi, Masamichi

    2016-09-01

    After the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant (FDNPP) accident, information about stand-level spatial patterns of radiocesium initially deposited in the surrounding forests was essential for predicting the future dynamics of radiocesium and suggesting a management plan for contaminated forests. In the first summer (approximately 6 months after the accident), we separately estimated the amounts of radiocesium ((134)Cs and (137)Cs; Bq m(-2)) in the major components (trees, organic layers, and soils) in forests of three sites with different contamination levels. For a Japanese cedar (Cryptomeria japonica) forest studied at each of the three sites, the radiocesium concentration greatly differed among the components, with the needle and organic layer having the highest concentrations. For these cedar forests, the proportion of the (137)Cs stock in the aboveground tree biomass varied from 22% to 44% of the total (137)Cs stock; it was 44% in highly contaminated sites (7.0 × 10(5) Bq m(-2)) but reduced to 22% in less contaminated sites (1.1 × 10(4) Bq m(-2)). In the intermediate contaminated site (5.0-5.8 × 10(4) Bq m(-2)), 34% of radiocesium was observed in the aboveground tree biomass of the Japanese cedar stand. However, this proportion was considerably smaller (18-19%) in the nearby mixed forests of the Japanese red pine (Pinus densiflora) and deciduous broad-leaved trees. Non-negligible amounts of (134)Cs and (137)Cs were detected in both the sapwood and heartwood of all the studied tree species. This finding suggested that the uptake or translocation of radiocesium had already started within 6 months after the accident. The belowground compartments were mostly present in the organic layer and the uppermost (0-5 cm deep) mineral soil layer at all the study sites. We discussed the initial transfer process of radiocesium deposited in the forest and inferred that the type of initial deposition (i.e., dry versus wet radiocesium deposition), the amount of

  3. Affective Learning.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brown, Charles T.

    This paper addresses itself to the question, "What does feeling have to do with knowing?" Two movements in affective education are discussed which have come into focus in recent years and which attempt to define the relationship between knowing and feeling. The first, a conscious application of the role of arousal in learning, emphasizes arousal…

  4. Whole body counter assessment of internal radiocontamination in patients with end-stage renal disease living in areas affected by the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant disaster: a retrospective observational study

    PubMed Central

    Shimmura, Hiroaki; Tsubokura, Masaharu; Kato, Shigeaki; Akiyama, Junichi; Nomura, Shuhei; Mori, Jinichi; Tanimoto, Tetsuya; Abe, Koichiro; Sakai, Shuji; Kawaguchi, Hiroshi; Tokiwa, Michio

    2015-01-01

    Objective To assess internal radiocontamination of patients with end-stage renal disease (ESRD) who were regularly taking haemodialysis (HD) and living in areas affected by the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant after the Great East Japan earthquake on 11 March 2011. Methods Internal radiocontamination in 111 patients with ESRD regularly taking HD at Jyoban Hospital in Iwaki city, Fukushima from July 2012 to November 2012 was assessed with a whole body counter (WBC). The maximum annual effective dose was calculated from the detected Cs-137 levels. Interviews concerning patient dietary preferences and outdoor activities were also conducted. Results Among the 111 patients tested, internal radiocontamination with Cs-137 was detected in two participants, but the levels were marginal and just exceeded the detection limit (250 Bq/body). The tentatively calculated maximum annual effective dose ranged from 0.008 to 0.009 mSv/year, which is far below the 1 mSv/year limit set by the government of Japan. Relative to 238 non-ESRD participants, patients with ERSD had significantly more opportunities to consume locally grown produce that was not distributed to the market (p<0.01). However, the percentage of patients with ESRD with detectable Cs (1.8%) was lower than that for non-ESRD participants (3.8%), although this difference was not significant (p=0.51). Conclusions These findings suggest that internal radiocontamination levels and the calculated annual additional effective doses were negligible for patients with ESRD taking HD in areas affected by the crippled Fukushima nuclear plant. Although HD is suggested to promote Cs-137 excretion, continuous inspection of locally grown produce together with WBC screening for radiocontamination should be continued for patients with ESRD regularly taking HD. PMID:26644125

  5. Morphological variation of Aechmea distichantha (Bromeliaceae) in a Chaco forest: habitat and size-related effects.

    PubMed

    Cavallero, L; López, D; Barberis, I M

    2009-05-01

    Plants show different morphologies when growing in different habitats, but they also vary in their morphology with plant size. We examined differences in sun- and shade-grown plants of the bromeliad Aechmea distichantha with respect to relationships between plant size and variables related to plant architecture, biomass allocation and tank water dynamics. We selected vegetative plants from the understorey and from forest edges of a Chaco forest, encompassing the whole size range of this bromeliad. Plant biomass was positively correlated with most architectural variables and negatively correlated with most biomass allocation variables. Understorey plants were taller and had larger diameters, whereas sun plants had more leaves, larger sheath area, sheath biomass and sheath mass fraction. All tank water-related variables were positively correlated with plant biomass. Understorey plants had a greater projected leaf area, whereas sun plants had higher water content and evaporative area. Plasticity indices were higher for water-related than for allocation variables. In conclusion, there were architectural and biomass allocation differences between sun- and shade-grown plants along a size gradient, which, in turn, affected tank water-related variables. PMID:19470109

  6. Arabidopsis nucleolin affects plant development and patterning.

    PubMed

    Petricka, Jalean Joyanne; Nelson, Timothy Mark

    2007-05-01

    Nucleolin is a major nucleolar protein implicated in many aspects of ribosomal biogenesis, including early events such as processing of the large 35S preribosomal RNA. We found that the Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) parallel1 (parl1) mutant, originally identified by its aberrant leaf venation, corresponds to the Arabidopsis nucleolin gene. parl1 mutants display parallel leaf venation, aberrant localization of the provascular marker Athb8:beta-glucuronidase, the auxin-sensitive reporter DR5:beta-glucuronidase, and auxin-dependent growth defects. PARL1 is highly similar to the yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae) nucleolin NUCLEAR SIGNAL RECOGNITION 1 (NSR1) multifunctional protein; the Arabidopsis PARL1 gene can rescue growth defects of yeast nsr1 null mutants. This suggests that PARL1 protein may have roles similar to those of the yeast nucleolin in nuclear signal recognition, ribosomal processing, and ribosomal subunit accumulation. Based on the range of auxin-related defects in parl1 mutants, we propose that auxin-dependent organ growth and patterning is highly sensitive to the efficiency of nucleolin-dependent ribosomal processing. PMID:17369435

  7. Plant phenolics affect oxidation of tryptophan.

    PubMed

    Salminen, Hanna; Heinonen, Marina

    2008-08-27

    The effect of berry phenolics such as anthocyanins, ellagitannins, and proanthocyanidins from raspberry (Rubus idaeus), black currant (Ribes nigrum), and cranberry (Vaccinium oxycoccus) and byproducts of deoiling processes rich in phenolics such as rapeseed (Brassica rapa L.), camelina (Camelina sativa), and soy (Glycine max L.) as well as scots pine bark (Pinus sylvestris) was investigated in an H2O2-oxidized tryptophan (Trp) solution. The oxidation of Trp was analyzed with high-performance liquid chromatography using both fluorescence and diode array detection of Trp and its oxidation products. Mechanisms of antioxidative action of the phenolic compounds toward the oxidation of Trp were different as the pattern of Trp oxidation products varied with different phenolic compounds. The antioxidant protection toward oxidation of Trp was best provided with pine bark phenolics, black currant anthocyanins, and camelina meal phenolics as well as cranberry proanthocyanidins. PMID:18646765

  8. [Affective dependency].

    PubMed

    Scantamburlo, G; Pitchot, W; Ansseau, M

    2013-01-01

    Affective dependency is characterized by emotional distress (insecure attachment) and dependency to another person with a low self-esteem and reassurance need. The paper proposes a reflection on the definition of emotional dependency and the confusion caused by various denominations. Overprotective and authoritarian parenting, cultural and socio-environmental factors may contribute to the development of dependent personality. Psychological epigenetic factors, such as early socio-emotional trauma could on neuronal circuits in prefronto-limbic regions that are essential for emotional behaviour.We also focus on the interrelations between dependent personality, domestic violence and addictions. The objective for the clinician is to propose a restoration of self-esteem and therapeutic strategies focused on autonomy. PMID:23888587

  9. Plant stress signalling: understanding and exploiting plant-plant interactions.

    PubMed

    Pickett, J A; Rasmussen, H B; Woodcock, C M; Matthes, M; Napier, J A

    2003-02-01

    When plants are attacked by insects, volatile chemical signals can be released, not only from the damaged parts, but also systemically from other parts of the plant and this continues after cessation of feeding by the insect. These signals are perceived by olfactory sensory mechanisms in both the herbivorous insects and their parasites. Molecular structures involved can be characterized by means of electrophysiological assays, using the insect sensory system linked to chemical analysis. Evidence is mounting that such signals can also affect neighbouring intact plants, which initiate defence by the induction of further signalling systems, such as those that increase parasitoid foraging. Furthermore, insect electrophysiology can be used in the identification of plant compounds having effects on the plants themselves. It has been found recently that certain plants can release stress signals even when undamaged, and that these can cause defence responses in intact plants. These discoveries provide the basis for new crop protection strategies, that are either delivered by genetic modification of plants or by conventionally produced plants to which the signal is externally applied. Delivery can also be made by means of mixed seed strategies in which the provoking and recipient plants are grown together. Related signalling discoveries within the rhizosphere seem set to extend these approaches into new ways of controlling weeds, by exploiting the elusive potential of allelopathy, but through signalling rather than by direct physiological effects. PMID:12546668

  10. Plant and soil surface responses to a combination of shrub removal and grazing in a shrub-encroached woodland.

    PubMed

    Daryanto, Stefani; Eldridge, David J

    2010-12-01

    Shrub encroachment into open woodland is a widespread phenomenon in semi-arid woodlands worldwide. Encroachment or woody thickening, is thought to result from overgrazing, changes in fire regimes and increased atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations. Eighteen years after one-off shrub removal by ploughing we assessed the effects of four different land management systems resulting from two levels each of grazing (grazed, ungrazed) with and without ploughing, on the cover of landscape units, soil surface condition, diversity of understorey plants and density of shrubs. We recorded 2-7 times more patches under conventional conservation (unploughed-ungrazed) than the others treatments, and plant cover and diversity were greater on the two conservation (ungrazed) plots, irrespective of ploughing. Soils under shrubs and log mounds had greater indices of infiltration, stability and nutrients. Shrub density under the active pastoral (ploughed-grazed) treatment was two and a half times greater than that in other treatments, but results were not significant. The effects of different treatments on shrubs were largely species-specific. Overall, our results suggest that ploughing does not provide long-term control of encroaching shrubs. PMID:20696514

  11. Clinorotation affects soybean seedling morphology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hilaire, Emmanuel; Guikema, James A.; Brown, Christopher S.

    1995-01-01

    Although spaceflight does not appear to significantly affect seed germination, it can influence subsequent plant growth. On STS-3 and SL-2, decreased growth (measured as plant length, fresh weight, and dry weight) was noted for pine, oat, and mung bean. In the CHROMEX-01 and 02 experiments with Haplopappus and in the CHROMEX-03 experiment with Arabidopsis, enhanced root growth was noted in the space-grown plants. In the CHROMEX-04 experiments with wheat, both leaf fresh weight and leaf area were diminished in the space-grown plants but there was no difference in total plant height (CS Brown, HG Levine, and AD Krikorian, unpublished data). These data suggest that microgravity impacts growth by whole plant partitioning of the assimilates. The objective of the present study was to determine the influence of clinorotation on the growth and the morphology of soybean seedlings grown in the Biological Research In Canister (BRIC) flight hardware. This experiment provided baseline data for a spaceflight experiment (BRIC-3) flown on STS-63 (February 3-11, 1995).

  12. The soil microbial community composition and soil microbial carbon uptake are more affected by soil type than by different vegetation types (C3 and C4 plants) and seasonal changes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Griselle Mellado Vazquez, Perla; Lange, Markus; Gleixner, Gerd

    2016-04-01

    This study investigates the influence of different vegetation types (C3 and C4 plants), soil type and seasonal changes on the soil microbial biomass, soil microbial community composition and soil microbial carbon (C) uptake. We collected soil samples in winter (non-growing season) and summer (growing season) in 2012 from an experimental site cropping C3 and C4 plants for 6 years on two different soil types (sandy and clayey). The amount of phospholipid fatty acids (PLFAs) and their compound-specific δ13C values were used to determined microbial biomass and the flow of C from plants to soil microorganisms, respectively. Higher microbial biomass was found in the growing season. The microbial community composition was mainly explained by soil type. Higher amounts of SOC were driving the predominance of G+ bacteria, actinobacteria and cyclic G- bacteria in sandy soils, whereas root biomass was significantly related to the increased proportions of G- bacteria in clayey soils. Plant-derived C in G- bacteria increased significantly in clayey soils in the growing season. This increase was positively and significantly driven by root biomass. Moreover, changes in plant-derived C among microbial groups pointed to specific capabilities of different microbial groups to decompose distinct sources of C. We concluded that soil texture and favorable growth conditions driven by rhizosphere interactions are the most important factors controlling the soil microbial community. Our results demonstrate that a change of C3 plants vs. C4 plants has only a minor effect on the soil microbial community. Thus, such experiments are well suited to investigate soil organic matter dynamics as they allow to trace the C flow from plants into the soil microbial community without changing the community abundance and composition.

  13. Plant hydraulics as a hub integrating plant and ecosystem function

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Water plays a central role in plant biology and the efficiency of water transport throughout the plant (i.e., “plant hydraulics”) affects both photosynthetic rate and growth, an influence that scales up deterministically to the productivity of terrestrial ecosystems. Moreover, hydraulic traits media...

  14. Regulating nutrient allocation in plants

    DOEpatents

    Udvardi, Michael; Yang, Jiading; Worley, Eric

    2014-12-09

    The invention provides coding and promoter sequences for a VS-1 and AP-2 gene, which affects the developmental process of senescence in plants. Vectors, transgenic plants, seeds, and host cells comprising heterologous VS-1 and AP-2 genes are also provided. Additionally provided are methods of altering nutrient allocation and composition in a plant using the VS-1 and AP-2 genes.

  15. 40 CFR 60.190 - Applicability and designation of affected facility.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... Performance for Primary Aluminum Reduction Plants § 60.190 Applicability and designation of affected facility. (a) The affected facilities in primary aluminum reduction plants to which this subpart applies...

  16. 40 CFR 60.190 - Applicability and designation of affected facility.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... Performance for Primary Aluminum Reduction Plants § 60.190 Applicability and designation of affected facility. (a) The affected facilities in primary aluminum reduction plants to which this subpart applies...

  17. 40 CFR 60.190 - Applicability and designation of affected facility.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... Performance for Primary Aluminum Reduction Plants § 60.190 Applicability and designation of affected facility. (a) The affected facilities in primary aluminum reduction plants to which this subpart applies...

  18. 40 CFR 60.190 - Applicability and designation of affected facility.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... Performance for Primary Aluminum Reduction Plants § 60.190 Applicability and designation of affected facility. (a) The affected facilities in primary aluminum reduction plants to which this subpart applies...

  19. 40 CFR 60.540 - Applicability and designation of affected facilities.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... Performance for the Rubber Tire Manufacturing Industry § 60.540 Applicability and designation of affected... each of the following affected facilities in rubber tire manufacturing plants that commence... cementing operation in rubber tire manufacturing plants that commenced construction, modification,...

  20. 40 CFR 60.540 - Applicability and designation of affected facilities.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... Performance for the Rubber Tire Manufacturing Industry § 60.540 Applicability and designation of affected... each of the following affected facilities in rubber tire manufacturing plants that commence... cementing operation in rubber tire manufacturing plants that commenced construction, modification,...

  1. 40 CFR 60.540 - Applicability and designation of affected facilities.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... Performance for the Rubber Tire Manufacturing Industry § 60.540 Applicability and designation of affected... each of the following affected facilities in rubber tire manufacturing plants that commence... cementing operation in rubber tire manufacturing plants that commenced construction, modification,...

  2. Affective processing requires awareness.

    PubMed

    Lähteenmäki, Mikko; Hyönä, Jukka; Koivisto, Mika; Nummenmaa, Lauri

    2015-04-01

    Studies using backward masked emotional stimuli suggest that affective processing may occur outside visual awareness and imply primacy of affective over semantic processing, yet these experiments have not strictly controlled for the participants' awareness of the stimuli. Here we directly compared the primacy of affective versus semantic categorization of biologically relevant stimuli in 5 experiments (n = 178) using explicit (semantic and affective discrimination; Experiments 1-3) and implicit (semantic and affective priming; Experiments 4-5) measures. The same stimuli were used in semantic and affective tasks. Visual awareness was manipulated by varying exposure duration of the masked stimuli, and subjective level of stimulus awareness was measured after each trial using a 4-point perceptual awareness scale. When participants reported no awareness of the stimuli, semantic and affective categorization were at chance level and priming scores did not differ from zero. When participants were even partially aware of the stimuli, (a) both semantic and affective categorization could be performed above chance level with equal accuracy, (b) semantic categorization was faster than affective categorization, and (c) both semantic and affective priming were observed. Affective categorization speed was linearly dependent on semantic categorization speed, suggesting dependence of affective processing on semantic recognition. Manipulations of affective and semantic categorization tasks revealed a hierarchy of categorization operations beginning with basic-level semantic categorization and ending with superordinate level affective categorization. We conclude that both implicit and explicit affective and semantic categorization is dependent on visual awareness, and that affective recognition follows semantic categorization. PMID:25559654

  3. Long-term nitrogen additions increase likelihood of climate stress and affect recovery from wildfire in a lowland heath.

    PubMed

    Southon, Georgina E; Green, Emma R; Jones, Alan G; Barker, Chris G; Power, Sally A

    2012-09-01

    Increases in the emissions and associated atmospheric deposition of nitrogen (N) have the potential to cause significant changes to the structure and function of N-limited ecosystems. Here, we present the results of a long-term (13 year) experiment assessing the impacts of N addition (30 kg ha(-1)  yr(-1) ) on a UK lowland heathland under a wide range of environmental conditions, including the occurrence of prolonged natural drought episodes and a severe summer fire. Our findings indicate that elevated N deposition results in large, persistent effects on Calluna growth, phenology and chemistry, severe suppression of understorey lichen flora and changes in soil biogeochemistry. Growing season rainfall was found to be a strong driver of inter-annual variation in Calluna growth and, although interactions between N and rainfall for shoot growth were not significant until the later phase of the experiment, N addition exacerbated the extent of drought injury to Calluna shoots following naturally occurring droughts in 2003 and 2009. Following a severe wildfire at the experimental site in 2006, heathland regeneration dynamics were significantly affected by N, with a greater abundance of pioneering moss species and suppression of the lichen flora in plots receiving N additions. Significant interactions between climate and N were also apparent post fire, with the characteristic stimulation in Calluna growth in +N plots suppressed during dry years. Carbon (C) and N budgets demonstrate large increases in both above- and below-ground stocks of these elements in N-treated plots prior to the fire, despite higher levels of soil microbial activity and organic matter turnover. Although much of the organic material was removed during the fire, pre-existing treatment differences were still evident following the burn. Post fire accumulation of below-ground C and N stocks was increased rapidly in N-treated plots, highlighting the role of N deposition in ecosystem C sequestration

  4. Considering Plants.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Flannery, Maura C.

    1991-01-01

    Examples from research that incorporate plants to illustrate biological principles are presented. Topics include dried pea shape, homeotic genes, gene transcription in plants that are touched or wounded, production of grasslands, seaweed defenses, migrating plants, camouflage, and family rivalry. (KR)

  5. Power Quality Aspects in a Wind Power Plant: Preprint

    SciTech Connect

    Muljadi, E.; Butterfield, C. P.; Chacon, J.; Romanowitz, H.

    2006-01-01

    Although many operational aspects affect wind power plant operation, this paper focuses on power quality. Because a wind power plant is connected to the grid, it is very important to understand the sources of disturbances that affect the power quality.

  6. EFFECTS OF ACID PRECIPITATION ON PLANT DISEASES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Most plant diseases consist of delicate interactions between higher plants and microorganisms. Acidic precipitation represents an environmental stress that has been shown to affect expected development of some diseases and similar phenomena under experimental conditions. From the...

  7. Does the type of weight loss diet affect who participates in a behavioral weight loss intervention? A comparison of participants for a plant-based diet versus a standard diet trial.

    PubMed

    Turner-McGrievy, Gabrielle M; Davidson, Charis R; Wilcox, Sara

    2014-02-01

    Studies have found that people following plant-based eating styles, such as vegan or vegetarian diets, often have different demographic characteristics, eating styles, and physical activity (PA) levels than individuals following an omnivorous dietary pattern. There has been no research examining if there are differences in these characteristics among people who are willing to participate in a weight loss intervention using plant-based dietary approaches as compared to a standard reduced calorie approach, which does not exclude food groups. The present study compared baseline characteristics (demographics, dietary intake, eating behaviors (Eating Behavior Inventory), and PA (Paffenbarger Physical Activity Questionnaire)) of participants enrolling in two different 6-month behavioral weight loss studies: the mobile Pounds Off Digitally (mPOD) study, which used a standard reduced calorie dietary approach and the New Dietary Interventions to Enhance the Treatments for weight loss (New DIETs) study, which randomized participants to follow one of five different dietary approaches (vegan, vegetarian, pesco-vegetarian, semi-vegetarian, or omnivorous diets). There were no differences in baseline demographics with the exception of New DIETs participants being older (48.5±8.3years versus 42.9±11.2, P=0.001) and having a higher Body Mass Index (BMI, 35.2±5.3kg/m(2) versus 32.6±4.7kg/m(2), P=0.001) than mPOD participants. In age- and BMI-adjusted models, there were no differences in EBI scores or in any dietary variables, with the exception of vitamin C (85.6±5.9mg/d mPOD versus 63.4±7.4mg/d New DIETs, P=0.02). New DIETs participants reported higher levels of intentional PA/day (180.0±18.1kcal/d) than mPOD participants (108.8±14.4kcal/d, P=0.003), which may have been the result of New DIETs study recommendations to avoid increasing or decreasing PA during the study. The findings of this study demonstrate that using plant-based dietary approaches for weight loss

  8. Does the type of weight loss diet affect who participates in a behavioral weight loss intervention? A comparison of participants for a plant-based diet versus a standard diet trial

    PubMed Central

    Turner-McGrievy, Gabrielle M.; Davidson, Charis R.; Wilcox, Sara

    2014-01-01

    Studies have found that people following plant-based eating styles, such as vegan or vegetarian diets, often have different demographic characteristics, eating styles, and physical activity (PA) levels than individuals following an omnivorous dietary pattern. There has been no research examining if there are differences in these characteristics among people who are willing to participate in a weight loss intervention using plant-based dietary approaches as compared to a standard reduced calorie approach, which doesn’t exclude food groups. The present study compared baseline characteristics (demographics, dietary intake, eating behaviors (Eating Behavior Inventory), and PA (Paffenbarger Physical Activity Questionnaire)) of participants enrolling in two different 6-month behavioral weight loss studies: the mobile Pounds Off Digitally (mPOD) study, which used a standard reduced calorie dietary approach and the New Dietary Interventions to Enhance the Treatments for weight loss (New DIETs) study, which randomized participants to follow one of five different dietary approaches (vegan, vegetarian, pesco-vegetarian, semi-vegetarian, or omnivorous diets). There were no differences in baseline demographics with the exception of New DIETs participants being older (48.5 ± 8.3 years vs. 42.9 ± 11.2, P=0.001) and having a higher Body Mass Index (BMI, 35.2 ± 5.3 kg/m2 vs. 32.6 ± 4.7 kg/m2, P=0.001) than mPOD participants. In age- and BMI-adjusted models, there were no differences in EBI scores or in any dietary variables, with the exception of vitamin C (85.6 ± 5.9 mg/d mPOD vs. 63.4 ± 7.4 mg/d New DIETs, P=0.02). New DIETs participants reported higher levels of intentional PA/day (180.0 ± 18.1 kcal/d) than mPOD participants (108.8 ± 14.4 kcal/d, P=0.003), which may have been the result of New DIETs study recommendations to avoid increasing or decreasing PA during the study. The findings of this study demonstrate that using plant-based dietary approaches for weight

  9. Plants in space

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ferl, Robert; Wheeler, Raymond; Levine, Howard G.; Paul, Anna Lisa

    2002-01-01

    Virtually all scenarios for the long-term habitation of spacecraft and other extraterrestrial structures involve plants as important parts of the contained environment that would support humans. Recent experiments have identified several effects of spaceflight on plants that will need to be more fully understood before plant-based life support can become a reality. The International Space Station (ISS) is the focus for the newest phase of space-based research, which should solve some of the mysteries of how spaceflight affects plant growth. Research carried out on the ISS and in the proposed terrestrial facility for Advanced Life Support testing will bring the requirements for establishing extraterrestrial plant-based life support systems into clearer focus.

  10. Affective Dynamics in Psychopathology

    PubMed Central

    Trull, Timothy J.; Lane, Sean P.; Koval, Peter; Ebner-Priemer, Ulrich W.

    2016-01-01

    We discuss three varieties of affective dynamics (affective instability, emotional inertia, and emotional differentiation). In each case, we suggest how these affective dynamics should be operationalized and measured in daily life using time-intensive methods, like ecological momentary assessment or ambulatory assessment, and recommend time-sensitive analyses that take into account not only the variability but also the temporal dependency of reports. Studies that explore how these affective dynamics are associated with psychological disorders and symptoms are reviewed, and we emphasize that these affective processes are within a nexus of other components of emotion regulation.

  11. ASSESSING OFF-TARGET IMPACTS OF HERBICIDE DRIFT ON NATIVE PLANTS - IMPLICATIONS FOR PLANT COMMUNITIES AND WILDLIFE

    EPA Science Inventory

    The off target movement of herbicidess onto nontarget vegetation can affect native plants, plant communities and ecosystems. Within the agroecosystem, plants provide the basis for food and shelter for wildlife. The risk assessment process to determine potential pesticide impacts...

  12. Will elevated CO2 alter fuel characteristics and flammability of eucalypt woodlands?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Collins, Luke; Resco, Victor; Boer, Matthias; Bradstock, Ross; Sawyer, Robert

    2016-04-01

    Rising atmospheric CO2 may enhance forest productivity via CO2 fertilisation and increased soil moisture associated with water savings, potentially resulting in increased woody plant abundance i.e. woody thickening. Changes to vegetation structure via woody thickening, as well as changes to vegetation properties (e.g. leaf characteristics and moisture content), may have important implications for ecosystem flammability and fire regimes. Understanding how elevated CO2 alters flammability and fire regimes will have implications for ecosystem dynamics, particularly carbon sequestration and emissions. We present data from Free Air CO2 Enrichment (EucFACE) and whole tree growth chamber (WTC) experiments to assess the effect of elevated CO2 on fuel properties and flammability of eucalypt woodlands. Experiments involved ambient (˜400 ppm) and elevated CO2treatments, with elevated treatments being +150 ppm and +240 ppm at EucFACE and the WTCs respectively. We examined the response of vegetation parameters known to influence ecosystem flammability, namely (i) understorey vegetation characteristics (ii) understorey fuel moisture and (iii) leaf flammability. Understorey growth experiments at EucFACE using seedlings of two common woody species (Hakea sericia, Eucalyptus tereticornis) indicate that elevated CO2 did not influence stem and leaf biomass, height or crown dimensions of seedlings after 12 months exposure to experimental treatments. Temporal changes to understorey live fuel moisture were assessed at EucFACE over an 18 month period using time lapse cameras. Understorey vegetation greenness was measured daily from digital photos using the green chromatic coordinate (GCC), an index that is highly correlated with live fuel moisture (R2 = 0.90). GCC and rates of greening and browning were not affected by elevated CO2, though they were highly responsive to soil moisture availability and temperature. This suggests that there is limited potential for elevated CO2 to alter

  13. [Dynamics of Radioecological State of the Fresh-Water Ecosystems Affected by a Long-Term Impact from Nuclear Power Plant in the Frontiers of the Zone under Observation].

    PubMed

    Trapeznikov, A V; Trapeznikova, V N; Korjavin, A V

    2015-01-01

    The results of radioecological studies of six small rivers situated in the surveillance zone of the Beloyarskaya NPP (BNPP) and around the cooling pond of the power plant are presented. 21 radionuclides and the total α- and β-activity were studied in the main components of the aquatic ecosystems. It is shown that after the 1st and 2nd BN PP blocks decommissioning the content of 60Co and 137Cs in the Beloyarskoye storage pond water, sediments, fish fauna and macrophytes dropped tens and hundreds of times. The fundamental importance of this fact is that in a large range of time the aquatic ecosystem mechanism of self-purification from radionuclides is working due to radioactive substances decay as well as redistribution of radionuclides from water to other components, primarily to the sediments. Of 6 small rivers the maximum levels of radioactive substances is found in the river Olkhovka, which for several years has been subjected to the low-level radioactive water discharges from Beloyarskaya NPP. The radionuclide content in the main components of the aquatic ecosystems of the other five rivers studied after BNPP 47-year operation period corresponds to the regional background. PMID:26310022

  14. Insect--plant adaptations.

    PubMed

    Southwood, T R

    1984-01-01

    The adaptation of insects to plants probably commenced in the early Permian period, though most current associations will be more recent. A major burst of adaptation must have followed the rise of the Angiosperms in the Cretaceous period, though some particular associations are as recent as this century. Living plants form a large proportion of the potential food in most habitats, though insects have had to overcome certain general hurdles to live and feed on them. Insects affect the reproduction and survival of plants, and thus the diversity of plant secondary chemicals may have evolved as a response. Where an insect species has a significant effect on a plant species that is its only host, coevolution may be envisaged. A spectacular example is provided by Heliconius butterflies and passion flower vines, studied by L.E. Gilbert and others. But such cases may be likened to 'vortices in the evolutionary stream': most plant species are influenced by a range of phytophagous insects so that selection will be for general defences--a situation termed diffuse coevolution. Evidence is presented on recent host-plant shifts to illustrate both the restrictions and the flexibility in current insect-plant associations. PMID:6559112

  15. Assessing Student Affect

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Popham, W. James

    2009-01-01

    Student affect--the attitudes, interests, and values that students exhibit and acquire in school--can play a profoundly important role in students' postschool lives, possibly an even more significant role than that played by students' cognitive achievements. If student affect is so crucial, then why don't teachers assess it? One deterrent is that…

  16. Affective Involvement Instrument.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lemlech, Johanna K.

    1970-01-01

    The Affective Involvement Instrument (AII) describes and classifies affective involvement in the process of decision-making as it occurs during classroom activities such as role-playing or group discussions. The thirty-celled instrument behaviorizes the six processes involved in decision-making and combines them with the taxonomic levels of the…

  17. Affectional Patterns of Adolescents.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    O'Donnell, William J.

    1979-01-01

    This study sought to determine if there is a shift with age in affection (1) from parents to friends, (2) from one parent to the other, and (3) from same-sex to opposite-sex friends. Subjects, eighth graders and eleventh graders, completed the Measurement of Family Affective Structure. (Author)

  18. Direct plant-plant facilitation in coastal wetlands: A review

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Liwen; Shao, Hongbo

    2013-03-01

    Coastal wetlands provide important ecosystem services to humanity, but human activity and climate change are rapidly degrading these ecosystems. Thus the conservation and restoration of coastal wetlands becomes an urgent issue. Species facilitation among plants has regained attention of ecologists recently. Many studies in coastal wetlands have revealed direct plant-plant facilitation influencing community structure and ecosystem function, thus improving our understanding of community organization and giving new directions for the restoration of degraded coastal wetlands. Our paper examines studies of direct plant-plant facilitation in coastal wetlands with an emphasis on tests of the stress gradient hypothesis and influences of species facilitation on species zonation, species diversity patterns, phylogenetic diversity and ecosystem function. Investigating how plant-plant facilitation affects ecosystem function is an important future direction, which can provide basic knowledge applicable to the preservation and recovery of coastal wetlands in these times of rapid global change.

  19. Effects of plants and plant products on the testis

    PubMed Central

    D'Cruz, Shereen Cynthia; Vaithinathan, Selvaraju; Jubendradass, Rajamanickam; Mathur, Premendu Prakash

    2010-01-01

    For centuries, plants and plant-based products have been used as a valuable and safe natural source of medicines for treating various ailments. The therapeutic potential of most of these plants could be ascribed to their anticancer, antidiabetic, hepatoprotective, cardioprotective, antispasmodic, analgesic and various other pharmacological properties. However, several commonly used plants have been reported to adversely affect male reproductive functions in wildlife and humans. The effects observed with most of the plant and plant-based products have been attributed to the antispermatogenic and/or antisteroidogenic properties of one or more active ingredients. This review discusses the detrimental effects of some of the commonly used plants on various target cells in the testis. A deeper insight into the molecular mechanisms of action of these natural compounds could pave the way for developing therapeutic strategies against their toxicity. PMID:20562897

  20. Poisonous Plants

    MedlinePlus

    ... Publications and Products Programs Contact NIOSH NIOSH POISONOUS PLANTS Recommend on Facebook Tweet Share Compartir Photo courtesy ... U.S. Department of Agriculture Many native and exotic plants are poisonous to humans when ingested or if ...