Sample records for assess plant diversity

  1. Rapid Assessment of Plant Diversity Patterns: A Methodology for Landscapes

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Thomas J. Stohlgren; Geneva W. Chong; Mohammed a. Kalkhan; Lisa D. Schell

    1997-01-01

    We present a rapid, cost-efficient methodology to link plantdiversity surveys from plots to landscapes using: (1) unbiasedsite selection based on remotely sensed information; (2) multi-scale field techniques to assess plant diversity; (3)mathematical models (species-area curves) to estimate thenumber of species in larger areas corrected for within-typeheterogeneity; and (4) mathematical techniques to estimatetotal species richness and patterns of plant diversity in

  2. A Brief Review of Molecular Techniques to Assess Plant Diversity

    PubMed Central

    Arif, Ibrahim A.; Bakir, Mohammad A.; Khan, Haseeb A.; Al Farhan, Ahmad H.; Al Homaidan, Ali A.; Bahkali, Ali H.; Sadoon, Mohammad Al; Shobrak, Mohammad

    2010-01-01

    Massive loss of valuable plant species in the past centuries and its adverse impact on environmental and socioeconomic values has triggered the conservation of plant resources. Appropriate identification and characterization of plant materials is essential for the successful conservation of plant resources and to ensure their sustainable use. Molecular tools developed in the past few years provide easy, less laborious means for assigning known and unknown plant taxa. These techniques answer many new evolutionary and taxonomic questions, which were not previously possible with only phenotypic methods. Molecular techniques such as DNA barcoding, random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD), amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP), microsatellites and single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) have recently been used for plant diversity studies. Each technique has its own advantages and limitations. These techniques differ in their resolving power to detect genetic differences, type of data they generate and their applicability to particular taxonomic levels. This review presents a basic description of different molecular techniques that can be utilized for DNA fingerprinting and molecular diversity analysis of plant species. PMID:20559503

  3. PLANT DIVERSITY

    EPA Science Inventory

    Habitat change statistics and species-area curves were used to estimate the effects of alternative future scenarios for agriculture on plant diversity in Iowa farmlands. Study areas were two watersheds in central Iowa of about 50 and 90 square kilometers, respectively. Future s...

  4. Assessing the diversity of bacterial communities associated with plants

    PubMed Central

    Andreote, Fernando Dini; Azevedo, João Lúcio; Araújo, Welington Luiz

    2009-01-01

    Plant–bacteria interactions result from reciprocal recognition between both species. These interactions are responsible for essential biological processes in plant development and health status. Here, we present a review of the methodologies applied to investigate shifts in bacterial communities associated with plants. A description of techniques is made from initial isolations to culture-independent approaches focusing on quantitative Polymerase Chain Reaction in real time (qPCR), Denaturing Gradient Gel Electrophoresis (DGGE), clone library construction and analysis, the application of multivariate analyses to microbial ecology data and the upcoming high throughput methodologies such as microarrays and pyrosequencing. This review supplies information about the development of traditional methods and a general overview about the new insights into bacterial communities associated with plants. PMID:24031382

  5. Assessment of cytochrome P450 sequences offers a useful tool for determining genetic diversity in higher plant species

    Microsoft Academic Search

    S. Yamanaka; E. Suzuki; M. Tanaka; Y. Takeda; J. A. Watanabe; K. N. Watanabe

    2003-01-01

    To investigate and develop new genetic tools for assessing genome-wide diversity in higher plant-species, polymorphisms of gene analogues of mammalian cytochrome P450 mono-oxygenases were studied. Data mining on Arabidopsis thaliana indicated that a small number of primer-sets derived from P450 genes could provide universal tools for the assessment of genome-wide genetic diversity in diverse plant species that do not have

  6. Understanding plant reproductive diversity.

    PubMed

    Barrett, Spencer C H

    2010-01-12

    Flowering plants display spectacular floral diversity and a bewildering array of reproductive adaptations that promote mating, particularly outbreeding. A striking feature of this diversity is that related species often differ in pollination and mating systems, and intraspecific variation in sexual traits is not unusual, especially among herbaceous plants. This variation provides opportunities for evolutionary biologists to link micro-evolutionary processes to the macro-evolutionary patterns that are evident within lineages. Here, I provide some personal reflections on recent progress in our understanding of the ecology and evolution of plant reproductive diversity. I begin with a brief historical sketch of the major developments in this field and then focus on three of the most significant evolutionary transitions in the reproductive biology of flowering plants: the pathway from outcrossing to predominant self-fertilization, the origin of separate sexes (females and males) from hermaphroditism and the shift from animal pollination to wind pollination. For each evolutionary transition, I consider what we have discovered and some of the problems that still remain unsolved. I conclude by discussing how new approaches might influence future research in plant reproductive biology. PMID:20008389

  7. Importance of genetic diversity assessment in crop plants and its recent advances: an overview of its analytical perspectives.

    PubMed

    Govindaraj, M; Vetriventhan, M; Srinivasan, M

    2015-01-01

    The importance of plant genetic diversity (PGD) is now being recognized as a specific area since exploding population with urbanization and decreasing cultivable lands are the critical factors contributing to food insecurity in developing world. Agricultural scientists realized that PGD can be captured and stored in the form of plant genetic resources (PGR) such as gene bank, DNA library, and so forth, in the biorepository which preserve genetic material for long period. However, conserved PGR must be utilized for crop improvement in order to meet future global challenges in relation to food and nutritional security. This paper comprehensively reviews four important areas; (i) the significance of plant genetic diversity (PGD) and PGR especially on agriculturally important crops (mostly field crops); (ii) risk associated with narrowing the genetic base of current commercial cultivars and climate change; (iii) analysis of existing PGD analytical methods in pregenomic and genomic era; and (iv) modern tools available for PGD analysis in postgenomic era. This discussion benefits the plant scientist community in order to use the new methods and technology for better and rapid assessment, for utilization of germplasm from gene banks to their applied breeding programs. With the advent of new biotechnological techniques, this process of genetic manipulation is now being accelerated and carried out with more precision (neglecting environmental effects) and fast-track manner than the classical breeding techniques. It is also to note that gene banks look into several issues in order to improve levels of germplasm distribution and its utilization, duplication of plant identity, and access to database, for prebreeding activities. Since plant breeding research and cultivar development are integral components of improving food production, therefore, availability of and access to diverse genetic sources will ensure that the global food production network becomes more sustainable. The pros and cons of the basic and advanced statistical tools available for measuring genetic diversity are briefly discussed and their source links (mostly) were provided to get easy access; thus, it improves the understanding of tools and its practical applicability to the researchers. PMID:25874132

  8. Importance of Genetic Diversity Assessment in Crop Plants and Its Recent Advances: An Overview of Its Analytical Perspectives

    PubMed Central

    Govindaraj, M.; Vetriventhan, M.; Srinivasan, M.

    2015-01-01

    The importance of plant genetic diversity (PGD) is now being recognized as a specific area since exploding population with urbanization and decreasing cultivable lands are the critical factors contributing to food insecurity in developing world. Agricultural scientists realized that PGD can be captured and stored in the form of plant genetic resources (PGR) such as gene bank, DNA library, and so forth, in the biorepository which preserve genetic material for long period. However, conserved PGR must be utilized for crop improvement in order to meet future global challenges in relation to food and nutritional security. This paper comprehensively reviews four important areas; (i) the significance of plant genetic diversity (PGD) and PGR especially on agriculturally important crops (mostly field crops); (ii) risk associated with narrowing the genetic base of current commercial cultivars and climate change; (iii) analysis of existing PGD analytical methods in pregenomic and genomic era; and (iv) modern tools available for PGD analysis in postgenomic era. This discussion benefits the plant scientist community in order to use the new methods and technology for better and rapid assessment, for utilization of germplasm from gene banks to their applied breeding programs. With the advent of new biotechnological techniques, this process of genetic manipulation is now being accelerated and carried out with more precision (neglecting environmental effects) and fast-track manner than the classical breeding techniques. It is also to note that gene banks look into several issues in order to improve levels of germplasm distribution and its utilization, duplication of plant identity, and access to database, for prebreeding activities. Since plant breeding research and cultivar development are integral components of improving food production, therefore, availability of and access to diverse genetic sources will ensure that the global food production network becomes more sustainable. The pros and cons of the basic and advanced statistical tools available for measuring genetic diversity are briefly discussed and their source links (mostly) were provided to get easy access; thus, it improves the understanding of tools and its practical applicability to the researchers. PMID:25874132

  9. Biodiversity in riverbank techniques for erosion control: assessment of animal and plant species diversity along a natural gradient.

    E-print Network

    Paris-Sud XI, Université de

    Biodiversity in riverbank techniques for erosion control: assessment of animal and plant species * Corresponding author: paul.cavaille@cemagref.fr Keywords: beetles, biodiversity, ecological restoration, plant.). However, whether such installations can accommodate natural biodiversity has not been well assessed

  10. Socioeconomics drive urban plant diversity

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Diane Hope; Corinna Gries; Weixing Zhu; William F. Fagan; Charles L. Redman; Nancy B. Grimm; Amy L. Nelson; Chris Martin; Ann Kinzig

    2003-01-01

    Spatial variation in plant diversity has been attributed to heterogeneity in resource availability for many ecosystems. However, urbanization has resulted in entire landscapes that are now occupied by plant communities wholly created by humans, in which diversity may reflect social, economic, and cultural influences in addition to those recognized by traditional ecological theory. Here we use data from a probability-based

  11. and traditional rural homegardens in Zululand to (1) assess the useful-plant diversity, (2) determine the origin of the species

    E-print Network

    and traditional rural homegardens in Zululand to (1) assess the useful-plant diversity, (2, and medicinals Bidens pilosa and Catharanthus roseus. A comparison between rural and peri-urban gardens revealed that rural gardens have a higher mean species richness (26 compared to 17), and 35% of the taxa are alien

  12. Understory plant diversity assessment of Eucalyptus plantations over three vegetation types in Yunnan, China

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Hua-Feng WangMaria; María Vanessa Lencinas; Cynthia Ross Friedman; Xiao-Ke Wang; Jiang-Xiao Qiu

    2011-01-01

    Biodiversity in managed plantations has become an important issue for long-term sustainability of ecosystems. The environmental\\u000a effects of plantations comprised of fast-growing introduced trees have been vigorously debated. On one hand, monocultures\\u000a have been said to exhaust resources, resulting in decreased biodiversity. Conversely, it has been stated that monocultures\\u000a may favor regeneration of undergrowth plants from surrounding forests, increasing biodiversity.

  13. Assessing effects of forecasted climate change on the diversity and distribution of European higher plants for 2050

    Microsoft Academic Search

    M. Bakkenes; J. R. M. Alkemade; F. Ihle; R. Leemans; J. B. Latour

    2002-01-01

    The rapidly increasing atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases may lead to significant changes in regional and seasonal climate patterns. Such changes can strongly influence the diversity and distribution of species and, therefore, affect ecosystems and biodiversity. To assess these changes we developed a model, called euromove. The model uses climate data from 1990 to 2050 as compiled from the image

  14. Plant Diversity in Paraguay

    NSDL National Science Digital Library

    2003-01-01

    This Web site contains a database of Paraguayan plant specimens from the Natural History Museum herbarium in London, as well as all records of collections made during a biological inventory of the Mbaracay Forest Nature Reserve (a project funded by the UK government's Darwin Initiative). In addition to the database, which is searchable by taxonomy or geography via convenient dropdown menus, visitors will find detailed background information on the Darwin Initiative, the vegetation of Paraguay, and the Mbaracay Forest Nature Reserve. The site's attractive and well-designed interface is an added bonus.

  15. Curvilinear effects of invasive plants on plant diversity: plant community invaded by Sphagneticola trilobata.

    PubMed

    Qi, Shan-Shan; Dai, Zhi-Cong; Zhai, De-Li; Chen, Si-Chong; Si, Chun-Can; Huang, Ping; Wang, Rui-Ping; Zhong, Qiong-Xin; Du, Dao-Lin

    2014-01-01

    The effects of invasive plants on the species diversity of plant communities are controversial, showing either a positive or negative linear relationship. Based on community data collected from forty 5 m×5 m plots invaded by Sphagneticola trilobata in eight cities across Hainan Island, China, we found S. trilobata decreased plant community diversity once its cover was beyond 10%. We demonstrated that the effects of invasive/native plants on the plant diversity of communities invaded by S. trilobata were curvilinear. These effects, which showed peaks under different degrees of vegetation cover, appeared not only for S. trilobata and all invasive plants, but also for all native plants. Invasive plants primarily had negative effects on plant diversity when they became abundant at a much lower cover level (less than 35%), compared with the native plants (over 60%). Thus, it is necessary to distinguish a range for assessing the effects of plants, especially invasive plants. Our results also confirmed that the invasion intensity of invasive alien plants increased with the intensity of local economic development. We highlight and further discuss the critical importance of curvilinear effects of biological invasion to provide ideas regarding the conservation of local biodiversity and the management of invasive plants. PMID:25426856

  16. Curvilinear Effects of Invasive Plants on Plant Diversity: Plant Community Invaded by Sphagneticola trilobata

    PubMed Central

    Zhai, De-Li; Chen, Si-Chong; Si, Chun-Can; Huang, Ping; Wang, Rui-Ping; Zhong, Qiong-Xin; Du, Dao-Lin

    2014-01-01

    The effects of invasive plants on the species diversity of plant communities are controversial, showing either a positive or negative linear relationship. Based on community data collected from forty 5 m×5 m plots invaded by Sphagneticola trilobata in eight cities across Hainan Island, China, we found S. trilobata decreased plant community diversity once its cover was beyond 10%. We demonstrated that the effects of invasive/native plants on the plant diversity of communities invaded by S. trilobata were curvilinear. These effects, which showed peaks under different degrees of vegetation cover, appeared not only for S. trilobata and all invasive plants, but also for all native plants. Invasive plants primarily had negative effects on plant diversity when they became abundant at a much lower cover level (less than 35%), compared with the native plants (over 60%). Thus, it is necessary to distinguish a range for assessing the effects of plants, especially invasive plants. Our results also confirmed that the invasion intensity of invasive alien plants increased with the intensity of local economic development. We highlight and further discuss the critical importance of curvilinear effects of biological invasion to provide ideas regarding the conservation of local biodiversity and the management of invasive plants. PMID:25426856

  17. Diversity in Assessment Procedures.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Boe, Barbara L.

    This paper looks at using collective critical thinking about issues as an assessment technique instead of or in addition to written tests. A substantial literature review examines the role of assessment and alternative strategies such as group oral exams in classes where cooperative activities and learning have been emphasized. The review reveals…

  18. Resource availability controls fungal diversity across a plant diversity gradient

    E-print Network

    Weiblen, George D

    and diversity within the experimental plant communities. We used soil microbial biomass as a temporally, diversity-productivity hypothesis. Ecology Letters (2006) 9: 1127­1135 IN T ROD U CTI ON Soils support communities, we presently lack a theoretical foundation to explain the wealth of microbial diversity in soil

  19. How does pedogenesis drive plant diversity?

    PubMed

    Laliberté, Etienne; Grace, James B; Huston, Michael A; Lambers, Hans; Teste, François P; Turner, Benjamin L; Wardle, David A

    2013-06-01

    Some of the most species-rich plant communities occur on ancient, strongly weathered soils, whereas those on recently developed soils tend to be less diverse. Mechanisms underlying this well-known pattern, however, remain unresolved. Here, we present a conceptual model describing alternative mechanisms by which pedogenesis (the process of soil formation) might drive plant diversity. We suggest that long-term soil chronosequences offer great, yet largely untapped, potential as 'natural experiments' to determine edaphic controls over plant diversity. Finally, we discuss how our conceptual model can be evaluated quantitatively using structural equation modeling to advance multivariate theories about the determinants of local plant diversity. This should help us to understand broader-scale diversity patterns, such as the latitudinal gradient of plant diversity. PMID:23561322

  20. Cenozoic plant diversity in the neotropics.

    PubMed

    Jaramillo, Carlos; Rueda, Milton J; Mora, Germán

    2006-03-31

    Several mechanisms have been proposed to explain the high levels of plant diversity in the Neotropics today, but little is known about diversification patterns of Neotropical floras through geological time. Here, we present the longest time series compiled for palynological plant diversity of the Neotropics (15 stratigraphic sections, 1530 samples, 1411 morphospecies, and 287,736 occurrences) from the Paleocene to the early Miocene (65 to 20 million years ago) in central Colombia and western Venezuela. The record shows a low-diversity Paleocene flora, a significantly more diverse early to middle Eocene flora exceeding Holocene levels, and a decline in diversity at the end of the Eocene and early Oligocene. A good correlation between diversity fluctuations and changes in global temperature was found, suggesting that tropical climate change may be directly driving the observed diversity pattern. Alternatively, the good correspondence may result from the control that climate exerts on the area available for tropical plants to grow. PMID:16574860

  1. Effects of herbivores on grassland plant diversity

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Han Olff; Mark E. Ritchie

    1998-01-01

    The role of herbivores in controlling plant species richness is a critical issue in the conservation and management of grassland biodiversity. Numerous field experiments in grassland plant communities show that herbivores often, but not always, increase plant diversity. Recent work suggests that the mechanisms of these effects involve alteration of local colonization of species from regional species pools or local

  2. Mycorrhizal fungal identity and diversity relaxes plant-plant competition.

    PubMed

    Wagg, Cameron; Jansa, Jan; Stadler, Marina; Schmid, Bernhard; van der Heijden, Marcel G A

    2011-06-01

    There is a great interest in ecology in understanding the role of soil microbial diversity for plant productivity and coexistence. Recent research has shown increases in species richness of mutualistic soil fungi, the arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF), to be related to increases in aboveground productivity of plant communities. However, the impact of AMF richness on plant-plant interactions has not been determined. Moreover, it is unknown whether species-rich AMF communities can act as insurance to maintain productivity in a fluctuating environment (e.g., upon changing soil conditions). We tested the impact of four different AMF taxa and of AMF diversity (no AMF, single AMF taxa, and all four together) on competitive interactions between the legume Trifolium pratense and the grass Lolium multiflorum grown under two different soil conditions of low and high sand content. We hypothesized that more diverse mutualistic interactions (e.g., when four AMF taxa are present) can ease competitive effects between plants, increase plant growth, and maintain plant productivity across different soil environments. We used quantitative PCR to verify that AMF taxa inoculated at the beginning of the experiment were still present at the end. The presence of AMF reduced the competitive inequality between the two plant species by reducing the growth suppression of the legume by the grass. High AMF richness enhanced the combined biomass production of the two plant species and the yield of the legume, particularly in the more productive soil with low sand content. In the less productive (high sand content) soil, the single most effective AMF had an equally beneficial effect on plant productivity as the mixture of four AMF. Since contributions of single AMF to plant productivity varied between both soils, higher AMF richness would be required to maintain plant productivity in heterogeneous environments. Overall this work shows that AMF diversity promotes plant productivity and that AMF diversity can act as insurance to sustain plant productivity under changing environmental conditions. PMID:21797158

  3. Plant Diversity of Central French Guiana

    NSDL National Science Digital Library

    From the New York Botanical Garden's Virtual Herbarium, this "specimen database of flowering plant collections is part of a larger project designed to document the fungal and plant diversity of central French Guiana." A greater goal of the project "is to provide the fungal and plant inventories needed for understanding the evolution and ecological relationships of the fungi, plants, and animals that inhabit this, one of the last tropical wilderness areas of the world." The website provides engines for basic searches as well as detailed searches with fields for Scientific Name (e.g. Family, Genus, Species), Collector/Number, Collector Location (e.g. Country, City, Province/State, County), Type Status, Substrate, and more. Site visitors can also locate specimen records by browsing a Families list and link to more information at the Fungal and Plant Diversity of Central French Guiana Homepage.

  4. Functional and phylogenetic diversity of woody plants drive herbivory in a highly diverse forest

    PubMed Central

    Schuldt, Andreas; Assmann, Thorsten; Bruelheide, Helge; Durka, Walter; Eichenberg, David; Härdtle, Werner; Kröber, Wenzel; Michalski, Stefan G; Purschke, Oliver

    2014-01-01

    Biodiversity loss may alter ecosystem processes, such as herbivory, a key driver of ecological functions in species-rich (sub)tropical forests. However, the mechanisms underlying such biodiversity effects remain poorly explored, as mostly effects of species richness – a very basic biodiversity measure – have been studied. Here, we analyze to what extent the functional and phylogenetic diversity of woody plant communities affect herbivory along a diversity gradient in a subtropical forest.We assessed the relative effects of morphological and chemical leaf traits and of plant phylogenetic diversity on individual-level variation in herbivory of dominant woody plant species across 27 forest stands in south-east China.Individual-level variation in herbivory was best explained by multivariate, community-level diversity of leaf chemical traits, in combination with community-weighted means of single traits and species-specific phylodiversity measures. These findings deviate from those based solely on trait variation within individual species.Our results indicate a strong impact of generalist herbivores and highlight the need to assess food-web specialization to determine the direction of biodiversity effects. With increasing plant species loss, but particularly with the concomitant loss of functional and phylogenetic diversity in these forests, the impact of herbivores will probably decrease – with consequences for the herbivore-mediated regulation of ecosystem functions. PMID:24460549

  5. A hierarchical perspective of plant diversity

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sarr, Daniel; Hibbs, D.E.; Huston, M.

    2005-01-01

    Predictive models of plant diversity have typically focused on either a landscapea??s capacity for richness (equilibrium models), or on the processes that regulate competitive exclusion, and thus allow species to coexist (nonequilibrium models). Here, we review the concepts and purposes of a hierarchical, multiscale model of the controls of plant diversity that incorporates the equilibrium model of climatic favorability at macroscales, nonequilibrium models of competition at microscales, and a mixed model emphasizing environmental heterogeneity at mesoscales. We evaluate the conceptual model using published data from three spatially nested datasets: (1) a macroscale analysis of ecoregions in the continental and western U.S.; (2) a mesoscale study in California; and (3) a microscale study in the Siskiyou Mountains of Oregon and California. At the macroscale (areas from 3889 km2 to 638,300 km2), climate (actual evaporation) was a strong predictor of tree diversity (R2 = 0.80), as predicted by the conceptual model, but area was a better predictor for vascular plant diversity overall (R2 = 0.38), which suggests different types of plants differ in their sensitivity to climatic controls. At mesoscales (areas from 1111 km2 to 15,833 km2 ), climate was still an important predictor of richness (R2 = 0.52), but, as expected, topographic heterogeneity explained an important share of the variance (R2 = 0.19), showed positive correlations with diversity of trees, shrubs, and annual and perennial herbs, and was the primary predictor of shrub and annual plant species richness. At microscales (0.1 ha plots), spatial patterns of diversity showed a clear unimodal pattern along a climatea??driven productivity gradient and a negative relationship with soil fertility. The strong decline in understory and total diversity at the most productive sites suggests that competitive controls, as predicted, can override climatic controls at this scale. We conclude that this hierarchical, multiscale model provides a sound basis to understand and analyze plant species diversity. Specifically, future research should employ the principles in this paper to explore climatic controls on species richness of different life forms, better quantify environmental heterogeneity in landscapes, and analyze how these largea??scale factors interact with local nonequilibrium dynamics to maintain plant diversity.

  6. The Tight Link: Beetle and Plant Diversity

    NSDL National Science Digital Library

    Payne, Laura X.

    1998-01-01

    This week's In The News focuses on the evolutionary link between beetle (Coleoptera) and flowering plant (Angiosperm) diversity. In an article published in the July 24, 1998 issue of Science, Harvard University evolutionary entomologist Brian Farrell shed new light on insect-plant evolution when he revealed "a tight link between plant and beetle diversity." Farrell found that the incredible diversity of beetles--a whopping 330,000 species are estimated today--is linked to the rise of the angiosperms some 100,000,000 years ago. According to Farrell, although some beetles maintained their preference for older plant classes such as cycads and conifers, "well over 100,000 new species of beetles arose because of that move to angiosperms." The significance of these findings, says Farrell, "show how moving into a new environment, where there's no competition, can free you for an explosive, adaptive radiation." The nine resources provided offer insights and information on beetle and plant diversity, and several evolutionary resources as well.

  7. Plant Functional Diversity and Species Diversity in the Mongolian Steppe

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Guofang; Xie, Xiufang; Ye, Duo; Ye, Xuehua; Tuvshintogtokh, Indree; Mandakh, Bayart; Huang, Zhenying; Dong, Ming

    2013-01-01

    Background The Mongolian steppe is one of the most important grasslands in the world but suffers from aridization and damage from anthropogenic activities. Understanding structure and function of this community is important for the ecological conservation, but has seldom been investigated. Methodology/Principal Findings In this study, a total of 324 quadrats located on the three main types of Mongolian steppes were surveyed. Early-season perennial forbs (37% of total importance value), late-season annual forbs (33%) and late-season perennial forbs (44%) were dominant in meadow, typical and desert steppes, respectively. Species richness, diversity and plant functional type (PFT) richness decreased from the meadow, via typical to desert steppes, but evenness increased; PFT diversity in the desert and meadow steppes was higher than that in typical steppe. However, above-ground net primary productivity (ANPP) was far lower in desert steppe than in the other two steppes. In addition, the slope of the relationship between species richness and PFT richness increased from the meadow, via typical to desert steppes. Similarly, with an increase in species diversity, PFT diversity increased more quickly in both the desert and typical steppes than that in meadow steppe. Random resampling suggested that this coordination was partly due to a sampling effect of diversity. Conclusions/Significance These results indicate that desert steppe should be strictly protected because of its limited functional redundancy, which its ecological functioning is sensitive to species loss. In contrast, despite high potential forage production shared by the meadow and typical steppes, management of these two types of steppes should be different: meadow steppe should be preserved due to its higher conservation value characterized by more species redundancy and higher spatial heterogeneity, while typical steppe could be utilized moderately because its dominant grass genus Stipa is resistant to herbivory and drought. PMID:24116233

  8. Fossil plant self assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Bozgo, R.H. [Consolidated Edison Company of New York, Inc., New York, NY (United States); Maguire, B.A. [VPA Corp., Reston, VA (United States)

    1996-07-01

    The increasingly competitive environment of the electric utility business is focusing utilities attention on reducing the cost of electricity generation. By using benchmark indicators, gains are being sought in plant material condition with corresponding improvements in operating efficiency and capacity factor as well as reductions in Operating and Maintenance (O&M) costs. In designing a process for improvement, Consolidated Edison Company of New York, Inc. (Con Edison) plant managers were asked to review and approve objectives and criteria for Fossil Plant Operations. The program methods included optimizing work processes (including material condition, maintenance programs, work control systems, and personnel performance); team building techniques to foster personnel buy-in of the process; and long term cultural change to insure an ongoing continuous improvement process with measurable results. The program begins with a self assessment of each plant based upon the approved Objectives and Criteria. The Criteria and Review Approaches (CRAs) are established by senior management and the review team. The criteria cover Management, Operations, Maintenance, and Support Functions including Technical Support, Training and Qualification, Environmental Compliance, Chemistry, and Safety and Emergency Preparedness. The Assessment is followed by a review of corrective action plans and an interim corrective action review. Annual Assessments are planned to ensure continuous improvement. Emphasis is placed on progress made in maintenance at the fossil stations.

  9. Plant diversity predicts beta but not alpha diversity of soil microbes across grasslands worldwide

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Prober, Suzanne M.; Leff, Jonathan W.; Bates, Scott T.; Borer, Elizabeth T.; Firn, Jennifer; Harpole, W. Stanley; Lind, Eric M.; Seabloom, Eric W.; Adler, Peter B.; Bakker, Jonathan D.; Cleland, Elsa E.; DeCrappeo, Nicole; DeLorenze, Elizabeth; Hagenah, Nicole; Hautier, Yann; Hofmockel, Kirsten S.; Kirkman, Kevin P.; Knops, Johannes M. H.; La Pierre, Kimberly J.; MacDougall, Andrew S.; McCulley, Rebecca L.; Mitchell, Charles E.; Risch, Anita C.; Schuetz, Martin; Stevens, Carly J.; Williams, Ryan J.; Fierer, Noah

    2015-01-01

    Aboveground–belowground interactions exert critical controls on the composition and function of terrestrial ecosystems, yet the fundamental relationships between plant diversity and soil microbial diversity remain elusive. Theory predicts predominantly positive associations but tests within single sites have shown variable relationships, and associations between plant and microbial diversity across broad spatial scales remain largely unexplored. We compared the diversity of plant, bacterial, archaeal and fungal communities in one hundred and forty-five 1 m2 plots across 25 temperate grassland sites from four continents. Across sites, the plant alpha diversity patterns were poorly related to those observed for any soil microbial group. However, plant beta diversity (compositional dissimilarity between sites) was significantly correlated with the beta diversity of bacterial and fungal communities, even after controlling for environmental factors. Thus, across a global range of temperate grasslands, plant diversity can predict patterns in the composition of soil microbial communities, but not patterns in alpha diversity.

  10. Diverse urban plantings managed with sufficient resource availability can increase plant productivity and arthropod diversity.

    PubMed

    Muller, Jonathon N; Loh, Susan; Braggion, Ligia; Cameron, Stephen; Firn, Jennifer L

    2014-01-01

    Buildings structures and surfaces are explicitly being used to grow plants, and these "urban plantings" are generally designed for aesthetic value. Urban plantings also have the potential to contribute significant "ecological values" by increasing urban habitat for animals such as arthropods and by increasing plant productivity. In this study, we evaluated how the provision of these additional ecological values is affected by plant species richness; the availability of essential resources for plants, such as water, light, space; and soil characteristics. We sampled 33 plantings located on the exterior of three buildings in the urban center of Brisbane, Australia (subtropical climatic region) over 2, 6 week sampling periods characterized by different temperature and rainfall conditions. Plant cover was estimated as a surrogate for productivity as destructive sampling of biomass was not possible. We measured weekly light levels (photosynthetically active radiation), plant CO2 assimilation, soil CO2 efflux, and arthropod diversity. Differences in plant cover were best explained by a three-way interaction of plant species richness, management water regime and sampling period. As the richness of plant species increased in a planter, productivity and total arthropod richness also increased significantly-likely due to greater habitat heterogeneity and quality. Overall we found urban plantings can provide additional ecological values if essential resources are maintained within a planter such as water, light and soil temperature. Diverse urban plantings that are managed with these principles in mind can contribute to the attraction of diverse arthropod communities, and lead to increased plant productivity within a dense urban context. PMID:25400642

  11. Assessing bacterial diversity in a seawater-processing wastewater treatment plant by 454-pyrosequencing of the 16S rRNA and amoA genes

    PubMed Central

    Sánchez, Olga; Ferrera, Isabel; González, Jose M; Mas, Jordi

    2013-01-01

    Summary The bacterial community composition of activated sludge from a wastewater treatment plant (Almería, Spain) with the particularity of using seawater was investigated by applying 454-pyrosequencing. The results showed that Deinococcus-Thermus, Proteobacteria, Chloroflexi and Bacteroidetes were the most abundant retrieved sequences, while other groups, such as Actinobacteria, Chlorobi, Deferribacteres, Firmicutes, Planctomycetes, Spirochaetes and Verrumicrobia were reported at lower proportions. Rarefaction analysis showed that very likely the diversity is higher than what could be described despite most of the unknown microorganisms probably correspond to rare diversity. Furthermore, the majority of taxa could not be classified at the genus level and likely represent novel members of these groups. Additionally, the nitrifiers in the sludge were characterized by pyrosequencing the amoA gene. In contrast, the nitrifying bacterial community, dominated by the genera Nitrosomonas, showed a low diversity and rarefaction curves exhibited saturation. These results suggest that only a few populations of low abundant but specialized bacteria are responsible for removal of ammonia in these saline wastewater systems. PMID:23574645

  12. Straight Talk about Cognitive Assessment and Diversity.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Frisby, Craig L.

    1999-01-01

    Discusses three reasons explaining heightened interest in alternative assessment in the context of diversity issues in school psychology: inadequacy of traditional test use with language populations for whom tests were not designed; the hope that alternative assessment will eliminate, reduce, or camouflage average score differences between…

  13. Phylogenetic Exploration of Medicinal Plant Diversity MedPlant PhD Fellowship

    E-print Network

    Zürich, Universität

    MedPlant Phylogenetic Exploration of Medicinal Plant Diversity MedPlant PhD Fellowship Incense Phylogenetic Exploration of Medicinal Plant Diversity, MedPlant (www.MedPlant.eu). Project description Burning of incense plants for purification and the use of smoke for medicinal purposes are ancient practices in many

  14. Pasture Condition Score Indicators: Controls on Plant and Forage Diversity

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The USDA-NRCS Pasture Condition Score (PCS) system was developed for evaluating pastures and making management recommendations. Four of the ten rating criteria relate to plant species diversity and composition: percent desirable plants, plant cover, plant diversity, and percent legume. Baseline data...

  15. Earthworm and belowground competition effects on plant productivity in a plant diversity gradient

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Nico Eisenhauer; Alexandru Milcu; Norma Nitschke; Alexander C. W. Sabais; Christoph Scherber; Stefan Scheu

    2009-01-01

    Diversity is one major factor driving plant productivity in temperate grasslands. Although decomposers like earthworms are known to affect plant productivity, interacting effects of plant diversity and earthworms on plant productivity have been neglected in field studies. We investigated in the field the effects of earthworms on plant productivity, their interaction with plant species and functional group richness, and their

  16. Soil feedbacks of plant diversity on soil microbial communities and subsequent plant growth

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Janine Bartelt-Ryser; Jasmin Joshi; Bernhard Schmid; Helmut Brandl; Teri Balser

    2005-01-01

    The influence of plant diversity on belowground ecosystem processes and feedbacks of the latter on plant growth are still largely unexplored. A previous field experiment showed positive effects of plant diversity on diversity and activity of culturable soil bacteria. We examined soil carry-over effects of these experimental communities on subsequent plant growth and the development of soil microbial communities in

  17. Environmental correlates of plant diversity in Korean temperate forests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    ?erný, Tomáš; Doležal, Ji?í; Jane?ek, Št?pán; Šr?tek, Miroslav; Valachovi?, Milan; Pet?ík, Petr; Altman, Jan; Bartoš, Michael; Song, Jong-Suk

    2013-02-01

    Mountainous areas of the Korean Peninsula are among the biodiversity hotspots of the world's temperate forests. Understanding patterns in spatial distribution of their species richness requires explicit consideration of different environmental drivers and their effects on functionally differing components. In this study, we assess the impact of both geographical and soil variables on the fine-scale (400 m2) pattern of plant diversity using field data from six national parks, spanning a 1300 m altitudinal gradient. Species richness and the slopes of species-area curves were calculated separately for the tree, shrub and herb layer and used as response variables in regression tree analyses. A cluster analysis distinguished three dominant forest communities with specific patterns in the diversity-environment relationship. The most widespread middle-altitude oak forests had the highest tree richness but the lowest richness of herbaceous plants due to a dense bamboo understory. Total richness was positively associated with soil reaction and negatively associated with soluble phosphorus and solar radiation (site dryness). Tree richness was associated mainly with soil factors, although trees are frequently assumed to be controlled mainly by factors with large-scale impact. A U-shaped relationship was found between herbaceous plant richness and altitude, caused by a distribution pattern of dwarf bamboo in understory. No correlation between the degree of canopy openness and herb layer richness was detected. Slopes of the species-area curves indicated the various origins of forest communities. Variable diversity-environment responses in different layers and communities reinforce the necessity of context-dependent differentiation for the assessment of impacts of climate and land-use changes in these diverse but intensively exploited regions.

  18. Functional diversity of plant-pollinator interaction webs enhances the persistence of plant communities.

    PubMed

    Fontaine, Colin; Dajoz, Isabelle; Meriguet, Jacques; Loreau, Michel

    2006-01-01

    Pollination is exclusively or mainly animal mediated for 70% to 90% of angiosperm species. Thus, pollinators provide an essential ecosystem service to humankind. However, the impact of human-induced biodiversity loss on the functioning of plant-pollinator interactions has not been tested experimentally. To understand how plant communities respond to diversity changes in their pollinating fauna, we manipulated the functional diversity of both plants and pollinators under natural conditions. Increasing the functional diversity of both plants and pollinators led to the recruitment of more diverse plant communities. After two years the plant communities pollinated by the most functionally diverse pollinator assemblage contained about 50% more plant species than did plant communities pollinated by less-diverse pollinator assemblages. Moreover, the positive effect of functional diversity was explained by a complementarity between functional groups of pollinators and plants. Thus, the functional diversity of pollination networks may be critical to ecosystem sustainability. PMID:16332160

  19. PLANT DIVERSITY OF WESTERN CHITWAN FLORISTIC APPROACH

    PubMed Central

    Dangol, D. R.; Shivakoti, G. P.

    2012-01-01

    This paper identifies and documents the plant biodiversity of western Chitwan, Nepal. Specifically, our attention was focussed on the plants of forests, grasslands and common lands based on our “Reciprocal Relation of Population and Environment Study Project” conducted during January-April 1996. This species-diversity of trees, shrubs and herbaceous flora was recorded from 117, 117, and 1049 sampling quadrats of 10×10, 3×3 and 1×1 m2, respectively. The flora of our study plots contains 236 species that belong to 191 genera and 66 families. Of 236 species of plants, 119, 113, 59, 35 and 119 species were recorded from Tikauli forest, National Park forest, forests along the Narayani river, grasslands of National Park and common lands of the western Chitwan, respectively. Dicotyledons represent 184 (77.97%) species of the total flora species followed by monocotyledons (46 spp., 19.49%) and ferns (6 spp., 2.54%), respectively. The five largest families are Leguminosae (38 spp.), Poaceae (27 spp.), Asteraceae (22 spp.), Rubiaceae (10 spp.), and Scrophulariaceae (9 spp.). Hedyotis, Grewia and Lindernia, each with 4 spp., are the most speciose genera in the flora. PMID:22899874

  20. ORIGINAL PAPER Plant genotypic diversity and environmental stress interact

    E-print Network

    Pfrender, Michael

    (Populus tremuloides Michx.). We found that varying plant geno- typic diversity and watering treatment Populus tremuloides Introduction With growing concerns about species extinctions, many researchers have

  1. Pathogens promote plant diversity through a compensatory response

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Devon J. Bradley; Gregory S. Gilbert; Jennifer B. H. Martiny

    2008-01-01

    Pathogens are thought to promote diversity in plant communities by preventing competitive exclusion. Previous studies have focussed primarily on single-plant, single- pathogen interactions, yet the interactions between multiple pathogens and multiple hosts may have non-additive impacts on plant community composition. Here, we report that both a bacterial and a fungal pathogen maintained the diversity of a four-species plant community across

  2. MSU Departmental Assessment Plan Department: Plant Sciences and Plant Pathology

    E-print Network

    Maxwell, Bruce D.

    MSU Departmental Assessment Plan 2009-2010 Department: Plant Sciences and Plant Pathology Production option #12;Department of Plant Sciences and Plant Pathology Assessment and Outcomes Progress 2010 The Department of Plant Sciences and Plant Pathology (PSPP) has assessment plans for each major/option offered

  3. Plant species richness drives the density and diversity of Collembola in temperate grassland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sabais, Alexander C. W.; Scheu, Stefan; Eisenhauer, Nico

    2011-05-01

    Declining biodiversity is one of the most important aspects of anthropogenic global change phenomena, but the implications of plant species loss for soil decomposers are little understood. We used the experimental grassland community of the Jena Experiment to assess the response of density and diversity of Collembola to varying plant species richness, plant functional group richness and plant functional group identity. We sampled the experimental plots in spring and autumn four years after establishment of the experimental plant communities. Collembola density and diversity significantly increased with plant species and plant functional group richness highlighting the importance of the singular hypothesis for soil invertebrates. Generally, grasses and legumes beneficially affected Collembola density and diversity, whereas effects of small herbs usually were detrimental. These impacts were largely consistent in spring and autumn. By contrast, in the presence of small herbs the density of hemiedaphic Collembola and the diversity of Isotomidae increased in spring whereas they decreased in autumn. Beneficial impacts of plant diversity as well as those of grasses and legumes were likely due to increased root and microbial biomass, and elevated quantity and quality of plant residues serving as food resources for Collembola. By contrast, beneficial impacts of small herbs in spring probably reflect differences in microclimatic conditions, and detrimental effects in autumn likely were due to low quantity and quality of resources. The results point to an intimate relationship between plants and the diversity of belowground biota, even at small spatial scales, contrasting the findings of previous studies. The pronounced response of soil animals in the present study was presumably due to the fact that plant communities had established over several years. As decomposer invertebrates significantly impact plant performance, changes in soil biota density and diversity are likely to have major feedbacks on plant community productivity and composition.

  4. Assessment of genetic diversity and relationships among caladium cultivars and species using molecular markers

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Caladium (Caladium hortulanum Birdsey) is an important aroid widely used in the ornamental plant industry. Concerns have been raised about possible loss of genetic diversity due to a drastic decline in the number of cultivars in the last century. This study assessed genetic diversity and relationshi...

  5. Power Plant Water Intake Assessment.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zeitoun, Ibrahim H.; And Others

    1980-01-01

    In order to adequately assess the impact of power plant cooling water intake on an aquatic ecosystem, total ecosystem effects must be considered, rather than merely numbers of impinged or entrained organisms. (Author/RE)

  6. Assessment of Genetic Diversity of Sweet Potato in Puerto Rico

    PubMed Central

    Rodriguez-Bonilla, Lorraine; Cuevas, Hugo E.; Montero-Rojas, Milly; Bird-Pico, Fernando; Luciano-Rosario, Dianiris; Siritunga, Dimuth

    2014-01-01

    Sweet potato (Ipomoea batatas L.) is the seventh most important food crop due to its distinct advantages, such as adaptability to different environmental conditions and high nutritional value. Assessing the genetic diversity of this important crop is necessary due to the constant increase of demand for food and the need for conservation of agricultural and genetic resources. In Puerto Rico (PR), the genetic diversity of sweet potato has been poorly understood, although it has been part of the diet since Pre-Columbus time. Thus, 137 landraces from different localities around PR were collected and subjected to a genetic diversity analysis using 23 SSR-markers. In addition, 8 accessions from a collection grown in Gurabo, PR at the Agricultural Experimental Station (GAES), 10 US commercial cultivars and 12 Puerto Rican accessions from the USDA repository collection were included in this assessment. The results of the analysis of the 23 loci showed 255 alleles in the 167 samples. Observed heterozygosity was high across populations (0.71) while measurements of total heterozygosity revealed a large genetic diversity throughout the population and within populations. UPGMA clustering method revealed two main clusters. Cluster 1 contained 12 PR accessions from the USDA repository collection, while cluster 2 consisted of PR landraces, US commercial cultivars and the PR accessions from GAES. Population structure analysis grouped PR landraces in five groups including four US commercial cultivars. Our study shows the presence of a high level of genetic diversity of sweet potato across PR which can be related to the genetic makeup of sweet potato, human intervention and out-crossing nature of the plant. The history of domestication and dispersal of sweet potato in the Caribbean and the high levels of genetic diversity found through this study makes sweet potato an invaluable resource that needs to be protected and further studied. PMID:25551388

  7. Positive interactions between herbivores and plant diversity shape forest regeneration

    PubMed Central

    Cook-Patton, Susan C.; LaForgia, Marina; Parker, John D.

    2014-01-01

    The effects of herbivores and diversity on plant communities have been studied separately but rarely in combination. We conducted two concurrent experiments over 3 years to examine how tree seedling diversity, density and herbivory affected forest regeneration. One experiment factorially manipulated plant diversity (one versus 15 species) and the presence/absence of deer (Odocoileus virginianus). We found that mixtures outperformed monocultures only in the presence of deer. Selective browsing on competitive dominants and associational protection from less palatable species appear responsible for this herbivore-driven diversity effect. The other experiment manipulated monospecific plant density and found little evidence for negative density dependence. Combined, these experiments suggest that the higher performance in mixture was owing to the acquisition of positive interspecific interactions rather than the loss of negative intraspecific interactions. Overall, we emphasize that realistic predictions about the consequences of changing biodiversity will require a deeper understanding of the interaction between plant diversity and higher trophic levels. If we had manipulated only plant diversity, we would have missed an important positive interaction across trophic levels: diverse seedling communities better resist herbivores, and herbivores help to maintain seedling diversity. PMID:24718763

  8. Plant-Pollinator Coextinctions and the Loss of Plant Functional and Phylogenetic Diversity

    PubMed Central

    Vieira, Marcos Costa; Cianciaruso, Marcus Vinicius; Almeida-Neto, Mário

    2013-01-01

    Plant-pollinator coextinctions are likely to become more frequent as habitat alteration and climate change continue to threaten pollinators. The consequences of the resulting collapse of plant communities will depend partly on how quickly plant functional and phylogenetic diversity decline following pollinator extinctions. We investigated the functional and phylogenetic consequences of pollinator extinctions by simulating coextinctions in seven plant-pollinator networks coupled with independent data on plant phylogeny and functional traits. Declines in plant functional diversity were slower than expected under a scenario of random extinctions, while phylogenetic diversity often decreased faster than expected by chance. Our results show that plant functional diversity was relatively robust to plant-pollinator coextinctions, despite the underlying rapid loss of evolutionary history. Thus, our study suggests the possibility of uncoupled responses of functional and phylogenetic diversity to species coextinctions, highlighting the importance of considering both dimensions of biodiversity explicitly in ecological studies and when planning for the conservation of species and interactions. PMID:24312281

  9. Climate-driven diversity dynamics in plants and plant-feeding Tommi Nyman,1,2*

    E-print Network

    Wahlberg, Niklas

    . The dramatic Cenozoic changes in global climate provide multiple possibilities for studying the mechanismsREVIEW AND SYNTHESES Climate-driven diversity dynamics in plants and plant-feeding insects Tommi climate determines the distribution, abundance and diversity of plant clades and, hence, indirectly

  10. Endophytic actinobacteria of medicinal plants: diversity and bioactivity.

    PubMed

    Golinska, Patrycja; Wypij, Magdalena; Agarkar, Gauravi; Rathod, Dnyaneshwar; Dahm, Hanna; Rai, Mahendra

    2015-08-01

    Endophytes are the microorganisms that exist inside the plant tissues without having any negative impact on the host plant. Medicinal plants constitute the huge diversity of endophytic actinobacteria of economical importance. These microbes have huge potential to synthesis of numerous novel compounds that can be exploited in pharmaceutical, agricultural and other industries. It is of prime importance to focus the present research on practical utilization of this microbial group in order to find out the solutions to the problems related to health, environment and agriculture. An extensive characterization of diverse population of endophytic actinobacteria associated with medicinal plants can provide a greater insight into the plant-endophyte interactions and evolution of mutualism. In the present review, we have discussed the diversity of endophytic actinobacteria of from medicinal plants their multiple bioactivities. PMID:26093915

  11. Soil microbes drive the classic plant diversity­ productivity pattern

    E-print Network

    Schnitzer, Stefan A.; Klironomos, John N.; HilleRisLambers, Jannek; Kinkel, Linda L.; Reich, Peter B.; Xiao, Kun; Rillig, Matthias C.; Sikes, Benjamin A.; Callaway, Ragan M.; Mangan, Scott A.; van Nes, Egbert H.; Scheffer, Marten

    2011-02-01

    Ecosystem productivity commonly increases asymptotically with plant species diversity, and determining the mechanisms responsible for this well-known pattern is essential to predict potential changes in ecosystem productivity ...

  12. Detection and diversity assessment of Xylella fastidiosa in field-collected plant and insect samples by using 16S rRNA and gyrB sequences.

    PubMed

    Rodrigues, Jorge L M; Silva-Stenico, M E; Gomes, J E; Lopes, J R S; Tsai, S M

    2003-07-01

    The causal agent of diseases in many economically important plants is attributed to the xylem-limited bacterium Xylella fastidiosa. The detection of this plant pathogen has been hampered due to its difficult isolation and slow growth on plates. Nearly complete nucleotide sequences of the 16S rRNA gene and partial sequences of the gyrB gene were determined for 18 strains of X. fastidiosa isolated from different plant hosts. A phylogenetic analysis, based on gyrB, grouped strains in three clusters; grape-isolated strains formed one cluster, citrus-coffee strains formed another cluster, and a third cluster resulted from all other strains. Primer pairs designed for the 16S rRNA and gyrB genes were extensively searched in databases to verify their in silico specificity. Primer pairs were certified with 30 target and 36 nontarget pure cultures of microorganisms, confirming 100% specificity. A multiplex PCR protocol was developed and its sensitivity tested. Sequencing of PCR products confirmed the validity of the multiplex PCR. Xylella fastidiosa was detected in field-collected plants, disease vector insects, and nonsymptomatic but infected plants. Specific detection of X. fastidiosa may facilitate the understanding of its ecological significance and prevention of spread of the disease. PMID:12839807

  13. Plant genotypic diversity reduces the rate of consumer resource utilization

    PubMed Central

    McArt, Scott H.; Thaler, Jennifer S.

    2013-01-01

    While plant species diversity can reduce herbivore densities and herbivory, little is known regarding how plant genotypic diversity alters resource utilization by herbivores. Here, we show that an invasive folivore—the Japanese beetle (Popillia japonica)—increases 28 per cent in abundance, but consumes 24 per cent less foliage in genotypic polycultures compared with monocultures of the common evening primrose (Oenothera biennis). We found strong complementarity for reduced herbivore damage among plant genotypes growing in polycultures and a weak dominance effect of particularly resistant genotypes. Sequential feeding by P. japonica on different genotypes from polycultures resulted in reduced consumption compared with feeding on different plants of the same genotype from monocultures. Thus, diet mixing among plant genotypes reduced herbivore consumption efficiency. Despite positive complementarity driving an increase in fruit production in polycultures, we observed a trade-off between complementarity for increased plant productivity and resistance to herbivory, suggesting costs in the complementary use of resources by plant genotypes may manifest across trophic levels. These results elucidate mechanisms for how plant genotypic diversity simultaneously alters resource utilization by both producers and consumers, and show that population genotypic diversity can increase the resistance of a native plant to an invasive herbivore. PMID:23658201

  14. Severe plant invasions can increase mycorrhizal fungal abundance and diversity.

    PubMed

    Lekberg, Ylva; Gibbons, Sean M; Rosendahl, Søren; Ramsey, Philip W

    2013-07-01

    Invasions by non-native plants can alter ecosystem functions and reduce native plant diversity, but relatively little is known about their effect on belowground microbial communities. We show that invasions by knapweed (Centaurea stoebe) and leafy spurge (Euphorbia esula, hereafter spurge)--but not cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum)--support a higher abundance and diversity of symbiotic arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) than multi-species native plant communities. The higher AMF richness associated with knapweed and spurge is unlikely due to a co-invasion by AMF, because a separate sampling showed that individual native forbs hosted a similar AMF abundance and richness as exotic forbs. Native grasses associated with fewer AMF taxa, which could explain the reduced AMF richness in native, grass-dominated communities. The three invasive plant species harbored distinct AMF communities, and analyses of co-occurring native and invasive plants indicate that differences were partly driven by the invasive plants and were not the result of pre-invasion conditions. Our results suggest that invasions by mycotrophic plants that replace poorer hosts can increase AMF abundance and richness. The high AMF richness in monodominant plant invasions also indicates that the proposed positive relationship between above and belowground diversity is not always strong. Finally, the disparate responses among exotic plants and consistent results between grasses and forbs suggest that AMF respond more to plant functional group than plant provenance. PMID:23486251

  15. Severe plant invasions can increase mycorrhizal fungal abundance and diversity

    PubMed Central

    Lekberg, Ylva; Gibbons, Sean M; Rosendahl, Søren; Ramsey, Philip W

    2013-01-01

    Invasions by non-native plants can alter ecosystem functions and reduce native plant diversity, but relatively little is known about their effect on belowground microbial communities. We show that invasions by knapweed (Centaurea stoebe) and leafy spurge (Euphorbia esula, hereafter spurge)—but not cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum)—support a higher abundance and diversity of symbiotic arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) than multi-species native plant communities. The higher AMF richness associated with knapweed and spurge is unlikely due to a co-invasion by AMF, because a separate sampling showed that individual native forbs hosted a similar AMF abundance and richness as exotic forbs. Native grasses associated with fewer AMF taxa, which could explain the reduced AMF richness in native, grass-dominated communities. The three invasive plant species harbored distinct AMF communities, and analyses of co-occurring native and invasive plants indicate that differences were partly driven by the invasive plants and were not the result of pre-invasion conditions. Our results suggest that invasions by mycotrophic plants that replace poorer hosts can increase AMF abundance and richness. The high AMF richness in monodominant plant invasions also indicates that the proposed positive relationship between above and belowground diversity is not always strong. Finally, the disparate responses among exotic plants and consistent results between grasses and forbs suggest that AMF respond more to plant functional group than plant provenance. PMID:23486251

  16. Invasion of an intact plant community: the role of population versus community level diversity.

    PubMed

    Chang, Cynthia C; Smith, Melinda D

    2012-04-01

    To improve the understanding of how native plant diversity influences invasion, we examined how population and community diversity may directly and indirectly be related to invasion in a natural field setting. Due to the large impact of the dominant C(4) grass species (Andropogon gerardii) on invasion resistance of tallgrass prairie, we hypothesized that genetic diversity and associated traits within a population of this species would be more strongly related to invasion than diversity or traits of the rest of the community. We added seeds of the exotic invasive C(4) grass, A. bladhii, to 1-m(2) plots in intact tallgrass prairie that varied in genetic diversity of A. gerardii and plant community diversity, but not species richness. We assessed relationships among genetic diversity and traits of A. gerardii, community diversity, community aggregated traits, resource availability, and early season establishment and late-season persistence of the invader using structural equation modeling (SEM). SEM models suggested that community diversity likely enhanced invasion indirectly through increasing community aggregated specific leaf area as a consequence of more favorable microclimatic conditions for seedling establishment. In contrast, neither population nor community diversity was directly or indirectly related to late season survival of invasive seedlings. Our research suggests that while much of diversity-invasion research has separately focused on the direct effects of genetic and species diversity, when taken together, we find that the role of both levels of diversity on invasion resistance may be more complex, whereby effects of diversity may be primarily indirect via traits and vary depending on the stage of invasion. PMID:22015570

  17. IS PLANT SPECIES DIVERSITY WORTH MANAGING IN GRAZING LANDS?

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The purpose of this symposium is to present the latest concepts in plant biodiversity in grazing land ecosystems and discuss their potential application to management of forage and grazing lands. The symposium begins with an overview of plant diversity in grassland ecosystems, then addresses topics ...

  18. Macroevolution and the biological diversity of plants and herbivores

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Douglas J. Futuyma; Anurag A. Agrawal

    2009-01-01

    Terrestrial biodiversity is dominated by plants and the herbivores that consume them, and they are one of the major conduits of en- ergy flow up to higher trophic levels. Here, we address the processes that have generated the spectacular diversity of flowering plants (>300,000 species) and insect herbivores (likely >1 million species). Long-standing macroevolutionary hypotheses have postu- lated that reciprocal

  19. Plant diversity in riparian forests in northwest Colorado: Effects of time and river regulation

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Amanda L. Uowolo; Dan Binkley; E. Carol Adair

    2005-01-01

    During the 20th Century the flow of most rivers in the United States was regulated by diversions and dams, with major impacts on riparian forests. Few unregulated rivers remain to provide baseline information for assessing these impacts. We characterized patterns in riparian plant communities along chronosequences on the unregulated Yampa River and the regulated Green River in northwestern Colorado, examining

  20. Assessing the Complexity of Diversity Perceptions: Breadth, Depth, and Balance

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Todd J. Hostager; Kenneth P. De Meuse

    2002-01-01

    Despite the wealth of prescriptive information on how to manage diversity, relatively little attention has been paid to measures of workplace diversity. The present study developed a set of measures that practitioners and researchers can use to assess the degree to which members of an organization hold simple or complex views on workplace diversity. Three measures of perceptual complexity were

  1. Functional Diversity of Plant–Pollinator Interaction Webs Enhances the Persistence of Plant Communities

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Colin Fontaine; Isabelle Dajoz; Jacques Meriguet; Michel Loreau

    2006-01-01

    Pollination is exclusively or mainly animal mediated for 70% to 90% of angiosperm species. Thus, pollinators provide an essential ecosystem service to humankind. However, the impact of human-induced biodiversity loss on the functioning of plant–pollinator interactions has not been tested experimentally. To understand how plant communities respond to diversity changes in their pollinating fauna, we manipulated the functional diversity of

  2. Plant genotypic diversity increases population size of a herbivorous insect

    PubMed Central

    Utsumi, Shunsuke; Ando, Yoshino; Craig, Timothy P.; Ohgushi, Takayuki

    2011-01-01

    It is critical to incorporate the process of population dynamics into community genetics studies to identify the mechanisms of the linkage between host plant genetics and associated communities. We studied the effects of plant genotypic diversity of tall goldenrod Solidago altissima on the population dynamics of the aphid Uroleucon nigrotuberculatum. We found genotypic variation in plant resistance to the aphid in our experiments. To determine the impact of plant genotypic diversity on aphid population dynamics, we compared aphid densities under conditions of three treatments: single-genotype plots, mixed-genotype plots and mixed-genotype-with-cages plots. In the latter treatment plants were individually caged to prevent natural enemy attack and aphid movement among plants. The synergistic effects of genotypes on population size were demonstrated by the greater aphid population size in the mixed-genotype treatment than expected from additive effects alone. Two non-exclusive hypotheses are proposed to explain this pattern. First, there is a source–sink relationship among plant genotypes: aphids move from plant genotypes where their reproduction is high to genotypes where their reproduction is low. Second, natural enemy mortality is reduced in mixed plots in a matrix of diverse plant genotypes. PMID:21378084

  3. Plant genotypic diversity increases population size of a herbivorous insect.

    PubMed

    Utsumi, Shunsuke; Ando, Yoshino; Craig, Timothy P; Ohgushi, Takayuki

    2011-10-22

    It is critical to incorporate the process of population dynamics into community genetics studies to identify the mechanisms of the linkage between host plant genetics and associated communities. We studied the effects of plant genotypic diversity of tall goldenrod Solidago altissima on the population dynamics of the aphid Uroleucon nigrotuberculatum. We found genotypic variation in plant resistance to the aphid in our experiments. To determine the impact of plant genotypic diversity on aphid population dynamics, we compared aphid densities under conditions of three treatments: single-genotype plots, mixed-genotype plots and mixed-genotype-with-cages plots. In the latter treatment plants were individually caged to prevent natural enemy attack and aphid movement among plants. The synergistic effects of genotypes on population size were demonstrated by the greater aphid population size in the mixed-genotype treatment than expected from additive effects alone. Two non-exclusive hypotheses are proposed to explain this pattern. First, there is a source-sink relationship among plant genotypes: aphids move from plant genotypes where their reproduction is high to genotypes where their reproduction is low. Second, natural enemy mortality is reduced in mixed plots in a matrix of diverse plant genotypes. PMID:21378084

  4. Plant diversity affects behavior of generalist root herbivores, reduces crop damage, and enhances crop yield.

    PubMed

    Staudacher, Karin; Schallhart, Nikolaus; Thalinger, Bettina; Wallinger, Corinna; Juen, Anita; Traugott, Michael

    2013-07-01

    Soil-dwelling pests inflict considerable economic damage in agriculture but are hard to control. A promising strategy to reduce pest pressure on crops is to increase the plant diversity in agroecosystems. This approach, however, demands a sound understanding of species' interactions, which is widely lacking for subterranean herbivore-plant systems. Here, we examine the effects of plant diversification on wireworms, the soil-dwelling larvae of click beetles that threaten crops worldwide. We conducted a field experiment employing plant diversification by adding either wheat or a mix of six associated plants (grasses, legumes, and forbs) between rows of maize to protect it from Agriotes wireworms. Wireworm feeding behavior, dispersal between crop and associated plants, as well as maize damage and yield were examined. The former was assessed combining molecular gut content and stable isotope analysis. The pests were strongly attracted by the associated plants in August, when the crop was most vulnerable, whereas in September, shortly before harvest, this effect occurred only in the plant mix. In maize monoculture, the larvae stayed in the principal crop throughout the season. Larval delta13C signatures revealed that maize feeding was reduced up to sevenfold in wireworms of the vegetationally diversified treatments compared to those of the maize monoculture. These findings were confirmed by molecular analysis, which additionally showed a dietary preference of wireworms for specific plants in the associated plant mix. Compared to the monoculture, maize damage was reduced by 38% and 55% in the wheat and plant mix treatment, which translated into a yield increase of 30% and 38%, respectively. The present findings demonstrate that increasing the plant diversity in agroecosystems provides an effective insurance against soil pests. The underlying mechanisms are the diversion of the pest from the principle crop and a changed feeding behavior. The deployment of diverse mixes of associated plants, tailored to the specific preferences of the soil herbivores, provides a promising strategy for managing subterranean pests while maintaining crop yield. PMID:23967581

  5. Assessment of molecular diversity and population structure of the Ethiopian sorghum [Sorghum bicolor L. (Moench)] germplasm collection maintained by the USDA-ARS National Plant Germplasm System using SSR markers

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The genetic diversity and population structure present in the Ethiopian sorghum collection maintained at the USDA-ARS National Plant Germplasm System (NPGS) has not been studied. In addition, 83% of the accessions in the Ethiopian collection lack passport information which has constrained their eval...

  6. Earthworm and belowground competition effects on plant productivity in a plant diversity gradient.

    PubMed

    Eisenhauer, Nico; Milcu, Alexandru; Nitschke, Norma; Sabais, Alexander C W; Scherber, Christoph; Scheu, Stefan

    2009-08-01

    Diversity is one major factor driving plant productivity in temperate grasslands. Although decomposers like earthworms are known to affect plant productivity, interacting effects of plant diversity and earthworms on plant productivity have been neglected in field studies. We investigated in the field the effects of earthworms on plant productivity, their interaction with plant species and functional group richness, and their effects on belowground plant competition. In the framework of the Jena Experiment we determined plant community productivity (in 2004 and 2007) and performance of two phytometer plant species [Centaurea jacea (herb) and Lolium perenne (grass); in 2007 and 2008] in a plant species (from one to 16) and functional group richness gradient (from one to four). We sampled earthworm subplots and subplots with decreased earthworm density and reduced aboveground competition of phytometer plants by removing the shoot biomass of the resident plant community. Earthworms increased total plant community productivity (+11%), legume shoot biomass (+35%) and shoot biomass of the phytometer C. jacea (+21%). Further, phytometer performance decreased, i.e. belowground competition increased, with increasing plant species and functional group richness. Although single plant functional groups benefited from higher earthworm numbers, the effects did not vary with plant species and functional group richness. The present study indicates that earthworms indeed affect the productivity of semi-natural grasslands irrespective of the diversity of the plant community. Belowground competition increased with increasing plant species diversity. However, belowground competition was modified by earthworms as reflected by increased productivity of the phytometer C. jacea. Moreover, particularly legumes benefited from earthworm presence. Considering also previous studies, we suggest that earthworms and legumes form a loose mutualistic relationship affecting essential ecosystem functions in temperate grasslands, in particular decomposition and plant productivity. Further, earthworms likely alter competitive interactions among plants and the structure of plant communities by beneficially affecting certain plant functional groups. PMID:19526252

  7. Modeling Forest Structure and Vascular Plant Diversity in Piedmont Forests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hakkenberg, C.

    2014-12-01

    When the interacting stressors of climate change and land cover/land use change (LCLUC) overwhelm ecosystem resilience to environmental and climatic variability, forest ecosystems are at increased risk of regime shifts and hyperdynamism in process rates. To meet the growing range of novel biotic and environmental stressors on human-impacted ecosystems, the maintenance of taxonomic diversity and functional redundancy in metacommunities has been proposed as a risk spreading measure ensuring that species critical to landscape ecosystem functioning are available for recruitment as local systems respond to novel conditions. This research is the first in a multi-part study to establish a dynamic, predictive model of the spatio-temporal dynamics of vascular plant diversity in North Carolina Piedmont mixed forests using remotely sensed data inputs. While remote sensing technologies are optimally suited to monitor LCLUC over large areas, direct approaches to the remote measurement of plant diversity remain a challenge. This study tests the efficacy of predicting indices of vascular plant diversity using remotely derived measures of forest structural heterogeneity from aerial LiDAR and high spatial resolution broadband optical imagery in addition to derived topo-environmental variables. Diversity distribution modelling of this sort is predicated upon the idea that environmental filtering of dispersing species help define fine-scale (permeable) environmental envelopes within which biotic structural and compositional factors drive competitive interactions that, in addition to background stochasticity, determine fine-scale alpha diversity. Results reveal that over a range of Piedmont forest communities, increasing structural complexity is positively correlated with measures of plant diversity, though the nature of this relationship varies by environmental conditions and community type. The diversity distribution model is parameterized and cross-validated using three high quality vegetation survey datasets, including Duke Forest Korstian permanent plots, Forest Inventory Analysis (FIA), and the scale transgressive, nested module Carolina Vegetation Survey (CVS).

  8. Herbivores and nutrients control grassland plant diversity via light limitation

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Borer, Elizabeth T.; Seabloom, Eric W.; Gruner, Daniel S.; Harpole, W. Stanley; Hillebrand, Helmut; Lind, Eric M.; Alder, Peter B.; Alberti, Juan; Anderson, T. Michael; Bakker, Jonathan D.; Biederman, Lori; Blumenthal, Dana; Brown, Cynthia S.; Brudvig, Lars A.; Buckley, Yvonne M.; Cadotte, Marc; Chu, Cheng-Jin; Cleland, Elsa E.; Crawley, Michael J.; Daleo, Pedro; Damschen, Ellen I.; Davies, Kendi F.; DeCrappeo, Nicole M.; Du, Guozhen; Firn, Jennifer; Hautier, Yann; Heckman, Robert W.; Hector, Andy; HilleRisLambers, Janneke; Iribarne, Oscar; Klein, Julia A.; Knops, Johannes M.H.; La Pierre, Kimberly J.; Leakey, Andrew D.B.; Li, Wei; MacDougall, Andrew S.; McCulley, Rebecca L.; Melbourne, Brett A.; Mitchell, Charles E.; Moore, Joslin L.; Mortensen, Brent; O'Halloran, Lydia R.; Orrock, John L.; Pascual, Jesús; Prober, Suzanne M.; Pyke, David A.; Risch, Anita C.; Schuetz, Martin; Smith, Melinda D.; Stevens, Carly J.; Sullivan, Lauren L.; Williams, Ryan J.; Wragg, Peter D.; Wright, Justin P.; Yang, Louie H.

    2014-01-01

    Human alterations to nutrient cycles and herbivore communities are affecting global biodiversity dramatically. Ecological theory predicts these changes should be strongly counteractive: nutrient addition drives plant species loss through intensified competition for light, whereas herbivores prevent competitive exclusion by increasing ground-level light, particularly in productive systems. Here we use experimental data spanning a globally relevant range of conditions to test the hypothesis that herbaceous plant species losses caused by eutrophication may be offset by increased light availability due to herbivory. This experiment, replicated in 40 grasslands on 6 continents, demonstrates that nutrients and herbivores can serve as counteracting forces to control local plant diversity through light limitation, independent of site productivity, soil nitrogen, herbivore type and climate. Nutrient addition consistently reduced local diversity through light limitation, and herbivory rescued diversity at sites where it alleviated light limitation. Thus, species loss from anthropogenic eutrophication can be ameliorated in grasslands where herbivory increases ground-level light.

  9. Genotypic and phenotypic diversity in populations of plant-probiotic Pseudomonas spp. colonizing roots

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Picard, Christine; Bosco, Marco

    2008-01-01

    Several soil microorganisms colonizing roots are known to naturally promote the health of plants by controlling a range of plant pathogens, including bacteria, fungi, and nematodes. The use of theses antagonistic microorganisms, recently named plant-probiotics, to control plant-pathogenic fungi is receiving increasing attention, as they may represent a sustainable alternative to chemical pesticides. Many years of research on plant-probiotic microorganisms (PPM) have indicated that fluorescent pseudomonads producing antimicrobial compounds are largely involved in the suppression of the most widespread soilborne pathogens. Phenotype and genotype analysis of plant-probiotic fluorescent pseudomonads (PFP) have shown considerable genetic variation among these types of strains. Such variability plays an important role in the rhizosphere competence and the biocontrol ability of PFP strains. Understanding the mechanisms by which genotypic and phenotypic diversity occurs in natural populations of PFP could be exploited to choose those agricultural practices which best exploit the indigenous PFP populations, or to isolate new plant-probiotic strains for using them as inoculants. A number of different methods have been used to study diversity within PFP populations. Because different resolutions of the existing microbial diversity can be revealed depending on the approach used, this review first describes the most important methods used for the assessment of fluorescent Pseudomonas diversity. Then, we focus on recent data relating how differences in genotypic and phenotypic diversity within PFP communities can be attributed to geographic location, climate, soil type, soil management regime, and interactions with other soil microorganisms and host plants. It becomes evident that plant-related parameters exert the strongest influence on the genotypic and phenotypic variations in PFP populations.

  10. Exotic Plant Species Invade Hot Spots of Native Plant Diversity

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Thomas J. Stohlgren; Dan Binkley; Geneva W. Chong; Mohammed A. Kalkhan; Lisa D. Schell; Kelly A. Bull; Yuka Otsuki; Gregory Newman; Michael Bashkin; Yowhan Son

    1999-01-01

    Some theories and experimental studies suggest that areas of low plant spe- cies richness may be invaded more easily than areas of high plant species richness. We gathered nested-scale vegetation data on plant species richness, foliar cover, and frequency from 200 1-m2 subplots (20 1000-m2 modified-Whittaker plots) in the Colorado Rockies (USA), and 160 1-m2 subplots (16 1000-m2 plots) in

  11. Diversity Strategies for Nuclear Power Plant Instrumentation and Control Systems

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Richard Thomas Wood; Randy Belles; Mustafa Sacit Cetiner; David Eugene Holcomb; Kofi Korsah; Andy Loebl; Gary T Mays; Michael David Muhlheim; James Allen Mullens; Willis P Poore; A L Qualls; Thomas L Wilson; Michael E. Waterman

    2010-01-01

    This report presents the technical basis for establishing acceptable mitigating strategies that resolve diversity and defense-in-depth (D3) assessment findings and conform to U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) requirements. The research approach employed to establish appropriate diversity strategies involves investigation of available documentation on D3 methods and experience from nuclear power and nonnuclear industries, capture of expert knowledge and lessons learned,

  12. ORIGINAL PAPER Dry grassland plant diversity conservation using

    E-print Network

    Janouskova, Martina

    ORIGINAL PAPER Dry grassland plant diversity conservation using low-intensity sheep and goat+Business Media B.V. 2008 Abstract After abandonment, dry grassland (Festuco-Brometea) areas decline due to gradual overgrowing by woody species and the expansion of perennial tall grass species. Dry grassland

  13. PLANT DIVERSITY OF THE CAPE REGION OF SOUTHERN AFRICA

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Peter Goldblatt; John C. Manning

    ABSTRACT Comprising a land area of ca. 90,000 km,, less than one twentieth (5%) the land area of the southern African subcontinent, the Cape Floristic Region (CFR) is, for its size, one of the world’s richest areas of plant species diversity. A new synoptic flora for the Region has made possible an accurate reassessment of the flora, which has an

  14. Assessment of Genetic Diversity of Pawpaw (Asimina triloba) Cultivars with Intersimple Sequence Repeat Markers

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Kirk W. Pomper; Sheri B. Crabtree; Shawn P. Brown; Snake C. Jones; Tera M. Bonney; Desmond R. Layne

    2003-01-01

    The pawpaw (Asimina triloba (L.) Dunal.) is a tree fruit native to many areas of the southeastern and mid- western United States. Kentucky State University (KSU) is designated as a satellite repository for Asimina for the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), National Plant Germplasm System (NPGS). An assessment of the level of genetic diversity in cultivated pawpaw would assist in

  15. Plant diversity in managed sal ( Shorea robusta Gaertn.) forests of Gorakhpur, India: species composition, regeneration and conservation

    Microsoft Academic Search

    S. K. Pandey; R. P. Shukla

    2003-01-01

    The sal (Shorea robusta) forest vegetation of Sohagibarawa Wildlife Sanctuary, Gorakhpur, India was analysed to assess plant diversity, regeneration pattern and the status of species conservation. A total of 208 plant species representing 165 genera and 72 families were recorded. Species richness, mean density and basal area of individuals in the observed forest were compared with those of other sal-dominated

  16. Arctic plant diversity in the Early Eocene greenhouse

    PubMed Central

    Harrington, Guy J.; Eberle, Jaelyn; Le-Page, Ben A.; Dawson, Mary; Hutchison, J. Howard

    2012-01-01

    For the majority of the Early Caenozoic, a remarkable expanse of humid, mesothermal to temperate forests spread across Northern Polar regions that now contain specialized plant and animal communities adapted to life in extreme environments. Little is known on the taxonomic diversity of Arctic floras during greenhouse periods of the Caenozoic. We show for the first time that plant richness in the globally warm Early Eocene (approx. 55–52 Myr) in the Canadian High Arctic (76° N) is comparable with that approximately 3500 km further south at mid-latitudes in the US western interior (44–47° N). Arctic Eocene pollen floras are most comparable in richness with today's forests in the southeastern United States, some 5000 km further south of the Arctic. Nearly half of the Eocene, Arctic plant taxa are endemic and the richness of pollen floras implies significant patchiness to the vegetation type and clear regional richness of angiosperms. The reduced latitudinal diversity gradient in Early Eocene North American plant species demonstrates that extreme photoperiod in the Arctic did not limit taxonomic diversity of plants. PMID:22072610

  17. Rapid assessment of butterfly diversity in a montane landscape

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Sara E. Simonson; Paul A. Opler; Thomas J. Stohlgren; Geneva W. Chong

    2001-01-01

    We present the results of a rapid assessment of butterfly diversity in the 754 ha Beaver Meadows study area in Rocky Mountain National Park, Larimer County, Colorado. We measured butterfly species richness and relative abundance as part of a landscape-scale investigation of diversity patterns involving several groups of organisms. A stratified random sampling design was used to include replication in

  18. Monitoring shifts in plant diversity in response to climate change: a method for landscapes

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Thomas J. Stohlgren; April J. Owen; Michelle Lee

    2000-01-01

    Improved sampling designs are needed to detect, monitor, and predict plant migrations and plant diversity changes caused by climate change and other human activities. We propose a methodology based on multi-scale vegetation plots established across forest ecotones which provide baseline data on patterns of plant diversity, invasions of exotic plant species, and plant migrations at landscape scales in Rocky Mountain

  19. Plant diversity, herbivory and resistance of a plant community to invasion in Mediterranean annual communities

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Anne-Hélène Prieur-Richard; Sandra Lavorel; Yan B. Linhart; Anabelle Dos Santos

    2002-01-01

    Several components of the diversity of plant communities, such as species richness, species composition, number of functional groups and functional composition, have been shown to directly affect the performance of exotic species. Exotics can also be affected by herbivores of the native plant community. However, these two possible mechanisms limiting invasion have never been investigated together. The aim of this

  20. Effects of plant diversity on invertebrate herbivory in experimental grassland.

    PubMed

    Scherber, Christoph; Mwangi, Peter N; Temperton, Vicky M; Roscher, Christiane; Schumacher, Jens; Schmid, Bernhard; Weisser, Wolfgang W

    2006-03-01

    The rate at which a plant species is attacked by invertebrate herbivores has been hypothesized to depend on plant species richness, yet empirical evidence is scarce. Current theory predicts higher herbivore damage in monocultures than in species-rich mixtures. We quantified herbivore damage by insects and molluscs to plants in experimental plots established in 2002 from a species pool of 60 species of Central European Arrhenatherum grasslands. Plots differed in plant species richness (1, 2, 4, 8, 16, 60 species), number of functional groups (1, 2, 3, 4), functional group and species composition. We estimated herbivore damage by insects and molluscs at the level of transplanted plant individuals ("phytometer" species Plantago lanceolata, Trifolium pratense, Rumex acetosa) and of the entire plant community during 2003 and 2004. In contrast to previous studies, our design allows specific predictions about the relative contributions of functional diversity, plant functional identity, and species richness in relation to herbivory. Additionally, the phytometer approach is new to biodiversity-herbivory studies, allowing estimates of species-specific herbivory rates within the larger biodiversity-ecosystem functioning context. Herbivory in phytometers and experimental communities tended to increase with plant species richness and the number of plant functional groups, but the effects were rarely significant. Herbivory in phytometers was in some cases positively correlated with community biomass or leaf area index. The most important factor influencing invertebrate herbivory was the presence of particular plant functional groups. Legume (grass) presence strongly increased (decreased) herbivory at the community level. The opposite pattern was found for herbivory in T. pratense phytometers. We conclude that (1) plant species richness is much less important than previously thought and (2) plant functional identity is a much better predictor of invertebrate herbivory in temperate grassland ecosystems. PMID:16231192

  1. Achieving the convention on biological diversity's goals for plant conservation.

    PubMed

    Joppa, L N; Visconti, P; Jenkins, C N; Pimm, S L

    2013-09-01

    Identifying which areas capture how many species is the first question in conservation planning. The Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) aspires to formal protection of at least 17% of the terrestrial world and, through the Global Strategy for Plant Conservation, 60% of plant species. Are these targets of protecting area and species compatible? We show that 67% of plant species live entirely within regions that comprise 17% of the land surface. Moreover, these regions include most terrestrial vertebrates with small geographical ranges. However, the connections between the CBD targets of protecting area and species are complex. Achieving both targets will be difficult because regions with the most plant species have only slightly more land protected than do those with fewer. PMID:24009391

  2. Using Plant Functional Traits to Explain Diversity–Productivity Relationships

    PubMed Central

    Roscher, Christiane; Schumacher, Jens; Gubsch, Marlén; Lipowsky, Annett; Weigelt, Alexandra; Buchmann, Nina; Schmid, Bernhard; Schulze, Ernst-Detlef

    2012-01-01

    Background The different hypotheses proposed to explain positive species richness–productivity relationships, i.e. selection effect and complementarity effect, imply that plant functional characteristics are at the core of a mechanistic understanding of biodiversity effects. Methodology/Principal Findings We used two community-wide measures of plant functional composition, (1) community-weighted means of trait values (CWM) and (2) functional trait diversity based on Rao’s quadratic diversity (FDQ) to predict biomass production and measures of biodiversity effects in experimental grasslands (Jena Experiment) with different species richness (2, 4, 8, 16 and 60) and different functional group number and composition (1 to 4; legumes, grasses, small herbs, tall herbs) four years after establishment. Functional trait composition had a larger predictive power for community biomass and measures of biodiversitity effects (40–82% of explained variation) than species richness per se (<1–13% of explained variation). CWM explained a larger amount of variation in community biomass (80%) and net biodiversity effects (70%) than FDQ (36 and 38% of explained variation respectively). FDQ explained similar proportions of variation in complementarity effects (24%, positive relationship) and selection effects (28%, negative relationship) as CWM (27% of explained variation for both complementarity and selection effects), but for all response variables the combination of CWM and FDQ led to significant model improvement compared to a separate consideration of different components of functional trait composition. Effects of FDQ were mainly attributable to diversity in nutrient acquisition and life-history strategies. The large spectrum of traits contributing to positive effects of CWM on biomass production and net biodiversity effects indicated that effects of dominant species were associated with different trait combinations. Conclusions/Significance Our results suggest that the identification of relevant traits and the relative impacts of functional identity of dominant species and functional diversity are essential for a mechanistic understanding of the role of plant diversity for ecosystem processes such as aboveground biomass production. PMID:22623961

  3. INSECTS ON PLANTS: Diversity of Herbivore Assemblages Revisited

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Thomas M. Lewinsohn; Vojtech Novotny; Yves Basset

    2005-01-01

    ? Abstract The diversity and composition,of herbivore assemblages,was a favored theme,for community,ecology,in the 1970s and culminated,in 1984 with Insects on Plants by Strong, Lawton and Southwood. We scrutinize findings since then, consider- ing analyses of country-wide insect-host catalogs, field studies of local herbivore com- munities, and comparative studies at different spatial scales. Studies in tropical forests have advanced,significantly and offer

  4. Endophytic Fungal Communities Associated with Vascular Plants in the High Arctic Zone Are Highly Diverse and Host-Plant Specific

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Tao; Yao, Yi-Feng

    2015-01-01

    This study assessed the diversity and distribution of endophytic fungal communities associated with the leaves and stems of four vascular plant species in the High Arctic using 454 pyrosequencing with fungal-specific primers targeting the ITS region. Endophytic fungal communities showed high diversity. The 76,691 sequences obtained belonged to 250 operational taxonomic units (OTUs). Of these OTUs, 190 belonged to Ascomycota, 50 to Basidiomycota, 1 to Chytridiomycota, and 9 to unknown fungi. The dominant orders were Helotiales, Pleosporales, Capnodiales, and Tremellales, whereas the common known fungal genera were Cryptococcus, Rhizosphaera, Mycopappus, Melampsora, Tetracladium, Phaeosphaeria, Mrakia, Venturia, and Leptosphaeria. Both the climate and host-related factors might shape the fungal communities associated with the four Arctic plant species in this region. These results suggested the presence of an interesting endophytic fungal community and could improve our understanding of fungal evolution and ecology in the Arctic terrestrial ecosystems. PMID:26067836

  5. Herbivores and nutrients control grassland plant diversity via light limitation.

    SciTech Connect

    Borer, Elizabeth T. [Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Behavior, University of Minnesota; et al, et al

    2014-01-01

    Human alterations to nutrient cycles1,2 and herbivore communities3–7 are affecting global biodiversity dramatically2. Ecological theory predicts these changes should be strongly counteractive: nutrient addition drives plant species loss through intensified competition for light, whereas herbivores prevent competitive exclusion by increasing ground-level light, particularly in productive systems8,9. Here we use experimental data spanning a globally relevant range of conditions to test the hypothesis that herbaceous plant species losses caused by eutrophication may be offset by increased light availability due to herbivory. This experiment, replicated in 40 grasslands on 6 continents, demonstrates that nutrients and herbivores can serve as counteracting forces to control local plant diversity through light limitation, independent of site productivity, soil nitrogen, herbivore type and climate. Nutrient addition consistently reduced local diversity through light limitation, and herbivory rescued diversity at sites where it alleviated light limitation. Thus, species loss from anthropogenic eutrophication can be ameliorated in grasslands where herbivory increases ground-level light.

  6. Macroevolution and the biological diversity of plants and herbivores

    PubMed Central

    Futuyma, Douglas J.; Agrawal, Anurag A.

    2009-01-01

    Terrestrial biodiversity is dominated by plants and the herbivores that consume them, and they are one of the major conduits of energy flow up to higher trophic levels. Here, we address the processes that have generated the spectacular diversity of flowering plants (>300,000 species) and insect herbivores (likely >1 million species). Long-standing macroevolutionary hypotheses have postulated that reciprocal evolution of adaptations and subsequent bursts of speciation have given rise to much of this biodiversity. We critically evaluate various predictions based on this coevolutionary theory. Phylogenetic reconstruction of ancestral states has revealed evidence for escalation in the potency or variety of plant lineages' chemical defenses; however, escalation of defense has been moderated by tradeoffs and alternative strategies (e.g., tolerance or defense by biotic agents). There is still surprisingly scant evidence that novel defense traits reduce herbivory and that such evolutionary novelty spurs diversification. Consistent with the coevolutionary hypothesis, there is some evidence that diversification of herbivores has lagged behind, but has nevertheless been temporally correlated with that of their host-plant clades, indicating colonization and radiation of insects on diversifying plants. However, there is still limited support for the role of host-plant shifts in insect diversification. Finally, a frontier area of research, and a general conclusion of our review, is that community ecology and the long-term evolutionary history of plant and insect diversification are inexorably intertwined. PMID:19815508

  7. Promontory Facility Plant-wide Energy Assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Weir, Roger M.; Bebb, Deanna, Brown, Herman E.

    2008-03-28

    A 1-year plant-wide assessment at the ATK Promontory manufacturing facility utilizing innovative assessment technologies to identify energy savings opportunities in: steam, water, compressed air, HVAC, utility, production, and building systems.

  8. Functional diversity of microbial decomposers facilitates plant coexistence in a plant–microbe–soil feedback model

    PubMed Central

    Miki, Takeshi; Ushio, Masayuki; Fukui, Shin; Kondoh, Michio

    2010-01-01

    Theory and empirical evidence suggest that plant–soil feedback (PSF) determines the structure of a plant community and nutrient cycling in terrestrial ecosystems. The plant community alters the nutrient pool size in soil by affecting litter decomposition processes, which in turn shapes the plant community, forming a PSF system. However, the role of microbial decomposers in PSF function is often overlooked, and it remains unclear whether decomposers reinforce or weaken litter-mediated plant control over nutrient cycling. Here, we present a theoretical model incorporating the functional diversity of both plants and microbial decomposers. Two fundamental microbial processes are included that control nutrient mineralization from plant litter: (i) assimilation of mineralized nutrient into the microbial biomass (microbial immobilization), and (ii) release of the microbial nutrients into the inorganic nutrient pool (net mineralization). With this model, we show that microbial diversity may act as a buffer that weakens plant control over the soil nutrient pool, reversing the sign of PSF from positive to negative and facilitating plant coexistence. This is explained by the decoupling of litter decomposability and nutrient pool size arising from a flexible change in the microbial community composition and decomposition processes in response to variations in plant litter decomposability. Our results suggest that the microbial community plays a central role in PSF function and the plant community structure. Furthermore, the results strongly imply that the plant-centered view of nutrient cycling should be changed to a plant–microbe–soil feedback system, by incorporating the community ecology of microbial decomposers and their functional diversity. PMID:20663953

  9. Climate-driven diversity dynamics in plants and plant-feeding insects.

    PubMed

    Nyman, Tommi; Linder, Hans Peter; Peña, Carlos; Malm, Tobias; Wahlberg, Niklas

    2012-08-01

    The origin of species-rich insect-plant food webs has traditionally been explained by diversifying antagonistic coevolution between plant defences and herbivore counter-defences. However, recent studies combining paleoclimatic reconstructions with time-calibrated phylogenies suggest that variation in global climate determines the distribution, abundance and diversity of plant clades and, hence, indirectly influences the balance between speciation and extinction in associated herbivore groups. Extant insect communities tend to be richest on common plant species that have many close relatives. This could be explained either by climate-driven diffuse cospeciation between plants and insects, or by elevated speciation and reduced extinction in herbivore lineages associated with expanding host taxa (resources). Progress in paleovegetation reconstructions in combination with the rapidly increasing availability of fossil-calibrated phylogenies provide means to discern between these alternative hypotheses. In particular, the 'Diffuse cospeciation' scenario predicts closely matching main diversification periods in plants and in the insects that feed upon them, while the 'Resource abundance-dependent diversification' hypothesis predicts that both positive and negative responses of insect diversity are lagged in relation to host-plant availability. The dramatic Cenozoic changes in global climate provide multiple possibilities for studying the mechanisms by which climatic shifts may drive diversity dynamics in plants and insect herbivores. PMID:22507539

  10. Maintenance of genetic diversity through plant-herbivore interactions

    PubMed Central

    Gloss, Andrew D.; Dittrich, Anna C. Nelson; Goldman-Huertas, Benjamin; Whiteman, Noah K.

    2013-01-01

    Identifying the factors governing the maintenance of genetic variation is a central challenge in evolutionary biology. New genomic data, methods and conceptual advances provide increasing evidence that balancing selection, mediated by antagonistic species interactions, maintains functionally-important genetic variation within species and natural populations. Because diverse interactions between plants and herbivorous insects dominate terrestrial communities, they provide excellent systems to address this hypothesis. Population genomic studies of Arabidopsis thaliana and its relatives suggest spatial variation in herbivory maintains adaptive genetic variation controlling defense phenotypes, both within and among populations. Conversely, inter-species variation in plant defenses promotes adaptive genetic variation in herbivores. Emerging genomic model herbivores of Arabidopsis could illuminate how genetic variation in herbivores and plants interact simultaneously. PMID:23834766

  11. Alpha and beta diversity of plants and animals along a tropical land-use gradient.

    PubMed

    Kessler, Michael; Abrahamczyk, Stefan; Bos, Merijn; Buchori, Damayanti; Putra, Dadang Dwi; Gradstein, S Robbert; Höhn, Patrick; Kluge, Jürgen; Orend, Friederike; Pitopang, Ramadhaniel; Saleh, Shahabuddin; Schulze, Christian H; Sporn, Simone G; Steffan-Dewenter, Ingolf; Tjitrosoedirdjo, Sri S; Tscharntke, Teja

    2009-12-01

    Assessing the overall biological diversity of tropical rain forests is a seemingly insurmountable task for ecologists. Therefore, researchers frequently sample selected taxa that they believe reflect general biodiversity patterns. Usually, these studies focus on the congruence of alpha diversity (the number of species found per sampling unit) between taxa rather than on beta diversity (turnover of species assemblages between sampling units). Such approaches ignore the potential role of habitat heterogeneity that, depending on the taxonomic group considered, can greatly enhance beta diversity at local and landscape scales. We compared alpha and beta diversity of four plant groups (trees, lianas, terrestrial herbs, epiphytic liverworts) and eight animal groups (birds, butterflies, lower canopy ants, lower canopy beetles, dung beetles, bees, wasps, and the parasitoids of the latter two) at 15 sites in Sulawesi, Indonesia, that represented natural rain forest and three types of cacao agroforests differing in management intensity. In total, we recorded 863 species. Patterns of species richness per study site varied strongly between taxonomic groups. Only 13-17% of the variance in species richness of one taxonomic group could be predicted from the species richness of another, and on average 12-18% of the variance of beta diversity of a given group was predicted by that in other groups, although some taxon pairs had higher values (up to 76% for wasps and their parasitoids). The degree of congruence of patterns of alpha diversity was not influenced by sampling completeness, whereas the indicator value for beta diversity improved when using a similarity index that accounts for incomplete sampling. The indication potential of alpha diversity for beta diversity and vice versa was limited within taxa (7-20%) and virtually nil between them (0-4%). We conclude that different taxa can have largely independent patterns of alpha diversity and that patterns of beta diversity can be more congruent. Thus, conservation plans on a landscape scale need to put more emphasis on the high heterogeneity of agroforests and the overarching role of beta diversity shaping overall diversity patterns. PMID:20014584

  12. Grassland plant species diversity decreases invasion by increasing resource use.

    PubMed

    Frankow-Lindberg, Bodil E

    2012-07-01

    Species richness of plant communities has been demonstrated to provide resistance to invasion by unsown species, though the relationship with resource availability varies between studies. The present work involved five grassland species grown in monocultures and in four-species mixtures sown in accordance with a simplex design. The species used represented different functional groups (i.e. grasses, legumes and non-N(2)-fixing species), each of which differed internally in terms of competitiveness. I hypothesized that sown diversity would negatively affect invader performance by decreasing the availability of light and soil nitrogen (N) for invading species, and that functional composition of the sown diversity would affect the functional composition of the invading flora. The experimental plots were harvested for two years, and were fertilized with 100 kg N ha(-1) each year. The number of unsown species (classified into four functional groups) invading each plot and their proportion of the biomass harvested were recorded. The penetration of incoming light through the canopy, the apparent N uptake by the sown species from the soil, and the mineral N content in the soil were measured. I found that diverse communities captured more resources both above- and belowground, and the number of invading species and their biomass production were smaller in mixed than in monoculture plots. However, the sampling effect of one grass was also strong. These results suggest that increased resource use in diverse communities can reduce invasion. PMID:22198798

  13. Plant diversity hotspots in the Atlantic coastal forests of Brazil.

    PubMed

    Murray-Smith, Charlotte; Brummitt, Neil A; Oliveira-Filho, Ary T; Bachman, Steven; Moat, Justin; Lughadha, Eimear M Nic; Lucas, Eve J

    2009-02-01

    Plant-diversity hotspots on a global scale are well established, but smaller local hotspots within these must be identified for effective conservation of plants at the global and local scales. We used the distributions of endemic and endemic-threatened species of Myrtaceae to indicate areas of plant diversity and conservation importance within the Atlantic coastal forests (Mata Atlântica) of Brazil. We applied 3 simple, inexpensive geographic information system (GIS) techniques to a herbarium specimen database: predictive species-distribution modeling (Maxent); complementarity analysis (DIVA-GIS); and mapping of herbarium specimen collection locations. We also considered collecting intensity, which is an inherent limitation of use of natural history records for biodiversity studies. Two separate areas of endemism were evident: the Serra do Mar mountain range from Paraná to Rio de Janeiro and the coastal forests of northern Espírito Santo and southern Bahia. We identified 12 areas of approximately 35 km(2) each as priority areas for conservation. These areas had the highest species richness and were highly threatened by urban and agricultural expansion. Observed species occurrences, species occurrences predicted from the model, and results of our complementarity analysis were congruent in identifying those areas with the most endemic species. These areas were then prioritized for conservation importance by comparing ecological data for each. PMID:18950472

  14. Plant diterpene synthases: exploring modularity and metabolic diversity for bioengineering.

    PubMed

    Zerbe, Philipp; Bohlmann, Jörg

    2015-07-01

    Plants produce thousands of diterpenoid natural products; some of which are of significant industrial value as biobased pharmaceuticals (taxol), fragrances (sclareol), food additives (steviosides), and commodity chemicals (diterpene resin acids). In nature, diterpene synthase (diTPS) enzymes are essential for generating diverse diterpene hydrocarbon scaffolds. While some diTPSs also form oxygenated compounds, more commonly, oxygenation is achieved by cytochrome P450-dependent mono-oxygenases. Recent genome-, transcriptome-, and metabolome-guided gene discovery and enzyme characterization identified novel diTPS functions that form the core of complex modular pathway systems. Insights into diterpene metabolism may translate into the development of new bioengineered microbial and plant-based production systems. PMID:26003209

  15. Assessing genetic diversity in Valencia peanut germplasm using SSR markers

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Valencia peanuts (Arachis hypogaea L.ssp. fastigiata var. fastigiata) are well known for their in-shell market value. Assessment of genetic diversity of the available Valencia germplasm is key to the success of developing improved cultivars with desirable agronomic and quality traits. In the pres...

  16. Using Qualitative Methods to Assess Diverse Institutional Cultures

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Museus, Samuel D.

    2007-01-01

    This article focuses on describing how institutional researchers can use qualitative cultural assessments to better understand the role that their campus cultures play in shaping individual and group behaviors and experiences. A special emphasis is given to the implications of institutional diversity in the processes of designing and conducting…

  17. Ex situ cultivation affects genetic structure and diversity in arable plants.

    PubMed

    Brütting, C; Hensen, I; Wesche, K

    2013-05-01

    Worldwide, botanical gardens cultivate around 80,000 taxa, corresponding to approximately one-quarter of all vascular plants. Most cultivated taxa are, however, held in a small number of collections, and mostly only in small populations. Lack of genetic exchange and stochastic processes in small populations make them susceptible to detrimental genetic effects, which should be most severe in annual species, as sowing cycles are often short. In order to assess whether ex situ cultivation affects genetic diversity of annuals, five annual arable species with similar breeding systems were assessed with 42 in situ populations being compared to 20 ex situ populations using a random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) analysis approach. Population sizes tended to be lower under ex situ cultivation and levels of genetic diversity also tended to be lower in four of the five species, with differences being significant in only two. Ex situ populations showed incomplete representation of alleles found in the wild. The duration of cultivation did not indicate any effect on genetic diversity. This implies that cultivation strategies resulted in different genetic structures in the garden populations. Although not unequivocally pronounced, differences nonetheless imply that conservation strategies in the involved gardens may need improvement. One option is cold storage of seeds, a practice that is not currently followed in the studied ex situ collections. This may reflect that the respective gardens focus on displaying living plant populations. PMID:22882447

  18. Forest policy in the EU and its influence on the plant diversity of woodlands.

    PubMed

    Wulf, Monika

    2003-01-01

    The concept of sustainability in forestry has a long tradition in Europe. However, the perception of 'sustainable management of forests' has changed in accordance with the changes in society, which has made growing demands on ecological, economical, and social functions on forests in recent years. Following the so-called 'Helsinki-process', the EU member states have decided on general guidelines for sustainable management and for the conservation of forest biodiversity. Six criteria and 27 descriptive and quantitative indicators have been defined for the assessment and monitoring of sustainable forest management. Criterion no. 4, relating to semi-natural ancient woodland as a potential vector and source of high biodiversity and respective forest policies, provides the central theme for this paper. The paper is focused on the diversity of vascular plants and explores the possibility that isolated recent woodland could contribute to plant species diversity. Measures are suggested for forest management at forest stand and landscape levels which could enhance the diversity of typical forest plants. PMID:12659800

  19. Genomic diversity of Pseudomonas spp. isolated from aerial or root surfaces of plants

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Among the diverse strains of Pseudomonas fluorescens and Pseudomonas chlororaphis inhabiting plant surfaces are those that protect plants from infection by pathogens. To explore the diversity of these bacteria, we derived genomic sequences of seven strains that suppress plant disease. Along with t...

  20. Floral colour diversity in plant communities, bee colour space and a null model

    PubMed Central

    Gumbert, A.; Kunze, J.; Chittka, L.

    1999-01-01

    Evolutionary biologists have long hypothesized that the diversity of flower colours we see is in part a strategy to promote memorization by pollinators, pollinator constancy, and therefore, a directed and efficient pollen transfer between plants. However, this hypothesis has never been tested against a biologically realistic null model, nor were colours assessed in the way pollinators see them. Our intent here is to fill these gaps. Throughout one year, we sampled floral species compositions at five ecologically distinct sites near Berlin, Germany. Bee-subjective colours were quantified for all 168 species. A model of colour vision was used to predict how similar the colours of sympatric and simultaneously blooming flowers were for bees. We then compared flower colour differences in the real habitats with those of random plant communities. We did not find pronounced deviations from chance when we considered common plants. When we examined rare plants, however, we found significant divergence in two of the five plant communities. At one site, similarly coloured species were found to be more frequent than expected, and at the other two locations, flower colours were indistinguishable from a random distribution. These results fit theoretical considerations that rare plants are under stronger selective pressure to secure pollination than common plants. Our study illustrates the power of linking such distinct biological traditions as community ecology and the neuroethology of bee vision.

  1. Diversity and distribution of Listeria monocytogenes in meat processing plants.

    PubMed

    Martín, Belén; Perich, Adriana; Gómez, Diego; Yangüela, Javier; Rodríguez, Alicia; Garriga, Margarita; Aymerich, Teresa

    2014-12-01

    Listeria monocytogenes is a major concern for the meat processing industry because many listeriosis outbreaks have been linked to meat product consumption. The aim of this study was to elucidate L. monocytogenes diversity and distribution across different Spanish meat processing plants. L. monocytogenes isolates (N = 106) collected from food contact surfaces of meat processing plants and meat products were serotyped and then characterised by multilocus sequence typing (MLST). The isolates were serotyped as 1/2a (36.8%), 1/2c (34%), 1/2b (17.9%) and 4b (11.3%). MLST identified ST9 as the most predominant allelic profile (33% of isolates) followed by ST121 (16%), both of which were detected from several processing plants and meat products sampled in different years, suggesting that those STs are highly adapted to the meat processing environment. Food contact surfaces during processing were established as an important source of L. monocytogenes in meat products because the same STs were obtained in isolates recovered from surfaces and products. L. monocytogenes was recovered after cleaning and disinfection procedures in two processing plants, highlighting the importance of thorough cleaning and disinfection procedures. Epidemic clone (EC) marker ECI was identified in 8.5%, ECIII was identified in 2.8%, and ECV was identified in 7.5% of the 106 isolates. Furthermore, a selection of presumably unrelated ST9 isolates was analysed by multi-virulence-locus sequence typing (MVLST). Most ST9 isolates had the same virulence type (VT11), confirming the clonal origin of ST9 isolates; however, one ST9 isolate was assigned to a new VT (VT95). Consequently, MLST is a reliable tool for identification of contamination routes and niches in processing plants, and MVLST clearly differentiates EC strains, which both contribute to the improvement of L. monocytogenes control programs in the meat industry. PMID:25084653

  2. Soil stability and plant diversity in eco-engineering

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Böll, Albert; Gerber, Werner; Rickli, Christian; Graf, Frank

    2010-05-01

    Slopes affected by superficial sliding and subsequently re-stabilised with eco-engineering measures were investigated, particularly related to soil stability and plant diversity. The sites are situated in three different areas of beech-fir-spruce forest associations of the higher montane zone of Switzerland. Climatic and site characteristics, in paraticular soil properties after the sliding event, of the three investigation areas are very similar. However, the number of species (shrubs and trees) used for the initial planting as well as the year of application of the eco-engineering measures differ substantially. In the investigation area Dallenwil-Wirzweli the biological measures taken in 1981 were restricted to one tree species, namely White Alder (Alnus incana). In Klosters, where measures were taken in 1983 as well as in the Arieschbach valley, where eco-engineering was applied in 1998, the initial planting consisted of 15 species either. Investigations in 2005/2006 revealed neither obvious differences among the three areas nor distinct correlations related to the diversity of the initial planting on the on hand and the development of the vegetation cover and soil stability on the other hand. During the available time of development, the soil aggregate stability increased by 30 to 39%. Compared to the corresponding climax association, the relative values of soil aggregate stability varied between 90 and 120%. Concurrently, the dry unit weight decreased between 1.1 and 3.1 kN/m3. The cumulative vegetation cover varied from 110 to 150%. Due to processes of soil development a distinct shift in the grain size distribution was noticed, from a well sorted gravel with clay and sand (GW-GC) to a silty gravel with sand (GM) in Dallenwil-Wirzweli and a silty to clayey gravel with sand (GC-GM) in Klosters and the Arieschbach valley. Furthermore, in all three investigation areas succession processes were observed that are comparable to average rates of natural secondary succession. The number of shrub and tree species recorded in 2005/2006 varied between 12 and 16. According to the recommendations for silvicultural maintenance of protective forests, the shrub- and tree layer consisted of 75 to 100% of the required plant species in view of the potential target association.

  3. The Development and Validation of the Workforce Diversity Questionnaire: An Instrument to Assess Interactions in Diverse Workgroups.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Larkey, Linda Kathryn

    1996-01-01

    Describes research used to develop an original instrument, the Workforce Diversity Questionnaire, to assess interactions in diverse workgroups. States that a set of proposed dimensions was developed theoretically from literature on cultural diversity, discrimination, and intergroup processes. Explains how validity was tested through confirmatory…

  4. Diversity in plants and other Collembola ameliorate impacts of Sminthurus viridis on plant community structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barker, Gary M.

    2006-05-01

    Five experiments investigated the importance of herbivory by Sminthurus viridis in structuring botanical composition in developing grasslands, and how these effects may be modified by diversity in collembolan and plant species. Differential susceptibility to S. viridis feeding was demonstrated in 23 dicotyledonous and three monocotyledonous plants assayed as seedlings at the first true leaf stage. The composition of seedling communities developing from natural and artificially constructed soil seed banks varied with the level of S. viridis infestation, with plant species least susceptible to herbivory making the greatest contribution to plant biomass. The combined effect of herbivory by S. viridis and Bourletiella hortensis on Trifolium repens biomass was shown to be less than the effect of S. viridis alone, indicating competitive interference. The adverse effects of herbivory by S. viridis on T. repens biomass was reduced by increased diversity of plants growing in association with the legume, and the presence of four non-herbivorous arthropleonan Collembola. S. viridis was shown to reduce seedling numbers, species diversity and biomass in communities developing from the soil seed bank, but the presence of non-herbivorous arthropleonan species reduced the effect of S. viridis. The experiments demonstrate the potential for herbivory by S. viridis to significantly alter species composition in developing grassland communities. However, interactions with collembolan and plant species profoundly modified S. viridis herbivory impacts, either by reducing feeding intensity or enhancing plant growth. These results highlight the fact that data from simple, synthetic systems may be poor predictors of herbivory impacts under field conditions where more complex species interactions occur.

  5. Gene regulation networks generate diverse pigmentation patterns in plants

    PubMed Central

    Albert, Nick W; Davies, Kevin M; Schwinn, Kathy E

    2014-01-01

    The diversity of pigmentation patterns observed in plants occurs due to the spatial distribution and accumulation of colored compounds, which may also be associated with structural changes to the tissue. Anthocyanins are flavonoids that provide red/purple/blue coloration to plants, often forming complex patterns such as spots, stripes, and vein-associated pigmentation, particularly in flowers. These patterns are determined by the activity of MYB-bHLH-WDR (MBW) transcription factor complexes, which activate the anthocyanin biosynthesis genes, resulting in anthocyanin pigment accumulation. Recently, we established that the MBW complex controlling anthocyanin synthesis acts within a gene regulation network that is conserved within at least the Eudicots. This network involves hierarchy, reinforcement, and feedback mechanisms that allow for stringent and responsive regulation of the anthocyanin biosynthesis genes. The gene network and mobile nature of the WDR and R3-MYB proteins provide exciting new opportunities to explore the basis of pigmentation patterning, and to investigate the evolutionary history of the MBW components in land plants. PMID:25763693

  6. ASSESSING PLANTING STOCK QUALITY Comprehensive assessments of planting stock

    E-print Network

    Standiford, Richard B.

    was aggressively managed, but was never unwieldy. To make workloads manageable and guarantee good data, nursery for cold storage, and to evaluate effects of traditional and proposed nursery cultural practices on field to evaluate planting stock quality and nursery practice. Field tests provide proof of the nursery's ability

  7. Molecular approaches: advantages and artifacts in assessing bacterial diversity.

    PubMed

    Pontes, Daniela Santos; Lima-Bittencourt, Cláudia Iracema; Chartone-Souza, Edmar; Amaral Nascimento, Andréa Maria

    2007-07-01

    Bacteria account for a major proportion of Earth's biological diversity. They play essential roles in quite diverse environments and there has been an increasing interest in bacterial biodiversity. Research using novel and efficient tools to identify and characterize bacterial communities has been the key for elucidating biological activities with potential for industrial application. The current approach used for defining bacterial species is based on phenotypic and genomic properties. Traditional and novel DNA-based molecular methods are improving our knowledge of bacterial diversity in nature. Advances in molecular biology have been important for studies of diversity, considerably improving our knowledge of morphological, physiological, and ecological features of bacterial taxa. DNA-DNA hybridization, which has been used for many years, is still considered the golden standard for bacteria species identification. PCR-based methods investigating 16S rRNA gene sequences, and other approaches, such as the metagenome, have been used to study the physiology and diversity of bacteria and to identify novel genes with potential pharmaceutical and other biotechnological applications. We examined the advantages and limitations of molecular methods currently used to analyze bacterial diversity; these are mainly based on the 16S rRNA gene. These methods have allowed us to examine microorganisms that cannot be cultivated by routine methods and have also been useful for phylogenetic studies. We also considered the importance of improvements in microbe culture techniques and how we can combine different methods to allow a more appropriate assessment of bacterial diversity and to determine their real potential for industrial applications. PMID:17476541

  8. Assessing and broadening genetic diversity of a rapeseed germplasm collection

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Jinfeng; Li, Feng; Xu, Kun; Gao, Guizhen; Chen, Biyun; Yan, Guixin; Wang, Nian; Qiao, Jiangwei; Li, Jun; Li, Hao; Zhang, Tianyao; Song, Weiling; Wu, Xiaoming

    2014-01-01

    Assessing the level of genetic diversity within a germplasm collection contributes to evaluating the potential for its utilization as a gene pool to improve the performance of cultivars. In this study, 45 high-quality simple sequence repeat (SSR) markers were screened and used to estimate the genetic base of a world-wide collection of 248 rapeseed (Brassica napus) inbred lines. For the whole collection, the genetic diversity of A genome was higher than that of C genome. The genetic diversity of C genome for the semi-winter type was the lowest among the different germplasm types. Because B. oleracea is usually used to broaden the genetic diversity of C genome in rapeseed, we evaluated the potential of 25 wild B. oleracea lines. More allelic variations and a higher genetic diversity were observed in B. oleracea than in rapeseed. One B. oleracea line and one oilseed B. rapa line were used to generate a resynthesized Brassica napus line, which was then crossed with six semi-winter rapeseed cultivars to produce 7 F1 hybrids. Not only the allele introgression but also mutations were observed in the hybrids, resulting in significant improvement of the genetic base. PMID:25914586

  9. Microbial Phylotype Composition and Diversity Predicts Plant Productivity and Plant-Soil Feedbacks

    PubMed Central

    Bever, James D.; Broadhurst, Linda M.; Thrall, Peter H.

    2012-01-01

    The relationship between ecological variation and microbial genetic composition is critical to understanding microbial influence on community and ecosystem function. In glasshouse trials using nine native legume species and forty rhizobial strains, we find that bacterial rRNA phylotype accounts for 68% of inter-isolate variability in symbiotic effectiveness and 79% of host-specificity in growth response. We also find that rhizobial phylotype diversity and composition of soils collected from a geographic breadth of sites explains the growth responses of two acacia species. Positive soil microbial feedback between the two acacia hosts was largely driven by changes in diversity of rhizobia. Greater rhizobial diversity accumulated in association with the less responsive host species, Acacia salicina, and negatively affected the growth of the more responsive A. stenophylla. Together this work demonstrates correspondence of phylotype with microbial function, and demonstrates that the dynamics of rhizobia on host-species can feed back on plant population performance. PMID:23216788

  10. Soil-plant diversity relationships on a disturbed site in northwestern Colorado

    Microsoft Academic Search

    J. M. Stark; E. F. Redente

    2008-01-01

    A 5-yr-old revegetation plot in the Piceance Basin of northwestern Colorado was used to study the relationship between several soil properties and plant species diversity. Soil properties, including coarse fragment content, topography, depth to bedrock, rooting depth, soil volume, fertility, and salt content, were quantified for 108 subplots. Using simple and multiple regression techniques, plant diversity on the subplots was

  11. Host-plant genotypic diversity and community genetic interactions mediate aphid spatial distribution

    PubMed Central

    Zytynska, Sharon E; Frantz, Laurent; Hurst, Ben; Johnson, Andrew; Preziosi, Richard F; Rowntree, Jennifer K

    2014-01-01

    Genetic variation in plants can influence the community structure of associated species, through both direct and indirect interactions. Herbivorous insects are known to feed on a restricted range of plants, and herbivore preference and performance can vary among host plants within a species due to genetically based traits of the plant (e.g., defensive compounds). In a natural system, we expect to find genetic variation within both plant and herbivore communities and we expect this variation to influence species interactions. Using a three-species plant-aphid model system, we investigated the effect of genetic diversity on genetic interactions among the community members. Our system involved a host plant (Hordeum vulgare) that was shared by an aphid (Sitobion avenae) and a hemi-parasitic plant (Rhinanthus minor). We showed that aphids cluster more tightly in a genetically diverse host-plant community than in a genetic monoculture, with host-plant genetic diversity explaining up to 24% of the variation in aphid distribution. This is driven by differing preferences of the aphids to the different plant genotypes and their resulting performance on these plants. Within the two host-plant diversity levels, aphid spatial distribution was influenced by an interaction among the aphid's own genotype, the genotype of a competing aphid, the origin of the parasitic plant population, and the host-plant genotype. Thus, the overall outcome involves both direct (i.e., host plant to aphid) and indirect (i.e., parasitic plant to aphid) interactions across all these species. These results show that a complex genetic environment influences the distribution of herbivores among host plants. Thus, in genetically diverse systems, interspecific genetic interactions between the host plant and herbivore can influence the population dynamics of the system and could also structure local communities. We suggest that direct and indirect genotypic interactions among species can influence community structure and processes. PMID:24558568

  12. Ground Layer Plant Species Turnover and Beta Diversity in Southern-European Old-Growth Forests

    PubMed Central

    Sabatini, Francesco Maria; Burrascano, Sabina; Tuomisto, Hanna; Blasi, Carlo

    2014-01-01

    Different assembly processes may simultaneously affect local-scale variation of species composition in temperate old-growth forests. Ground layer species diversity reflects chance colonization and persistence of low-dispersal species, as well as fine-scale environmental heterogeneity. The latter depends on both purely abiotic factors, such as soil properties and topography, and factors primarily determined by overstorey structure, such as light availability. Understanding the degree to which plant diversity in old-growth forests is associated with structural heterogeneity and/or to dispersal limitation will help assessing the effectiveness of silvicultural practices that recreate old-growth patterns and structures for the conservation or restoration of plant diversity. We used a nested sampling design to assess fine-scale species turnover, i.e. the proportion of species composition that changes among sampling units, across 11 beech-dominated old-growth forests in Southern Europe. For each stand, we also measured a wide range of environmental and structural variables that might explain ground layer species turnover. Our aim was to quantify the relative importance of dispersal limitation in comparison to that of stand structural heterogeneity while controlling for other sources of environmental heterogeneity. For this purpose, we used multiple regression on distance matrices at the within-stand extent, and mixed effect models at the extent of the whole dataset. Species turnover was best predicted by structural and environmental heterogeneity, especially by differences in light availability and in topsoil nutrient concentration and texture. Spatial distances were significant only in four out of eleven stands with a relatively low explanatory power. This suggests that structural heterogeneity is a more important driver of local-scale ground layer species turnover than dispersal limitation in southern European old-growth beech forests. PMID:24748155

  13. Influence of plant genetic diversity on interactions between higher trophic levels

    PubMed Central

    Moreira, Xoaquín; Mooney, Kailen A.

    2013-01-01

    While the ecological consequences of plant diversity have received much attention, the mechanisms by which intraspecific diversity affects associated communities remains understudied. We report on a field experiment documenting the effects of patch diversity in the plant Baccharis salicifolia (genotypic monocultures versus polycultures of four genotypes), ants (presence versus absence) and their interaction on ant-tended aphids, ants and parasitic wasps, and the mechanistic pathways by which diversity influences their multi-trophic interactions. Five months after planting, polycultures (versus monocultures) had increased abundances of aphids (threefold), ants (3.2-fold) and parasitoids (1.7-fold) owing to non-additive effects of genetic diversity. The effect on aphids was direct, as plant genetic diversity did not mediate ant–aphid, parasitoid–aphid or ant–parasitoid interactions. This increase in aphid abundance occurred even though plant growth (and thus aphid resources) was not higher in polycultures. The increase in ants and parasitoids was an indirect effect, due entirely to higher aphid abundance. Ants reduced parasitoid abundance by 60 per cent, but did not affect aphid abundance or plant growth, and these top-down effects were equivalent between monocultures and polycultures. In summary, intraspecific plant diversity did not increase primary productivity, but nevertheless had strong effects across multiple trophic levels, and effects on both herbivore mutualists and enemies could be predicted entirely as an extension of plant–herbivore interactions. PMID:23485879

  14. Assessing natural resource use by forest-reliant communities in Madagascar using functional diversity and functional redundancy metrics.

    PubMed

    Brown, Kerry A; Flynn, Dan F B; Abram, Nicola K; Ingram, J Carter; Johnson, Steig E; Wright, Patricia

    2011-01-01

    Biodiversity plays an integral role in the livelihoods of subsistence-based forest-dwelling communities and as a consequence it is increasingly important to develop quantitative approaches that capture not only changes in taxonomic diversity, but also variation in natural resources and provisioning services. We apply a functional diversity metric originally developed for addressing questions in community ecology to assess utilitarian diversity of 56 forest plots in Madagascar. The use categories for utilitarian plants were determined using expert knowledge and household questionnaires. We used a null model approach to examine the utilitarian (functional) diversity and utilitarian redundancy present within ecological communities. Additionally, variables that might influence fluctuations in utilitarian diversity and redundancy--specifically number of felled trees, number of trails, basal area, canopy height, elevation, distance from village--were analyzed using Generalized Linear Models (GLMs). Eighteen of the 56 plots showed utilitarian diversity values significantly higher than expected. This result indicates that these habitats exhibited a low degree of utilitarian redundancy and were therefore comprised of plants with relatively distinct utilitarian properties. One implication of this finding is that minor losses in species richness may result in reductions in utilitarian diversity and redundancy, which may limit local residents' ability to switch between alternative choices. The GLM analysis showed that the most predictive model included basal area, canopy height and distance from village, which suggests that variation in utilitarian redundancy may be a result of local residents harvesting resources from the protected area. Our approach permits an assessment of the diversity of provisioning services available to local communities, offering unique insights that would not be possible using traditional taxonomic diversity measures. These analyses introduce another tool available to conservation biologists for assessing how future losses in biodiversity will lead to a reduction in natural resources and provisioning services from forests. PMID:21909413

  15. Plant-Dependent Genotypic and Phenotypic Diversity of Antagonistic Rhizobacteria Isolated from Different Verticillium Host Plants

    PubMed Central

    Berg, Gabriele; Roskot, Nicolle; Steidle, Anette; Eberl, Leo; Zock, Angela; Smalla, Kornelia

    2002-01-01

    To study the effect of plant species on the abundance and diversity of bacterial antagonists, the abundance, the phenotypic diversity, and the genotypic diversity of rhizobacteria isolated from potato, oilseed rape, and strawberry and from bulk soil which showed antagonistic activity towards the soilborne pathogen Verticillium dahliae Kleb. were analyzed. Rhizosphere and soil samples were taken five times over two growing seasons in 1998 and 1999 from a randomized field trial. Bacterial isolates were obtained after plating on R2A (Difco, Detroit, Mich.) or enrichment in microtiter plates containing high-molecular-weight substrates followed by plating on R2A. A total of 5,854 bacteria isolated from the rhizosphere of strawberry, potato, or oilseed rape or bulk soil from fallow were screened by dual testing for in vitro antagonism towards Verticillium. The proportion of isolates with antagonistic activity was highest for strawberry rhizosphere (9.5%), followed by oilseed rape (6.3%), potato (3.7%), and soil (3.3%). The 331 Verticillium antagonists were identified by their fatty acid methyl ester profiles. They were characterized by testing their in vitro antagonism against other pathogenic fungi; their glucanolytic, chitinolytic, and proteolytic activities; and their BOX-PCR fingerprints. The abundance and composition of Verticillium antagonists was plant species dependent. A rather high proportion of antagonists from the strawberry rhizosphere was identified as Pseudomonas putida B (69%), while antagonists belonging to the Enterobacteriaceae (Serratia spp., Pantoea agglomerans) were mainly isolated from the rhizosphere of oilseed rape. For P. putida A and B plant-specific genotypes were observed, suggesting that these bacteria were specifically enriched in each rhizosphere. PMID:12089011

  16. Interactive effects of mycorrhizae and a root hemiparasite on plant community productivity and diversity.

    PubMed

    Stein, Claudia; Rissmann, Cornelia; Hempel, Stefan; Renker, Carsten; Buscot, François; Prati, Daniel; Auge, Harald

    2009-02-01

    Plant communities can be affected both by arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) and hemiparasitic plants. However, little is known about the interactive effects of these two biotic factors on the productivity and diversity of plant communities. To address this question, we set up a greenhouse study in which different AMF inocula and a hemiparasitic plant (Rhinanthus minor) were added to experimental grassland communities in a fully factorial design. In addition, single plants of each species in the grassland community were grown with the same treatments to distinguish direct AMF effects from indirect effects via plant competition. We found that AMF changed plant community structure by influencing the plant species differently. At the community level, AMF decreased the productivity by 15-24%, depending on the particular AMF treatment, mainly because two dominant species, Holcus lanatus and Plantago lanceolata, showed a negative mycorrhizal dependency. Concomitantly, plant diversity increased due to AMF inoculation and was highest in the treatment with a combination of two commercial AM strains. AMF had a positive effect on growth of the hemiparasite, and thereby induced a negative impact of the hemiparasite on host plant biomass which was not found in non-inoculated communities. However, the hemiparasite did not increase plant diversity. Our results highlight the importance of interactions with soil microbes for plant community structure and that these indirect effects can vary among AMF treatments. We conclude that mutualistic interactions with AMF, but not antagonistic interactions with a root hemiparasite, promote plant diversity in this grassland community. PMID:18975009

  17. MSU Departmental Assessment Plan 2009-2010 Department: Plant Sciences and Plant Pathology

    E-print Network

    Maxwell, Bruce D.

    MSU Departmental Assessment Plan 2009-2010 Department: Plant Sciences and Plant Pathology by Department #12;Assessment and Outcomes Progress 2008-2009--Department of Plant Sciences and Plant Pathology The five areas of undergraduate instruction in the Department of Plant Sciences and Plant Pathology (PSPP

  18. Measuring the fate of plant diversity: towards a foundation for future monitoring and opportunities for urgent action

    PubMed Central

    Nic Lughadha, E; Baillie, J; Barthlott, W; Brummitt, N.A; Cheek, M.R; Farjon, A; Govaerts, R; Hardwick, K.A; Hilton-Taylor, C; Meagher, T.R; Moat, J; Mutke, J; Paton, A.J; Pleasants, L.J; Savolainen, V; Schatz, G.E; Smith, P; Turner, I; Wyse-Jackson, P; Crane, P.R

    2005-01-01

    Vascular plants are often considered to be among the better known large groups of organisms, but gaps in the available baseline data are extensive, and recent estimates of total known (described) seed plant species range from 200?000 to 422?000. Of these, global assessments of conservation status using International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) categories and criteria are available for only approximately 10?000 species. In response to recommendations from the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity to develop biodiversity indicators based on changes in the status of threatened species, and trends in the abundance and distribution of selected species, we examine how existing data, in combination with limited new data collection, can be used to maximum effect. We argue that future work should produce Red List Indices based on a representative subset of plant species so that the limited resources currently available are directed towards redressing taxonomic and geographical biases apparent in existing datasets. Sampling the data held in the world's major herbaria, in combination with Geographical Information Systems techniques, can produce preliminary conservation assessments and help to direct selective survey work using existing field networks to verify distributions and gather population data. Such data can also be used to backcast threats and potential distributions through time. We outline an approach that could result in: (i) preliminary assessments of the conservation status of tens of thousands of species not previously assessed, (ii) significant enhancements in the coverage and representation of plant species on the IUCN Red List, and (iii) repeat and/or retrospective assessments for a significant proportion of these. This would result in more robust Sampled Red List Indices that can be defended as more representative of plant diversity as a whole; and eventually, comprehensive assessments at species level for one or more major families of angiosperms. The combined results would allow scientifically defensible generalizations about the current status of plant diversity by 2010 as well as tentative comments on trends. Together with other efforts already underway, this approach would establish a firmer basis for ongoing monitoring of the status of plant diversity beyond 2010 and a basis for comparison with the trend data available for vertebrates. PMID:15814350

  19. Global Analysis of Proline-Rich Tandem Repeat Proteins Reveals Broad Phylogenetic Diversity in Plant Secretomes

    PubMed Central

    Newman, Aaron M.; Cooper, James B.

    2011-01-01

    Cell walls, constructed by precisely choreographed changes in the plant secretome, play critical roles in plant cell physiology and development. Along with structural polysaccharides, secreted proline-rich Tandem Repeat Proteins (TRPs) are important for cell wall function, yet the evolutionary diversity of these structural TRPs remains virtually unexplored. Using a systems-level computational approach to analyze taxonomically diverse plant sequence data, we identified 31 distinct Pro-rich TRP classes targeted for secretion. This analysis expands upon the known phylogenetic diversity of extensins, the most widely studied class of wall structural proteins, and demonstrates that extensins evolved before plant vascularization. Our results also show that most Pro-rich TRP classes have unexpectedly restricted evolutionary distributions, revealing considerable differences in plant secretome signatures that define unexplored diversity. PMID:21829715

  20. Positive Effects of Plant Genotypic and Species Diversity on Anti-Herbivore Defenses in a Tropical Tree Species

    PubMed Central

    Moreira, Xoaquín; Abdala-Roberts, Luis; Parra-Tabla, Víctor; Mooney, Kailen A.

    2014-01-01

    Despite increasing evidence that plant intra- and inter-specific diversity increases primary productivity, and that such effect may in turn cascade up to influence herbivores, there is little information about plant diversity effects on plant anti-herbivore defenses, the relative importance of different sources of plant diversity, and the mechanisms for such effects. For example, increased plant growth at high diversity may lead to reduced investment in defenses via growth-defense trade-offs. Alternatively, positive effects of plant diversity on plant growth may lead to increased herbivore abundance which in turn leads to a greater investment in plant defenses. The magnitude of trait variation underlying diversity effects is usually greater among species than among genotypes within a given species, so plant species diversity effects on resource use by producers as well as on higher trophic levels should be stronger than genotypic diversity effects. Here we compared the relative importance of plant genotypic and species diversity on anti-herbivore defenses and whether such effects are mediated indirectly via diversity effects on plant growth and/or herbivore damage. To this end, we performed a large-scale field experiment where we manipulated genotypic diversity of big-leaf mahogany (Swietenia macrophylla) and tree species diversity, and measured effects on mahogany growth, damage by the stem-boring specialist caterpillar Hypsipyla grandella, and defensive traits (polyphenolics and condensed tannins in stem and leaves). We found that both forms of plant diversity had positive effects on stem (but not leaf) defenses. However, neither source of diversity influenced mahogany growth, and diversity effects on defenses were not mediated by either growth-defense trade-offs or changes in stem-borer damage. Although the mechanism(s) of diversity effects on plant defenses are yet to be determined, our study is one of the few to test for and show producer diversity effects on plant chemical defenses. PMID:25141305

  1. Plant diversity and conservation in China: planning a strategic bioresource for a sustainable future.

    PubMed

    Huang, Hongwen

    2011-01-01

    China is one of the richest countries for plant diversity with approximately 33 000 vascular plant species, ranking second in the world. However, the plant diversity in China is increasingly threatened, with an estimated 4000–5000 plant species being threatened or on the verge of extinction, making China, proportionally, one of the highest priorities for global plant biodiversity conservation. Coming in the face of the current ecological crisis, it is timely that China has launched China's Strategy for Plant Conservation (CSPC). China has increasingly recognized the importance of plant diversity in efforts to conserve and sustainably use its plant diversity. More than 3000 nature reserves have been established, covering approximately 16% of the land surface of China. These natural reserves play important roles in plant conservation, covering more than 85% of types of terrestrial natural ecosystems, 40% of types of natural wetlands, 20% of native forests and 65% of natural communities of vascular plants. Meanwhile, the flora conserved in botanical gardens is also extensive. A recent survey shows that the 10 largest botanical gardens have living collections of 43 502 taxa, with a total of 24 667 species in ex situ conservation. These provide an important reserve of plant resources for sustainable economic and social development in China. Plant diversity is the basis for bioresources and sustainable utilization. The 21st century is predicted to be an era of bio-economy driven by advances of bioscience and biotechnology. Bio-economy may become the fourth economy form after agricultural, industrial, and information and information technology economies, having far-reaching impacts on sustainable development in agriculture, forestry, environmental protection, light industry, food supply and health care and other micro-economy aspects. Thus, a strategic and forward vision for conservation of plant diversity and sustainable use of plant resources in the 21st century is of far-reaching significance for sustainable development of Chinese economy and society. PMID:22059249

  2. Plant species identity and diversity effects on different trophic levels of nematodes in the soil food web

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Gerlinde B. De Deyn; Ciska E. Raaijmakers; Jasper van Ruijven; Frank Berendse; Wim H. van der Putten

    2004-01-01

    Previous studies on biodiversity and soil food web composition have mentioned plant species identity, as well as plant species diversity as the main factors affecting the abundance and diversity of soil organisms. However, most studies have been carried out under limitations of time, space, or appropriate controls. In order to further examine the relation between plant species diversity and the

  3. Plant Wide Assessment for SIFCO Industries, Inc.

    SciTech Connect

    Kelly Kissock, Arvind Thekdi et. al.

    2005-07-06

    Sifco Industries carreid out a plant wide energy assessment under a collaborative program with the U.S. Department of Energy during October 2004 to September 2005. During the year, personnel from EIS, E3M, DPS, BuyCastings.Com, and Sifco plant facilities and maintenance personnel, as a team collected energy use, construction, process, equipment and operational information about the plant. Based on this information, the team identified 13 energy savings opportunities. Near term savings opportunities have a total potential savings of about $1,329,000 per year and a combined simple payback of about 11 months. Implementation of these recommendations would reduce CO2 emissions by about 16,000,000 pounds per year, which would reduce overall plant CO2 emissions by about 45%. These totals do not include another $830,000 per year in potential savings with an estimated 9-month payback, from converting the forging hammers from steam to compressed air.

  4. Soil fungal abundance and diversity: another victim of the invasive plant Centaurea maculosa

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Amanda K Broz; Daniel K Manter; Jorge M Vivanco

    2007-01-01

    Interactions between plants and soil microbes are important determinants of both above- and belowground community composition, and ultimately ecosystem function. As exotic plants continue to invade and modify native plant communities, there has been increasing interest in determining the influence of exotic invasives on native soil microbial communities. Here, using highly sensitive molecular techniques, we examine fungal abundance and diversity

  5. Genetic diversity and clonality in the federally endangered plant Clematis socialis Kral (Ranunculaceae)1

    E-print Network

    Boyd, Robert S.

    Genetic diversity and clonality in the federally endangered plant Clematis socialis Kral endangered plant Clematis socialis Kral (Ranunculaceae). J. Torrey Bot. Soc. 134: 000­000. 2007--Allozyme to be studied genetically is the Alabama leather flower, Clematis socialis Kral, an extremely rare plant

  6. Single nucleotide polymorphisms for assessing genetic diversity in castor bean (Ricinus communis)

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Castor bean (Ricinus communis) is an agricultural crop and garden ornamental that is widely cultivated and has been introduced worldwide. Understanding population structure and the distribution of castor bean cultivars has been challenging because of limited genetic variability. We analyzed the population genetics of R. communis in a worldwide collection of plants from germplasm and from naturalized populations in Florida, U.S. To assess genetic diversity we conducted survey sequencing of the genomes of seven diverse cultivars and compared the data to a reference genome assembly of a widespread cultivar (Hale). We determined the population genetic structure of 676 samples using single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) at 48 loci. Results Bayesian clustering indicated five main groups worldwide and a repeated pattern of mixed genotypes in most countries. High levels of population differentiation occurred between most populations but this structure was not geographically based. Most molecular variance occurred within populations (74%) followed by 22% among populations, and 4% among continents. Samples from naturalized populations in Florida indicated significant population structuring consistent with local demes. There was significant population differentiation for 56 of 78 comparisons in Florida (pairwise population ?PT values, p < 0.01). Conclusion Low levels of genetic diversity and mixing of genotypes have led to minimal geographic structuring of castor bean populations worldwide. Relatively few lineages occur and these are widely distributed. Our approach of determining population genetic structure using SNPs from genome-wide comparisons constitutes a framework for high-throughput analyses of genetic diversity in plants, particularly in species with limited genetic diversity. PMID:20082707

  7. 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 weevi?s 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 weevi?s 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

  8. Native plant diversity resists invasion at both low and high resource levels.

    PubMed

    Maron, John; Marler, Marilyn

    2007-10-01

    Human modification of the environment is causing both loss of species and changes in resource availability. While studies have examined how species loss at the local level can influence invasion resistance, interactions between species loss and other components of environmental change remain poorly studied. In particular, the manner in which native diversity interacts with resource availability to influence invasion resistance is not well understood. We created experimental plant assemblages that varied in native species (1-16 species) and/or functional richness (defined by rooting morphology and phenology; one to five functional groups). We crossed these diversity treatments with resource (water) addition to determine their interactive effects on invasion resistance to spotted knapweed (Centaurea maculosa), a potent exotic invader in the intermountain West of the United States. We also determined how native diversity and resource addition influenced plant-available soil nitrogen, soil moisture, and light. Assemblages with lower species and functional diversity were more heavily invaded than assemblages with greater species and functional diversity. In uninvaded assemblages, experimental addition of water increased soil moisture and plant-available nitrogen and decreased light availability. The availability of these resources generally declined with increasing native plant diversity. Although water addition increased susceptibility to invasion, it did not fundamentally change the negative relationship between diversity and invasibility. Thus, native diversity provided strong invasion resistance even under high resource availability. These results suggest that the effects of local diversity can remain robust despite enhanced resource levels that are predicted under scenarios of global change. PMID:18027767

  9. Plant diversity partitioning in Mediterranean croplands: effects of farming intensity, field edge, and landscape context.

    PubMed

    Concepción, Elena D; Fernández-González, Federico; Díaz, Mario

    2012-04-01

    Farmland biodiversity is affected by factors acting at various spatial scales. However, most studies to date have focused on the field or farm scales that only account for local (alpha) diversity, and these may underestimate the contribution of other diversity components (beta diversity) to total (gamma) farmland diversity. In this work, we aimed to identify the most suitable management options and the scale at which they should be implemented to maximize benefits for diversity. We used a multi-scale additive partitioning approach, with data on plant diversity from 640 plots in 32 cereal crop fields from three agricultural regions of central Spain that differed in landscape configuration. We analyzed the relative contribution to overall plant diversity of different diversity components at various spatial scales and how these diversity components responded to a set of local (application of agri-environment schemes [AES] and position within the field) and landscape (field size and landscape connectivity and composition) factors. Differences in species composition among regions and then among fields within regions contributed most to overall plant diversity. Positive edge effects were found on all diversity components at both the field- and regional scales, whereas application of AES benefited all diversity components only at the field scale. Landscape factors had strong influences on plant diversity, especially length of seminatural boundaries, which increased species richness at both the field and the regional scales. In addition, positive effects of percentage of nonproductive land-uses in the landscape were found on all diversity components at the regional scale. Results showed that components that contributed most to overall plant diversity were not benefited by current AES. We conclude that agri-environmental policies should incorporate and prioritize measures aimed at the maintenance of seminatural boundaries and patches of nonproductive habitats within agricultural landscapes, through landscape planning, cross-compliance, or high nature-value farmland programs. These options will help to conserve overall plant diversity at regional scales, as well as the spillover of plant species from such seminatural elements into crops, especially in Mediterranean areas that still harbor extensive farming and relatively complex landscapes. PMID:22645825

  10. 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

  11. Protein change in plant evolution: tracing one thread connecting molecular and phenotypic diversity

    PubMed Central

    Bartlett, Madelaine E.; Whipple, Clinton J.

    2013-01-01

    Proteins change over the course of evolutionary time. New protein-coding genes and gene families emerge and diversify, ultimately affecting an organism’s phenotype and interactions with its environment. Here we survey the range of structural protein change observed in plants and review the role these changes have had in the evolution of plant form and function. Verified examples tying evolutionary change in protein structure to phenotypic change remain scarce. We will review the existing examples, as well as draw from investigations into domestication, and quantitative trait locus (QTL) cloning studies searching for the molecular underpinnings of natural variation. The evolutionary significance of many cloned QTL has not been assessed, but all the examples identified so far have begun to reveal the extent of protein structural diversity tolerated in natural systems. This molecular (and phenotypic) diversity could come to represent part of natural selection’s source material in the adaptive evolution of novel traits. Protein structure and function can change in many distinct ways, but the changes we identified in studies of natural diversity and protein evolution were predicted to fall primarily into one of six categories: altered active and binding sites; altered protein–protein interactions; altered domain content; altered activity as an activator or repressor; altered protein stability; and hypomorphic and hypermorphic alleles. There was also variability in the evolutionary scale at which particular changes were observed. Some changes were detected at both micro- and macroevolutionary timescales, while others were observed primarily at deep or shallow phylogenetic levels. This variation might be used to determine the trajectory of future investigations in structural molecular evolution. PMID:24124420

  12. Forest species diversity reduces disease risk in a generalist plant pathogen invasion

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Haas, Sarah E.; Hooten, Mevin B.; Rizzo, David M.; Meentemeyer, Ross K.

    2011-01-01

    Empirical evidence suggests that biodiversity loss can increase disease transmission, yet our understanding of the 'diversity-disease hypothesis' for generalist pathogens in natural ecosystems is limited. We used a landscape epidemiological approach to examine two scenarios regarding diversity effects on the emerging plant pathogen Phytophthora ramorum across a broad, heterogeneous ecoregion: (1) an amplification effect exists where disease risk is greater in areas with higher plant diversity due to the pathogen's wide host range, or (2) a dilution effect where risk is reduced with increasing diversity due to lower competency of alternative hosts. We found evidence for pathogen dilution, whereby disease risk was lower in sites with higher species diversity, after accounting for potentially confounding effects of host density and landscape heterogeneity. Our results suggest that although nearly all plants in the ecosystem are hosts, alternative hosts may dilute disease transmission by competent hosts, thereby buffering forest health from infectious disease.

  13. Ecological Effects of Roads on the Plant Diversity of Coastal Wetland in the Yellow River Delta

    PubMed Central

    Li, Yunzhao; Du, Siyao; Han, Guangxuan; Qu, Fanzhu; Wang, Guangmei; Fu, Yuqin; Zhan, Chao

    2014-01-01

    The 26 sample sites in 7 study plots adjacent to asphalt road and earth road in coastal wetland in the Yellow River Delta were selected to quantify plant diversity using quadrat sampling method in plant bloom phase of July and August 2012. The indice of ?T and Jaccard's coefficient were applied to evaluate the species diversity. The results showed that the plant diversities and alien plants were high in the range of 0–20?m to the road verge. There were more exotics and halophytes in plots of asphalt roadside than that of earth roadside. However, proportion of halophytes in habitats of asphalt roadsides was lower than that of earth roadside. By comparing ?-diversity, there were more common species in the asphalt roadsides than that in the earth roadsides. The similarity of plant communities in studied plots of asphalt roadsides and earth roadsides increased with increasing the distance to road verge. The effect range of roads for plant diversity in study region was about 20?m to road verge. Our results indicate that the construction and maintenance of roads in wetland could increase the plant species diversities of communities and risk of alien species invasion. PMID:25147872

  14. Ecological effects of roads on the plant diversity of coastal wetland in the Yellow River Delta.

    PubMed

    Li, Yunzhao; Yu, Junbao; Ning, Kai; Du, Siyao; Han, Guangxuan; Qu, Fanzhu; Wang, Guangmei; Fu, Yuqin; Zhan, Chao

    2014-01-01

    The 26 sample sites in 7 study plots adjacent to asphalt road and earth road in coastal wetland in the Yellow River Delta were selected to quantify plant diversity using quadrat sampling method in plant bloom phase of July and August 2012. The indice of ? T and Jaccard's coefficient were applied to evaluate the species diversity. The results showed that the plant diversities and alien plants were high in the range of 0-20 m to the road verge. There were more exotics and halophytes in plots of asphalt roadside than that of earth roadside. However, proportion of halophytes in habitats of asphalt roadsides was lower than that of earth roadside. By comparing ?-diversity, there were more common species in the asphalt roadsides than that in the earth roadsides. The similarity of plant communities in studied plots of asphalt roadsides and earth roadsides increased with increasing the distance to road verge. The effect range of roads for plant diversity in study region was about 20 m to road verge. Our results indicate that the construction and maintenance of roads in wetland could increase the plant species diversities of communities and risk of alien species invasion. PMID:25147872

  15. Aspects of volcanic hazards assessment for the Bataan nuclear power plant, Luzon Peninsula, Philippines

    Microsoft Academic Search

    A. C. M. Volentik; C. B. Connor; L. J. Connor; C. Bonadonna

    How would the eruption of a volcano affect a nearby nuclear power plant (NPP)? Specifically, would the products of a volcanic eruption impact the operation of a NPP located near an erupting volcano? The answer to this question begins with an assessment of the geological phenomena that result from volcanic eruptions. These phenomena are diverse, and include tephra fallout, pyroclastic

  16. Decline in exotic tree density facilitates increased plant diversity: the experience from Melaleuca quinquenervia invaded wetlands

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The Australian tree Melaleuca quinquenervia (melaleuca) formed dense monocultural forests several decades after invading Florida and the Caribbean islands. These dominant forests have displaced native vegetation in sensitive wetland systems. We hypothesized that native plant diversity would increa...

  17. Industrial Assessments and Why Your Plant Should Have One 

    E-print Network

    Glaser, C. J.; Demetrops, J. P.

    1998-01-01

    The "in-depth" assessment of a plant site and its facilities, services and manufacturing operations can help you make your plant cleaner, more productive and more energy efficient. This paper discusses the components of a successful assessment, what...

  18. DOE/OIT Plant-Wide Energy Assessment Experience Summary 

    E-print Network

    Olszewski, M.; Leach, R.; McElhaney, K.

    2001-01-01

    The Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Industrial Technologies (OIT) is sponsoring cost-shared, plant-wide energy assessments of industrial facilities through its BestPractices Program. The purpose of these assessments is to examine plant utility...

  19. Plant Growth Promotion Potential Is Equally Represented in Diverse Grapevine Root-Associated Bacterial Communities from Different Biopedoclimatic Environments

    PubMed Central

    Fusi, Marco; Cherif, Ameur; Abou-Hadid, Ayman; El-Bahairy, Usama; Sorlini, Claudia; Daffonchio, Daniele

    2013-01-01

    Plant-associated bacteria provide important services to host plants. Environmental factors such as cultivar type and pedoclimatic conditions contribute to shape their diversity. However, whether these environmental factors may influence the plant growth promoting (PGP) potential of the root-associated bacteria is not widely understood. To address this issue, the diversity and PGP potential of the bacterial assemblage associated with the grapevine root system of different cultivars in three Mediterranean environments along a macrotransect identifying an aridity gradient were assessed by culture-dependent and independent approaches. According to 16S rRNA gene PCR-DGGE, the structure of endosphere and rhizosphere bacterial communities was highly diverse (P = 0.03) and was associated with a cultivar/latitudinal/climatic effect. Despite being diverse, the bacterial communities associated with Egyptian grapevines shared a higher similarity with the Tunisian grapevines than those cultivated in North Italy. A similar distribution, according to the cultivar/latitude/aridity gradients, was observed for the cultivable bacteria. Many isolates (23%) presented in vitro multiple stress resistance capabilities and PGP activities, the most frequent being auxin synthesis (82%), insoluble phosphate solubilisation (61%), and ammonia production (70%). The comparable numbers and types of potential PGP traits among the three different environmental settings indicate a strong functional homeostasis of beneficial bacteria associated with grape root. PMID:23878810

  20. Plant Diversity and Invasives in Blue Oak Savannas of the Southern Sierra Nevada1

    E-print Network

    Standiford, Richard B.

    Plant Diversity and Invasives in Blue Oak Savannas of the Southern Sierra Nevada1 Jon E. Keeley2 Abstract Blue oak savannas were found to be substantially more diverse at all scales from localized point of the understory flora in these blue oak savannas, comprising three- fourths of the species at the smallest scale

  1. Neogene and Quaternary history of vegetation, climate, and plant diversity in Amazonia

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Thomas van der Hammen; Henry Hooghiemstra

    2000-01-01

    The neotropical Amazonian and Andean plant diversity developed mainly during the Tertiary. In Amazonia, Miocene floral diversity seems considerably higher than today. During the Neogene, tropical taxa entered newly created montane area, and montane taxa entered the tropical lowlands. The general decrease of temperature during the upper Neogene and especially during the Quaternary glacial periods may have caused considerable extinctions

  2. Biological Diversity of the Guiana Shield: Georeferencing Plants of the Guiana Shield

    E-print Network

    Mathis, Wayne N.

    Biological Diversity of the Guiana Shield: Georeferencing Plants of the Guiana Shield Eduardo To document, understand, and conserve the biological diversity of the shield area. #12;#12;What does · Expeditions (collect) · Preserve · Process · Identify · Inventory · Barcode · File in collection (At home

  3. Interactive effects of mycorrhizae and a root hemiparasite on plant community productivity and diversity

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Claudia Stein; Cornelia Rißmann; Stefan Hempel; Carsten Renker; François Buscot; Daniel Prati; Harald Auge

    2009-01-01

    Plant communities can be affected both by arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) and hemiparasitic plants. However, little is\\u000a known about the interactive effects of these two biotic factors on the productivity and diversity of plant communities. To\\u000a address this question, we set up a greenhouse study in which different AMF inocula and a hemiparasitic plant (Rhinanthus minor) were added to experimental

  4. Pathways of nutrient loading and impacts on plant diversity in a New York peatland

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Drexler, J.Z.; Bedford, B.L.

    2002-01-01

    Nutrient loading is a subtle, yet serious threat to the preservation of high diversity wetlands such as peatlands. Pathways of nutrient loading and impacts on plant diversity in a small peatland in New York State, USA were determined by collecting and analyzing a suite of hydrogeological, hydro-chemical, soil, and vegetation data. Piezometer clusters within an intensive network constituted hydro-chemical sampling points and focal points for randomly selected vegetation quadrats and soil-coring locations. Hydrogeological data and nutrient analyses showed that P and K loading occurred chiefly by means of overland flow from an adjacent farm field, whereas N loading occurred predominantly through ground-water flow from the farm field. Redundancy analysis and polynomial regression showed that nutrients, particularly total P in peat, total K in peat, extractable NH4-N, and NO3-N flux in ground water, were strongly negatively correlated with plant diversity measures at the site. No other environmental variables except vegetation measures associated with eutrophication demonstrated such a strong relationship with plant diversity. Nitrate loading over 4 mg m -2 day-1 was associated with low plant diversity, and Ca fluxes between 80 and 130 mg m-2 day-1 were associated with high plant diversity. Areas in the site with particularly low vascular plant and bryophyte species richness and Shannon-Wiener diversity (H') occurred adjacent to the farm field and near a hillside spring. High H' and species richness of vascular plants and bryophytes occurred in areas that were further removed from agriculture, contained no highly dominant vegetation, and were situated directly along the ground-water flow paths of springs. These areas were characterized by relatively constant water levels and consistent, yet moderate fluxes of base cations and nutrients. Overall, this study demonstrates that knowledge of site hydrogeology is crucial for determining potential pathways of nutrient loading and for developing relationships between nutrient inflows and wetland plant diversity. ?? 2002, The Society of Wetland Scientists.

  5. Effects of thinning on plant species diversity and composition of understory herbs in a larch plantation

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Jiaojun Zhu; Zhihong Mao; Caihong Zhang; Qiaoling Yan; Zugen Liu

    2008-01-01

    The effects of thinning on plant species diversity and composition of understory herbs in a larch plantation were investigated.\\u000a The relationships between plant species diversity and composition of understory herbs and light conditions were established.\\u000a Twenty-five 1 m × 1 m plots and fifteen 13 m × 1 m transects were set up in unthinned and thinned stands, respectively. All

  6. Psychometric Evaluation of Lexical Diversity Indices: Assessing Length Effects

    PubMed Central

    Fergadiotis, Gerasimos; Wright, Heather Harris; Green, Samuel B.

    2015-01-01

    Purpose Several novel techniques have been developed recently to assess the breadth of speaker’s vocabulary exhibited in a language sample. The specific aim of this study was to increase our understanding of the validity of the scores generated by different lexical diversity (LD) estimation techniques. Four techniques were explored: D, Maas, Measure of Textual Lexical Diversity (MTLD), and the Moving Average Type Token Ratio (MATTR). Method Four LD indices were estimated for language samples on four discourse tasks (procedures, eventcasts, story retell, and recounts) from 442 neurologically intact adults. The resulting data were analyzed using structural equation modeling. Results The scores on the MATTR and MTLD estimation techniques were stronger indicators of the LD of the language samples. The results for the other two techniques were consistent with the presence of method factors representing construct-irrelevant sources. Conclusions These findings offer a deeper understanding of the relative validity of the four estimation techniques and should assist clinicians and researchers in the selection of LD measures of language samples that minimize construct-irrelevant sources. PMID:25766139

  7. ?-Diversity of Functional Groups of Woody Plants in a Tropical Dry Forest in Yucatan

    PubMed Central

    López-Martínez, Jorge Omar; Sanaphre-Villanueva, Lucía; Dupuy, Juan Manuel; Hernández-Stefanoni, José Luis; Meave, Jorge Arturo; Gallardo-Cruz, José Alberto

    2013-01-01

    Two main theories have attempted to explain variation in plant species composition (?-diversity). Niche theory proposes that most of the variation is related to environment (environmental filtering), whereas neutral theory posits that dispersal limitation is the main driver of ?-diversity. In this study, we first explored how ?- and ?-diversity of plant functional groups defined by growth form (trees, shrubs and lianas, which represent different strategies of resource partitioning), and dispersal syndrome (autochory, anemochory and zoochory, which represent differences in dispersal limitation) vary with successional age and topographic position in a tropical dry forest. Second, we examined the effects of environmental, spatial, and spatially-structured environmental factors on ?-diversity of functional groups; we used the spatial structure of sampling sites as a proxy for dispersal limitation, and elevation, soil properties and forest stand age as indicators of environmental filtering. We recorded 200 species and 22,245 individuals in 276 plots; 120 species were trees, 41 shrubs and 39 lianas. We found that ?-diversity was highest for shrubs, intermediate for lianas and lowest for trees, and was slightly higher for zoochorous than for autochorous and anemochorous species. All three dispersal syndromes, trees and shrubs varied in composition among vegetation classes (successional age and topographic position), whilst lianas did not. ?-diversity was influenced mostly by proxies of environmental filtering, except for shrubs, for which the influence of dispersal limitation was more important. Stand age and topography significantly influenced ?-diversity across functional groups, but showed a low influence on ?-diversity –possibly due to the counterbalancing effect of resprouting on plant distribution and composition. Our results show that considering different plant functional groups reveals important differences in both ?- and ?-diversity patterns and correlates that are not apparent when focusing on overall woody plant diversity, and that have important implications for ecological theory and biodiversity conservation. PMID:24040014

  8. Effects of plant diversity on invertebrate herbivory in experimental grassland

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Christoph Scherber; Peter N. Mwangi; Vicky M. Temperton; Christiane Roscher; Jens Schumacher; Bernhard Schmid; Wolfgang W. Weisser

    2006-01-01

    The rate at which a plant species is attacked by invertebrate herbivores has been hypothesized to depend on plant species richness, yet empirical evidence is scarce. Current theory predicts higher herbivore damage in monocultures than in species-rich mixtures. We quantified herbivore damage by insects and molluscs to plants in experimental plots established in 2002 from a species pool of 60

  9. On the factors that promote the diversity of herbivorous insects and plants in tropical forests.

    PubMed

    Becerra, Judith X

    2015-05-12

    Some of the most fascinating and challenging questions in ecology are why biodiversity is highest in tropical forests and whether the factors involved are unique to these habitats. I did a worldwide test of the hypotheses that plant community divergence in antiherbivore traits results in higher insect herbivore diversity, and that predominant attack by specialized herbivores promotes plant richness. I found strong correlative support for both ideas. Butterfly diversity was greatest in regions where the community average species-pairwise dissimilarity in antiherbivore traits among plant species was highest. There was also a strong positive relationship between specialized (insect) vs. generalized (mammal) herbivores and plant richness. Regions where herbivory impact by mammals was higher than that of insects tended to have lower plant diversities. In contrast, regions in which insects are the main consumers, particularly in the Central and South American tropics, had the highest plant richness. Latitude did not explain any residual variance in insect or plant richness. The strong connections found between insect specialization, plant defense divergence, and plant and insect diversities suggest that increasing our understanding of the ecology of biological communities can aid in considerations of how to preserve biodiversity in the future. PMID:25902509

  10. Interactive effects of plant species diversity and elevated CO2 on soil biota and nutrient cycling.

    PubMed

    Niklaus, P A; Alphei, J; Kampichler, C; Kandeler, E; Körner, C; Tscherko, D; Wohlfender, M

    2007-12-01

    Terrestrial ecosystems consist of mutually dependent producer and decomposer subsystems, but not much is known on how their interactions are modified by plant diversity and elevated atmospheric CO2 concentrations. Factorially manipulating grassland plant species diversity and atmospheric CO2 concentrations for five years, we tested whether high diversity or elevated CO2 sustain larger or more active soil communities, affect soil aggregation, water dynamics, or nutrient cycling, and whether plant diversity and elevated CO2 interact. Nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) pools, symbiotic N2 fixation, plant litter quality, soil moisture, soil physical structure, soil nematode, collembola and acari communities, soil microbial biomass and microflora community structure (phospholipid fatty acid [PLFA] profiles), soil enzyme activities, and rates of C fluxes to soils were measured. No increases in soil C fluxes or the biomass, number, or activity of soil organisms were detected at high plant diversity; soil H2O and aggregation remained unaltered. Elevated CO2 affected the ecosystem primarily by improving plant and soil water status by reducing leaf conductance, whereas changes in C cycling appeared to be of subordinate importance. Slowed-down soil drying cycles resulted in lower soil aggregation under elevated CO2. Collembola benefited from extra soil moisture under elevated CO2, whereas other faunal groups did not respond. Diversity effects and interactions with elevated CO2 may have been absent because soil responses were mainly driven by community-level processes such as rates of organic C input and water use; these drivers were not changed by plant diversity manipulations, possibly because our species diversity gradient did not extend below five species and because functional type composition remained unaltered. Our findings demonstrate that global change can affect soil aggregation, and we advocate that soil aggregation should be considered as a dynamic property that may respond to environmental changes and feed back on other ecosystem functions. PMID:18229849

  11. Diversity of use and local knowledge of wild edible plant resources in Nepal

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Wild edible plants (WEP) provide staple and supplement foods, as well as cash income to local communities, thus favouring food security. However, WEP are largely ignored in land use planning and implementation, economic development, and biodiversity conservation. Moreover, WEP-related traditional knowledge is rapidly eroding. Therefore, we designed this study to fulfill a part of the knowledge gap by providing data on diversity, traditional knowledge, economic potential, and conservation value of WEP from Nepal. Methods The information was collected through focus group discussions and key informant interviews. Percentage of general utility of the plants among the study communities was evaluated using the Chi-square (?2) test of homogeneity. High priority species were identified after consultation with the local stakeholders followed by scoring based on defined criteria. Pairwise ranking was used to assess ethnoecological knowledge to identify the threats to WEP. Results We documented 81 species belonging to Angiosperms (74), Pteridophytes (5), and Fungi (2). Most of the species were used as fruits (44 species) followed by vegetables (36). Almost half of the species (47%) were also used for purposes other than food. From the species with market value (37% of the total), 10 were identified as high priority species. Pairwise ranking revealed that WEP are threatened mostly by habitat destruction, land-use change and over-harvesting. Some of these plants are crop wild relatives and could thus be used for crop improvement. Interestingly, our study also revealed that young people who spend most of the time in the forest as herdsmen are particularly knowledgeable of wild fruit plants. Conclusion We provide empirical evidence from a relatively large area of Nepal about diversity and status of WEP, as well as methodological insights about the proper knowledge holders to consult. Regarding the unique and important knowledge they have on WEP, young people should be included when recruiting participants to ethnobotanical studies or to any type of consultation about WEP. The habit of using wild edible plants is still alive and is a traditional culinary practice that demonstrates rich traditional knowledge of local people. WEP were found to be important for livelihood as well as showing great potential for crop improvement. Priority species should be promoted for income generation activities through sustainable collection and trade. Communities should engage in minimizing the threats to these valuable resources. PMID:22546349

  12. Soil animals alter plant litter diversity effects on decomposition

    PubMed Central

    Hättenschwiler, Stephan; Gasser, Patrick

    2005-01-01

    Most of the terrestrial net primary production enters the decomposer system as dead organic matter, and the subsequent recycling of C and nutrients are key processes for the functioning of ecosystems and the delivery of ecosystem goods and services. Although climatic and substrate quality controls are reasonably well understood, the functional role of biodiversity for biogeochemical cycles remains elusive. Here we ask how altering litter species diversity affects species-specific decomposition rates and whether large litter-feeding soil animals control the litter diversity–function relationship in a temperate forest ecosystem. We found that decomposition of a given litter species changed greatly in the presence of litters from other cooccurring species despite unaltered climatic conditions and litter chemistry. Most importantly, soil fauna determined the magnitude and direction of litter diversity effects. Our data show that litter species richness and soil fauna interactively determine rates of decomposition in a temperate forest, suggesting a combination of bottom-up and top-down controls of litter diversity effects on ecosystem C and nutrient cycling. These results provide evidence that, in ecosystems supporting a well developed soil macrofauna community, animal activity plays a fundamental role for altered decomposition in response to changing litter diversity, which in turn has important implications for biogeochemical cycles and the long-term functioning of ecosystems with ongoing biodiversity loss. PMID:15671172

  13. THE NATIONAL PLANT GERMPLASM SYSTEM'S SUNFLOWER COLLECTION: GENETIC DIVERSITY FOR DEVELOPING COUNTRIES

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The United States' National Plant Germplasm System's (NPGS) sunflower collection is curated at the North Central Regional Plant Introduction Station (NCRPIS) in Ames, Iowa (USA). The NPGS sunflower collection is a diverse assemblage of 3787 accessions (1624 cultivated Helianthus annuus accessions, ...

  14. Plant diversity differs between young and old mesic meadows in a central European low mountain region

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Gunnar Waesch; Thomas Becker

    2009-01-01

    Effects of habitat age on species diversity are an important issue in plant conservation. However, effects of habitat age on mesic meadows are poorly investigated. Here we compare plant species richness between old mesic meadows (>150 years) and young mesic meadows (40–60 years) in a low mountain region (Thuringian Forest, Germany). Species richness and species traits were determined in 20

  15. NORTHEASTERN NATURALIST2002 9(3):267284 ANT DIVERSITY IN PITCHER-PLANT BOGS

    E-print Network

    Gotelli, Nicholas J.

    NORTHEASTERN NATURALIST2002 9(3):267­284 ANT DIVERSITY IN PITCHER-PLANT BOGS OF MASSACHUSETTS AARON the first systematic inventory of ant species richness in pitcher-plant bogs of Massachusetts. Twenty-six species were collected in 18 bogs during 1999 and 2000. We collected the bog-specialist Myrmica lobifrons

  16. The impact of genomic approaches on our understanding of diversity and taxonomy of plant pathogenic bacteria.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Our understanding of the diversity of bacterial plant pathogens has changed dramatically over the past 100 years. Initially it was thought that each newly described disease was caused by a distinct plant pathogen species. Later, similarities in the physiology of these pathogens as well as inadequate...

  17. Effects of habitat area, isolation, and landscape diversity on plant species richness of calcareous grasslands

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Jochen Krauss; Alexandra-Maria Klein; Ingolf Steffan-Dewenter; Teja Tscharntke

    2004-01-01

    Calcareous grasslands harbour a high biodiversity, but are highly fragmented and endangered in central Europe. We tested the relative importance of habitat area, habitat isolation, and landscape diversity for species richness of vascular plants. Plants were recorded on 31 calcareous grasslands in the vicinity of the city of Göttingen (Germany) and were divided into habitat specialist and generalist species. We

  18. The Influence of Tropical Plant Diversity and Composition on Soil Microbial Communities

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Karen M. Carney; Pamela A. Matson

    2006-01-01

    There is growing interest in understanding the linkages between above- and belowground communities, and very little is known about these linkages in tropical systems. Using an experimental site at La Selva Biological Station, Costa Rica, we examined whether plant diversity, plant community composition, and season influenced microbial communities. We also determined whether soil characteristics were related to differences in microbial

  19. Resource Abundance and Insect Herbivore Diversity on Woody Fabaceous Desert Plants

    Microsoft Academic Search

    EVELYN SODRE DE ALCKMIN; PETER WILFRID; NEIL STANLEY COBB

    2000-01-01

    This study addresses four hypotheses that may account for differences in the number of insect herbivore species among plant species. These hypotheses are based on the assumption that insect diversity is a function of the number, quantity, and distribution of plant resources used by herbivores. The study investigated predictions that herbivore species richness will increase as a function of increasing

  20. A non-stationary spatial generalized linear mixed model approach for studying plant diversity

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Anandamayee Majumdar; Corinna Gries; Jason Walker

    2011-01-01

    We analyze the multivariate spatial distribution of plant species diversity, distributed across three ecologically distinct land uses, the urban residential, urban non-residential, and desert. We model these data using a spatial generalized linear mixed model. Here plant species counts are assumed to be correlated within and among the spatial locations. We implement this model across the Phoenix metropolis and surrounding

  1. Strategies to Enhance Plant Structure and Diversity in Crested Wheatgrass Seedings

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Mike Pellant; Cindy R. Lysne

    2005-01-01

    Crested wheatgrass (Agropyron cristatum sensu amplo (L.) Gaertn.) is an introduced, caespitose grass that has been seeded on millions of acres of Western rangelands. In some areas, crested wheatgrass seedings overlap with critical sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus; C. minimus) habitat, raising the question of how plant diversity might be restored in these closed plant communities. A three-step process is described to

  2. Effects of grassland plant species diversity on soil animal food web components

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Alexandru Milcu; Stephan Partsch; Stefan Scheu

    To investigate the feedback of the plant community to the soil food web we set up a greenhouse experiment manipulating both (1) the diversity of a model grassland community, consisting of 43 common plant species of a Central European Arrhenatherion grassland following \\

  3. Genetic diversity and domestication origin of tea plant Camellia taliensis (Theaceae) as revealed by microsatellite markers

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Tea is one of the most popular beverages in the world. Many species in the Thea section of the Camellia genus can be processed for drinking and have been domesticated. However, few investigations have focused on the genetic consequence of domestication and geographic origin of landraces on tea plants using credible wild and planted populations of a single species. Here, C. taliensis provides us with a unique opportunity to explore these issues. Results Fourteen nuclear microsatellite loci were employed to determine the genetic diversity and domestication origin of C. taliensis, which were represented by 587 individuals from 25 wild, planted and recently domesticated populations. C. taliensis showed a moderate high level of overall genetic diversity. The greater reduction of genetic diversity and stronger genetic drift were detected in the wild group than in the recently domesticated group, indicating the loss of genetic diversity of wild populations due to overexploitation and habitat fragmentation. Instead of the endangered wild trees, recently domesticated individuals were used to compare with the planted trees for detecting the genetic consequence of domestication. A little and non-significant reduction in genetic diversity was found during domestication. The long life cycle, selection for leaf traits and gene flow between populations will delay the emergence of bottleneck in planted trees. Both phylogenetic and assignment analyses suggested that planted trees may have been domesticated from the adjacent central forest of western Yunnan and dispersed artificially to distant places. Conclusions This study contributes to the knowledge about levels and distribution of genetic diversity of C. taliensis and provides new insights into genetic consequence of domestication and geographic origin of planted trees of this species. As an endemic tea source plant, wild, planted and recently domesticated C. taliensis trees should all be protected for their unique genetic characteristics, which are valuable for tea breeding. PMID:24405939

  4. Plant Diversity in Live Fences and Pastures, Two Examples from the Mexican Humid Tropics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ruiz-Guerra, Betsabé; Rosas, Noé Velázquez; López-Acosta, Juan Carlos

    2014-09-01

    This study analyzes the potential uses of live fences and pastures as reservoirs of plant diversity for two regions with different management histories, Los Tuxtlas (LT) and Uxpanapa (UX), Veracruz, México. We studied two habitats, live fences and pastures, analyzed their species richness, diversity, structure and plant composition and classified species according to plant regeneration modes (light-demanding and shade tolerant), seed dispersal syndrome and their local uses. We recorded 62 species of trees at LT and 48 at UX. Live fences were more diverse than pastures in both regions. The LT site showed to analyze the relationship a higher diversity of plants in regeneration stages than the one at UX. However, UX had higher diversity of adult plants in the pastures than LT. Composition and structure of live fences were different between regions, as well as within live fences and pastures, 53 % of species were light-demanding and 40 % were shade tolerant; 70 % of the species were dispersed by birds. Differences between sites are associated with the modifications in live fences structure, which changed according to managerial practices and the use of local species; this may influence plant regeneration modes as well as the visits of avian dispersal agents. In LT, all species found in live fences were useful to humans, whereas in UX, less than half were used by the local population. Our results underline the importance of live fences and isolated trees in pasture habitats as potential sites to host native and useful species from tropical rain forests in livestock landscapes.

  5. Effect of Two Plant Species, Flax (Linum usitatissinumL.) and Tomato (Lycopersicon esculentumMill.), on the Diversity of Soilborne Populations of Fluorescent Pseudomonads

    Microsoft Academic Search

    PHILIPPE LEMANCEAU; THERESE CORBERAND; LOUIS GARDAN; XAVIER LATOUR; GISELE LAGUERRE; JEAN-MARC BOEUFGRAS

    1995-01-01

    Suppression of soilborne disease byfluorescent pseudomonads may be inconsistent. Inefficient root coloni- zationbytheintroducedbacteriaisoftenresponsibleforthisinconsistency.Tobetterunderstandthebacterial traits involved in root colonization, the effect of two plant species, flax (Linum usitatissinum L.) and tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill.), on the diversity of soilborne populations was assessed. Fluorescent pseudo- monads were isolated from an uncultivated soil and from rhizosphere, rhizoplane, and root tissue offlax and tomato

  6. A PCR-denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis approach to assess Fusarium diversity in asparagus.

    PubMed

    Yergeau, E; Filion, M; Vujanovic, V; St-Arnaud, M

    2005-02-01

    In North America, asparagus (Asparagus officinalis) production suffers from a crown and root rot disease mainly caused by Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. asparagi and F. proliferatum. Many other Fusarium species are also found in asparagus fields, whereas accurate detection and identification of these organisms, especially when processing numerous samples, is usually difficult and time consuming. In this study, a PCR-denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) method was developed to assess Fusarium species diversity in asparagus plant samples. Fusarium-specific PCR primers targeting a partial region of the translation elongation factor-1 alpha (EF-1 alpha) gene were designed, and their specificity was tested against genomic DNA extracted from a large collection of closely and distantly related organisms isolated from multiple environments. Amplicons of 450 bp were obtained from all Fusarium isolates, while no PCR product was obtained from non-Fusarium organisms. The ability of DGGE to discriminate between Fusarium taxa was tested over 19 different Fusarium species represented by 39 isolates, including most species previously reported from asparagus fields worldwide. The technique was effective to visually discriminate between the majority of Fusarium species and/or isolates tested in pure culture, while a further sequencing step permitted to distinguish between the few species showing similar migration patterns. Total genomic DNA was extracted from field-grown asparagus plants naturally infested with different Fusarium species, submitted to PCR amplification, DGGE analysis and sequencing. The two to four bands observed for each plant sample were all affiliated with F. oxysporum, F. proliferatum or F. solani, clearly supporting the reliability, sensitivity and specificity of this approach for the study of Fusarium diversity from asparagus plants samples. PMID:15590089

  7. Effects of plant species richness and evenness on soil microbial community diversity and function

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Eric G. Lamb; Nabla Kennedy; Steven D. Siciliano

    2011-01-01

    Understanding the links between plant diversity and soil communities is critical to disentangling the mechanisms by which\\u000a plant communities modulate ecosystem function. Experimental plant communities varying in species richness, evenness, and density\\u000a were established using a response surface design and soil community properties including bacterial and archaeal abundance,\\u000a richness, and evenness were measured. The potential to perform a representative soil

  8. Non-native plants add to the British flora without negative consequences for native diversity.

    PubMed

    Thomas, Chris D; Palmer, G

    2015-04-01

    Plants are commonly listed as invasive species, presuming that they cause harm at both global and regional scales. Approximately 40% of all species listed as invasive within Britain are plants. However, invasive plants are rarely linked to the national or global extinction of native plant species. The possible explanation is that competitive exclusion takes place slowly and that invasive plants will eventually eliminate native species (the "time-to-exclusion hypothesis"). Using the extensive British Countryside Survey Data, we find that changes to plant occurrence and cover between 1990 and 2007 at 479 British sites do not differ between native and non-native plant species. More than 80% of the plant species that are widespread enough to be sampled are native species; hence, total cover changes have been dominated by native species (total cover increases by native species are more than nine times greater than those by non-native species). This implies that factors other than plant "invasions" are the key drivers of vegetation change. We also find that the diversity of native species is increasing in locations where the diversity of non-native species is increasing, suggesting that high diversities of native and non-native plant species are compatible with one another. We reject the time-to-exclusion hypothesis as the reason why extinctions have not been observed and suggest that non-native plant species are not a threat to floral diversity in Britain. Further research is needed in island-like environments, but we question whether it is appropriate that more than three-quarters of taxa listed globally as invasive species are plants. PMID:25831537

  9. Patterns of diversity in plant and soil microbial communities along a productivity gradient in a Michigan old-field

    Microsoft Academic Search

    L. C. Broughton; K. L. Gross

    2000-01-01

    The relationship between plant diversity and productivity has received much attention in ecology, but the relationship of these factors to soil microbial communities has been little explored. The carbon resources that support soil microbial communities are primarily derived from plants, so it is likely that the soil microbial community should respond to changes in plant diversity or productivity, particularly if

  10. Artisanal fishers’ ethnobotany: from plant diversity use to agrobiodiversity management

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Nivaldo Peroni; Alpina Begossi; Natalia Hanazaki

    2008-01-01

    Artisanal fishers interact with plants in many ways, and with different intensities. In spite of being characterized by fisheries,\\u000a Caiçaras use plants with varied degrees of management, since the less intensive management actions, extraction of forest products,\\u000a until intensively management actions through the cultivation of the agrobiodiversity. This study presents the results of different\\u000a research projects and includes the North

  11. Plant glutathione biosynthesis: diversity in biochemical regulation and reaction products.

    PubMed

    Galant, Ashley; Preuss, Mary L; Cameron, Jeffrey C; Jez, Joseph M

    2011-01-01

    In plants, exposure to temperature extremes, heavy metal-contaminated soils, drought, air pollutants, and pathogens results in the generation of reactive oxygen species that alter the intracellular redox environment, which in turn influences signaling pathways and cell fate. As part of their response to these stresses, plants produce glutathione. Glutathione acts as an anti-oxidant by quenching reactive oxygen species, and is involved in the ascorbate-glutathione cycle that eliminates damaging peroxides. Plants also use glutathione for the detoxification of xenobiotics, herbicides, air pollutants (sulfur dioxide and ozone), and toxic heavy metals. Two enzymes catalyze glutathione synthesis: glutamate-cysteine ligase, and glutathione synthetase. Glutathione is a ubiquitous protective compound in plants, but the structural and functional details of the proteins that synthesize it, as well as the potential biochemical mechanisms of their regulation, have only begun to be explored. As discussed here, the core reactions of glutathione synthesis are conserved across various organisms, but plants have diversified both the regulatory mechanisms that control its synthesis and the range of products derived from this pathway. Understanding the molecular basis of glutathione biosynthesis and its regulation will expand our knowledge of this component in the plant stress response network. PMID:22645536

  12. Assessment of genetic diversity in Indian rice germplasm (Oryza sativa L.): use of random versus trait-linked microsatellite markers.

    PubMed

    Yadav, Sheel; Singh, Ashutosh; Singh, M R; Goel, Nitika; Vinod, K K; Mohapatra, T; Singh, A K

    2013-12-01

    Assessment of genetic diversity in a crop germplasm is a vital part of plant breeding. DNA markers such as microsatellite or simple sequence repeat markers have been widely used to estimate the genetic diversity in rice. The present study was carried out to decipher the pattern of genetic diversity in terms of both phenotypic and genotypic variability, and to assess the efficiency of random vis-á-vis QTL linked/gene based simple sequence repeat markers in diversity estimation. A set of 88 rice accessions that included landraces, farmer's varieties and popular Basmati lines were evaluated for agronomic traits and molecular diversity. The random set of SSR markers included 50 diversity panel markers developed under IRRI's Generation Challenge Programme (GCP) and the trait-linked/gene based markers comprised of 50 SSR markers reportedly linked to yield and related components. For agronomic traits, significant variability was observed, ranging between the maximum for grains/panicle and the minimum for panicle length. The molecular diversity based grouping indicated that varieties from a common centre were genetically similar, with few exceptions. The trait-linked markers gave an average genetic dissimilarity of 0.45 as against that of 0.37 by random markers, along with an average polymorphic information constant value of 0.48 and 0.41 respectively. The correlation between the kinship matrix generated by trait-linked markers and the phenotype based distance matrix (0.29) was higher than that of random markers (0.19). This establishes the robustness of trait-linked markers over random markers in estimating genetic diversity of rice germplasm. PMID:24371175

  13. Experimental warming causes rapid loss of plant diversity in New England salt marshes.

    PubMed

    Gedan, Keryn B; Bertness, Mark D

    2009-08-01

    Anthropogenic climate change is predicted to cause widespread biodiversity loss due to shifts in species' distributions, but these predictions rarely incorporate ecological associations such as zonation. Here, we predict the decline of a diverse assemblage of mid-latitude salt marsh plants, based on an ecosystem warming experiment. In New England salt marshes, a guild of halophytic forbs occupies stressful, waterlogged pannes. At three sites, experimental warming of < 4 degrees C led to diversity declines in pannes and rapid takeover by a competitive dominant, Spartina patens. In Rhode Island, near their southern range limit, pannes were more sensitive to warming than farther north, and panne area also declined in control plots over the three-season experiment. These results suggest that warming will rapidly reduce plant diversity in New England salt marshes by eliminating a high diversity zone. Biodiversity in zoned ecosystems may be more affected by climate-driven shifts in zonation than by individual species' distribution shifts. PMID:19566785

  14. 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

  15. Temporal Changes and Spatial Determinants of Plant Species Diversity and Genetic Variation

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Cornelia Baessler; Stefan Klotz; Walter Durka

    \\u000a Intensification of agricultural land use during the last century, combined with an increasing level of agrochemicals, has\\u000a resulted in a decline of both habitat diversity and quality and to simplification and homogenization of Central Europe landscapes.\\u000a For three agricultural landscapes in Central Germany we investigated (1) the influence of historical and current land-use\\u000a and landscape structure on plant species diversity

  16. Emerging roles for diverse intramembrane proteases in plant biology.

    PubMed

    Adam, Zach

    2013-12-01

    Progress in the field of regulated intramembrane proteolysis (RIP) in recent years has made its impact on plant biology as well. Although this field within plant research is still in its infancy, some interesting observations have started to emerge. Gene encoding orthologs of rhomboid proteases, site-2 proteases (S2P), presenilin/?-secretases, and signal peptide peptidases are found in plant genomes and some of these gene products were identified in different plant cell membranes. The lack of chloroplast-located rhomboid proteases was associated with reduced fertility and aberrations in flower morphology. Mutations in homologues of S2P resulted in chlorophyll deficiency and impaired chloroplast development. An S2P was also implicated in the response to ER stress through cleavage of ER-membrane bZIP transcription factors, allowing their migration to the nucleus and activation of the transcription of BiP chaperones. Other membrane-bound transcription factors of the NAC and PHD families were also demonstrated to undergo RIP and relocalization to the nucleus. These and other new data are expected to shed more light on the roles of intramembrane proteases in plant biology in the future. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Intramembrane Proteases. PMID:24099011

  17. Effects of Plant Biomass, Plant Diversity, and Water Content on Bacterial Communities in Soil Lysimeters: Implications for the Determinants of Bacterial Diversity? †

    PubMed Central

    Zul, Delita; Denzel, Sabine; Kotz, Andrea; Overmann, Jörg

    2007-01-01

    Soils may comprise tens of thousands to millions of bacterial species. It is still unclear whether this high level of diversity is governed by functional redundancy or by a multitude of ecological niches. In order to address this question, we analyzed the reproducibility of bacterial community composition after different experimental manipulations. Soil lysimeters were planted with four different types of plant communities, and the water content was adjusted. Group-specific phylogenetic fingerprinting by PCR-denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis revealed clear differences in the composition of Alphaproteobacteria, Betaproteobacteria, Bacteroidetes, Chloroflexi, Planctomycetes, and Verrucomicrobia populations in soils without plants compared to that of populations in planted soils, whereas no influence of plant species composition on bacterial diversity could be discerned. These results indicate that the presence of higher plant species affects the species composition of bacterial groups in a reproducible manner and even outside of the rhizosphere. In contrast, the environmental factors tested did not affect the composition of Acidobacteria, Actinobacteria, Archaea, and Firmicutes populations. One-third (52 out of 160) of the sequence types were found to be specifically and reproducibly associated with the absence or presence of plants. Unexpectedly, this was also true for numerous minor constituents of the soil bacterial assemblage. Subsequently, one of the low-abundance phylotypes (beta10) was selected for studying the interdependence under particular experimental conditions and the underlying causes in more detail. This so-far-uncultured phylotype of the Betaproteobacteria species represented up to 0.18% of all bacterial cells in planted lysimeters compared to 0.017% in unplanted systems. A cultured representative of this phylotype exhibited high physiological flexibility and was capable of utilizing major constituents of root exudates. Our results suggest that the bacterial species composition in soil is determined to a significant extent by abiotic and biotic factors, rather than by mere chance, thereby reflecting a multitude of distinct ecological niches. PMID:17873072

  18. Analysis of adaptive ribosomal gene diversity in wild plant populations from contrasting climatic environments.

    PubMed

    Shapter, Frances M; Fitzgerald, Timothy L; Waters, Daniel L E; McDonald, Stuart; Chivers, Ian H; Nevo, Eviatar; Henry, Robert

    2012-06-01

    Plant populations may contain variation that reflects adaptation to local environmental conditions. Clues to adaptive evolution of plants may be found in the genomes of species growing in diverse environments or across steep environmental gradients, and under stress. We have examined populations of wild relatives of barley and rice across diverse environmental gradients. Greater diversity, in a nuclear biotic stress defense gene and in chloroplast genes, was found in the more stressed, hotter and dryer environments. This may reflect the greater heterogeneity of these environments. Adaptation of plants to different abiotic stresses (temperatures and levels of water availability) may also require significant adaptation to the different biotic (pest and disease) pressures in these environments. PMID:22580709

  19. Using Phylogenetic, Functional and Trait Diversity to Understand Patterns of Plant Community Productivity

    PubMed Central

    Cadotte, Marc W.; Cavender-Bares, Jeannine; Tilman, David; Oakley, Todd H.

    2009-01-01

    Background Two decades of research showing that increasing plant diversity results in greater community productivity has been predicated on greater functional diversity allowing access to more of the total available resources. Thus, understanding phenotypic attributes that allow species to partition resources is fundamentally important to explaining diversity-productivity relationships. Methodology/Principal Findings Here we use data from a long-term experiment (Cedar Creek, MN) and compare the extent to which productivity is explained by seven types of community metrics of functional variation: 1) species richness, 2) variation in 10 individual traits, 3) functional group richness, 4) a distance-based measure of functional diversity, 5) a hierarchical multivariate clustering method, 6) a nonmetric multidimensional scaling approach, and 7) a phylogenetic diversity measure, summing phylogenetic branch lengths connecting community members together and may be a surrogate for ecological differences. Although most of these diversity measures provided significant explanations of variation in productivity, the presence of a nitrogen fixer and phylogenetic diversity were the two best explanatory variables. Further, a statistical model that included the presence of a nitrogen fixer, seed weight and phylogenetic diversity was a better explanation of community productivity than other models. Conclusions Evolutionary relationships among species appear to explain patterns of grassland productivity. Further, these results reveal that functional differences among species involve a complex suite of traits and that perhaps phylogenetic relationships provide a better measure of the diversity among species that contributes to productivity than individual or small groups of traits. PMID:19479086

  20. A phylogenetic perspective on the distribution of plant diversity

    PubMed Central

    Donoghue, Michael J.

    2008-01-01

    Phylogenetic studies are revealing that major ecological niches are more conserved through evolutionary history than expected, implying that adaptations to major climate changes have not readily been accomplished in all lineages. Phylogenetic niche conservatism has important consequences for the assembly of both local communities and the regional species pools from which these are drawn. If corridors for movement are available, newly emerging environments will tend to be filled by species that filter in from areas in which the relevant adaptations have already evolved, as opposed to being filled by in situ evolution of these adaptations. Examples include intercontinental disjunctions of tropical plants, the spread of plant lineages around the Northern Hemisphere after the evolution of cold tolerance, and the radiation of northern alpine plants into the Andes. These observations highlight the role of phylogenetic knowledge and historical biogeography in explanations of global biodiversity patterns. They also have implications for the future of biodiversity. PMID:18695216

  1. Vascular plant abundance and diversity in an alpine heath under observed and simulated global change.

    PubMed

    Alatalo, Juha M; Little, Chelsea J; Jägerbrand, Annika K; Molau, Ulf

    2015-01-01

    Global change is predicted to cause shifts in species distributions and biodiversity in arctic tundra. We applied factorial warming and nutrient manipulation to a nutrient and species poor alpine/arctic heath community for seven years. Vascular plant abundance in control plots increased by 31%. There were also notable changes in cover in the nutrient and combined nutrient and warming treatments, with deciduous and evergreen shrubs declining, grasses overgrowing these plots. Sedge abundance initially increased significantly with nutrient amendment and then declined, going below initial values in the combined nutrient and warming treatment. Nutrient addition resulted in a change in dominance hierarchy from deciduous shrubs to grasses. We found significant declines in vascular plant diversity and evenness in the warming treatment and a decline in diversity in the combined warming and nutrient addition treatment, while nutrient addition caused a decline in species richness. The results give some experimental support that species poor plant communities with low diversity may be more vulnerable to loss of species diversity than communities with higher initial diversity. The projected increase in nutrient deposition and warming may therefore have negative impacts on ecosystem processes, functioning and services due to loss of species diversity in an already impoverished environment. PMID:25950370

  2. Biosynthesis of Plant Volatiles: Nature's Diversity and Ingenuity

    NSDL National Science Digital Library

    Eran Pichersky (University of Michigan; Department of Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology)

    2006-02-10

    Plant volatiles (PVs) are lipophilic molecules with high vapor pressure that serve various ecological roles. The synthesis of PVs involves the removal of hydrophilic moieties and oxidation/hydroxylation, reduction, methylation, and acylation reactions. Some PV biosynthetic enzymes produce multiple products from a single substrate or act on multiple substrates. Genes for PV biosynthesis evolve by duplication of genes that direct other aspects of plant metabolism; these duplicated genes then diverge from each other over time. Changes in the preferred substrate or resultant product of PV enzymes may occur through minimal changes of critical residues. Convergent evolution is often responsible for the ability of distally related species to synthesize the same volatile.

  3. The “Hidden Diversity” of Medicinal Plants in Northeastern Brazil: Diagnosis and Prospects for Conservation and Biological Prospecting

    PubMed Central

    Cavalcanti, Deyvson Rodrigues; Albuquerque, Ulysses Paulino

    2013-01-01

    Increases in ethnobotanical studies and knowledge in recent decades have led to a greater and more accurate interpretation of the overall patterns related to the use of medicinal plants, allowing for a clear identification of some ecological and cultural phenomena. “Hidden diversity” of medicinal plants refers in the present study to the existence of several species of medicinal plants known by the same vernacular name in a given region. Although this phenomenon has previously been observed in a localized and sporadic manner, its full dimensions have not yet been established. In the present study, we sought to assess the hidden diversity of medicinal plants in northeastern Brazil based on the ethnospecies catalogued by local studies. The results indicate that there are an average of at least 2.78 different species per cataloged ethnospecies in the region. Phylogenetic proximity and its attendant morphological similarity favor the interchangeable use of these species, resulting in serious ecological and sanitary implications as well as a wide range of options for conservation and bioprospecting. PMID:24228056

  4. The "hidden diversity" of medicinal plants in northeastern Brazil: diagnosis and prospects for conservation and biological prospecting.

    PubMed

    Cavalcanti, Deyvson Rodrigues; Albuquerque, Ulysses Paulino

    2013-01-01

    Increases in ethnobotanical studies and knowledge in recent decades have led to a greater and more accurate interpretation of the overall patterns related to the use of medicinal plants, allowing for a clear identification of some ecological and cultural phenomena. "Hidden diversity" of medicinal plants refers in the present study to the existence of several species of medicinal plants known by the same vernacular name in a given region. Although this phenomenon has previously been observed in a localized and sporadic manner, its full dimensions have not yet been established. In the present study, we sought to assess the hidden diversity of medicinal plants in northeastern Brazil based on the ethnospecies catalogued by local studies. The results indicate that there are an average of at least 2.78 different species per cataloged ethnospecies in the region. Phylogenetic proximity and its attendant morphological similarity favor the interchangeable use of these species, resulting in serious ecological and sanitary implications as well as a wide range of options for conservation and bioprospecting. PMID:24228056

  5. Assessment Matters in Higher Education: Choosing and Using Diverse Approaches.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brown, Sally, Ed.; Glasner, Angela, Ed.

    This book presents 16 papers on assessment in higher education grouped into four sections on: first, systems approaches to assessment; second, the effectiveness of innovative assessment; third, assessing practice; and fourth, autonomous assessment. The included papers are: (1) "Institutional Strategies for Assessment" (Sally Brown); (2)…

  6. Dominant species, rather than diversity, regulates temporal stability of plant communities.

    PubMed

    Sasaki, Takehiro; Lauenroth, William K

    2011-07-01

    A growing body of empirical evidence suggests that the temporal stability of communities typically increases with diversity. The counterview to this is that dominant species, rather than diversity itself, might regulate temporal stability. However, empirical studies that have explicitly examined the relative importance of diversity and dominant species in maintaining community stability have yielded few clear-cut patterns. Here, using a long-term data set, we examined the relative importance of changes in diversity components and dominance hierarchy following the removal of a dominant C4 grass, Bouteloua gracilis, in stabilizing plant communities. We also examined the relationships between the variables of diversity and dominance hierarchy and the statistical components of temporal stability. We found a significant negative relationship between temporal stability and species richness, number of rare species, and relative abundance of rare species, whereas a significant positive relationship existed between temporal stability and relative abundance of the dominant species. Variances and covariances summed over all species significantly increased with increasing species richness, whereas they significantly decreased with increasing relative abundance of dominant species. We showed that temporal stability in a shortgrass steppe plant community was controlled by dominant species rather than by diversity itself. The generality of diversity-stability relationships might be restricted by the dynamics of dominant species, especially when they have characteristics that contribute to stability in highly stochastic systems. A clear implication is that dominance hierarchies and their changes might be among the most important ecological components to consider in managing communities to maintain ecosystem functioning. PMID:21279386

  7. Impacts of plant diversity on biomass production increase through time because of species complementarity.

    PubMed

    Cardinale, Bradley J; Wright, Justin P; Cadotte, Marc W; Carroll, Ian T; Hector, Andy; Srivastava, Diane S; Loreau, Michel; Weis, Jerome J

    2007-11-13

    Accelerating rates of species extinction have prompted a growing number of researchers to manipulate the richness of various groups of organisms and examine how this aspect of diversity impacts ecological processes that control the functioning of ecosystems. We summarize the results of 44 experiments that have manipulated the richness of plants to examine how plant diversity affects the production of biomass. We show that mixtures of species produce an average of 1.7 times more biomass than species monocultures and are more productive than the average monoculture in 79% of all experiments. However, in only 12% of all experiments do diverse polycultures achieve greater biomass than their single most productive species. Previously, a positive net effect of diversity that is no greater than the most productive species has been interpreted as evidence for selection effects, which occur when diversity maximizes the chance that highly productive species will be included in and ultimately dominate the biomass of polycultures. Contrary to this, we show that although productive species do indeed contribute to diversity effects, these contributions are equaled or exceeded by species complementarity, where biomass is augmented by biological processes that involve multiple species. Importantly, both the net effect of diversity and the probability of polycultures being more productive than their most productive species increases through time, because the magnitude of complementarity increases as experiments are run longer. Our results suggest that experiments to date have, if anything, underestimated the impacts of species extinction on the productivity of ecosystems. PMID:17991772

  8. Impacts of plant diversity on biomass production increase through time because of species complementarity

    PubMed Central

    Cardinale, Bradley J.; Wright, Justin P.; Cadotte, Marc W.; Carroll, Ian T.; Hector, Andy; Srivastava, Diane S.; Loreau, Michel; Weis, Jerome J.

    2007-01-01

    Accelerating rates of species extinction have prompted a growing number of researchers to manipulate the richness of various groups of organisms and examine how this aspect of diversity impacts ecological processes that control the functioning of ecosystems. We summarize the results of 44 experiments that have manipulated the richness of plants to examine how plant diversity affects the production of biomass. We show that mixtures of species produce an average of 1.7 times more biomass than species monocultures and are more productive than the average monoculture in 79% of all experiments. However, in only 12% of all experiments do diverse polycultures achieve greater biomass than their single most productive species. Previously, a positive net effect of diversity that is no greater than the most productive species has been interpreted as evidence for selection effects, which occur when diversity maximizes the chance that highly productive species will be included in and ultimately dominate the biomass of polycultures. Contrary to this, we show that although productive species do indeed contribute to diversity effects, these contributions are equaled or exceeded by species complementarity, where biomass is augmented by biological processes that involve multiple species. Importantly, both the net effect of diversity and the probability of polycultures being more productive than their most productive species increases through time, because the magnitude of complementarity increases as experiments are run longer. Our results suggest that experiments to date have, if anything, underestimated the impacts of species extinction on the productivity of ecosystems. PMID:17991772

  9. MORPHOLOGICAL AND PHYSIOLOGICAL INTERACTIONS IN DIVERSE PLANT COMMUNITIES

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Morphological and physiological interactions among plants in multi-species forage mixtures affect responses to environmental stresses. White clover growing under drought stress in a five-species mixture which included a deep-rooted forb had greater transpiration rates and higher leaf water potential...

  10. INCREASING NATIVE PLANT DIVERSITY IN CRESTED WHEATGRASS STANDS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Crested wheatgrass was introduced to North America to improve degraded rangelands and has proven to be a successful revegetation species due to its ease of establishment, strong competitive ability, and grazing tolerance. However, crested wheatgrass may form monotypic stands with low plant diversit...

  11. Superpáramo plant species diversity and phytogeography in Ecuador

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Petr Sklená?; Henrik Balslev

    2005-01-01

    In 18 superpáramo sites in Ecuador we found 388 species of vascular plants belonging to 146 genera and 52 families, making the Ecuadorian superpáramo flora richer in species than that of Venezuela and that of Colombia which appears to have fewer species although the number remains uncertain. The most species rich families were Asteraceae (83 species) and Poaceae (49) which

  12. Selection of plant heterokaryons from diverse origins by flow cytometry

    Microsoft Academic Search

    N. Hammatt; A. Lister; N. W. Blackhall; J. Gartland; T. K. Ghose; D. M. Gilmour; J. B. Power; M. R. Davey; E. C. Cocking

    1990-01-01

    Summary Protoplasts from a range of tissue sources for 21 species within the plant familiesCompositae, Cruciferae, Leguminosae, andSolanaceae were fused electrically to produce heterokaryons. Protoplasts were labelled by application of green fluorescein fluorescence to one parental protoplast population, and the red fluorescence of either naturally occurring chlorophyll or of rhodamine exogenously applied to the other parental type. Heterokaryon populations were

  13. High plant diversity of lowland rainforest vestiges in eastern Madagascar

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Nicolas Dumetz

    1999-01-01

    Based on cartography, floristic inventory and vegetation analysis in the north and south of the Eastern Domain of Madagascar we identified three original tropical rainforest types which are among the world's most biodiverse known sites for plants: the littoral forest on sand, the lowland forest on gneiss and the lowland forest on basalt. Floristic and structural comparisons were conducted on

  14. Relationships between Plant Diversity and the Abundance and ?-Diversity of Predatory Ground Beetles (Coleoptera: Carabidae) in a Mature Asian Temperate Forest Ecosystem

    PubMed Central

    Zou, Yi; Sang, Weiguo; Bai, Fan; Axmacher, Jan Christoph

    2013-01-01

    A positive relationship between plant diversity and both abundance and diversity of predatory arthropods is postulated by the Enemies Hypothesis, a central ecological top-down control hypothesis. It has been supported by experimental studies and investigations of agricultural and grassland ecosystems, while evidence from more complex mature forest ecosystems is limited. Our study was conducted on Changbai Mountain in one of the last remaining large pristine temperate forest environments in China. We used predatory ground beetles (Coleoptera: Carabidae) as target taxon to establish the relationship between phytodiversity and their activity abundance and diversity. Results showed that elevation was the only variable included in both models predicting carabid activity abundance and ?-diversity. Shrub diversity was negatively and herb diversity positively correlated with beetle abundance, while shrub diversity was positively correlated with beetle ?-diversity. Within the different forest types, a negative relationship between plant diversity and carabid activity abundance was observed, which stands in direct contrast to the Enemies Hypothesis. Furthermore, plant species density did not predict carabid ?-diversity. In addition, the density of herbs, which is commonly believed to influence carabid movement, had little impact on the beetle activity abundance recorded on Changbai Mountain. Our study indicates that in a relatively large and heterogeneous mature forest area, relationships between plant and carabid diversity are driven by variations in environmental factors linked with altitudinal change. In addition, traditional top-down control theories that are suitable in explaining diversity patterns in ecosystems of low diversity appear to play a much less pronounced role in highly complex forest ecosystems. PMID:24376582

  15. Rapid compositional change and significant loss of plant species diversity among Triassic-Jurassic palynofloras in East Greenland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mander, Luke; Kürschner, Wolfram; McElwain, Jennifer

    2010-05-01

    The Triassic-Jurassic (Tr-J; 200Ma) transition coincides with the eruption of massive flood basalts associated with the opening of the Atlantic Ocean. This is thought to have lead to a fourfold increase in palaeoatmospheric carbon dioxide, a consequent rise in global temperatures of between 3 and 6 degrees Celsius, and a rise in atmospheric pollutants such as sulphur dioxide. Recent work has employed either plant macrofossils (mostly leaves) or sporomorphs (pollen and spores) to reconstruct the response of terrestrial vegetation to this episode of major environmental change. Investigations of the macrofossil record at Astartekloft in East Greenland indicate a rapid loss of plant diversity in the Late Rhaetian, culminating in an 80% species turnover at the Tr-J boundary interval. However, evidence for such catastrophic diversity loss is conspicuously absent from the sporomorph record. This fossil group indicates that the Tr-J boundary interval in central and northwest Europe is characterized by compositional change and a transient shift from gymnosperm forests to fern-dominated vegetation. In order to address this uncertainty regarding Tr-J vegetation change according to macrofossils versus sporomorphs, we present an analysis of sporomorph diversity and compositional change across the Tr-J at Astartekloft, East Greenland. Sporomorph diversity was estimated using individual and sample-based rarefaction techniques, and compositional differences between sporomorph samples were assessed using non-metric multidimensional scaling. These analyses reveal that sporomorph assemblages from the Tr-J boundary interval at Astartekloft are between 23 and 27% less taxonomically diverse than other Triassic assemblages, and that this interval is characterized by a dramatic shift in the composition of the standing vegetation. These results are statistically significant and are also unrelated to changes in the environment of deposition. These results indicate that the magnitude of plant diversity loss across the Tr-J in East Greenland is apparently greater in the macrofossil record than the sporomorph record. Comparison of these results with taphonomic work on the representation of different groups of plants in macrofossil and sporomorph records at Astartekloft is used to understand this discrepancy.

  16. Vegetation types, dominant compositions, woody plant diversity and stand structure in Trishna Wildlife Sanctuary of Northeast India.

    PubMed

    Majumdar, Koushik; Datta, B K

    2015-03-01

    Present study was carried out to assess the vegetation types, diversity and phytosociological status of woody plants in Trishna Wildlife Sanctuary of Tripura, Northeast India. Vegetation data was derived by 25 line transects (10 m wide and 500 m length, each 0.5 ha size). All woody species at >10 cm gbh (Girth at Breast Height) within each plots were measured and counted. A total of six forest types were classified by cluster analysis using Importance Value Index (IVI) of 289 woody species. Species diversity, forest structure and woody community associations were evaluated and discussed. One way ANOVA revealed significant differences in all species diversity measures and stand structure along the forest types. Distribution of stem density at ten different gbh classes showed reverse J-shaped curves. Population status of woody plants was also examined through grouping of all individuals into four population age stages viz. sapling (<30 cm gbh), adult (> or = 30 - <120 cm gbh), mature (>120 - 210 cm gbh) and old (> or =210 cm). To observe dominant composition and species population trend, IVI of top ten dominant species from all forest types were tabulated. The present study suggested that Trishna Wildlife Sanctuary is an important habitat in Tripura from floristic point of view and it should be conserved on priority basis for remaining wildlife endurances and monitor for forest livelihoods products for sustainable biodiversity conservation in this region. PMID:25895264

  17. Aspen ( Populus tremuloides ) stands and their contribution to plant diversity in a semiarid coniferous landscape

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Tim J. Kuhn; Hugh D. Safford; Bobette E. Jones; Ken W. Tate

    We conducted a field study to determine the relative contributions of aspen (Populus tremuloides), meadow, and conifer communities to local and landscape-level plant species diversity in the Sierra Nevada and southern\\u000a Cascade Range, northeastern California, USA. We surveyed plant assemblages at 30 sites that included adjacent aspen, conifer,\\u000a and meadow communities across a 10,000-km2 region. We statistically investigated patterns in

  18. Size, age and composition: characteristics of plant taxa as diversity predictors of gall-midges (Diptera: Cecidomyiidae).

    PubMed

    Araújo, Walter S

    2011-12-01

    Many hypotheses have been proposed to explain the diversity of gall-midge insects (Diptera: Cecidomyiidae), some of them taking into account plant diversity. This study aims to test the importance of size, age and composition of host plant taxa in the diversity of Cecidomyiidae. For this we used inventories data on the diversity of galling and host plants in Brazil. We found that Asterales, Myrtales and Malpighiales, were the most important orders, with 34, 33 and 25, gall morphotypes, respectively. The most representative host families were Asteraceae (34 morphotypes), Myrtaceae (23) and Fabaceae (22). In general, the order size and the plant family were good predictors of the galling diversity, but not the taxon age. The most diverse host genera for gall-midges were Mikania, Eugenia and Styrax, with 15, 13 and nine galler species, respectively. The size of plant genera showed no significant relationship with the richness of Cecidomyiidae, contrary to the prediction of the plant taxon size hypothesis. The plant genera with the greatest diversity of galling insects are not necessarily those with the greatest number of species. These results indicate that some plant taxa have a high intrinsic richness of galling insects, suggesting that the plant species composition may be equally or more important for the diversity of gall-midges than the size or age of the host taxon. PMID:22208077

  19. Assessing the Effects of Woody Plant Traits on Understory Herbaceous Cover in a Semiarid Rangeland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Belay, Tamrat A.; Moe, Stein R.

    2015-07-01

    The ecological impact of woody plant encroachment in rangeland ecosystems has traditionally been evaluated based on correlation studies between densities of dissimilar woody plants and various ecosystem properties. However, ecosystem properties respond differently to woody plant encroachment because of variations in adaptation of co-occurring woody plants. The objective of this study is to predict the impact of woody plant encroachment on understory herbaceous cover based on analysis of key traits of woody plants. We conducted a vegetation survey in 4 savanna sites in southwestern Ethiopia and compared 9 different key traits of 19 co-occurring woody plants with understory herbaceous cover. Our results show that low understory herbaceous cover is associated with evergreen leaf phenology, shrubby growth form, smaller relative crown-base height and larger relative crown diameter. However, the N2-fixing ability and density of woody plants did not influence the understory herbaceous cover. This shows that traits of individual woody plants can predict the impact of woody plant encroachment on understory herbaceous cover better than density does. The finding improves our ability to accurately predict the impact of woody plant encroachment on various ecosystem properties in highly diverse savanna systems. This plant trait-based approach could be also used as an important management exercise to assess and predict the impact of encroaching woody species in several rangeland ecosystems.

  20. Assessing the effects of woody plant traits on understory herbaceous cover in a semiarid rangeland.

    PubMed

    Belay, Tamrat A; Moe, Stein R

    2015-07-01

    The ecological impact of woody plant encroachment in rangeland ecosystems has traditionally been evaluated based on correlation studies between densities of dissimilar woody plants and various ecosystem properties. However, ecosystem properties respond differently to woody plant encroachment because of variations in adaptation of co-occurring woody plants. The objective of this study is to predict the impact of woody plant encroachment on understory herbaceous cover based on analysis of key traits of woody plants. We conducted a vegetation survey in 4 savanna sites in southwestern Ethiopia and compared 9 different key traits of 19 co-occurring woody plants with understory herbaceous cover. Our results show that low understory herbaceous cover is associated with evergreen leaf phenology, shrubby growth form, smaller relative crown-base height and larger relative crown diameter. However, the N2-fixing ability and density of woody plants did not influence the understory herbaceous cover. This shows that traits of individual woody plants can predict the impact of woody plant encroachment on understory herbaceous cover better than density does. The finding improves our ability to accurately predict the impact of woody plant encroachment on various ecosystem properties in highly diverse savanna systems. This plant trait-based approach could be also used as an important management exercise to assess and predict the impact of encroaching woody species in several rangeland ecosystems. PMID:25860596

  1. Positive correlation between soil bacterial metabolic and plant species diversity and bacterial and fungal diversity in a vegetation succession on Karst

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Xun-Yang He; Ke-Lin Wang; Wei Zhang; Zhi-Hui Chen; Yong-Guan Zhu; Hong-Song Chen

    2008-01-01

    The hypothesis that positive links exist among plant taxonomic diversity, belowground microbial taxonomic and metabolic diversities\\u000a was tested for four secondary vegetation successional stages (tussock (T), shrub (S), secondary forest (SF) and primary forest\\u000a (PF)) in Huanjiang county, SW China. Soil bacterial communities were characterized by DNA fingerprinting and metabolic profiling.\\u000a Along the succession, Shannon diversity indices followed the order

  2. Assessing invasive plant infestation in freshwater wetlands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Torbick, Nathan M.

    Recent shifts in wetland ecosystem management goals have directed efforts toward measuring ecological integrity, rather than only using physical and chemical measures of ecosystems as health indicators. Invasive species pose one of the largest threats to wetlands integrity. Resource managers can benefit from improved methods for identifying invasive plant species, assessing infestation, and monitoring control measures. The utilization of advanced remote sensing tools for species-level mapping has been increasing and techniques need to be explored for identifying species of interest and characterizing infestation. The overarching goal of this research was to develop monitoring technologies to map invasive plants and quantify wetland infestation. The first field-level objective was to characterize absorption and reflectance features and assess processing techniques for separating wetland species. The second field-level objective was to evaluate the abilities of a shape filter to identify wetland invasive plant species. The first landscape-level objective was to classify hyperspectral imagery in order to identify invasives of interest. The second landscape-level objective was to quantify infestation within the study area. Field-level hyperspectral data (350-2500nm) were collected for twenty-two wetland plant species in a wetland located in the lower Muskegon River watershed in Michigan, USA. The Jeffries-Matusita distance measure, continuum removal, and a shape-filter were applied to hyperspectral species reflectance data to characterize spectral features. Generally, continuum removal decreased separation distance for the invasive species of interest. Using the shape-filter, Lythrum salicaria, Phragmites australis, and Typha latifolia possessed maximum separation (distinguished from other species) at the near-infrared edge (700nm) and water absorption region (1350nm), the near-infrared down slope (1000 and 1100nm), and the visible/chlorophyll absorption region (500nm) and near-infrared edge (650nm), respectively. Airborne hyperspectral imagery was classified using a two-step approach in order to obtain an optimal map (overall accuracy ˜ 70%). Information in the near-infrared enabled relatively accurate classification for Phragmites australis using the Spectral Angle Mapper algorithm and image-derived training, while Typha latifolia signatures possessed high spectral overlap and required ISODATA clustering techniques. Landscape pattern metrics relate infestation to disturbances and hydrological controls. The highest levels of infestation and infestation patterns coincide with the most substantial levels of hydrological modifications indicating human disturbances are correlated with Typha and Phragmites percentages in the landscape. Overall the approach was successful and increased the level of information ultimately desired by decision makers. The rapidly advancing field of wetland remote sensing science can obtain more meaningful information from hyperspectral imagery; however, the data are challenging to work with and only the most precisely calibrated datasets will provide utility. Combining these data with traditional wetland assessment techniques can substantially advanced goals of preserving and restoring wetland ecosystem integrity.

  3. Plant–soil feedbacks provide an additional explanation for diversity–productivity relationships

    PubMed Central

    Kulmatiski, Andrew; Beard, Karen H.; Heavilin, Justin

    2012-01-01

    Plant–soil feedbacks (PSFs) have gained attention for their role in plant community dynamics, but their role in productivity has been overlooked. We developed and tested a biomass-specific, multi-species model to examine the role of PSFs in diversity–productivity relationships. The model predicts a negative relationship between PSFs and overyielding: plants with negative PSFs grow more in communities than in monoculture (i.e. overyield), and plants with positive PSFs grow less in communities than in monoculture (i.e. underyield). This effect is predicted to increase with diversity and saturate at low species richness because the proportion of ‘self-cultivated’ soils rapidly decreases as species are added to a community. Results in a set of glasshouse experiments supported model predictions. We found that PSFs measured in one experiment were negatively correlated with overyielding in three-species plant communities measured in a separate experiment. Furthermore, when parametrized with our experimental PSF data, our model successfully predicted species-level overyielding and underyielding. The model was less effective at predicting community-level overyielding and underyielding, although this appeared to reflect large differences between communities with or without nitrogen-fixing plants. Results provide conceptual and experimental support for the role of PSFs in diversity–productivity relationships. PMID:22496190

  4. The contrasting roles of growth traits and architectural traits in diversity maintenance in clonal plant communities.

    PubMed

    Wildová, Radka; Goldberg, Deborah E; Herben, Tomáš

    2012-12-01

    Plant communities often exhibit high diversity, even though pairwise experiments usually result in competitive hierarchies that should result in competitive exclusion. Such experiments, however, do not typically allow expression of spatial traits, despite theoretical studies showing the potential importance of spatial mechanisms of diversity maintenance. Here we ask whether, in a clonal plant model system, spatial trait variation is more likely than growth trait variation to maintain diversity. We used a field-calibrated, spatially explicit model to simulate communities comprising sets of four simulated species differing in only one of a suite of architectural or growth traits at a time, examining their dynamics and long-term diversity. To compare trait manipulation effects across traits measured in different units, we scaled traits to have identical effects on initial productivity. We found that in communities of species differing only in an architectural trait, all species usually persist, whereas communities of species differing only in a growth trait experienced rapid competitive exclusion. To examine the roles of equalizing and stabilizing mechanisms in maintaining diversity, we conducted reciprocal invasion experiments for species pairs differing only in single traits. The results suggest that stabilizing mechanisms cannot account for the observed long-term co-occurrence. Strong positive correlations between diversity and similarity both in monoculture carrying capacity and reciprocal invasion ability suggesting equalizing mechanisms may instead be responsible. PMID:23149395

  5. Evaluation of single extractants for assessing plant availability of rare earth elements in soils

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Fuliang Li; Xiaoquan Shan; Shuzhen Zhang

    2001-01-01

    The suitability of different extractants for estimating the plant availability of rare earth elements (REEs) in soils was assessed in a greenhouse study. 0.43 M CH3COOH, 0.01 M CaCl2, 0.1 M HCl, and DTPA were used as extractants and winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) as a test crop. Soil samples with diverse chemical and physical properties were collected from 9 different rural regions

  6. Assessment of species diversity from species abundance distributions at different localities

    E-print Network

    Engen, Steinar

    by analysing similarities of communities of rare and endangered species of oak-living beetles in southAssessment of species diversity from species abundance distributions at different localities, Norway. We show how the spatial structure of species diversity can be analyzed using the correlation

  7. DSM5 Research: Assessing the Mental Health Needs of Older Adults from Diverse Ethnic Backgrounds

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Alexis Lee Rose; Monit Cheung

    2012-01-01

    This article analyzes current trends and limitations in the design of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) with a focus on its application to older adults from diverse ethnic backgrounds. An analysis of 54 articles published between 2001 and 2011 in 4 social science databases that discussed DSM and its applicability to assessing ethnically diverse older adults'

  8. An assessment of restoration success to forests planted for ecosystem restoration in loess plateau, Northwestern China.

    PubMed

    Yang, Zhanbiao; Jin, Hongxi; Wang, Gang

    2010-05-01

    Using ecosystem attributes identified by the Society of Ecological Restoration International, we assessed three restoration projects in the loess plateau, northwestern China, including planting Larix principis-rupprechtii (LS) and Pinus tabulaeformis (PS) on shrubland, and planting L. principis-rupprechtii on open forest land (LO). The reestablishment of native species in LS and PS was poorer than LO because of the excessive stand density. Species diversity, seedling number, and seedling diversity were significantly higher in LO than in LS and PS. Soil nutrient was also significantly higher in the LO treatment. The vegetation composition, species diversity, and soil nutrient in LO, however, were more similar to these in the reference. Our results indicate that planting L. principis-rupprechtii on open forest land had accelerated the succession of the ecosystem for approximately 30 years. But the poor natural regeneration of L. principis-rupprechtii suggests that post-planting activities in LO are required after timber harvesting or the natural mortality of the L. principis-rupprechtii. Management operation such as selective thinning will be required in LS and PS to promote the true restoration of native species diversity in the future. PMID:19373438

  9. Producing Genetic Diversity in Crop Plants: The Case of Canadian Rapeseed, 1954–1991

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Arunas Juska; Lawrence Busch; Feng Huang Wu

    1997-01-01

    The paper develops a theoretical framework to explain changes in crop genetic resources. For this purpose the genetic diversity of crop plants is treated as a social\\/natural co-construct of human beings in particular historical settings. To illustrate the potential of such an approach, the history of rapeseed (Brassica rapa L. and Brassica napus L.) breeding in Canada from 1954 to

  10. PATTERNS OF ALLOZYME DIVERSITY IN THE THREATENED PLANT ERIGERON PARISHII (ASTERACEAE). (R826102)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Thirty-one occurrences of Erigeron parishii, a narrowly endemic plant threatened by mining, were sampled for allozyme diversity. This taxon held considerable genetic variation at the [4 allozyme loci surveyed. Species (e.g., alleles per locus [A] = 4.3 and proportion of polymorph...

  11. Aspen (Populus tremuloides) stands and their contribution to plant diversity in a semiarid coniferous landscape

    E-print Network

    Tate, Kenneth

    Aspen (Populus tremuloides) stands and their contribution to plant diversity in a semiarid a field study to determine the relative contributions of aspen (Populus tremuloides), meadow, and conifer Keystone species Á California Introduction Quaking aspen (Populus tremuloides) has been identi- fied

  12. ?????????????????? ????????????????????????????????????????????????????? Species Diversity of Edible Mushrooms and Plants at Sakaerat Biosphere Reserve

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Sujitra Kosol; Tantima Kumlung; Tanapak Inyod; Pongmanee Thongbai; Taksin Archavacom

    The study of species diversity and distribution of edible mushrooms and plants was carried out at Sakaerat Biosphere Reserve, Nakhon Ratchasima, by participatory action research during September 2004 to August 2005. Thirty species from 8 families of edible mushrooms were found in the deciduous dipterocarp forest, dry evergreen forest, and reforest plantation. The dominant species of mushrooms were Russula spp.(Fam.

  13. Exotic plant traits lead to functional diversity decline in novel ecosystems

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Exotic species have become common and even dominant in some grasslands forming novel ecosystems because the species in them have no common evolutionary history. Recent work on these novel ecosystems suggest that exotic species contribute to diversity declines. In order to identify the plant traits...

  14. Natural enemies thin melaleuca-canopy and help increase plant diversity in the melaleuca stands.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The Australian tree Melaleuca quinquenervia (Cav.) S.T. Blake (melaleuca) formed dense monocultural forests several decades after invading Florida and the Caribbean islands. These dominant forests have displaced native vegetation in sensitive wetland systems. We assumed that native plant diversity...

  15. Riparian woody plant diversity and forest structure along an urban-rural gradient

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Michele L. Burton; Lisa J. Samuelson; Shufen Pan

    2005-01-01

    Changes in riparian woody plant assemblages are anticipated in the southeastern United States due to increases in urbanization rates. Because riparian forests serve important roles in maintaining water quality and biodiversity, understanding how they respond to urbanization is crucial. The objective of this study was to examine forest structure and woody vegetation diversity indices of riparian communities in response to

  16. Diversity and biological activities of endophytic fungi associated with micropropagated medicinal plant Echinacea purpurea (L.) Moench

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Echinacea is one of the top ten selling medicinal herbs in Europe and United States. Commercially available formulations may contain different plant parts of three species (Echinacea purpurea, E. pallida, and E. angustifolia). Our study evaluates the diversity of microbial community associated with ...

  17. Plant succession in perennial grass strips and effects on the diversity of leafhoppers (Homoptera, Auchenorrhyncha)

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Erja Huusela-Veistola; Arja Vasarainen

    2000-01-01

    The biodiversity of agroecosystems may be enhanced by increasing species richness and structural diversity of vegetation by creating perennial strips. Aims of the study were (1) to describe the plant succession of perennial strips in northern conditions; (2) to clarify the difference in insect fauna between cereal fields and perennial strips; (3) to determine the effect of succession on leafhoppers

  18. Diversity of Marine Plants. Man and the Gulf of Mexico Series.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Irby, Bobby N., Comp.; And Others

    "Man and the Gulf of Mexico" (MGM) is a marine science curriculum series developed to meet the needs of 10th through 12th grade students in Mississippi and Alabama schools. This MGM unit on the diversity of marine plants is divided into 12 sections. The first section introduces the unit by providing objectives and activities on why people classify…

  19. Examining the Correlation between Remotely Sensed Data and Plant ??Diversity Measures in the Matroosberg Area

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Theo Pauw

    This study examines remote sensing of plant ?'diver sity levels in a mountainous area close to Worcester, Western Cape, covered in fynbos vegetation. Species richness data for 37 5x10m plots from an earlier field study is used as a measure of ?'diversity. The Spearman correlation between this and various remotely sensed variables computed from a SPOT image and an orthophoto

  20. PLANT SPECIES RICHNESS IN HIGH-DIVERSITY PRAIRIE SEEDINGS ALONG THE CENTRAL PLATTE RIVER, NEBRASKA

    Microsoft Academic Search

    CHRIS HELZER

    The Nature Conservancy (TNC), Prairie Plains Resource Institute, and the Platte River Whooping Crane Habitat Maintenance Trust, Inc., have been sowing high-diversity prairie restorations along the Central Platte River in Nebraska since the early 1990s. Seed mixes have included between 150 and 230 species of native prairie and wetland plants. As part of a large monitoring and evaluation effort associated

  1. Conservation of genetic diversity in the endangered plant Eriogonum ovalifolium var. vineum (Polygonaceae)

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Maile C. Neel; Norman C. Ellstrand

    2003-01-01

    The purpose of his research was to describethe organization of genetic variation in thefederally endangered plant taxon Eriogonumovalifolium var. vineum using allozymes. Such information can help prioritize sites andmanagement choices for capturing andmaintaining genetic variation and can reducethe number of populations necessary to committo conservation, thus reducing costs andconflicts with competing land uses. Information on genetic diversity patterns alsoprovides insight

  2. Pollinating Flies (Diptera): A major contribution to plant diversity and agricultural production

    E-print Network

    Mathis, Wayne N.

    Pollinating Flies (Diptera): A major contribution to plant diversity and agricultural production, in agriculture and in greenhouses, and have recently come into use in the production of seeds for seed banks flies guarantee or enhance seed and fruit production. They are important in the natural landscape

  3. Challenging urban species diversity: contrasting phylogenetic patterns across plant functional groups in Germany.

    PubMed

    Knapp, Sonja; Kühn, Ingolf; Schweiger, Oliver; Klotz, Stefan

    2008-10-01

    Cities are hotspots of plant species richness, harboring more species than their rural surroundings, at least over large enough scales. However, species richness does not necessarily cover all aspects of biodiversity such as phylogenetic relationships. Ignoring these relationships, our understanding of how species assemblages develop and change in a changing environment remains incomplete. Given the high vascular plant species richness of urbanized areas in Germany, we asked whether these also have a higher phylogenetic diversity than rural areas, and whether phylogenetic diversity patterns differ systematically between species groups characterized by specific functional traits. Calculating the average phylogenetic distinctness of the total German flora and accounting for spatial autocorrelation, we show that phylogenetic diversity of urban areas does not reflect their high species richness. Hence, high urban species richness is mainly due to more closely related species that are functionally similar and able to deal with urbanization. This diminished phylogenetic information might decrease the flora's capacity to respond to environmental changes. PMID:18616547

  4. 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

    We used multiscale plots to sample vascular plant diversity and soil characteristics in and adjacent to 26 long-term grazing exclosure sites in Colorado, Wyoming, Montana, and South Dakota, USA. The exclosures were 7-60 yr old (31.2 ?? 2.5 yr, mean ?? 1 SE). Plots were also randomly placed in the broader landscape in open rangeland in the same vegetation type at each site to assess spatial variation in grazed landscapes. Consistent sampling in the nine National Parks, Wildlife Refuges, and other management units yielded data from 78 1000-m2 plots and 780 1-m2 subplots. We hypothesized that native species richness would be lower in the exclosures than in grazed sites, due to competitive exclusion in the absence of grazing. We also hypothesized that grazed sites would have higher native and exotic species richness compared to ungrazed areas, due to disturbance (i.e., the intermediate-disturbance hypothesis) and the conventional wisdom that grazing may accelerate weed invasion. Both hypotheses were soundly rejected. Although native species richness in 1-m2 subplots was significantly higher (P < 0.05) in grazed sites, we found nearly identical native or exotic species richness in 1000-m2 plots in exclosures (31.5 ?? 2.5 native and 3.1 ?? 0.5 exotic species), adjacent grazed plots (32.6 ?? 2.8 native and 3.2 ?? 0.6 exotic species), and randomly selected grazed plots (31.6 ?? 2.9 native and 3.2 ?? 0.6 exotic species). We found no significant differences in species diversity (Hill's diversity indices, N1 and N2), evenness (Hill's ratio of evenness, E5), cover of various life-forms (grasses, forbs, and shrubs), soil texture, or soil percentage of N and C between grazed and ungrazed sites at the 1000-m2 plot scale. The species lists of the long-ungrazed and adjacent grazed plots overlapped just 57.9 ?? 2.8%. This difference in species composition is commonly attributed solely to the difference in grazing regimes. However, the species lists between pairs of grazed plots (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.

  5. Assessing the extent and diversity of riparian ecosystems in Sonora, Mexico

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Scott, M.L.; Nagler, P.L.; Glenn, E.P.; Valdes-Casillas, C.; Erker, J.A.; Reynolds, E.W.; Shafroth, P.B.; Gomez-Limon, E.; Jones, C.L.

    2009-01-01

    Conservation of forested riparian ecosystems is of international concern. Relatively little is known of the structure, composition, diversity, and extent of riparian ecosystems in Mexico. We used high- and low-resolution satellite imagery from 2000 to 2006, and ground-based sampling in 2006, to assess the spatial pattern, extent, and woody plant composition of riparian forests across a range of spatial scales for the state of Sonora, Mexico. For all 3rd and higher order streams, river bottomlands with riparian forests occupied a total area of 2,301 km2. Where forested bottomlands remained, on average, 34% of the area had been converted to agriculture while 39% remained forested. We estimated that the total area of riparian forest along the principal streams was 897 km2. Including fencerow trees, the total forested riparian area was 944 km2, or 0.5% of the total land area of Sonora. Ground-based sampling of woody riparian vegetation consisted of 92, 50 m radius circular plots. About 79 woody plant species were noted. The most important tree species, based on cover and frequency, were willow species Salix spp. (primarily S. goodingii and S. bonplandiana), mesquite species Prosopis spp. (primarily P. velutina), and Fremont cottonwood Populus fremontii. Woody riparian taxa at the reach scale showed a trend of increasing diversity from north to south within Sonora. Species richness was greatest in the willow-bald cypress Taxodium distichum var. mexicanum-Mexican cottonwood P. mexicana subsp. dimorphia ecosystem. The non-native tamarisk Tamarix spp. was rare, occurring at just three study reaches. Relatively natural stream flow patterns and fluvial disturbance regimes likely limit its establishment and spread. ?? 2008 Springer Science + Business Media BV.

  6. Nuclear power plant performance assessment pertaining to plant aging in France and the United States

    E-print Network

    Guyer, Brittany (Brittany Leigh)

    2013-01-01

    The effect of aging on nuclear power plant performance has come under increased scrutiny in recent years. The approaches used to make an assessment of this effect strongly influence the economics of nuclear power plant ...

  7. Receding Water Line and Interspecific Competition Determines Plant Community Composition and Diversity in Wetlands in Beijing

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Zhengjun; Gong, Huili; Zhang, Jing

    2015-01-01

    Climate and human-induced wetland degradation has accelerated in recent years, not only resulting in reduced ecosystem services but also greatly affecting the composition and diversity of wetland plant communities. To date, the knowledge of the differences in community parameters and their successional trends in degraded wetlands remains scarce. Here based on remote sensing images, geographic information system technology, and statistical methods, we produced a successional gradient map of the Yeyahu Wetland Nature Reserve in Beijing, which has experienced a steady decline in water level in recent decades. In addition, we analyzed community composition and diversity along with each identified gradient. The results showed that community diversity decreases while dominance increases with the progress of succession, with the highest diversity occurring during the early stage of succession. Moreover, the community demonstrates greater similarity among subareas during later successional stages, and the similarity coefficients calculated from the important value (IV) of each species are more accurate. Correlation analysis showed that the impact of soil factors on diversity was not significant at a subarea scale, although these nutrients showed an increasing trend with the community succession. Furthermore, the IVs of the dominant species had a particularly significant impact on diversity, showing a significantly negative correlation with diversity indices and a significantly positive correlation with dominance indices. Further analysis showed that the retreat of water level resulted from sustained drought and local human activities was a major extrinsic driving force resulting in observed differences in the community successional stages, which resulted in differences in community composition and diversity. On the other hand, interspecific competition was the main intrinsic mechanism, which significantly influenced the IVs of the dominant species and community diversity. The results of this study could aid in improving the understanding of community composition, diversity, and its successional trends in degraded wetlands. PMID:25848799

  8. Receding water line and interspecific competition determines plant community composition and diversity in wetlands in Beijing.

    PubMed

    Wang, Zhengjun; Gong, Huili; Zhang, Jing

    2015-01-01

    Climate and human-induced wetland degradation has accelerated in recent years, not only resulting in reduced ecosystem services but also greatly affecting the composition and diversity of wetland plant communities. To date, the knowledge of the differences in community parameters and their successional trends in degraded wetlands remains scarce. Here based on remote sensing images, geographic information system technology, and statistical methods, we produced a successional gradient map of the Yeyahu Wetland Nature Reserve in Beijing, which has experienced a steady decline in water level in recent decades. In addition, we analyzed community composition and diversity along with each identified gradient. The results showed that community diversity decreases while dominance increases with the progress of succession, with the highest diversity occurring during the early stage of succession. Moreover, the community demonstrates greater similarity among subareas during later successional stages, and the similarity coefficients calculated from the important value (IV) of each species are more accurate. Correlation analysis showed that the impact of soil factors on diversity was not significant at a subarea scale, although these nutrients showed an increasing trend with the community succession. Furthermore, the IVs of the dominant species had a particularly significant impact on diversity, showing a significantly negative correlation with diversity indices and a significantly positive correlation with dominance indices. Further analysis showed that the retreat of water level resulted from sustained drought and local human activities was a major extrinsic driving force resulting in observed differences in the community successional stages, which resulted in differences in community composition and diversity. On the other hand, interspecific competition was the main intrinsic mechanism, which significantly influenced the IVs of the dominant species and community diversity. The results of this study could aid in improving the understanding of community composition, diversity, and its successional trends in degraded wetlands. PMID:25848799

  9. Plant diversity and ecosystem?productivity: Theoretical considerations

    PubMed Central

    Tilman, David; Lehman, Clarence L.; Thomson, Kendall T.

    1997-01-01

    Ecosystem processes are thought to depend on both the number and identity of the species present in an ecosystem, but mathematical theory predicting this has been lacking. Here we present three simple models of interspecific competitive interactions in communities containing various numbers of randomly chosen species. All three models predict that, on average, productivity increases asymptotically with the original biodiversity of a community. The two models that address plant nutrient competition also predict that ecosystem nutrient retention increases with biodiversity and that the effects of biodiversity on productivity and nutrient retention increase with interspecific differences in resource requirements. All three models show that both species identity and biodiversity simultaneously influence ecosystem functioning, but their relative importance varies greatly among the models. This theory reinforces recent experimental results and shows that effects of biodiversity on ecosystem functioning are predicted by well-known ecological processes. PMID:11038606

  10. Patterns of genetic diversity in three plant lineages endemic to the Cape Verde Islands

    PubMed Central

    Romeiras, Maria M.; Monteiro, Filipa; Duarte, M. Cristina; Schaefer, Hanno; Carine, Mark

    2015-01-01

    Conservation of plant diversity on islands relies on a good knowledge of the taxonomy, distribution and genetic diversity of species. In recent decades, a combination of morphology- and DNA-based approaches has become the standard for investigating island plant lineages and this has led, in some cases, to the discovery of previously overlooked diversity, including ‘cryptic species’. The flora of the Cape Verde archipelago in the North Atlantic is currently thought to comprise ?740 vascular plant species, 92 of them endemics. Despite the fact that it is considered relatively well known, there has been a 12 % increase in the number of endemics in the last two decades. Relatively few of the Cape Verde plant lineages have been included in genetic studies so far and little is known about the patterns of diversification in the archipelago. Here we present an updated list for the endemic Cape Verde flora and analyse diversity patterns for three endemic plant lineages (Cynanchum, Globularia and Umbilicus) based on one nuclear (ITS) and four plastid DNA regions. In all three lineages, we find genetic variation. In Cynanchum, we find two distinct haplotypes with no clear geographical pattern, possibly reflecting different ploidy levels. In Globularia and Umbilicus, differentiation is evident between populations from northern and southern islands. Isolation and drift resulting from the small and fragmented distributions, coupled with the significant distances separating the northern and southern islands, could explain this pattern. Overall, our study suggests that the diversity in the endemic vascular flora of Cape Verde is higher than previously thought and further work is necessary to characterize the flora. PMID:25979965

  11. Fast optical assessment of pesticide coverage on plants

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Harald Hake; Ravid Ben-Zur; Israel Schechter; Angelika Anders

    2007-01-01

    This study addresses the necessity to provide fast assessment of pesticide coverage on plants, which is required for saving the expensive compounds and for protecting the environment against overdosing. The feasibility of applying several optical methods for direct detection of the pesticides on plants has been investigated. In order to overcome the matrix effect, which is related to plant fluorescence

  12. A new image of plantain diversity assessed by SSR, AFLP and MSAP markers.

    PubMed

    Noyer, J L; Causse, S; Tomekpe, K; Bouet, A; Baurens, F C

    2005-05-01

    Using both SSR and AFLP markers, the genetic diversity of 30 plantains constituting a representative sample of the phenotypic diversity was assessed. The results confirmed a very narrow genetic base of this cultivar group. SSR and AFLP data support the hypothesis that these cultivars may have arisen from vegetative multiplication of a single seed. MSAP were used to survey cytosine methylation status at CCGG sites in order to obtain an alternative source of diversity data. A higher degree of polymorphism was revealed allowing the classification of the samples into three clusters. No correlation was observed between the phenotypic classification and methylation diversity. Implications for breeding programs are discussed. PMID:16011003

  13. Invasive plants have scale-dependent effects on diversity by altering species-area relationships.

    PubMed

    Powell, Kristin I; Chase, Jonathan M; Knight, Tiffany M

    2013-01-18

    Although invasive plant species often reduce diversity, they rarely cause plant extinctions. We surveyed paired invaded and uninvaded plant communities from three biomes. We reconcile the discrepancy in diversity loss from invaders by showing that invaded communities have lower local richness but steeper species accumulation with area than that of uninvaded communities, leading to proportionately fewer species loss at broader spatial scales. We show that invaders drive scale-dependent biodiversity loss through strong neutral sampling effects on the number of individuals in a community. We also show that nonneutral species extirpations are due to a proportionately larger effect of invaders on common species, suggesting that rare species are buffered against extinction. Our study provides a synthetic perspective on the threat of invasions to biodiversity loss across spatial scales. PMID:23329045

  14. Plant Diversity in the Human Diet: Weak Phylogenetic Signal Indicates Breadth

    NSDL National Science Digital Library

    Proche& #351 (Stellenbosch University; )

    2008-02-01

    Worldwide, humans have access to a greater range of food plants than does any other species. Examination of phylogenetic patterns in plants consumed by animals has recently uncovered important ecological processes. The same techniques, however, have not been applied to our own species. Here we show that although humans tend to eat more species in certain families (e.g., Rosaceae) and fewer in others (e.g., Orchidaceae), the proportion of edible species in most families is similar to random expectations. Phylogenetic patterning in angiosperm edibility is also weak. We argue that the remarkable breadth of the human diet is the result of humans' huge geographic range, diverse food-collection methods, and ability to process normally inedible items. Humans are thus generalist feeders in the broadest sense. Cross-cultural analyses of diversity in the plant diet of humans could represent a fascinating new field of research linking ecology, anthropology, history, and sociology.

  15. A comparative study of AMF diversity in annual and perennial plant species from semiarid gypsum soils.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alguacil, M. M.; Torrecillas, E.; Roldán, A.; Díaz, G.; Torres, P.

    2012-04-01

    The arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) communities composition regulate plant interactions and determine the structure of plant communities. In this study we analysed the diversity of AMF in the roots of two perennial gypsophyte plant species, Herniaria fruticosa and Senecio auricula, and an annual herbaceous species, Bromus rubens, growing in a gypsum soil from a semiarid area. The objective was to determine whether perennial and annual host plants support different AMF communities in their roots and whether there are AMF species that might be indicators of specific functional plant roles in these ecosystems. The roots were analysed by nested PCR, cloning, sequencing of the ribosomal DNA small subunit region and phylogenetic analysis. Twenty AMF sequence types, belonging to the Glomus group A, Glomus group B, Diversisporaceae, Acaulosporaceae, Archaeosporaceae and Paraglomeraceae, were identified. Both gypsophyte perennial species had differing compositions of the AMF community and higher diversity when compared with the annual species, showing preferential selection by specific AMF sequences types. B. rubens did not show host specificity, sharing the full composition of its AMF community with both perennial plant species. Seasonal variations in the competitiveness of AM fungi could explain the observed differences in AMF community composition, but this is still a working hypothesis that requires the analysis of further data obtained from a higher number of both annual and perennial plant species in order to be fully tested.

  16. Predators indirectly reduce the prevalence of an insect-vectored plant pathogen independent of predator diversity.

    PubMed

    Long, Elizabeth Y; Finke, Deborah L

    2015-04-01

    A widely cited benefit of predator diversity is greater suppression of insect herbivores, with corresponding increases in plant biomass. In the context of a vector-borne pathogen system, predator species richness may also influence plant disease risk via the direct effects of predators on the abundance and behavior of herbivores that also act as pathogen vectors. Using an assemblage of generalist insect predators, we examined the relationship between predator species richness and the prevalence of the aphid-vectored cereal yellow dwarf virus in wheat. We found that increasing predator richness enhanced suppression of the vector population and that pathogen prevalence was reduced when predators were present, but the reduction in prevalence was independent of predator species richness. To determine the mechanism(s) by which predator species richness contributes to vector suppression, but not pathogen prevalence, we evaluated vector movement and host plant occupancy in response to predator treatments. We found that pathogen prevalence was unrelated to vector suppression because host plant occupancy by vectors did not vary as a function of vector abundance. However, the presence of predators reduced pathogen prevalence because predators stimulated greater plant-to-plant movement by vectors, which likely diminished vector feeding time and reduced the transmission efficiency of this persistent pathogen. We conclude that community structure (i.e., the presence of predators), but not predator diversity, is a potential factor influencing local plant infection by this insect-vectored pathogen. PMID:25561170

  17. Plant-Wide Assessment Report for Shaw Industries, Plant #78; Aiken, SC

    SciTech Connect

    Michael Brown PE, CEM; Matt Soderlund; Bill Meffert PE; Paolo Baldisserotto; Jerry Zolkowski PE, CEM

    2006-04-10

    A plant-wide energy assessment sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy was conducted at Shaw Industries Group, plant #78 in Aiken, SC. The assessment team consisted of Georgia Tech faculty from the Energy & Environmental Management Center and Shaw personnel from plant #78 and the corporate energy group. The purpose of this assessment was to uncover as many opportunities for saving energy usage and costs using techniques that have been established as best practices in the energy engineering field. In addition, these findings are to be shared with similar plants in Shaw Industries Group to multiply the lessons learned. The findings from this assessment are included in this report.

  18. High plant diversity is needed to maintain ecosystem services.

    PubMed

    Isbell, Forest; Calcagno, Vincent; Hector, Andy; Connolly, John; Harpole, W Stanley; Reich, Peter B; Scherer-Lorenzen, Michael; Schmid, Bernhard; Tilman, David; van Ruijven, Jasper; Weigelt, Alexandra; Wilsey, Brian J; Zavaleta, Erika S; Loreau, Michel

    2011-09-01

    Biodiversity is rapidly declining worldwide, and there is consensus that this can decrease ecosystem functioning and services. It remains unclear, though, whether few or many of the species in an ecosystem are needed to sustain the provisioning of ecosystem services. It has been hypothesized that most species would promote ecosystem services if many times, places, functions and environmental changes were considered; however, no previous study has considered all of these factors together. Here we show that 84% of the 147 grassland plant species studied in 17 biodiversity experiments promoted ecosystem functioning at least once. Different species promoted ecosystem functioning during different years, at different places, for different functions and under different environmental change scenarios. Furthermore, the species needed to provide one function during multiple years were not the same as those needed to provide multiple functions within one year. Our results indicate that even more species will be needed to maintain ecosystem functioning and services than previously suggested by studies that have either (1) considered only the number of species needed to promote one function under one set of environmental conditions, or (2) separately considered the importance of biodiversity for providing ecosystem functioning across multiple years, places, functions or environmental change scenarios. Therefore, although species may appear functionally redundant when one function is considered under one set of environmental conditions, many species are needed to maintain multiple functions at multiple times and places in a changing world. PMID:21832994

  19. Soil fungal abundance and diversity: another victim of the invasive plant Centaurea maculosa.

    PubMed

    Broz, Amanda K; Manter, Daniel K; Vivanco, Jorge M

    2007-12-01

    Interactions between plants and soil microbes are important determinants of both above- and belowground community composition, and ultimately ecosystem function. As exotic plants continue to invade and modify native plant communities, there has been increasing interest in determining the influence of exotic invasives on native soil microbial communities. Here, using highly sensitive molecular techniques, we examine fungal abundance and diversity in the soil surrounding a particularly aggressive invasive plant species in North America, Centaurea maculosa Lam. In mixed stands, we show that this invasive weed can alter the native fungal community composition within its own rhizosphere and that of neighboring native plants. At higher densities, the effect of C. maculosa on native soil fungal communities was even greater. Our results demonstrate that this invasive weed can have significant effects not only on visible aboveground biodiversity but also on the native soil microbial community that extends beyond its rhizosphere. PMID:18059499

  20. Paramagnetic cellulose DNA isolation improves DNA yield and quality among diverse plant taxa1

    PubMed Central

    Moeller, Jackson R.; Moehn, Nicholas R.; Waller, Donald M.; Givnish, Thomas J.

    2014-01-01

    • Premise of the study: The chemical diversity of land plants ensures that no single DNA isolation method results in high yield and purity with little effort for all species. Here we evaluate a new technique originally developed for forensic science, based on MagnaCel paramagnetic cellulose particles (PMC), to determine its efficacy in extracting DNA from 25 plant species representing 21 families and 15 orders. • Methods and Results: Yield and purity of DNA isolated by PMC, DNeasy Plant Mini Kit (silica column), and cetyltrimethylammonium bromide (CTAB) methods were compared among four individuals for each of 25 plant species. PMC gave a twofold advantage in average yield, and the relative advantage of the PMC method was greatest for samples with the lowest DNA yields. PMC also produced more consistent sample purity based on absorbance ratios at 260:280 and 260:230 nm. • Conclusions: PMC technology is a promising alternative for plant DNA isolation. PMID:25309836

  1. Bottom-up effects of host-plant species diversity and top-down effects of ants interactively increase plant performance.

    PubMed

    Moreira, Xoaquín; Mooney, Kailen A; Zas, Rafael; Sampedro, Luis

    2012-11-01

    While plant diversity is well known to increase primary productivity, whether these bottom-up effects are enhanced by reciprocal top-down effects from the third trophic level is unknown. We studied whether pine tree species diversity, aphid-tending ants and their interaction determined plant performance and arthropod community structure. Plant diversity had a positive effect on aphids, but only in the presence of mutualistic ants, leading to a threefold greater number of both groups in the tri-specific cultures than in monocultures. Plant diversity increased ant abundance not only by increasing aphid number, but also by increasing ant recruitment per aphid. The positive effect of diversity on ants in turn cascaded down to increase plant performance; diversity increased plant growth (but not biomass), and this effect was stronger in the presence of ants. Consequently, bottom-up effects of diversity within the same genus and guild of plants, and top-down effects from the third trophic level (predatory ants), interactively increased plant performance. PMID:22951745

  2. Are different facets of plant diversity well protected against climate and land cover changes? A test study in the French Alps

    PubMed Central

    Thuiller, Wilfried; Guéguen, Maya; Georges, Damien; Bonet, Richard; Chalmandrier, Loïc; Garraud, Luc; Renaud, Julien; Roquet, Cristina; Van Es, Jérémie; Zimmermann, Niklaus E.; Lavergne, Sébastien

    2014-01-01

    Climate and land cover changes are important drivers of the plant species distributions and diversity patterns in mountainous regions. Although the need for a multifaceted view of diversity based on taxonomic, functional and phylogenetic dimensions is now commonly recognized, there are no complete risk assessments concerning their expected changes. In this paper, we used a range of species distribution models in an ensemble-forecasting framework together with regional climate and land cover projections by 2080 to analyze the potential threat for more than 2,500 plant species at high resolution (2.5 km × 2.5 km) in the French Alps. We also decomposed taxonomic, functional and phylogenetic diversity facets into ? and ? components and analyzed their expected changes by 2080. Overall, plant species threats from climate and land cover changes in the French Alps were expected to vary depending on the species’ preferred altitudinal vegetation zone, rarity, and conservation status. Indeed, rare species and species of conservation concern were the ones projected to experience less severe change, and also the ones being the most efficiently preserved by the current network of protected areas. Conversely, the three facets of plant diversity were also projected to experience drastic spatial re-shuffling by 2080. In general, the mean ?-diversity of the three facets was projected to increase to the detriment of regional ?-diversity, although the latter was projected to remain high at the montane-alpine transition zones. Our results show that, due to a high-altitude distribution, the current protection network is efficient for rare species, and species predicted to migrate upward. Although our modeling framework may not capture all possible mechanisms of species range shifts, our work illustrates that a comprehensive risk assessment on an entire floristic region combined with functional and phylogenetic information can help delimitate future scenarios of biodiversity and better design its protection. PMID:25722539

  3. Assessing Nutritional Diversity of Cropping Systems in African Villages

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Roseline Remans; Dan F. B. Flynn; Fabrice DeClerck; Willy Diru; Jessica Fanzo; Kaitlyn Gaynor; Isabel Lambrecht; Joseph Mudiope; Patrick K. Mutuo; Phelire Nkhoma; David Siriri; Clare Sullivan; Cheryl A. Palm

    2011-01-01

    BackgroundIn Sub-Saharan Africa, 40% of children under five years in age are chronically undernourished. As new investments and attention galvanize action on African agriculture to reduce hunger, there is an urgent need for metrics that monitor agricultural progress beyond calories produced per capita and address nutritional diversity essential for human health. In this study we demonstrate how an ecological tool,

  4. Preparing Teachers for Diverse Learners: Assessing Teacher Candidates' Dispositions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Northington, Vera Ann

    2011-01-01

    The National Council for Accreditation for Teacher Education (NCATE) recommended teacher preparation programs measure teacher candidates' disposition toward diverse learners. The conduction of the quantitative cross-sectional survey design utilized the Quick Discrimination Index Survey (QDI), a Likert-type tool that used reversed or negatively…

  5. Reproductive consequences of mate quantity versus mate diversity in a wind-pollinated plant

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vandepitte, K.; Roldán-Ruiz, I.; Honnay, O.

    2009-07-01

    Since most pollen travels limited distances in wind-pollinated plants, both the local quantity and diversity of mates may limit female reproductive success. Yet little evidence exists on their relative contribution, despite the importance of viable seed production to population dynamics. To study how variation in female reproductive success is affected by the quantity versus the diversity of surrounding mates contributing pollen, we integrated pollination experiments, data on natural seed set and seed viability, and AFLP genetic marker data in the wind-pollinated dioecious clonal forest herb Mercurialis perennis. Pollination experiments indicated weak quantitative pollen limitation effects on seed set. Among-population crosses showed reduced seed viability, suggesting outbreeding depression due to genetic divergence. Pollination with pollen from a single source did not negatively affect reproductive success. These findings were consistent with results of the survey of natural female reproductive success. Seed set decreased with the distance to males in a female plants' local neighborhood, suggesting a shortage of pollen in isolated female plants, and increased with the degree of local genetic diversity. Spatial isolation to other populations and population size did not affect seed set. None of these variables were related to seed viability. We conclude that pollen movement in M. perennis is likely very limited. Both male proximity and the local degree of genetic diversity influenced female reproductive success.

  6. Nitrogen deposition and multi-dimensional plant diversity at the landscape scale

    PubMed Central

    Roth, Tobias; Kohli, Lukas; Rihm, Beat; Amrhein, Valentin; Achermann, Beat

    2015-01-01

    Estimating effects of nitrogen (N) deposition is essential for understanding human impacts on biodiversity. However, studies relating atmospheric N deposition to plant diversity are usually restricted to small plots of high conservation value. Here, we used data on 381 randomly selected 1?km2 plots covering most habitat types of Central Europe and an elevational range of 2900?m. We found that high atmospheric N deposition was associated with low values of six measures of plant diversity. The weakest negative relation to N deposition was found in the traditionally measured total species richness. The strongest relation to N deposition was in phylogenetic diversity, with an estimated loss of 19% due to atmospheric N deposition as compared with a homogeneously distributed historic N deposition without human influence, or of 11% as compared with a spatially varying N deposition for the year 1880, during industrialization in Europe. Because phylogenetic plant diversity is often related to ecosystem functioning, we suggest that atmospheric N deposition threatens functioning of ecosystems at the landscape scale.

  7. Grazer exclusion alters plant spatial organization at multiple scales, increasing diversity

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Hui; Gilbert, Benjamin; Wang, Wenbin; Liu, Junjie; Zhou, Shurong

    2013-01-01

    Grazing is one of the most important factors influencing community structure and productivity in natural grasslands. Understanding why and how grazing pressure changes species diversity is essential for the preservation and restoration of biodiversity in grasslands. We use heavily grazed subalpine meadows in the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau to test the hypothesis that grazer exclusion alters plant diversity by changing inter- and intraspecific species distributions. Using recently developed spatial analyses combined with detailed ramet mapping of entire plant communities (91 species), we show striking differences between grazed and fenced areas that emerged at scales of just one meter. Species richness was similar at very small scales (0.0625 m2), but at larger scales diversity in grazed areas fell below 75% of corresponding fenced areas. These differences were explained by differences in spatial distributions; intra- and interspecific associations changed from aggregated at small scales to overdispersed in the fenced plots, but were consistently aggregated in the grazed ones. We conclude that grazing enhanced inter- and intraspecific aggregations and maintained high diversity at small scales, but caused decreased turnover in species at larger scales, resulting in lower species richness. Our study provides strong support to the theoretical prediction that inter- and intraspecific aggregation produces local spatial patterns that scale-up to affect species diversity in a community. It also demonstrates that the impacts of grazing can manifest through this mechanism, lowering diversity by reducing spatial turnover in species. Finally, it highlights the ecological and physiological plant processes that are likely responding to grazing and thereby altering aggregation patterns, providing new insights for monitoring, and mediating the impacts of grazing. PMID:24223294

  8. Assessing uniformity in soil plant atmosphere chambers

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Growth chambers provide precisely controlled environments in which to grow plants and evaluate the effects of one or more controllable parameters on plant responses. Because of this precise control, it is arguable that less plant replication is required in growth chamber versus field studies. Howe...

  9. In silico identification of conserved microRNAs in large number of diverse plant species

    PubMed Central

    Sunkar, Ramanjulu; Jagadeeswaran, Guru

    2008-01-01

    Background MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are recently discovered small non-coding RNAs that play pivotal roles in gene expression, specifically at the post-transcriptional level in plants and animals. Identification of miRNAs in large number of diverse plant species is important to understand the evolution of miRNAs and miRNA-targeted gene regulations. Now-a-days, publicly available databases play a central role in the in-silico biology. Because, at least ~21 miRNA families are conserved in higher plants, a homology based search using these databases can help identify orthologs or paralogs in plants. Results We searched all publicly available nucleotide databases of genome survey sequences (GSS), high-throughput genomics sequences (HTGS), expressed sequenced tags (ESTs) and nonredundant (NR) nucleotides and identified 682 miRNAs in 155 diverse plant species. We found more than 15 conserved miRNA families in 11 plant species, 10 to14 families in 10 plant species and 5 to 9 families in 29 plant species. Nineteen conserved miRNA families were identified in important model legumes such as Medicago, Lotus and soybean. Five miRNA families – miR319, miR156/157, miR169, miR165/166 and miR394 – were found in 51, 45, 41, 40 and 40 diverse plant species, respectively. miR403 homologs were found in 16 dicots, whereas miR437 and miR444 homologs, as well as the miR396d/e variant of the miR396 family, were found only in monocots, thus providing large-scale authenticity for the dicot- and monocot-specific miRNAs. Furthermore, we provide computational and/or experimental evidence for the conservation of 6 newly found Arabidopsis miRNA homologs (miR158, miR391, miR824, miR825, miR827 and miR840) and 2 small RNAs (small-85 and small-87) in Brassica spp. Conclusion Using all publicly available nucleotide databases, 682 miRNAs were identified in 155 diverse plant species. By combining the expression analysis with the computational approach, we found that 6 miRNAs and 2 small RNAs that have been identified only in Arabidopsis thus far, are also conserved in Brassica spp. These findings will be useful for tracing the evolution of small RNAs by examining their expression in common ancestors of the Arabidopsis-Brassica lineage. PMID:18416839

  10. Assessing phenotypic, biochemical, and molecular diversity in coriander ( Coriandrum sativum L.) germplasm

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Pedro A. López; Mark P. Widrlechner; Philipp W. Simon; Satish Rai; Terri D. Boylston; Terry A. Isbell; Theodore B. Bailey; Candice A. Gardner; Lester A. Wilson

    2008-01-01

    Our goals for this research were to elucidate phenotypic and biochemical diversity in coriander (Coriandrum sativum L.) populations maintained at the North Central Regional Plant Introduction Station in Ames, IA, and examine relationships\\u000a between amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) markers and patterns of phenotypic and biochemical diversity. Phenotypic\\u000a and biochemical traits were evaluated, and analyses of variance and mean comparisons

  11. Lead exposure and blood pressure among workers in diverse industrial plants in Kenya.

    PubMed

    Were, Faridah H; Moturi, M Charles; Gottesfeld, P; Wafula, Godfrey A; Kamau, Geoffrey N; Shiundu, Paul M

    2014-01-01

    The study evaluated airborne exposures and blood lead (BPb) levels in 233 production workers at six diverse industrial plants in Kenya. Blood and personal breathing zone air samples were collected and analyzed for lead (Pb) using atomic absorption spectroscopy. Blood pressure (BP) levels were measured using a standard mercury sphygmomanometer. The results indicated mean airborne Pb levels ± standard deviation (SD) as follows: 183.2 ± 53.6 ?g/m(3) in battery recycling, 133.5 ± 39.6 ?g/m(3) in battery manufacturing, 126.2 ± 39.9 ?g/m(3) in scrap metal welding, 76.3 ± 33.2 ?g/m(3) in paint manufacturing, 27.3 ± 12.1 ?g/m(3) in a leather manufacturing, and 5.5 ± 3.6 ?g/m(3) in a pharmaceutical plant. The mean airborne Pb levels exceeded the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) 8-hr time-weighted average (TWA) permissible exposure limit (PEL) for Pb of 50 ?g/m(3) in the battery manufacturing, battery recycling, welding, and paint manufacturing plants. Similarly, mean BPb concentrations exceeded the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH®) biological exposure index (BEI) for Pb of 30 ?g/dl. A significant positive association was observed between BPb and breathing zone air Pb (R(2) = 0.73, P < 0.001). Approximately 30% of the production workers (N = 233) were in the hypertensive range with an average systolic and diastolic blood pressure (BP) of 134.7 ± 12.7 mmHg and 86.4 ± 8.9 mmHg, respectively. In the multivariate regression analysis, age, duration of work, airborne Pb and BPb levels were significantly associated (P < 0.05) with a change in BP. We recommend improved engineering controls, work practices, and personal hygiene to reduce Pb exposures. In addition, workers should undergo comprehensive medical surveillance to include BPb and BP testing, and airborne Pb assessments in all industries with significant lead exposures. PMID:24690073

  12. Terrestrial water and carbon fluxes across climatic gradients: does plant diversity matter?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pappas, Christoforos; Fatichi, Simone; Burlando, Paolo

    2014-05-01

    Vegetation diversity in many land-surface, ecohydrological, and dynamic vegetation models is crudely represented using a discrete classification of a handful of "plant types" (named Plant Functional Types; PFTs). The parameterization of PFTs typically reflects mean properties of observed plant functional traits over broad categories (e.g., temperate broadleaf deciduous forest) ignoring most of the inter- and intra-specific trait variability. In the present study, taking advantage of well-established plant-trait cross-correlations described by the Leaf Economics Spectrum, we generated coordinated hypothetical species across a continuous spectrum of leaf traits, rather than using pre-defined categories. The behavior of these proxy species is then tested using a mechanistic ecohydrological model (T&C) that operates as a filter of their performance. Simulations are carried out for a range of climates representative of different elevations and wetness conditions in Switzerland. Using this framework the following questions are addressed: (i) how sensitive are the carbon and water dynamics to species diversity? and (ii) which is the correlation between plant physiological traits, plant performance and observed trait distribution across climatic gradients?

  13. 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.

  14. Does Land-Use Intensification Decrease Plant Phylogenetic Diversity in Local Grasslands?

    PubMed Central

    Egorov, Eugen; Prati, Daniel; Durka, Walter; Michalski, Stefan; Fischer, Markus; Schmitt, Barbara; Blaser, Stefan; Brändle, Martin

    2014-01-01

    Phylogenetic diversity (PD) has been successfully used as a complement to classical measures of biological diversity such as species richness or functional diversity. By considering the phylogenetic history of species, PD broadly summarizes the trait space within a community. This covers amongst others complex physiological or biochemical traits that are often not considered in estimates of functional diversity, but may be important for the understanding of community assembly and the relationship between diversity and ecosystem functions. In this study we analyzed the relationship between PD of plant communities and land-use intensification in 150 local grassland plots in three regions in Germany. Specifically we asked whether PD decreases with land-use intensification and if so, whether the relationship is robust across different regions. Overall, we found that species richness decreased along land-use gradients the results however differed for common and rare species assemblages. PD only weakly decreased with increasing land-use intensity. The strength of the relationship thereby varied among regions and PD metrics used. From our results we suggest that there is no general relationship between PD and land-use intensification probably due to lack of phylogenetic conservatism in land-use sensitive traits. Nevertheless, we suggest that depending on specific regional idiosyncrasies the consideration of PD as a complement to other measures of diversity can be useful. PMID:25061934

  15. Diversity, distribution and conservation status assessment of Paraguayan palms (Arecaceae)

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Irene GautoRodolphe; Rodolphe E. Spichiger; Fred W. Stauffer

    Indigenous palm species of Paraguay are presented with data on their diversity, distribution, threats and conservation status.\\u000a The Paraguayan palm flora consists of 23 native species in 11 genera, representing two of the five subfamilies recognized\\u000a in the group. The palm distribution in the country is strongly related to the different ecoregions present in Paraguay, with\\u000a number of species by

  16. Relating UV-B radiation screening effectiveness of foliage to absorbing-compound concentration and anatomical characteristics in a diverse group of plants

    Microsoft Academic Search

    T. A. Day

    1993-01-01

    The ultraviolet-B radiation (UV-B, 300 nm) screening effectiveness of foliage of a diverse group of plants was examined by measuring epidermal transmittance and depth of penetration of UV-B with a fiberoptic microprobe. In addition, the concentration of UV-B-absorbing compounds and various anatomical characteristics were measured to assess whether they were useful predictors of UV-B screening. Sun foliage of naturally growing

  17. KIPS: An Evidence-Based Tool for Assessing Parenting Strengths and Needs in Diverse Families

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Comfort, Marilee; Gordon, Philip R.; Naples, Denise

    2011-01-01

    The movement toward evidence-based practices has stimulated greater interest in assessing parenting outcomes. The purpose of these studies was to further validate the Keys to Interactive Parenting Scale (KIPS), a structured observational assessment of parenting quality, with 397 diverse families. Factor analysis demonstrated that the 12 KIPS items…

  18. Portfolios for Prior Learning Assessment: Caught between Diversity and Standardization

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sweygers, Annelies; Soetewey, Kim; Meeus, Wil; Struyf, Elke; Pieters, Bert

    2009-01-01

    In recent years, procedures have been established in Flanders for "Prior Learning Assessment" (PLA) outside the formal learning circuit, of which the portfolio is a regular component. In order to maximize the possibilities of acknowledgement of prior learning assessment, the Flemish government is looking for a set of common criteria and principles…

  19. Quality assessment of plant transpiration water

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Macler, Bruce A.; Janik, Daniel S.; Benson, Brian L.

    1990-01-01

    It has been proposed to use plants as elements of biologically-based life support systems for long-term space missions. Three roles have been brought forth for plants in this application: recycling of water, regeneration of air and production of food. This report discusses recycling of water and presents data from investigations of plant transpiration water quality. Aqueous nutrient solution was applied to several plant species and transpired water collected. The findings indicated that this water typically contained 0.3-6 ppm of total organic carbon, which meets hygiene water standards for NASA's space applications. It suggests that this method could be developed to achieve potable water standards.

  20. Dissecting Tropical Plant Diversity with Forest Plots and a Molecular Toolkit

    NSDL National Science Digital Library

    Christopher Dick (University of Michigan; Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology)

    2009-10-01

    Tropical rainforests are the most biologically diverse of terrestrial biomes. Despite the ecological importance and economic potential of tropical trees, a large fraction of tropical forest tree species lack scientific names, and hundreds of woody plant species in the most intensively studied forest plots remain unidentified. DNA diagnostic tools, including plastid â??DNA barcodesâ? and multilocus genomic markers, can be applied to tropical forest dynamics plots to facilitate taxonomic discovery. Such genetic surveys, as outlined in this article, require expanded herbarium infrastructure and linkages in field ecology, population genetics, and bioinformatics. The fusion of traditional botany and molecular methods will provide baseline data for understanding both the origin and maintenance of tropical plant diversity.

  1. Natural Products from Plant-associated Microorganisms: Distribution, Structural Diversity, Bioactivity, and Implications of Their Occurrence?

    PubMed Central

    Gunatilaka, A. A. Leslie

    2012-01-01

    A growing body of evidence suggests that plant-associated microorganisms, especially endophytic and rhizosphere bacteria and fungi, represent a huge and largely untapped resource of natural products with chemical structures that have been optimized by evolution for biological and ecological relevance. A diverse array of bioactive small molecule natural products has been encountered in these microorganisms. The structures of over 230 metabolites isolated and characterized from over 70 plant-associated microbial strains during the past four years are presented with information on their hosts, culture conditions, and biological activities. Some significant biological and ecological implications of their occurrence are also reviewed. PMID:16562864

  2. Plant monocultures produce more antagonistic soil Streptomyces communities than high-diversity plant communities

    E-print Network

    Weiblen, George D

    associated with four different plant species (two C4 grasses: Andropogon gerardii, Schizachyrium scoparium of particular plant species on Streptomyces antagonistic activity; A. gerardii supported a higher proportion richness for A. gerardii in L. perennis-trained soil, for L. capitata in A. gerardii-trained soil

  3. Implementing DOE guidance for hazards assessments at Rocky Flats Plant

    SciTech Connect

    Zimmerman, G.A.

    1993-06-01

    Hazards Assessments are performed for a variety of activities and facilities at Rocky Flats Plant. Prior to 1991, there was no guidance for performing Hazards Assessments. Each organization that performed Hazards Assessments used its own methodology with no attempt at standardization. In 1991, DOE published guidelines for the performance of Hazards Assessments for Emergency Planning (DOE-EPG-5500.1, ``Guidance for a Hazards Assessment Methodology``). Subsequently, in 1992, DOE published a standard for the performance of Hazards Assessments (DOE-STD-1027-92, ``Hazard Categorization and Accident Analysis, Techniques for Compliance with DOE Order 5480.23, Nuclear Safety Analysis Reports``). Although these documents are a step in the direction of standardization, there remains a great deal of interpretation and subjective implementation in the performance of Hazards Assessments. Rocky Flats Plant has initiated efforts to develop a uniform and standard process to be used for Hazards Assessments.

  4. Plant species richness and diversity in urban and peri-urban gardens of Niamey, Niger

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Hannah Bernholt; Katja Kehlenbeck; Jens Gebauer; Andreas Buerkert

    2009-01-01

    Urban and peri-urban agriculture (UPA) significantly contributes to food and nutritional security of urban dwellers in many\\u000a African countries. Economic and demographic pressures often lead to transformation of subsistence-oriented traditional homegardens\\u000a into commercial production units. Such transformation is claimed to result in decreasing plant diversity, particularly of\\u000a local species. A study was therefore undertaken in 51 gardens of Niamey, Niger,

  5. An explanation for conflicting records of Triassic–Jurassic plant diversity

    PubMed Central

    Mander, Luke; Kürschner, Wolfram M.; McElwain, Jennifer C.

    2010-01-01

    Macrofossils (mostly leaves) and sporomorphs (pollen and spores) preserve conflicting records of plant biodiversity during the end-Permian (P-Tr), Triassic–Jurassic (Tr-J), and end-Cretaceous (K-T) mass extinctions. Estimates of diversity loss based on macrofossils are typically much higher than estimates of diversity loss based on sporomorphs. Macrofossils from the Tr-J of East Greenland indicate that standing species richness declined by as much as 85% in the Late Triassic, whereas sporomorph records from the same region, and from elsewhere in Europe, reveal little evidence of such catastrophic diversity loss. To understand this major discrepancy, we have used a new high-resolution dataset of sporomorph assemblages from Astartekløft, East Greenland, to directly compare the macrofossil and sporomorph records of Tr-J plant biodiversity. Our results show that sporomorph assemblages from the Tr-J boundary interval are 10–12% less taxonomically diverse than sporomorph assemblages from the Late Triassic, and that vegetation composition changed rapidly in the boundary interval as a result of emigration and/or extirpation of taxa rather than immigration and/or origination of taxa. An analysis of the representation of different plant groups in the macrofossil and sporomorph records at Astartekløft reveals that reproductively specialized plants, including cycads, bennettites and the seed-fern Lepidopteris are almost absent from the sporomorph record. These results provide a means of reconciling the macrofossil and sporomorph records of Tr-J vegetation change, and may help to understand vegetation change during the P-Tr and K-T mass extinctions and around the Paleocene–Eocene Thermal Maximum. PMID:20713737

  6. Plant Community Composition More Predictive than Diversity of Carbon Cycling in Freshwater Wetlands

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Rachel Schultz; Sarah Andrews; Lindsay O’Reilly; Virginie Bouchard; Serita Frey

    Changes in the world’s species composition and the loss of biodiversity have prompted a closer investigation of the importance\\u000a of biodiversity and community composition to ecosystem functioning. However, few studies have explored this relationship outside\\u000a of controlled experiments. Here, we examined the relationship between plant diversity, primary production, and methane efflux\\u000a in freshwater wetlands in an across-site field study and

  7. An explanation for conflicting records of Triassic-Jurassic plant diversity.

    PubMed

    Mander, Luke; Kürschner, Wolfram M; McElwain, Jennifer C

    2010-08-31

    Macrofossils (mostly leaves) and sporomorphs (pollen and spores) preserve conflicting records of plant biodiversity during the end-Permian (P-Tr), Triassic-Jurassic (Tr-J), and end-Cretaceous (K-T) mass extinctions. Estimates of diversity loss based on macrofossils are typically much higher than estimates of diversity loss based on sporomorphs. Macrofossils from the Tr-J of East Greenland indicate that standing species richness declined by as much as 85% in the Late Triassic, whereas sporomorph records from the same region, and from elsewhere in Europe, reveal little evidence of such catastrophic diversity loss. To understand this major discrepancy, we have used a new high-resolution dataset of sporomorph assemblages from Astartekløft, East Greenland, to directly compare the macrofossil and sporomorph records of Tr-J plant biodiversity. Our results show that sporomorph assemblages from the Tr-J boundary interval are 10-12% less taxonomically diverse than sporomorph assemblages from the Late Triassic, and that vegetation composition changed rapidly in the boundary interval as a result of emigration and/or extirpation of taxa rather than immigration and/or origination of taxa. An analysis of the representation of different plant groups in the macrofossil and sporomorph records at Astartekløft reveals that reproductively specialized plants, including cycads, bennettites and the seed-fern Lepidopteris are almost absent from the sporomorph record. These results provide a means of reconciling the macrofossil and sporomorph records of Tr-J vegetation change, and may help to understand vegetation change during the P-Tr and K-T mass extinctions and around the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum. PMID:20713737

  8. Incorporating biodiversity into rangeland health: Plant species richness and diversity in great plains grasslands

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Symstad, A.J.; Jonas, J.L.

    2011-01-01

    Indicators of rangeland health generally do not include a measure of biodiversity. Increasing attention to maintaining biodiversity in rangelands suggests that this omission should be reconsidered, and plant species richness and diversity are two metrics that may be useful and appropriate. Ideally, their response to a variety of anthropogenic and natural drivers in the ecosystem of interest would be clearly understood, thereby providing a means to diagnose the cause of decline in an ecosystem. Conceptual ecological models based on ecological principles and hypotheses provide a framework for this understanding, but these models must be supported by empirical evidence if they are to be used for decision making. To that end, we synthesize results from published studies regarding the responses of plant species richness and diversity to drivers that are of management concern in Great Plains grasslands, one of North America's most imperiled ecosystems. In the published literature, moderate grazing generally has a positive effect on these metrics in tallgrass prairie and a neutral to negative effect in shortgrass prairie. The largest published effects on richness and diversity were caused by moderate grazing in tallgrass prairies and nitrogen fertilization in shortgrass prairies. Although weather is often cited as the reason for considerable annual fluctuations in richness and diversity, little information about the responses of these metrics to weather is available. Responses of the two metrics often diverged, reflecting differences in their sensitivity to different types of changes in the plant community. Although sufficient information has not yet been published for these metrics to meet all the criteria of a good indicator in Great Plains Grasslands, augmenting current methods of evaluating rangeland health with a measure of plant species richness would reduce these shortcomings and provide information critical to managing for biodiversity. ?? Society for Range Management.

  9. Local Plant Diversity Patterns and Evolutionary History at the Regional Scale

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Meelis Partel

    2002-01-01

    The effect of evolutionary history on local-scale diversity patterns has often been suggested, but not shown. I explored whether widely described local-scale relationships between plant species richness and soil pH are related to evolutionary history. I expected positive relationships to occur between richness and pH if the pool of species that is suited for high pH soil is larger than

  10. Assessment of genetic diversity among selected raspberry cultivars

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Genetic markers, Random Amplification of Polymorphic DNA (RAPD), were developed for screening raspberry for cold/heat tolerance. Growing raspberries in southern United States is a challenging task as they are high chill-loving plants. Cultivation of raspberry in Florida is significantly hampered du...

  11. An exposure assessment survey of the Mont Belvieu polyethylene plant 

    E-print Network

    Tucker, Thomas Franklin

    1997-01-01

    Evaluation of ever changing, complex workplaces can be accomplished with a sound, logical exposure assessment survey (EAS). An EAS was conducted at a polyethylene plant located in southeast Texas to determine the risk of adverse health effects...

  12. Life-cycle assessment of wastewater treatment plants

    E-print Network

    Dong, Bo, M. Eng. Massachusetts Institute of Technology

    2012-01-01

    This thesis presents a general model for the carbon footprints analysis of wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs), using a life cycle assessment (LCA) approach. In previous research, the issue of global warming is often related ...

  13. Disentangling the roles of plant diversity and precipitation in structuring microbial community composition and function in a tropical rain forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McGuire, Krista; Treseder, Kathleen; Fierer, Noah; Turner, Benjamin

    2010-05-01

    Shifting frequency and intensity of precipitation events is expected to impact soil fungi through a variety of complex feedbacks, although the general patterns and mechanisms are not fully understood. Precipitation and plant diversity often covary, and disentangling the relative contribution of each is important for predicting changes in global C and N fluxes. In order to test the relative contributions of plant diversity and precipitation in shaping fungal community structure and function, soil samples (0-10cm) from six established 1-ha plots across a natural precipitation gradient on the isthmus of Panama were collected. These plots co-vary in mean annual precipitation and plant diversity. Fungal DNA was sequenced using general fungal primers for the 18S region and 454 pyrosequencing. We found that total fungal taxa significantly increased with increasing mean annual precipitation, but not with plant diversity. Activity for some extracellular enzymes increased, whereas as others decreased with mean annual precipitation, indicating that the effect of shifting precipitation on nutrient transformations may be process-specific. To directly test for effects of plant species richness on fungal diversity and function, we experimentally re-created litter diversity gradients in nylon, 2 mm screen litter bags with 1, 25, and 50 species of plant leaf litter. After six months, we found a significant effect of plant litter diversity on decomposition rate, but only after the increase from one to 25 species of leaf litter. Total fungal taxa as determined by 454 sequencing and extracellular enzyme activity did not track plant species richness, suggesting that precipitation may be a more important factor than plant diversity in structuring soil fungi in tropical rain forests.

  14. Methods for assessing the composition and diversity of soil microbial communities

    Microsoft Academic Search

    G. T. Hill; N. A. Mitkowski; L. Aldrich-Wolfe; L. R. Emele; D. D. Jurkonie; A. Ficke; S. Maldonado-Ramireza; S. T. Lynch; E. B. Nelson

    2000-01-01

    Soil microorganisms play important roles in soil quality and plant productivity. The development of effective methods for studying the diversity, distribution, and behavior of microorganisms in soil habitats is essential for a broader understanding of soil health. Traditionally, the analysis of soil microbial communities has relied on culturing techniques using a variety of culture media designed to maximize the recovery

  15. Assessment of Parameter Uncertainty in Plant Growth Model Identification

    E-print Network

    Boyer, Edmond

    Assessment of Parameter Uncertainty in Plant Growth Model Identification Yuting CHEN, Paul: yuting.chen@ecp.fr Abstract--For the parametric identification of plant growth models, we generally face approach) and the residual variance partly due to the noise models. Keywords-Uncertainty analysis

  16. Nuclear plant service water system aging degradation assessment: Phase 1

    Microsoft Academic Search

    D. B. Jarrell; A. B. Jr. Johnson; P. W. Zimmerman; M. L. Gore

    1989-01-01

    The initial phase of an aging assessment of nuclear power plant service water systems (SWSs) was performed by the Pacific Northwest Laboratory to support the Nuclear Regulatory Commission Nuclear Plant Aging Research (NPAR) program. The SWS was selected for study because of its essential role in the mitigation of and recovery from accident scenarios involving the potential for core-melt. The

  17. Coastal plants : chemical sensitivities and risk assessments

    EPA Science Inventory

    The ability of plant-dominated ecosystems to improve water quality and provide habitat for biodiversity are important ecological services. These services are impacted by natural and anthropogenic stressors which includes contaminant toxicity. Scientific information describing the...

  18. Water treatment plants assessment at Talkha power plant.

    PubMed

    El-Sebaie, Olfat D; Abd El-Kerim, Ghazy E; Ramadan, Mohamed H; Abd El-Atey, Magda M; Taha, Sahr Ahmed

    2002-01-01

    Talkha power plant is the only power plant located in El-Mansoura. It generates electricity using two different methods by steam turbine and gas turbine. Both plants drew water from River Nile (208 m3 /h). The Nile raw water passes through different treatment processes to be suitable for drinking and operational uses. At Talkha power plant, there are two purification plants used for drinking water supply (100 m3/h) and for water demineralization supply (108 m3/h). This study aimed at studying the efficiency of the water purification plants. For drinking water purification plant, the annual River Nile water characterized by slightly alkaline pH (7.4-8), high annual mean values of turbidity (10.06 NTU), Standard Plate Count (SPC) (313.3 CFU/1 ml), total coliform (2717/100 ml), fecal coliform (0-2400/100 ml), and total algae (3 x 10(4) org/I). The dominant group of algae all over the study period was green algae. The blue green algae was abundant in Summer and Autumn seasons. The pH range, and the annual mean values of turbidity, TDS, total hardness, sulfates, chlorides, nitrates, nitrites, fluoride, and residual chlorine for purified water were in compliance with Egyptian drinking water standards. All the SPC recorded values with an annual mean value of 10.13 CFU/1 ml indicated that chlorine dose and contact time were not enough to kill the bacteria. However, they were in compliance with Egyptian decree (should not exceed 50 CFU/1 ml). Although the removal efficiency of the plant for total coliform and blue green algae was high (98.5% and 99.2%, respectively), the limits of the obtained results with an annual mean values of 40/100 ml and 15.6 org/l were not in compliance with the Egyptian decree (should be free from total coliform, fecal coliform and blue green algae). For water demineralization treatment plant, the raw water was characterized by slightly alkaline pH. The annual mean values of conductivity, turbidity, and TDS were 354.6 microS/cm, 10.84 NTU, and 214.6 mg/I, respectively. There was an increase in the results of conductivity, turbidity, total hardness, and TDS in carbon filter effluent which was attributed to the desorption of adsorbed ions on the carbon media. The removal efficiencies of turbidity, total hardness, and TDS indicated the high efficiency of the cationic filter. The annual removal efficiencies of conductivity, turbidity, chloride, and TDS proved the efficiency of the anionic filter for removing the dissolved and suspended ions. All of the recorded values of the pH, conductivity, turbidity, chlorides, hardness, and TDS of the mixed bed effluent indicated that the water at this stage was of high quality for boiler feed. The study recommended adjustment of coagulant and residual chlorine doses as well as contact time, and continuous monitoring and maintenance of the different units. PMID:17216967

  19. Prevalence, distribution, and diversity of Escherichia coli in plants manufacturing goat milk powder in Shaanxi, China.

    PubMed

    Xi, Meili; Feng, Yuqing; Li, Qiong; Yang, Qinnan; Zhang, Baigang; Li, Guanghui; Shi, Chao; Xia, Xiaodong

    2015-04-01

    The aim of the study was to investigate the prevalence, distribution, and diversity of Escherichia coli in goat-milk-powder plants in Shaanxi, China. Three plants manufacturing goat milk powder in Shaanxi province were visited once for sampling during 2012 and 2013. Samples were taken for isolation of E. coli. Isolates were characterized by antimicrobial susceptibility testing and detection of virulence genes. All isolates were further examined by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis analysis. In total, 53 E. coli strains were isolated from 32 positive samples out of 534 samples. Among E. coli isolates, resistance was most frequently observed to trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole (75.5%), whereas all isolates were sensitive to gatifloxacin, kanamycin, amikacin, and amoxicillin-clavulanate. The 6 virulence genes of pathogenic E. coli were not detected. Pulsed-field gel electrophoresis results showed that E. coli strains in plants were genetically diverse and milk storage tank could be an important contamination source. This study could provide useful information for plants manufacturing goat milk powder to establish proper management practices that help minimize the chance of microbial contamination. PMID:25682141

  20. Environmental risk assessment for plant pests: a procedure to evaluate their impacts on ecosystem services.

    PubMed

    Gilioli, G; Schrader, G; Baker, R H A; Ceglarska, E; Kertész, V K; Lövei, G; Navajas, M; Rossi, V; Tramontini, S; van Lenteren, J C

    2014-01-15

    The current methods to assess the environmental impacts of plant pests differ in their approaches and there is a lack of the standardized procedures necessary to provide accurate and consistent results, demonstrating the complexity of developing a commonly accepted scheme for this purpose. By including both the structural and functional components of the environment threatened by invasive alien species (IAS), in particular plant pests, we propose an environmental risk assessment scheme that addresses this complexity. Structural components are investigated by evaluating the impacts of the plant pest on genetic, species and landscape diversity. Functional components are evaluated by estimating how plant pests modify ecosystem services in order to determine the extent to which an IAS changes the functional traits that influence ecosystem services. A scenario study at a defined spatial and temporal resolution is then used to explore how an IAS, as an exogenous driving force, may trigger modifications in the target environment. The method presented here provides a standardized approach to generate comparable and reproducible results for environmental risk assessment as a component of Pest Risk Analysis. The method enables the assessment of overall environmental risk which integrates the impacts on different components of the environment and their probabilities of occurrence. The application of the proposed scheme is illustrated by evaluating the environmental impacts of the invasive citrus long-horn beetle, Anoplophora chinensis. PMID:24051446

  1. Chemical diversity of microbial volatiles and their potential for plant growth and productivity.

    PubMed

    Kanchiswamy, Chidananda Nagamangala; Malnoy, Mickael; Maffei, Massimo E

    2015-01-01

    Microbial volatile organic compounds (MVOCs) are produced by a wide array of microorganisms ranging from bacteria to fungi. A growing body of evidence indicates that MVOCs are ecofriendly and can be exploited as a cost-effective sustainable strategy for use in agricultural practice as agents that enhance plant growth, productivity, and disease resistance. As naturally occurring chemicals, MVOCs have potential as possible alternatives to harmful pesticides, fungicides, and bactericides as well as genetic modification. Recent studies performed under open field conditions demonstrate that efficiently adopting MVOCs may contribute to sustainable crop protection and production. We review here the chemical diversity of MVOCs by describing microbial-plants and microbial-microbial interactions. Furthermore, we discuss MVOCs role in inducing phenotypic plant responses and their potential physiological effects on crops. Finally, we analyze potential and actual limitations for MVOC use and deployment in field conditions as a sustainable strategy for improving productivity and reducing pesticide use. PMID:25821453

  2. Diverse plant and animal genetic records from Holocene and Pleistocene sediments.

    PubMed

    Willerslev, Eske; Hansen, Anders J; Binladen, Jonas; Brand, Tina B; Gilbert, M Thomas P; Shapiro, Beth; Bunce, Michael; Wiuf, Carsten; Gilichinsky, David A; Cooper, Alan

    2003-05-01

    Genetic analyses of permafrost and temperate sediments reveal that plant and animal DNA may be preserved for long periods, even in the absence of obvious macrofossils. In Siberia, five permafrost cores ranging from 400,000 to 10,000 years old contained at least 19 different plant taxa, including the oldest authenticated ancient DNA sequences known, and megafaunal sequences including mammoth, bison, and horse. The genetic data record a number of dramatic changes in the taxonomic diversity and composition of Beringian vegetation and fauna. Temperate cave sediments in New Zealand also yielded DNA sequences of extinct biota, including two species of ratite moa, and 29 plant taxa characteristic of the prehuman environment. Therefore, many sedimentary deposits may contain unique, and widespread, genetic records of paleoenvironments. PMID:12702808

  3. Chemical diversity of microbial volatiles and their potential for plant growth and productivity

    PubMed Central

    Kanchiswamy, Chidananda Nagamangala; Malnoy, Mickael; Maffei, Massimo E.

    2015-01-01

    Microbial volatile organic compounds (MVOCs) are produced by a wide array of microorganisms ranging from bacteria to fungi. A growing body of evidence indicates that MVOCs are ecofriendly and can be exploited as a cost-effective sustainable strategy for use in agricultural practice as agents that enhance plant growth, productivity, and disease resistance. As naturally occurring chemicals, MVOCs have potential as possible alternatives to harmful pesticides, fungicides, and bactericides as well as genetic modification. Recent studies performed under open field conditions demonstrate that efficiently adopting MVOCs may contribute to sustainable crop protection and production. We review here the chemical diversity of MVOCs by describing microbial–plants and microbial–microbial interactions. Furthermore, we discuss MVOCs role in inducing phenotypic plant responses and their potential physiological effects on crops. Finally, we analyze potential and actual limitations for MVOC use and deployment in field conditions as a sustainable strategy for improving productivity and reducing pesticide use. PMID:25821453

  4. Evolutionarily Related Sindbis-Like Plant Viruses Maintain Different Levels of Population Diversity in a Common Host

    Microsoft Academic Search

    WILLIAM L. SCHNEIDER; MARILYN J. ROOSSINCK

    2000-01-01

    The levels of population diversity of three related Sindbis-like plant viruses, Tobacco mosaic virus (TMV), Cucumber mosaic virus (CMV), and Cowpea chlorotic mottle virus (CCMV), in infections of a common host, Nicotiana benthamiana, established from genetically identical viral RNA were examined. Despite probably having a common evolutionary ancestor, the three viruses maintained different levels of population diversity. CMV had the

  5. Microbial diversity in soil: ecological theories, the contribution of molecular techniques and the impact of transgenic plants and transgenic microorganisms

    Microsoft Academic Search

    J. M. Lynch; A. Benedetti; H. Insam; M. P. Nuti; K. Smalla; V. Torsvik; P. Nannipieri

    2004-01-01

    This review mainly discusses three related topics: the application of ecological theories to soil, the measurement of microbial diversity by molecular techniques and the impact of transgenic plants and microorganisms on genetic diversity of soil. These topics were debated at the Meeting on Soil Emergency held in Erice (Trapani, Italy) in 2001 for the celebration of the 50th anniversary of

  6. Land-use impacts on woody plant density and diversity in an African savanna charcoal production region

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Vettes Neckemiah Kalema; Edward T. F. Witkowski

    2012-01-01

    The density and diversity of woody plant species were studied within grazing, cultivation and charcoal production land-use areas in a multiple-use savanna woodland, central Uganda, using 75 plots with an area of 0.1 ha (Whittaker plots). Plant density was significantly higher under charcoal production (7131 ± 755 plants\\/ha) and cultivation (6612 ± 665 plants\\/ha) compared with the grazing lands (4152

  7. Environmental controls on dominance and diversity of woody plant species in a Madrean, Sky Island ecosystem, Arizona, USA

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Helen M. Poulos; Alan H. Taylor; R. Matthew Beaty

    2007-01-01

    The Sky Island archipelagos of the Sierra Madre Occidental contain diverse, highly endemic, and topographically complex ecosystems,\\u000a yet the local and landscape-scale controls on woody plant dominance and diversity patterns are poorly understood. This study\\u000a examines variation in woody plant species composition in relation to a suite of environmental variables (i.e., elevation,\\u000a potential soil moisture, soil type, geologic substrate, and

  8. Genetic Diversity and Host Plant Preferences Revealed by Simple Sequence Repeat and Mitochondrial Markers in a Population of the Arbuscular Mycorrhizal Fungus Glomus intraradices

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Daniel Croll; Lukas Wille; Hannes A. Gamper; Natarajan Mathimaran; Peter J. Lammers; Nicolas Corradi; Ian R. Sanders

    2008-01-01

    Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) are important symbionts of plants that improve plant nutrient acquisition and promote plant diversity. Although within-species genetic differences among AMF have been shown to differentially affect plant growth, very little is actually known about the degree of genetic diversity in AMF populations. This is largely because of difficulties in isolation and cultivation of the fungi in

  9. High plant species diversity indirectly mitigates CO 2- and N-induced effects on grasshopper growth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Strengbom, Joachim; Reich, Peter B.; Ritchie, Mark E.

    2008-09-01

    We examined how elevated atmospheric [CO 2] and higher rate of nitrogen (N) input may influence grasshopper growth by changing food plant quality and how such effects may be modified by species diversity of the plant community. We reared grasshopper nymphs ( Melanoplus femurrubrum) on Poa pratensis from field-grown monocultures or polycultures (16 species) that were subjected to either ambient or elevated levels of CO 2 and N. Grasshopper growth rate was higher on P. pratensis leaves grown in monocultures than in polycultures, higher on P. pratensis grown under elevated than under ambient [CO 2], and higher on P. pratensis grown under elevated than under ambient [N]. The higher growth rate observed on P. pratensis exposed to elevated [CO 2] was, however, less pronounced for polyculture- than monoculture-grown P. pratensis. Growth rate of the grasshoppers was positively correlated with leaf [N], [C], and concentration of soluble carbohydrates + lipids. Concentration of non-structural carbohydrates + lipids was higher in leaves grown under elevated than under ambient [CO 2], and the difference between P. pratensis grown under ambient and elevated [CO 2] was greater for monoculture- than polyculture-grown P. pratensis. In addition, leaf N concentration was higher in P. pratensis grown in monocultures than in polycultures, suggesting that plant species richness, indirectly, may influence insect performance by changed nutritional value of the plants. Because we found interactive effects between all factors included ([CO 2], [N], and plant species diversity), our results suggest that these parameters may influence plant-insect interactions in a complex way that is not predictable from the sum of single factor manipulations.

  10. Congruence and diversity of butterfly-host plant associations at higher taxonomic levels.

    PubMed

    Ferrer-Paris, José R; Sánchez-Mercado, Ada; Viloria, Ángel L; Donaldson, John

    2013-01-01

    We aggregated data on butterfly-host plant associations from existing sources in order to address the following questions: (1) is there a general correlation between host diversity and butterfly species richness?, (2) has the evolution of host plant use followed consistent patterns across butterfly lineages?, (3) what is the common ancestral host plant for all butterfly lineages? The compilation included 44,148 records from 5,152 butterfly species (28.6% of worldwide species of Papilionoidea) and 1,193 genera (66.3%). The overwhelming majority of butterflies use angiosperms as host plants. Fabales is used by most species (1,007 spp.) from all seven butterfly families and most subfamilies, Poales is the second most frequently used order, but is mostly restricted to two species-rich subfamilies: Hesperiinae (56.5% of all Hesperiidae), and Satyrinae (42.6% of all Nymphalidae). We found a significant and strong correlation between host plant diversity and butterfly species richness. A global test for congruence (Parafit test) was sensitive to uncertainty in the butterfly cladogram, and suggests a mixed system with congruent associations between Papilionidae and magnoliids, Hesperiidae and monocots, and the remaining subfamilies with the eudicots (fabids and malvids), but also numerous random associations. The congruent associations are also recovered as the most probable ancestral states in each node using maximum likelihood methods. The shift from basal groups to eudicots appears to be more likely than the other way around, with the only exception being a Satyrine-clade within the Nymphalidae that feed on monocots. Our analysis contributes to the visualization of the complex pattern of interactions at superfamily level and provides a context to discuss the timing of changes in host plant utilization that might have promoted diversification in some butterfly lineages. PMID:23717448

  11. Plant diversity does not buffer drought effects on early-stage litter mass loss rates and microbial properties.

    PubMed

    Vogel, Anja; Eisenhauer, Nico; Weigelt, Alexandra; Scherer-Lorenzen, Michael

    2013-09-01

    Human activities are decreasing biodiversity and changing the climate worldwide. Both global change drivers have been shown to affect ecosystem functioning, but they may also act in concert in a non-additive way. We studied early-stage litter mass loss rates and soil microbial properties (basal respiration and microbial biomass) during the summer season in response to plant species richness and summer drought in a large grassland biodiversity experiment, the Jena Experiment, Germany. In line with our expectations, decreasing plant diversity and summer drought decreased litter mass loss rates and soil microbial properties. In contrast to our hypotheses, however, this was only true for mass loss of standard litter (wheat straw) used in all plots, and not for plant community-specific litter mass loss. We found no interactive effects between global change drivers, that is, drought reduced litter mass loss rates and soil microbial properties irrespective of plant diversity. High mass loss rates of plant community-specific litter and low responsiveness to drought relative to the standard litter indicate that soil microbial communities were adapted to decomposing community-specific plant litter material including lower susceptibility to dry conditions during summer months. Moreover, higher microbial enzymatic diversity at high plant diversity may have caused elevated mass loss of standard litter. Our results indicate that plant diversity loss and summer drought independently impede soil processes. However, soil decomposer communities may be highly adapted to decomposing plant community-specific litter material, even in situations of environmental stress. Results of standard litter mass loss moreover suggest that decomposer communities under diverse plant communities are able to cope with a greater variety of plant inputs possibly making them less responsive to biotic changes. PMID:23606531

  12. Plant-Species Diversity Correlates with Genetic Variation of an Oligophagous Seed Predator

    PubMed Central

    Laukkanen, Liisa; Mutikainen, Pia; Muola, Anne; Leimu, Roosa

    2014-01-01

    Several characteristics of habitats of herbivores and their food-plant communities, such as plant-species composition and plant quality, influence population genetics of both herbivores and their host plants. We investigated how different ecological and geographic factors affect genetic variation in and differentiation of 23 populations of the oligophagous seed predator Lygaeus equestris (Heteroptera) in southwestern Finland and in eastern Sweden. We tested whether genetic differentiation of the L. equestris populations was related to the similarity of vegetation, and whether there was more within-population genetic variation in habitats with a high number of plant species or in those with a large population of the primary food plant, Vincetoxicum hirundinaria. We also tested whether genetic differentiation of the populations was related to the geographic distance, and whether location of the populations on islands or on mainland, island size, or population size affected within-population genetic variation. Pairwise FST ranged from 0 to 0.1 indicating low to moderate genetic differentiation of populations. Differentiation increased with geographic distance between the populations, but was not related to the similarity of vegetation between the habitats. Genetic variation within the L. equestris populations did not increase with the population size of the primary food plant. However, the more diverse the plant community the higher was the level of genetic variation within the L. equestris population. Furthermore, the level of genetic variation did not vary significantly between island and mainland populations. The effect of the population size on within-population genetic variation was related to island size. Usually small populations are susceptible to loss of genetic variation, but small L. equestris populations on large islands seemed to maintain a relatively high level of within-population genetic variation. Our findings suggest that, in addition to geographic and species-specific ecological factors, the plant community affects population genetic structure of oligophagous herbivores. PMID:24728342

  13. Beta Diversity of Plant-Pollinator Networks and the Spatial Turnover of Pairwise Interactions

    PubMed Central

    Carstensen, Daniel W.; Sabatino, Malena; Trøjelsgaard, Kristian; Morellato, Leonor Patricia C.

    2014-01-01

    Interactions between species form complex networks that vary across space and time. Even without spatial or temporal constraints mutualistic pairwise interactions may vary, or rewire, across space but this variability is not well understood. Here, we quantify the beta diversity of species and interactions and test factors influencing the probability of turnover of pairwise interactions across space. We ask: 1) whether beta diversity of plants, pollinators, and interactions follow a similar trend across space, and 2) which interaction properties and site characteristics are related to the probability of turnover of pairwise interactions. Geographical distance was positively correlated with plant and interaction beta diversity. We find that locally frequent interactions are more consistent across space and that local flower abundance is important for the realization of pairwise interactions. While the identity of pairwise interactions is highly variable across space, some species-pairs form interactions that are locally frequent and spatially consistent. Such interactions represent cornerstones of interacting communities and deserve special attention from ecologists and conservation planners alike. PMID:25384058

  14. Genetic roadmap of the Arctic: plant dispersal highways, traffic barriers and capitals of diversity.

    PubMed

    Eidesen, Pernille Bronken; Ehrich, Dorothee; Bakkestuen, Vegar; Alsos, Inger Greve; Gilg, Oliver; Taberlet, Pierre; Brochmann, Christian

    2013-11-01

    We provide the first comparative multispecies analysis of spatial genetic structure and diversity in the circumpolar Arctic using a common strategy for sampling and genetic analyses. We aimed to identify and explain potential general patterns of genetic discontinuity/connectivity and diversity, and to compare our findings with previously published hypotheses. We collected and analyzed 7707 samples of 17 widespread arctic-alpine plant species for amplified fragment length polymorphisms (AFLPs). Genetic structure, diversity and distinctiveness were analyzed for each species, and extrapolated to cover the geographic range of each species. The resulting maps were overlaid to produce metamaps. The Arctic and Atlantic Oceans, the Greenlandic ice cap, the Urals, and lowland areas between southern mountain ranges and the Arctic were the strongest barriers against gene flow. Diversity was highest in Beringia and gradually decreased into formerly glaciated areas. The highest degrees of distinctiveness were observed in Siberia. We conclude that large-scale general patterns exist in the Arctic, shaped by the Pleistocene glaciations combined with long-standing physical barriers against gene flow. Beringia served as both refugium and source for interglacial (re)colonization, whereas areas further west in Siberia served as refugia, but less as sources for (re)colonization. PMID:23869846

  15. General stabilizing effects of plant diversity on grassland productivity through population asynchrony and overyielding.

    PubMed

    Hector, A; Hautier, Y; Saner, P; Wacker, L; Bagchi, R; Joshi, J; Scherer-Lorenzen, M; Spehn, E M; Bazeley-White, E; Weilenmann, M; Caldeira, M C; Dimitrakopoulos, P G; Finn, J A; Huss-Danell, K; Jumpponen, A; Mulder, C P H; Palmborg, C; Pereira, J S; Siamantziouras, A S D; Terry, A C; Troumbis, A Y; Schmid, B; Loreau, M

    2010-08-01

    Insurance effects of biodiversity can stabilize the functioning of multispecies ecosystems against environmental variability when differential species' responses lead to asynchronous population dynamics. When responses are not perfectly positively correlated, declines in some populations are compensated by increases in others, smoothing variability in ecosystem productivity. This variance reduction effect of biodiversity is analogous to the risk-spreading benefits of diverse investment portfolios in financial markets. We use data from the BIODEPTH network of grassland biodiversity experiments to perform a general test for stabilizing effects of plant diversity on the temporal variability of individual species, functional groups, and aggregate communities. We tested three potential mechanisms: reduction of temporal variability through population asynchrony; enhancement of long-term average performance through positive selection effects; and increases in the temporal mean due to overyielding. Our results support a stabilizing effect of diversity on the temporal variability of grassland aboveground annual net primary production through two mechanisms. Two-species communities with greater population asynchrony were more stable in their average production over time due to compensatory fluctuations. Overyielding also stabilized productivity by increasing levels of average biomass production relative to temporal variability. However, there was no evidence for a performance-enhancing effect on the temporal mean through positive selection effects. In combination with previous work, our results suggest that stabilizing effects of diversity on community productivity through population asynchrony and overyielding appear to be general in grassland ecosystems. PMID:20836442

  16. Diversity and functionality of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi in three plant communities in semiarid Grasslands National Park, Canada.

    PubMed

    Yang, Chao; Hamel, Chantal; Schellenberg, Michael P; Perez, Juan C; Berbara, Ricardo L

    2010-05-01

    Septate endophytes proliferating in the roots of grasslands' plants shed doubts on the importance of arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) symbioses in dry soils. The functionality and diversity of the AM symbioses formed in four replicates of three adjacent plant communities (agricultural, native, and restored) in Grasslands National Park, Canada were assessed in periods of moisture sufficiency and deficiency typical of early and late summer in the region. The community structure of AM fungi, as determined by polymerase chain reaction-denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis, varied with sampling time and plant community. Soil properties other than soil moisture did not change significantly with sampling time. The DNA sequences dominating AM extraradical networks in dry soil apparently belonged to rare taxa unreported in GenBank. DNA sequences of Glomus viscosum, Glomus mosseae, and Glomus hoi were dominant under conditions of moisture sufficiency. In total, nine different AM fungal sequences were found suggesting a role for the AM symbioses in semiarid areas. Significant positive linear relationships between plant P and N concentrations and active extraradical AM fungal biomass, estimated by the abundance of the phospholipid fatty acid marker 16:1 omega 5, existed under conditions of moisture sufficiency, but not under dry conditions. Active extraradical AM fungal biomass had significantly positive linear relationship with the abundance of two early season grasses, Agropyron cristatum (L.) Gaertn. and Koeleria gracilis Pers., but no relationship was found under dry conditions. The AM symbioses formed under conditions of moisture sufficiency typical of early summer at this location appear to be important for the nutrition of grassland plant communities, but no evidence of mutualism was found under the dry conditions of late summer. PMID:20082070

  17. UNPALATABLE PLANTS PROTECT NEIGHBORS FROM GRAZING AND INCREASE PLANT COMMUNITY DIVERSITY

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Ragan M. Callaway; David Kikodze; Marina Chiboshvili; Liana Khetsuriani

    2005-01-01

    2 Institute of Botany of the Georgian Academy of Sciences, 1 Kojori Road, 380007, Tbilisi, Georgia Abstract. Tasty plants can be protected from herbivores by unpalatable neighbors. We used experimental exclosures, removal of unpalatable species, and transplants of palatable and unpalatable species in subalpine meadows of the Caucasus Mountains of Georgia to study the effects of two unpalatable species on

  18. B Plant low level waste system integrity assessment report

    SciTech Connect

    Walter, E.J.

    1995-09-01

    This document provides the report of the integrity assessment activities for the B Plant low level waste system. The assessment activities were in response to requirements of the Washington State Dangerous Waste Regulations, Washington Administrative Code (WAC), 173-303-640. This integrity assessment report supports compliance with Hanford Federal Facility Agreement and Consent Order interim milestone target action M-32-07-T03.

  19. Assess and control HPI plant noise

    Microsoft Academic Search

    1977-01-01

    Because of the introduction of a code of practice in the U.K. for reducing the exposure of employed persons to noise, a new hearing conservation program was initiated at the Gulf Oil Refining, Ltd., plant in Milford Haven, South Wales. Noise survey and protection action are described. As part of a daily routine, a subjective evaluation of noise is done

  20. Marine Macroalgal Diversity Assessment of Saba Bank, Netherlands Antilles

    PubMed Central

    Littler, Mark M.; Littler, Diane S.; Brooks, Barrett L.

    2010-01-01

    Background Located in the Dutch Windward Islands, Saba Bank is a flat-topped seamount (20–45 m deep in the shallower regions). The primary goals of the survey were to improve knowledge of biodiversity for one of the world's most significant, but little-known, seamounts and to increase basic data and analyses to promote the development of an improved management plan. Methodology/Principal Findings Our team of three divers used scuba to collect algal samples to depths of 50 m at 17 dive sites. Over 360 macrophyte specimens (12 putative new species) were collected, more than 1,000 photographs were taken in truly exceptional habitats, and three astonishing new seaweed community types were discovered. These included: (1) “Field of Greens” (N 17°30.620?, W 63°27.707?) dominated by green seaweeds as well as some filamentous reds, (2) “Brown Town” (N 17°28.027?, W 63°14.944?) dominated by large brown algae, and (3) “Seaweed City” (N 17°26.485?, W 63°16.850?) with a diversity of spectacular fleshy red algae. Conclusions/Significance Dives to 30 m in the more two-dimensional interior habitats revealed particularly robust specimens of algae typical of shallower seagrass beds, but here in the total absence of any seagrasses (seagrasses generally do not grow below 20 m). Our preliminary estimate of the number of total seaweed species on Saba Bank ranges from a minimum of 150 to 200. Few filamentous and thin sheet forms indicative of stressed or physically disturbed environments were observed. A more precise number still awaits further microscopic and molecular examinations in the laboratory. The expedition, while intensive, has only scratched the surface of this unique submerged seamount/atoll. PMID:20505757

  1. Assessment of diversity indices for the characterization of the soil prokaryotic community by metagenomic analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chernov, T. I.; Tkhakakhova, A. K.; Kutovaya, O. V.

    2015-04-01

    The diversity indices used in ecology for assessing the metagenomes of soil prokaryotic communities at different phylogenetic levels were compared. The following indices were considered: the number of detected taxa and the Shannon, Menhinick, Margalef, Simpson, Chao1, and ACE indices. The diversity analysis of the prokaryotic communities in the upper horizons of a typical chernozem (Haplic Chernozem (Pachic)), a dark chestnut soil (Haplic Kastanozem (Chromic)), and an extremely arid desert soil (Endosalic Calcisol (Yermic)) was based on the analysis of 16S rRNA genes. The Menhinick, Margalef, Chao1, and ACE indices gave similar results for the classification of the communities according to their diversity levels; the Simpson index gave good results only for the high-level taxa (phyla); the best results were obtained with the Shannon index. In general, all the indices used showed a decrease in the diversity of the soil prokaryotes in the following sequence: chernozem > dark chestnut soil > extremely arid desert soil.

  2. Diversity of Maize Shoot Apical Meristem Architecture and Its Relationship to Plant Morphology

    PubMed Central

    Thompson, Addie M.; Yu, Jianming; Timmermans, Marja C. P.; Schnable, Patrick; Crants, James C.; Scanlon, Michael J.; Muehlbauer, Gary J.

    2015-01-01

    The shoot apical meristem contains a pool of undifferentiated stem cells and controls initiation of all aerial plant organs. In maize (Zea mays), leaves are formed throughout vegetative development; on transition to floral development, the shoot meristem forms the tassel. Due to the regulated balance between stem cell maintenance and organogenesis, the structure and morphology of the shoot meristem are constrained during vegetative development. Previous work identified loci controlling meristem architecture in a recombinant inbred line population. The study presented here expanded on this by investigating shoot apical meristem morphology across a diverse set of maize inbred lines. Crosses of these lines to common parents showed varying phenotypic expression in the F1, with some form of heterosis occasionally observed. An investigation of meristematic growth throughout vegetative development in diverse lines linked the timing of reproductive transition to flowering time. Phenotypic correlations of meristem morphology with adult plant traits showed an association between the meristem and flowering time, leaf shape, and yield traits, revealing links between the control and architecture of undifferentiated and differentiated plant organs. Finally, quantitative trait loci mapping was utilized to map the genetic architecture of these meristem traits in two divergent populations. Control of meristem architecture was mainly population-specific, with 15 total unique loci mapped across the two populations with only one locus identified in both populations. PMID:25748433

  3. Spatiotemporal patterns of induced resistance and susceptibility linking diverse plant parasites.

    PubMed

    Mouttet, Raphaëlle; Kaplan, Ian; Bearez, Philippe; Amiens-Desneux, Edwige; Desneux, Nicolas

    2013-12-01

    Induced defenses mediate interactions between parasites sharing the same host plant, but the outcomes of these interactions are challenging to predict because of spatiotemporal variation in plant responses and differences in defense pathways elicited by herbivores or pathogens. Dissecting these mediating factors necessitates an approach that encompasses a diversity of parasitic feeding styles and tracks interactions over space and time. We tested indirect plant-mediated relationships across three tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) consumers: (1) the fungal pathogen-powdery mildew, Oidium neolycopersici; (2) a sap-feeding insect-silverleaf whitefly, Bemisia tabaci; and (3) a chewing insect-the leaf miner, Tuta absoluta. Further, we evaluated insect/pathogen responses on local vs. systemic leaves and over short (1 day) vs. long (4 days) time scales. Overall, we documented: (1) a bi-directional negative effect between O. neolycopersici and B. tabaci; (2) an asymmetrical negative effect of B. tabaci on T. absoluta; and (3) an asymmetrical positive effect of T. absoluta on O. neolycopersici. Spatiotemporal patterns varied depending on the species pair (e.g., whitefly effects on leaf miner performance were highly localized to the induced leaf, whereas effects on pathogen growth were both local and systemic). These results highlight the context-dependent effects of induced defenses on a diverse community of tomato parasites. Notably, the outcomes correspond to those predicted by phytohormonal theory based on feeding guild differences with key implications for the recent European invasion by T. absoluta. PMID:23851986

  4. Diversity and regulation of plant Ca2+ pumps: insights from expression in yeast

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sze, H.; Liang, F.; Hwang, I.; Curran, A. C.; Harper, J. F.; Evans, M. L. (Principal Investigator)

    2000-01-01

    The spatial and temporal regulation of calcium concentration in plant cells depends on the coordinate activities of channels and active transporters located on different organelles and membranes. Several Ca2+ pumps have been identified and characterized by functional expression of plant genes in a yeast mutant (K616). This expression system has opened the way to a genetic and biochemical characterization of the regulatory and catalytic features of diverse Ca2+ pumps. Plant Ca(2+)-ATPases fall into two major types: AtECA1 represents one of four or more members of the type IIA (ER-type) Ca(2+)-ATPases in Arabidopsis, and AtACA2 is one of seven or more members of the type IIB (PM-type) Ca(2+)-ATPases that are regulated by a novel amino terminal domain. Type IIB pumps are widely distributed on membranes, including the PM (plasma membrane), vacuole, and ER (endoplasmic reticulum). The regulatory domain serves multiple functions, including autoinhibition, calmodulin binding, and sites for modification by phosphorylation. This domain, however, is considerably diverse among several type IIB ATPases, suggesting that the pumps are differentially regulated. Understanding of Ca2+ transporters at the molecular level is providing insights into their roles in signaling networks and in regulating fundamental processes of cell biology.

  5. Plant-animal diversity relationships in a rocky intertidal system depend on invertebrate body size and algal cover.

    PubMed

    Best, Rebecca J; Chaudoin, Ambre L; Bracken, Matthew E S; Graham, Michael H; Stachowicz, John J

    2014-05-01

    Considerable research has examined the influence of herbivores on the maintenance of plant diversity, but fewer studies have examined the reciprocal effect of plant diversity on the animals that use the plant community for food and shelter, particularly in marine systems. Several mechanisms could underlie such effects. Animal diversity and abundance could be increased by complementary use of different plants by different animals, or by an indirect effect of plant diversity on plant production that results in more total plant biomass in high plant-diversity communities. Alternatively, plant species identity could play a dominant role leading to sampling effects or no effect of diversity at all. We conducted a six-year field manipulation of the richness of rocky shore seaweeds in northern California and measured the effects of algal richness and identity on the invertebrate community, from meiofauna to macrofauna. We found that diverse algal communities hosted more species of both large and small invertebrates than the average algal monoculture but that the mechanisms underlying this pattern differed substantially for organisms of different size. More species of macrofauna occurred in the polycultures than in any of the monocultures, likely due to the greater total cover of algae produced in polycultures. Rare and common macrofaunal taxa responded to host plant species richness in opposite ways, with more occurrences of rare taxa and lower abundance of very common taxa in the polycultures. In contrast, meiofaunal richness in polycultures was no different than that of monocultures of finely branched species, leading to strong effects of algal identity. Our findings are similar to those from terrestrial systems in that the effects of plant diversity we observed were most related to the greater amount of habitat in polycultures as a result of overyielding in algal biomass. However, our findings differ from those in terrestrial systems in that the primary mechanisms for both richness and identity effects appear related to the value of plants as shelter from harsh abiotic conditions or predation rather than food, and in that animal body size altered the mechanisms underlying diversity effects. PMID:25000762

  6. Organic Farming and Landscape Structure: Effects on Insect-Pollinated Plant Diversity in Intensively Managed Grasslands

    PubMed Central

    Power, Eileen F.; Kelly, Daniel L.; Stout, Jane C.

    2012-01-01

    Parallel declines in insect-pollinated plants and their pollinators have been reported as a result of agricultural intensification. Intensive arable plant communities have previously been shown to contain higher proportions of self-pollinated plants compared to natural or semi-natural plant communities. Though intensive grasslands are widespread, it is not known whether they show similar patterns to arable systems nor whether local and/or landscape factors are influential. We investigated plant community composition in 10 pairs of organic and conventional dairy farms across Ireland in relation to the local and landscape context. Relationships between plant groups and local factors (farming system, position in field and soil parameters) and landscape factors (e.g. landscape complexity) were investigated. The percentage cover of unimproved grassland was used as an inverse predictor of landscape complexity, as it was negatively correlated with habitat-type diversity. Intensive grasslands (organic and conventional) contained more insect-pollinated forbs than non-insect pollinated forbs. Organic field centres contained more insect-pollinated forbs than conventional field centres. Insect-pollinated forb richness in field edges (but not field centres) increased with increasing landscape complexity (% unimproved grassland) within 1, 3, 4 and 5km radii around sites, whereas non-insect pollinated forb richness was unrelated to landscape complexity. Pollination systems within intensive grassland communities may be different from those in arable systems. Our results indicate that organic management increases plant richness in field centres, but that landscape complexity exerts strong influences in both organic and conventional field edges. Insect-pollinated forb richness, unlike that for non-insect pollinated forbs, showed positive relationships to landscape complexity reflecting what has been documented for bees and other pollinators. The insect-pollinated forbs, their pollinators and landscape context are clearly linked. This needs to be taken into account when managing and conserving insect-pollinated plant and pollinator communities. PMID:22666450

  7. A structural equation model analysis of postfire plant diversity in California shrublands.

    PubMed

    Grace, James B; Keeley, Jon E

    2006-04-01

    This study investigates patterns of plant diversity following wildfires in fire-prone shrublands of California, seeks to understand those patterns in terms of both local and landscape factors, and considers the implications for fire management. Ninety study sites were established following extensive wildfires in 1993, and 1000-m(2) plots were used to sample a variety of parameters. Data on community responses were collected for five years following fire. Structural equation modeling (SEM) was used to relate plant species richness to plant abundance, fire severity, abiotic conditions, within-plot heterogeneity, stand age, and position in the landscape. Temporal dynamics of average richness response was also modeled. Richness was highest in the first year following fire, indicating postfire enhancement of diversity. A general decline in richness over time was detected, with year-to-year variation attributable to annual variations in precipitation. Peak richness in the landscape was found where (1) plant abundance was moderately high, (2) within-plot heterogeneity was high, (3) soils were moderately low in nitrogen, high in sand content, and with high rock cover, (4) fire severity was low, and (5) stands were young prior to fire. Many of these characteristics were correlated with position in the landscape and associated conditions. We infer from the SEM results that postfire richness in this system is strongly influenced by local conditions and that these conditions are, in turn, predictably related to landscape-level conditions. For example, we observed that older stands of shrubs were characterized by more severe fires, which were associated with a low recovery of plant cover and low richness. These results may have implications for the use of prescribed fire in this system if these findings extrapolate to prescribed burns as we would expect. PMID:16711040

  8. Plant diversity effects on leaching of nitrate, ammonium, and dissolved organic nitrogen from an experimental grassland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leimer, Sophia; Oelmann, Yvonne; Wirth, Christian; Wilcke, Wolfgang

    2014-05-01

    Leaching of nitrogen (N) from soil represents a resource loss and, in particular leaching of nitrate, can threaten drinking water quality. As plant diversity leads to a more exhaustive resource use, we investigated the effects of plant species richness, functional group richness, and the presence of specific functional groups on nitrate, ammonium, dissolved organic N (DON), and total dissolved N (TDN) leaching from an experimental grassland in the first 4 years after conversion from fertilized arable land to unfertilized grassland. The experiment is located in Jena, Germany, and consists of 82 plots with 1, 2, 4, 8, 16, or 60 plant species and 1-4 functional groups (legumes, grasses, non-leguminous tall herbs, non-leguminous small herbs). Nitrate, ammonium, and TDN concentrations in soil solution in the 0-0.3 m soil layer were measured every second week during 4 years on 62 plots and DON concentrations were calculated as difference between TDN and inorganic N. Missing concentrations in soil solution were estimated using a Bayesian statistical model. Downward water fluxes (DF) per plot from the 0-0.3 m soil layer were simulated in weekly resolution with a water balance model in connection with a Bayesian model for simulating missing soil water content measurements. To obtain annual nitrate, ammonium, and DON leaching from the 0-0.3 m soil layer per plot, we multiplied the respective concentrations in soil solution with DF and aggregated the data to annual sums. TDN leaching resulted from summation of nitrate, ammonium, and DON leaching. DON leaching contributed most to TDN leaching, particularly in plots without legumes. Dissolved inorganic N leaching in this grassland was dominated by nitrate. The amount of annual ammonium leaching was small and little influenced by plant diversity. Species richness affected DON leaching only in the fourth and last investigated year, possibly because of a delayed soil biota effect that increased microbial transformation of organic N to inorganic N in species-rich mixtures or because of complementary resource use of amino-acid DON of species-rich mixtures. Nitrate and TDN leaching generally decreased with increasing species richness likely because of more exhaustive resource use of more diverse plant mixtures. Functional group richness did not have a significant effect on nitrate, ammonium, DON, and TDN leaching. Legumes increased and grasses decreased nitrate, DON, and TDN leaching because of their N-fixing ability and their extensive rooting system, respectively. TDN leaching was highest in the first year after conversion from arable to grassland which can be related to former fertilization. Quantitative differences in nitrate leaching between plant diversity treatments were also highest in the first year after conversion. However, the percentage reduction of nitrate leaching by species richness, the presence of grasses, or the presence of small herbs increased with time since land-use change possibly because of a strengthening of diversity effects with time. We conclude that especially shortly after land-use change from fertilized arable land to unfertilized grassland, N leaching, in particular nitrate leaching, can be reduced considerably if highly diverse mixtures without legumes are established.

  9. Multiscale sampling of plant diversity: Effects of minimum mapping unit size

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Stohlgren, T.J.; Chong, G.W.; Kalkhan, M.A.; Schell, L.D.

    1997-01-01

    Only a small portion of any landscape can be sampled for vascular plant diversity because of constraints of cost (salaries, travel time between sites, etc.). Often, the investigator decides to reduce the cost of creating a vegetation map by increasing the minimum mapping unit (MMU), and/or by reducing the number of vegetation classes to be considered. Questions arise about what information is sacrificed when map resolution is decreased. We compared plant diversity patterns from vegetation maps made with 100-ha, 50-ha, 2-ha, and 0.02-ha MMUs in a 754-ha study area in Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado, United States, using four 0.025-ha and 21 0.1-ha multiscale vegetation plots. We developed and tested species-log(area) curves, correcting the curves for within-vegetation type heterogeneity with Jaccard's coefficients. Total species richness in the study area was estimated from vegetation maps at each resolution (MMU), based on the corrected species-area curves, total area of the vegetation type, and species overlap among vegetation types. With the 0.02-ha MMU, six vegetation types were recovered, resulting in an estimated 552 species (95% CI = 520-583 species) in the 754-ha study area (330 plant species were observed in the 25 plots). With the 2-ha MMU, five vegetation types were recognized, resulting in an estimated 473 species for the study area. With the 50-ha MMU, 439 plant species were estimated for the four vegetation types recognized in the study area. With the 100-ha MMU, only three vegetation types were recognized, resulting in an estimated 341 plant species for the study area. Locally rare species and keystone ecosystems (areas of high or unique plant diversity) were missed at the 2-ha, 50-ha, and 100-ha scales. To evaluate the effects of minimum mapping unit size requires: (1) an initial stratification of homogeneous, heterogeneous, and rare habitat types; and (2) an evaluation of within-type and between-type heterogeneity generated by environmental gradients and other factors. We suggest that at least some portions of vegetation maps created at a coarser level of resolution be validated at a higher level of resolution.

  10. Technical Assistance Document for Assessment and Evaluation of Preschool Children Who Are Culturally and Linguistically Diverse.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Flores, Jeff; Lopez, Eric J.; De Leon, Jozi

    This manual presents New Mexico state guidelines for the assessment and evaluation of preschool children who are culturally and linguistically diverse, and focuses on the principles of parent participation and nondiscriminatory evaluation as defined in the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and the New Mexico Administrative Codes. A…

  11. Looking Deeper than the Gradebook: Assessing Cultural Diversity Attitudes among Undergraduates

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lake, Robert; Rittschof, Kent

    2012-01-01

    Identification of college students' attitudes about diversity issues is an important part of the assessment of student development across many fields of study. This article discusses an action research approach and classroom application strategies stemming from a survey of 88 pre-service teacher candidates on their attitudes toward homosexuality,…

  12. Genetic Diversity of Lablab (L. purpureus) Germplasm Assessed by SSR Markers

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The genetic diversity of the USDA Lablab purpureus germplasm collection is unknown and was assessed by using polymorphic simple sequence repeat (SSR) markers derived from Medicago, soybean and cowpea. Phylogenetic analysis partitioned 47 representative accessions into two main clades (wild clade pr...

  13. Genetic diversity assessment of Saccharum species and elite cultivars from China using SSR markers

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Genetic diversity amongst 52 sugarcane clones including Saccharum species and cultivars (used for breeding and commercial production since the beginning of 20th century) has been assessed using 21 Simple Sequence Repeat (SSR) markers and capillary electrophoresis (CE) technique. Use of 21 SSR primer...

  14. Assessing the Crossdisciplinarity of Technology-Enhanced Learning with Science Overlay Maps and Diversity Measures

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kalz, Marco; Specht, Marcus

    2014-01-01

    This paper deals with the assessment of the crossdisciplinarity of technology-enhanced learning (TEL). Based on a general discussion of the concept interdisciplinarity and a summary of the discussion in the field, two empirical methods from scientometrics are introduced and applied. Science overlay maps and the Rao-Stirling diversity index are…

  15. GENETIC DIVERSITY OF CROTOLARIA GERMPLASM ASSESSED THROGH PHYLOGENETIC ANALYSIS OF EST-SSR MARKERS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The genus Crotolaria comprises a large number of species, many of which have economic value. An assessment of genetic diversity of the Crotolaria germplasm is lacking. Polymorphic expressed sequence tag - simple sequence repeat (EST-SSR) markers derived from Medicago and soybean were used to asses...

  16. Teacher Preparation for Culturally Diverse Classrooms: Performance-Based Assessment of Beginning Teachers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Daunic, Ann P.; Correa, Vivian I.; Reyes-Blanes, Maria E.

    2004-01-01

    To respond to an increasingly diverse student population, educators need to evaluate how well teacher education programs prepare graduates in culturally responsive teaching (CRT). In this study, we used a performance-based assessment to determine whether (a) different levels of preservice preparation in CRT and (b) preparation in special versus…

  17. Representative Benchmark Suites for Barrier Heights of Diverse Reaction Types and Assessment of Electronic

    E-print Network

    Truhlar, Donald G

    Representative Benchmark Suites for Barrier Heights of Diverse Reaction Types and Assessment #12;Abstract We propose three small sets of barrier heights for heavy-atom transfer, nucleophilic. Each data set consists of 6 barrier heights; we call these small benchmark suites HATBH6, NSBH6

  18. STRATEGIC ENVIRONMENT ASSESSMENT AND BIOLOGICAL DIVERSITY CONSERVATION IN THE KOREAN HIGH-SPEED RAILWAY PROJECT

    Microsoft Academic Search

    SANG DON LEE

    2005-01-01

    Biological diversity (biodiversity) is an essential issue in conservation and environmental impact assessment (EIA). Though Korea is relatively small, the country harbours over 29,800 species, making biodiversity and ecosystem conservation a central issue when an EIA is undertaken during development site selection. Indeed, an unfavourable biodiversity evaluation can halt a proposed or in-progress development, creating a societal conflict between conservationists

  19. Practicum Assessment of Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Early Childhood Pre-Service Teachers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nuttall, Joce; Ortlipp, Michelle

    2012-01-01

    The practicum is an integral component of teacher education courses, but culturally and linguistically diverse pre-service teachers can face particular struggles in meeting assessment requirements on the practicum in early childhood settings. This paper reports from a small, exploratory study of early childhood practicum handbooks from four…

  20. Using Information Theory to Assess the Diversity, Complexity, and Development of Communicative Repertoires

    E-print Network

    McCowan, Brenda

    Using Information Theory to Assess the Diversity, Complexity, and Development of Communicative measures with respect to behavioral ecology. Information theory, developed by Shannon (Shannon & Weaver of the idea that all communica- tion occurs in a noisy channel, information theory both predicts

  1. Assessing Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Students: A Practical Guide. Practical Intervention in the Schools Series

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rhodes, Robert L.; Ochoa, Salvador Hector; Ortiz, Samuel O.

    2005-01-01

    This is the first book to present a practical, problem-solving approach and hands-on tools and techniques for assessing English-language learners and culturally diverse students in K-12 settings. It meets a crucial need among practitioners and special educators working in today's schools. Provided are research-based, step-by-step procedures for…

  2. Assessing genetic structure and diversity of airborne bacterial communities by DNA fingerprinting and 16S rDNA clone library

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maron, Pierre-Alain; Lejon, David P. H.; Carvalho, Esmeralda; Bizet, Karine; Lemanceau, Philippe; Ranjard, Lionel; Mougel, Christophe

    The density, genetic structure and diversity of airborne bacterial communities were assessed in the outdoor atmosphere. Two air samples were collected on the same location (north of France) at two dates (March 2003 (sample1) and May 2003 (sample 2)). Molecular culture -independent methods were used to characterise airborne bacterial communities regardless of the cell culturability. The automated-ribosomal intergenic spacer analysis (A-RISA) was performed to characterise the community structure in each sample. For both sampling dates, complex A-RISA patterns were observed suggesting a highly diverse community structure, comparable to those found in soil, water or sediment environments. Furthermore, differences in the genetic structure of airborne bacterial communities were observed between samples 1 and 2 suggesting an important variability in time. A clone library of 16S rDNA directly amplified from air DNA of sample 1 was constructed and sequenced to analyse the community composition and diversity. The Proteobacteria group had the greatest representation (60%), with bacteria belonging to the different subdivisions ?- (19%), ?-(21%), ?-(12%) and ?-(8%). Firmicute and Actinobacteria were also well represented with 14% and 12%, respectively. Most of the identified bacteria are known to be commonly associated with soil or plant environments suggesting that the atmosphere is mainly colonised transiently by microorganisms from local sources, depending on air fluxes.

  3. Genetic diversity and symbiotic compatibility among rhizobial strains and Desmodium incanum and Lotus spp. plants.

    PubMed

    Granada, Camille E; Strochein, Marcos; Vargas, Luciano K; Bruxel, Manuela; de Sá, Enilson Luiz Saccol; Passaglia, Luciane M P

    2014-06-01

    This work aimed to evaluate the symbiotic compatibility and nodulation efficiency of rhizobia isolated from Desmodium incanum, Lotus corniculatus, L. subbiflorus, L. uliginosus and L. glaber plants by cross-inoculation. Twelve reference strains and 21 native isolates of rhizobia were genetically analyzed by the BOX-PCR technique, which showed a high genetic diversity among the rhizobia studied. The isolates were also characterized based on their production of indolic compounds and siderophores, as well as on their tolerance to salinity. Fifteen of the 33 rhizobia analyzed were able to produce indolic compounds, whereas 13 produced siderophores. All the tested rhizobia were sensitive to high salinity, although some were able to grow in solutions of up to 2% NaCl. Most of the native rhizobia isolated from L. uliginosus were able to induce nodulation in all plant species studied. In a greenhouse experiment using both D. incanum and L. corniculatus plants, the rhizobia isolate UFRGS Lu2 promoted the greatest plant growth. The results demonstrate that there are native rhizobia in the soils of southern Brazil that have low host specificity and are able to induce nodulation and form active nodules in several plant species. PMID:25071405

  4. Diversity patterns of selected Andean plant groups correspond to topography and habitat dynamics, not orogeny

    PubMed Central

    Mutke, Jens; Jacobs, Rana; Meyers, Katharina; Henning, Tilo; Weigend, Maximilian

    2014-01-01

    The tropical Andes are a hotspot of biodiversity, but detailed altitudinal and latitudinal distribution patterns of species are poorly understood. We compare the distribution and diversity patterns of four Andean plant groups on the basis of georeferenced specimen data: the genus Nasa (Loasaceae), the two South American sections of Ribes (sect. Parilla and sect. Andina, Grossulariaceae), and the American clade of Urtica (Urticaceae). In the tropical Andes, these often grow together, especially in (naturally or anthropogenically) disturbed or secondary vegetation at middle to upper elevations. The climatic niches of the tropical groups studied here are relatively similar in temperature and temperature seasonality, but do differ in moisture seasonality. The Amotape–Huancabamba Zone (AHZ) between 3 and 8° S shows a clear diversity peak of overall species richness as well as for narrowly endemic species across the groups studied. For Nasa, we also show a particular diversity of growth forms in the AHZ. This can be interpreted as proxy for a high diversity of ecological niches based on high spatial habitat heterogeneity in this zone. Latitudinal ranges are generally larger toward the margins of overall range of the group. Species number and number of endemic species of our taxa peak at elevations of 2,500–3,500 m in the tropical Andes. Altitudinal diversity patterns correspond well with the altitudinal distribution of slope inclination. We hypothesize that the likelihood and frequency of landslides at steeper slopes translate into temporal habitat heterogeneity. The frequency of landslides may be causally connected to diversification especially for the numerous early colonizing taxa, such as Urtica and annual species of Nasa. In contrast to earlier hypotheses, uplift history is not reflected in the pattern here retrieved, since the AHZ is the area of the most recent Andean uplift. Similarly, a barrier effect of the low-lying Huancabamba depression is not retrieved in our data. PMID:25346750

  5. 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...

  6. Time course of plant diversity effects on Centaurea jacea establishment and the role of competition and herbivory

    Microsoft Academic Search

    N. Nitschke; A. Ebeling; T. Rottstock; C. Scherber; C. Middelhoff; S. Creutzburg; A. Weigelt; T. Tscharntke; M. Fischer; W. W. Weisser

    2010-01-01

    Aims Invasion resistance in experimental plant communities is known to increase with increasing diversity and further to depend on the presence of particular functional groups. To test whether these effects also hold true for the invader establishment phase beyond the seedling stage, we studied survival and performance of Centaurea jacea L. (brown knapweecl) planted into experimental grassland communities of varying

  7. Plant diversity effects on soil food webs are stronger than those of elevated CO2 and N deposition

    E-print Network

    Minnesota, University of

    manipulation of multiple en- vironmental factors that are changing at global scales--specifically plant species and few interactions with other global change drivers, protecting plant diversity may be of high priority). In addition to representing one dramatic consequence of an- thropogenic global change, biodiversity loss (here

  8. Catalogue of alien plants of the Czech Republic (2nd edition): checklist update, taxonomic diversity and invasion patterns

    E-print Network

    Kratochvíl, Lukas

    Catalogue of alien plants of the Czech Republic (2nd edition): checklist update, taxonomic): Catalogue of alien plants of the Czech Republic (2nd edition): checklist update, taxonomic diversity and invasion patterns. ­ Preslia 84: 155­255. A complete list of all alien taxa ever recorded in the flora

  9. Protocol: a rapid and economical procedure for purification of plasmid or plant DNA with diverse applications in plant biology

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Research in plant molecular biology involves DNA purification on a daily basis. Although different commercial kits enable convenient extraction of high-quality DNA from E. coli cells, PCR and agarose gel samples as well as plant tissues, each kit is designed for a particular type of DNA extraction work, and the cost of purchasing these kits over a long run can be considerable. Furthermore, a simple method for the isolation of binary plasmid from Agrobacterium tumefaciens cells with satisfactory yield is lacking. Here we describe an easy protocol using homemade silicon dioxide matrix and seven simple solutions for DNA extraction from E. coli and A. tumefaciens cells, PCR and restriction digests, agarose gel slices, and plant tissues. Compared with the commercial kits, this protocol allows rapid DNA purification from diverse sources with comparable yield and purity at negligible cost. Following this protocol, we have demonstrated: (1) DNA fragments as small as a MYC-epitope tag coding sequence can be successfully recovered from an agarose gel slice; (2) Miniprep DNA from E. coli can be eluted with as little as 5 ?l water, leading to high DNA concentrations (>1 ?g/?l) for efficient biolistic bombardment of Arabidopsis seedlings, polyethylene glycol (PEG)-mediated Arabidopsis protoplast transfection and maize protoplast electroporation; (3) Binary plasmid DNA prepared from A. tumefaciens is suitable for verification by restriction analysis without the need for large scale propagation; (4) High-quality genomic DNA is readily isolated from several plant species including Arabidopsis, tobacco and maize. Thus, the silicon dioxide matrix-based DNA purification protocol offers an easy, efficient and economical way to extract DNA for various purposes in plant research. PMID:20180960

  10. S-allele diversity in a natural population of Physalis crassifolia (Solanaceae) (ground cherry) assessed by RT-PCR

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Adam D Richman; Marcy K Uyenoyama; Joshua R Kohn

    1996-01-01

    Allelic diversity at the self-incompatibility (S-) locus in the ground cherry, Physalis crassifolia (Solanaceae), was surveyed in a natural population occurring in Deep Canyon, CA, using a molecular assay to determine the genotype of individual plants. A total of 28 different S-alleles were identified and sequenced from a sample of 22 plants. All plants examined were heterozygous, as expected under

  11. Ecological and socioeconomic correlates of plant invasions in Denmark: the utility of environmental assessment data.

    PubMed

    Thiele, Jan; Kollmann, Johannes; Andersen, Ulla Rose

    2009-03-01

    Control of plant invasions requires regional knowledge of invasive species' distribution and the factors that promote their spread. We studied the distribution of invasive alien plants in Denmark at 2 spatial scales ("site" and "municipality") based on habitat descriptions and species lists from 2343 sites recorded within environmental assessments for planned infrastructure projects and conservation management. We created a Geographic Information System database of the sites and supplemented the field data with information on traffic routes, water courses, and socioeconomic indicators from the respective municipalities. The percentage of invaded sites within a municipality decreased with increasing tax percentage and it increased with (sub-)urbanity. The number of invasive species at the sites was positively correlated with resident plant diversity, disturbance, and proximity to traffic routes. We conclude that current plant invasions in Denmark are mainly an anthropogenic (sub-)urban phenomenon. The results are discussed with respect to the utility of environmental assessment data for studying plant invasions and improving control of invasive species. PMID:19431938

  12. Functional diversity of 2-oxoglutarate/Fe(II)-dependent dioxygenases in plant metabolism

    PubMed Central

    Farrow, Scott C.; Facchini, Peter J.

    2014-01-01

    Oxidative enzymes catalyze many different reactions in plant metabolism. Among this suite of enzymes are the 2-oxoglutarate/Fe(II)-dependent dioxygenases (2-ODDs). Cytochromes P450 (CYPs) as often considered the most versatile oxidative enzymes in nature, but the diversity and complexity of reactions catalyzed by 2-ODDs is superior to the CYPs. The list of oxidative reactions catalyzed by 2-ODDs includes hydroxylations, demethylations, desaturations, ring closure, ring cleavage, epimerization, rearrangement, halogenation, and demethylenation. Furthermore, recent work, including the discovery of 2-ODDs involved in epigenetic regulation, and others catalyzing several characteristic steps in specialized metabolic pathways, support the argument that 2-ODDs are among the most versatile and important oxidizing biological catalysts. In this review, we survey and summarize the pertinent literature with a focus on several key reactions catalyzed by 2-ODDs, and discuss the significance and impact of these enzymes in plant metabolism. PMID:25346740

  13. Impacts of recent cultivation on genetic diversity pattern of a medicinal plant, Scutellaria baicalensis (Lamiaceae)

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Cultivation of medicinal plants is not only a means for meeting current and future demands for large volume production of plant-based drug and herbal remedies, but also a means of relieving harvest pressure on wild populations. Scutellaria baicalensis Georgi (Huang-qin or Chinese skullcap) is a very important medicinal plant in China. Over the past several decades, wild resource of this species has suffered rapid declines and large-scale cultivation was initiated to meet the increasing demand for its root. However, the genetic impacts of recent cultivation on S. baicalensis have never been evaluated. In this study, the genetic diversity and genetic structure of 28 wild and 22 cultivated populations were estimated using three polymorphic chloroplast fragments. The objectives of this study are to provide baseline data for preserving genetic resource of S. baicalensis and to evaluate the genetic impacts of recent cultivation on medicinal plants, which may be instructive to future cultivation projects of traditional Chinese medicinal plants. Results Thirty-two haplotypes of S. baicalensis (HapA-Y and Hap1-7) were identified when three chloroplast spacers were combined. These haplotypes constituted a shallow gene tree without obvious clusters for cultivated populations, suggesting multiple origins of cultivated S. baicalensis. Cultivated populations (hT = 0.832) maintained comparable genetic variation with wild populations (hT = 0.888), indicating a slight genetic bottleneck due to multiple origins of cultivation. However, a substantial amount of rare alleles (10 out of 25 haplotypes within wild populations) lost during the course of S. baicalensis cultivation. The genetic differentiation for cultivated group (GST = 0.220) was significantly lower than that of wild group (GST = 0.701). Isolation by distance analysis showed that the effect of geographical isolation on genetic structure was significant in wild populations (r = 0.4346, P < 0.0010), but not in cultivated populations (r = 0.0599, P = 0.2710). These genetic distribution patterns suggest that a transient cultivation history and the extensive seed change among different geographical areas during the course of S. baicalensis cultivation. Conclusions Although cultivated S. baicalensis maintains comparable genetic diversity relative to wild populations, recent cultivation has still imposed profound impacts on genetic diversity patterns of the cultivated S. baicalensis populations, i.e., the loss of rare alleles and homogenization of cultivated populations. This study suggests that conservation-by-cultivation is an effective means for protecting genetic resources of S. baicalensis, however, the wild resources still need to be protected in situ and the evolutionary consequences of extensive seed exchange mediated by human being should be monitored carefully. PMID:20429879

  14. Diversity of Beetle Genes Encoding Novel Plant Cell Wall Degrading Enzymes

    PubMed Central

    Pauchet, Yannick; Wilkinson, Paul; Chauhan, Ritika; ffrench-Constant, Richard H.

    2010-01-01

    Plant cell walls are a heterogeneous mixture of polysaccharides and proteins that require a range of different enzymes to degrade them. Plant cell walls are also the primary source of cellulose, the most abundant and useful biopolymer on the planet. Plant cell wall degrading enzymes (PCWDEs) are therefore important in a wide range of biotechnological processes from the production of biofuels and food to waste processing. However, despite the fact that the last common ancestor of all deuterostomes was inferred to be able to digest, or even synthesize, cellulose using endogenous genes, all model insects whose complete genomes have been sequenced lack genes encoding such enzymes. To establish if the apparent “disappearance” of PCWDEs from insects is simply a sampling problem, we used 454 mediated pyrosequencing to scan the gut transcriptomes of beetles that feed on a variety of plant derived diets. By sequencing the transcriptome of five beetles, and surveying publicly available ESTs, we describe 167 new beetle PCWDEs belonging to eight different enzyme families. This survey proves that these enzymes are not only present in non-model insects but that the multigene families that encode them are apparently undergoing complex birth-death dynamics. This reinforces the observation that insects themselves, and not just their microbial symbionts, are a rich source of PCWDEs. Further it emphasises that the apparent absence of genes encoding PCWDEs from model organisms is indeed simply a sampling artefact. Given the huge diversity of beetles alive today, and the diversity of their lifestyles and diets, we predict that beetle guts will emerge as an important new source of enzymes for use in biotechnology. PMID:21179425

  15. Bacterial diversity in rhizosphere soil from Antarctic vascular plants of Admiralty Bay, maritime Antarctica.

    PubMed

    Teixeira, Lia C R S; Peixoto, Raquel S; Cury, Juliano C; Sul, Woo Jun; Pellizari, Vivian H; Tiedje, James; Rosado, Alexandre S

    2010-08-01

    The Antarctic is a pristine environment that contributes to the maintenance of the global climate equilibrium. The harsh conditions of this habitat are fundamental to selecting those organisms able to survive in such an extreme habitat and able to support the relatively simple ecosystems. The DNA of the microbial community associated with the rhizospheres of Deschampsia antarctica Desv (Poaceae) and Colobanthus quitensis (Kunth) BartI (Caryophyllaceae), the only two native vascular plants that are found in Antarctic ecosystems, was evaluated using a 16S rRNA multiplex 454 pyrosequencing approach. This analysis revealed similar patterns of bacterial diversity between the two plant species from different locations, arguing against the hypothesis that there would be differences between the rhizosphere communities of different plants. Furthermore, the phylum distribution presented a peculiar pattern, with a bacterial community structure different from those reported of many other soils. Firmicutes was the most abundant phylum in almost all the analyzed samples, and there were high levels of anaerobic representatives. Also, some phyla that are dominant in most temperate and tropical soils, such as Acidobacteria, were rarely found in the analyzed samples. Analyzing all the sample libraries together, the predominant genera found were Bifidobacterium (phylum Actinobacteria), Arcobacter (phylum Proteobacteria) and Faecalibacterium (phylum Firmicutes). To the best of our knowledge, this is the first major bacterial sequencing effort of this kind of soil, and it revealed more than expected diversity within these rhizospheres of both maritime Antarctica vascular plants in Admiralty Bay, King George Island, which is part of the South Shetlands archipelago. PMID:20357834

  16. Diversity of endophytic bacterial populations and their interaction with Xylella fastidiosa in citrus plants.

    PubMed

    Araújo, Welington L; Marcon, Joelma; Maccheroni, Walter; Van Elsas, Jan Dirk; Van Vuurde, Jim W L; Azevedo, João Lúcio

    2002-10-01

    Citrus variegated chlorosis (CVC) is caused by Xylella fastidiosa, a phytopathogenic bacterium that can infect all Citrus sinensis cultivars. The endophytic bacterial communities of healthy, resistant, and CVC-affected citrus plants were studied by using cultivation as well as cultivation-independent techniques. The endophytic communities were assessed in surface-disinfected citrus branches by plating and denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE). Dominant isolates were characterized by fatty-acid methyl ester analysis as Bacillus pumilus, Curtobacterium flaccumfaciens, Enterobacter cloacae, Methylobacterium spp. (including Methylobacterium extorquens, M. fujisawaense, M. mesophilicum, M. radiotolerans, and M. zatmanii), Nocardia sp., Pantoea agglomerans, and Xanthomonas campestris. We observed a relationship between CVC symptoms and the frequency of isolation of species of Methylobacterium, the genus that we most frequently isolated from symptomatic plants. In contrast, we isolated C. flaccumfaciens significantly more frequently from asymptomatic plants than from those with symptoms of CVC while P. agglomerans was frequently isolated from tangerine (Citrus reticulata) and sweet-orange (C. sinensis) plants, irrespective of whether the plants were symptomatic or asymptomatic or showed symptoms of CVC. DGGE analysis of 16S rRNA gene fragments amplified from total plant DNA resulted in several bands that matched those from the bacterial isolates, indicating that DGGE profiles can be used to detect some endophytic bacteria of citrus plants. However, some bands had no match with any isolate, suggesting the occurrence of other, nonculturable or as yet uncultured, endophytic bacteria. A specific band with a high G+C ratio was observed only in asymptomatic plants. The higher frequency of C. flaccumfaciens in asymptomatic plants suggests a role for this organism in the resistance of plants to CVC. PMID:12324338

  17. Draft environmental assessment: Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion (OTEC) Pilot Plants

    SciTech Connect

    Sullivan, S.M.; Sands, M.D.; Donat, J.R.; Jepsen, P.; Smookler, M.; Villa, J.F.

    1981-02-01

    This Environmental Assessment (EA) has been prepared, in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, for the deployment and operation of a commercial 40-Megawatt (MW) Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion (OTEC) Pilot Plant (hereafter called the Pilot Plant). A description of the proposed action is presented, and a generic environment typical of the candidate Pilot Plant siting regions is described. An assessment of the potential environmental impacts associated with the proposed action is given, and the risk of credible accidents and mitigating measures to reduce these risks are considered. The Federal and State plans and policies the proposed action will encompass are described. Alternatives to the proposed action are presented. Appendix A presents the navigation and environmental information contained in the US Coast Pilot for each of the candidate sites; Appendix B provides a brief description of the methods and calculations used in the EA. It is concluded that environmental disturbances associated with Pilot Plant activities could potentially cause significant environmental impacts; however, the magnitude of these potential impacts cannot presently be assessed, due to insufficient engineering and environmental information. A site- and design-specific OTEC Pilot Plant Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) is required to resolve the potentially significant environmental effects associated with Pilot Plant deployment and operation. (WHK)

  18. The roles of community biomass and species pools in the regulation of plant diversity

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Grace, J.B.

    2001-01-01

    Considerable debate has developed over the importance of community biomass and species pools in the regulation of community diversity. Attempts to explain patterns of plant diversity as a function of community biomass or productivity have been only partially successful and in general, have explained only a fraction of the observed variation in diversity. At the same time studies that have focused on the importance of species pools have led some to conclude that diversity is primarily regulated in the short term by the size of the species pool rather than by biotic interactions. In this paper, I explore how community biomass and species pools may work in combination to regulate diversity in herbaceous plant communities. To address this problem, I employ a simple model in which the dynamics of species richness are a function of aboveground community biomass and environmentally controlled gradients in species pools. Model results lead to two main predictions about the role of biomass regulation: (1) Seasonal dynamics of richness will tend to follow a regular oscillation, with richness rising to peak values during the early to middle portion of the growing season and then declining during the latter part of the season. (2.) Seasonal dieback of aboveground tissues facilitates the long-term maintenance of high levels of richness in the community. The persistence of aboveground tissues and accumulation of litter are especially important in limiting the number of species through the suppression of recruitment. Model results also lead to two main predictions about the role of species pools: (1) The height and position of peak richness relative to community biomass will be influenced by the rate at which the species pool increases as available soil resources increase. (2) Variations in nonresource environmental factors (e.g. soil pH or soil salinity) have the potential to regulate species pools in a way that is uncorrelated with aboveground biomass. Under extreme conditions, such nonresource effects can create a unimodal envelope of biomass-richness values. Available evidence from the literature provides partial support for these predictions, though additional data are needed to provide more convincing tests.

  19. Slippery or sticky? Functional diversity in the trapping strategy of Nepenthes carnivorous plants.

    PubMed

    Bonhomme, Vincent; Pelloux-Prayer, Hervé; Jousselin, Emmanuelle; Forterre, Yoël; Labat, Jean-Jacques; Gaume, Laurence

    2011-07-01

    The pitcher-shaped leaves of Nepenthes carnivorous plants have been considered as pitfall traps that essentially rely on slippery surfaces to capture insects. But a recent study of Nepenthes rafflesiana has shown that the viscoelasticity of the digestive fluid inside the pitchers plays a key role. Here, we investigated whether Nepenthes species exhibit diverse trapping strategies. We measured the amount of slippery wax on the pitcher walls of 23 taxa and the viscoelasticity of their digestive liquid and compared their retention efficiency on ants and flies. The amount of wax was shown to vary greatly between species. Most mountain species exhibited viscoelastic digestive fluids while water-like fluids were predominant in lowland species. Both characteristics contributed to insect trapping but wax was more efficient at trapping ants while viscoelasticity was key in trapping insects and was even more efficient than wax on flies. Trap waxiness and fluid viscoelasticity were inversely related, suggesting the possibility of an investment trade-off for the plants. Therefore Nepenthes pitcher plants do not solely employ slippery devices to trap insects but often employ a viscoelastic strategy. The entomofauna specific to the plant's habitat may exert selective pressures, favouring one trapping strategy at the expense of the other. PMID:21434933

  20. Repeated, recent and diverse transfers of a mitochondrial gene to the nucleus in flowering plants.

    PubMed

    Adams, K L; Daley, D O; Qiu, Y L; Whelan, J; Palmer, J D

    2000-11-16

    A central component of the endosymbiotic theory for the bacterial origin of the mitochondrion is that many of its genes were transferred to the nucleus. Most of this transfer occurred early in mitochondrial evolution; functional transfer of mitochondrial genes has ceased in animals. Although mitochondrial gene transfer continues to occur in plants, no comprehensive study of the frequency and timing of transfers during plant evolution has been conducted. Here we report frequent loss (26 times) and transfer to the nucleus of the mitochondrial gene rps10 among 277 diverse angiosperms. Characterization of nuclear rps10 genes from 16 out of 26 loss lineages implies that many independent, RNA-mediated rps10 transfers occurred during recent angiosperm evolution; each of the genes may represent a separate functional gene transfer. Thus, rps10 has been transferred to the nucleus at a surprisingly high rate during angiosperm evolution. The structures of several nuclear rps10 genes reveal diverse mechanisms by which transferred genes become activated, including parasitism of pre-existing nuclear genes for mitochondrial or cytoplasmic proteins, and activation without gain of a mitochondrial targeting sequence. PMID:11099041

  1. Genetic diversity in some perennial plant species with-in short distances.

    PubMed

    Pandeya, S C; Chandra, A; Pathak, P S

    2007-01-01

    Distinct morphophysiological variations observed for over 2 years with-in short distances among four perennial plants indicated genetic diversity among the lines growing at three places. The isozyme and SDS polyacrylamide gel banding patterns as genetic markers were used to investigate four perennial species, namely Dalbergia sissoo Roxb., Delonix regia (Boj.) Refin., Cassia fistula L. and Calotropis procera R. Br. Plant materials collected from three locations (Agra, Gwalior and Lucknow) differing in climo-edaphic variables were examined for 4 enzyme systems, viz., esterase, polyphenol oxidase, peroxidase and superoxide dismutase (EST, PPO, PRX and SOD). Among the four isozymes SOD and PRX revealed best discriminating power. Protein banding patterns as well as zymogram revealed that Dalbergia sissoo growing at Gwalior was closer to that of Agra; Delonix regia depicted highest similarity between Lucknow and Agra and Calotropis procera of Lucknow location was more closer to Gwalior than Agra. The results confirm genetic diversity in the species as a means of adaptation to differing climo-edaphic variables. PMID:17717991

  2. Diversity and Taxonomy of Endophytic Xylariaceous Fungi from Medicinal Plants of Dendrobium (Orchidaceae)

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Juan; Zhang, Li-Chun; Xing, Yong-Mei; Wang, Yun-Qiang; Xing, Xiao-Ke; Zhang, Da-Wei; Liang, Han-Qiao; Guo, Shun-Xing

    2013-01-01

    Dendrobium spp. are traditional Chinese medicinal plants, and the main effective ingredients (polysaccharides and alkaloids) have pharmacologic effects on gastritis infection, cancer, and anti-aging. Previously, we confirmed endophytic xylariaceous fungi as the dominant fungi in several Dendrobium species of tropical regions from China. In the present study, the diversity, taxonomy, and distribution of culturable endophytic xylariaceous fungi associated with seven medicinal species of Dendrobium (Orchidaceae) were investigated. Among the 961 endophytes newly isolated, 217 xylariaceous fungi (morphotaxa) were identified using morphological and molecular methods. The phylogenetic tree constructed using nuclear ribosomal internal transcribed spacer (ITS), large subunit of ribosomal DNA (LSU), and beta-tubulin sequences divided these anamorphic xylariaceous isolates into at least 18 operational taxonomic units (OTUs). The diversity of the endophytic xylariaceous fungi in these seven Dendrobium species was estimated using Shannon and evenness indices, with the results indicating that the dominant Xylariaceae taxa in each Dendrobium species were greatly different, though common xylariaceous fungi were found in several Dendrobium species. These findings implied that different host plants in the same habitats exhibit a preference and selectivity for their fungal partners. Using culture-dependent approaches, these xylariaceous isolates may be important sources for the future screening of new natural products and drug discovery. PMID:23472167

  3. Communities of different plant diversity respond similarly to drought stress: experimental evidence from field non-weeded and greenhouse conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lanta, Vojt?ch; Doležal, Ji?í; Zemková, Lenka; Lepš, Jan

    2012-06-01

    Accelerating rate of species loss has prompted researchers to study the role of species diversity in processes that control ecosystem functioning. Although negative impact of species loss has been documented, the evidence concerning its impact on ecosystem stability is still limited. Here, we studied the effects of declining species and functional diversity on plant community responses to drought in the field (open to weed colonization) and greenhouse conditions. Both species and functional diversity positively affected the average yields of field communities. However, this pattern was similar in both drought-stressed and control plots. No effect of diversity on community resistance, biomass recovery after drought and resilience was found because drought reduced biomass production similarly at each level of diversity by approximately 30 %. The use of dissimilarity (characterized by Euclidean distance) revealed higher variation under changing environments (drought-stressed vs. control) in more diverse communities compared to less species-rich assemblages. In the greenhouse experiment, the effect of species diversity affected community resistance, indicating that more diverse communities suffered more from drought than species-poor ones. We conclude that our study did not support the insurance hypothesis (stability properties of a community should increase with species richness) because species diversity had an equivocal effect on ecosystem resistance and resilience in an environment held under non-weeded practice, regardless of the positive relationship between sown species diversity and community biomass production. More species-rich communities were less resistant against drought-stressed conditions than species-poor ones grown in greenhouse conditions.

  4. Lean manufacturing performance in China: assessment of 65 manufacturing plants

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Shahram Taj

    2008-01-01

    Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to investigate the adaptation of lean production and assess its current state of practice in selected plants in electronics, telecommunication, wireless, computer, food\\/beverage, garment, pharmaceutical, chemical, petroleum, printing, A\\/C and heating, and a few others in China. Design\\/methodology\\/approach – An assessment tool is used to evaluate actual manufacturing practice related to key

  5. Assessment of Genetic Diversity, Relationships and Structure among Korean Native Cattle Breeds Using Microsatellite Markers

    PubMed Central

    Suh, Sangwon; Kim, Young-Sin; Cho, Chang-Yeon; Byun, Mi-Jeong; Choi, Seong-Bok; Ko, Yeoung-Gyu; Lee, Chang Woo; Jung, Kyoung-Sub; Bae, Kyoung Hun; Kim, Jae-Hwan

    2014-01-01

    Four Korean native cattle (KNC) breeds—Hanwoo, Chikso, Heugu, and Jeju black—are entered in the Domestic Animal Diversity Information System of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). The objective of this study was to assess the genetic diversity, phylogenetic relationships and population structure of these KNC breeds (n = 120) and exotic breeds (Holstein and Charolais, n = 56). Thirty microsatellite loci recommended by the International Society for Animal Genetics/FAO were genotyped. These genotypes were used to determine the allele frequencies, allelic richness, heterozygosity and polymorphism information content per locus and breed. Genetic diversity was lower in Heugu and Jeju black breeds. Phylogenetic analysis, Factorial Correspondence Analysis and genetic clustering grouped each breed in its own cluster, which supported the genetic uniqueness of the KNC breeds. These results will be useful for conservation and management of KNC breeds as animal genetic resources. PMID:25358313

  6. Diverse chalcone synthase superfamily enzymes from the most primitive vascular plant, Psilotum nudum.

    PubMed

    Yamazaki, Y; Suh, D Y; Sitthithaworn, W; Ishiguro, K; Kobayashi, Y; Shibuya, M; Ebizuka, Y; Sankawa, U

    2001-11-01

    Psilotum nudum Griseb is a pteridophyte and belongs to the single family (Psilotaceae) of the division, Psilophyta. Being the only living species of a once populated division, P. nudum is the most primitive vascular plant. Chalcone synthase (CHS; EC 2.3.1.74) superfamily enzymes are responsible for biosyntheses of diverse secondary metabolites, including flavonoids and stilbenes. Using a reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction strategy, four CHS-superfamily enzymes (PnJ, PnI, PnL and PnP) were cloned from P. nudum, and heterologously expressed in Escherichia coli. These four enzymes of 396-406 amino acids showed sequence identity of > 50% among themselves and to other higher-plant CHS-superfamily enzymes. PnJ and PnP preferred p-coumaroyl-CoA and isovaleryl-CoA respectively, as starter CoA and catalyzed CHS-type ring formation, indicating that they are CHS and phlorisovalerophenone synthase, respectively. On the other hand, PnI and PnL preferred cinnamoyl-CoA as starter CoA and catalyzed stilbene synthase-type cyclization and thus were determined to be pinosylvin synthases (EC 2.3.1.146). In addition, PnE, which uniquely contains a glutamine in place of otherwise strictly conserved histidine, had no apparent in vitro catalytic activity. Phylogenetic analysis indicated that these P. nudum clones form a separate cluster together with Equisetum arvense CHS. This cluster of pteridophytes is located next to the cluster formed by pine (gymnosperm) enzymes, in agreement with their evolutionary relationships. Psilotum nudum represents a plant with the most diverse CHS-superfamily enzymes and this ability to diverge may have provided a survival edge during evolution. PMID:11762173

  7. Genetic and phenotypic diversity of plant growth promoting rhizobacteria isolated from sugarcane plants growing in pakistan.

    PubMed

    Mehnaz, Samina; Baig, Deeba Noreen; Lazarovits, George

    2010-12-01

    Bacteria were isolated from roots of sugarcane varieties grown in the fields of Punjab. They were identified by using API20E/NE bacterial identification kits and from sequences of 16S rRNA and amplicons of the cpn60 gene. The majority of bacteria were found to belong to the genera of Enterobacter, Pseudomonas, and Klebsiella, but members of genera Azospirillum, Rhizobium, Rahnella, Delftia, Caulobacter, Pannonibacter, Xanthomonas, and Stenotrophomonas were also found. The community, however, was dominated by members of the Pseudomonadaceae and Enterobacteriaceae, as representatives of these genera were found in samples from every variety and location examined. All isolates were tested for the presence of five enzymes and seven factors known to be associated with plant growth promotion. Ten isolates showed lipase activity and eight were positive for protease activity. Cellulase, chitinase, and pectinase were not detected in any strain. Nine strains showed nitrogen fixing ability (acetylene reduction assay) and 26 were capable of solubilizing phosphate. In the presence of 100 mg/l tryptophan, all strains except one produced indole acetic acid in the growth medium. All isolates were positive for ACC deaminase activity. Six strains produced homoserine lactones and three produced HCN and hexamate type siderophores. One isolate was capable of inhibiting the growth of 24 pathogenic fungal strains of Colletotrichum, Fusarium, Pythium, and Rhizoctonia spp. In tests of their abilities to grow under a range of temperature, pH, and NaCl concentrations, all isolates grew well on plates with 3% NaCl and most of them grew well at 4 to 41degrees C and at pH 11. PMID:21193815

  8. Genetic Diversity Analysis of Highly Incomplete SNP Genotype Data with Imputations: An Empirical Assessment

    PubMed Central

    Fu, Yong-Bi

    2014-01-01

    Genotyping by sequencing (GBS) recently has emerged as a promising genomic approach for assessing genetic diversity on a genome-wide scale. However, concerns are not lacking about the uniquely large unbalance in GBS genotype data. Although some genotype imputation has been proposed to infer missing observations, little is known about the reliability of a genetic diversity analysis of GBS data, with up to 90% of observations missing. Here we performed an empirical assessment of accuracy in genetic diversity analysis of highly incomplete single nucleotide polymorphism genotypes with imputations. Three large single-nucleotide polymorphism genotype data sets for corn, wheat, and rice were acquired, and missing data with up to 90% of missing observations were randomly generated and then imputed for missing genotypes with three map-independent imputation methods. Estimating heterozygosity and inbreeding coefficient from original, missing, and imputed data revealed variable patterns of bias from assessed levels of missingness and genotype imputation, but the estimation biases were smaller for missing data without genotype imputation. The estimates of genetic differentiation were rather robust up to 90% of missing observations but became substantially biased when missing genotypes were imputed. The estimates of topology accuracy for four representative samples of interested groups generally were reduced with increased levels of missing genotypes. Probabilistic principal component analysis based imputation performed better in terms of topology accuracy than those analyses of missing data without genotype imputation. These findings are not only significant for understanding the reliability of the genetic diversity analysis with respect to large missing data and genotype imputation but also are instructive for performing a proper genetic diversity analysis of highly incomplete GBS or other genotype data. PMID:24626289

  9. Genetic diversity analysis of highly incomplete SNP genotype data with imputations: an empirical assessment.

    PubMed

    Fu, Yong-Bi

    2014-05-01

    Genotyping by sequencing (GBS) recently has emerged as a promising genomic approach for assessing genetic diversity on a genome-wide scale. However, concerns are not lacking about the uniquely large unbalance in GBS genotype data. Although some genotype imputation has been proposed to infer missing observations, little is known about the reliability of a genetic diversity analysis of GBS data, with up to 90% of observations missing. Here we performed an empirical assessment of accuracy in genetic diversity analysis of highly incomplete single nucleotide polymorphism genotypes with imputations. Three large single-nucleotide polymorphism genotype data sets for corn, wheat, and rice were acquired, and missing data with up to 90% of missing observations were randomly generated and then imputed for missing genotypes with three map-independent imputation methods. Estimating heterozygosity and inbreeding coefficient from original, missing, and imputed data revealed variable patterns of bias from assessed levels of missingness and genotype imputation, but the estimation biases were smaller for missing data without genotype imputation. The estimates of genetic differentiation were rather robust up to 90% of missing observations but became substantially biased when missing genotypes were imputed. The estimates of topology accuracy for four representative samples of interested groups generally were reduced with increased levels of missing genotypes. Probabilistic principal component analysis based imputation performed better in terms of topology accuracy than those analyses of missing data without genotype imputation. These findings are not only significant for understanding the reliability of the genetic diversity analysis with respect to large missing data and genotype imputation but also are instructive for performing a proper genetic diversity analysis of highly incomplete GBS or other genotype data. PMID:24626289

  10. Plutonium Finishing Plant assessment of confinement system bypass leakage

    SciTech Connect

    Dick, J.D.

    1996-09-30

    The purpose of this report is to document walk-through`s of the safety class confinement systems at the Plutonium Finishing Plant (PFP). In addition this document outlines the actions taken to assess the confinement system for bypass leakage as well as establishing disposition for discovered deficiencies at the PFP.

  11. Property risk assessment for power plants: Methodology, validation and application

    Microsoft Academic Search

    George J. Orme; Mauro Venturini

    2011-01-01

    In this paper, a procedure for Risk Assessment, which makes use of two risk indices (PML – Probable Maximum Loss and MFL – Maximum Foreseeable Loss) is applied to power plants to evaluate potential economic losses due to risk exposure for two different loss scenarios (probable and worst-case).First, the procedure is presented in order to provide a prediction of probable

  12. Natural phenomena risk assessment at Rocky Flats Plant

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Foppe

    1985-01-01

    A realistic approach is currently being used at the Rocky Flats Plant to assess the risks of natural phenomena events. The methodology addresses frequency of occurrence estimates, damage stress on the facility and vital equipment, material-at-risk, release fractions and source terms, leakpath, dispersion and dosimetric models, risk curves, and an uncertainty analysis. 28 refs.

  13. Imprinting in plants as a mechanism to generate seed phenotypic diversity

    PubMed Central

    Bai, Fang; Settles, A. M.

    2015-01-01

    Normal plant development requires epigenetic regulation to enforce changes in developmental fate. Genomic imprinting is a type of epigenetic regulation in which identical alleles of genes are expressed in a parent-of-origin dependent manner. Deep sequencing of transcriptomes has identified hundreds of imprinted genes with scarce evidence for the developmental importance of individual imprinted loci. Imprinting is regulated through global DNA demethylation in the central cell prior to fertilization and directed repression of individual loci with the Polycomb Repressive Complex 2 (PRC2). There is significant evidence for transposable elements and repeat sequences near genes acting as cis-elements to determine imprinting status of a gene, implying that imprinted gene expression patterns may evolve randomly and at high frequency. Detailed genetic analysis of a few imprinted loci suggests an imprinted pattern of gene expression is often dispensable for seed development. Few genes show conserved imprinted expression within or between plant species. These data are not fully explained by current models for the evolution of imprinting in plant seeds. We suggest that imprinting may have evolved to provide a mechanism for rapid neofunctionalization of genes during seed development to increase phenotypic diversity of seeds. PMID:25674092

  14. Positive interactions between large herbivores and grasshoppers, and their consequences for grassland plant diversity.

    PubMed

    Zhong, Zhiwei; Wang, Deli; Zhu, Hui; Wang, Ling; Feng, Chao; Wang, Zhongnan

    2014-04-01

    Although the influence of positive interactions on plant and sessile communities has been well documented, surprisingly little is known about their role in structuring terrestrial animal communities. We evaluated beneficial interactions between two distantly related herbivore taxa, large vertebrate grazers (sheep) and smaller insect grazers (grasshoppers), using a set of field experiments in eastern Eurasian steppe of China. Grazing by large herbivores caused significantly higher grasshopper density, and this pattern persisted until the end of the experiment. Grasshoppers, in turn, increased the foraging time of larger herbivores, but such response occurred only during the peak of growing season (August). These reciprocal interactions were driven by differential herbivore foraging preferences for plant resources; namely, large herbivores preferred Artemisia forbs, whereas grasshoppers preferred Leymus grass. The enhancement of grasshopper density in areas grazed by large herbivores likely resulted from the selective consumption of Artemisia forbs by vertebrate grazers, which may potentially improve the host finding of grasshoppers. Likewise, grasshoppers appeared to benefit large herbivores by decreasing the cover and density of the dominant grass Leymus chinensis, which hampers large herbivores' access to palatable forbs. Moreover, we found that large herbivores grazing alone may significantly decrease plant diversity, yet grasshoppers appeared to mediate such negative effects when they grazed with large herbivores. Our results suggest that the positive, reciprocal interactions in terrestrial herbivore communities may be more prevalent and complex than previously thought. PMID:24933823

  15. [Genetic diversity of natural and planted Glyptostrobus pensilis populations: a comparative study].

    PubMed

    Wu, Ze-yan; Liu, Jin-fu; Hong, Wei; Pan, Dong-ming; Zheng, Shi-qun

    2011-04-01

    Glyptostrobus pensilis is a rare and endangered relict species in China. To make a comparative study on the genetic diversity and genetic structure of natural and planted G. pensilis populations would have significance in the conservation and proliferation of the species. Samples from the main distribution regions of G. pensilis were analyzed by ISSR (inter simple sequence repeats) molecular marker. A total of 95 discernible DNA fragments were detected with 10 ISSR primers, of which, polymorphic loci occupied 39.0%, suggesting that the genetic variation in the test G. pensilis populations was at a very low level, compared with other endangered gymnosperm. The genetic differential index (G(st) = 0.3982) and the gene flow (N(m) = 0.3778) indicated that there existed genetic differentiation among populations but the differentiation dominated within populations. There was a significant positive correlation between genetic distance and geographical distance. The mean values of polymorphic loci (P), Nei's gene index (H(e)), and Shannon information index (I) of natural populations (P = 39.9%, H(e) = 0.1499, I = 0.2202) were much higher than those of planted G. pensilis populations (P = 30.7%, H(e) = 0.1265, I = 0.1759), and the coefficient of gene differentiation (G(st)) and genetic distance (D) of natural populations (G(st) = 0.4513, D = 0.0301) were also much higher than those of the planted populations (G(st) = 0.3025, D = 0.0192). PMID:21774306

  16. An assessment of macroinvertebrate assemblages in mosquito larval habitats—space and diversity relationship

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Soumyajit Banerjee; Gautam Aditya; Nabaneeta Saha; Goutam K. Saha

    2010-01-01

    The aquatic bodies designated as mosquito larval habitats are diverse in size and species composition. The macroinvertebrate\\u000a predators in these habitats are elements that influence the abundance of mosquito species, providing a basis for biological\\u000a control. Assessment of species assemblage in these habitats will indicate the possible variations in the resource exploitation\\u000a and trophic interactions and, therefore, can help to

  17. Alternative Assessment of Language and Literacy in Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Populations

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Sandra P. Laing; Alan Kamhi

    2003-01-01

    Over- and underdiagnosis of language and literacy problems are common with low-socioeconomic status ethnically and racially diverse children. In recent years, a number of alternative assessment procedures have been developed that reduce some of the biases inherent in norm-referenced standardized tests. Problems and recent solutions to the use of norm-referenced testing will be discussed, with a focus on processing- dependent

  18. An Assessment of Urea-Formaldehyde Fertilizer on the Diversity of Bacterial Communities in Onion and Sugar Beet

    PubMed Central

    Ikeda, Seishi; Suzuki, Keijiro; Kawahara, Makoto; Noshiro, Masao; Takahashi, Naokazu

    2014-01-01

    The impact of a urea-formaldehyde (UF) fertilizer on bacterial diversity in onion bulbs and main roots of sugar beet were examined using a 16S rRNA gene clone library. The UF fertilizer markedly increased bacterial diversity in both plants. The results of principal coordinates analysis (PCoA) revealed that nearly 30% of the variance observed in bacterial diversity in both the onion and sugar beet was attributed to the fertilization conditions and also that the community structures in both plants shifted unidirectionally in response to the UF fertilizer. PMID:24882062

  19. Rhizosphere bacterial communities associated with long-lived perennial prairie plants vary in diversity, composition, and structure.

    PubMed

    Rosenzweig, N; Bradeen, J M; Tu, Z J; McKay, S J; Kinkel, L L

    2013-07-01

    The goal of this research was to investigate the variation in rhizosphere microbial community composition, diversity, and structure among individual Andropogon gerardii Vitman (big bluestem) and Lespedeza capitata Michx. (bush clover). Bacterial communities from the rhizosphere of 10 plants of each species (n = 20 plants total) were explored using a culture-independent pipeline. Microbial communities associated with both host plants had high bacterial diversity within individual plant rhizosphere and taxa unique to individual rhizospheres. Bacterial communities associated with the rhizosphere of A. gerardii were consistently more diverse than those associated with L. capitata, and there were significant differences between plant species in rhizosphere bacterial community composition. Differences included microbial taxa with no known functional relationship with their preferred host species, including sulfide-methylating obligate anaerobes (Holophaga), complete denitrifiers (Rhodoplanes), sludge inhabitants (Ktedonobacter), and nitrate oxidizers (Nitrospira). These results suggest the potential for plant species to have significant impacts on a broad array of ecosystem functions (e.g., cycling of carbon, nitrogen sulfurs, metals, and trace elements) via their selective impacts on soil microbes. However, sequence-based community analysis and the corresponding lack of intact microbial cultures limits understanding of the potential influences of enriched microbial taxa on plant hosts and their roles in ecosystem functioning. PMID:23826959

  20. Cross-Scale Analysis of the Region Effect on Vascular Plant Species Diversity in Southern and Northern European Mountain Ranges

    PubMed Central

    Lenoir, Jonathan; Gégout, Jean-Claude; Guisan, Antoine; Vittoz, Pascal; Wohlgemuth, Thomas; Zimmermann, Niklaus E.; Dullinger, Stefan; Pauli, Harald; Willner, Wolfgang; Grytnes, John-Arvid; Virtanen, Risto; Svenning, Jens-Christian

    2010-01-01

    Background The divergent glacial histories of southern and northern Europe affect present-day species diversity at coarse-grained scales in these two regions, but do these effects also penetrate to the more fine-grained scales of local communities? Methodology/Principal Findings We carried out a cross-scale analysis to address this question for vascular plants in two mountain regions, the Alps in southern Europe and the Scandes in northern Europe, using environmentally paired vegetation plots in the two regions (n?=?403 in each region) to quantify four diversity components: (i) total number of species occurring in a region (total ?-diversity), (ii) number of species that could occur in a target plot after environmental filtering (habitat-specific ?-diversity), (iii) pair-wise species compositional turnover between plots (plot-to-plot ?-diversity) and (iv) number of species present per plot (plot ?-diversity). We found strong region effects on total ?-diversity, habitat-specific ?-diversity and plot-to-plot ?-diversity, with a greater diversity in the Alps even towards distances smaller than 50 m between plots. In contrast, there was a slightly greater plot ?-diversity in the Scandes, but with a tendency towards contrasting region effects on high and low soil-acidity plots. Conclusions/Significance We conclude that there are strong regional differences between coarse-grained (landscape- to regional-scale) diversity components of the flora in the Alps and the Scandes mountain ranges, but that these differences do not necessarily penetrate to the finest-grained (plot-scale) diversity component, at least not on acidic soils. Our findings are consistent with the contrasting regional Quaternary histories, but we also consider alternative explanatory models. Notably, ecological sorting and habitat connectivity may play a role in the unexpected limited or reversed region effect on plot ?-diversity, and may also affect the larger-scale diversity components. For instance, plot connectivity and/or selection for high dispersal ability may increase plot ?-diversity and compensate for low total ?-diversity. PMID:21203521

  1. Neogene and Quaternary history of vegetation, climate, and plant diversity in Amazonia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van der Hammen, Thomas; Hooghiemstra, Henry

    2000-04-01

    The neotropical Amazonian and Andean plant diversity developed mainly during the Tertiary. In Amazonia, Miocene floral diversity seems considerably higher than today. During the Neogene, tropical taxa entered newly created montane area, and montane taxa entered the tropical lowlands. The general decrease of temperature during the upper Neogene and especially during the Quaternary glacial periods may have caused considerable extinctions in the lowlands. Representation of pollen of apparently principally montane taxa ( Podocarpus, Hedyosmum) in Miocene, Pliocene, and Quaternary sediments of Amazonia and surroundings, is still difficult to interpret in terms of temperature decrease at low elevation. Changes in precipitation may have profound impact on the composition of vegetation communities; Ilex and Melastomataceae increase significantly in many glacial pollen records. Increase of Weinmannia in Amazonian pollen records seems the best indicator of downward migration of montane vegetation belts. A temperature lowering at sea-level of 4.5 ±1°C during the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) seems reasonable; it may have caused a downslope migration of some 700 m of the lower montane vegetation belt; lower montane arboreal species may have been able to grow in higher elevation areas (>500 m) of Amazonia, increasing background pollen values of montane taxa in the area. Difference between a cool and wet Middle Pleniglacial (60-28 ka BP), and a cold and dry Upper Pleniglacial (28-14 ka BP; thus including the LGM) is evident in Andean and Amazonian records; statements about environmental conditions of the ice-age Amazon should be specified chronologically. The Middle Pleniglacial is a time of accumulation of fluvial sediments. The Upper Pleniglacial is a time of incision of the rivers in their sediments; sedimentation started again in the Lateglacial (since ca. 13 ka BP) and the Holocene, when lake levels rose again. Based on simplified considerations of precipitation changes and evaporation we estimate that LGM rainfall may have been reduced by values of ca. 45(±10%); Amazonian and Cordilleran lakes dried up; dry rain forest was locally replaced by savanna, savanna forest, or cerrado-type vegetation; dry rain forest, savanna forest, and pure savanna was locally replaced by extensive semi-desert dune formations (lower Rio Branco area in present-day central Amazonia). The present-day centers of higher rainfall (>2500 mm) surrounded by areas of lower rainfall, are refuge areas of the very wet rain forest and of the very high plant diversity (300 plant species per 0.1 ha), and they should have been that equally, or more, during the dry climate intervals (plant diversity of drier forests is in the order of 100-150 species per 0.1 ha). Both extinction and speciation in isolation under precipitation and temperature stress may have taken place in these refugia.

  2. Membrane bioreactor wastewater treatment plants reveal diverse yeast and protist communities of potential significance in biofouling.

    PubMed

    Liébana, Raquel; Arregui, Lucía; Belda, Ignacio; Gamella, Luis; Santos, Antonio; Marquina, Domingo; Serrano, Susana

    2015-01-01

    The yeast community was studied in a municipal full-scale membrane bioreactor wastewater treatment plant (MBR-WWTP). The unexpectedly high diversity of yeasts indicated that the activated sludge formed a suitable environment for them to proliferate, with cellular concentrations of 2.2 ± 0.8?×?10(3) CFU ml(-1). Sixteen species of seven genera were present in the biological reactor, with Ascomycetes being the most prevalent group (93%). Most isolates were able to grow in a synthetic wastewater medium, adhere to polyethylene surfaces, and develop biofilms of variable complexity. The relationship between yeast populations and the protists in the MBR-WWTP was also studied, revealing that some protist species preyed on and ingested yeasts. These results suggest that yeast populations may play a role in the food web of a WWTP and, to some extent, contribute to membrane biofouling in MBR systems. PMID:25588128

  3. Phylogenetic, microbiological, and glycoside hydrolase diversities within the extremely thermophilic, plant biomass-degrading genus Caldicellulosiruptor.

    PubMed

    Blumer-Schuette, Sara E; Lewis, Derrick L; Kelly, Robert M

    2010-12-01

    Phylogenetic, microbiological, and comparative genomic analyses were used to examine the diversity among members of the genus Caldicellulosiruptor, with an eye toward the capacity of these extremely thermophilic bacteria to degrade the complex carbohydrate content of plant biomass. Seven species from this genus (C. saccharolyticus, C. bescii, C. hydrothermalis, C. owensensis, C. kronotskyensis, C. lactoaceticus, and C. kristjanssonii) were compared on the basis of 16S rRNA gene phylogeny and cross-species DNA-DNA hybridization to a whole-genome C. saccharolyticus oligonucleotide microarray, revealing that C. saccharolyticus was the most divergent within this group. Growth physiology of the seven Caldicellulosiruptor species on a range of carbohydrates showed that, while all could be cultivated on acid-pretreated switchgrass, only C. saccharolyticus, C. bescii, C. kronotskyensis, and C. lactoaceticus were capable of hydrolyzing Whatman no. 1 filter paper. Two-dimensional gel electrophoresis of the secretomes from cells grown on microcrystalline cellulose revealed that the cellulolytic species also had diverse secretome fingerprints. The C. saccharolyticus secretome contained a prominent S-layer protein that appears in the cellulolytic Caldicellulosiruptor species, suggesting a possible role in cell-substrate interactions. Growth physiology also correlated with glycoside hydrolase (GH) and carbohydrate-binding module (CBM) inventories for the seven bacteria, as deduced from draft genome sequence information. These inventories indicated that the absence of a single GH and CBM family was responsible for diminished cellulolytic capacity. Overall, the genus Caldicellulosiruptor appears to contain more genomic and physiological diversity than previously reported, and this argues for continued efforts to isolate new members from high-temperature terrestrial biotopes. PMID:20971878

  4. Molecular evidence for novel planctomycete diversity in a municipal wastewater treatment plant.

    PubMed

    Chouari, Rakia; Le Paslier, Denis; Daegelen, Patrick; Ginestet, Philippe; Weissenbach, Jean; Sghir, Abdelghani

    2003-12-01

    We examined anoxic and aerobic basins and an anaerobic digestor of a municipal wastewater treatment plant for the presence of novel planctomycete-like diversity. Three 16S rRNA gene libraries were constructed by using a 16S rRNA-targeted universal reverse primer and a forward PCR primer specific for Planctomyces: Phylogenetic analysis of 234 16S rRNA gene sequences defined 110 operational taxonomic units. The majority of these sequences clustered with the four known genera, Pirellula (32%), Planctomyces (18.4%), Gemmata (3.8%), and Isosphaera (0.4%). More interestingly, 42.3% of the sequences appeared to define two distantly separated monophyletic groups. The first group, represented by 35.5% of the sequences, was related to the Planctomyces group and branched as a monophyletic cluster. It exhibited between 11.9 and 20.3% 16S rRNA gene sequence dissimilarity in comparisons with cultivated planctomycetes. The second group, represented by 6.8% of the sequences, was deeply rooted within the Planctomycetales tree. It was distantly related to the anammox sequences (level of dissimilarity, 20.3 to 24.4%) and was a monophyletic cluster. The retrieved sequences extended the intralineage phylogenetic depth of the Plantomycetales from 23 to 30.6%. The lineages described here may have a broad diversity of undiscovered biochemical and metabolic novelty. We developed a new 16S rRNA-targeted oligonucleotide probe and localized members of one of the phylogenetic groups using the fluorescent in situ hybridization technique. Our results indicate that activated sludge contains very diverse representatives of this group, which grow under aerobic and anoxic conditions and even under anaerobic conditions. The majority of species in this group remain poorly characterized. PMID:14660385

  5. Phylogenetic, Microbiological, and Glycoside Hydrolase Diversities within the Extremely Thermophilic, Plant Biomass-Degrading Genus Caldicellulosiruptor?

    PubMed Central

    Blumer-Schuette, Sara E.; Lewis, Derrick L.; Kelly, Robert M.

    2010-01-01

    Phylogenetic, microbiological, and comparative genomic analyses were used to examine the diversity among members of the genus Caldicellulosiruptor, with an eye toward the capacity of these extremely thermophilic bacteria to degrade the complex carbohydrate content of plant biomass. Seven species from this genus (C. saccharolyticus, C. bescii, C. hydrothermalis, C. owensensis, C. kronotskyensis, C. lactoaceticus, and C. kristjanssonii) were compared on the basis of 16S rRNA gene phylogeny and cross-species DNA-DNA hybridization to a whole-genome C. saccharolyticus oligonucleotide microarray, revealing that C. saccharolyticus was the most divergent within this group. Growth physiology of the seven Caldicellulosiruptor species on a range of carbohydrates showed that, while all could be cultivated on acid-pretreated switchgrass, only C. saccharolyticus, C. bescii, C. kronotskyensis, and C. lactoaceticus were capable of hydrolyzing Whatman no. 1 filter paper. Two-dimensional gel electrophoresis of the secretomes from cells grown on microcrystalline cellulose revealed that the cellulolytic species also had diverse secretome fingerprints. The C. saccharolyticus secretome contained a prominent S-layer protein that appears in the cellulolytic Caldicellulosiruptor species, suggesting a possible role in cell-substrate interactions. Growth physiology also correlated with glycoside hydrolase (GH) and carbohydrate-binding module (CBM) inventories for the seven bacteria, as deduced from draft genome sequence information. These inventories indicated that the absence of a single GH and CBM family was responsible for diminished cellulolytic capacity. Overall, the genus Caldicellulosiruptor appears to contain more genomic and physiological diversity than previously reported, and this argues for continued efforts to isolate new members from high-temperature terrestrial biotopes. PMID:20971878

  6. Assessing the effect of the time since transition to organic farming on plants and butterflies

    PubMed Central

    Jonason, Dennis; Andersson, Georg K S; Öckinger, Erik; Rundlöf, Maj; Smith, Henrik G; Bengtsson, Jan

    2011-01-01

    1.Environmental changes may not always result in rapid changes in species distributions, abundances or diversity. In order to estimate the effects of, for example, land-use changes caused by agri-environment schemes (AES) on biodiversity and ecosystem services, information on the time-lag between the application of the scheme and the responses of organisms is essential. 2.We examined the effects of time since transition (TST) to organic farming on plant species richness and butterfly species richness and abundance. Surveys were conducted in cereal fields and adjacent field margins on 60 farms, 20 conventional and 40 organic, in two regions in Sweden. The organic farms were transferred from conventional management between 1 and 25 years before the survey took place. The farms were selected along a gradient of landscape complexity, indicated by the proportion of arable land, so that farms with similar TST were represented in all landscape types. Organism responses were assessed using model averaging. 3.Plant and butterfly species richness was c.20% higher on organic farms and butterfly abundance was about 60% higher, compared with conventional farms. Time since transition affected butterfly abundance gradually over the 25-year period, resulting in a 100% increase. In contrast, no TST effect on plant or butterfly species richness was found, indicating that the main effect took place immediately after the transition to organic farming. 4.Increasing landscape complexity had a positive effect on butterfly species richness, but not on butterfly abundance or plant species richness. There was no indication that the speed of response to organic farming was affected by landscape complexity. 5.Synthesis and applications. The effect of organic farming on diversity was rapid for plant and butterfly species richness, whereas butterfly abundance increased gradually with time since transition. If time-lags in responses to AESs turn out to be common, long-term effects would need to be included in management recommendations and policy to capture the full potential of such schemes. PMID:21731110

  7. Exploring the Diversity of Plant DNA Viruses and Their Satellites Using Vector-Enabled Metagenomics on Whiteflies

    PubMed Central

    Ng, Terry Fei Fan; Duffy, Siobain; Polston, Jane E.; Bixby, Elise; Vallad, Gary E.; Breitbart, Mya

    2011-01-01

    Current knowledge of plant virus diversity is biased towards agents of visible and economically important diseases. Less is known about viruses that have not caused major diseases in crops, or viruses from native vegetation, which are a reservoir of biodiversity that can contribute to viral emergence. Discovery of these plant viruses is hindered by the traditional approach of sampling individual symptomatic plants. Since many damaging plant viruses are transmitted by insect vectors, we have developed “vector-enabled metagenomics” (VEM) to investigate the diversity of plant viruses. VEM involves sampling of insect vectors (in this case, whiteflies) from plants, followed by purification of viral particles and metagenomic sequencing. The VEM approach exploits the natural ability of highly mobile adult whiteflies to integrate viruses from many plants over time and space, and leverages the capability of metagenomics for discovering novel viruses. This study utilized VEM to describe the DNA viral community from whiteflies (Bemisia tabaci) collected from two important agricultural regions in Florida, USA. VEM successfully characterized the active and abundant viruses that produce disease symptoms in crops, as well as the less abundant viruses infecting adjacent native vegetation. PCR assays designed from the metagenomic sequences enabled the complete sequencing of four novel begomovirus genome components, as well as the first discovery of plant virus satellites in North America. One of the novel begomoviruses was subsequently identified in symptomatic Chenopodium ambrosiodes from the same field site, validating VEM as an effective method for proactive monitoring of plant viruses without a priori knowledge of the pathogens. This study demonstrates the power of VEM for describing the circulating viral community in a given region, which will enhance our understanding of plant viral diversity, and facilitate emerging plant virus surveillance and management of viral diseases. PMID:21544196

  8. Diversity of bacteria nesting the plant cover of north Sinai deserts, Egypt

    PubMed Central

    Hanna, Amira L.; Youssef, Hanan H.; Amer, Wafaa M.; Monib, Mohammed; Fayez, Mohammed; Hegazi, Nabil A.

    2012-01-01

    North Sinai deserts were surveyed for the predominant plant cover and for the culturable bacteria nesting their roots and shoots. Among 43 plant species reported, 13 are perennial (e.g. Fagonia spp., Pancratium spp.) and 30 annuals (e.g. Bromus spp., Erodium spp.). Eleven species possessed rhizo-sheath, e.g. Cyperus capitatus, Panicum turgidum and Trisetaria koelerioides. Microbiological analyses demonstrated: the great diversity and richness of associated culturable bacteria, in particular nitrogen-fixing bacteria (diazotrophs); the majority of bacterial residents were of true and/or putative diazotrophic nature; the bacterial populations followed an increasing density gradient towards the root surfaces; sizeable populations were able to reside inside the root (endorhizosphere) and shoot (endophyllosphere) tissues. Three hundred bacterial isolates were secured from studied spheres. The majority of nitrogen-fixing bacilli isolates belonged to Bacillus megaterium,Bacillus pumilus, Bacillus polymexa,Bacillus macerans,Bacillus circulans and Bacillus licheniformis. The family Enterobacteriaceae represented by Enterobacter agglomerans,Enterobacter sackazakii, Enterobacter cloacae, Serratia adorifera,Serratia liquefaciens and Klebsiella oxytoca. The non-Enterobacteriaceae population was rich in Pantoae spp., Agrobacterium rdiobacter, Pseudomonas vesicularis, Pseudomonas putida, Stenotrophomonas maltophilia, Ochrobactrum anthropi, Sphingomonas paucimobilis and Chrysemonas luteola.Gluconacetobacter diazotrophicus were reported inside root and shoot tissues of a number of tested plants. The dense bacterial populations reported speak well to the very possible significant role played by the endophytic bacterial populations in the survival, in respect of nutrition and health, of existing plants. Such groups of diazotrophs are good candidates, as bio-preparates, to support the growth of future field crops grown in deserts of north Sinai and irrigated by the water of El-Salam canal. PMID:25685397

  9. Diversity of bacteria nesting the plant cover of north Sinai deserts, Egypt.

    PubMed

    Hanna, Amira L; Youssef, Hanan H; Amer, Wafaa M; Monib, Mohammed; Fayez, Mohammed; Hegazi, Nabil A

    2013-01-01

    North Sinai deserts were surveyed for the predominant plant cover and for the culturable bacteria nesting their roots and shoots. Among 43 plant species reported, 13 are perennial (e.g. Fagonia spp., Pancratium spp.) and 30 annuals (e.g. Bromus spp., Erodium spp.). Eleven species possessed rhizo-sheath, e.g. Cyperus capitatus, Panicum turgidum and Trisetaria koelerioides. Microbiological analyses demonstrated: the great diversity and richness of associated culturable bacteria, in particular nitrogen-fixing bacteria (diazotrophs); the majority of bacterial residents were of true and/or putative diazotrophic nature; the bacterial populations followed an increasing density gradient towards the root surfaces; sizeable populations were able to reside inside the root (endorhizosphere) and shoot (endophyllosphere) tissues. Three hundred bacterial isolates were secured from studied spheres. The majority of nitrogen-fixing bacilli isolates belonged to Bacillus megaterium, Bacillus pumilus, Bacillus polymexa, Bacillus macerans, Bacillus circulans and Bacillus licheniformis. The family Enterobacteriaceae represented by Enterobacter agglomerans, Enterobacter sackazakii, Enterobacter cloacae, Serratia adorifera, Serratia liquefaciens and Klebsiella oxytoca. The non-Enterobacteriaceae population was rich in Pantoae spp., Agrobacterium rdiobacter, Pseudomonas vesicularis, Pseudomonas putida, Stenotrophomonas maltophilia, Ochrobactrum anthropi, Sphingomonas paucimobilis and Chrysemonas luteola. Gluconacetobacter diazotrophicus were reported inside root and shoot tissues of a number of tested plants. The dense bacterial populations reported speak well to the very possible significant role played by the endophytic bacterial populations in the survival, in respect of nutrition and health, of existing plants. Such groups of diazotrophs are good candidates, as bio-preparates, to support the growth of future field crops grown in deserts of north Sinai and irrigated by the water of El-Salam canal. PMID:25685397

  10. Genetic diversity of high-elevation populations of an endangered medicinal plant

    PubMed Central

    Nag, Akshay; Ahuja, Paramvir Singh; Sharma, Ram Kumar

    2015-01-01

    Intraspecific genetic variation in natural populations governs their potential to overcome challenging ecological and environmental conditions. In addition, knowledge of this variation is critical for the conservation and management of endangered plant taxa. Found in the Himalayas, Podophyllum hexandrum is an endangered high-elevation plant species that has great medicinal importance. Here we report on the genetic diversity analysis of 24 P. hexandrum populations (209 individuals), representing the whole of the Indian Himalayas. In the present study, seven amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) primer pairs generated 1677 fragments, of which 866 were found to be polymorphic. Neighbour joining clustering, principal coordinate analysis and STRUCTURE analysis clustered 209 individuals from 24 populations of the Indian Himalayan mountains into two major groups with a significant amount of gene flow (Nm = 2.13) and moderate genetic differentiation Fst(0.196), G?st(0.20). This suggests that, regardless of geographical location, all of the populations from the Indian Himalayas are intermixed and are composed broadly of two types of genetic populations. High variance partitioned within populations (80 %) suggests that most of the diversity is restricted to the within-population level. These results suggest two possibilities about the ancient population structure of P. hexandrum: either all of the populations in the geographical region of the Indian Himalayas are remnants of a once-widespread ancient population, or they originated from two types of genetic populations, which coexisted a long time ago, but subsequently separated as a result of long-distance dispersal and natural selection. High variance partitioned within the populations indicates that these populations have evolved in response to their respective environments over time, but low levels of heterozygosity suggest the presence of historical population bottlenecks. PMID:25416728

  11. Temperature alone does not explain phenological variation of diverse temperate plants under experimental warming.

    PubMed

    Marchin, Renée M; Salk, Carl F; Hoffmann, William A; Dunn, Robert R

    2015-08-01

    Anthropogenic climate change has altered temperate forest phenology, but how these trends will play out in the future is controversial. We measured the effect of experimental warming of 0.6-5.0 °C on the phenology of a diverse suite of 11 plant species in the deciduous forest understory (Duke Forest, North Carolina, USA) in a relatively warm year (2011) and a colder year (2013). Our primary goal was to dissect how temperature affects timing of spring budburst, flowering, and autumn leaf coloring for functional groups with different growth habits, phenological niches, and xylem anatomy. Warming advanced budburst of six deciduous woody species by 5-15 days and delayed leaf coloring by 18-21 days, resulting in an extension of the growing season by as much as 20-29 days. Spring temperature accumulation was strongly correlated with budburst date, but temperature alone cannot explain the diverse budburst responses observed among plant functional types. Ring-porous trees showed a consistent temperature response pattern across years, suggesting these species are sensitive to photoperiod. Conversely, diffuse-porous species responded differently between years, suggesting winter chilling may be more important in regulating budburst. Budburst of the ring-porous Quercus alba responded nonlinearly to warming, suggesting evolutionary constraints may limit changes in phenology, and therefore productivity, in the future. Warming caused a divergence in flowering times among species in the forest community, resulting in a longer flowering season by 10-16 days. Temperature was a good predictor of flowering for only four of the seven species studied here. Observations of interannual temperature variability overpredicted flowering responses in spring-blooming species, relative to our warming experiment, and did not consistently predict even the direction of flowering shifts. Experiments that push temperatures beyond historic variation are indispensable for improving predictions of future changes in phenology. PMID:25736981

  12. Genetic diversity of high-elevation populations of an endangered medicinal plant.

    PubMed

    Nag, Akshay; Ahuja, Paramvir Singh; Sharma, Ram Kumar

    2014-01-01

    Intraspecific genetic variation in natural populations governs their potential to overcome challenging ecological and environmental conditions. In addition, knowledge of this variation is critical for the conservation and management of endangered plant taxa. Found in the Himalayas, Podophyllum hexandrum is an endangered high-elevation plant species that has great medicinal importance. Here we report on the genetic diversity analysis of 24 P. hexandrum populations (209 individuals), representing the whole of the Indian Himalayas. In the present study, seven amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) primer pairs generated 1677 fragments, of which 866 were found to be polymorphic. Neighbour joining clustering, principal coordinate analysis and STRUCTURE analysis clustered 209 individuals from 24 populations of the Indian Himalayan mountains into two major groups with a significant amount of gene flow (Nm = 2.13) and moderate genetic differentiation Fst(0.196), G'st(0.20). This suggests that, regardless of geographical location, all of the populations from the Indian Himalayas are intermixed and are composed broadly of two types of genetic populations. High variance partitioned within populations (80 %) suggests that most of the diversity is restricted to the within-population level. These results suggest two possibilities about the ancient population structure of P. hexandrum: either all of the populations in the geographical region of the Indian Himalayas are remnants of a once-widespread ancient population, or they originated from two types of genetic populations, which coexisted a long time ago, but subsequently separated as a result of long-distance dispersal and natural selection. High variance partitioned within the populations indicates that these populations have evolved in response to their respective environments over time, but low levels of heterozygosity suggest the presence of historical population bottlenecks. PMID:25416728

  13. Biomass responses to elevated CO2, soil heterogeneity and diversity: an experimental assessment with grassland assemblages.

    PubMed

    Maestre, Fernando T; Reynolds, James F

    2007-03-01

    While it is well-established that the spatial distribution of soil nutrients (soil heterogeneity) influences the competitive ability and survival of individual plants, as well as the productivity of plant communities, there is a paucity of data on how soil heterogeneity and global change drivers interact to affect plant performance and ecosystem functioning. To evaluate the effects of elevated CO(2), soil heterogeneity and diversity (species richness and composition) on productivity, patterns of biomass allocation and root foraging precision, we conducted an experiment with grassland assemblages formed by monocultures, two- and three-species mixtures of Lolium perenne, Plantago lanceolata and Holcus lanatus. The experiment lasted for 90 days, and was conducted on microcosms built out of PVC pipe (length 38 cm, internal diameter 10 cm). When nutrients were heterogeneously supplied (in discrete patches), assemblages exhibited precise root foraging patterns, and had higher total, above- and belowground biomass. Greater aboveground biomass was observed under elevated CO(2). Species composition affected the below:aboveground biomass ratio and interacted with nutrient heterogeneity to determine belowground and total biomass. Species richness had no significant effects, and did not interact with either CO(2) or nutrient heterogeneity. Under elevated CO(2) conditions, the two- and three-species mixtures showed a clear trend towards underyielding. Our results show that differences among composition levels were dependent on soil heterogeneity, highlighting its potential role in modulating diversity-productivity relationships. PMID:17048009

  14. A literature review on the safety assessment of genetically modified plants.

    PubMed

    Domingo, José L; Giné Bordonaba, Jordi

    2011-05-01

    In recent years, there has been a notable concern on the safety of genetically modified (GM) foods/plants, an important and complex area of research, which demands rigorous standards. Diverse groups including consumers and environmental Non Governmental Organizations (NGO) have suggested that all GM foods/plants should be subjected to long-term animal feeding studies before approval for human consumption. In 2000 and 2006, we reviewed the information published in international scientific journals, noting that the number of references concerning human and animal toxicological/health risks studies on GM foods/plants was very limited. The main goal of the present review was to assess the current state-of-the-art regarding the potential adverse effects/safety assessment of GM plants for human consumption. The number of citations found in databases (PubMed and Scopus) has dramatically increased since 2006. However, new information on products such as potatoes, cucumber, peas or tomatoes, among others was not available. Corn/maize, rice, and soybeans were included in the present review. An equilibrium in the number research groups suggesting, on the basis of their studies, that a number of varieties of GM products (mainly maize and soybeans) are as safe and nutritious as the respective conventional non-GM plant, and those raising still serious concerns, was currently observed. Nevertheless, it should be noted that most of these studies have been conducted by biotechnology companies responsible of commercializing these GM plants. These findings suggest a notable advance in comparison with the lack of studies published in recent years in scientific journals by those companies. All this recent information is herein critically reviewed. PMID:21296423

  15. Quantifying the importance of plant functional diversity for ecosystem functioning and resilience under scenarios of climate change (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pavlick, R.; Drewry, D.; Kleidon, A.

    2013-12-01

    Dynamic Global Vegetation Models (DGVMs) typically employ only a small set of Plant Functional Types (PFTs) to represent the vast diversity of observed vegetation forms and functioning. There is growing evidence, however, that this abstraction may not adequately represent the observed variation in plant functional traits, which is thought to play an important role for many ecosystem functions and for ecosystem resilience to environmental change. The geographic distribution of PFTs in these models is also often based on empirical relationships between present-day climate and vegetation patterns. Projections of future climate change, however, point toward the possibility of novel regional climates, which could lead to no-analog vegetation compositions incompatible with the PFT paradigm. Here, we present results from the Jena Diversity-DGVM (JeDi-DGVM), a novel traits-based vegetation model, which simulates a large number of hypothetical plant growth strategies constrained by functional tradeoffs, thereby allowing for a more flexible temporal and spatial representation of the terrestrial biosphere. We run two sets of model experiments forced with the latest bias-corrected climate change scenarios from several different global climate models. In the first set, we simulate a diverse biosphere using a large number of plant growth strategies, allowing the modelled ecosystems to adapt through emergent changes in ecosystem composition. We then aggregate the surviving growth strategies from the first set of diverse simulations to a small number of biome-averaged growth strategies, recreating something akin to PFTs. We use this smaller set of PFT-like growth strategies to represent a sparse or low-diversity biosphere in the second set of model experiments. We quantify the importance of functional diversity by comparing key metrics of ecosystem functioning across the two sets of simulations. The results reveal the implications of using the common PFT vegetation modelling paradigm versus a more diverse approach and may help to quantify the value of biodiversity conservation efforts.

  16. Predicting plant diversity patterns in Madagascar: understanding the effects of climate and land cover change in a biodiversity hotspot.

    PubMed

    Brown, Kerry A; Parks, Katherine E; Bethell, Colin A; Johnson, Steig E; Mulligan, Mark

    2015-01-01

    Climate and land cover change are driving a major reorganization of terrestrial biotic communities in tropical ecosystems. In an effort to understand how biodiversity patterns in the tropics will respond to individual and combined effects of these two drivers of environmental change, we use species distribution models (SDMs) calibrated for recent climate and land cover variables and projected to future scenarios to predict changes in diversity patterns in Madagascar. We collected occurrence records for 828 plant genera and 2186 plant species. We developed three scenarios, (i.e., climate only, land cover only and combined climate-land cover) based on recent and future climate and land cover variables. We used this modelling framework to investigate how the impacts of changes to climate and land cover influenced biodiversity across ecoregions and elevation bands. There were large-scale climate- and land cover-driven changes in plant biodiversity across Madagascar, including both losses and gains in diversity. The sharpest declines in biodiversity were projected for the eastern escarpment and high elevation ecosystems. Sharp declines in diversity were driven by the combined climate-land cover scenarios; however, there were subtle, region-specific differences in model outputs for each scenario, where certain regions experienced relatively higher species loss under climate or land cover only models. We strongly caution that predicted future gains in plant diversity will depend on the development and maintenance of dispersal pathways that connect current and future suitable habitats. The forecast for Madagascar's plant diversity in the face of future environmental change is worrying: regional diversity will continue to decrease in response to the combined effects of climate and land cover change, with habitats such as ericoid thickets and eastern lowland and sub-humid forests particularly vulnerable into the future. PMID:25856241

  17. Species diversity and population status of threatened plants in different landscape elements of the Rohtang Pass, western Himalaya

    Microsoft Academic Search

    K. N. Singh; Gopichand; Amit Kumar; Brij Lal; N. P. Todaria

    2008-01-01

    This paper highlights the quantitative estimates of plant species diversity and ecosystems of the Rohtang Pass, which is one\\u000a of the most preferred visiting spots by tourists in Himachal Pradesh (H.P.), India. In spite of high pressure of anthropogenic\\u000a activities, the Rohtang Pass still harbours a variety of flowering plants with economic value, including various medicinal\\u000a herbs. In order to

  18. Assessment of filamentous fungal diversity using classic and molecular approaches: case study – Mediterranean ecosystem

    Microsoft Academic Search

    J. B. Guimarães; P. Pereira; L. Chambel; R. Tenreiro

    2011-01-01

    The fungal biodiversity on the phylloplane of two microclimatic zones of the Natural Park of Serra da Arrábida, Mata do Solitário and Fonte do Veado, was assessed by classical and molecular methods. 562 fungal isolates were obtained from leaf washings of five plant species, in Fonte do Veado and 250 in Mata do Solitário. The most frequently isolated genera were

  19. Prescription Opioid Abuse and Diversion in an Urban Community: The Results of an Ultra- Rapid Assessment

    PubMed Central

    Inciardi, James A.; Surratt, Hilary L.; Cicero, Theodore J.; Beard, Ronald A.

    2009-01-01

    Objective Prescription drug diversion is a topic about which comparatively little is known, and systematic information garnered from prescription drug abusers and dealers on the specific mechanisms of diversion is extremely limited. Design A pilot ultra-rapid assessment was carried out in Wilmington, Delaware, during December 2006 to better understand the scope and dynamics of prescription drug abuse and diversion. This involved focus groups with prescription drug abusers, and key informant interviews with police, regulatory officials, prescription drug dealers, and pill brokers. Results The primary sources of prescription drugs on the street were the elderly, pain patients, and doctor shoppers, as well as pill brokers and dealers who work with all of the former. The popularity of prescription drugs in the street market was rooted in the abusers’ perceptions of these drugs as: 1) less stigmatizing; 2) less dangerous; and, 3) less subject to legal consequences than illicit drugs. For many, the abuse of prescription opioids also appeared to serve as a gateway to heroin use. Conclusion The diversion of prescription opioids might be reduced through physician education focusing on: 1) recognizing that a patient is misusing and/or diverting prescribed medications; 2) considering a patient’s risk for opioid misuse before initiating opioid therapy; and, 3) understanding the variation in the abuse potential of different opioid medications currently on the market. Patient education also appears appropriate in the areas of safeguarding medications, disposal of unused medications, and understanding the consequences of manipulating physicians and selling their medications. PMID:19416440

  20. Aging assessment of large electric motors in nuclear power plants

    SciTech Connect

    Villaran, M.; Subudhi, M. [Brookhaven National Lab., Upton, NY (United States)

    1996-03-01

    Large electric motors serve as the prime movers to drive high capacity pumps, fans, compressors, and generators in a variety of nuclear plant systems. This study examined the stressors that cause degradation and aging in large electric motors operating in various plant locations and environments. The operating history of these machines in nuclear plant service was studied by review and analysis of failure reports in the NPRDS and LER databases. This was supplemented by a review of motor designs, and their nuclear and balance of plant applications, in order to characterize the failure mechanisms that cause degradation, aging, and failure in large electric motors. A generic failure modes and effects analysis for large squirrel cage induction motors was performed to identify the degradation and aging mechanisms affecting various components of these large motors, the failure modes that result, and their effects upon the function of the motor. The effects of large motor failures upon the systems in which they are operating, and on the plant as a whole, were analyzed from failure reports in the databases. The effectiveness of the industry`s large motor maintenance programs was assessed based upon the failure reports in the databases and reviews of plant maintenance procedures and programs.

  1. Host plant genus-level diversity is the best predictor of ectomycorrhizal fungal diversity in a Chinese

    E-print Network

    Bruns, Tom

    , Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100093, China, ¶Department of Soil Ecology, UFZ-Helmholtz Centre; Bahram et al. 2012). Ectomycorrhizal (EM) fungi are a major component of soil microbial communities to explain patterns of soil microbial diversity (Hooper et al. 2000; Waldrop et al. 2006). This hypothe- sis

  2. A Continent of Plant Defense Peptide Diversity: Cyclotides in Australian Hybanthus (Violaceae)W?

    PubMed Central

    Simonsen, Shane M.; Sando, Lillian; Ireland, David C.; Colgrave, Michelle L.; Bharathi, Rekha; Göransson, Ulf; Craik, David J.

    2005-01-01

    Cyclotides are plant-derived miniproteins that have the unusual features of a head-to-tail cyclized peptide backbone and a knotted arrangement of disulfide bonds. It had been postulated that they might be an especially large family of host defense agents, but this had not yet been tested by field data on cyclotide variation in wild plant populations. In this study, we sampled Australian Hybanthus (Violaceae) to gain an insight into the level of variation within populations, within species, and between species. A wealth of cyclotide diversity was discovered: at least 246 new cyclotides are present in the 11 species sampled, and 26 novel sequences were characterized. A new approach to the discovery of cyclotide sequences was developed based on the identification of a conserved sequence within a signal sequence in cyclotide precursors. The number of cyclotides in the Violaceae is now estimated to be >9000. Cyclotide physicochemical profiles were shown to be a useful taxonomic feature that reflected species and their morphological relationships. The novel sequences provided substantial insight into the tolerance of the cystine knot framework in cyclotides to amino acid substitutions and will facilitate protein engineering applications of this framework. PMID:16199617

  3. Food plant diversity as broad-scale determinant of avian frugivore richness

    PubMed Central

    Kissling, W. Daniel; Rahbek, Carsten; Böhning-Gaese, Katrin

    2007-01-01

    The causes of variation in animal species richness at large spatial scales are intensively debated. Here, we examine whether the diversity of food plants, contemporary climate and energy, or habitat heterogeneity determine species richness patterns of avian frugivores across sub-Saharan Africa. Path models indicate that species richness of Ficus (their fruits being one of the major food resources for frugivores in the tropics) has the strongest direct effect on richness of avian frugivores, whereas the influences of variables related to water–energy and habitat heterogeneity are mainly indirect. The importance of Ficus richness for richness of avian frugivores diminishes with decreasing specialization of birds on fruit eating, but is retained when accounting for spatial autocorrelation. We suggest that a positive relationship between food plant and frugivore species richness could result from niche assembly mechanisms (e.g. coevolutionary adaptations to fruit size, fruit colour or vertical stratification of fruit presentation) or, alternatively, from stochastic speciation–extinction processes. In any case, the close relationship between species richness of Ficus and avian frugivores suggests that figs are keystone resources for animal consumers, even at continental scales. PMID:17251107

  4. Food plant diversity as broad-scale determinant of avian frugivore richness.

    PubMed

    Kissling, W Daniel; Rahbek, Carsten; Böhning-Gaese, Katrin

    2007-03-22

    The causes of variation in animal species richness at large spatial scales are intensively debated. Here, we examine whether the diversity of food plants, contemporary climate and energy, or habitat heterogeneity determine species richness patterns of avian frugivores across sub-Saharan Africa. Path models indicate that species richness of Ficus (their fruits being one of the major food resources for frugivores in the tropics) has the strongest direct effect on richness of avian frugivores, whereas the influences of variables related to water-energy and habitat heterogeneity are mainly indirect. The importance of Ficus richness for richness of avian frugivores diminishes with decreasing specialization of birds on fruit eating, but is retained when accounting for spatial autocorrelation. We suggest that a positive relationship between food plant and frugivore species richness could result from niche assembly mechanisms (e.g. coevolutionary adaptations to fruit size, fruit colour or vertical stratification of fruit presentation) or, alternatively, from stochastic speciation-extinction processes. In any case, the close relationship between species richness of Ficus and avian frugivores suggests that figs are keystone resources for animal consumers, even at continental scales. PMID:17251107

  5. Phylogenetic analysis reveals conservation and diversification of micro RNA166 genes among diverse plant species.

    PubMed

    Barik, Suvakanta; SarkarDas, Shabari; Singh, Archita; Gautam, Vibhav; Kumar, Pramod; Majee, Manoj; Sarkar, Ananda K

    2014-01-01

    Similar to the majority of the microRNAs, mature miR166s are derived from multiple members of MIR166 genes (precursors) and regulate various aspects of plant development by negatively regulating their target genes (Class III HD-ZIP). The evolutionary conservation or functional diversification of miRNA166 family members remains elusive. Here, we show the phylogenetic relationships among MIR166 precursor and mature sequences from three diverse model plant species. Despite strong conservation, some mature miR166 sequences, such as ppt-miR166m, have undergone sequence variation. Critical sequence variation in ppt-miR166m has led to functional diversification, as it targets non-HD-ZIPIII gene transcript (s). MIR166 precursor sequences have diverged in a lineage specific manner, and both precursors and mature osa-miR166i/j are highly conserved. Interestingly, polycistronic MIR166s were present in Physcomitrella and Oryza but not in Arabidopsis. The nature of cis-regulatory motifs on the upstream promoter sequences of MIR166 genes indicates their possible contribution to the functional variation observed among miR166 species. PMID:24275521

  6. Utilizing common-garden and genetic diversity structure analysis to determine strategies for releasing wildland plant germplasm for rangeland revegetation

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Semi-arid rangelands in the western North America face many challenges due to invasive weedy species, wildfires, and past mismanagement. A diversity of plant species are needed to effectively revegetate degraded rangelands in this expansive area. Legumes native to western North America are of inte...

  7. Rhizosphere bacterial communities associated with long-lived perennial prairie plants vary in diversity, composition, and structure

    E-print Network

    Weiblen, George D

    composition, diversity, and structure among individual Andropogon gerardii Vitman (big bluestem) and Lespedeza microbial taxa on plant hosts and their roles in ecosystem functioning. Key words: Andropogon gerardii'espèce Andropogon gerardii Vitman (barbon de Gérard) et a` l'espèce Lespedeza capitata (trèfle arbustif). Les

  8. RT-PCR–RFLP for genetic diversity analysis of Tunisian Grapevine fanleaf virus isolates in their natural host plants

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Sami Fattouch; Hajer Acheche; Sonia M’hirsi; Lotfi Mellouli; Samir Bejar; Mohamed Marrakchi; Najib Marzouki

    2005-01-01

    Genetic diversity was characterized in 20 isolates of Grapevine fanleaf virus (GFLV) recovered from naturally infected grapevine plants (Vitis vinifera) in the North of Tunisia. Viral RNAs were isolated by oligoprobe capture, and a 605bp fragment containing a part of the viral coat protein gene was amplified by RT-PCR. Sequence variation among isolates was characterized by restriction fragment length polymorphism

  9. Comparative Genomics of Plant-Associated Pseudomonas spp.: Insights into Diversity and Inheritance of Traits Involved in Multitrophic Interactions

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Joyce E. Loper; Karl A. Hassan; Dmitri V. Mavrodi; Edward W. Davis; Chee Kent Lim; Brenda T. Shaffer; Liam D. H. Elbourne; Virginia O. Stockwell; Sierra L. Hartney; Katy Breakwell; Marcella D. Henkels; Sasha G. Tetu; Lorena I. Rangel; Teresa A. Kidarsa; Neil L. Wilson; Judith E. van de Mortel; Chunxu Song; Rachel Blumhagen; Diana Radune; Jessica B. Hostetler; Lauren M. Brinkac; A. Scott Durkin; Daniel A. Kluepfel; W. Patrick Wechter; Anne J. Anderson; Young Cheol Kim; Leland S. Pierson; Elizabeth A. Pierson; Steven E. Lindow; Donald Y. Kobayashi; Jos M. Raaijmakers; David M. Weller; Linda S. Thomashow; Andrew E. Allen; Ian T. Paulsen

    2012-01-01

    We provide here a comparative genome analysis of ten strains within the Pseudomonas fluorescens group including seven new genomic sequences. These strains exhibit a diverse spectrum of traits involved in biological control and other multitrophic interactions with plants, microbes, and insects. Multilocus sequence analysis placed the strains in three sub-clades, which was reinforced by high levels of synteny, size of

  10. Plant species diversity and soil quality in harvested and grazed boreal aspen stands of northeastern British Columbia

    Microsoft Academic Search

    M Krzic; R. F Newman; K Broersma

    2003-01-01

    Understory vegetation in aspen (Populus tremuloides Michx.) stands produces up to 50% of all forage on Crown land for domestic livestock grazing in the Peace River area of British Columbia (BC), Canada. The objective of this study was to determine the effects of clearcut harvesting and long-term cattle grazing on plant species diversity and soil quality in aspen cutblocks located

  11. Wetland Plant Guide for Assessing Habitat Impacts of Real-Time Salinity Management

    E-print Network

    Quinn, Nigel W.T.; Feldmann, Sara A.

    2004-01-01

    salinity and other conditions unfavorable to propagation of the most desirable moist soil plants.Plant Guide for Assessing Habitat Impacts of Real-Time SalinityPlant Herbarium Arizona State University Ammannia coccinea (Redstems) Stems Native, annual Low salinity

  12. Phenotypic and RAPD diversity among 80 germplasm accessions of the medicinal plant isabgol (Plantago ovata, Plantaginaceae).

    PubMed

    Singh, N; Lal, R K; Shasany, A K

    2009-01-01

    Plantago ovata, popularly known as isabgol, has great commercial and medicinal importance due to thin rosy white membranous seed husk. Isabgol seeds and husks have emollient, demulcent and laxative properties. We used both biometric and molecular techniques to assess the genetic variability and relatedness of 80 germplasm accessions of Plantago spp (P. ovata, P. lanceolata, and P. major) collected both from India and abroad. The range of D2 values (2.01-4890.73) indicated a very high degree of divergence among the accessions. Based on the degree of divergence, 80 accessions/genotypes were grouped into seven clusters. Thirty-six accessions were analyzed through RAPD profiling for similarity and genetic distances, using 20 random primers. Intraspecific differences in all three species were smaller [range for P. ovata (2-17%), P. lanceolata (3-15%), P. major (2-11%)] than interspecific diversity. These highly divergent lines could be used to produce superior hybrids. PMID:19876869

  13. A framework for chemical plant safety assessment under uncertainty.

    SciTech Connect

    Zeng, X.; Anitescu, M.; Pereira, C.; Regalbuto, M.

    2009-03-01

    We construct a framework for assessing the risk that the uncertainty in the plant feed and physical parameters may mask the loss of a reaction product. To model the plant, we use a nonlinear, quasi-steady-state model with stochastic input and parameters. We compute the probability that more than a certain product amount is diverted, given the statistics of the uncertainty in the plant feed, in the values of the chemical parameters, and in the output measurement. The uncertainty in the physical parameters is based on the one provided by the recently developed concept of thermochemical tables. We use Monte Carlo methods to compute the probabilities, based on a Cauchy-theorem-like approach to avoid making anything but the safest asymptotic assumptions, as well as to avoid the excessive noise in the region of low-probability events.

  14. Diversity and population structure of sewage derived microorganisms in wastewater treatment plant influent

    PubMed Central

    McLellan, S.L.; Huse, S.M.; Mueller-Spitz, S.R.; Andreishcheva, E.N.; Sogin, M.L.

    2009-01-01

    The release of untreated sewage introduces non-indigenous microbial populations of uncertain composition into surface waters. We used massively parallel 454 sequencing of hypervariable regions in rRNA genes to profile microbial communities from eight untreated sewage influent samples of two wastewater treatment plants (WWTP) in metropolitan Milwaukee. The sewage profiles included a discernable human fecal signature made up of several taxonomic groups including multiple Bifidobacteriaceae, Coriobacteriaceae, Bacteroidaceae, Lachnospiraceae, and Ruminococcaceae genera. The fecal signature made up a small fraction of the taxa present in sewage but the relative abundance of these sequence tags mirrored the population structures of human fecal samples. These genera were much more prevalent in the sewage influent than standard indicators species. High-abundance sequences from taxonomic groups within the Beta- and Gammaproteobacteria dominated the sewage samples but occurred at very low levels in fecal and surface water samples, suggesting that these organisms proliferate within the sewer system. Samples from Jones Island (JI – servicing residential plus a combined sewer system) and South Shore (SS – servicing a residential area) WWTPs had very consistent community profiles, with greater similarity between WWTPs on a given collection day than the same plant collected on different days. Rainfall increased influent flows at SS and JI WWTPs, and this corresponded to greater diversity in the community at both plants. Overall, the sewer system appears to be a defined environment with both infiltration of rainwater and stormwater inputs modulating community composition. Microbial sewage communities represent a combination of inputs from human fecal microbes and enrichment of specific microbes from the environment to form a unique population structure. PMID:19840106

  15. Reliability of a Test Battery Designed for Quickly and Safely Assessing Diverse Indices of Neuromuscular Function

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Spiering, Barry A.; Lee, Stuart M. C.; Mulavara, Ajitkumar P.; Bentley, Jason, R.; Buxton, Roxanne E.; Lawrence, Emily L.; Sinka, Joseph; Guilliams, Mark E.; Ploutz-Snyder, Lori L.; Bloomberg, Jacob J.

    2010-01-01

    Spaceflight affects nearly every physiological system. Spaceflight-induced alterations in physiological function translate to decrements in functional performance. Purpose: To develop a test battery for quickly and safely assessing diverse indices of neuromuscular performance. I. Quickly: Battery of tests can be completed in approx.30-40 min. II. Safely: a) No eccentric muscle actions or impact forces. b) Tests present little challenge to postural stability. III. Diverse indices: a) Strength: Excellent reliability (ICC = 0.99) b) Central activation: Very good reliability (ICC = 0.87) c) Power: Excellent reliability (ICC = 0.99) d) Endurance: Total work has excellent reliability (ICC = 0.99) e) Force steadiness: Poor reliability (ICC = 0.20 - 0.60) National

  16. Proceedings of the Global Summit on Medicinal Plants, Vol. 1: 112-118 (2004). Genetic Diversity and DNA Fingerprinting of Black Cohosh (Actaea racemosa)

    E-print Network

    Carpenter, Kent E.

    2004-01-01

    Proceedings of the Global Summit on Medicinal Plants, Vol. 1: 112-118 (2004). 112 Genetic Diversity Botanical Garden, Bronx, NY 10458, USA. Dept. of Plant and Soil Sciences, Medicinal Plant Program, and may have implications #12;Proceedings of the Global Summit on Medicinal Plants, Vol. 1: 112-118 (2004

  17. Communities of different plant diversity respond similarly to drought stress: experimental evidence from field non-weeded and greenhouse conditions.

    PubMed

    Lanta, Vojt?ch; Doležal, Ji?í; Zemková, Lenka; Lepš, Jan

    2012-06-01

    Accelerating rate of species loss has prompted researchers to study the role of species diversity in processes that control ecosystem functioning. Although negative impact of species loss has been documented, the evidence concerning its impact on ecosystem stability is still limited. Here, we studied the effects of declining species and functional diversity on plant community responses to drought in the field (open to weed colonization) and greenhouse conditions. Both species and functional diversity positively affected the average yields of field communities. However, this pattern was similar in both drought-stressed and control plots. No effect of diversity on community resistance, biomass recovery after drought and resilience was found because drought reduced biomass production similarly at each level of diversity by approximately 30%. The use of dissimilarity (characterized by Euclidean distance) revealed higher variation under changing environments (drought-stressed vs. control) in more diverse communities compared to less species-rich assemblages. In the greenhouse experiment, the effect of species diversity affected community resistance, indicating that more diverse communities suffered more from drought than species-poor ones. We conclude that our study did not support the insurance hypothesis (stability properties of a community should increase with species richness) because species diversity had an equivocal effect on ecosystem resistance and resilience in an environment held under non-weeded practice, regardless of the positive relationship between sown species diversity and community biomass production. More species-rich communities were less resistant against drought-stressed conditions than species-poor ones grown in greenhouse conditions. PMID:22580797

  18. Sampling Plant Diversity and Rarity at Landscape Scales: Importance of Sampling Time in Species Detectability

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Jian; Nielsen, Scott E.; Grainger, Tess N.; Kohler, Monica; Chipchar, Tim; Farr, Daniel R.

    2014-01-01

    Documenting and estimating species richness at regional or landscape scales has been a major emphasis for conservation efforts, as well as for the development and testing of evolutionary and ecological theory. Rarely, however, are sampling efforts assessed on how they affect detection and estimates of species richness and rarity. In this study, vascular plant richness was sampled in 356 quarter hectare time-unlimited survey plots in the boreal region of northeast Alberta. These surveys consisted of 15,856 observations of 499 vascular plant species (97 considered to be regionally rare) collected by 12 observers over a 2 year period. Average survey time for each quarter-hectare plot was 82 minutes, ranging from 20 to 194 minutes, with a positive relationship between total survey time and total plant richness. When survey time was limited to a 20-minute search, as in other Alberta biodiversity methods, 61 species were missed. Extending the survey time to 60 minutes, reduced the number of missed species to 20, while a 90-minute cut-off time resulted in the loss of 8 species. When surveys were separated by habitat type, 60 minutes of search effort sampled nearly 90% of total observed richness for all habitats. Relative to rare species, time-unlimited surveys had ?65% higher rare plant detections post-20 minutes than during the first 20 minutes of the survey. Although exhaustive sampling was attempted, observer bias was noted among observers when a subsample of plots was re-surveyed by different observers. Our findings suggest that sampling time, combined with sample size and observer effects, should be considered in landscape-scale plant biodiversity surveys. PMID:24740179

  19. A methodology for assessment of nuclear power plant seismic margin

    SciTech Connect

    Reed, J.W. (Benjamin (J.R.) and Associates, Inc., Mountain View, CA (United States)); Kennedy, R.P. (Structural Mechanics Consulting, Inc., Yorba Linda, CA (United States)); Buttemer, D.R. (Pickard, Lowe and Garrick, Inc., Newport Beach, CA (United States)); Idriss, I.M. (California Univ., Davis, CA (United States). Dept. of Civil Engineering); Moore, D.P.; Barr, T.; Wooten, K.D.; Smith, J.E. (South

    1991-08-01

    EPRI's seismic margin methodology enables utility engineers to quantify a nuclear power plant's ability to withstand an earthquake greater than design and still safety shut down for a least 72 hours. This cost-effective, practical methodology used generic screening of systems and component seismic reggedness and does not require probabilistic calculations. The revision adds depth, detail, and more complete procedures to the original report but does not change the basic method. The seismic margin methodology enables engineers to choose a functional success path and several alternatives to shut down the plant and to identify the subset of plant structures and components associated with the path selected. The methodology further provides guidelines for screening the seismic ruggedness of subset components and structures. Components that satisfy screening criteria require no further evaluation. Remaining components require deterministic evaluations using in-structure motions calculated for the earthquake being assessed. The seismic margin earthquake (SME) is chosen to be sufficiently larger than the SSE to establish a significant seismic margin. Methodology procedures determine the weakest link components and establish the HCLPF level of ground moton for which the plant can safely shut down. Plant walkdowns ensure component compliance with screening guideline conditions. The revision gives detailed methods for calculating HCLPF values for an extensive variety of components.

  20. Post-fire salvage logging alters species composition and reduces cover, richness, and diversity in Mediterranean plant communities.

    PubMed

    Leverkus, Alexandro B; Lorite, Juan; Navarro, Francisco B; Sánchez-Cañete, Enrique P; Castro, Jorge

    2014-01-15

    An intense debate exists on the effects of post-fire salvage logging on plant community regeneration, but scant data are available derived from experimental studies. We analyzed the effects of salvage logging on plant community regeneration in terms of species richness, diversity, cover, and composition by experimentally managing a burnt forest on a Mediterranean mountain (Sierra Nevada, S Spain). In each of three plots located at different elevations, three replicates of three treatments were implemented seven months after the fire, differing in the degree of intervention: "Non-Intervention" (all trees left standing), "Partial Cut plus Lopping" (felling 90% of the trees, cutting the main branches, and leaving all the biomass in situ), and "Salvage Logging" (felling and piling the logs, and masticating the woody debris). Plant composition in each treatment was monitored two years after the fire in linear point transects. Post-fire salvage logging was associated with reduced species richness, Shannon diversity, and total plant cover. Moreover, salvaged sites hosted different species assemblages and 25% lower cover of seeder species (but equal cover of resprouters) compared to the other treatments. Cover of trees and shrubs was also lowest in Salvage Logging, which could suggest a potential slow-down of forest regeneration. Most of these results were consistent among the three plots despite plots hosting different plant communities. Concluding, our study suggests that salvage logging may reduce species richness and diversity, as well as the recruitment of woody species, which could delay the natural regeneration of the ecosystem. PMID:24412981

  1. Methodology and Process for Condition Assessment at Existing Hydropower Plants

    SciTech Connect

    Zhang, Qin Fen [ORNL] [ORNL; Smith, Brennan T [ORNL] [ORNL; Cones, Marvin [Mesa Associates, Inc.] [Mesa Associates, Inc.; March, Patrick [Hydro Performance Processes, Inc.] [Hydro Performance Processes, Inc.; Dham, Rajesh [U.S. Department of Energy] [U.S. Department of Energy; Spray, Michael [New West Technologies, LLC.] [New West Technologies, LLC.

    2012-01-01

    Hydropower Advancement Project was initiated by the U.S. Department of Energy Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy to develop and implement a systematic process with a standard methodology to identify the opportunities of performance improvement at existing hydropower facilities and to predict and trend the overall condition and improvement opportunity within the U.S. hydropower fleet. The concept of performance for the HAP focuses on water use efficiency how well a plant or individual unit converts potential energy to electrical energy over a long-term averaging period of a year or more. The performance improvement involves not only optimization of plant dispatch and scheduling but also enhancement of efficiency and availability through advanced technology and asset upgrades, and thus requires inspection and condition assessment for equipment, control system, and other generating assets. This paper discusses the standard methodology and process for condition assessment of approximately 50 nationwide facilities, including sampling techniques to ensure valid expansion of the 50 assessment results to the entire hydropower fleet. The application and refining process and the results from three demonstration assessments are also presented in this paper.

  2. Assessing the diversity of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi in semiarid shrublands dominated by Artemisia tridentata ssp. wyomingensis.

    PubMed

    Carter, Keith A; Smith, James F; White, Merlin M; Serpe, Marcelo D

    2014-05-01

    Variation in the abiotic environment and host plant preferences can affect the composition of arbuscular mycorrhizal (AMF) assemblages. This study analyzed the AMF taxa present in soil and seedlings of Artemisia tridentata ssp. wyomingensis collected from sagebrush steppe communities in southwestern Idaho, USA. Our aims were to determine the AMF diversity within and among these communities and the extent to which preferential AMF-plant associations develop during seedling establishment. Mycorrhizae were identified using molecular methods following DNA extraction from field and pot culture samples. The extracted DNA was amplified using Glomeromycota specific primers, and identification of AMF was based on phylogenetic analysis of sequences from the large subunit-D2 rDNA region. The phylogenetic analyses revealed seven phylotypes, two within the Claroideoglomeraceae and five within the Glomeraceae. Four phylotypes clustered with known species including Claroideoglomus claroideum, Rhizophagus irregularis, Glomus microaggregatum, and Funneliformis mosseae. The other three phylotypes were similar to several published sequences not included in the phylogenetic analysis, but all of these were from uncultured and unnamed glomeromycetes. Pairwise distance analysis revealed some phylotypes with high genetic variation. The most diverse was the phylotype that included R. irregularis, which contained sequences showing pairwise differences up to 12 %. Most of the diversity in AMF sequences occurred within sites. The smaller genetic differentiation detected among sites was correlated with differences in soil texture. In addition, multiplication in pot cultures led to differentiation of AMF communities. Comparison of sequences obtained from the soil with those from A. tridentata roots revealed no significant differences between the AMF present in these samples. Overall, the sites sampled were dominated by cosmopolitan AMF taxa, and young seedlings of A. tridentata ssp. wyomingensis were colonized in relation to the abundance of these taxa in the soil. PMID:24249492

  3. Genetic diversity in Tunisian Crataegus azarolus L. var. aronia L. populations assessed using RAPD markers

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Chayma Rajeb; Chokri Messaoud; Hnia Chograni; Afef Bejaoui; Abdennacer Boulila; Mohamed Nejib Rejeb; Mohamed Boussaid

    2010-01-01

    – \\u000a \\u000a • The genetic diversity of nine wild Tunisian Crataegus azarolus var. aronia L. populations from different bioclimates was assessed using RAPD markers.\\u000a \\u000a \\u000a \\u000a \\u000a – \\u000a \\u000a • Eight selected primers generated a total of 105 bands, 81 of which were polymorphic. Shannon’s index (H?) ranged from 0.222 to 0.278 according to a population with an average of 0.245. The genetic variation within

  4. Genetic diversity in different populations of sloths assessed by DNA fingerprinting.

    PubMed

    Moraes, N; Morgante, J S; Miyaki, C Y

    2002-08-01

    In this study we analyzed a population of Bradypus torquatus with individuals originally distributed in different localities of Bahia, and two populations of B. variegatus with individuals from Bahia and São Paulo States. Using the DNA fingerprinting method, we assessed the genetic variability within and between populations. Analysis of the DNA profiles revealed genetic similarity indices ranging from 0.34 +/- 0.07 to 0.87 +/- 0.04. Similar low levels of genetic variability were found only in isolated mammalian populations or among related individuals. This study presents the first analyses of genetic diversity in sloth populations. PMID:12530188

  5. Selection of superior lentil (Lens esculenta M.) genotypes by assessing character association and genetic diversity.

    PubMed

    Nath, U K; Rani, Santona; Paul, M R; Alam, M N; Horneburg, B

    2014-01-01

    Lentil is one of the most important pulse crops in the world as well as in Bangladesh. It is now considered a main component for training and body building practising in first world countries. Yield varies tremendously from year to year and location to location. Therefore, it is very important to find genotypes that perform consistently well even in ecological farming systems without any intercultural operations. Twenty lentil genotypes were tested during the period from November 2010 to March 2011 and from December 2011 to March 2012 with three replicates in each season to determine genetic variability, diversity, characters association, and selection indices for better grain yield. The experiment was conducted at the breeding field of the Department of Genetics and Plant Breeding, Bangladesh Agricultural University, Mymensingh. This study revealed that all the genotypes possess a high amount of genetic diversity. Plant height and 100-grain weight showed significant positive correlation with grain yield plant(-1) that was also confirmed by path analysis as the highest direct effect on grain yield. The genotypes BM-513 and BM-941 were found to be the best performer in both the seasons and were considered as consistent genotype. The genotypes were grouped into four clusters based on Euclidean distance following Ward's method and RAPD analysis. However, discriminant function analysis revealed a progressive increase in the efficiency of selection and BM-70 ranked as the best followed by the genotypes BM-739, BM-680, BM-185, and BM-513. These genotypes might be recommended for farmers' cultivation in ecological farming in Bangladesh. PMID:25580457

  6. Isolation, diversity, and antimicrobial activity of rare actinobacteria from medicinal plants of tropical rain forests in Xishuangbanna, China.

    PubMed

    Qin, Sheng; Li, Jie; Chen, Hua-Hong; Zhao, Guo-Zhen; Zhu, Wen-Yong; Jiang, Cheng-Lin; Xu, Li-Hua; Li, Wen-Jun

    2009-10-01

    Endophytic actinobacteria are relatively unexplored as potential sources of novel species and novel natural products for medical and commercial exploitation. Xishuangbanna is recognized throughout the world for its diverse flora, especially the rain forest plants, many of which have indigenous pharmaceutical histories. However, little is known about the endophytic actinobacteria of this tropical area. In this work, we studied the diversity of actinobacteria isolated from medicinal plants collected from tropical rain forests in Xishuangbanna. By the use of different selective isolation media and methods, a total of 2,174 actinobacteria were isolated. Forty-six isolates were selected on the basis of their morphologies on different media and were further characterized by 16S rRNA gene sequencing. The results showed an unexpected level of diversity, with 32 different genera. To our knowledge, this is the first report describing the isolation of Saccharopolyspora, Dietzia, Blastococcus, Dactylosporangium, Promicromonospora, Oerskovia, Actinocorallia, and Jiangella species from endophytic environments. At least 19 isolates are considered novel taxa by our current research. In addition, all 46 isolates were tested for antimicrobial activity and were screened for the presence of genes encoding polyketide synthetases and nonribosomal peptide synthetases. The results confirm that the medicinal plants of Xishuangbanna represent an extremely rich reservoir for the isolation of a significant diversity of actinobacteria, including novel species, that are potential sources for the discovery of biologically active compounds. PMID:19648362

  7. Isolation, Diversity, and Antimicrobial Activity of Rare Actinobacteria from Medicinal Plants of Tropical Rain Forests in Xishuangbanna, China? †

    PubMed Central

    Qin, Sheng; Li, Jie; Chen, Hua-Hong; Zhao, Guo-Zhen; Zhu, Wen-Yong; Jiang, Cheng-Lin; Xu, Li-Hua; Li, Wen-Jun

    2009-01-01

    Endophytic actinobacteria are relatively unexplored as potential sources of novel species and novel natural products for medical and commercial exploitation. Xishuangbanna is recognized throughout the world for its diverse flora, especially the rain forest plants, many of which have indigenous pharmaceutical histories. However, little is known about the endophytic actinobacteria of this tropical area. In this work, we studied the diversity of actinobacteria isolated from medicinal plants collected from tropical rain forests in Xishuangbanna. By the use of different selective isolation media and methods, a total of 2,174 actinobacteria were isolated. Forty-six isolates were selected on the basis of their morphologies on different media and were further characterized by 16S rRNA gene sequencing. The results showed an unexpected level of diversity, with 32 different genera. To our knowledge, this is the first report describing the isolation of Saccharopolyspora, Dietzia, Blastococcus, Dactylosporangium, Promicromonospora, Oerskovia, Actinocorallia, and Jiangella species from endophytic environments. At least 19 isolates are considered novel taxa by our current research. In addition, all 46 isolates were tested for antimicrobial activity and were screened for the presence of genes encoding polyketide synthetases and nonribosomal peptide synthetases. The results confirm that the medicinal plants of Xishuangbanna represent an extremely rich reservoir for the isolation of a significant diversity of actinobacteria, including novel species, that are potential sources for the discovery of biologically active compounds. PMID:19648362

  8. Value impact assessment: A preliminary assessment of improvement opportunities at the Quantico Central Heating Plant

    SciTech Connect

    Brambley, M.R.; Weakley, S.A.

    1990-09-01

    This report presents the results of a preliminary assessment of opportunities for improvement at the US Marine Corps (USMC) Quantico, Virginia, Central Heating Plant (CHP). This study is part of a program intended to provide the CHP staff with a computerized Artificial Intelligence (AI) decision support system that will assist in a more efficient, reliable, and safe operation of their plant. As part of the effort to provide the AI decision support system, a team of six scientists and engineers from the Pacific Northwest Laboratory (PNL) visited the plant to characterize the conditions and environment of the CHP. This assessment resulted in a list of potential performance improvement opportunities at the CHP. In this report, 12 of these opportunities are discussed and qualitatively analyzed. 70 refs., 7 figs., 6 tabs.

  9. Metabolization of the bacteriostatic agent triclosan in edible plants and its consequences for plant uptake assessment.

    PubMed

    Macherius, André; Eggen, Trine; Lorenz, Wilhelm; Moeder, Monika; Ondruschka, Jelka; Reemtsma, Thorsten

    2012-10-01

    Persistent environmental contaminants may enter agricultural fields via the application of sewage sludge, by irrigation with treated municipal wastewater or by manuring. It has been shown that such contaminants can be incorporated into crop plants. The metabolism of the bacteriostatic agents triclocarban, triclosan, and its transformation product methyl triclosan was investigated after their uptake into carrot cell cultures. A fast metabolization of triclosan was observed and eight so far unknown phase II metabolites, conjugates with saccharides, disaccharides, malonic acid, and sulfate, were identified by liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry. Triclocarban and methyl triclosan lack a phenolic group and remained unaltered in the cell cultures. Phase I metabolization was not observed for any of the compounds. All eight triclosan conjugates identified in the cell cultures were also detected in extracts of intact carrot plants cultivated on triclosan contaminated soils. Their total amount in the plants was assessed to exceed the amount of the triclosan itself by a factor of 5. This study shows that a disregard of conjugates in studies on plant uptake of environmental contaminants may severely underestimates the extent of uptake into plants and, eventually, the potential human exposure to contaminants via food of plant origin. PMID:22989227

  10. Mapping genetic diversity of cherimoya (Annona cherimola Mill.): application of spatial analysis for conservation and use of plant genetic resources.

    PubMed

    Zonneveld, Maarten van; Scheldeman, Xavier; Escribano, Pilar; Viruel, María A; Van Damme, Patrick; Garcia, Willman; Tapia, César; Romero, José; Sigueñas, Manuel; Hormaza, José I

    2012-01-01

    There is a growing call for inventories that evaluate geographic patterns in diversity of plant genetic resources maintained on farm and in species' natural populations in order to enhance their use and conservation. Such evaluations are relevant for useful tropical and subtropical tree species, as many of these species are still undomesticated, or in incipient stages of domestication and local populations can offer yet-unknown traits of high value to further domestication. For many outcrossing species, such as most trees, inbreeding depression can be an issue, and genetic diversity is important to sustain local production. Diversity is also crucial for species to adapt to environmental changes. This paper explores the possibilities of incorporating molecular marker data into Geographic Information Systems (GIS) to allow visualization and better understanding of spatial patterns of genetic diversity as a key input to optimize conservation and use of plant genetic resources, based on a case study of cherimoya (Annona cherimola Mill.), a Neotropical fruit tree species. We present spatial analyses to (1) improve the understanding of spatial distribution of genetic diversity of cherimoya natural stands and cultivated trees in Ecuador, Bolivia and Peru based on microsatellite molecular markers (SSRs); and (2) formulate optimal conservation strategies by revealing priority areas for in situ conservation, and identifying existing diversity gaps in ex situ collections. We found high levels of allelic richness, locally common alleles and expected heterozygosity in cherimoya's putative centre of origin, southern Ecuador and northern Peru, whereas levels of diversity in southern Peru and especially in Bolivia were significantly lower. The application of GIS on a large microsatellite dataset allows a more detailed prioritization of areas for in situ conservation and targeted collection across the Andean distribution range of cherimoya than previous studies could do, i.e. at province and department level in Ecuador and Peru, respectively. PMID:22253801

  11. Mapping Genetic Diversity of Cherimoya (Annona cherimola Mill.): Application of Spatial Analysis for Conservation and Use of Plant Genetic Resources

    PubMed Central

    van Zonneveld, Maarten; Scheldeman, Xavier; Escribano, Pilar; Viruel, María A.; Van Damme, Patrick; Garcia, Willman; Tapia, César; Romero, José; Sigueñas, Manuel; Hormaza, José I.

    2012-01-01

    There is a growing call for inventories that evaluate geographic patterns in diversity of plant genetic resources maintained on farm and in species' natural populations in order to enhance their use and conservation. Such evaluations are relevant for useful tropical and subtropical tree species, as many of these species are still undomesticated, or in incipient stages of domestication and local populations can offer yet-unknown traits of high value to further domestication. For many outcrossing species, such as most trees, inbreeding depression can be an issue, and genetic diversity is important to sustain local production. Diversity is also crucial for species to adapt to environmental changes. This paper explores the possibilities of incorporating molecular marker data into Geographic Information Systems (GIS) to allow visualization and better understanding of spatial patterns of genetic diversity as a key input to optimize conservation and use of plant genetic resources, based on a case study of cherimoya (Annona cherimola Mill.), a Neotropical fruit tree species. We present spatial analyses to (1) improve the understanding of spatial distribution of genetic diversity of cherimoya natural stands and cultivated trees in Ecuador, Bolivia and Peru based on microsatellite molecular markers (SSRs); and (2) formulate optimal conservation strategies by revealing priority areas for in situ conservation, and identifying existing diversity gaps in ex situ collections. We found high levels of allelic richness, locally common alleles and expected heterozygosity in cherimoya's putative centre of origin, southern Ecuador and northern Peru, whereas levels of diversity in southern Peru and especially in Bolivia were significantly lower. The application of GIS on a large microsatellite dataset allows a more detailed prioritization of areas for in situ conservation and targeted collection across the Andean distribution range of cherimoya than previous studies could do, i.e. at province and department level in Ecuador and Peru, respectively. PMID:22253801

  12. Assessment of genetic and functional diversity of phosphate solubilizing fluorescent pseudomonads isolated from rhizospheric soil

    PubMed Central

    Naik, Popavath Ravindra; Raman, Gurusamy; Narayanan, Kannan Badri; Sakthivel, Natarajan

    2008-01-01

    Background Phosphorus is an essential macronutrient for the growth of plants. However, in most soils a large portion of phosphorus becomes insoluble and therefore, unavailable to plants. Knowledge on biodiversity of phosphate-solubilizing fluorescent pseudomonads is essential to understand their ecological role and their utilization in sustainable agriculture. Results Of 443 fluorescent pseudomonad strains tested, 80 strains (18%) showed positive for the solubilization of tri-calcium phosphate (Ca3(PO4)2) by the formation of visible dissolution halos on Pikovskaya's agar. These phosphate solubilizing strains showed high variability in utilizing various carbon sources. Numerical taxonomy of the phosphate solubilizing strains based on their carbon source utilization profiles resulted into three major phenons at a 0.76 similarity coefficient level. Genotypic analyses of strains by BOX (bacterial repetitive BOX element)-polymerase chain reaction (PCR) resulted into three distinct genomic clusters and 26 distinct BOX profiles at a 80% similarity level. On the basis of phenotypic characterization and 16S rRNA gene phylogenetic analyses strains were identified as Pseudomonas aeruginosa, P. mosselii, P. monteilii, P. plecoglossicida, P. putida, P. fulva and P. fluorescens. These phosphate solubilizing strains also showed the production of plant growth promoting enzymes, hormones and exhibited antagonism against phytopathogenic fungi that attack on various crops. Gene specific primers have identified the putative antibiotic producing strains. These putative strains were grown in fermentation media and production of antibiotics was confirmed by thin layer chromatography (TLC) and high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). Conclusion Present study revealed a high degree of functional and genetic diversity among the phosphate solubilizing fluorescent pseudomonad bacteria. Due to their innate potential of producing an array of plant growth promoting enzymes, hormones and antifungal metabolites these phosphate solubilizing strains are considered to play a vital role in plant growth promotion, disease suppression and subsequent enhancement of yield. PMID:19099598

  13. High DNA Sequence Diversity in Pericentromeric Genes of the Plant Arabidopsis lyrata

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Akira Kawabe; Alan Forrest; Stephen I. Wright; Deborah Charlesworth

    2008-01-01

    Differences in neutral diversity at different loci are predicted to arise due to differences in mutation rates and from the ''hitchhiking'' effects of natural selection. Consistent with hitchhiking models, Drosophila melanogaster chromosome regions with very low recombination have unusually low nucleotide diversity. We compared levels of diversity from five pericentromeric regions with regions of normal recombination in Arabidopsis lyrata, an

  14. Measuring the fate of plant diversity: towards a foundation for future monitoring and opportunities for urgent action

    Microsoft Academic Search

    E. Nic Lughadha; J. Baillie; W. Barthlott; N. A. Brummitt; M. R. Cheek; A. Farjon; R. Govaerts; K. A. Hardwick; C. Hilton-Taylor; T. R. Meagher; J. Moat; J. Mutke; A. J. Paton; L. J. Pleasants; V. Savolainen; G. E. Schatz; P. Smith; I. Turner; P. Wyse-Jackson; P. R. Crane

    2005-01-01

    Vascular plants are often considered to be among the better known large groups of organisms, but gaps in the available baseline data are extensive, and recent estimates of total known (described) seed plant species range from 200 000 to 422 000. Of these, global assessments of conservation status using International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) categories and criteria

  15. Clonal diversity and conservation genetics of the medicinal plant Carapichea ipecacuanha (Rubiaceae)

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    The roots of the understorey shrub Carapichea ipecacuanha (ipecac) have medicinal properties, and the uprooting of wild plants has supplied most of the world demand for this species. Although under severe population decline, C. ipecacuanha lacks legal protection. In the wild, the aerial stems of ipecac clump together to form clusters with well-defined borders. Cluster size may range from several to hundreds of aerial stems. To investigate the extent of clonality among aerial stems in ipecac clusters, we sampled 50 wild clusters (a total of 291 aerial stems) and screened them with 89 inter-simple sequence repeat (ISSR) markers. The 291 aerial stems were grouped into 42 putative clones. The clonal groups generally consisted of aerial stems from the same cluster, and there was little or no genetic differentiation among aerial stems at the cluster level. These findings suggest that strategies designed to conserve ipecac in situ should not rely upon census data, which are based on the number of aerial stems per cluster and the number of clusters per population, because such data greatly underestimate the species effective population size and genetic diversity. Our results also indicate that this species needs protection at a federal level. PMID:21637610

  16. Diversity and dynamics of Archaea in an activated sludge wastewater treatment plant

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background The activated sludge process is one of the most widely used methods for treatment of wastewater and the microbial community composition in the sludge is important for the process operation. While the bacterial communities have been characterized in various activated sludge systems little is known about archaeal communities in activated sludge. The diversity and dynamics of the Archaea community in a full-scale activated sludge wastewater treatment plant were investigated by fluorescence in situ hybridization, terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism analysis and cloning and sequencing of 16S rRNA genes. Results The Archaea community was dominated by Methanosaeta-like species. During a 15?month period major changes in the community composition were only observed twice despite seasonal variations in environmental and operating conditions. Water temperature appeared to be the process parameter that affected the community composition the most. Several terminal restriction fragments also showed strong correlations with sludge properties and effluent water properties. The Archaea were estimated to make up 1.6% of total cell numbers in the activated sludge and were present both as single cells and colonies of varying sizes. Conclusions The results presented here show that Archaea can constitute a constant and integral part of the activated sludge and that it can therefore be useful to include Archaea in future studies of microbial communities in activated sludge. PMID:22784022

  17. Selenium hyperaccumulators harbor a diverse endophytic bacterial community characterized by high selenium resistance and plant growth promoting properties.

    PubMed

    Sura-de Jong, Martina; Reynolds, Ray J B; Richterova, Klara; Musilova, Lucie; Staicu, Lucian C; Chocholata, Iva; Cappa, Jennifer J; Taghavi, Safiyh; van der Lelie, Daniel; Frantik, Tomas; Dolinova, Iva; Strejcek, Michal; Cochran, Alyssa T; Lovecka, Petra; Pilon-Smits, Elizabeth A H

    2015-01-01

    Selenium (Se)-rich plants may be used to provide dietary Se to humans and livestock, and also to clean up Se-polluted soils or waters. This study focused on endophytic bacteria of plants that hyperaccumulate selenium (Se) to 0.5-1% of dry weight. Terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism (T-RFLP) analysis was used to compare the diversity of endophytic bacteria of hyperaccumulators Stanleya pinnata (Brassicaceae) and Astragalus bisulcatus (Fabaceae) with those from related non-accumulators Physaria bellii (Brassicaceae) and Medicago sativa (Fabaceae) collected on the same, seleniferous site. Hyperaccumulators and non-accumulators showed equal T-RF diversity. Parsimony analysis showed that T-RFs from individuals of the same species were more similar to each other than to those from other species, regardless of plant Se content or spatial proximity. Cultivable endophytes from hyperaccumulators S. pinnata and A. bisulcatus were further identified and characterized. The 66 bacterial morphotypes were shown by MS MALDI-TOF Biotyper analysis and 16S rRNA gene sequencing to include strains of Bacillus, Pseudomonas, Pantoea, Staphylococcus, Paenibacillus, Advenella, Arthrobacter, and Variovorax. Most isolates were highly resistant to selenate and selenite (up to 200 mM) and all could reduce selenite to red elemental Se, reduce nitrite and produce siderophores. Seven isolates were selected for plant inoculation and found to have plant growth promoting properties, both in pure culture and when co-cultivated with crop species Brassica juncea (Brassicaceae) or M. sativa. There were no effects on plant Se accumulation. We conclude that Se hyperaccumulators harbor an endophytic bacterial community in their natural seleniferous habitat that is equally diverse to that of comparable non-accumulators. The hyperaccumulator endophytes are characterized by high Se resistance, capacity to produce elemental Se and plant growth promoting properties. PMID:25784919

  18. Selenium hyperaccumulators harbor a diverse endophytic bacterial community characterized by high selenium resistance and plant growth promoting properties

    PubMed Central

    Sura-de Jong, Martina; Reynolds, Ray J. B.; Richterova, Klara; Musilova, Lucie; Staicu, Lucian C.; Chocholata, Iva; Cappa, Jennifer J.; Taghavi, Safiyh; van der Lelie, Daniel; Frantik, Tomas; Dolinova, Iva; Strejcek, Michal; Cochran, Alyssa T.; Lovecka, Petra; Pilon-Smits, Elizabeth A. H.

    2015-01-01

    Selenium (Se)-rich plants may be used to provide dietary Se to humans and livestock, and also to clean up Se-polluted soils or waters. This study focused on endophytic bacteria of plants that hyperaccumulate selenium (Se) to 0.5–1% of dry weight. Terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism (T-RFLP) analysis was used to compare the diversity of endophytic bacteria of hyperaccumulators Stanleya pinnata (Brassicaceae) and Astragalus bisulcatus (Fabaceae) with those from related non-accumulators Physaria bellii (Brassicaceae) and Medicago sativa (Fabaceae) collected on the same, seleniferous site. Hyperaccumulators and non-accumulators showed equal T-RF diversity. Parsimony analysis showed that T-RFs from individuals of the same species were more similar to each other than to those from other species, regardless of plant Se content or spatial proximity. Cultivable endophytes from hyperaccumulators S. pinnata and A. bisulcatus were further identified and characterized. The 66 bacterial morphotypes were shown by MS MALDI-TOF Biotyper analysis and 16S rRNA gene sequencing to include strains of Bacillus, Pseudomonas, Pantoea, Staphylococcus, Paenibacillus, Advenella, Arthrobacter, and Variovorax. Most isolates were highly resistant to selenate and selenite (up to 200 mM) and all could reduce selenite to red elemental Se, reduce nitrite and produce siderophores. Seven isolates were selected for plant inoculation and found to have plant growth promoting properties, both in pure culture and when co-cultivated with crop species Brassica juncea (Brassicaceae) or M. sativa. There were no effects on plant Se accumulation. We conclude that Se hyperaccumulators harbor an endophytic bacterial community in their natural seleniferous habitat that is equally diverse to that of comparable non-accumulators. The hyperaccumulator endophytes are characterized by high Se resistance, capacity to produce elemental Se and plant growth promoting properties. PMID:25784919

  19. Genetic diversity across natural populations of three montane plant species from the Western Ghats, India revealed by intersimple sequence repeats.

    PubMed

    Deshpande, A U; Apte, G S; Bahulikar, R A; Lagu, M D; Kulkarni, B G; Suresh, H S; Singh, N P; Rao, M K; Gupta, V S; Pant, A; Ranjekar, P K

    2001-10-01

    We analysed genetic diversity across the natural populations of three montane plant species in the Western Ghats, India; Symplocos laurina, Gaultheria fragrantissima and Eurya nitida using intersimple sequence repeat (ISSR) markers. These markers revealed genetic diversity within the populations of these plants from Nilgiri and also between two populations of S. laurina from Nilgiri and Amboli. Genetic variation within and between populations was analysed using various parameters such as total heterozygosity (HT), heterozygosity within population (HS), diversity between populations (DST), coefficient of population differentiation (GST), genetic distance (D) and gene flow (Nm). Total heterozygosity (HT) was higher for S. laurina (0.238) than for G. fragrantissima (0.172) and E. nitida (0.182). Two populations of S. laurina, separated by > 1000 km, showed a high within-population variation (53.7%) and a low gene flow (Nm = 0.447). upgma phenograms depicted a tendency of accessions to group according to their geographical locations in all the three plant species. The insight gained into the genetic structure of these plant populations might have implications in developing in situ and ex situ conservation strategies. PMID:11742544

  20. Traditional agroecosystems as conservatories and incubators of cultivated plant varietal diversity: the case of fig (Ficus carica L.) in Morocco

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Traditional agroecosystems are known to host both large crop species diversity and high within crop genetic diversity. In a context of global change, this diversity may be needed to feed the world. Are these agroecosystems museums (i.e. large core collections) or cradles of diversity? We investigated this question for a clonally propagated plant, fig (Ficus carica), within its native range, in Morocco, but as far away as possible from supposed centers of domestication. Results Fig varieties were locally numerous. They were found to be mainly highly local and corresponded to clones propagated vegetatively. Nevertheless these clones were often sufficiently old to have accumulated somatic mutations for selected traits (fig skin color) and at neutral loci (microsatellite markers). Further the pattern of spatial genetic structure was similar to the pattern expected in natural population for a mutation/drift/migration model at equilibrium, with homogeneous levels of local genetic diversity throughout Moroccan traditional agroecosystems. Conclusions We conclude that traditional agroecosystems constitue active incubators of varietal diversity even for clonally propagated crop species, and even when varieties correspond to clones that are often old. As only female fig is cultivated, wild fig and cultivated fig probably constitute a single evolutionary unit within these traditional agroecosystems. Core collections, however useful, are museums and hence cannot serve the same functions as traditional agroecosystems. PMID:20167055

  1. Managed livestock grazing is compatible with the maintenance of plant diversity in semidesert grasslands.

    PubMed

    Fensham, R J; Silcock, J L; Firn, J

    2014-04-01

    Even when no baseline data are available, the impacts of 150 years of livestock grazing on natural grasslands can be assessed using a combined approach of grazing manipulation and regional-scale assessment of the flora. Here, we demonstrate the efficacy of this method across 18 sites in the semidesert Mitchell grasslands of northeastern Australia. Fifteen-year-old exclosures (ungrazed and macropod grazed) revealed that the dominant perennial grasses in the genus Astrebla do not respond negatively to grazing disturbance typical of commercial pastoralism. Neutral, positive, intermediate, and negative responses to grazing disturbance were recorded amongst plant species with no single life-form group associated with any response type. Only one exotic species, Cenchrus ciliaris, was recorded at low frequency. The strongest negative response was from a native annual grass, Chionachne hubbardiana, an example of a species that is highly sensitive to grazing disturbance. Herbarium records revealed only scant evidence that species with a negative response to grazing have declined through the period of commercial pastoralism. A regional analysis identified 14 from a total of 433 plant species in the regional flora that may be rare and potentially threatened by grazing disturbance. However, a targeted survey precluded grazing as a cause of decline for seven of these based on low palatability and positive responses to grazing and other disturbance. Our findings suggest that livestock grazing of semidesert grasslands with a short evolutionary history of ungulate grazing has altered plant composition, but has not caused declines in the dominant perennial grasses or in species richness as predicted by the preceding literature. The biggest impact of commercial pastoralism is the spread of woody leguminous trees that can transform grassland to thorny shrubland. The conservation of plant biodiversity is largely compatible with commercial pastoralism provided these woody weeds are controlled, but reserves strategically positioned within water remote areas are necessary to protect grazing-sensitive species. This study demonstrates that a combination of experimental studies and regional surveys can be used to understand anthropogenic impacts on natural ecosystems where reference habitat is not available. PMID:24834736

  2. Initial Activation Assessment for ARIES Compact Stellarator Power Plant

    SciTech Connect

    El-Guebaly, L.; Wilson, P.; Paige, D. [University of Wisconsin, Fusion Technology Institute (United States)] (and others)

    2005-04-15

    As the safety assessment frequently requires knowledge of the activation parameters, we estimated the highest possible activity, decay heat, and waste disposal rating on the time scale after shutdown for the compact stellarator power plant ARIES-CS. We selected two widely different systems employing SiC/SiC composites and low-activation ferritic steel (FS) as structural materials. Our results show that components of both systems qualify as Class C low-level waste (LLW) at the end of a 100 y storage period following the decommissioning of the plant. The SiC blanket, vacuum vessel, and magnet offer very low waste disposal rating to the extent that a Class A LLW seems achievable for these components. On this last point, we discussed the split between the Class A and Class C wastes, emphasizing our motivation to lower the level of ARIES-CS radioactive waste.

  3. Literature Review and Assessment of Plant and Animal Transfer Factors Used in Performance Assessment Modeling

    SciTech Connect

    Robertson, David E.; Cataldo, Dominic A.; Napier, Bruce A.; Krupka, Kenneth M.; Sasser, Lyle B.

    2003-07-20

    A literature review and assessment was conducted by Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) to update information on plant and animal radionuclide transfer factors used in performance-assessment modeling. A group of 15 radionuclides was included in this review and assessment. The review is composed of four main sections, not including the Introduction. Section 2.0 provides a review of the critically important issue of physicochemical speciation and geochemistry of the radionuclides in natural soil-water systems as it relates to the bioavailability of the radionuclides. Section 3.0 provides an updated review of the parameters of importance in the uptake of radionuclides by plants, including root uptake via the soil-groundwater system and foliar uptake due to overhead irrigation. Section 3.0 also provides a compilation of concentration ratios (CRs) for soil-to-plant uptake for the 15 selected radionuclides. Section 4.0 provides an updated review on radionuclide uptake data for animal products related to absorption, homeostatic control, approach to equilibration, chemical and physical form, diet, and age. Compiled transfer coefficients are provided for cow’s milk, sheep’s milk, goat’s milk, beef, goat meat, pork, poultry, and eggs. Section 5.0 discusses the use of transfer coefficients in soil, plant, and animal modeling using regulatory models for evaluating radioactive waste disposal or decommissioned sites. Each section makes specific suggestions for future research in its area.

  4. Power plant system assessment. Final report. SP-100 Program

    SciTech Connect

    Anderson, R.V.; Atkins, D.F.; Bost, D.S.; Berman, B.; Clinger, D.A.; Determan, W.R.; Drucker, G.S.; Glasgow, L.E.; Hartung, J.A.; Harty, R.B.

    1983-10-31

    The purpose of this assessment was to provide system-level insights into 100-kWe-class space reactor electric systems. Using these insights, Rockwell was to select and perform conceptual design studies on a ''most attractive'' system that met the preliminary design goals and requirements of the SP-100 Program. About 4 of the 6 months were used in the selection process. The remaining 2 months were used for the system conceptual design studies. Rockwell completed these studies at the end of FY 1983. This report summarizes the results of the power plant system assessment and describes our choice for the most attractive system - the Rockwell SR-100G System (Space Reactor, 100 kWe, Growth) - a lithium-cooled UN-fueled fast reactor/Brayton turboelectric converter system.

  5. Fungal endophytes in aboveground tissues of desert plants: infrequent in culture, but highly diverse and distinctive symbionts.

    PubMed

    Massimo, Nicholas C; Nandi Devan, M M; Arendt, Kayla R; Wilch, Margaret H; Riddle, Jakob M; Furr, Susan H; Steen, Cole; U'Ren, Jana M; Sandberg, Dustin C; Arnold, A Elizabeth

    2015-07-01

    In hot deserts, plants cope with aridity, high temperatures, and nutrient-poor soils with morphological and biochemical adaptations that encompass intimate microbial symbioses. Whereas the root microbiomes of arid-land plants have received increasing attention, factors influencing assemblages of symbionts in aboveground tissues have not been evaluated for many woody plants that flourish in desert environments. We evaluated the diversity, host affiliations, and distributions of endophytic fungi associated with photosynthetic tissues of desert trees and shrubs, focusing on nonsucculent woody plants in the species-rich Sonoran Desert. To inform our strength of inference, we evaluated the effects of two different nutrient media, incubation temperatures, and collection seasons on the apparent structure of endophyte assemblages. Analysis of >22,000 tissue segments revealed that endophytes were isolated four times more frequently from photosynthetic stems than leaves. Isolation frequency was lower than expected given the latitude of the study region and varied among species a function of sampling site and abiotic factors. However, endophytes were very species-rich and phylogenetically diverse, consistent with less arid sites of a similar latitudinal position. Community composition differed among host species, but not as a function of tissue type, sampling site, sampling month, or exposure. Estimates of abundance, diversity, and composition were not influenced by isolation medium or incubation temperature. Phylogenetic analyses of the most commonly isolated genus (Preussia) revealed multiple evolutionary origins of desert-plant endophytism and little phylogenetic structure with regard to seasonality, tissue preference, or optimal temperatures and nutrients for growth in vitro. Together, these results provide insight into endophytic symbioses in desert-plant communities and can be used to optimize strategies for capturing endophyte biodiversity at regional scales. PMID:25645243

  6. Diversity and Occurrence of Plant-parasitic Nematodes Associated with Golf Course Turfgrasses in North and South Carolina, USA

    PubMed Central

    Zeng, Yongsan; Ye, Weimin; Bruce Martin, S.; Martin, Matt; Tredway, Lane

    2012-01-01

    One hundred and eleven golf courses from 39 counties in the Carolinas were surveyed for plant-parasitic nematodes. Species diversity within habitats was analyzed with five diversity indices including Diversity index (H’), Evenness (J’), Richness (SR), Dominance (?) and Diversity (H2). The results revealed a remarkably high diversity of 24 nematode species belonging to 19 genera and 11 families. Of those, 23 species were found in SC, 19 species in NC, and 18 species were detected in both states. Helicotylenchus dihystera, Mesocriconema xenoplax, Hoplolaimus galeatus, Tylenchorhynchus claytoni, Belonolaimus longicaudatus, Meloidogyne graminis and Paratrichodorus minor were the most prevalent and abundant species in golf course turfgrasses in both states. Twelve species were new records of plant parasitic nematodes in turfgrasses in both NC and SC. The results also revealed effects of different habitats on diversity of nematode species in turfgrass ecosystem. H’ and SR values were higher in SC than in NC. H’, J’ and H2 values were significantly higher in sandy than in clay soil in NC, but no significant differences between sand and clay soil were detected in SC or in pooled data from both states. There were no significant differences for all indices among the management zones (putting green, fairway and tee) in NC. However, in SC and pooled data, H’, SR and H2 were significantly higher in putting greens than in fairways and tees. Significant differences from different grass species (bermudagrass, creeping bentgrass and zoysiagrass) were detected only in H’, which was significantly higher in zoysiagrass than in bentgrass or bermudagrass in NC. In pooled data, H’ was significantly higher in zoysiagrass samples than in creeping bentgrass samples but was not significantly different from bermudagrass samples. PMID:23482422

  7. DNA diversity in sex-linked and autosomal genes of the plant species Silene latifolia and Silene dioica.

    PubMed

    Filatov, D A; Laporte, V; Vitte, C; Charlesworth, D

    2001-08-01

    The relatively recent origin of sex chromosomes in the plant genus Silene provides an opportunity to study the early stages of sex chromosome evolution and, potentially, to test between the different population genetic processes likely to operate in nonrecombining chromosomes such as Y chromosomes. We previously reported much lower nucleotide polymorphism in a Y-linked gene (SlY1) of the plant Silene latifolia than in the homologous X-linked gene (SlX1). Here, we report a more extensive study of nucleotide diversity in these sex-linked genes, including a larger S. latifolia sample and a sample from the closely related species Silene dioica, and we also study the diversity of an autosomal gene, CCLS37.1. We demonstrate that nucleotide diversity in the Y-linked genes of both S. latifolia and S. dioica is very low compared with that of the X-linked gene. However, the autosomal gene also has low DNA polymorphism, which may be due to a selective sweep. We use a single individual of the related hermaphrodite species Silene conica, as an outgroup to show that the low SlY1 diversity is not due to a lower mutation rate than that for the X-linked gene. We also investigate several other possibilities for the low SlY1 diversity, including differential gene flow between the two species for Y-linked, X-linked, and autosomal genes. The frequency spectrum of nucleotide polymorphism on the Y chromosome deviates significantly from that expected under a selective-sweep model. However, we detect population subdivision in both S. latifolia and S. dioica, so it is not simple to test for selective sweeps. We also discuss the possibility that Y-linked diversity is reduced due to highly variable male reproductive success, and we conclude that this explanation is unlikely. PMID:11470835

  8. Comparison of Crenarchaeal Consortia Inhabiting the Rhizosphere of Diverse Terrestrial Plants with Those in Bulk Soil in Native Environments

    PubMed Central

    Sliwinski, Marek K.; Goodman, Robert M.

    2004-01-01

    To explore whether the crenarchaeal consortium found in the rhizosphere is distinct from the assemblage of crenarchaeotes inhabiting bulk soil, PCR-single-stranded-conformation polymorphism (PCR-SSCP) profiles were generated for 76 plant samples collected from native environments. Divergent terrestrial plant groups including bryophytes (mosses), lycopods (club mosses), pteridophytes (ferns), gymnosperms (conifers), and angiosperms (seed plants) were collected for this study. Statistical analysis revealed significant differences between rhizosphere and bulk soil PCR-SSCP profiles (Hotelling paired T2 test, P < 0.0001), suggesting that a distinct crenarchaeal consortium is associated with plants. In general, phylotype richness increased in the rhizosphere compared to the corresponding bulk soil, although the range of this increase was variable. Examples of a major change in rhizosphere (versus bulk soil) PCR-SSCP profiles were detected for all plant groups, suggesting that crenarchaeotes form associations with phylogenetically diverse plants in native environments. In addition, examples of minor to no detectable difference were found for all terrestrial plant groups, suggesting that crenarchaeal associations with plants are mediated by environmental conditions. PMID:15006809

  9. Comparison of crenarchaeal consortia inhabiting the rhizosphere of diverse terrestrial plants with those in bulk soil in native environments.

    PubMed

    Sliwinski, Marek K; Goodman, Robert M

    2004-03-01

    To explore whether the crenarchaeal consortium found in the rhizosphere is distinct from the assemblage of crenarchaeotes inhabiting bulk soil, PCR-single-stranded-conformation polymorphism (PCR-SSCP) profiles were generated for 76 plant samples collected from native environments. Divergent terrestrial plant groups including bryophytes (mosses), lycopods (club mosses), pteridophytes (ferns), gymnosperms (conifers), and angiosperms (seed plants) were collected for this study. Statistical analysis revealed significant differences between rhizosphere and bulk soil PCR-SSCP profiles (Hotelling paired T(2) test, P < 0.0001), suggesting that a distinct crenarchaeal consortium is associated with plants. In general, phylotype richness increased in the rhizosphere compared to the corresponding bulk soil, although the range of this increase was variable. Examples of a major change in rhizosphere (versus bulk soil) PCR-SSCP profiles were detected for all plant groups, suggesting that crenarchaeotes form associations with phylogenetically diverse plants in native environments. In addition, examples of minor to no detectable difference were found for all terrestrial plant groups, suggesting that crenarchaeal associations with plants are mediated by environmental conditions. PMID:15006809

  10. Modeling risk assessment for nuclear processing plants with LAVA

    SciTech Connect

    Smith, S.T.; Tisinger, R.M.

    1988-01-01

    Using the Los Alamos Vulnerability and Risk Assessment (LAVA) methodology, the authors developed a model for assessing risks associated with nuclear processing plants. LAVA is a three-part systematic approach to risk assessment. The first part is the mathematical methodology; the second is the general personal computer-based software engine; and the third is the application itself. The methodology provides a framework for creating applications for the software engine to operate upon; all application-specific information is data. Using LAVA, the authors build knowledge-based expert systems to assess risks in applications systems comprising a subject system and a safeguards system. The subject system model is sets of threats, assets, and undesirable outcomes. The safeguards system model is sets of safeguards functions for protecting the assets from the threats by preventing or ameliorating the undesirable outcomes, sets of safeguards subfunctions whose performance determine whether the function is adequate and complete, and sets of issues, appearing as interactive questionnaires, whose measures (in both monetary and linguistic terms) define both the weaknesses in the safeguards system and the potential costs of an undesirable outcome occurring.

  11. Unmanaged sexual reproduction and the dynamics of genetic diversity of a vegetatively propagated crop plant, cassava (Manihot esculenta Crantz), in a traditional farming system

    Microsoft Academic Search

    M. Elias; L. Penet; P. Vindry; D. McKey; O. Panaud; T. Robert

    2001-01-01

    Occurrence of intervarietal or interspecific natural crosses has been reported for many crop plants in traditional farming systems, underlining the potential importance of this source of genetic exchange for the dynamics of genetic diversity of crop plants. In this study, we use microsatellite loci to investigate the role of volunteer seedlings (plants originating from unmanaged sexual reproduction) in the dynamics

  12. AFLP-based genetic diversity assessment amongst agronomically important natural and some newly synthesized lines of Brassica juncea

    Microsoft Academic Search

    A. Srivastava; V. Gupta; D. Pental; A. K. Pradhan

    2001-01-01

    AFLP markers were employed to assess the genetic diversity amongst 21 established natural and nine synthetic varietes and\\u000a lines of Brassica juncea originating from Asia, Australia, Canada, Eastern Europe and Russia. Six of the synthetics used for diversity studies have\\u000a been developed recently. Twenty one EcoRI\\/MseI-based AFLP primer pairs generated a total of 1251 scorable fragments among the 30 genotypes

  13. Structural and functional diversity of soil bacterial and fungal communities following woody plant encroachment in the southern Great Plains

    SciTech Connect

    Hollister, Emily B [ORNL; Schadt, Christopher Warren [ORNL; Palumbo, Anthony Vito [ORNL; Ansley, R J [Texas A& M University; Boutton, Thomas W [Texas A& M University

    2010-01-01

    In the southern Great Plains (USA), encroachment of grassland ecosystems by Prosopis glandulosa (honey mesquite) is widespread. Mesquite encroachment alters net primary productivity, enhances stores of C and N in plants and soil, and leads to increased levels of soil microbial biomass and activity. While mesquite's impact on the biogeochemistry of the region is well established, it effects on soil microbial diversity and function are unknown. In this study, soils associated with four plant types (C{sub 3} perennial grasses, C{sub 4} midgrasses, C{sub 4} shortgrasses, and mesquite) from a mesquite-encroached mixed grass prairie were surveyed to in an attempt to characterize the structure, diversity, and functional capacity of their soil microbial communities. rRNA gene cloning and sequencing were used in conjunction with the GeoChip functional gene array to evaluate these potential differences. Mesquite soil supported increased bacterial and fungal diversity and harbored a distinct fungal community relative to other plant types. Despite differences in composition and diversity, few significant differences were detected with respect to the potential functional capacity of the soil microbial communities. These results may suggest that a high level of functional redundancy exists within the bacterial portion of the soil communities; however, given the bias of the GeoChip toward bacterial functional genes, potential functional differences among soil fungi could not be addressed. The results of this study illustrate the linkages shared between above- and belowground communities and demonstrate that soil microbial communities, and in particular soil fungi, may be altered by the process of woody plant encroachment.

  14. Genetic Diversity of Frankia Microsymbionts in Root Nodules from Colletia hystrix (Clos.) Plants by Sampling at a Small-Scale

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Mónica Chávez; Margarita Caru ´

    2006-01-01

    Summary  The genetic diversity of microsymbiont Frankia from Colletia hystrix (Clos.) plants growing in a restricted area, were investigated by PCR-restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) technique. DNA from field-collected nodules was amplified by PCR with primers targeting two genomic regions; one included a large portion of the 3? end of the 16S rRNA gene, the intergenic spacer, and the 5? end

  15. Cross-Scale Analysis of the Region Effect on Vascular Plant Species Diversity in Southern and Northern European Mountain Ranges

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Jonathan Lenoir; Jean-Claude Gégout; Antoine Guisan; Pascal Vittoz; Thomas Wohlgemuth; Niklaus E. Zimmermann; Stefan Dullinger; Harald Pauli; Wolfgang Willner; John-Arvid Grytnes; Risto Virtanen; Jens-Christian Svenning; Jon Moen

    2010-01-01

    BackgroundThe divergent glacial histories of southern and northern Europe affect present-day species diversity at coarse-grained scales in these two regions, but do these effects also penetrate to the more fine-grained scales of local communities?Methodology\\/Principal FindingsWe carried out a cross-scale analysis to address this question for vascular plants in two mountain regions, the Alps in southern Europe and the Scandes in

  16. Actinomycetes isolated from medicinal plant rhizosphere soils: diversity and screening of antifungal compounds, indole-3-acetic acid and siderophore production

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Sutthinan Khamna; Akira Yokota; Saisamorn Lumyong

    2009-01-01

    A total of 445 actinomycete isolates were obtained from 16 medicinal plant rhizosphere soils. Morphological and chemotaxonomic\\u000a studies indicated that 89% of the isolates belonged to the genus Streptomyces, 11% were non-Streptomycetes: Actinomadura sp., Microbispora sp., Micromonospora sp., Nocardia sp, Nonomurea sp. and three isolates were unclassified. The highest number and diversity of actinomycetes were isolated from Curcuma mangga rhizosphere

  17. The diversity of chemical substances controlling the nyctinastic leaf-movement in plants.

    PubMed

    Ueda, M; Shigemori, H; Sata, N; Yamamura, S

    2000-01-01

    Leaf-movement in nyctinastic plants has long been believed to be controlled by plant hormones that are common among all nyctinastic plants. We have identified several bioactive substances for nyctinasty, whose bioactivities were highly specific to the original plant, based on the bioassay using the original plant leaf, and have shown that nyctinastic leaf-movement is not regulated by plant hormones. Our present results are in accordance with Umrath et al. physiologically significant opinion. PMID:10656405

  18. Sown species richness and realized diversity can influence functioning of plant communities differently

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rychtecká, Terezie; Lanta, Vojt?ch; Weiterová, Iva; Lepš, Jan

    2014-08-01

    Biodiversity-ecosystem functioning experiments (BEF) typically manipulate sown species richness and composition of experimental communities to study ecosystem functioning as a response to changes in diversity. If sown species richness is taken as a measure of diversity and aboveground biomass production as a measure of community functioning, then this relationship is usually found to be positive. The sown species richness can be considered the equivalent of a local species pool in natural communities. However, in addition to species richness, realized diversity is also an important community diversity component. Realized diversity is affected by environmental filtering and biotic interactions operating within a community. As both sown species richness and the realized diversity in BEF studies (as well as local species pool vs observed realized richness in natural communities) can differ markedly, so can their effects on the community functioning. We tested this assumption using two data sets: data from a short-term pot experiment and data from the long-term Jena biodiversity plot experiment. We considered three possible predictors of community functioning (aboveground biomass production): sown species richness, realized diversity (defined as inverse of Simpson dominance index), and survivor species richness. Sown species richness affected biomass production positively in all cases. Realized diversity as well as survivor species richness had positive effects on biomass in approximately half of cases. When realized diversity or survivor species richness was tested together with sown species richness, their partial effects were none or negative. Our results suggest that we can expect positive diversity-productivity relationship when the local species pool size is the decisive factor determining realized observed diversity; in other cases, the shape of the diversity-functioning relationship may be quite opposite.

  19. [Community diversity of bacteria and arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi in the rhizosphere of eight plants in Liudaogou watershed on the Loess Plateau China].

    PubMed

    Feng, Ye; Tang, Ming; Chen, Hui; Cong, Wei

    2012-01-01

    Terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism (T-RFLP) was used to examine the community diversity of bacteria and arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) and their interrelation in the rhizosphere of 8 plants in the Liudaogou watershed in Shenmu County. The objective was to obtain diversity indices and provide theoretical basis for ecological restoration. Results showed significant variations in the species and abundances of rhizospheric bacteria and AMF associated with 8 plants. Among these, the Shannon diversity index of rhizospheric bacteria was the highest for Robinia pseudoacacia (4.01) and the lowest for Salix babylonica (2.18), whereas the Shannon diversity index of rhizospheric AMF was the highest for Populus simonii (2.07) and the lowest for Hippophae rhamnoides (1.21). Cluster analysis and redundancy analysis indicated a significant difference in associated microbial community structure, while the similarity among community diversity of rhizospheric bacteria and AMF associated with specific plants was also found. There was a significant correlation between diversity indices of bacteria and AMF (P < 0.01). Associated microbial community diversity was influenced primarily by organic matter and total nitrogen content. Our work demonstrated strong impacts of plant species and rhizospheric environment on associated microbial community structure. Due to the high diversity indices of rhizospheric bacteria and AMF, R. pseudoacacia was considered to be a pioneer plant species for vegetation restoration in the Liudaogou watershed. PMID:22452228

  20. Application of molecular fingerprinting for qualitative assessment of small-intestinal bacterial diversity in dogs.

    PubMed

    Suchodolski, Jan S; Ruaux, Craig G; Steiner, Jörg M; Fetz, Kathrin; Williams, David A

    2004-10-01

    The aims of this study were to evaluate the use of molecular fingerprinting for assessment of bacterial diversity in canine duodenal juice and to evaluate the variation in the small intestinal microflora at repeated sampling. Two groups of dogs were used. Duodenal juice was collected from eight dogs euthanized for an unrelated project (group 1). Duodenal juice was also collected endoscopically from six dogs at weekly intervals for a total of 3 weeks (group 2). The variable V6-V8 region of bacterial 16S ribosomal DNA was amplified, and PCR amplicons separated by denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE). The reproducibility of DGGE profiles and variations in bacterial diversity between dogs were evaluated by comparing similarity indices (Dice's coefficient; 100% represents complete identity) of DGGE profiles from group 1 dogs. Weekly variations in the flora of the small intestine were evaluated by comparison of DGGE profiles from different time points within the same individuals in group 2. The mean (+/- standard deviation) similarity of DGGE profiles of duodenal juice between the dogs in group 1 was 38.3 +/- 15.7% (range, 12.5 to 76.65%). There was a significantly higher variation in DGGE profiles between different dogs than between duplicates obtained from the same dog (P < 0.0001). DGGE profiles from samples collected at different time points varied within individuals, possibly due to variation over time or slight variation in sampling location. DGGE profiles indicate that dogs have a highly diverse microflora of the small intestine, with marked differences between individual dogs. PMID:15472330

  1. Sharing of Diverse Mycorrhizal and Root-Endophytic Fungi among Plant Species in an Oak-Dominated Cool–Temperate Forest

    PubMed Central

    Toju, Hirokazu; Yamamoto, Satoshi; Sato, Hirotoshi; Tanabe, Akifumi S.

    2013-01-01

    Most terrestrial plants interact with diverse clades of mycorrhizal and root-endophytic fungi in their roots. Through belowground plant–fungal interactions, dominant plants can benefit by interacting with host-specific mutualistic fungi and proliferate in a community based on positive plant–mutualistic fungal feedback. On the other hand, subordinate plant species may persist in the community by sharing other sets (functional groups) of fungal symbionts with each other. Therefore, revealing how diverse clades of root-associated fungi are differentially hosted by dominant and subordinate plant species is essential for understanding plant community structure and dynamics. Based on 454-pyrosequencing, we determined the community composition of root-associated fungi on 36 co-occurring plant species in an oak-dominated forest in northern Japan and statistically evaluated the host preference phenotypes of diverse mycorrhizal and root-endophytic fungi. An analysis of 278 fungal taxa indicated that an ectomycorrhizal basidiomycete fungus in the genus Lactarius and a possibly endophytic ascomycete fungus in the order Helotiales significantly favored the dominant oak (Quercus) species. In contrast, arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi were generally shared among subordinate plant species. Although fungi with host preferences contributed to the compartmentalization of belowground plant–fungal associations, diverse clades of ectomycorrhizal fungi and possible root endophytes were associated not only with the dominant Quercus but also with the remaining plant species. Our findings suggest that dominant-ectomycorrhizal and subordinate plant species can host different subsets of root-associated fungi, and diverse clades of generalist fungi can counterbalance the compartmentalization of plant–fungal associations. Such insights into the overall structure of belowground plant–fungal associations will help us understand the mechanisms that facilitate the coexistence of plant species in natural communities. PMID:24250752

  2. Covering chemical diversity of genetically-modified tomatoes using metabolomics for objective substantial equivalence assessment.

    PubMed

    Kusano, Miyako; Redestig, Henning; Hirai, Tadayoshi; Oikawa, Akira; Matsuda, Fumio; Fukushima, Atsushi; Arita, Masanori; Watanabe, Shin; Yano, Megumu; Hiwasa-Tanase, Kyoko; Ezura, Hiroshi; Saito, Kazuki

    2011-01-01

    As metabolomics can provide a biochemical snapshot of an organism's phenotype it is a promising approach for charting the unintended effects of genetic modification. A critical obstacle for this application is the inherently limited metabolomic coverage of any single analytical platform. We propose using multiple analytical platforms for the direct acquisition of an interpretable data set of estimable chemical diversity. As an example, we report an application of our multi-platform approach that assesses the substantial equivalence of tomatoes over-expressing the taste-modifying protein miraculin. In combination, the chosen platforms detected compounds that represent 86% of the estimated chemical diversity of the metabolites listed in the LycoCyc database. Following a proof-of-safety approach, we show that % had an acceptable range of variation while simultaneously indicating a reproducible transformation-related metabolic signature. We conclude that multi-platform metabolomics is an approach that is both sensitive and robust and that it constitutes a good starting point for characterizing genetically modified organisms. PMID:21359231

  3. Covering Chemical Diversity of Genetically-Modified Tomatoes Using Metabolomics for Objective Substantial Equivalence Assessment

    PubMed Central

    Hirai, Tadayoshi; Oikawa, Akira; Matsuda, Fumio; Fukushima, Atsushi; Arita, Masanori; Watanabe, Shin; Yano, Megumu; Hiwasa-Tanase, Kyoko; Ezura, Hiroshi; Saito, Kazuki

    2011-01-01

    As metabolomics can provide a biochemical snapshot of an organism's phenotype it is a promising approach for charting the unintended effects of genetic modification. A critical obstacle for this application is the inherently limited metabolomic coverage of any single analytical platform. We propose using multiple analytical platforms for the direct acquisition of an interpretable data set of estimable chemical diversity. As an example, we report an application of our multi-platform approach that assesses the substantial equivalence of tomatoes over-expressing the taste-modifying protein miraculin. In combination, the chosen platforms detected compounds that represent 86% of the estimated chemical diversity of the metabolites listed in the LycoCyc database. Following a proof-of-safety approach, we show that % had an acceptable range of variation while simultaneously indicating a reproducible transformation-related metabolic signature. We conclude that multi-platform metabolomics is an approach that is both sensitive and robust and that it constitutes a good starting point for characterizing genetically modified organisms. PMID:21359231

  4. Benthic macroinvertebrates diversity and water quality assessment at Sungai Congkak recreational area, Hulu Langat, Selangor

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mustaqim-Alias, M.; Ahmad, A. K.

    2013-11-01

    A study on benthic macroinvertebrates diversity and water quality assessment was conducted at Sungai Congkak recreational area in Hulu Langat, Selangor. Sums of eight sampling stations were selected with a distance of 100-200 m interval between each station. Benthic macroinvertebrates was sampled using a Surber net, while water sampling and analysis were undertaken according to HACH standard methods. A total of 3754 individuals from 40 families of benthic macroinvertebrates were recorded at this river. Ecological indices namely Shannon diversity index (2.49), Pielou evenness index (0.77) and Margalef richness index (4.06) demonstrate that Sungai Congkak is at good condition and benthic macroinvertebrates has homogeneous distribution along the sampling sites. Elmidae, Hydrophilidae, Baetidae and Perlidae were most dominant families present in that area and adapted progressively with excellent water quality (> 300 individuals). As regards to Malaysian's Water Quality Index (WQI), the study area at Sungai Congkak is classified in class I which has good water quality conditions. The Pearson correlation test indicates that ecological indices have strong correlation toward WQI at all sampling stations. As a conclusion, the benthic macroinvertebrates and WQI data demonstrated that Sungai Congkak is clean and suitable as recreational stream based on this study.

  5. Contribution of enrichments and resampling for sulfate reducing bacteria diversity assessment by high-throughput cultivation.

    PubMed

    Colin, Yannick; Goñi-Urriza, Marisol; Caumette, Pierre; Guyoneaud, Rémy

    2015-03-01

    The development of new high-throughput cultivation methods aims to increase the isolation efficiency as compared to standard techniques that often require enrichment procedures to compensate the low microbial recovery. In the current study, estuarine sulfate-reducing bacteria were isolated using an anaerobic isolation procedure in 384-well microplates. Ninety-nine strains were recovered from initial sediments. Isolates were identified according to their partial 16S rRNA sequences and clustered into 13 phylotypes. Besides, the increase in species richness obtained through enrichments or resampling was investigated. Forty-four enrichment procedures were conducted and shifts in sulfate-reducing bacterial communities were investigated through dsrAB gene fingerprinting. Despite efforts in conducting numerous enrichment conditions only few of them were statistically different from initial sample. The cultural diversity obtained from 3 of the most divergent enrichments, as well as from resampled sediments equally contributed to raise the sulfate-reducing diversity up to 22 phylotypes. Enrichments (selection of metabolism) or resampling (transient populations and micro-heterogeneity) may still be helpful to assess new microbial phylotypes. Nevertheless, all the newly cultivated strains were all representatives of minor Operational Taxonomic Units and could eventually be recovered by maintaining high-throughput isolation effort from the initial sediments. PMID:25578508

  6. AM fungal diversity and modularity reveal different trends in the mycorrhizal association with generalist and specialist plant species.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Torrecillas, Emma; del Mar Alguacil, Mª; Roldán, Antonio; Díaz, Gisela; Montesinos-Navarro, Alicia; Torres, Mª Pilar

    2013-04-01

    The plant communities present on gypsum soils include one of the most remarkable groups of edaphic "specialists", which coexist with edaphic "generalists". This study hypothesized that plant-arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi(AMF) associations can be related with specific functional plant strategies in gypsum soils.We analyzed, using network analysis, a plant-AMF mutualistic system in a gypsum environment, to characterize the plant-AMF interaction patterns according to their modularity or the tendency of species to be grouped into modules.Taking into account the total area studied (gypsum soil and marly-limestone soil), our results show that the factors determining the AM fungal community's distribution were soil type and plant species, with gypsovags harboring a different AM fungal community in gypsum and non-gypsum soils. But, there were no differences in the community diversity between specialist and generalist plants. Modularity analysis revealed that, when only gypsum soils are considered, there were some AM fungal groups with a tendency to interact differently with gypsophytes(specialists) and gypsovags (generalists).

  7. The NCRPIS - Providing Diverse Plant Genetic Resources for Worldwide Research and Development

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The North Central Regional Plant Introduction Station (NCRPIS) is an active plant genebank of the U.S. National Plant Germplasm System (NPGS). Dedicated to conserving and providing plant genetic resources and valuable information to researchers worldwide, the NPGS is a network of federal and state ...

  8. Plant species influence microbial diversity and carbon allocation in the rhizosphere

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Natalia Ladygina; Katarina Hedlund

    2010-01-01

    Plant species effects on microbial communities are attributed to changes in microbial community composition and biomass, and may depend on plant species specific differences in the quality of resources (carbon) inputs. We examined the idea that plant–soil feedbacks can be explained by a chance effect, which is the probability of a highly productive or keystone plant species is present in

  9. PLB 300 -DIVERSITY OF PLANTS, ALGAE, AND FUNGI Lecturer: Dr. Sedonia Sipes, Associate Professor

    E-print Network

    Nickrent, Daniel L.

    @plant.siu.edu; Ph: 453-3213 Laboratory Instructor: Mr. George Manning, Doctoral Student Office: LSII 419 Office. Additional Resources: The Plant Biology Greenhouses (southeast of LSII) are open to all students during we begin the vascular plant section. Students are encouraged to browse the plant collection

  10. Predicting plant species diversity in response to disturbance magnitude in grassland remnants of central Alberta

    Microsoft Academic Search

    K. Vujnovic; R. W. Wein; M. R. T. Dale

    2002-01-01

    The Intermediate Disturbance Hypothesis states that the greatest species diversity occurs at intermediate lev - els of disturbance because species coexistence is maintained at a nonequilibrium state and no strong competitor can dominate completely. On the other hand, diversity of exotic species is expected to increase with the disturbance magni - tude. These patterns were tested for in this study.

  11. Genotypic and phenotypic diversity in populations of plant-probiotic Pseudomonas spp. colonizing roots

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Christine Picard; Marco Bosco

    2008-01-01

    Several soil microorganisms colonizing roots are known to naturally promote the health of plants by controlling a range of\\u000a plant pathogens, including bacteria, fungi, and nematodes. The use of theses antagonistic microorganisms, recently named plant-probiotics,\\u000a to control plant-pathogenic fungi is receiving increasing attention, as they may represent a sustainable alternative to chemical\\u000a pesticides. Many years of research on plant-probiotic microorganisms

  12. Assessing the costs of solar power plants for the Island of Roatàn

    E-print Network

    Huwe, Ethan (Ethan L.)

    2011-01-01

    This is an analysis assessing the installation costs of different solar power plant technologies and the current commercial availability for installation on the Island or Roatàn. Commercial large-scale power plants have ...

  13. Prevalence, distribution, and diversity of Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus, and Salmonella in kiwifruit orchards and processing plants.

    PubMed

    Feng, Yuqing; Li, Guanghui; Lv, Xiaoying; Xu, Yunfeng; Wu, Qian; Shi, Chao; Li, Qiong; Yang, Baowei; Wang, Xin; Xi, Meili; Xia, Xiaodong

    2014-10-01

    Abstract The aim of the study was to investigate the prevalence, distribution, and diversity of three foodborne bacteria in kiwifruit orchards and processing plants. Fourteen kiwifruit orchards and two processing plants in Shaanxi province were visited for sampling in 2012. Fruit samples and environmental samples in orchards and plants were taken for isolation of Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus, and Salmonella. All isolates were characterized by antimicrobial susceptibility testing and detection of virulence genes. Selected isolates were further examined by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) analysis. In total, 160 E. coli isolates and 14 S. aureus isolates were recovered from 407 samples from orchards and plants, while no Salmonella was recovered. E. coli isolates displayed resistance most frequently to streptomycin (65.6%), and S. aureus isolates displayed resistance most frequently to erythromycin (21.4%). Three E. coli isolates (1.9%) were positive for stx2 and two S. aureus isolates (14.3%) were positive for both seb and seh. Seventy-seven E. coli isolates and 14 S. aureus isolates were analyzed by PFGE. PFGE results showed that both E. coli and S. aureus isolates were diverse, and blades for slicing during the processing could be an important contamination source. This study could provide useful information for kiwifruit growers and industry to establish proper management practices that help minimize the chance of microbial contamination from farm to table. PMID:25054781

  14. BIOL 409/L/492J. Non-Flowering Plants. The diversity of mosses, ferns, conifers, etc., their phylogeny, life cycles, ecological niches, biogeography, identification, and

    E-print Network

    Wilson, Paul

    BIOL 409/L/492J. Non-Flowering Plants. The diversity of mosses, ferns, conifers, etc. Greenhouse ferns, Lycopods, Equisetum, Psilotum. 20 Feb ~NO CLASS COMPENSATING FOR BIG TRIP~ Hint, this would-162. Lecture on fern diversity. Greenhouse work. A good day to show me how your collection is progressing. 13

  15. Assessing pollutions of soil and plant by municipal waste dump

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Changli; Zhang, Yun; Zhang, Feng'e.; Zhang, Sheng; Yin, Miying; Ye, Hao; Hou, Hongbing; Dong, Hua; Zhang, Ming; Jiang, Jianmei; Pei, Lixin

    2007-04-01

    Research is few in the literature regarding the investigation and assessment of pollutions of soil and plant by municipal waste dumps. Based upon previous work in seven waste dumping sites (nonsanitary landfills) in Beijing, Shanghai and Shijiazhuang, this study expounds the investigation and assessment method and report major pollutants. Using relative background values, this study assesses soil pollution degree in the seven dumping sites. Preliminary conclusions are: (1) pollution degrees are moderate or heavy; (2) pollution distance by domestic waste that is dumped on a plane ground is 85 m; (3) the horizontal transport distance of pollutants might be up to 120 m if waste leachates are directly connected with water in saturated soils; (4) vertical transport depth is about 3 m in unsaturated silty clayey soils. Furthermore, using relative background values and hygiene standards of food and vegetable this study assesses the pollutions of different parts of reed, sorghum, watermelon and sweet-melon. It is found: (1) in comparison with the relative background values in a large distance to the waste dumping sites, domestic wastes have polluted the roots and stems of reed and sorghum, whereas fine coal ash has polluted the leaves, rattans and fruits of watermelon and sweet-melon; (2) domestic wastes and fine coal ash have heavily polluted the edible parts of sorghum, water melon and sweet-melon. As, Hg, Pb and F have far exceeded standard values, e.g., Hg has exceeded the standard value by up to 650 1,700 times and Cd by 120 275 times, and the comprehensive pollution index is up to 192.9 369.7; (3) the polluted sorghum, watermelon and sweet-melon are inedible.

  16. Preliminary assessment of Fort Hood solar cogeneration plant performance

    SciTech Connect

    Ator, J.

    1981-04-01

    An analysis has been performed to enable a preliminary assessment of the performance that can be expected of a solar thermal cogeneration system designed to serve a selected group of buildings at Fort Hood, Texas. A central receiver system utilizing a molten salts mixture as the receiver coolant, heat transfer fluid, and storage medium is assumed. The system is to supply a large share of the space heating, air conditioning, domestic hot water, and electricity needs of a 20-building Troop Housing Complex. Principal energy loads are graphed and tabulated, and the principal electric parasitic loads are tabulated and the methodology by which they are estimated is reviewed. The plant model and the performance calculations are discussed. Annual energy displacement results are given. (LEW)

  17. Partitioning evapotranspiration across gradients of woody plant cover: Assessment of a stable isotope technique

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Lixin; Caylor, Kelly K.; Villegas, Juan Camilo; Barron-Gafford, Greg A.; Breshears, David D.; Huxman, Travis E.

    2010-05-01

    In water-limited ecosystems, partitioning ecosystem-scale evapotranspiration fluxes between plant transpiration and soil/canopy evaporation remains a theoretical and technical challenge. We used the Biosphere 2 glasshouse to assess partitioning of evapotranspiration across an experimentally manipulated gradient of woody plant cover using continuous measurements of near-surface variations in the stable isotopic composition of water vapor (?2H). Our technique employs a newly-developed laser-based isotope analyzer and the Keeling plot approach for surface flux partitioning. The applicability of the technique was verified by comparison to separate, simultaneous lysimeter and sap flow estimates of ET partitioning. The results showed an expected increase in fractional contribution of transpiration to evapotranspiration as woody cover increased—from T/ET = 0.61 at 25% woody cover to T/ET = 0.83 at 100% cover. Further development of this technique may enable field characterization of evapotranspiration partitioning across diverse woody cover gradients, a central issue in addressing dryland ecohydrological responses to land use and climate change.

  18. Protocol: a rapid and economical procedure for purification of plasmid or plant DNA with diverse applications in plant biology

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Jian-Feng Li; Li Li; Jen Sheen

    2010-01-01

    Research in plant molecular biology involves DNA purification on a daily basis. Although different commercial kits enable convenient extraction of high-quality DNA from E. coli cells, PCR and agarose gel samples as well as plant tissues, each kit is designed for a particular type of DNA extraction work, and the cost of purchasing these kits over a long run can

  19. The effects of plant diversity and insect herbivory on performance of individual plant species in experimental grassland

    Microsoft Academic Search

    CHRISTOPH SCHERBER; ALEXANDRU MILCU; STEPHAN PARTSCH; STEFAN SCHEU; WOLFGANG W. WEISSER

    2006-01-01

    1 There is increasing evidence that components of biodiversity affect processes at the ecosystem level; yet, the effects of biodiversity on the performance of individual organisms or particular trophic interactions are largely unexplored. 2 We transplanted 10 individuals of Rumex acetosa into 82 experimental grassland plots differing in plant species and functional group richness. Half of the plants received an

  20. Prevalence of single nucleotide polymorphism among 27 diverse alfalfa genotypes as assessed by transcriptome sequencing

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Alfalfa, a perennial, outcrossing species, is a widely planted forage legume producing highly nutritious biomass. Currently, improvement of cultivated alfalfa mainly relies on recurrent phenotypic selection. Marker assisted breeding strategies can enhance alfalfa improvement efforts, particularly if many genome-wide markers are available. Transcriptome sequencing enables efficient high-throughput discovery of single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers for a complex polyploid species. Result The transcriptomes of 27 alfalfa genotypes, including elite breeding genotypes, parents of mapping populations, and unimproved wild genotypes, were sequenced using an Illumina Genome Analyzer IIx. De novo assembly of quality-filtered 72-bp reads generated 25,183 contigs with a total length of 26.8 Mbp and an average length of 1,065 bp, with an average read depth of 55.9-fold for each genotype. Overall, 21,954 (87.2%) of the 25,183 contigs represented 14,878 unique protein accessions. Gene ontology (GO) analysis suggested that a broad diversity of genes was represented in the resulting sequences. The realignment of individual reads to the contigs enabled the detection of 872,384 SNPs and 31,760 InDels. High resolution melting (HRM) analysis was used to validate 91% of 192 putative SNPs identified by sequencing. Both allelic variants at about 95% of SNP sites identified among five wild, unimproved genotypes are still present in cultivated alfalfa, and all four US breeding programs also contain a high proportion of these SNPs. Thus, little evidence exists among this dataset for loss of significant DNA sequence diversity from either domestication or breeding of alfalfa. Structure analysis indicated that individuals from the subspecies falcata, the diploid subspecies caerulea, and the tetraploid subspecies sativa (cultivated tetraploid alfalfa) were clearly separated. Conclusion We used transcriptome sequencing to discover large numbers of SNPs segregating in elite breeding populations of alfalfa. Little loss of SNP diversity was evident between unimproved and elite alfalfa germplasm. The EST and SNP markers generated from this study are publicly available at the Legume Information System ( http://medsa.comparative-legumes.org/) and can contribute to future alfalfa research and breeding applications. PMID:23107476

  1. A keystone predator controls bacterial diversity in the pitcher-plant (Sarracenia purpurea) microecosystem

    E-print Network

    Pringle, Anne

    of the keystone predator in this food web, larvae of the pitcher-plant mosquito Wyeomyia smithii. Results were the larvae of three dipterans and one mite, which are obligatorily associated with pitcher plants and occur

  2. Development of diversity array technology (DArT) markers for assessment of population structure and diversity in Aegilops tauschii

    PubMed Central

    Sohail, Quahir; Shehzad, Tariq; Kilian, Andrezj; Eltayeb, Amin Elsadig; Tanaka, Hiroyuki; Tsujimoto, Hisashi

    2012-01-01

    Aegilops tauschii Coss. is the D-genome donor to hexaploid bread wheat (Triticum aestivum) and is the most promising wild species as a genetic resource for wheat breeding. To study the population structure and diversity of 81 Ae. tauschii accessions collected from various regions of its geographical distribution, the genomic representation of these lines were used to develop a diversity array technology (DArT) marker array. This Ae. tauschii array and a previously developed DArT wheat array were used to scan the genomes of the 81 accessions. Out of 7500 markers (5500 wheat and 2000 Ae. tauschii), 4449 were polymorphic (3776 wheat and 673 Ae. tauschii). Phylogenetic and population structure studies revealed that the accessions could be divided into three groups. The two Ae. tauschii subspecies could also be separately clustered, suggesting that the current taxonomy might be valid. DArT markers are effective to detect very small polymorphisms. The information obtained about Ae. tauschii in the current study could be useful for wheat breeding. In addition, the new DArT array from this Ae. tauschii population is expected to be an effective tool for hexaploid wheat studies. PMID:23136512

  3. RESOURCE-BASED NICHES PROVIDE A BASIS FOR PLANT SPECIES DIVERSITY AND DOMINANCE IN ARCTIC TUNDRA

    EPA Science Inventory

    Ecologists have long been intrigued by the ways co-occurring species divide limiting resources, and have proposed that such resource partitioning, or niche differentiation, promotes species diversity by reducing competition. Although resource partitioning is an important determi...

  4. Impacts of recent cultivation on genetic diversity pattern of a medicinal plant, Scutellaria baicalensis (Lamiaceae)

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Qing-Jun Yuan; Zhi-Yong Zhang; Juan Hu; Lan-Ping Guo; Ai-Juan Shao; Lu-Qi Huang

    2010-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Cultivation of medicinal plants is not only a means for meeting current and future demands for large volume production of plant-based drug and herbal remedies, but also a means of relieving harvest pressure on wild populations. Scutellaria baicalensis Georgi (Huang-qin or Chinese skullcap) is a very important medicinal plant in China. Over the past several decades, wild resource of

  5. Soil arthropods beneficially rather than detrimentally impact plant performance in experimental grassland systems of different diversity

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Nico Eisenhauer; Alexander C. W. Sabais; Felix Schonert; Stefan Scheu

    2010-01-01

    Impacts of belowground insecticide application on plant performance and changes in plant community structure almost uniformly have been ascribed to reduced belowground herbivory, although recent studies reported distinct side effects on detritivore soil animals, particularly on Collembola. Consequently, it remains controversial if the resulting soil feedbacks on plants are due to alterations in arthropod herbivory or to changes in the

  6. Soil fungal abundance and diversity: another victim of the invasive plant Centaurea maculosa

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Interactions between plants and soil microbes are important determinants of both above- and belowground community composition, and ultimately ecosystem function. As exotic plants continue to invade and modify native plant communities, there has been increasing interest in determining the influence o...

  7. Diversity of Beetle Genes Encoding Novel Plant Cell Wall Degrading Enzymes

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Yannick Pauchet; Paul Wilkinson; Ritika Chauhan; Richard H. ffrench-Constant

    2010-01-01

    Plant cell walls are a heterogeneous mixture of polysaccharides and proteins that require a range of different enzymes to degrade them. Plant cell walls are also the primary source of cellulose, the most abundant and useful biopolymer on the planet. Plant cell wall degrading enzymes (PCWDEs) are therefore important in a wide range of biotechnological processes from the production of

  8. Agricultural and biofuel implications of a species diversity experiment with native perennial grassland plants

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Lee R. DeHaan; Sanford Weisberg; David Tilman; Dario Fornara

    2010-01-01

    Two primary approaches to perennial biofuel crop production studied so far are fertilized grass monocultures and low-input high-diversity grasslands. While high-yielding perennial grass varieties are being developed in fertilized monocultures, breeding for yield in low-input high-diversity systems would be difficult. Before initiating breeding for low-input systems, it is therefore important to know the minimum number of functional groups and species

  9. Wherefore Art Thou, Multiple Intelligences? Alternative Assessments for Identifying Talent in Ethnically Diverse and Low Income Students.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Plucker, Jonathan A.; And Others

    1996-01-01

    This study evaluated the reliability and validity of a battery of instruments based on Multiple Intelligences theory, including teacher checklists and performance-based assessment activities developed for the identification of talent in culturally diverse and/or low-income kindergarten and first-grade students. Acceptable reliability but…

  10. Assessment of Genetic Diversity and Population Structure of Sweet Sorghum Accessions in the U.S. Germplasm Collection

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Sweet sorghum can potentially become a versatile feedstock for large-scale bioenergy production. Approximately 3,000 accessions are maintained in the U.S. sweet sorghum germplasm at the USDA-ARS-PGRCU, Griffin, Georgia. To assess the genetic diversity and population structure of this collection, we ...

  11. Composition and Diversity of Soil Microbial Communities Following Vegetation Change from Grassland to Woodland: An Assessment Using Molecular Methods

    E-print Network

    Composition and Diversity of Soil Microbial Communities Following Vegetation Change from Grassland that subtropical thorn woodlands dominated by N-fixing tree legumes have largely replaced grasslands, resulting the composition and function of soil microbial communities. OBJECTIVE To assess the impact of grassland

  12. Assessing the Geometric Diversity of Cytochrome P450 Ligand Conformers by Hierarchical Clustering with a Stop Criterion

    E-print Network

    Paris-Sud XI, Université de

    ARTICLES Assessing the Geometric Diversity of Cytochrome P450 Ligand Conformers by Hierarchical applied on a database containing 70 ligands of the cytochrome CYP 3A4, showing that the structural is valid for all small molecules. 1. INTRODUCTION The cytochrome CYP 3A4 is a member of the P450

  13. Sequence-Related Amplified Polymorphism (SRAP) markers for assessing interrelationships and genetic diversity among members of the Saccharum complex

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Characterization of wild germplasm provides essential information on genetic diversity that breeders utilize for crop improvement. The potential of the sequence-related amplified polymorphism (SRAP) technique, which preferentially amplifies gene-rich regions, was evaluated to assess the genetic rela...

  14. Using DNA barcodes for assessing diversity in the family Hybotidae (Diptera, Empidoidea)

    PubMed Central

    Nagy, Zoltán T.; Sonet, Gontran; Mortelmans, Jonas; Vandewynkel, Camille; Grootaert, Patrick

    2013-01-01

    Abstract Empidoidea is one of the largest extant lineages of flies, but phylogenetic relationships among species of this group are poorly investigated and global diversity remains scarcely assessed. In this context, one of the most enigmatic empidoid families is Hybotidae. Within the framework of a pilot study, we barcoded 339 specimens of Old World hybotids belonging to 164 species and 22 genera (plus two Empis as outgroups) and attempted to evaluate whether patterns of intra- and interspecific divergences match the current taxonomy. We used a large sampling of diverse Hybotidae. The material came from the Palaearctic (Belgium, France, Portugal and Russian Caucasus), the Afrotropic (Democratic Republic of the Congo) and the Oriental realms (Singapore and Thailand). Thereby, we optimized lab protocols for barcoding hybotids. Although DNA barcodes generally well distinguished recognized taxa, the study also revealed a number of unexpected phenomena: e.g., undescribed taxa found within morphologically very similar or identical specimens, especially when geographic distance was large; some morphologically distinct species showed no genetic divergence; or different pattern of intraspecific divergence between populations or closely related species. Using COI sequences and simple Neighbour-Joining tree reconstructions, the monophyly of many species- and genus-level taxa was well supported, but more inclusive taxonomical levels did not receive significant bootstrap support. We conclude that in hybotids DNA barcoding might be well used to identify species, when two main constraints are considered. First, incomplete barcoding libraries hinder efficient (correct) identification. Therefore, extra efforts are needed to increase the representation of hybotids in these databases. Second, the spatial scale of sampling has to be taken into account, and especially for widespread species or species complexes with unclear taxonomy, an integrative approach has to be used to clarify species boundaries and identities. PMID:24453562

  15. Genetic diversity of Labyrinthula terrestris, a newly emergent plant pathogen, and the discovery of new Labyrinthulid organisms.

    PubMed

    Douhan, Greg W; Olsen, Mary W; Herrell, Amanda; Winder, Charles; Wong, Frank; Entwistle, Kate

    2009-10-01

    Labyrinthuloid organisms are thought almost exclusively to be only associated with marine environments. However in 1995, a disease of turfgrass suddenly appeared that was eventually determined to be caused by a new Labyrinthula species (Labyrinthula terrestris). The disease is primarily thought to be caused by the use of elevated salinity irrigation water, making it a unique example of an emergent plant disease potentially induced by human activity. Our objective was to examine diversity of L. terrestris from broadly distributed isolates using AFLP, sequence analysis of two rDNA loci (SSU & LSU-ITS), and pathogenicity tests since previous research on a limited number of isolates found no variability based in ITS and SSU. In contrast to previous work, 18 unique genotypes were found out of a total of 29 analyzed based on AFLP. Sequence variability was only found in a single pathogenic isolate (Laby 31) that was isolated from the United Kingdom. The divergence based on AFLP and sequence analysis suggests that this isolate is a distinct species but closely related to the other L. terrestris isolates examined. Two putatively new nonpathogenic Labyrinthulid species were also found (Laby 13 & 32). Our results suggest that these organisms may be widely distributed in terrestrial environments based on the diversity found in this study and may have long been associated with terrestrial plants. Our results also suggest that more Labyrinthulid organisms may potentially emerge as new plant pathogens in the future if salinification of agricultural systems continues to increases worldwide. PMID:19682576

  16. Effects of cement flue dust from a cement factory on stress parameters and diversity of aquatic plants.

    PubMed

    Erdal, Serkan; Demirtas, Ayten

    2010-07-01

    Cement kiln dusts, made of a complex mixture of elements, include high levels of heavy metals such as fluoride, magnesium, lead, cadmium, nickel, zinc, copper, beryllium and some toxic compounds. Because of the toxic element compositions and radioactive isotope properties of cement kiln dusts, not only terrestrial but also aquatic ecosystems are subjected to greater stress. In the present paper, we investigated the effects of pollution caused by Askale-Erzurum cement factory (CF) on the stress parameters and diversity of aquatic plants. For this purpose, aquatic plant species were collected from the outer zone of the CF. Only three (Lemna minor, Ceratophyllum submersum and Potamogeton natans) of these species were able to be determined in the CF zone. Antioxidant enzyme activities of the collected aquatic plants were measured and compared to their controls. Superoxide dismutase (SOD) activity of P. natans in the CF zone was significantly high compared to their respective control, while it was low in L. minor and C. submersum compared to their controls. Similarly, peroxidase (POX) activity of P. natans was high, while those of L. minor and C. submersum were low compared to their respective controls. On the other side, while catalase (CAT) activities of L. minor and C. submersum were low, that of P. natans did not show an important change compared to their respective controls. Furthermore, we found that hydrogen peroxide (H(2)O(2)) and malondialdehyde (MDA) levels of all the studied plants were also very high compared to their controls. According to these results, it is clear that pollution caused by the CF reduced diversity and number of aquatic plant species. Besides, the obtained data revealed that P. natans have a more resistant defense system than other species. PMID:20430819

  17. Plant Diversity Changes during the Postglacial in East Asia: Insights from Forest Refugia on Halla Volcano, Jeju Island

    PubMed Central

    Dolezal, Jiri; Altman, Jan; Kopecky, Martin; Cerny, Tomas; Janecek, Stepan; Bartos, Michael; Petrik, Petr; Srutek, Miroslav; Leps, Jan; Song, Jong-Suk

    2012-01-01

    Understanding how past climate changes affected biodiversity is a key issue in contemporary ecology and conservation biology. These diversity changes are, however, difficult to reconstruct from paleoecological sources alone, because macrofossil and pollen records do not provide complete information about species assemblages. Ecologists therefore use information from modern analogues of past communities in order to get a better understanding of past diversity changes. Here we compare plant diversity, species traits and environment between late-glacial Abies, early-Holocene Quercus, and mid-Holocene warm-temperate Carpinus forest refugia on Jeju Island, Korea in order to provide insights into postglacial changes associated with their replacement. Based on detailed study of relict communities, we propose that the late-glacial open-canopy conifer forests in southern part of Korean Peninsula were rich in vascular plants, in particular of heliophilous herbs, whose dramatic decline was caused by the early Holocene invasion of dwarf bamboo into the understory of Quercus forests, followed by mid-Holocene expansion of strongly shading trees such as maple and hornbeam. This diversity loss was partly compensated in the Carpinus forests by an increase in shade-tolerant evergreen trees, shrubs and lianas. However, the pool of these species is much smaller than that of light-demanding herbs, and hence the total species richness is lower, both locally and in the whole area of the Carpinus and Quercus forests. The strongly shading tree species dominating in the hornbeam forests have higher leaf tissue N and P concentrations and smaller leaf dry matter content, which enhances litter decomposition and nutrient cycling and in turn favored the selection of highly competitive species in the shrub layer. This further reduced available light and caused almost complete disappearance of understory herbs, including dwarf bamboo. PMID:22438890

  18. Seasonal and plant-dependent variations in diversity, abundance and stress tolerance of epiphytic yeasts in desert habitats.

    PubMed

    Abu-Ghosh, Said; Droby, Samir; Korine, Carmi

    2014-08-01

    We studied the epiphytic yeast species of the plants of the Negev Desert and the Dead Sea region, Israel, which are considered one of the most extreme hyper-arid lands in the world. For this purpose, we developed isolation protocols; we performed morphological, cultural and molecular identification tests and compared yeast diversity between the locations and the plants. The composition of the yeast populations present in the study's plants underwent seasonal fluctuations, whereas differences in community compositions were significant within sites. The maximum number of species of yeast occurred in autumn and Cryptococcus spp. were predominant year round. The isolated yeast strains showed an unusual tolerance to extreme growth conditions, such as high temperatures (up to 72% viability at 50°C), lethal hydrogen peroxide and NaCl concentrations. These results suggest that epiphytic yeasts inhabit the plants of the Dead Sea region and the Negev Desert have a community structure that is unique to the plant species and have a high tolerance to the harsh conditions that enables them to adapt to an arid ecosystem. PMID:24992536

  19. The diversity and anti-microbial activity of endophytic actinomycetes isolated from medicinal plants in Panxi plateau, China.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Ke; Penttinen, Petri; Guan, Tongwei; Xiao, Jing; Chen, Qiang; Xu, Jun; Lindström, Kristina; Zhang, Lili; Zhang, Xiaoping; Strobel, Gary A

    2011-01-01

    Traditional Chinese medicinal plants are sources of biologically active compounds, providing raw material for pharmaceutical, cosmetic and fragrance industries. The endophytes of medicinal plants participate in biochemical pathways and produce analogous or novel bioactive compounds. Panxi plateau in South-west Sichuan in China with its unique geographical and climatological characteristics is a habitat of a great variety of medicinal plants. In this study, 560 endophytic actinomycetes were isolated from 26 medicinal plant species in Panxi plateau. 60 isolates were selected for 16S rDNA-RFLP analysis and 14 representative strains were chosen for 16S rDNA sequencing. According to the phylogenetic analysis, seven isolates were Streptomyces sp., while the remainder belonged to genera Micromonospora, Oerskovia, Nonomuraea, Promicromonospora and Rhodococcus. Antimicrobial activity analysis combined with the results of amplifying genes coding for polyketide synthetase (PKS-I, PKS-II) and nonribosomal peptide synthetase (NRPS) showed that endophytic actinomycetes isolated from medicinal plants in Panxi plateau had broad-spectrum antimicrobial activity and potential natural product diversity, which further proved that endophytic actinomycetes are valuable reservoirs of novel bioactive compounds. PMID:20567975

  20. Plant aldo-keto reductases (AKRs) as multi-tasking soldiers involved in diverse plant metabolic processes and stress defense: A structure-function update.

    PubMed

    Sengupta, Debashree; Naik, Dhiraj; Reddy, Attipalli R

    2015-05-01

    The aldo-keto reductase (AKR) superfamily comprises of a large number of primarily monomeric protein members, which reduce a broad spectrum of substrates ranging from simple sugars to potentially toxic aldehydes. Plant AKRs can be broadly categorized into four important functional groups, which highlight their roles in diverse plant metabolic reactions including reactive aldehyde detoxification, biosynthesis of osmolytes, secondary metabolism and membrane transport. Further, multiple overlapping functional aspects of plant AKRs including biotic and abiotic stress defense, production of commercially important secondary metabolites, iron acquisition from soil, plant-microbe interactions etc. are discussed as subcategories within respective major groups. Owing to the broad substrate specificity and multiple stress tolerance of the well-characterized AKR4C9 from Arabidopsis thaliana, protein sequences of all the homologues of AKR4C9 (A9-like proteins) from forty different plant species (Phytozome database) were analyzed. The analysis revealed that all A9-like proteins possess strictly conserved key catalytic residues (D-47, Y-52 and K-81) and belong to the pfam00248 and cl00470 AKR superfamilies. Based on structural homology of the three flexible loops of AKR4C9 (Loop A, B and C) responsible for broad substrate specificity, A9-like proteins found in Brassica rapa, Phaseolus vulgaris, Cucumis sativus, Populus trichocarpa and Solanum lycopersicum were predicted to have a similar range of substrate specificity. Thus, plant AKRs can be considered as potential breeding targets for developing stress tolerant varieties in the future. The present review provides a consolidated update on the current research status of plant AKRs with an emphasis on important functional aspects as well as their potential future prospects and an insight into the overall structure-function relationships of A9-like proteins. PMID:25840343

  1. Application of the R6 failure assessment diagram to UK nuclear plant assessments

    SciTech Connect

    Green, D.; Daniels, B.D. [AEA Technology, Risley (United Kingdom); Ainsworth, R.A. [Nuclear Electric plc, Barnwood (United Kingdom)

    1996-12-01

    The Failure Assessment Diagram (FAD) approach to fracture assessment has been used extensively in the UK nuclear power industry over many years. More recently the approach has been extended to account for creep strain which may occur at elevated temperature. Applications of the technique have concerned the demonstration of large critical defect size and leak-before-break arguments. This paper considers some of these applications, both with and without creep strain. The method and necessary input data are briefly reviewed and the results of the applications are discussed. The benefits derived from the approach are highlighted. It is concluded that the creep modified route provides an expedient extension to the well established (FAD) approach and has contributed significantly to nuclear plant safety justifications.

  2. Nutrient transfer to plants by phylogenetically diverse fungi suggests convergent evolutionary strategies in rhizospheric symbionts

    PubMed Central

    Behie, Scott W.; Padilla-Guerrero, Israel E.; Bidochka, Michael J.

    2013-01-01

    Most land plants are able to form symbiotic associations with fungi, and in many cases these associations are necessary for plant and fungal survival. These plant/fungal associations are formed with mycorrhizal (arbuscular mycorrhizal or ectomycorrhizal) or endophytic fungi, fungi from distinct phylogenetic lineages. While it has been shown that mycorrhizal fungi are able to transfer nutrients to plant roots in exchange for carbon, endophytes have been thought as asymptomatic colonizers. Recently, however, it has been shown that some insect pathogenic endophytic fungi are able to transfer insect derived nitrogen to plant roots, likely in exchange for plant sugars. Here we explore potential convergent evolutionary strategies for nutrient transfer between insect pathogenic endophytes and mycorrhizal fungus. PMID:23802036

  3. Diversity of aestival plant communities of irrigated garden croplands in Cretan villages

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Erwin Bergmeier

    2008-01-01

    A numerical classification of 36 relevés of the spontaneous plants occurring in irrigated garden crop- lands in Crete revealed three plant communities with different species combinations described here as new: Solano nitidibaccati-Amaranthetum powellii, Amaranthetum blitoidis-viridis und Digitario sanguinalis-Cyperetum rotundi. The associations show distinct local distribution patterns and differ in their ecological preferences. Similarities with and differences to other aestival plant

  4. Analysis of plant species diversity with respect to island characteristics on the Channel Islands

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Aaron Moody

    Aim Species richness of native, endemic, and exotic plant groups is examined relative to island area, disturbance history, geological history, and other physical characteristics. Of particular interest are the biogeographic factors that underlie (a) differences in species-area and species-isolation relationships between plant groups; and (b) adherence or departure of individual islands and\\/or plant groups from expected patterns. Location The eight

  5. Genome-wide assessment of worldwide chicken SNP genetic diversity indicates significant absence of rare alleles in commercial breeds.

    PubMed

    Muir, William M; Wong, Gane Ka-Shu; Zhang, Yong; Wang, Jun; Groenen, Martien A M; Crooijmans, Richard P M A; Megens, Hendrik-Jan; Zhang, Huanmin; Okimoto, Ron; Vereijken, Addie; Jungerius, Annemieke; Albers, Gerard A A; Lawley, Cindy Taylor; Delany, Mary E; MacEachern, Sean; Cheng, Hans H

    2008-11-11

    Breed utilization, genetic improvement, and industry consolidation are predicted to have major impacts on the genetic composition of commercial chickens. Consequently, the question arises as to whether sufficient genetic diversity remains within industry stocks to address future needs. With the chicken genome sequence and more than 2.8 million single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), it is now possible to address biodiversity using a previously unattainable metric: missing alleles. To achieve this assessment, 2551 informative SNPs were genotyped on 2580 individuals, including 1440 commercial birds. The proportion of alleles lacking in commercial populations was assessed by (1) estimating the global SNP allele frequency distribution from a hypothetical ancestral population as a reference, then determining the portion of the distribution lost, and then (2) determining the relationship between allele loss and the inbreeding coefficient. The results indicate that 50% or more of the genetic diversity in ancestral breeds is absent in commercial pure lines. The missing genetic diversity resulted from the limited number of incorporated breeds. As such, hypothetically combining stocks within a company could recover only preexisting within-breed variability, but not more rare ancestral alleles. We establish that SNP weights act as sentinels of biodiversity and provide an objective assessment of the strains that are most valuable for preserving genetic diversity. This is the first experimental analysis investigating the extant genetic diversity of virtually an entire agricultural commodity. The methods presented are the first to characterize biodiversity in terms of allelic diversity and to objectively link rate of allele loss with the inbreeding coefficient. PMID:18981413

  6. Gene Flow, Risk Assessment and the Environmental Release of Transgenic Plants

    Microsoft Academic Search

    Stephen Chandler; Jim M. Dunwell

    2008-01-01

    The release of genetically modified plants is governed by regulations that aim to provide an assessment of potential impact on the environment. One of the most important components of this risk assessment is an evaluation of the probability of gene flow. In this review, we provide an overview of the current literature on gene flow from transgenic plants, providing a

  7. Forest Research Annual Report and Accounts 2003200414 Biodiversity assessment in planted

    E-print Network

    Forest Research Annual Report and Accounts 2003­200414 Biodiversity assessment in planted forests Publication of the results of the Biodiversity Assessment programme: Biodiversity in Britain's planted forests programme that investigated 54 plots of one hectare in 16 forests to capture a picture of the biodiversity

  8. Tourism and recreation listed as a threat for a wide diversity of vascular plants: a continental scale review.

    PubMed

    Rankin, Benjamin Luke; Ballantyne, Mark; Pickering, Catherine Marina

    2015-05-01

    Tourism and recreation are diverse and popular activities. They may also contribute to the risk of extinction for some plants because of the range and severity of their impacts, including in protected areas: but which species, where and how? To evaluate the extent to which tourism and recreation may be threatening process for plants, we conducted a continental level review of listed threats to endangered vascular plants using data from Australia. Of the 659 vascular plant species listed as critically endangered or endangered by the Australian Government, tourism and recreation were listed as a threat(s) for 42%. This is more than those listed as threatened by climate change (26%) and close to the proportion listed as threatened by altered fire regimes (47%). There are plant species with tourism and recreation listed threats in all States and Territories and from all but one bioregion in Australia. Although more than 45 plant families have species with tourism and recreation listed as threats, orchids were the most common species listed as at risk from these threats (90 species). The most common types of threats listed were visitors collecting plants in protected areas (113 species), trampling by hikers and others (84 species), damage from recreational vehicles (59 species) and road infrastructure (39 species). Despite the frequency with which tourism and recreation were listed as threats in Australia, research quantifying these threats and methods to ameliorate their impacts are still limited. Although this lack of information contributes to the challenge of managing tourism and recreation, impacts from visitors will often be easier to manage within natural areas than those from larger scale threats such as altered fire regimes and climate change. PMID:25748596

  9. A survey of PPR proteins identifies DYW domains like those of land plant RNA editing factors in diverse eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Schallenberg-Rüdinger, Mareike; Lenz, Henning; Polsakiewicz, Monika; Gott, Jonatha M; Knoop, Volker

    2013-01-01

    The pentatricopeptide repeat modules of PPR proteins are key to their sequence-specific binding to RNAs. Gene families encoding PPR proteins are greatly expanded in land plants where hundreds of them participate in RNA maturation, mainly in mitochondria and chloroplasts. Many plant PPR proteins contain additional carboxyterminal domains and have been identified as essential factors for specific events of C-to-U RNA editing, which is abundant in the two endosymbiotic plant organelles. Among those carboxyterminal domain additions to plant PPR proteins, the so-called DYW domain is particularly interesting given its similarity to cytidine deaminases. The frequency of organelle C-to-U RNA editing and the diversity of DYW-type PPR proteins correlate well in plants and both were recently identified outside of land plants, in the protist Naegleria gruberi. Here we present a systematic survey of PPR protein genes and report on the identification of additional DYW-type PPR proteins in the protists Acanthamoeba castellanii, Malawimonas jakobiformis, and Physarum polycephalum. Moreover, DYW domains were also found in basal branches of multi-cellular lineages outside of land plants, including the alga Nitella flexilis and the rotifers Adineta ricciae and Philodina roseola. Intriguingly, the well-characterized and curious patterns of mitochondrial RNA editing in the slime mold Physarum also include examples of C-to-U changes. Finally, we identify candidate sites for mitochondrial RNA editing in Malawimonas, further supporting a link between DYW-type PPR proteins and C-to-U editing, which may have remained hitherto unnoticed in additional eukaryote lineages. PMID:23899506

  10. Genetic diversity of Dianthus accessions as assessed using two molecular marker systems (SRAPs and ISSRs) and morphological traits

    Microsoft Academic Search

    XiaoPeng Fu; GuoGui Ning; LiPing Gao; ManZhu Bao

    2008-01-01

    Dianthus chinensis, Dianthus barbatus and Dianthus superbus are members of the Caryophyllaceae and are grown widely as ornamental plants. Information about relative genetic relationships can facilitate breeding programs. Here, we have compared two polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based systems (sequence-related amplified polymorphisms (SRAPs) and inter-simple sequence repeats (ISSRs)) and morpological trait measurements for their relative effectiveness in estimating the genetic diversity

  11. Modeling risk assessment for nuclear processing plants with LAVA (Los Alamos Vulnerability and Risk Assessment)

    SciTech Connect

    Smith, S.T.; Tisinger, R.M.

    1988-01-01

    Using the Los Alamos Vulnerability and Risk Assessment (LAVA) methodology, we developed a model for assessing risks associated with nuclear processing plants. LAVA is a three-part systematic approach to risk assessment. The first part is the mathematical methodology; the second is the general personal computer-based software engine; and the third is the application itself. The methodology provides a framework for creating applications for the software engine to operate upon; all application-specific information is data. Using LAVA, we build knowledge-based expert systems to assess risks in applications systems comprising a subject system and a safeguards system. The subject system model is sets of threats, assets and undesirable outcomes. The safeguards system model is sets of safeguard functions for protecting the assets from the threats by preventing or ameliorating the undesirable outcomes, sets of safeguards subfunctions whose performance determine whether the function is adequate and complete, and sets of issues, appearing as interactive questionnaires, whose measures (in both monetary and linguistic terms) define both the weaknesses in the safeguards system and the potential costs of an undesirable outcome occurring. LAVA applications include our popular computer security application and applications for embedded systems, survivability systems, transborder data flow systems, property control system, and others. 7 refs., 4 figs.

  12. Aging assessment of essential HVAC chillers used in nuclear power plants

    Microsoft Academic Search

    D. E. Blahnik; T. W. Camp

    1996-01-01

    The Pacific Northwest Laboratory conducted a comprehensive aging assessment of chillers used in the essential safety air-conditioning systems in nuclear power plants (NPPs). The chillers used, and air-conditioning systems served, vary in design from plant to plant. The review of operating experience indicated that chillers experience aging degradation and failures. The primary aging factors of concern for chillers include vibration,

  13. Assessment Plan for Ph.D, students in the Field of Plant Breeding 1. Learning outcomes

    E-print Network

    Walter, M.Todd

    Assessment Plan for Ph.D, students in the Field of Plant Breeding 1. Learning outcomes When students complete the Ph.D., they should be able to: 1. Conduct original, publishable research in plant breeding/genetics 2. Demonstrate in-depth knowledge about plant breeding/genetics and at least one other

  14. Web-based Tool for Preliminary Assessment of Wind Power Plant Design

    E-print Network

    Mustakerov, Ivan

    Web-based Tool for Preliminary Assessment of Wind Power Plant Design Daniela Borissova1 and Ivan. Designing of reliable and cost-effective industrial wind power plant is a prerequisite for the effective use of wind power as an alternative resource. The design of a wind power plant includes the determination

  15. Assessment of the Diversity, Abundance, and Ecological Distribution of Members of Candidate Division SR1 Reveals a High Level of Phylogenetic Diversity but Limited Morphotypic Diversity? †

    PubMed Central

    Davis, James P.; Youssef, Noha H.; Elshahed, Mostafa S.

    2009-01-01

    We used a combination of 16S rRNA gene clone library surveys, quantitative PCR (qPCR) analysis, and fluorescent in situ hybridization to investigate the diversity, abundance, and distribution of members of candidate division SR1 in multiple habitats. Using SR1-specific 16S rRNA gene primers, we identified multiple novel SR1 lineages in four different anaerobic environments: sediments from Zodletone Spring, a sulfide- and sulfur-rich spring in southwestern Oklahoma; inner layers of microbial mats obtained from Sperm Pool, a high-temperature, low-pH pool (55°C, pH 2.5) in Yellowstone National Park; fresh bovine ruminal contents; and anaerobic freshwater pond sediments (Duck Pond) in Norman, Oklahoma. qPCR analysis indicated that SR1 members constitute a small fraction (<0.01%) of the microbial communities in Duck Pond and ruminal samples but constitute a significant fraction (11.6 and 48.7%) of the total number of bacterial 16S rRNA genes in Zodletone Spring and the inner layers of Sperm Pool microbial mat samples, respectively. By using SR1-specific fluorescent probes, filamentous cells were identified as the sole SR1 morphotype in all environments examined, with the exception of Sperm Pool, where a second bacillus morphotype was also identified. Using a full-cycle 16S rRNA approach, we show that each of these two morphotypes corresponds to a specific phylogenetic lineage identified in the Sperm Pool clone library. This work greatly expands the intralineage phylogenetic diversity within candidate division SR1 and provides valuable quantification and visualization tools that could be used for investigating the ecological roles, dynamics, and genomics of this as-yet-uncultured bacterial phylum. PMID:19395567

  16. On the relationship between bird and woody plant species diversity in the Uttara Kannada district of south India.

    PubMed Central

    Daniels, R J; Joshi, N V; Gadgil, M

    1992-01-01

    Bird species richness is inversely related to woody plant species diversity and vertical stratification in the natural vegetation of Uttara Kannada, the district with the largest contiguous tract of humid tropical forest in peninsular India. This inverse relationship may be explained by the fact that although the peninsular Indian evergreen forests are rich in woody plant species when compared with the drier vegetation, they harbor an impoverished bird fauna due to their smaller overall extent and greater isolation. Much of this impoverishment is accounted for by the absence of many species of understory timaliids characteristic of the humid evergreen forests of the Eastern Himalayas and Southeast Asia. The plantations of Uttara Kannada largely derive their bird fauna from the drier vegetation and exhibit the commoner trend of a positive correlation between bird species richness and vertical stratification of the vegetation. PMID:11607298

  17. Physiological responses of herbaceous plants to climate change: a century long assessment based on the stable isotope analysis of herbaria specimens

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moreno-Gutierrez, Cristina; Siegwolf, Rolf; Kahmen, Ansgar

    2015-04-01

    It is important to understand plant physiological responses to climate change, as these responses could influence global carbon and water cycles and could ultimately drive changes in plant communities' distribution and biodiversity. Some studies have already related drifts in species' distribution to climate change and manipulative experiments found short-term plant physiological responses to variations in climate. However, plant physiological responses may be species specific and their magnitude was found to decrease with time in these experimental studies. This indicates possible long-term processes of acclimation and adaptation in plants and urges the need to assess the long-term responses of plants to climate change. The isotopic analysis of archived plant material offers the exceptional opportunity to reconstruct the physiological activity of plants over long time periods. The carbon isotopic composition of plants is a good proxy of leaf-level intrinsic water use efficiency and leaf oxygen isotopic composition can provide a time-integrated indication of leaf stomatal conductance during the growing season. Previous studies analysing the physiological activity of plants over long time periods have largely focused on the stable isotope analyses of tree ring chronosequences. Trees represent, however, less than 2% of plant species found in Switzerland. The stable isotope analysis of herbarium samples offers the opportunity to reconstruct the physiological processes of a large range of different plant species from different environments. The objective of this study is to assess the long-term physiological responses of herbaceous plant species from diverse environments and functional groups to changes in climate occurred during the past centuries in Switzerland. In order to do so, leaf herbarium samples from a large number of herbaceous plants species are analysed for their stable oxygen and carbon isotope ratios. Samples are collected from the unique herbaria hold at the University of Basel which cover 600'000 specimens collected mostly in Switzerland since the 18th century for a wide range of species and environments in Switzerland.

  18. RNA-Based Assessment of Diversity and Composition of Active Archaeal Communities in the German Bight

    PubMed Central

    Wemheuer, Bernd; Wemheuer, Franziska; Daniel, Rolf

    2012-01-01

    Archaea play an important role in various biogeochemical cycles. They are known extremophiles inhabiting environments such as thermal springs or hydrothermal vents. Recent studies have revealed a significant abundance of Archaea in moderate environments, for example, temperate sea water. Nevertheless, the composition and ecosystem function of these marine archaeal communities is largely unknown. To assess diversity and composition of active archaeal communities in the German Bight, seven marine water samples were taken and studied by RNA-based analysis of ribosomal 16S rRNA. For this purpose, total RNA was extracted from the samples and converted to cDNA. Archaeal community structures were investigated by pyrosequencing-based analysis of 16S rRNA amplicons generated from cDNA. To our knowledge, this is the first study combining next-generation sequencing and metatranscriptomics to study archaeal communities in marine habitats. The pyrosequencing-derived dataset comprised 62,045 archaeal 16S rRNA sequences. We identified Halobacteria as the predominant archaeal group across all samples with increased abundance in algal blooms. Thermoplasmatales (Euryarchaeota) and the Marine Group I (Thaumarchaeota) were identified in minor abundances. It is indicated that archaeal community patterns were influenced by environmental conditions. PMID:23197941

  19. Genetic diversity in Passiflora species assessed by morphological and its sequence analysis.

    PubMed

    Ramaiya, Shiamala Devi; Bujang, Japar Sidik; Zakaria, Muta Harah

    2014-01-01

    This study used morphological characterization and phylogenetic analysis of the internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region of nuclear ribosomal DNA to investigate the phylogeny of Passiflora species. The samples were collected from various regions of East Malaysia, and discriminant function analysis based on linear combinations of morphological variables was used to classify the Passiflora species. The biplots generated five distinct groups discriminated by morphological variables. The group consisted of cultivars of P. edulis with high levels of genetic similarity; in contrast, P. foetida was highly divergent from other species in the morphological biplots. The final dataset of aligned sequences from nine studied Passiflora accessions and 30 other individuals obtained from GenBank database (NCBI) yielded one most parsimonious tree with two strongly supported clades. Maximum parsimony (MP) tree showed the phylogenetic relationships within this subgenus Passiflora support the classification at the series level. The constructed phylogenic tree also confirmed the divergence of P. foetida from all other species and the closeness of wild and cultivated species. The phylogenetic relationships were consistent with results of morphological assessments. The results of this study indicate that ITS region analysis represents a useful tool for evaluating genetic diversity in Passiflora at the species level. PMID:25050402

  20. Diversity of Clonostachys species assessed by molecular phylogenetics and MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry.

    PubMed

    Abreu, Lucas M; Moreira, Gláucia M; Ferreira, Douglas; Rodrigues-Filho, Edson; Pfenning, Ludwig H

    2014-12-01

    We assessed the species diversity among 45 strains of Clonostachys from different substrates and localities in Brazil using molecular phylogenetics, and compared the results with the phenotypic classification of strains obtained from matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS). Phylogenetic analyses were based on beta tubulin (Tub), ITS-LSU rDNA, and a combined Tub-ITS DNA dataset. MALDI-TOF MS analyses were performed using intact conidia and conidiophores of strains cultivated on oatmeal agar and 4% malt extract agar. Six known species were identified: Clonostachys byssicola, Clonostachys candelabrum, Clonostachys pseudochroleuca, Clonostachys rhizophaga, Clonostachys rogersoniana, and Clonostachys rosea. Two clades and two singleton lineages did not correspond to known species represented in the reference DNA dataset and were identified as Clonostachys sp. 1-4. Multivariate cluster analyses of MALDI-TOF MS data classified the strains into eight clusters and three singletons, corresponding to the ten identified species plus one additional cluster containing two strains of C. rogersoniana that split from the other co-specific strains. The consistent results of MALDI-TOF MS supported the identification of strains assigned to C. byssicola and C. pseudochroleuca, which did not form well supported clades in all phylogenetic analyses, but formed distinct clusters in the MALDI-TOF dendrograms. PMID:25457948