Science.gov

Sample records for important agricultural traits

  1. Determining the Most Important Physiological and Agronomic Traits Contributing to Maize Grain Yield through Machine Learning Algorithms: A New Avenue in Intelligent Agriculture

    PubMed Central

    Shekoofa, Avat; Emam, Yahya; Shekoufa, Navid; Ebrahimi, Mansour; Ebrahimie, Esmaeil

    2014-01-01

    Prediction is an attempt to accurately forecast the outcome of a specific situation while using input information obtained from a set of variables that potentially describe the situation. They can be used to project physiological and agronomic processes; regarding this fact, agronomic traits such as yield can be affected by a large number of variables. In this study, we analyzed a large number of physiological and agronomic traits by screening, clustering, and decision tree models to select the most relevant factors for the prospect of accurately increasing maize grain yield. Decision tree models (with nearly the same performance evaluation) were the most useful tools in understanding the underlying relationships in physiological and agronomic features for selecting the most important and relevant traits (sowing date-location, kernel number per ear, maximum water content, kernel weight, and season duration) corresponding to the maize grain yield. In particular, decision tree generated by C&RT algorithm was the best model for yield prediction based on physiological and agronomical traits which can be extensively employed in future breeding programs. No significant differences in the decision tree models were found when feature selection filtering on data were used, but positive feature selection effect observed in clustering models. Finally, the results showed that the proposed model techniques are useful tools for crop physiologists to search through large datasets seeking patterns for the physiological and agronomic factors, and may assist the selection of the most important traits for the individual site and field. In particular, decision tree models are method of choice with the capability of illustrating different pathways of yield increase in breeding programs, governed by their hierarchy structure of feature ranking as well as pattern discovery via various combinations of features. PMID:24830330

  2. Determining the most important physiological and agronomic traits contributing to maize grain yield through machine learning algorithms: a new avenue in intelligent agriculture.

    PubMed

    Shekoofa, Avat; Emam, Yahya; Shekoufa, Navid; Ebrahimi, Mansour; Ebrahimie, Esmaeil

    2014-01-01

    Prediction is an attempt to accurately forecast the outcome of a specific situation while using input information obtained from a set of variables that potentially describe the situation. They can be used to project physiological and agronomic processes; regarding this fact, agronomic traits such as yield can be affected by a large number of variables. In this study, we analyzed a large number of physiological and agronomic traits by screening, clustering, and decision tree models to select the most relevant factors for the prospect of accurately increasing maize grain yield. Decision tree models (with nearly the same performance evaluation) were the most useful tools in understanding the underlying relationships in physiological and agronomic features for selecting the most important and relevant traits (sowing date-location, kernel number per ear, maximum water content, kernel weight, and season duration) corresponding to the maize grain yield. In particular, decision tree generated by C&RT algorithm was the best model for yield prediction based on physiological and agronomical traits which can be extensively employed in future breeding programs. No significant differences in the decision tree models were found when feature selection filtering on data were used, but positive feature selection effect observed in clustering models. Finally, the results showed that the proposed model techniques are useful tools for crop physiologists to search through large datasets seeking patterns for the physiological and agronomic factors, and may assist the selection of the most important traits for the individual site and field. In particular, decision tree models are method of choice with the capability of illustrating different pathways of yield increase in breeding programs, governed by their hierarchy structure of feature ranking as well as pattern discovery via various combinations of features. PMID:24830330

  3. Competencies and Traits of Successful Agricultural Science Teachers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Roberts, T. Grady; Dooley, Kim E.; Harlin, Julie F.; Murphrey, Theresa P.

    2006-01-01

    The purpose of this mixed-methods study was to identify the required competencies and traits of successful agricultural science teachers. Data was collected from focus groups of agricultural science teachers and a content analysis of existing research. Results identified 47 unique traits or competencies that were divided into the categories of…

  4. Seed traits and genes important for translational biology – highlights from recent discoveries

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Seeds provide foods, feeds, and fuels. They are also an important delivery system of genetic information, which is essential for the survival of wild species in ecosystems and the production of agricultural species. In this review, seed traits important for agriculture are discussed with an emphasis...

  5. RNAi in agriculturally-important arthropods

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Our aim in this chapter is to provide an overview of the profound knowledge accumulated in recent years from invertebrate RNAi studies, but with a focus on agriculturally important arthropods. We start with a brief discussion of the RNAi mechanism to introduce readers to key concepts that underlie t...

  6. Economic importance of bats in agriculture

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Boyles, Justin G.; Cryan, Paul M.; McCracken, Gary F.; Kunz, Thomas H.

    2011-01-01

    White-nose syndrome (WNS) and the increased development of wind-power facilities are threatening populations of insectivorous bats in North America. Bats are voracious predators of nocturnal insects, including many crop and forest pests. We present here analyses suggesting that loss of bats in North America could lead to agricultural losses estimated at more than $3.7 billion/year. Urgent efforts are needed to educate the public and policy-makers about the ecological and economic importance of insectivorous bats and to provide practical conservation solutions.

  7. Traits, habitats, and clades: identifying traits of potential importance to environmental filtering.

    PubMed

    Mayfield, Margaret M; Boni, Maciej F; Ackerly, David D

    2009-07-01

    Environmental filtering is a fundamental process in the ecological assembly of communities. Recently developed phylogenetic tools identify patterns associated with environmental filtering across whole communities. Here we introduce a novel method that allows the detection of traits involved in the environmental filtering of species from specific clades in specific habitat types. Our approach identifies nonindependent trait/habitat/clade (THC) associations and also provides a framework for detecting clearly defined two-way trait/clade, trait/habitat, and clade/habitat associations. The THC method relies on exact binomial tests and differentiates THC associations resulting from a three-way interaction from those that are generated by one or more underlying significant two-way interactions. It can also detect THC associations for which there are no significant two-way associations (trait/habitat, trait/clade, clade/habitat). To illustrate the THC method, we examine plant pollination and dispersal traits from six habitat types in a fragmented Costa Rican landscape. Results suggest that these traits are not widely important for the environmental filtering of most clades in this landscape, but animal dispersal and insect pollination are involved in the filtering of monocots and the Piperaceae in rain forest understory. PMID:19463061

  8. Perceived importance of employees' traits in the service industry.

    PubMed

    Lange, Rense; Houran, James

    2009-04-01

    Selection assessments are common practice to help reduce employee turnover in the service industry, but as too little is known about employees' characteristics, which are valued most highly by human resources professionals, a sample of 108 managers and human resources professionals rated the perceived importance of 31 performance traits for Line, Middle, and Senior employees. Rasch scaling analyses indicated strong consensus among the respondents. Nonsocial skills, abilities, and traits such as Ethical Awareness, Self-motivation, Writing Skills, Verbal Ability, Creativity, and Problem Solving were rated as more important for higher level employees. By contrast, traits which directly affect the interaction with customers and coworkers (Service Orientation, Communication Style, Agreeableness, Sense of Humor, Sensitivity to Diversity, Group Process, and Team Building) were rated as more important for lower level employees. Respondents' age and sex did not substantially alter these findings. Results are discussed in terms of improving industry professionals' perceived ecological and external validities of generic and customized assessments of employee. PMID:19610487

  9. Linking agricultural practices, mycorrhizal fungi, and traits mediating plant-insect interactions.

    PubMed

    Barber, Nicholas A; Kiers, E Toby; Theis, Nina; Hazzard, Ruth V; Adler, Lynn S

    2013-10-01

    Agricultural management has profound effects on soil communities. Activities such as fertilizer inputs can modify the composition of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) communities, which form important symbioses with the roots of most crop plants. Intensive conventional agricultural management may select for less mutualistic AMF with reduced benefits to host plants compared to organic management, but these differences are poorly understood. AMF are generally evaluated based on their direct growth effects on plants. However, mycorrhizal colonization also may alter plant traits such as tissue nutrients, defensive chemistry, or floral traits, which mediate important plant-insect interactions like herbivory and pollination. To determine the effect of AMF from different farming practices on plant performance and traits that putatively mediate species interactions, we performed a greenhouse study by inoculating Cucumis sativus (cucumber, Cucurbitaceae) with AMF from conventional farms, organic farms, and a commercial AMF inoculum. We measured growth and a suite of plant traits hypothesized to be important predictors of herbivore resistance and pollinator attraction. Several leaf and root traits and flower production were significantly affected by AMF inoculum. Both conventional and organic AMF reduced leaf P content but increased Na content compared to control and commercial AMF. Leaf defenses were unaffected by AMF treatments, but conventional AMF increased root cucurbitacin C, the primary defensive chemical of C. sativus, compared to organic AMF. These effects may have important consequences for herbivore preference and population dynamics. AMF from both organic and conventional farms decreased flower production relative to commercial and control treatments, which may reduce pollinator attraction and plant reproduction. AMF from both farm types also reduced seed germination, but effects on plant growth were limited. Our results suggest that studies only considering AMF effects on growth may overlook changes in plant traits that have the potential to influence interactions, and hence yield, on farms. Given the effects of AMF on plant traits documented here, and the great importance of both herbivores and pollinators to wild and cultivated plants, we advocate for comprehensive assessments of mycorrhizal effects in complex community contexts, with the aim of incorporating multispecies interactions both above and below the soil surface. PMID:24261037

  10. Biology: An Important Agricultural Engineering Mechanism

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Henderson, S. M.

    1974-01-01

    Describes the field of bioengineering with particular emphasis on agricultural engineering, and presents the results of a survey of schools that combine biology and engineering in their curricula. (JR)

  11. Mycotoxin contamination of commercially important agricultural commodities

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Fungal toxins, called aflatoxins and other mold toxins, are a serious problem in US agricultural commodities. Due to aflatoxins resilience to industrial processes contaminated crops (corn, cotton, peanuts, and tree nuts) cannot be used. The loss of these commodities results in serious economic impa...

  12. Effect of scale on trait predictors of species responses to agriculture.

    PubMed

    Gilroy, James J; Medina Uribe, Claudia A; Haugaasen, Torbjørn; Edwards, David P

    2015-04-01

    Species persistence in human-altered landscapes can depend on factors operating at multiple spatial scales. To understand anthropogenic impacts on biodiversity, it is useful to examine relationships between species traits and their responses to land-use change. A key knowledge gap concerns whether these relationships vary depending on the scale of response under consideration. We examined how local- and large-scale habitat variables influence the occupancy dynamics of a bird community in cloud forest zones in the Colombian Chocó-Andes. Using data collected across a continuum of forest and agriculture, we examined which traits best predict species responses to local variation in farmland and which traits best predict species responses to isolation from contiguous forest. Global range size was a strong predictor of species responses to agriculture at both scales; widespread species were less likely to decline as local habitat cover decreased and as distance from forest increased. Habitat specialization was a strong predictor of species responses only at the local scale. Open-habitat species were particularly likely to increase as pasture increased, but they were relatively insensitive to variation in distance to forest. Foraging plasticity and flocking behavior were strong predictors of species responses to distance from forest, but not their responses to local habitat. Species with lower plasticity in foraging behaviors and obligate flock-following species were more likely to decline as distance from contiguous forest increased. For species exhibiting these latter traits, persistence in tropical landscapes may depend on the protection of larger contiguous blocks of forest, rather than the integration of smaller-scale woodland areas within farmland. Species listed as threatened or near threatened on the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List were also more likely to decline in response to both local habitat quality and isolation from forest relative to least-concern species, underlining the importance of contiguous forests for threatened taxa. PMID:25395246

  13. Importance of energy balance in agriculture.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meco, R.; Moreno, M. M.; Lacasta, C.; Tarquis, A. M.; Moreno, C.

    2012-04-01

    Since the beginning, man has tried to control nature and the environment, and the use of energy, mainly from non-renewable sources providing the necessary power for that. The consequences of this long fight against nature has reached a critical state of unprecedented worldwide environmental degradation, as evidenced by the increasing erosion of fertile lands, the deforestation processes, the pollution of water, air and land by agrochemicals, the loss of plant and animal species, the progressive deterioration of the ozone layer and signs of global warming. This is exacerbated by the increasing population growth, implying a steady increase in consumption, and consequently, in the use of energy. Unfortunately, all these claims are resulting in serious economic and environmental problems worldwide. Because the economic and environmental future of the countries is interrelated, it becomes necessary to adopt sustainable development models based on the use of renewable and clean energies, the search for alternative resources and the use of productive systems more efficient from an energy standpoint, always with a reduction of greenhouse gas emissions. In relation to the agricultural sector, the question we ask is: how long can we keep the current energy-intensive agricultural techniques in developed countries? To analyze this aspect, energy balance is a very helpful tool because can lead to more efficient, sustainable and environment-friendly production systems for each agro-climatic region. This requires the identification of all the inputs and the outputs involved and their conversion to energy values by means of corresponding energy coefficients or equivalents (International Federation of Institutes for Advanced Studies). Energy inputs (EI) can be divided in direct (energy directly used in farms as fuel, machines, fertilizers, seeds, herbicides, human labor, etc.) and indirect (energy not consumed in the farm but in the elaboration, manufacturing or manipulation of inputs) ones. Energy outputs (EO) are considered as the calorific value of the harvested biomass (main products and sub-products), calculated from the total production (kg/ha) and its corresponding energy coefficient (strongly correlated to the biochemical composition of the products). Based on energy inputs and outputs, energy efficiency can be expressed as (i) net energy produced (NE) (also known as energy gain or energy balance, calculated as EI-EO and expressed as MJ/ha), (ii) the energy output/input ratio (also known as energy efficiency and calculated as EO/EI), and (iii) energy productivity (EP) (Crop yield/EI, expressed as kg/MJ). Funding provided by Spanish Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovación (MICINN) through project no. AGL2010-21501/AGR is greatly appreciated.

  14. The Importance of Agriculture Science Course Sequencing in High Schools: A View from Collegiate Agriculture Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wheelus, Robin P.

    2009-01-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate the importance of Agriculture Science course sequencing in high schools, as a preparatory factor for students enrolled in collegiate agriculture classes. With the variety of courses listed in the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) for Agriculture Science, it has been possible for counselors,…

  15. Use of Genomics in Economically Important Traits in Ovine Populations

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The objective of this review is to summarize relevant results from the use of genomics in sheep. Genomics has been used to identify genes associated with production, reproduction, carcass traits, and disease-related traits in sheep. A brief discussion on the concept of genomics is included. Genome-w...

  16. Occurrence of an herbicide-resistant plant trait in agricultural field margins.

    PubMed

    Gage, Karla L; Gibson, David J; Young, Bryan G; Young, Julie M; Matthews, Joseph L; Weller, Stephen C; Wilson, Robert G

    2015-09-01

    Agricultural environments allow study of evolutionary change in plants. An example of evolution within agroecological systems is the selection for resistance to the herbicide glyphosate within the weed, Conyza canadensis. Changes in survivorship and reproduction associated with the development of glyphosate resistance (GR) may impact fitness and influence the frequency of occurrence of the GR trait. We hypothesized that site characteristics and history would affect the occurrence of GR C. canadensis in field margins. We surveyed GR occurrence in field margins and asked whether there were correlations between GR occurrence and location, crop rotation, GR crop trait rotation, crop type, use of tillage, and the diversity of herbicides used. In a field experiment, we hypothesized that there would be no difference in fitness between GR and glyphosate-susceptible (GS) plants. We asked whether there were differences in survivorship, phenology, reproduction, and herbivory between 2 GR and 2 GS populations of C. canadensis in agrestal and ruderal habitats. We found that geographic location was an important factor in the occurrence of GR C. canadensis in field margins. Although not consistently associated with either glyphosate resistance or glyphosate susceptibility, there were differences in phenology, survivorship, and herbivory among biotypes of C. canadensis. We found equal or greater fitness in GR biotypes, compared to GS biotypes, and GR plants were present in field margins. Field margins or ruderal habitats may provide refugia for GR C. canadensis, allowing reproduction and further selection to occur as seeds recolonize the agrestal habitat. Agricultural practices may select for ecological changes that feed back into the evolution of plants in ruderal habitats. PMID:26445665

  17. The Importance of Agricultural Weather Information: A Michigan Survey.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carlson, J. D.

    1989-04-01

    A survey was conducted across Michigan in early 1986 in an attempt to better understand the needs of the agricultural community for weather information. The sample analyzed represented 318 respondents in agricultural professions. A smaller sample (227 respondents) representing four major groups of growers was also studied: field crops, fruit, vegetables, and livestock. The survey indicates the importance of accurate and timely agricultural weather information. A vast majority (88%) use such information on a daily basis, and most (71%) indicate potential annual savings in excess of $1000 through using such information. A variety of weather and weather-related variables were seen as important. Although some of the important variables, such as precipitation and air temperature, are included in public forecasts, many of them, such as degree days, humidity, and evaporation, are not. The existence of agricultural forecasts and advisories thus remains essential. Commercial radio and television are the two top current and preferred means of receiving agricultural weather information, but there is increasing desire to utilize such specialized modes as NOAA Weather Radio, telephone recordings, and computerized information-delivery systems. The overall message is that agricultural weather information is crucial and that every effort should be made to generate what is needed and then to disseminate it in a timely and preferred manner.

  18. Perceptions of Vocational Agriculture Instructors Regarding Knowledge and Importance of Including Selected Agricultural Mechanics Units in the Vocational Agriculture Program.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Heimgartner, Dale C.; Foster, Richard M.

    1981-01-01

    A survey of teachers in five northwestern states revealed that respondents in all states rated the units of arc welding and oxyacetylene welding as the most important units to be included in secondary vocational agriculture programs. (LRA)

  19. Exploring the evolutionary ecology of fungal endophytes in agricultural systems: using functional traits to reveal mechanisms in community processes

    PubMed Central

    Saunders, Megan; Glenn, Anthony E; Kohn, Linda M

    2010-01-01

    All plants, including crop species, harbor a community of fungal endophyte species, yet we know little about the biotic factors that are important in endophyte community assembly. We suggest that the most direct route to understanding the mechanisms underlying community assembly is through the study of functional trait variation in the host and its fungal consortium. We review studies on crop endophytes that investigate plant and fungal traits likely to be important in endophyte community processes. We focus on approaches that could speed detection of general trends in endophyte community assembly: (i) use of the ‘assembly rules’ concept to identify specific mechanisms that influence endophyte community dynamics, (ii) measurement of functional trait variation in plants and fungi to better understand endophyte community processes and plant–fungal interactions, and (iii) investigation of microbe–microbe interactions, and fungal traits that mediate them. This approach is well suited for research in agricultural systems, where pair-wise host–fungus interactions and mechanisms of fungal–fungal competition have frequently been described. Areas for consideration include the possibility that human manipulation of crop phenotype and deployment of fungal biocontrol species can significantly influence endophyte community assembly. Evaluation of endophyte assembly rules may help to fine-tune crop management strategies. PMID:25567944

  20. Challenges of modifying root traits in crops for agriculture.

    PubMed

    Meister, Robert; Rajani, M S; Ruzicka, Daniel; Schachtman, Daniel P

    2014-12-01

    Roots play an essential role in the acquisition of water and minerals from soils. Measuring crop root architecture and assaying for changes in function can be challenging, but examples have emerged showing that modifications to roots result in higher yield and increased stress tolerance. In this review, we focus mainly on the molecular genetic advances that have been made in altering root system architecture and function in crop plants, as well as phenotyping methods. The future for the modification of crop plant roots looks promising based on recent advances, but there are also important challenges ahead. PMID:25239776

  1. Quantitative trait loci affecting oil content, oil composition, and other agronomically important traits in Oat (Avena sativa L.)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Groat oil content and composition are important determinants of oat quality. We investigated these traits in a population of 146 recombinant inbred lines from a cross between 'Dal' (high oil) and 'Exeter' (low oil). A linkage map consisting of 475 DArT markers spanning 1271.8 cM across 40 linkage gr...

  2. Systems Biology for Smart Crops and Agricultural Innovation: Filling the Gaps between Genotype and Phenotype for Complex Traits Linked with Robust Agricultural Productivity and Sustainability.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Anil; Pathak, Rajesh Kumar; Gupta, Sanjay Mohan; Gaur, Vikram Singh; Pandey, Dinesh

    2015-10-01

    In recent years, rapid developments in several omics platforms and next generation sequencing technology have generated a huge amount of biological data about plants. Systems biology aims to develop and use well-organized and efficient algorithms, data structure, visualization, and communication tools for the integration of these biological data with the goal of computational modeling and simulation. It studies crop plant systems by systematically perturbing them, checking the gene, protein, and informational pathway responses; integrating these data; and finally, formulating mathematical models that describe the structure of system and its response to individual perturbations. Consequently, systems biology approaches, such as integrative and predictive ones, hold immense potential in understanding of molecular mechanism of agriculturally important complex traits linked to agricultural productivity. This has led to identification of some key genes and proteins involved in networks of pathways involved in input use efficiency, biotic and abiotic stress resistance, photosynthesis efficiency, root, stem and leaf architecture, and nutrient mobilization. The developments in the above fields have made it possible to design smart crops with superior agronomic traits through genetic manipulation of key candidate genes. PMID:26484978

  3. Testing the lexical hypothesis: are socially important traits more densely reflected in the English lexicon?

    PubMed

    Wood, Dustin

    2015-02-01

    Using a set of 498 English words identified by Saucier (1997) as common person-descriptor adjectives or trait terms, I tested 3 instantiations of the lexical hypothesis, which posit that more socially important person descriptors show greater density in the lexicon. Specifically, I explored whether trait terms that have greater relational impact (i.e., more greatly influence how others respond to a person) have more synonyms, are more frequently used, and are more strongly correlated with other trait terms. I found little evidence to suggest that trait terms rated as having greater relational impact were more frequently used or had more synonyms. However, these terms correlated more strongly with other trait terms in the set. Conversely, a trait term's loadings on structural factors (e.g., the Big Five, HEXACO) were extremely good predictors of the term's relational impact. The findings suggest that the lexical hypothesis may not be strongly supported in some ways it is commonly understood but is supported in the manner most important to investigations of trait structure. Specifically, trait terms with greater relational impact tend to more strongly correlate with other terms in lexical sets and thus have a greater role in driving the location of factors in analyses of trait structure. Implications for understanding the meaning of lexical factors such as the Big Five are discussed. PMID:25603378

  4. Importance of Animals in Agricultural Sustainability and Food Security.

    PubMed

    Reynolds, Lawrence P; Wulster-Radcliffe, Meghan C; Aaron, Debra K; Davis, Teresa A

    2015-07-01

    A conservative projection shows the world's population growing by 32% (to 9.5 billion) by 2050 and 53% (to 11 billion) by 2100 compared with its current level of 7.2 billion. Because most arable land worldwide is already in use, and water and energy also are limiting, increased production of food will require a substantial increase in efficiency. In this article, we highlight the importance of animals to achieving food security in terms of their valuable contributions to agricultural sustainability, especially in developing countries, and the high nutritional value of animal products in the diet. PMID:25972529

  5. The Importance of Juvenile Root Traits for Crop Yields

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    White, Philip; Adu, Michael; Broadley, Martin; Brown, Lawrie; Dupuy, Lionel; George, Timothy; Graham, Neil; Hammond, John; Hayden, Rory; Neugebauer, Konrad; Nightingale, Mark; Ramsay, Gavin; Thomas, Catherine; Thompson, Jacqueline; Wishart, Jane; Wright, Gladys

    2014-05-01

    Genetic variation in root system architecture (RSA) is an under-exploited breeding resource. This is partly a consequence of difficulties in the rapid and accurate assessment of subterranean root systems. However, although the characterisation of root systems of large plants in the field are both time-consuming and labour-intensive, high-throughput (HTP) screens of root systems of juvenile plants can be performed in the field, glasshouse or laboratory. It is hypothesised that improving the root systems of juvenile plants can accelerate access to water and essential mineral elements, leading to rapid crop establishment and, consequently, greater yields. This presentation will illustrate how aspects of the juvenile root systems of potato (Solanum tuberosum L.) and oilseed rape (OSR; Brassica napus L.) correlate with crop yields and examine the reasons for such correlations. It will first describe the significant positive relationships between early root system development, phosphorus acquisition, canopy establishment and eventual yield among potato genotypes. It will report the development of a glasshouse assay for root system architecture (RSA) of juvenile potato plants, the correlations between root system architectures measured in the glasshouse and field, and the relationships between aspects of the juvenile root system and crop yields under drought conditions. It will then describe the development of HTP systems for assaying RSA of OSR seedlings, the identification of genetic loci affecting RSA in OSR, the development of mathematical models describing resource acquisition by OSR, and the correlations between root traits recorded in the HTP systems and yields of OSR in the field.

  6. APPLICATION OF GENOMICS TO IDENTIFY GENES INFLUENCING ECONOMICALLY IMPORTANT TRAITS IN ANIMALS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This review focuses on identification of bovine chromosomal regions where genes influencing economically important traits reside. Regions where these genes reside are located throughout all chromosomes. Discussion focuses on methodology used to detect regions associated with meat tenderness. Mark...

  7. Agricultural Land Use Determines the Trait Composition of Ground Beetle Communities

    PubMed Central

    Birkhofer, Klaus; Smith, Henrik G.; Hedlund, Katarina

    2016-01-01

    In order to improve biological control of agricultural pests, it is fundamental to understand which factors influence the composition of natural enemies in agricultural landscapes. In this study, we aimed to understand how agricultural land use affects a number of different traits in ground beetle communities to better predict potential consequences of land-use change for ecosystem functioning. We studied ground beetles in fields with different agricultural land use ranging from frequently managed sugar beet fields, winter wheat fields to less intensively managed grasslands. The ground beetles were collected in emergence tents that catch individuals overwintering locally in different life stages and with pitfall traps that catch individuals that could have a local origin or may have dispersed into the field. Community weighted mean values for ground beetle traits such as body size, flight ability and feeding preference were estimated for each land-use type and sampling method. In fields with high land-use intensity the average body length of emerging ground beetle communities was lower than in the grasslands while the average body length of actively moving communities did not differ between the land-use types. The proportion of ground beetles with good flight ability or a carnivorous diet was higher in the crop fields as compared to the grasslands. Our study highlights that increasing management intensity reduces the average body size of emerging ground beetles and the proportion of mixed feeders. Our results also suggest that the dispersal ability of ground beetles enables them to compensate for local management intensities. PMID:26730734

  8. Agricultural Land Use Determines the Trait Composition of Ground Beetle Communities.

    PubMed

    Hanson, Helena I; Palmu, Erkki; Birkhofer, Klaus; Smith, Henrik G; Hedlund, Katarina

    2016-01-01

    In order to improve biological control of agricultural pests, it is fundamental to understand which factors influence the composition of natural enemies in agricultural landscapes. In this study, we aimed to understand how agricultural land use affects a number of different traits in ground beetle communities to better predict potential consequences of land-use change for ecosystem functioning. We studied ground beetles in fields with different agricultural land use ranging from frequently managed sugar beet fields, winter wheat fields to less intensively managed grasslands. The ground beetles were collected in emergence tents that catch individuals overwintering locally in different life stages and with pitfall traps that catch individuals that could have a local origin or may have dispersed into the field. Community weighted mean values for ground beetle traits such as body size, flight ability and feeding preference were estimated for each land-use type and sampling method. In fields with high land-use intensity the average body length of emerging ground beetle communities was lower than in the grasslands while the average body length of actively moving communities did not differ between the land-use types. The proportion of ground beetles with good flight ability or a carnivorous diet was higher in the crop fields as compared to the grasslands. Our study highlights that increasing management intensity reduces the average body size of emerging ground beetles and the proportion of mixed feeders. Our results also suggest that the dispersal ability of ground beetles enables them to compensate for local management intensities. PMID:26730734

  9. Relationships Among Ecologically Important Dimensions of Plant Trait Variation in Seven Neotropical Forests

    PubMed Central

    Wright, Ian J.; Ackerly, David D.; Bongers, Frans; Harms, Kyle E.; Ibarra-Manriquez, Guillermo; Martinez-Ramos, Miguel; Mazer, Susan J.; Muller-Landau, Helene C.; Paz, Horacio; Pitman, Nigel C. A.; Poorter, Lourens; Silman, Miles R.; Vriesendorp, Corine F.; Webb, Cam O.; Westoby, Mark; Wright, S. Joseph

    2007-01-01

    Background and Aims When ecologically important plant traits are correlated they may be said to constitute an ecological strategy dimension. Through identifying these dimensions and understanding their inter-relationships we gain insight into why particular trait combinations are favoured over others and into the implications of trait differences among species. Here we investigated relationships among several traits, and thus the strategy dimensions they represented, across 2134 woody species from seven Neotropical forests. Methods Six traits were studied: specific leaf area (SLA), the average size of leaves, seed and fruit, typical maximum plant height, and wood density (WD). Trait relationships were quantified across species at each individual forest as well as across the dataset as a whole. Phylogenetic analyses were used to test for correlations among evolutionary trait-divergences and to ascertain whether interspecific relationships were biased by strong taxonomic patterning in the traits. Key Results The interspecific and phylogenetic analyses yielded congruent results. Seed and fruit size were expected, and confirmed, to be tightly related. As expected, plant height was correlated with each of seed and fruit size, albeit weakly. Weak support was found for an expected positive relationship between leaf and fruit size. The prediction that SLA and WD would be negatively correlated was not supported. Otherwise the traits were predicted to be largely unrelated, being representatives of putatively independent strategy dimensions. This was indeed the case, although WD was consistently, negatively related to leaf size. Conclusions The dimensions represented by SLA, seed/fruit size and leaf size were essentially independent and thus conveyed largely independent information about plant strategies. To a lesser extent the same was true for plant height and WD. Our tentative explanation for negative WDleaf size relationships, now also known from other habitats, is that the traits are indirectly linked via plant hydraulics. PMID:16595553

  10. The importance of retaining a phylogenetic perspective in traits-based community analyses

    SciTech Connect

    Poteat, Monica D; Buchwalter, David; Jacobus, Luke

    2015-01-01

    1) Many environmental stressors manifest their effects via physiological processes (traits) that can differ significantly among species and species groups. We compiled available data for three traits related to the bioconcentration of the toxic metal cadmium (Cd) from 42 aquatic insect species representing orders Ephemeroptera (mayfly), Plecoptera (stonefly), and Trichoptera (caddisfly). These traits included the propensity to take up Cd from water (uptake rate constant, ku), the ability to excrete Cd (efflux rate constant, ke), and the net result of these two processes (bioconcentration factor, BCF). 2) Ranges in these Cd bioaccumulation traits varied in magnitude across lineages (some lineages had a greater tendency to bioaccumulate Cd than others). Overlap in the ranges of trait values among different lineages was common and highlights situations where species from different lineages can share a similar trait state, but represent the high end of possible physiological values for one lineage and the low end for another. 3) Variance around the mean trait state differed widely across clades, suggesting that some groups (e.g., Ephemerellidae) are inherently more variable than others (e.g., Perlidae). Thus, trait variability/lability is at least partially a function of lineage. 4) Akaike information criterion (AIC) comparisons of statistical models were more often driven by clade than by other potential biological or ecological explanation tested. Clade-driven models generally improved with increasing taxonomic resolution. 5) Together, these findings suggest that lineage provides context for the analysis of species traits, and that failure to consider lineage in community-based analysis of traits may obscure important patterns of species responses to environmental change.

  11. Evaluating Functional Diversity: Missing Trait Data and the Importance of Species Abundance Structure and Data Transformation

    PubMed Central

    Bryndová, Michala; Kasari, Liis; Norberg, Anna; Weiss, Matthias; Bishop, Tom R.; Luke, Sarah H.; Sam, Katerina; Le Bagousse-Pinguet, Yoann; Lepš, Jan; Götzenberger, Lars; de Bello, Francesco

    2016-01-01

    Functional diversity (FD) is an important component of biodiversity that quantifies the difference in functional traits between organisms. However, FD studies are often limited by the availability of trait data and FD indices are sensitive to data gaps. The distribution of species abundance and trait data, and its transformation, may further affect the accuracy of indices when data is incomplete. Using an existing approach, we simulated the effects of missing trait data by gradually removing data from a plant, an ant and a bird community dataset (12, 59, and 8 plots containing 62, 297 and 238 species respectively). We ranked plots by FD values calculated from full datasets and then from our increasingly incomplete datasets and compared the ranking between the original and virtually reduced datasets to assess the accuracy of FD indices when used on datasets with increasingly missing data. Finally, we tested the accuracy of FD indices with and without data transformation, and the effect of missing trait data per plot or per the whole pool of species. FD indices became less accurate as the amount of missing data increased, with the loss of accuracy depending on the index. But, where transformation improved the normality of the trait data, FD values from incomplete datasets were more accurate than before transformation. The distribution of data and its transformation are therefore as important as data completeness and can even mitigate the effect of missing data. Since the effect of missing trait values pool-wise or plot-wise depends on the data distribution, the method should be decided case by case. Data distribution and data transformation should be given more careful consideration when designing, analysing and interpreting FD studies, especially where trait data are missing. To this end, we provide the R package “traitor” to facilitate assessments of missing trait data. PMID:26881747

  12. Evaluating Functional Diversity: Missing Trait Data and the Importance of Species Abundance Structure and Data Transformation.

    PubMed

    Mjekov, Maria; Paal, Taavi; Plowman, Nichola S; Bryndov, Michala; Kasari, Liis; Norberg, Anna; Weiss, Matthias; Bishop, Tom R; Luke, Sarah H; Sam, Katerina; Le Bagousse-Pinguet, Yoann; Lep, Jan; Gtzenberger, Lars; de Bello, Francesco

    2016-01-01

    Functional diversity (FD) is an important component of biodiversity that quantifies the difference in functional traits between organisms. However, FD studies are often limited by the availability of trait data and FD indices are sensitive to data gaps. The distribution of species abundance and trait data, and its transformation, may further affect the accuracy of indices when data is incomplete. Using an existing approach, we simulated the effects of missing trait data by gradually removing data from a plant, an ant and a bird community dataset (12, 59, and 8 plots containing 62, 297 and 238 species respectively). We ranked plots by FD values calculated from full datasets and then from our increasingly incomplete datasets and compared the ranking between the original and virtually reduced datasets to assess the accuracy of FD indices when used on datasets with increasingly missing data. Finally, we tested the accuracy of FD indices with and without data transformation, and the effect of missing trait data per plot or per the whole pool of species. FD indices became less accurate as the amount of missing data increased, with the loss of accuracy depending on the index. But, where transformation improved the normality of the trait data, FD values from incomplete datasets were more accurate than before transformation. The distribution of data and its transformation are therefore as important as data completeness and can even mitigate the effect of missing data. Since the effect of missing trait values pool-wise or plot-wise depends on the data distribution, the method should be decided case by case. Data distribution and data transformation should be given more careful consideration when designing, analysing and interpreting FD studies, especially where trait data are missing. To this end, we provide the R package "traitor" to facilitate assessments of missing trait data. PMID:26881747

  13. Elucidating the Effects of Cortisol and Stress on Economically Important Traits in Channel Catfish

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Channel catfish (Ictalurus punctatus) are an important aquaculture species in the United States and have received considerable research attention in efforts to improve production. Three traits of considerable importance to the Farm-Raised Catfish industry are disease resistance, growth, and reproduc...

  14. Extending the Trait-State-Occasion Model: How Important Is Within-Wave Measurement Equivalence?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ciesla, Jeffrey A.; Cole, David A.; Steiger, James H.

    2007-01-01

    Trait-State-Occasion (TSO) covariance models represent an important advance in methods for studying the longitudinal stability of latent constructs. Such models have only been examined under fairly restricted conditions (e.g., having only 2 tau-equivalent indicators per wave). In this study, Monte Carlo simulations revealed the effects of having 2

  15. The Importance of Species Traits for Species Distribution on Oceanic Islands

    PubMed Central

    Vaza?ov, Kristna; Mnzbergov, Zuzana

    2014-01-01

    Understanding species' ability to colonize new habitats is a key knowledge allowing us to predict species' survival in the changing landscapes. However, most studies exploring this topic observe distribution of species in landscapes which are under strong human influence being fragmented only recently and ignore the fact that the species distribution in these landscapes is far from equilibrium. Oceanic islands seem more appropriate systems for studying the relationship between species traits and its distribution as they are fragmented without human contribution and as they remained unchanged for a long evolutionary time. In our study we compared the values of dispersal as well as persistence traits among 18 species pairs from the Canary Islands differing in their distribution within the archipelago. The data were analyzed both with and without phylogenetic correction. The results demonstrate that no dispersal trait alone can explain the distribution of the species in the system. They, however, also suggest that species with better dispersal compared to their close relatives are better colonizers. Similarly, abundance of species in the archipelago seems to be an important predictor of species colonization ability only when comparing closely related species. This implies that analyses including phylogenetic correction may provide different insights than analyses without such a correction and both types of analyses should be combined to understand the importance of various plant traits for species colonization ability. PMID:25003737

  16. Assortative mating in poison-dart frogs based on an ecologically important trait.

    PubMed

    Reynolds, R Graham; Fitzpatrick, Benjamin M

    2007-09-01

    The origin of new species can be influenced by both deterministic and stochastic factors. Mate choice and natural selection may be important deterministic causes of speciation (as opposed to the essentially stochastic factors of geographic isolation and genetic drift). Theoretical models predict that speciation is more likely when mate choice depends on an ecologically important trait that is subject to divergent natural selection, although many authors have considered such mating/ecology pleiotropy, or "magic-traits" to be unlikely. However, phenotypic signals are important in both mate choice and ecological processes such as avoiding predation. In chemically defended species, it may be that the phenotypic characteristics influencing mate choice are the same signals being used to transmit a warning to potential predators, although few studies have demonstrated this in wild populations. We tested for assortative mating between two color morphs of the Strawberry Poison-Dart Frog, Dendrobates pumilio, a group with striking geographic variation in aposematic color patterns. We found that females significantly prefer individuals of their own morph under two different light treatments, indicating strong assortative mating based on multiple coloration cues that are also important ecological signals. This study provides a rare example of one phenotypic trait affecting both ecological viability and nonrandom mating, indicating that mating/ecology pleiotropy is plausible in wild populations, particularly for organisms that are aposematically colored and visually orienting. PMID:17767594

  17. Variation in heading date conceals quantitative trait loci for other traits of importance in breeding selection of rice

    PubMed Central

    Hori, Kiyosumi; Kataoka, Tomomori; Miura, Kiyoyuki; Yamaguchi, Masayuki; Saka, Norikuni; Nakahara, Takahiro; Sunohara, Yoshihiro; Ebana, Kaworu; Yano, Masahiro

    2012-01-01

    To identify quantitative trait loci (QTLs) associated with the primary target traits for selection in practical rice breeding programs, backcross inbred lines (BILs) derived from crosses between temperate japonica rice cultivars Nipponbare and Koshihikari were evaluated for 50 agronomic traits at six experimental fields located throughout Japan. Thirty-three of the 50 traits were significantly correlated with heading date. Using a linkage map including 647 single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), a total of 122 QTLs for 38 traits were mapped on all rice chromosomes except chromosomes 5 and 9. Fifty-eight of the 122 QTLs were detected near the heading date QTLs Hd16 and Hd17 and the remaining 64 QTLs were found in other chromosome regions. QTL analysis of 51 BILs having homozygous for the Koshihikari chromosome segments around Hd16 and Hd17 allowed us to detect 40 QTLs associated with 27 traits; 23 of these QTLs had not been detected in the original analysis. Among the 97 QTLs for the 30 traits measured in multiple environments, the genotype-by-environment interaction was significant for 44 QTLs and not significant for 53 QTLs. These results led us to propose a new selection strategy to improve agronomic performance in temperate japonica rice cultivars. PMID:23226082

  18. The Relative Importance of Psychopathy-Related Traits in Predicting Impersonal Sex and Hostile Masculinity

    PubMed Central

    LeBreton, James M.; Baysinger, Michael; Abbey, Antonia; Jacques-Tiura, Angela J.

    2013-01-01

    This paper reports the relative contributions of several facets of subclinical psychopathy (i.e., callous affect, erratic lifestyle, interpersonal manipulation), subclinical narcissism (i.e., entitlement, exploitation), and trait aggression (i.e., anger) to the prediction of four enduring attitudes towards women and sexual assault (i.e., hostility towards women, negative attitudes regarding women, sexual dominance, impersonal sex) and a behavioral indicator of an impersonal sexual behavior (i.e., number of one-night stands). Survey data were collected from 470 single men living in the Detroit Metropolitan area. The importance of personality traits varied as a function of the outcome with anger most predictive of hostility toward women; erratic lifestyle most predictive of impersonal sexual attitudes and behavior, and entitlement most predictive of sexual dominance and negative attitudes toward women. These outcome-specific findings are interpreted and directions for future research are discussed. PMID:26082565

  19. Population structure and association mapping studies for important agronomic traits in soybean.

    PubMed

    Kumar, Bhupender; Talukdar, Akshay; Bala, Indu; Verma, Khushbu; Lal, Sanjay Kumar; Sapra, Ramesh Lal; Namita, B; Chander, Subhash; Tiwari, Reshu

    2014-12-01

    The present study was carried out with a set of 96 diverse soybean genotypes with the objectives of analysing the population structure and to identify molecular markers associated with important agronomic traits. Large phenotypic variability was observed for the agronomic traits under study indicating suitability of the genotypes for association studies. The maximum values for plant height, pods per plant, seeds per pod, 100-seed weight and seed yield per plant were approximately two and half to three times more than the minimum values for the genotypes. Seed yield per plant was found to be significantly correlated with pods per plant (r = 0.77), 100-seed weight (r = 0.35) and days to maturity (r = 0.23). The population structure studies depicted the presence of seven subpopulations which nearly corresponded with the source of geographical origin of the genotypes. Linkage disequilibrium (LD) between the linked markers decreased with the increased distance, and a substantial drop in LD decay values was observed between 30 and 35 cM. Genomewide marker-traits association analysis carried out using general linear (GLM) and mixed linear models (MLM) identified six genomic regions (two of them were common in both) on chromosomes 6, 7, 8, 13, 15 and 17, which were found to be significantly associated with various important traits viz., plant height, pods per plant, 100-seed weight, plant growth habit, average number of seeds per pod, days to 50% flowering and days to maturity. The phenotypic variation explained by these loci ranged from 6.09 to 13.18% and 4.25 to 9.01% in the GLM and MLM studies, respectively. In conclusion, association mapping (AM) in soybean could be a viable alternative to conventional QTL mapping approach. PMID:25572236

  20. Biodiversity of Aspergillus Species in Some Important Agricultural Products

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The genus Aspergillus is one of the most important filamentous fungal genera. Aspergillus species are used in the fermentation industry, but they are also responsible of various plant and food secondary rot, with the consequence of possible accumulation of mycotoxins. The aflatoxin-producing A. fl...

  1. Genetic Linkage Mapping of Economically Important Traits in Cultivated Tetraploid Potato (Solanum tuberosum L.)

    PubMed Central

    Massa, Alicia N.; Manrique-Carpintero, Norma C.; Coombs, Joseph J.; Zarka, Daniel G.; Boone, Anne E.; Kirk, William W.; Hackett, Christine A.; Bryan, Glenn J.; Douches, David S.

    2015-01-01

    The objective of this study was to construct a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP)-based genetic map at the cultivated tetraploid level to locate quantitative trait loci (QTL) contributing to economically important traits in potato (Solanum tuberosum L.). The 156 F1 progeny and parents of a cross (MSL603) between “Jacqueline Lee” and “MSG227-2” were genotyped using the Infinium 8303 Potato Array. Furthermore, the progeny and parents were evaluated for foliar late blight reaction to isolates of the US-8 genotype of Phytophthora infestans (Mont.) de Bary and vine maturity. Linkage analyses and QTL mapping were performed using a novel approach that incorporates allele dosage information. The resulting genetic maps contained 1972 SNP markers with an average density of 1.36 marker per cM. QTL mapping identified the major source of late blight resistance in “Jacqueline Lee.” The best SNP marker mapped ∼0.54 Mb from a resistance hotspot on the long arm of chromosome 9. For vine maturity, the major-effect QTL was located on chromosome 5 with allelic effects from both parents. A candidate SNP marker for this trait mapped ∼0.25 Mb from the StCDF1 gene, which is a candidate gene for the maturity trait. The identification of markers for P. infestans resistance will enable the introgression of multiple sources of resistance through marker-assisted selection. Moreover, the discovery of a QTL for late blight resistance not linked to the QTL for vine maturity provides the opportunity to use marker-assisted selection for resistance independent of the selection for vine maturity classifications. PMID:26374597

  2. Genetic Linkage Mapping of Economically Important Traits in Cultivated Tetraploid Potato (Solanum tuberosum L.).

    PubMed

    Massa, Alicia N; Manrique-Carpintero, Norma C; Coombs, Joseph J; Zarka, Daniel G; Boone, Anne E; Kirk, William W; Hackett, Christine A; Bryan, Glenn J; Douches, David S

    2015-11-01

    The objective of this study was to construct a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP)-based genetic map at the cultivated tetraploid level to locate quantitative trait loci (QTL) contributing to economically important traits in potato (Solanum tuberosum L.). The 156 F1 progeny and parents of a cross (MSL603) between "Jacqueline Lee" and "MSG227-2" were genotyped using the Infinium 8303 Potato Array. Furthermore, the progeny and parents were evaluated for foliar late blight reaction to isolates of the US-8 genotype of Phytophthora infestans (Mont.) de Bary and vine maturity. Linkage analyses and QTL mapping were performed using a novel approach that incorporates allele dosage information. The resulting genetic maps contained 1972 SNP markers with an average density of 1.36 marker per cM. QTL mapping identified the major source of late blight resistance in "Jacqueline Lee." The best SNP marker mapped ~0.54 Mb from a resistance hotspot on the long arm of chromosome 9. For vine maturity, the major-effect QTL was located on chromosome 5 with allelic effects from both parents. A candidate SNP marker for this trait mapped ~0.25 Mb from the StCDF1 gene, which is a candidate gene for the maturity trait. The identification of markers for P. infestans resistance will enable the introgression of multiple sources of resistance through marker-assisted selection. Moreover, the discovery of a QTL for late blight resistance not linked to the QTL for vine maturity provides the opportunity to use marker-assisted selection for resistance independent of the selection for vine maturity classifications. PMID:26374597

  3. Localization of quantitative trait loci for diapause and other photoperiodically regulated life history traits important in adaptation to seasonally varying environments.

    PubMed

    Tyukmaeva, Venera I; Veltsos, Paris; Slate, Jon; Gregson, Emma; Kauranen, Hannele; Kankare, Maaria; Ritchie, Michael G; Butlin, Roger K; Hoikkala, Anneli

    2015-06-01

    Seasonally changing environments at high latitudes present great challenges for the reproduction and survival of insects, and photoperiodic cues play an important role in helping them to synchronize their life cycle with prevalent and forthcoming conditions. We have mapped quantitative trait loci (QTL) responsible for the photoperiodic regulation of four life history traits, female reproductive diapause, cold tolerance, egg-to-eclosion development time and juvenile body weight in Drosophila montana strains from different latitudes in Canada and Finland. The F2 progeny of the cross was reared under a single photoperiod (LD cycle 16:8), which the flies from the Canadian population interpret as early summer and the flies from the Finnish population as late summer. The analysis revealed a unique QTL for diapause induction on the X chromosome and several QTL for this and the other measured traits on the 4th chromosome. Flies' cold tolerance, egg-to-eclosion development time and juvenile body weight had several QTL also on the 2nd, 3rd and 5th chromosome, some of the peaks overlapping with each other. These results suggest that while the downstream output of females' photoperiodic diapause response is partly under a different genetic control from that of the other traits in the given day length, all traits also share some QTL, possibly involving genes with pleiotropic effects and/or multiple tightly linked genes. Nonoverlapping QTL detected for some of the traits also suggest that the traits are potentially capable of independent evolution, even though this may be restricted by epistatic interactions and/or correlations and trade-offs between the traits. PMID:25877951

  4. Dicer-like 3 produces transposable element-associated 24-nt siRNAs that control agricultural traits in rice

    PubMed Central

    Wei, Liya; Gu, Lianfeng; Song, Xianwei; Cui, Xiekui; Lu, Zhike; Zhou, Ming; Wang, Lulu; Hu, Fengyi; Zhai, Jixian; Meyers, Blake C.; Cao, Xiaofeng

    2014-01-01

    Transposable elements (TEs) and repetitive sequences make up over 35% of the rice (Oryza sativa) genome. The host regulates the activity of different TEs by different epigenetic mechanisms, including DNA methylation, histone H3K9 methylation, and histone H3K4 demethylation. TEs can also affect the expression of host genes. For example, miniature inverted repeat TEs (MITEs), dispersed high copy-number DNA TEs, can influence the expression of nearby genes. In plants, 24-nt small interfering RNAs (siRNAs) are mainly derived from repeats and TEs. However, the extent to which TEs, particularly MITEs associated with 24-nt siRNAs, affect gene expression remains elusive. Here, we show that the rice Dicer-like 3 homolog OsDCL3a is primarily responsible for 24-nt siRNA processing. Impairing OsDCL3a expression by RNA interference caused phenotypes affecting important agricultural traits; these phenotypes include dwarfism, larger flag leaf angle, and fewer secondary branches. We used small RNA deep sequencing to identify 535,054 24-nt siRNA clusters. Of these clusters, ∼82% were OsDCL3a-dependent and showed significant enrichment of MITEs. Reduction of OsDCL3a function reduced the 24-nt siRNAs predominantly from MITEs and elevated expression of nearby genes. OsDCL3a directly targets genes involved in gibberellin and brassinosteroid homeostasis; OsDCL3a deficiency may affect these genes, thus causing the phenotypes of dwarfism and enlarged flag leaf angle. Our work identifies OsDCL3a-dependent 24-nt siRNAs derived from MITEs as broadly functioning regulators for fine-tuning gene expression, which may reflect a conserved epigenetic mechanism in higher plants with genomes rich in dispersed repeats or TEs. PMID:24554078

  5. Facultative symbionts in aphids and the horizontal transfer of ecologically important traits.

    PubMed

    Oliver, Kerry M; Degnan, Patrick H; Burke, Gaelen R; Moran, Nancy A

    2010-01-01

    Aphids engage in symbiotic associations with a diverse assemblage of heritable bacteria. In addition to their obligate nutrient-provisioning symbiont, Buchnera aphidicola, aphids may also carry one or more facultative symbionts. Unlike obligate symbionts, facultative symbionts are not generally required for survival or reproduction and can invade novel hosts, based on both phylogenetic analyses and transfection experiments. Facultative symbionts are mutualistic in the context of various ecological interactions. Experiments on pea aphids (Acyrthosiphon pisum) have demonstrated that facultative symbionts protect against entomopathogenic fungi and parasitoid wasps, ameliorate the detrimental effects of heat, and influence host plant suitability. The protective symbiont, Hamiltonella defensa, has a dynamic genome, exhibiting evidence of recombination, phage-mediated gene uptake, and horizontal gene transfer and containing virulence and toxin-encoding genes. Although transmitted maternally with high fidelity, facultative symbionts occasionally move horizontally within and between species, resulting in the instantaneous acquisition of ecologically important traits, such as parasitoid defense. PMID:19728837

  6. Selected historic agricultural data important to environmental quality in the United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Grey, Katia M.; Capel, Paul D.; Baker, Nancy T.; Thelin, Gail P.

    2012-01-01

    This report and the accompanying tables summarize some of the important changes in American agriculture in the form of a timeline and a compilation of selected annual time-series data that can be broadly related to environmental quality. Although these changes have been beneficial for increasing agricultural production, some of them have resulted in environmental concerns. The agriculture timeline is divided into four categories (1) crop and animal changes, (2) mechanical changes, (3) biological and chemical changes, and (4) regulatory and societal changes. The timeline attempts to compile events that have had a lasting impact on agriculture in the United States. The events and data presented in this report may help to improve the connections between agricultural activist and environmental concerns.

  7. Importance and location of instruction for sixty-eight energy competencies for Kansas agriculture

    SciTech Connect

    French, B.T.

    1982-01-01

    The two primary objectives of this study were: to identify which energy competencies had improtance to Kansas agriculture and to determine how appropiate each competency was for three levels of instruction: high school, Area Vocational-Technical School or Community College, or four year college. An energy questionnaire, comprised of 68 competencies, was completed by 140 individuals and provided data to meet the studys primary objectives. Thirty-five returns were recieved from each of four groups: Young Farmers/Young Farm Wives, High School Vo-Ag teachers, Postsecondary AVTS-CC Agricultural teachers, and County Extension Directors. Of the 68 energy competencies, 36 were rated very important, 28 important, and 4 as having some important to Kansas agriculture. All competencies in category six, energy saving technology for farm vehicles, tractors, machinery and crop production, were rated very important. Category six was the highest-rated category importance to Kansas ariculture, and category eleven other alternate energy sources and storage systems was rated the least important. Because energy technology was important to Kansas agriculture it was recommended educational curricula and materials be developed based on the 68 competencies in this study, and be made available to agriculture instructors at all teaching levels.

  8. Neonatal piglet traits of importance for survival in crates and indoor pens.

    PubMed

    Pedersen, L J; Berg, P; Jrgensen, G; Andersen, I L

    2011-04-01

    The primary aim of the present study was to investigate whether the same piglet traits contributed to the same causes of neonatal piglet mortality in crates (CT) and pens (PN). Gilts originating from 2 distinct genetic groups that differed in breeding value for piglet survival rate at d 5 (SR5) were used. These were distributed to farrow in either PN or CT as follows: high-SR5 and CT (n = 30); low-SR5 and CT (n = 27); high-SR5 and PN (n = 22); and low-SR5 and PN (n = 24). Data on individual piglets were collected at birth, including interbirth interval; birth order; birth weight; rectal temperature at birth, 2 h after birth, and 24 h after birth; cordal plasma lactate; and latency to first suckle. Based on autopsy, causes of mortality were divided into stillborn, bitten to death, starvation, crushed, disease, and other causes. Potential risk factors of dying were estimated using a GLM with a logit link function. No significant effect (NS) of housing was observed on the odds of a piglet being stillborn (F(1,73) = 0.1, NS), being crushed (F(1,53) = 1.4, NS), or dying of starvation (F(1,53) = 0.3, NS). No significant differences were observed between the 2 genetic groups for any category of mortality. Piglet traits for pre- and postnatal survival were the same for CT and PN. The odds of being stillborn were increased in piglets born late in the birth order (F(1,1061) = 33.5, P < 0.0001), after a long interbirth interval (F(1,1061) = 19.2, P < 0.0001), and with a lighter birth weight (F(1,1061) = 9.2, P = 0.003). The lighter the birth weight of the piglets, the greater were the odds of being crushed (F(1,1050) = 18, P < 0.0001) and dying of starvation (F(1,1050) = 19, P < 0.0001). The lower the rectal temperature 2 h after birth, the greater were the odds of being crushed (F(1,1050) = 4.6, P = 0.03), starving (F(1,1050) = 16.6, P < 0.0001), or dying of diseases (F(1,1050) = 4.9, P = 0.03). Increased cordal plasma lactate increased the odds of dying from starvation (F(1,1050) = 18, P < 0.0001). In both CT and PN, the birth weight, body temperature 2 h after birth, and birth process were important traits related to crushing, starvation, and disease. Neither housing nor breeding value influenced mortality or traits of importance for the inborn viability of piglets. The results emphasize that the microclimate in the PN for newborn piglets and its heat-preserving properties are more important for survival than whether the sow is crated or penned. PMID:21148785

  9. AN INSECT PEST FOR AGRICULTURAL, URBAN, AND WILDLIFE AREAS: THE RED IMPORTED FIRE ANT

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The Red Imported Fire Ant (RIFA), Solenopsis invicta (Buren), is an insect pest of particular importance in California due to its potential impact on public health, agriculture, and wildlife. In 1997, RIFAs hitchhiked to the Central Valley on honeybee hives brought in from Texas for pollination of a...

  10. Identification of Major and Minor QTL for Ecologically Important Morphological Traits in Three-Spined Sticklebacks (Gasterosteus aculeatus)

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Jun; Shikano, Takahito; Leinonen, Tuomas; Cano, Jos Manuel; Li, Meng-Hua; Meril, Juha

    2014-01-01

    Quantitative trait locus (QTL) mapping studies of Pacific three-spined sticklebacks (Gasterosteus aculeatus) have uncovered several genomic regions controlling variability in different morphological traits, but QTL studies of Atlantic sticklebacks are lacking. We mapped QTL for 40 morphological traits, including body size, body shape, and body armor, in a F2 full-sib cross between northern European marine and freshwater three-spined sticklebacks. A total of 52 significant QTL were identified at the 5% genome-wide level. One major QTL explaining 74.4% of the total variance in lateral plate number was detected on LG4, whereas several major QTL for centroid size (a proxy for body size), and the lengths of two dorsal spines, pelvic spine, and pelvic girdle were mapped on LG21 with the explained variance ranging from 27.9% to 57.6%. Major QTL for landmark coordinates defining body shape variation also were identified on LG21, with each explaining ?15% of variance in body shape. Multiple QTL for different traits mapped on LG21 overlapped each other, implying pleiotropy and/or tight linkage. Thus, apart from providing confirmatory data to support conclusions born out of earlier QTL studies of Pacific sticklebacks, this study also describes several novel QTL of both major and smaller effect for ecologically important traits. The finding that many major QTL mapped on LG21 suggests that this linkage group might be a hotspot for genetic determinants of ecologically important morphological traits in three-spined sticklebacks. PMID:24531726

  11. Identification of major and minor QTL for ecologically important morphological traits in three-spined sticklebacks (Gasterosteus aculeatus).

    PubMed

    Liu, Jun; Shikano, Takahito; Leinonen, Tuomas; Cano, Jos Manuel; Li, Meng-Hua; Meril, Juha

    2014-04-01

    Quantitative trait locus (QTL) mapping studies of Pacific three-spined sticklebacks (Gasterosteus aculeatus) have uncovered several genomic regions controlling variability in different morphological traits, but QTL studies of Atlantic sticklebacks are lacking. We mapped QTL for 40 morphological traits, including body size, body shape, and body armor, in a F2 full-sib cross between northern European marine and freshwater three-spined sticklebacks. A total of 52 significant QTL were identified at the 5% genome-wide level. One major QTL explaining 74.4% of the total variance in lateral plate number was detected on LG4, whereas several major QTL for centroid size (a proxy for body size), and the lengths of two dorsal spines, pelvic spine, and pelvic girdle were mapped on LG21 with the explained variance ranging from 27.9% to 57.6%. Major QTL for landmark coordinates defining body shape variation also were identified on LG21, with each explaining ?15% of variance in body shape. Multiple QTL for different traits mapped on LG21 overlapped each other, implying pleiotropy and/or tight linkage. Thus, apart from providing confirmatory data to support conclusions born out of earlier QTL studies of Pacific sticklebacks, this study also describes several novel QTL of both major and smaller effect for ecologically important traits. The finding that many major QTL mapped on LG21 suggests that this linkage group might be a hotspot for genetic determinants of ecologically important morphological traits in three-spined sticklebacks. PMID:24531726

  12. Association Mapping for Important Agronomic Traits in Core Collection of Rice (Oryza sativa L.) with SSR Markers

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Peng; Liu, Xiangdong; Tong, Hanhua; Lu, Yonggen; Li, Jinquan

    2014-01-01

    Mining elite genes within rice landraces is of importance for the improvement of cultivated rice. An association mapping for 12 agronomic traits was carried out using a core collection of rice consisting of 150 landraces (Panel 1) with 274 simple sequence repeat (SSR) markers, and the mapping results were further verified using a Chinese national rice micro-core collection (Panel 2) and a collection from a global molecular breeding program (Panel 3). Our results showed that (1) 76 significant (P<0.05) trait-marker associations were detected using mixed linear model (MLM) within Panel 1 in two years, among which 32% were identical with previously mapped QTLs, and 11 significant associations had >10% explained ratio of genetic variation; (2) A total of seven aforementioned trait-marker associations were verified within Panel 2 and 3 when using a general linear model (GLM) and 55 SSR markers of the 76 significant trait-marker associations. However, no significant trait-marker association was found to be identical within three panels when using the MLM model; (3) several desirable alleles of the loci which showed significant trait-marker associations were identified. The research provided important information for further mining these elite genes within rice landraces and using them for rice breeding. PMID:25360796

  13. Assessing the Importance of Intraspecific Variability in Dung Beetle Functional Traits

    PubMed Central

    Griffiths, Hannah M.; Louzada, Julio; Bardgett, Richard D.; Barlow, Jos

    2016-01-01

    Functional diversity indices are used to facilitate a mechanistic understanding of many theoretical and applied questions in current ecological research. The use of mean trait values in functional indices assumes that traits are robust, in that greater variability exists between than within species. While the assertion of robust traits has been explored in plants, there exists little information on the source and extent of variability in the functional traits of higher trophic level organisms. Here we investigated variability in two functionally relevant dung beetle traits, measured from individuals collected from three primary forest sites containing distinct beetle communities: body mass and back leg length. In doing so we too addressed the following questions: (i) what is the contribution of intra vs. interspecific differences in trait values; (ii) what sample size is needed to provide representative species mean trait values; and (iii) what impact does omission of intraspecific trait information have on the calculation of functional diversity (FD) indices from naturally assembled communities? At the population level, interspecific differences explained the majority of variability in measured traits (between 94% and 96%). In accordance with this, the error associated with calculating FD without inclusion of intraspecific variability was low, less than 20% in all cases. This suggests that complete sampling to capture intraspecific variance in traits is not necessary even when investigating the FD of small and/or naturally formed communities. To gain an accurate estimation of species mean trait values we encourage the measurement of 30–60 individuals and, where possible, these should be taken from specimens collected from the site of study. PMID:26939121

  14. Discovery of novel genetic networks associated with 19 economically important traits in beef cattle

    PubMed Central

    Jiang, Zhihua; Michal, Jennifer J.; Chen, Jie; Daniels, Tyler F.; Kunej, Tanja; Garcia, Matthew D.; Gaskins, Charles T.; Busboom, Jan R.; Alexander, Leeson J.; Wright Jr., Raymond W.; MacNeil, Michael D.

    2009-01-01

    Quantitative or complex traits are determined by the combined effects of many loci, and are affected by genetic networks or molecular pathways. In the present study, we genotyped a total of 138 mutations, mainly single nucleotide polymorphisms derived from 71 functional genes on a Wagyu x Limousin reference population. Two hundred forty six F2 animals were measured for 5 carcass, 6 eating quality and 8 fatty acid composition traits. A total of 2,280 single marker-trait association runs with 120 tagged mutations selected based on the HAPLOVIEW analysis revealed 144 significant associations (P < 0.05), but 50 of them were removed from the analysis due to the small number of animals (? 9) in one genotype group or absence of one genotype among three genotypes. The remaining 94 single-trait associations were then placed into three groups of quantitative trait modes (QTMs) with additive, dominant and overdominant effects. All significant markers and their QTMs associated with each of these 19 traits were involved in a linear regression model analysis, which confirmed single-gene associations for 4 traits, but revealed two-gene networks for 8 traits and three-gene networks for 5 traits. Such genetic networks involving both genotypes and QTMs resulted in high correlations between predicted and actual values of performance, thus providing evidence that the classical Mendelian principles of inheritance can be applied in understanding genetic complexity of complex phenotypes. Our present study also indicated that carcass, eating quality and fatty acid composition traits rarely share genetic networks. Therefore, marker-assisted selection for improvement of one category of these traits would not interfere with improvement of another. PMID:19727437

  15. Association mapping of four important traits using the USDA rice mini-core collection

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Classical quantitative trait loci (QTL) mapping in diploids reveals only a slice of the genetic architecture for a trait because only two alleles that differ between the two parental lines segregate. Association mapping provides an effective method to identify QTL that have effects across a broad sp...

  16. The importance of comprehensive agricultural education in land-grant institutions: a historical perspective.

    PubMed

    Grant, P M; Field, T G; Green, R D; Rollin, B E

    2000-06-01

    Any thorough examination of the present and future of agricultural education must certainly begin with a look into its past. Since the creation of the United States, many leading American philosophers have viewed a strong agrarian culture as the bedrock of American vigor. These same philosophers repeatedly noted the significance of comprehensive agricultural education to a nation rich in agricultural wealth. The signing of the Agricultural Colleges Act legitimized the concept of formal education in the agricultural sciences and provided funding for such education. The Act, which came to be known as the Morrill Act, after one of its primary authors, stressed the importance of comprehensive education. In fact, the inclusion of liberal studies was specifically mentioned in the Morrill Act and was defended repeatedly by Morrill himself. Comprehensive education prevented graduating technically trained students who were lacking in the basic outcomes of education--critical, comprehensive problem solving, cohesive thought, and effective communication. However, throughout history, the demands of a growing population coupled with rapid advancements in scientific knowledge led to a gradual move away from comprehensive education in agricultural sciences toward increasing specialization, resulting in more narrowly trained students. Today's agricultural students are technically well versed but often lack the skill and knowledge required for cohesive thought and critical problem solving. Addressing the multitude of challenges facing leaders in the future of agriculture requires much more than technical skill. These challenges require quick, yet careful thinkers and communicators who can respond to changing market structure and consumer demand in a dynamic way. Students who are a product of a conscious move toward amalgamation of burgeoning scientific knowledge and technical prowess with an integrative education emphasizing relationships between disciplines would better serve tomorrow's agriculture. PMID:10875653

  17. Climate change, plant traits, and invasion in natural and agricultural ecosystems

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Invasive species and climate change, each of which is likely to influence agricultural productivity and biological diversity, are also likely to interact. This chapter explores characteristics of both invasive plants and invaded ecosystems to search for generalizations that may allow us to predict w...

  18. QTL mapping and epistatic interaction analysis in asparagus bean for several characterized and novel horticulturally important traits

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Asparagus bean (Vigna. unguiculata. ssp sesquipedalis) is a subspecies and special vegetable type of cowpea (Vigna. unguiculata L. Walp.) important in Asia. Genetic basis of horticulturally important traits of asparagus bean is still poorly understood, hindering the utilization of targeted, DNA marker-assisted breeding in this crop. Here we report the identification of quantitative trait loci (QTLs) and epistatic interactions for four horticultural traits, namely, days to first flowering (FLD), nodes to first flower (NFF), leaf senescence (LS) and pod number per plant (PN) using a recombinant inbred line (RIL) population of asparagus bean. Results A similar genetic mode of one major QTL plus a few minor QTLs was found to dominate each of the four traits, with the number of QTLs for individual traits ranging from three to four. These QTLs were distributed on 7 of the 11 chromosomes. Major QTLs for FLD, NFF and LS were co-localized on LG 11, indicative of tight linkage. Genome wide epistasis analysis detected two and one interactive locus pairs that significantly affect FLD and LS, respectively, and the epistatic QTLs for FLD appeared to work in different ways. Synteny based comparison of QTL locations revealed conservation of chromosome regions controlling these traits in related legume crops. Conclusion Major, minor, and epistatic QTLs were found to contribute to the inheritance of the FLD, NFF, LS, and PN. Positions of many of these QTLs are conserved among closely related legume species, indicating common mechanisms they share. To our best knowledge, this is the first QTL mapping report using an asparagus bean × asparagus bean intervarietal population and provides marker-trait associations for marker-assisted approaches to selection. PMID:23375055

  19. Testing projected wild bee distributions in agricultural habitats: predictive power depends on species traits and habitat type.

    PubMed

    Marshall, Leon; Carvalheiro, Lusa G; Aguirre-Gutirrez, Jess; Bos, Merijn; de Groot, G Arjen; Kleijn, David; Potts, Simon G; Reemer, Menno; Roberts, Stuart; Scheper, Jeroen; Biesmeijer, Jacobus C

    2015-10-01

    Species distribution models (SDM) are increasingly used to understand the factors that regulate variation in biodiversity patterns and to help plan conservation strategies. However, these models are rarely validated with independently collected data and it is unclear whether SDM performance is maintained across distinct habitats and for species with different functional traits. Highly mobile species, such as bees, can be particularly challenging to model. Here, we use independent sets of occurrence data collected systematically in several agricultural habitats to test how the predictive performance of SDMs for wild bee species depends on species traits, habitat type, and sampling technique. We used a species distribution modeling approach parametrized for the Netherlands, with presence records from 1990 to 2010 for 193 Dutch wild bees. For each species, we built a Maxent model based on 13 climate and landscape variables. We tested the predictive performance of the SDMs with independent datasets collected from orchards and arable fields across the Netherlands from 2010 to 2013, using transect surveys or pan traps. Model predictive performance depended on species traits and habitat type. Occurrence of bee species specialized in habitat and diet was better predicted than generalist bees. Predictions of habitat suitability were also more precise for habitats that are temporally more stable (orchards) than for habitats that suffer regular alterations (arable), particularly for small, solitary bees. As a conservation tool, SDMs are best suited to modeling rarer, specialist species than more generalist and will work best in long-term stable habitats. The variability of complex, short-term habitats is difficult to capture in such models and historical land use generally has low thematic resolution. To improve SDMs' usefulness, models require explanatory variables and collection data that include detailed landscape characteristics, for example, variability of crops and flower availability. Additionally, testing SDMs with field surveys should involve multiple collection techniques. PMID:26664689

  20. Simple, rapid, and inexpensive cleanup method for quantitation of aflatoxins in important agricultural products by HPLC

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A simple, fast and cheap chemical cleanup procedure for low-level quantitative determination of aflatoxins in major economically important agricultural commodities using HPLC has been developed. Aflatoxins were extracted from a ground sample with methanol-water (80:20, v/v), and after a cleanup step...

  1. The importance of abovegroundbelowground interactions on the evolution and maintenance of variation in plant defense traits

    PubMed Central

    van Geem, Moniek; Gols, Rieta; van Dam, Nicole M.; van der Putten, Wim H.; Fortuna, Taiadjana; Harvey, Jeffrey A.

    2013-01-01

    Over the past two decades a growing body of empirical research has shown that many ecological processes are mediated by a complex array of indirect interactions occurring between rhizosphere-inhabiting organisms and those found on aboveground plant parts. Abovegroundbelowground studies have thus far focused on elucidating processes and underlying mechanisms that mediate the behavior and performance of invertebrates in opposite ecosystem compartments. Less is known about genetic variation in plant traits such as defense as that may be driven by above- and belowground trophic interactions. For instance, although our understanding of genetic variation in aboveground plant traits and its effects on community-level interactions is well developed, little is known about the importance of abovegroundbelowground interactions in driving this variation. Plant traits may have evolved in response to selection pressures from above- and below-ground interactions from antagonists and mutualists. Here, we discuss gaps in our understanding of genetic variation in plant-related traits as they relate to aboveground and belowground multitrophic interactions. When metabolic resources are limiting, multiple attacks by antagonists in both domains may lead to trade-offs. In nature, these trade-offs may critically depend upon their effects on plant fitness. Natural enemies of herbivores may also influence selection for different traits via topdown control. At larger scales these interactions may generate evolutionary hotspots where the expression of various plant traits is the result of strong reciprocal selection via direct and indirect interactions. The role of abiotic factors in driving genetic variation in plant traits is also discussed. PMID:24348484

  2. An Exploratory Study of the Effect of Professional Internships on Students' Perception of the Importance of Employment Traits

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Green, Brian Patrick; Graybeal, Patricia; Madison, Roland L.

    2011-01-01

    The authors measured the effects of a formal internship on students' perceptions of the importance of traits employees consider during the hiring process. Prior studies have reported that accounting firms perceive students with internship experience as better entry-level accountants. This perception may be related to changes in student beliefs

  3. An Exploratory Study of the Effect of Professional Internships on Students' Perception of the Importance of Employment Traits

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Green, Brian Patrick; Graybeal, Patricia; Madison, Roland L.

    2011-01-01

    The authors measured the effects of a formal internship on students' perceptions of the importance of traits employees consider during the hiring process. Prior studies have reported that accounting firms perceive students with internship experience as better entry-level accountants. This perception may be related to changes in student beliefs…

  4. Research Review: The Importance of Callous-Unemotional Traits for Developmental Models of Aggressive and Antisocial Behavior

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Frick, Paul J.; White, Stuart F.

    2008-01-01

    The current paper reviews research suggesting that the presence of a callous and unemotional interpersonal style designates an important subgroup of antisocial and aggressive youth. Specifically, callous-unemotional (CU) traits (e.g., lack of guilt, absence of empathy, callous use of others) seem to be relatively stable across childhood and

  5. A consensus linkage map for molecular markers and Quantitative Trait Loci associated with economically important traits in melon (Cucumis melo L.)

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background A number of molecular marker linkage maps have been developed for melon (Cucumis melo L.) over the last two decades. However, these maps were constructed using different marker sets, thus, making comparative analysis among maps difficult. In order to solve this problem, a consensus genetic map in melon was constructed using primarily highly transferable anchor markers that have broad potential use for mapping, synteny, and comparative quantitative trait loci (QTL) analysis, increasing breeding effectiveness and efficiency via marker-assisted selection (MAS). Results Under the framework of the International Cucurbit Genomics Initiative (ICuGI, http://www.icugi.org), an integrated genetic map has been constructed by merging data from eight independent mapping experiments using a genetically diverse array of parental lines. The consensus map spans 1150 cM across the 12 melon linkage groups and is composed of 1592 markers (640 SSRs, 330 SNPs, 252 AFLPs, 239 RFLPs, 89 RAPDs, 15 IMAs, 16 indels and 11 morphological traits) with a mean marker density of 0.72 cM/marker. One hundred and ninety-six of these markers (157 SSRs, 32 SNPs, 6 indels and 1 RAPD) were newly developed, mapped or provided by industry representatives as released markers, including 27 SNPs and 5 indels from genes involved in the organic acid metabolism and transport, and 58 EST-SSRs. Additionally, 85 of 822 SSR markers contributed by Syngenta Seeds were included in the integrated map. In addition, 370 QTL controlling 62 traits from 18 previously reported mapping experiments using genetically diverse parental genotypes were also integrated into the consensus map. Some QTL associated with economically important traits detected in separate studies mapped to similar genomic positions. For example, independently identified QTL controlling fruit shape were mapped on similar genomic positions, suggesting that such QTL are possibly responsible for the phenotypic variability observed for this trait in a broad array of melon germplasm. Conclusions Even though relatively unsaturated genetic maps in a diverse set of melon market types have been published, the integrated saturated map presented herein should be considered the initial reference map for melon. Most of the mapped markers contained in the reference map are polymorphic in diverse collection of germplasm, and thus are potentially transferrable to a broad array of genetic experimentation (e.g., integration of physical and genetic maps, colinearity analysis, map-based gene cloning, epistasis dissection, and marker-assisted selection). PMID:21797998

  6. Importance of impacts scenarios for the adaptation of agriculture to climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zullo, J.; Macedo, C.; Pinto, H. S.; Assad, E. D.; Koga Vicente, A.

    2012-12-01

    The great possibility that the climate is already changing, and the most drastic way possible, increases the challenge of agricultural engineering, especially in environmentally vulnerable areas and in regions where agriculture has a high economic and social importance. Knowledge of potential impacts that may be caused by changes in water and thermal regimes in coming decades is increasingly strategic, as they allow the development of techniques to adapt agriculture to climate change and therefore minimizes the risk of undesirable impacts, for example, in food and nutritional security. Thus, the main objective of this paper is to describe a way to generate impacts scenarios caused by anomalies of precipitation and temperature in the definition of climate risk zoning of an agricultural crop very important in the tropics, such as the sugar cane, especially in central-southern Brazil, which is one of its main world producers. A key point here is the choice of the climate model to be used, considering that 23 different models were used in the fourth IPCC report published in 2007. The number and range of available models requires the definition of criteria for choosing the most suitable for the preparation of the impacts scenarios. One way proposed and used in this work is based on the definition of two groups of models according to 27 technical attributes of them. The clustering of 23 models in two groups, with a model representing each group (UKMO_HadCM3 and MIROC3.2_medres), assists the generation and comparison of impacts scenarios, making them more representative and useful. Another important aspect in the generation of impacts scenarios is the estimate of the relative importance of the anomalies of precipitation and temperature, which are the most commonly used. To assess the relative importance of the anomalies are generated scenarios considering an anomaly at a time and both together. The impacts scenarios for a high emission of greenhouse gases (A2), from 2010 to 2039, were more drastic for the sugar cane in central-southern Brazil using the UKMO_HadCM3 model than the MIROC3.2_medres model. These impacts scenarios, however, were less drastic than those generated for the arabica coffee in the same simulation conditions, reinforcing the increased vulnerability of this agricultural crop to climate change than the sugar cane. The inclusion of other restrictions on the climate risk zoning improves the quality of the generated scenarios and expands its usefulness for agricultural engineering.

  7. Association of SSR markers with important fiber traits in Upland cotton

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The objectives of this research are to: 1) report on the diversity in agronomic and fiber traits of the selected cotton germplasm released by the public breeders and private industries, 2) detect the genetic diversity among these lines using SSR markers, and 3) identify the SSR markers association w...

  8. Discovery of novel genetic networks associated with 19 economically important traits in beef cattle

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Quantitative or complex traits are determined by the combined effects of many loci, and are affected by gene-gene interactions, genetic networks or molecular pathways. In the present study, we genotyped a total of 138 mutations, mainly single nucleotide polymorphisms derived from 71 functional gene...

  9. Recent trends/challenges in irrigated agriculture-Why is irrigation important in a discussion of agricultural migration?

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    United States agriculture contributes 16% of the $9 trillion gross domestic product, 8% of U.S. exports, and 17% of employment while providing food to all citizens, despite the fact that only 2% of the U.S. workforces is on farms. Agricultural productivity has grown by 240% since 1948, while agricul...

  10. Genome Wide Association Study for Drought, Aflatoxin Resistance, and Important Agronomic Traits of Maize Hybrids in the Sub-Tropics

    PubMed Central

    Farfan, Ivan D. Barrero; De La Fuente, Gerald N.; Murray, Seth C.; Isakeit, Thomas; Huang, Pei-Cheng; Warburton, Marilyn; Williams, Paul; Windham, Gary L.; Kolomiets, Mike

    2015-01-01

    The primary maize (Zea mays L.) production areas are in temperate regions throughout the world and this is where most maize breeding is focused. Important but lower yielding maize growing regions such as the sub-tropics experience unique challenges, the greatest of which are drought stress and aflatoxin contamination. Here we used a diversity panel consisting of 346 maize inbred lines originating in temperate, sub-tropical and tropical areas testcrossed to stiff-stalk line Tx714 to investigate these traits. Testcross hybrids were evaluated under irrigated and non-irrigated trials for yield, plant height, ear height, days to anthesis, days to silking and other agronomic traits. Irrigated trials were also inoculated with Aspergillus flavus and evaluated for aflatoxin content. Diverse maize testcrosses out-yielded commercial checks in most trials, which indicated the potential for genetic diversity to improve sub-tropical breeding programs. To identify genomic regions associated with yield, aflatoxin resistance and other important agronomic traits, a genome wide association analysis was performed. Using 60,000 SNPs, this study found 10 quantitative trait variants for grain yield, plant and ear height, and flowering time after stringent multiple test corrections, and after fitting different models. Three of these variants explained 5–10% of the variation in grain yield under both water conditions. Multiple identified SNPs co-localized with previously reported QTL, which narrows the possible location of causal polymorphisms. Novel significant SNPs were also identified. This study demonstrated the potential to use genome wide association studies to identify major variants of quantitative and complex traits such as yield under drought that are still segregating between elite inbred lines. PMID:25714370

  11. Genome wide association study for drought, aflatoxin resistance, and important agronomic traits of maize hybrids in the sub-tropics.

    PubMed

    Farfan, Ivan D Barrero; De La Fuente, Gerald N; Murray, Seth C; Isakeit, Thomas; Huang, Pei-Cheng; Warburton, Marilyn; Williams, Paul; Windham, Gary L; Kolomiets, Mike

    2015-01-01

    The primary maize (Zea mays L.) production areas are in temperate regions throughout the world and this is where most maize breeding is focused. Important but lower yielding maize growing regions such as the sub-tropics experience unique challenges, the greatest of which are drought stress and aflatoxin contamination. Here we used a diversity panel consisting of 346 maize inbred lines originating in temperate, sub-tropical and tropical areas testcrossed to stiff-stalk line Tx714 to investigate these traits. Testcross hybrids were evaluated under irrigated and non-irrigated trials for yield, plant height, ear height, days to anthesis, days to silking and other agronomic traits. Irrigated trials were also inoculated with Aspergillus flavus and evaluated for aflatoxin content. Diverse maize testcrosses out-yielded commercial checks in most trials, which indicated the potential for genetic diversity to improve sub-tropical breeding programs. To identify genomic regions associated with yield, aflatoxin resistance and other important agronomic traits, a genome wide association analysis was performed. Using 60,000 SNPs, this study found 10 quantitative trait variants for grain yield, plant and ear height, and flowering time after stringent multiple test corrections, and after fitting different models. Three of these variants explained 5-10% of the variation in grain yield under both water conditions. Multiple identified SNPs co-localized with previously reported QTL, which narrows the possible location of causal polymorphisms. Novel significant SNPs were also identified. This study demonstrated the potential to use genome wide association studies to identify major variants of quantitative and complex traits such as yield under drought that are still segregating between elite inbred lines. PMID:25714370

  12. The Importance of Landscape Elements for Bat Activity and Species Richness in Agricultural Areas

    PubMed Central

    Heim, Olga; Treitler, Julia T.; Tschapka, Marco; Knörnschild, Mirjam; Jung, Kirsten

    2015-01-01

    Landscape heterogeneity is regarded as a key factor for maintaining biodiversity and ecosystem function in production landscapes. We investigated whether grassland sites at close vicinity to forested areas are more frequently used by bats. Considering that bats are important consumers of herbivorous insects, including agricultural pest, this is important for sustainable land management. Bat activity and species richness were assessed using repeated monitoring from May to September in 2010 with acoustic monitoring surveys on 50 grassland sites in the Biosphere Reserve Schorfheide-Chorin (North-East Germany). Using spatial analysis (GIS), we measured the closest distance of each grassland site to potentially connecting landscape elements (e.g., trees, linear vegetation, groves, running and standing water). In addition, we assessed the distance to and the percent land cover of forest remnants and urban areas in a 200 m buffer around the recording sites to address differences in the local landscape setting. Species richness and bat activity increased significantly with higher forest land cover in the 200 m buffer and at smaller distance to forested areas. Moreover, species richness increased in proximity to tree groves. Larger amount of forest land cover and smaller distance to forest also resulted in a higher activity of bats on grassland sites in the beginning of the year during May, June and July. Landscape elements near grassland sites also influenced species composition of bats and species richness of functional groups (open, edge and narrow space foragers). Our results highlight the importance of forested areas, and suggest that agricultural grasslands that are closer to forest remnants might be better buffered against outbreaks of agricultural pest insects due to higher species richness and higher bat activity. Furthermore, our data reveals that even for highly mobile species such as bats, a very dense network of connecting elements within the landscape is beneficial to promote activity in open areas and thus assure vital ecosystem function in agricultural landscapes. PMID:26231029

  13. The Importance of Landscape Elements for Bat Activity and Species Richness in Agricultural Areas.

    PubMed

    Heim, Olga; Treitler, Julia T; Tschapka, Marco; Knrnschild, Mirjam; Jung, Kirsten

    2015-01-01

    Landscape heterogeneity is regarded as a key factor for maintaining biodiversity and ecosystem function in production landscapes. We investigated whether grassland sites at close vicinity to forested areas are more frequently used by bats. Considering that bats are important consumers of herbivorous insects, including agricultural pest, this is important for sustainable land management. Bat activity and species richness were assessed using repeated monitoring from May to September in 2010 with acoustic monitoring surveys on 50 grassland sites in the Biosphere Reserve Schorfheide-Chorin (North-East Germany). Using spatial analysis (GIS), we measured the closest distance of each grassland site to potentially connecting landscape elements (e.g., trees, linear vegetation, groves, running and standing water). In addition, we assessed the distance to and the percent land cover of forest remnants and urban areas in a 200 m buffer around the recording sites to address differences in the local landscape setting. Species richness and bat activity increased significantly with higher forest land cover in the 200 m buffer and at smaller distance to forested areas. Moreover, species richness increased in proximity to tree groves. Larger amount of forest land cover and smaller distance to forest also resulted in a higher activity of bats on grassland sites in the beginning of the year during May, June and July. Landscape elements near grassland sites also influenced species composition of bats and species richness of functional groups (open, edge and narrow space foragers). Our results highlight the importance of forested areas, and suggest that agricultural grasslands that are closer to forest remnants might be better buffered against outbreaks of agricultural pest insects due to higher species richness and higher bat activity. Furthermore, our data reveals that even for highly mobile species such as bats, a very dense network of connecting elements within the landscape is beneficial to promote activity in open areas and thus assure vital ecosystem function in agricultural landscapes. PMID:26231029

  14. Big Five personality traits: are they really important for the subjective well-being of Indians?

    PubMed

    Tanksale, Deepa

    2015-02-01

    This study empirically examined the relationship between the Big Five personality traits and subjective well-being (SWB) in India. SWB variables used were life satisfaction, positive affect and negative affect. A total of 183 participants in the age range 30-40 years from Pune, India, completed the personality and SWB measures. Backward stepwise regression analysis showed that the Big Five traits accounted for 17% of the variance in life satisfaction, 35% variance in positive affect and 28% variance in negative affect. Conscientiousness emerged as the strongest predictor of life satisfaction. In line with the earlier research findings, neuroticism and extraversion were found to predict negative affect and positive affect, respectively. Neither openness to experience nor agreeableness contributed to SWB. The research emphasises the need to revisit the association between personality and SWB across different cultures, especially non-western cultures. PMID:25611929

  15. A conceptual model of root hair ideotypes for future agricultural environments: what combination of traits should be targeted to cope with limited P availability?

    PubMed Central

    Brown, L. K.; George, T. S.; Dupuy, L. X.; White, P. J.

    2013-01-01

    Background Phosphorus (P) often limits crop production and is frequently applied as fertilizer; however, supplies of quality rock phosphate for fertilizer production are diminishing. Plants have evolved many mechanisms to increase their P acquisition, and an understanding of these traits could result in improved long-term sustainability of agriculture. This Viewpoint focuses on the potential benefits of root hairs to sustainable production. Scope First the various root-related traits that could be deployed to improve agricultural sustainability are catalogued, and their potential costs and benefits to the plant are discussed. A novel mathematical model describing the effects of length, density and longevity of root hairs on P acquisition is developed, and the relative benefits of these three root-hair traits to plant P nutrition are calculated. Insights from this model are combined with experimental data to assess the relative benefits of a range of root hair ideotypes for sustainability of agriculture. Conclusions A cost–benefit analysis of root traits suggests that root hairs have the greatest potential for P acquisition relative to their cost of production. The novel modelling of root hair development indicates that the greatest gains in P-uptake efficiency are likely to be made through increased length and longevity of root hairs rather than by increasing their density. Synthesizing this information with that from published experiments we formulate six potential ideotypes to improve crop P acquisition. These combine appropriate root hair phenotypes with architectural, anatomical and biochemical traits, such that more root-hair zones are produced in surface soils, where P resources are found, on roots which are metabolically cheap to construct and maintain, and that release more P-mobilizing exudates. These ideotypes could be used to inform breeding programmes to enhance agricultural sustainability. PMID:23172412

  16. The importance of an alternative for sustainability of agriculture around the periphery of the Amazon rainforest.

    PubMed

    Moura, Emanoel G; Sena, Virley G L; Corrêa, Mariana S; Aguiar, Alana das C F

    2013-04-01

    The unsustainable use of the soil of the deforested area at the Amazonian border is one of the greatest threats to the rainforest, because it is the predominant cause of shifting cultivation in the region. The sustainable management of soils with low natural fertility is a major challenge for smallholder agriculture in the humid tropics. In the periphery of Brazilian Amazonia, agricultural practices that are recommended for the Brazilian savannah, such as saturating soils with soluble nutrients do not ensure the sustainability of agroecosystems. Improvements in the tilled topsoil cannot be maintained if deterioration of the porous soil structure is not prevented and nutrient losses in the root zone are not curtailed. The information gleaned from experiments affirms that in the management of humid tropical agrosystems, the processes resulting from the interaction between climatic factors and indicators of soil quality must be taken into consideration. It must be remembered that these interactions manifest themselves in ways that cannot be predicted from the paradigm established in the other region like the southeast of Brazil, which is based only on improving the chemical indicators of soil quality. The physical indicators play important role in the sustainable management of the agrosystems of the region and for these reasons must be considered. Therefore, alley cropping is a potential substitute for slash and burn agriculture in the humid tropics with both environmental and agronomic advantages, due to its ability to produce a large amount of residues on the soil surface and its effect on the increase of economic crop productivity in the long term. The article presents some promising patents on the importance of an alternative for sustainability of agriculture. PMID:23305424

  17. Agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agriculture within the United States is varied and produces a large value ($200 billion in 2002) of production across a wide range of plant and animal production systems. Because of this diversity, changes in climate will likely impact agriculture throughout the United States. Climate affects crop, ...

  18. Importance of instream wood characteristics for developing restoration designs for channelized agricultural headwater streams

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Channelized agricultural headwater streams are a common feature within agricultural watersheds of the Midwestern United States. These small streams have been impacted by the physical and chemical habitat alterations incurred to facilitate agricultural drainage. Quantitative information on the instr...

  19. ATTED-II in 2014: Evaluation of Gene Coexpression in Agriculturally Important Plants

    PubMed Central

    Obayashi, Takeshi; Okamura, Yasunobu; Ito, Satoshi; Tadaka, Shu; Aoki, Yuichi; Shirota, Matsuyuki; Kinoshita, Kengo

    2014-01-01

    ATTED-II (http://atted.jp) is a database of coexpressed genes that was originally developed to identify functionally related genes in Arabidopsis and rice. Herein, we describe an updated version of ATTED-II, which expands this resource to include additional agriculturally important plants. To improve the quality of the coexpression data for Arabidopsis and rice, we included more gene expression data from microarray and RNA sequencing studies. The RNA sequencing-based coexpression data now cover 94% of the Arabidopsis protein-encoding genes, representing a substantial increase from previously available microarray-based coexpression data (76% coverage). We also generated coexpression data for four dicots (soybean, poplar, grape and alfalfa) and one monocot (maize). As both the quantity and quality of expression data for the non-model species are generally poorer than for the model species, we verified coexpression data associated with these new species using multiple methods. First, the overall performance of the coexpression data was evaluated using gene ontology annotations and the coincidence of a genomic feature. Secondly, the reliability of each guide gene was determined by comparing coexpressed gene lists between platforms. With the expanded and newly evaluated coexpression data, ATTED-II represents an important resource for identifying functionally related genes in agriculturally important plants. PMID:24334350

  20. Metabolic prediction of important agronomic traits in hybrid rice (Oryza sativa L.).

    PubMed

    Dan, Zhiwu; Hu, Jun; Zhou, Wei; Yao, Guoxin; Zhu, Renshan; Zhu, Yingguo; Huang, Wenchao

    2016-01-01

    Hybrid crops have contributed greatly to improvements in global food and fodder production over the past several decades. Nevertheless, the growing population and changing climate have produced food crises and energy shortages. Breeding new elite hybrid varieties is currently an urgent task, but present breeding procedures are time-consuming and labour-intensive. In this study, parental metabolic information was utilized to predict three polygenic traits in hybrid rice. A complete diallel cross population consisting of eighteen rice inbred lines was constructed, and the hybrids' plant height, heading date and grain yield per plant were predicted using 525 metabolites. Metabolic prediction models were built using the partial least square regression method, with predictive abilities ranging from 0.858 to 0.977 for the hybrid phenotypes, relative heterosis, and specific combining ability. Only slight changes in predictive ability were observed between hybrid populations, and nearly no changes were detected between reciprocal hybrids. The outcomes of prediction of the three highly polygenic traits demonstrated that metabolic prediction was an accurate (high predictive abilities) and efficient (unaffected by population genetic structures) strategy for screening promising superior hybrid rice. Exploitation of this pre-hybridization strategy may contribute to rice production improvement and accelerate breeding programs. PMID:26907211

  1. Metabolic prediction of important agronomic traits in hybrid rice (Oryza sativa L.)

    PubMed Central

    Dan, Zhiwu; Hu, Jun; Zhou, Wei; Yao, Guoxin; Zhu, Renshan; Zhu, Yingguo; Huang, Wenchao

    2016-01-01

    Hybrid crops have contributed greatly to improvements in global food and fodder production over the past several decades. Nevertheless, the growing population and changing climate have produced food crises and energy shortages. Breeding new elite hybrid varieties is currently an urgent task, but present breeding procedures are time-consuming and labour-intensive. In this study, parental metabolic information was utilized to predict three polygenic traits in hybrid rice. A complete diallel cross population consisting of eighteen rice inbred lines was constructed, and the hybrids’ plant height, heading date and grain yield per plant were predicted using 525 metabolites. Metabolic prediction models were built using the partial least square regression method, with predictive abilities ranging from 0.858 to 0.977 for the hybrid phenotypes, relative heterosis, and specific combining ability. Only slight changes in predictive ability were observed between hybrid populations, and nearly no changes were detected between reciprocal hybrids. The outcomes of prediction of the three highly polygenic traits demonstrated that metabolic prediction was an accurate (high predictive abilities) and efficient (unaffected by population genetic structures) strategy for screening promising superior hybrid rice. Exploitation of this pre-hybridization strategy may contribute to rice production improvement and accelerate breeding programs. PMID:26907211

  2. Brain vasopressin is an important regulator of maternal behavior independent of dams' trait anxiety

    PubMed Central

    Bosch, Oliver J.; Neumann, Inga D.

    2008-01-01

    The neuropeptide arginine vasopressin (AVP) is arguably among the most potent regulators of social behaviors in mammals identified to date. However, only the related neuropeptide oxytocin (OXT) has been shown to promote maternal behavior. Here, we assess the role of AVP in maternal care, in particular in arched back nursing, pup retrieval, and pup contact by using complementary pharmacological and genetic approaches. Also, experiments were performed in rat dams with differences in trait anxiety, i.e., rats bred for either high (HAB) or low (LAB) anxiety-related behavior as well as nonselected (NAB) dams. Viral vector-mediated up-regulation of AVP V1a receptors (AVP-Rs) within the medial preoptic area of lactating NAB rats and chronic central AVP treatment of NAB and LAB dams improved, whereas local blockade of AVP-R expression by means of antisense oligodeoxynucleotides or central AVP-R antagonism impaired, maternal care in NAB dams. Also, in HAB rats with a genetically determined elevated brain AVP activity, intrinsically high levels of maternal care were reversed by blockade of AVP-R actions. Treatment-induced impairment of AVP-mediated maternal behavior increased adult emotionality and impaired social interactions in male offspring of NAB dams. These findings provide direct evidence for an essential and highly potent role of brain AVP in promoting maternal behavior, which seems to be independent of the dam's trait anxiety. PMID:18955705

  3. Supplementary calcium ameliorates ammonium toxicity by improving water status in agriculturally important species.

    PubMed

    Hernández-Gómez, Elvia; Valdez-Aguilar, Luis A; Cartmill, Donita L; Cartmill, Andrew D; Alia-Tajacal, Irán

    2015-01-01

    Fertilization of agricultural plants with ammonium [Formula: see text] is often desirable because it is less susceptible to leaching than nitrate [Formula: see text] reducing environmental pollution, risk to human health and economic loss. However, a number of important agricultural species exhibit a reduction in growth when fertilized with [Formula: see text] and increasing the tolerance to [Formula: see text] may be of importance for the establishment of sustainable agricultural systems. The present study explored the feasibility of using calcium (Ca) to increase the tolerance of bell pepper (Capsicum annuum) to [Formula: see text] fertilization. Although [Formula: see text] at proportions ≥25 % of total nitrogen (N) decreased leaf dry mass (DM), supplementary Ca ameliorated this decrease. Increasing [Formula: see text] resulted in decreased root hydraulic conductance (Lo) and root water content (RWC), suggesting that water uptake by roots was impaired. The [Formula: see text]-induced reductions in Lo and RWC were mitigated by supplementary Ca. Ammonium induced increased damage to the cell membranes through lipid peroxidation, causing increased electrolyte leakage; Ca did not reduce lipid peroxidation and resulted in increased electrolyte leakage, suggesting that the beneficial effects of Ca on the tolerance to [Formula: see text] may be more of a reflection on its effect on the water status of the plant. Bell pepper plants that received [Formula: see text] had a low concentration of [Formula: see text] in the roots but a high concentration in the leaves, probably due to the high nitrate reductase activity observed. Ammonium nutrition depressed the uptake of potassium, Ca and magnesium, while increasing that of phosphorus. The results obtained in the present study indicate that [Formula: see text] caused growth reduction, nutrient imbalance, membrane integrity impairment, increased activity of antioxidant enzymes and affected water relations. Supplementary Ca partially restored growth of leaves by improving root Lo and water relations, and our results suggest that it may be used as a tool to increase the tolerance to [Formula: see text] fertilization. PMID:26333825

  4. Supplementary calcium ameliorates ammonium toxicity by improving water status in agriculturally important species

    PubMed Central

    Hernández-Gómez, Elvia; Valdez-Aguilar, Luis A.; Cartmill, Donita L.; Cartmill, Andrew D.; Alia-Tajacal, Irán

    2015-01-01

    Fertilization of agricultural plants with ammonium (NH4+) is often desirable because it is less susceptible to leaching than nitrate (NO3−), reducing environmental pollution, risk to human health and economic loss. However, a number of important agricultural species exhibit a reduction in growth when fertilized with NH4+, and increasing the tolerance to NH4+ may be of importance for the establishment of sustainable agricultural systems. The present study explored the feasibility of using calcium (Ca) to increase the tolerance of bell pepper (Capsicum annuum) to NH4+ fertilization. Although NH4+ at proportions ≥25 % of total nitrogen (N) decreased leaf dry mass (DM), supplementary Ca ameliorated this decrease. Increasing NH4+ resulted in decreased root hydraulic conductance (Lo) and root water content (RWC), suggesting that water uptake by roots was impaired. The NH4+-induced reductions in Lo and RWC were mitigated by supplementary Ca. Ammonium induced increased damage to the cell membranes through lipid peroxidation, causing increased electrolyte leakage; Ca did not reduce lipid peroxidation and resulted in increased electrolyte leakage, suggesting that the beneficial effects of Ca on the tolerance to NH4+ may be more of a reflection on its effect on the water status of the plant. Bell pepper plants that received NO3−N had a low concentration of NH4+ in the roots but a high concentration in the leaves, probably due to the high nitrate reductase activity observed. Ammonium nutrition depressed the uptake of potassium, Ca and magnesium, while increasing that of phosphorus. The results obtained in the present study indicate that NH4+ caused growth reduction, nutrient imbalance, membrane integrity impairment, increased activity of antioxidant enzymes and affected water relations. Supplementary Ca partially restored growth of leaves by improving root Lo and water relations, and our results suggest that it may be used as a tool to increase the tolerance to NH4+ fertilization. PMID:26333825

  5. Association Mapping in Scandinavian Winter Wheat for Yield, Plant Height, and Traits Important for Second-Generation Bioethanol Production

    PubMed Central

    Bellucci, Andrea; Torp, Anna Maria; Bruun, Sander; Magid, Jakob; Andersen, Sven B.; Rasmussen, Søren K.

    2015-01-01

    A collection of 100 wheat varieties representing more than 100 years of wheat-breeding history in Scandinavia was established in order to identify marker-trait associations for plant height (PH), grain yield (GY), and biomass potential for bioethanol production. The field-grown material showed variations in PH from 54 to 122 cm and in GY from 2 to 6.61 t ha-1. The release of monomeric sugars was determined by high-throughput enzymatic treatment of ligno-cellulosic material and varied between 0.169 and 0.312 g/g dm for glucose (GLU) and 0.146 and 0.283 g/g dm for xylose (XYL). As expected, PH and GY showed to be highly influenced by genetic factors with repeatability (R) equal to 0.75 and 0.53, respectively, while this was reduced for GLU and XYL (R = 0.09 for both). The study of trait correlations showed how old, low-yielding, tall varieties released higher amounts of monomeric sugars after straw enzymatic hydrolysis, showing reduced recalcitrance to bioconversion compared to modern varieties. Ninety-three lines from the collection were genotyped with the DArTseq® genotypic platform and 5525 markers were used for genome-wide association mapping. Six quantitative trait loci (QTLs) for GY, PH, and GLU released from straw were mapped. One QTL for PH was previously reported, while the remaining QTLs constituted new genomic regions linked to trait variation. This paper is one of the first studies in wheat to identify QTLs that are important for bioethanol production based on a genome-wide association approach. PMID:26635859

  6. 75 FR 11512 - Consultative Group to Eliminate the Use of Child Labor and Forced Labor in Imported Agricultural...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-03-11

    ...Notice is hereby given that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will be holding a public meeting of the Consultative Group to Eliminate the Use of Child Labor and Forced Labor in Imported Agricultural Products (Consultative Group) on March 29, 2010. The sole purpose of the meeting is to solicit input from the public regarding the Consultative Group's statutory mandate to develop......

  7. Mathematical modelling of antimicrobial resistance in agricultural waste highlights importance of gene transfer rate.

    PubMed

    Baker, Michelle; Hobman, Jon L; Dodd, Christine E R; Ramsden, Stephen J; Stekel, Dov J

    2016-04-01

    Antimicrobial resistance is of global concern. Most antimicrobial use is in agriculture; manures and slurry are especially important because they contain a mix of bacteria, including potential pathogens, antimicrobial resistance genes and antimicrobials. In many countries, manures and slurry are stored, especially over winter, before spreading onto fields as organic fertilizer. Thus, these are a potential location for gene exchange and selection for resistance. We develop and analyse a mathematical model to quantify the spread of antimicrobial resistance in stored agricultural waste. We use parameters from a slurry tank on a UK dairy farm as an exemplar. We show that the spread of resistance depends in a subtle way on the rates of gene transfer and antibiotic inflow. If the gene transfer rate is high, then its reduction controls resistance, while cutting antibiotic inflow has little impact. If the gene transfer rate is low, then reducing antibiotic inflow controls resistance. Reducing length of storage can also control spread of resistance. Bacterial growth rate, fitness costs of carrying antimicrobial resistance and proportion of resistant bacteria in animal faeces have little impact on spread of resistance. Therefore, effective treatment strategies depend critically on knowledge of gene transfer rates. PMID:26906100

  8. Genomic signatures reveal new evidences for selection of important traits in domestic cattle.

    PubMed

    Xu, Lingyang; Bickhart, Derek M; Cole, John B; Schroeder, Steven G; Song, Jiuzhou; Tassell, Curtis P Van; Sonstegard, Tad S; Liu, George E

    2015-03-01

    We investigated diverse genomic selections using high-density single nucleotide polymorphism data of five distinct cattle breeds. Based on allele frequency differences, we detected hundreds of candidate regions under positive selection across Holstein, Angus, Charolais, Brahman, and N'Dama. In addition to well-known genes such as KIT, MC1R, ASIP, GHR, LCORL, NCAPG, WIF1, and ABCA12, we found evidence for a variety of novel and less-known genes under selection in cattle, such as LAP3, SAR1B, LRIG3, FGF5, and NUDCD3. Selective sweeps near LAP3 were then validated by next-generation sequencing. Genome-wide association analysis involving 26,362 Holsteins confirmed that LAP3 and SAR1B were related to milk production traits, suggesting that our candidate regions were likely functional. In addition, haplotype network analyses further revealed distinct selective pressures and evolution patterns across these five cattle breeds. Our results provided a glimpse into diverse genomic selection during cattle domestication, breed formation, and recent genetic improvement. These findings will facilitate genome-assisted breeding to improve animal production and health. PMID:25431480

  9. Genomic Signatures Reveal New Evidences for Selection of Important Traits in Domestic Cattle

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Lingyang; Bickhart, Derek M.; Cole, John B.; Schroeder, Steven G.; Song, Jiuzhou; Tassell, Curtis P. Van; Sonstegard, Tad S.; Liu, George E.

    2015-01-01

    We investigated diverse genomic selections using high-density single nucleotide polymorphism data of five distinct cattle breeds. Based on allele frequency differences, we detected hundreds of candidate regions under positive selection across Holstein, Angus, Charolais, Brahman, and N'Dama. In addition to well-known genes such as KIT, MC1R, ASIP, GHR, LCORL, NCAPG, WIF1, and ABCA12, we found evidence for a variety of novel and less-known genes under selection in cattle, such as LAP3, SAR1B, LRIG3, FGF5, and NUDCD3. Selective sweeps near LAP3 were then validated by next-generation sequencing. Genome-wide association analysis involving 26,362 Holsteins confirmed that LAP3 and SAR1B were related to milk production traits, suggesting that our candidate regions were likely functional. In addition, haplotype network analyses further revealed distinct selective pressures and evolution patterns across these five cattle breeds. Our results provided a glimpse into diverse genomic selection during cattle domestication, breed formation, and recent genetic improvement. These findings will facilitate genome-assisted breeding to improve animal production and health. PMID:25431480

  10. Plant growth promotion in cereal and leguminous agricultural important plants: from microorganism capacities to crop production.

    PubMed

    Pérez-Montaño, F; Alías-Villegas, C; Bellogín, R A; del Cerro, P; Espuny, M R; Jiménez-Guerrero, I; López-Baena, F J; Ollero, F J; Cubo, T

    2014-01-01

    Plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR) are free-living bacteria which actively colonize plant roots, exerting beneficial effects on plant development. The PGPR may (i) promote the plant growth either by using their own metabolism (solubilizing phosphates, producing hormones or fixing nitrogen) or directly affecting the plant metabolism (increasing the uptake of water and minerals), enhancing root development, increasing the enzymatic activity of the plant or "helping" other beneficial microorganisms to enhance their action on the plants; (ii) or may promote the plant growth by suppressing plant pathogens. These abilities are of great agriculture importance in terms of improving soil fertility and crop yield, thus reducing the negative impact of chemical fertilizers on the environment. The progress in the last decade in using PGPR in a variety of plants (maize, rice, wheat, soybean and bean) along with their mechanism of action are summarized and discussed here. PMID:24144612

  11. The relative importance of microbial nitrate reduction processes in an agriculturally-impacted estuary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cardarelli, E.; Francis, C. A.

    2013-12-01

    Human activities are increasing reactive nitrogen levels worldwide. Reactive nitrogen exists largely as nitrate and may be ecologically harmful to nutrient-limited systems. Nitrate loadings to the environment may be transformed by the microbial nitrate reduction processes of denitrification (converting nitrate to dinitrogen gas), or of dissimilatory nitrate reduction to ammonium (DNRA) (allowing reactive nitrogen to persist). The predominant nitrate reduction pathway largely determines the nitrogen removal capacity of the estuary. Therefore, identifying the relative importance of denitrification and DNRA in a given system provides insight into how much nitrate is transformed to dinitrogen and ammonium. Estuary sediments often have high nitrate reduction rates, but the environmental factors that determine which process prevails are underexplored. Nitrate availability and salinity are thought to influence which nitrate reduction process predominates. Elkhorn Slough is a small California estuary that experiences a range of nitrate concentrations (0 to over 2,000 ?M) and salinities (0 to 33.5) depending on the agricultural runoff introduced through the Old Salinas River and the tidal influence. This study investigates how the fluctuating nutrient and salinity conditions found over the diel cycle at the interface of the Old Salinas River and Elkhorn Slough influences the nitrogen transformation rates observed. Benthic denitrification and DNRA are evaluated using whole sediment core incubations amended with an overlying 15NO3- labeled pool. Rates of denitrification and DNRA in the sediment are calculated using the isotope pairing technique. The results of this research will help elucidate the relative importance of dissimilatory nitrate removal pathways in an agriculturally-impacted estuary and ultimately reveal whether anthropogenic nitrate inputs are preserved or removed from the system.

  12. QTL of three agronomically important traits and their interactions with environment in a European x Chinese rapeseed population.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Jian-Yi; Becker, Heiko C; Ding, Hou-Dong; Zhang, Yao-Feng; Zhang, Dong-Qing; Ecke, Wolfgang

    2005-09-01

    A rapeseed population consisted of 282 doubled haploid (DH) lines derived from a cross between a European vality "Sallux" and a Chinese inbred line "Gaoyou" was planted in 4 locations, 2 in Xi'an and Hangzhou, China, and 2 in Goettingen, Germany. Field experiments were carried out to obtain agronomically phenotypic data from above four environments. A linkage map including 125 SSR-markers was constructed and QTL analyses was performed using mixed model approach to detect QTLs showing additive (a), epistasis (aa) as well as their interactions with environments (QE) for three important agronomic traits: plant height, flowering time and maturity. The results demonstrated that each trait was controlled by several QTLs with additive effect and a number of QTLs with epistatic and QE interaction effects. Plant height was controlled by many QTLs (12 loci with a or combined ae, 5 loci with ae). Additive effects were predominant,totally explained 75% of the phenotypic variation and often combined with digenic epistasis. Of 12 main QTLs, 9 showed Gaoyou alleles decreasing plant height. Most of QTLs with QE effects showed ecologically favourable alleles in diverse regions. Five of 7 ae loci showed Gaoyou alleles in Hangzhou and all the ae loci but one had Sollux alleles in two locations of Germany increasing plant height. The digenic epistatic main effect accounted for one third of total additive main effects. In this study,we discovered 7 and 8 loci having significant additive main effects upon flowering time and maturity, respectively. Of them, early flowering and maturity alleles were respectively 6 and 5 derived from Chinese parent Gaoyou. All these QTLs together accounted for around 60% of the phenotypic variation for each trait. Significant ae interactions were detected for flowering time and maturity and parental alleles showed almost evenly dispersal at all environments. Three of 8 main QTLs for maturity were located at similar or identical positions as QTLs for flowering time, which confirmed the close correlation between these two traits. Two QTLs for plant height on linkage groups N14-1 and 19 were located at similar positions as QTL for flowering time and as already known QTLs for oil content. Selection for reduced plant height and early flowering might reduce oil content. Digenic epistatic QTLs both for flowering time and maturity were detected but much less important than QTLs with additive effects. PMID:16201242

  13. Identification of quantitative trait loci(QTL) controlling important fatty acids in peanut (Arachis hypogaea L.)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Fatty acids play important role in controlling oil quality of peanut. In addition to the major fatty acids, oleic acid (C18:1) and linoleic acid (C18:2) accounting for about 80%, there are several minor fatty acids accounting for about 20% in peanut oil, such as palmitic acid (PA, C16:0), stearic (S...

  14. Importance of wetland landscape structure to shorebirds wintering in an agricultural valley

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Taft, Oriane W.; Haig, Susan M.

    2006-01-01

    Only recently has the influence of landscape structure on habitat use been a research focus in wetland systems. During non-breeding periods when food can be locally limited, wetland spatial pattern across a landscape may be of great importance in determining wetland use. We studied the influence of landscape structure on abundances of wintering Dunlin (Calidris alpina) and Killdeer (Charadrius vociferus) observed on wetlands in the agricultural Willamette Valley of Oregon, USA, during two winters (1999a??2000, 2000a??2001) of differing rainfall. We examined (1) shorebird use within a sample of 100 km2 regions differing in landscape structure (hectares of shorebird habitat [wet, unvegetated]) and (2) use of sites differing in landscape context (area of shorebird habitat within a species-defined radius). For use of sites, we also assessed the influence of two local characteristics: percent of soil exposed and area of wet habitat. We analyzed data using linear regression and information-theoretic modeling. During the dry winter (2000a??2001), Dunlin were attracted to regions with more wetland habitat and their abundances at sites increased with greater area of shorebird habitat within both the site and the surrounding landscape. In contrast, Dunlin abundances at sites were related to availability of habitat at only a local scale during the wet winter (1999a??2000). Regional habitat availability was of little importance in predicting Killdeer distributions, and Killdeer site use appeared unrelated to habitat distributions at both landscape and local scales. Results suggest prioritizing sites for conservation that are located in areas with high wetland coverage.

  15. Genome-Wide Analysis Reveals Selection for Important Traits in Domestic Horse Breeds

    PubMed Central

    Petersen, Jessica L.; Mickelson, James R.; Rendahl, Aaron K.; Valberg, Stephanie J.; Andersson, Lisa S.; Axelsson, Jeanette; Bailey, Ernie; Bannasch, Danika; Binns, Matthew M.; Borges, Alexandre S.; Brama, Pieter; da Câmara Machado, Artur; Capomaccio, Stefano; Cappelli, Katia; Cothran, E. Gus; Distl, Ottmar; Fox-Clipsham, Laura; Graves, Kathryn T.; Guérin, Gérard; Haase, Bianca; Hasegawa, Telhisa; Hemmann, Karin; Hill, Emmeline W.; Leeb, Tosso; Lindgren, Gabriella; Lohi, Hannes; Lopes, Maria Susana; McGivney, Beatrice A.; Mikko, Sofia; Orr, Nicholas; Penedo, M. Cecilia T.; Piercy, Richard J.; Raekallio, Marja; Rieder, Stefan; Røed, Knut H.; Swinburne, June; Tozaki, Teruaki; Vaudin, Mark; Wade, Claire M.; McCue, Molly E.

    2013-01-01

    Intense selective pressures applied over short evolutionary time have resulted in homogeneity within, but substantial variation among, horse breeds. Utilizing this population structure, 744 individuals from 33 breeds, and a 54,000 SNP genotyping array, breed-specific targets of selection were identified using an FST-based statistic calculated in 500-kb windows across the genome. A 5.5-Mb region of ECA18, in which the myostatin (MSTN) gene was centered, contained the highest signature of selection in both the Paint and Quarter Horse. Gene sequencing and histological analysis of gluteal muscle biopsies showed a promoter variant and intronic SNP of MSTN were each significantly associated with higher Type 2B and lower Type 1 muscle fiber proportions in the Quarter Horse, demonstrating a functional consequence of selection at this locus. Signatures of selection on ECA23 in all gaited breeds in the sample led to the identification of a shared, 186-kb haplotype including two doublesex related mab transcription factor genes (DMRT2 and 3). The recent identification of a DMRT3 mutation within this haplotype, which appears necessary for the ability to perform alternative gaits, provides further evidence for selection at this locus. Finally, putative loci for the determination of size were identified in the draft breeds and the Miniature horse on ECA11, as well as when signatures of selection surrounding candidate genes at other loci were examined. This work provides further evidence of the importance of MSTN in racing breeds, provides strong evidence for selection upon gait and size, and illustrates the potential for population-based techniques to find genomic regions driving important phenotypes in the modern horse. PMID:23349635

  16. The importance of instream habitat modifications for restoring channelized agricultural headwater streams

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Science based information on the influence of restoration practices on fishes within channelized agricultural headwater streams in the Midwestern United States is currently lacking. Understanding fish-habitat relationships and fish responses to specific restoration practices will provide informatio...

  17. Relative importance of phenotypic trait matching and species' abundances in determining plant-avian seed dispersal interactions in a small insular community.

    PubMed

    Gonzlez-Castro, Aarn; Yang, Suann; Nogales, Manuel; Carlo, Toms A

    2015-01-01

    Network theory has provided a general way to understand mutualistic plant-animal interactions at the community level. However, the mechanisms responsible for interaction patterns remain controversial. In this study we use a combination of statistical models and probability matrices to evaluate the relative importance of species morphological and nutritional (phenotypic) traits and species abundance in determining interactions between fleshy-fruited plants and birds that disperse their seeds. The models included variables associated with species abundance, a suite of variables associated with phenotypic traits (fruit diameter, bird bill width, fruit nutrient compounds), and the species identity of the avian disperser. Results show that both phenotypic traits and species abundance are important determinants of pairwise interactions. However, when considered separately, fruit diameter and bill width were more important in determining seed dispersal interactions. The effect of fruit compounds was less substantial and only important when considered together with abundance-related variables and/or the factor 'animal species'. PMID:25750409

  18. Relative importance of phenotypic trait matching and species' abundances in determining plant–avian seed dispersal interactions in a small insular community

    PubMed Central

    González-Castro, Aarón; Yang, Suann; Nogales, Manuel; Carlo, Tomás A.

    2015-01-01

    Network theory has provided a general way to understand mutualistic plant–animal interactions at the community level. However, the mechanisms responsible for interaction patterns remain controversial. In this study we use a combination of statistical models and probability matrices to evaluate the relative importance of species morphological and nutritional (phenotypic) traits and species abundance in determining interactions between fleshy-fruited plants and birds that disperse their seeds. The models included variables associated with species abundance, a suite of variables associated with phenotypic traits (fruit diameter, bird bill width, fruit nutrient compounds), and the species identity of the avian disperser. Results show that both phenotypic traits and species abundance are important determinants of pairwise interactions. However, when considered separately, fruit diameter and bill width were more important in determining seed dispersal interactions. The effect of fruit compounds was less substantial and only important when considered together with abundance-related variables and/or the factor ‘animal species’. PMID:25750409

  19. Agricultural geological importance of the depth and thickness of impermeable layers on south-eastern Hungary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuti, Laszlo; Kerek, Barbara; Muller, Tamas; Szentpetery, Ildiko

    2010-05-01

    For the examination of the infiltration and the direction and velocity of the groundwater flow we must determine the thickness and depth of the first impermeable level. Impermeable layers could slow down the groundwater movement, change its direction, and could separate the aquifer layers. In certain situations they can protect deeper layers and the groundwater moving in them from contaminations. At the same time they can also close water from the roots of different plants. We should handle every loose sediments which contains more than 60 percent of clay (all grains with size under 0,02 mm) as impermeable level. That is very important to know the situation of the first impermeable layer to the surface. The closer the impermeable level to the surface, the more intense sealing effect occurs. Impermeable layers deeper than four meters have almost no influence on the surface conditions. Permeability of the near surface layers is also influenced by the thickness of the impermeable layer. The best impermeable layers have a thickness more than four meters. We can represent the depth and thickness of the non-pervious sediments on the same map. The recognition of the impermeable layers makes easier to outline polluted groundwater bodies, to figure out the moving direction of the groundwater flow and the polluted groundwater, and we can also compile infiltration sensibility maps from these data. It is also possible to make a prognosis of vulnerability to inland water and it has an influence on land dessication too. The recognition of the impermeable layers with the information of the depth and the chemical type of the groundwater can help us to decide about irrigability and about thy type of that if necessary. The south-eastern part of the Great Hungarian Plain is very suitable for his kind of land evaluation because of its agricultural importance and because this area has more micro-lands (as the eolian dunes of the Danube-Tisza hilly region, the younger alluvial sediments of the Tisza-valley and the older alluvial sediments of the south part of the Transtisza region). At the meeting zone of the different micro-lands, there are impermeable layers with great variation in position to the surface and also in thickness.

  20. Agricultural By-Products Turned into Important Materials with Adsorptive Properties

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This presentation will summarize the use of agricultural by-products (e.g., animal manure and plant waste) as starting materials to adsorb environmental contaminants such as mercury from air, ammonia from air, metal ions from water, and chlorinated organics from water. The results show that the mat...

  1. Assessing the importance of agricultural management practices to reduce the ecological risk of pesticides

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The use of pesticides in agriculture, their potential to be transported beyond the intended target, and their possible risk to human and environmental health has been of public concern for many years. We utilized 5 years of field data from 3 vegetable production systems to evaluate the ability of ag...

  2. 7 CFR 319.8-20 - Importations by the Department of Agriculture.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... such conditions as may be prescribed by the Deputy Administrator of the Plant Protection and Quarantine Programs, which conditions may include clearance through the New Crops Research Branch of the Plant Science... PLANT HEALTH INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOREIGN QUARANTINE NOTICES Foreign Cotton...

  3. 7 CFR 319.8-20 - Importations by the Department of Agriculture.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... such conditions as may be prescribed by the Deputy Administrator of the Plant Protection and Quarantine Programs, which conditions may include clearance through the New Crops Research Branch of the Plant Science... PLANT HEALTH INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOREIGN QUARANTINE NOTICES Foreign Cotton...

  4. 7 CFR 319.8-20 - Importations by the Department of Agriculture.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... such conditions as may be prescribed by the Deputy Administrator of the Plant Protection and Quarantine Programs, which conditions may include clearance through the New Crops Research Branch of the Plant Science... PLANT HEALTH INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOREIGN QUARANTINE NOTICES Foreign Cotton...

  5. 7 CFR 319.8-20 - Importations by the Department of Agriculture.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... such conditions as may be prescribed by the Deputy Administrator of the Plant Protection and Quarantine Programs, which conditions may include clearance through the New Crops Research Branch of the Plant Science... PLANT HEALTH INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOREIGN QUARANTINE NOTICES Foreign Cotton...

  6. Agriculturally important yeasts: Biological control of field and postharvest diseases using yeast antagonists, and yeasts as pathogens of plants

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Two important agricultural aspects of yeasts, control of plant diseases through application of yeasts as the control agent, and yeasts that are plant pathogens are reviewed. Yeasts as biocontrol organisms are presented first, followed by a discussion of some of the more common plant pathogenic yeas...

  7. A reference consensus genetic map for molecular markers and economically important traits in faba bean (Vicia faba L.)

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Faba bean (Vicia faba L.) is among the earliest domesticated crops from the Near East. Today this legume is a key protein feed and food worldwide and continues to serve an important role in culinary traditions throughout Middle East, Mediterranean region, China and Ethiopia. Adapted to a wide range of soil types, the main faba bean breeding objectives are to improve yield, resistance to biotic and abiotic stresses, seed quality and other agronomic traits. Genomic approaches aimed at enhancing faba bean breeding programs require high-quality genetic linkage maps to facilitate quantitative trait locus analysis and gene tagging for use in a marker-assisted selection. The objective of this study was to construct a reference consensus map in faba bean by joining the information from the most relevant maps reported so far in this crop. Results A combination of two approaches, increasing the number of anchor loci in diverse mapping populations and joining the corresponding genetic maps, was used to develop a reference consensus map in faba bean. The map was constructed from three main recombinant inbreed populations derived from four parental lines, incorporates 729 markers and is based on 69 common loci. It spans 4,602 cM with a range from 323 to 1041 loci in six main linkage groups or chromosomes, and an average marker density of one locus every 6 cM. Locus order is generally well maintained between the consensus map and the individual maps. Conclusion We have constructed a reliable and fairly dense consensus genetic linkage map that will serve as a basis for genomic approaches in faba bean research and breeding. The core map contains a larger number of markers than any previous individual map, covers existing gaps and achieves a wider coverage of the large faba bean genome as a whole. This tool can be used as a reference resource for studies in different genetic backgrounds, and provides a framework for transferring genetic information when using different marker technologies. Combined with syntenic approaches, the consensus map will increase marker density in selected genomic regions and will be useful for future faba bean molecular breeding applications. PMID:24377374

  8. Identification of Species, Quantitative Trait Loci (QTLs), and Hybrids Important for Low-Input Biomass Production and Hetersis in Semiarid Cold-Growing Environments

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Interspecific hybrids of tall caespitose Leymus cinereus (Scribn. & Merr.) A. Love and strongly rhizomatous Leymus triticoides (Buckley) Pilg. display a heterotic combination of traits important for perennial grass biomass production. The objectives of this study were to: 1) compare seasonal biomas...

  9. Importance of non CO2 fluxes for agricultural ecosystems - understanding the mechanisms and drivers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klumpp, Katja

    2014-05-01

    In agriculture, a large proportion (about 89%) of greenhouse gas (GHG) emission saving potential may be achieved by means of soil C sequestration. Not surprising that exchange of carbon dioxide (CO2) has been a main research objective during last decades. In spite of this, in agricultural ecosytems (i.e. grassland and croplands) a large proportion of total emissions (about 18% in CO2e worldwide) are linked to non CO2 fluxes (about 50% N2O, 40% CH4 in contraste to 10%CO2). Those emissions are however, diffuse, for example N2O, is emitted on almost all cultivated land, and all humid grasslands emit CH4 related to watertable. However, those emissions can vary largely from one site to another or from one farming system to another, while some studies even report a fixation of CH4 and N2O by grass- and croplands, not to mention the impacts of climate change on fluxes. Finally, given the large number of findings, along with their significant diversity, complicates both estimation of these emissions and the mechanism that the public authorities could implement to encourage their reduction. To determine effective mitigation options, a better knowledge on the drivers of CH4/N2O as well as their temporal and spatial variability are of particular interest. At present, more information is needed on i) the impact of agricultural practices and the contribution of CH4 and N2O to the GHG budgets within contrasting systems, ii) differences among climate regions and climate impacts, and iii) impact of managing soil microbial functioning (through plant diverstiy, litter inputs, etc). This presentation will review recent studies to highlight some new findings on the mentioned topics.

  10. Survival in macaroni penguins and the relative importance of different drivers: individual traits, predation pressure and environmental variability

    PubMed Central

    Horswill, Catharine; Matthiopoulos, Jason; Green, Jonathan A; Meredith, Michael P; Forcada, Jaume; Peat, Helen; Preston, Mark; Trathan, Phil N; Ratcliffe, Norman

    2014-01-01

    Understanding the demographic response of free-living animal populations to different drivers is the first step towards reliable prediction of population trends. Penguins have exhibited dramatic declines in population size, and many studies have linked this to bottom-up processes altering the abundance of prey species. The effects of individual traits have been considered to a lesser extent, and top-down regulation through predation has been largely overlooked due to the difficulties in empirically measuring this at sea where it usually occurs. For 10 years (2003–2012), macaroni penguins (Eudyptes chrysolophus) were marked with subcutaneous electronic transponder tags and re-encountered using an automated gateway system fitted at the entrance to the colony. We used multistate mark–recapture modelling to identify the different drivers influencing survival rates and a sensitivity analysis to assess their relative importance across different life stages. Survival rates were low and variable during the fledging year (mean = 0·33), increasing to much higher levels from age 1 onwards (mean = 0·89). We show that survival of macaroni penguins is driven by a combination of individual quality, top-down predation pressure and bottom-up environmental forces. The relative importance of these covariates was age specific. During the fledging year, survival rates were most sensitive to top-down predation pressure, followed by individual fledging mass, and finally bottom-up environmental effects. In contrast, birds older than 1 year showed a similar response to bottom-up environmental effects and top-down predation pressure. We infer from our results that macaroni penguins will most likely be negatively impacted by an increase in the local population size of giant petrels. Furthermore, this population is, at least in the short term, likely to be positively influenced by local warming. More broadly, our results highlight the importance of considering multiple causal effects across different life stages when examining the survival rates of seabirds. PMID:24846695

  11. The Potential of Pigeonpea (Cajanus cajan) for Producing Important Components of Renewable Energy and Agricultural Products

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gwata, E.

    2012-04-01

    In agricultural systems, sustainable crop production is critical in meeting both environmental requirements and the limitations of drought imposed by the effects of global warming. The inputs for crop production and end use of the products should determine the choice of a crop particularly in environments prone to droughts. The objective of this paper is to highlight why a multi-purpose grain legume such as pigeonpea is an ideal crop that can be utilized for producing renewable energy. Firstly, it is highly tolerant to drought and does not require additional soil moisture after the seedling growth stage. The deep tape root extracts moisture and nutrients from deep layers of the soil concomitantly allowing for efficient nutrient recycling. The piscidic acid which is exuded from the roots enhances the solubilization of phosphorus in order to make it available for plant uptake. Secondly, the grain of pigeonpea is suitable for both human food and feedstocks. The grain is rich in oil, vitamins, minerals and protein. The grain can also be used for producing biofuel. In many countries particularly in the developing world, the stover is used as fuel wood or building (roofing) material, thus alleviating pressure on forest products. The crop is grown without the application of inorganic fertilizers as it can fix atmospheric nitrogen symbiotically in its root nodules. Pigeonpea is also ratoonable, producing two or more harvests per season. In addition, it is grown in mixed cropping systems thus optimizing land use. In these regards, pigeonpea is sustainable and environmentally friendly choice for agricultural production of food and energy balance.

  12. Evolutionary outcomes should inform plant breeding and transgenic approaches to drought tolerance in crop species: the importance of xylem traits

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Genomic-assisted breeding and transgenic approaches to crop improvement are presently targeting phenotypic traits that allegedly confer drought tolerance. A news feature published in Nature Biotechnology last year suggests that these efforts may not be proceeding with sufficient haste, considering t...

  13. Reducing GHG emissions through genetic improvement for feed efficiency: effects on economically important traits and enteric methane production.

    PubMed

    Basarab, J A; Beauchemin, K A; Baron, V S; Ominski, K H; Guan, L L; Miller, S P; Crowley, J J

    2013-06-01

    Genetic selection for residual feed intake (RFI) is an indirect approach for reducing enteric methane (CH4) emissions in beef and dairy cattle. RFI is moderately heritable (0.26 to 0.43), moderately repeatable across diets (0.33 to 0.67) and independent of body size and production, and when adjusted for off-test ultrasound backfat thickness (RFI fat) is also independent of body fatness in growing animals. It is highly dependent on accurate measurement of individual animal feed intake. Within-animal repeatability of feed intake is moderate (0.29 to 0.49) with distinctive diurnal patterns associated with cattle type, diet and genotype, necessitating the recording of feed intake for at least 35 days. In addition, direct measurement of enteric CH4 production will likely be more variable and expensive than measuring feed intake and if conducted should be expressed as CH4 production (g/animal per day) adjusted for body size, growth, body composition and dry matter intake (DMI) or as residual CH4 production. A further disadvantage of a direct CH4 phenotype is that the relationships of enteric CH4 production on other economically important traits are largely unknown. Selection for low RFI fat (efficient, -RFI fat) will result in cattle that consume less dry matter (DMI) and have an improved feed conversion ratio (FCR) compared with high RFI fat cattle (inefficient; +RFI fat). Few antagonistic effects have been reported for the relationships of RFI fat on carcass and meat quality, fertility, cow lifetime productivity and adaptability to stress or extensive grazing conditions. Low RFI fat cattle also produce 15% to 25% less enteric CH4 than +RFI fat cattle, since DMI is positively related to enteric methane (CH4) production. In addition, lower DMI and feeding duration and frequency, and a different rumen bacterial profile that improves rumen fermentation in -RFI fat cattle may favor a 1% to 2% improvement in dry matter and CP digestibility compared with +RFI fat cattle. Rate of genetic change using this approach is expected to improve feed efficiency and reduce enteric CH4 emissions from cattle by 0.75% to 1.0% per year at equal levels of body size, growth and body fatness compared with cattle not selected for RFI fat. PMID:23739472

  14. Projecting Future Nitrous Oxide Emissions From Agriculture: Importance of Ecological Feedbacks and the Environmental Benefits of Improved Nitrogen Use Efficiency

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kanter, D.; Zhang, X.; Shevliakova, E.; Malyshev, S.; Mauzerall, D. L.

    2014-12-01

    Nitrous oxide (N2O) presents a triple threat to the global environment: it is the third most important anthropogenic greenhouse gas, the largest remaining anthropogenic contributor to stratospheric ozone depletion, and an important component of the nitrogen (N) cascade - where one atom of N can interconvert between a number of forms, each with a unique set of environmental impacts. Here we use a dynamic vegetation model (Princeton-Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Lab (GFDL) LM3 - the interactive land component of the GFDL Earth System Model) to assess how changes in future climate, land-use, and global fertilizer and manure application are projected to affect global N2O emissions from agriculture by 2050. Agricultural land is defined in this study as the sum of cropland and pasture. In a baseline scenario assuming little improvement in global N use efficiency (NUE) by 2050, the model projects a 24-31% increase in global agricultural N2O emissions (with the uncertainty range stemming from differences in climate forcing, land-use and fertilizer and manure consumption between RCP2.6 and RCP8.5, the two climate scenarios used in this study) - rising from 2.9 Tg N2O-N yr-1 in 1990-2000 to 3.6-3.8 Tg N2O-N yr-1 in 2040-2050. This emission increase is considerably less than the projected increases in global fertilizer and manure consumption (42-44%) and previously published projections of global agricultural N2O emission increases (38-75% - again, the uncertainty range reflecting the differences between the climate scenarios used). This disparity appears to be a result of ecological feedbacks captured by the model, where a considerable portion of the increase in fertilizer and manure use is absorbed by agricultural plant biomass rather than lost to the environment. In addition to this dynamic, the model projects that improvements in global NUE of 20-50% could reduce global N2O emissions significantly, delivering important climate and stratospheric ozone benefits over the period 2015-2050: avoiding up to 9.9 Gt CO2 eq. and 567 ODP kt, respectively. This is equivalent to about two years of the CO2 emissions of all the passenger cars currently on the road and 25-35% of the potential reductions from the destruction of the remaining recoverable stocks of other ozone depleting substances.

  15. Relative importance of water chemistry and habitat to fish communities in headwater streams influenced by agricultural land use

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Channelized headwater streams are common throughout agricultural watersheds in the Midwestern United States. Understanding the relative impacts of agricultural contaminants and habitat degradation on the aquatic biota within agricultural headwater streams will provide information that can assist wi...

  16. The Importance of Selected Instructional Areas in the Present and Future Secondary Agricultural Education Curriculum as Perceived by Teachers, Principals, and Superintendents in Nebraska.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Foster, Rick; And Others

    1995-01-01

    A 1989-90 survey received 381 responses from Nebraska agriculture teachers, principals, and superintendents in which they rated agricultural economics, marketing, and computers as important current topics; leadership, personal development, agribusiness management, and natural resources were important future topics. Most had a cautious, low-risk

  17. U.S. Irrigation. Extent and Economic Importance. Agriculture Information Bulletin Number 523.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Day, John C.; Horner, Gerald L.

    Data for the years 1974, 1978, 1982, and 1984 are used to identify the principal features of irrigated farming in the United States and to assess the importance of irrigation to the farm economy. Irrigation of U.S. acreage declined 5.6 million acres between 1978 and 1984 to 44.7 million acres. In 1982 irrigated acreage represented 6 percent of the

  18. Comparisons of diazotrophic communities in native and agricultural desert ecosystems reveal plants as important drivers in diversity

    PubMed Central

    Köberl, Martina; Erlacher, Armin; Ramadan, Elshahat M.; El-Arabi, Tarek F.; Müller, Henry; Bragina, Anastasia; Berg, Gabriele

    2015-01-01

    Diazotrophs provide the only biological source of fixed atmospheric nitrogen in the biosphere. Although they are the key player for plant-available nitrogen, less is known about their diversity and potential importance in arid ecosystems. We investigated the nitrogenase gene diversity in native and agricultural desert soil as well as within root-associated microbiota of medicinal plants grown in Egypt through the combination of nifH-specific qPCR, fingerprints, amplicon pyrosequencing and fluorescence in situ hybridization–confocal laser scanning microscopy. Although the diazotrophic microbiota were characterized by generally high abundances and diversity, statistically significant differences were found between both soils, the different microhabitats, and between the investigated plants (Matricaria chamomilla L., Calendula officinalis L. and Solanum distichum Schumach. and Thonn.). We observed a considerable community shift from desert to agriculturally used soil that demonstrated a higher abundance and diversity in the agro-ecosystem. The endorhiza was characterized by lower abundances and only a subset of species when compared to the rhizosphere. While the microbiomes of the Asteraceae were similar and dominated by potential root-nodulating rhizobia acquired primarily from soil, the perennial S. distichum generally formed associations with free-living nitrogen fixers. These results underline the importance of diazotrophs in desert ecosystems and additionally identify plants as important drivers in functional gene pool diversity. PMID:26705571

  19. Macrophyte communities as an important seasonal sink for P and N in an urban and agricultural watershed in Southern Ontario.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hood, J. L.; Taylor, W. D.; Schiff, S.

    2009-05-01

    Riverine macrophytes and macroalgae are important to riverine nutrient cycling processes, and can often reach nuisance levels of biomass in agriculturally and urban impacted streams. Elevated biomass can result in lowered dissolved oxygen conditions and enhanced anaerobic processes which create problems for riverine biota and for human uses of the water resource, as well may allow for enhancement of N2O and CH4 production. Controlling and removing macrophyte and macroalgal biomass has been an endeavor of river managers for several decades, however stands may represent a large seasonal sink for inorganic forms of N and P. Rivers are heterogeneous environments, which complicate studies of primary productivity, thus spatial variations within riverine systems are important to consider for developing an understanding of benthic vegetation and it's impact on oxygen, phosphorus and nitrogen cycling. Here we present multi-year spatial data on submersed macrophyte communties in the Grand River watershed (Southern Ontario), a heavily populated urban and agricultural watershed, and demonstrate that macrophyte communities represent an important seasonal sink for nutrients P and N. We also give a watershed wide estimate for the temporary nutrient storage capacity of nutrients by macrophyte communities in this system.

  20. Comparisons of diazotrophic communities in native and agricultural desert ecosystems reveal plants as important drivers in diversity.

    PubMed

    Köberl, Martina; Erlacher, Armin; Ramadan, Elshahat M; El-Arabi, Tarek F; Müller, Henry; Bragina, Anastasia; Berg, Gabriele

    2016-02-01

    Diazotrophs provide the only biological source of fixed atmospheric nitrogen in the biosphere. Although they are the key player for plant-available nitrogen, less is known about their diversity and potential importance in arid ecosystems. We investigated the nitrogenase gene diversity in native and agricultural desert soil as well as within root-associated microbiota of medicinal plants grown in Egypt through the combination of nifH-specific qPCR, fingerprints, amplicon pyrosequencing and fluorescence in situ hybridization-confocal laser scanning microscopy. Although the diazotrophic microbiota were characterized by generally high abundances and diversity, statistically significant differences were found between both soils, the different microhabitats, and between the investigated plants (Matricaria chamomilla L., Calendula officinalis L. and Solanum distichum Schumach. and Thonn.). We observed a considerable community shift from desert to agriculturally used soil that demonstrated a higher abundance and diversity in the agro-ecosystem. The endorhiza was characterized by lower abundances and only a subset of species when compared to the rhizosphere. While the microbiomes of the Asteraceae were similar and dominated by potential root-nodulating rhizobia acquired primarily from soil, the perennial S. distichum generally formed associations with free-living nitrogen fixers. These results underline the importance of diazotrophs in desert ecosystems and additionally identify plants as important drivers in functional gene pool diversity. PMID:26705571

  1. Exploring the evolutionary ecology of fungal endophyte in agricultural systems: using functional traits to reveal mechanisms in community processes

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    All plants, including crop species, harbor a community of fungal endophyte species, however, we know little about the biotic factors that are important in endophyte community assembly. We suggest that the most direct route to understanding the mechanisms underlying community assembly is through the...

  2. Association of N2-fixing cyanobacteria and plants: towards novel symbioses of agricultural importance

    SciTech Connect

    Elhai, Jeff

    2001-06-25

    Some nitrogen-fixing cyanobacteria are able to form symbioses with a wide variety of plants. Nostoc 2S9B is unusual in its ability to infect the roots of wheat, raising the prospect of a productive association with an important crop plant. The goal of the project was to lay the groundwork for the use of novel associations between Nostoc and crops of agronomic importance, thereby reducing our reliance on nitrogenous fertilizer. Nostoc 2S9B was found to enter roots through mechanical damage of roots and reside primarily in intercellular spaces. The strain could also be incorporated into wheat calli grown in tissue culture. In both cases, the rate of nitrogen fixation by the cyanobacterium was higher than that of the same strain grown with no plant present. Artificial nodules induced by the action of hormone 2,4D were readily infected by Nostoc 2S9B, and the cyanobacteria within such nodules fixed nitrogen under fully aerobic conditions. The nitrogen fixed was shown to be incorporated into the growing wheat seedlings. Nostoc thus differs from other bacteria in its ability to fix nitrogen in para-nodules without need for artificially microaerobic conditions. It would be useful to introduce foreign DNA into Nostoc 2S9B in order to make defined mutations to understand the genetic basis of its ability to infect wheat and to create strains that might facilitate the study of the infection process. Transfer of DNA into the cyanobacterium appears to be limited by the presence of four restriction enzymes, with recognition sequences the same as BamHI, BglI, BsaHI, and Tth111I. Genes encoding methyltransferases that protect DNA against these four enzymes have been cloned into helper plasmids to allow transfer of DNA from E. coli to Nostoc 2S9B.

  3. Cadmium contamination in Tianjin agricultural soils and sediments: relative importance of atmospheric deposition from coal combustion.

    PubMed

    Wu, Guanghong; Yang, Cancan; Guo, Lan; Wang, Zhongliang

    2013-06-01

    Cadmium (Cd) in coal, fly ash, slag, atmospheric deposition, soils and sediments collected from Tianjin, northern China, were measured to provide baseline information and determine possible Cd sources and potential risk. The concentrations of Cd in coal, fly ash and atmospheric deposition were much higher than the soil background values. Fallout from coal-fired thermal power plants, heating boilers and industrial furnaces has increased the Cd concentration in soils and sediments in Tianjin. The concentrations of Cd in soils of suburban areas were significantly higher than in rural areas, suggesting that coal burning in Tianjin may have an important impact on the local physical environment. Cd from coal combustion is readily mobilized in soils. It is soluble and can form aqueous complexes and permeate river sediments. The high proportion of mobile Cd affects the migration of Cd in soils and sediments, which may pose an environmental threat in Tianjin due to the exposure to Cd and Cd compounds via the food chain. This study may provide a window for understanding and tracing sources of Cd in the local environment and the risk associated with Cd bioaccessibility. PMID:23212535

  4. Bovine tuberculosis (Mycobacterium bovis) in British farmland wildlife: the importance to agriculture.

    PubMed

    Mathews, Fiona; Macdonald, David W; Taylor, G Michael; Gelling, Merryl; Norman, Rachel A; Honess, Paul E; Foster, Rebecca; Gower, Charlotte M; Varley, Susan; Harris, Audrey; Palmer, Simonette; Hewinson, Glyn; Webster, Joanne P

    2006-02-01

    Bovine tuberculosis (bTB) is an important disease of cattle and an emerging infectious disease of humans. Cow- and badger-based control strategies have failed to eradicate bTB from the British cattle herd, and the incidence is rising by about 18%per year. The annual cost to taxpayers in Britain is currently 74 million UK pounds. Research has focused on the badger as a potential bTB reservoir, with little attention being paid to other mammals common on farmland. We have conducted a systematic survey of wild mammals (n=4393 individuals) present on dairy farms to explore the role of species other than badgers in the epidemiology of bTB. Cultures were prepared from 10397 samples (primarily faeces, urine and tracheal aspirates). One of the 1307 bank voles (Clethrionomys glareolus) live-sampled, and three of the 43 badgers (Meles meles), yielded positive isolates of Mycobacterium bovis. This is the first time the bacterium has been isolated from the bank vole. The strain type was the same as that found in cattle and badgers on the same farm. However, our work indicates that the mean prevalence of infectious individuals among common farmland wildlife is extremely low (the upper 95% confidence interval is < or =2.0 for all of the abundant species). Mathematical models illustrate that it is highly unlikely the disease could be maintained at such low levels. Our results suggest that these animals are relatively unimportant as reservoirs of bTB, having insufficient within-species (or within-group) transmission to sustain the infection, though occasional spill-overs from cattle or badgers may occur. PMID:16543179

  5. Bovine tuberculosis (Mycobacterium bovis) in British farmland wildlife: the importance to agriculture

    PubMed Central

    Mathews, Fiona; Macdonald, David W; Taylor, G. Michael; Gelling, Merryl; Norman, Rachel A; Honess, Paul E; Foster, Rebecca; Gower, Charlotte M; Varley, Susan; Harris, Audrey; Palmer, Simonette; Hewinson, Glyn; Webster, Joanne P

    2005-01-01

    Bovine tuberculosis (bTB) is an important disease of cattle and an emerging infectious disease of humans. Cow- and badger-based control strategies have failed to eradicate bTB from the British cattle herd, and the incidence is rising by about 18%?per year. The annual cost to taxpayers in Britain is currently 74 million. Research has focused on the badger as a potential bTB reservoir, with little attention being paid to other mammals common on farmland. We have conducted a systematic survey of wild mammals (n=4393 individuals) present on dairy farms to explore the role of species other than badgers in the epidemiology of bTB. Cultures were prepared from 10?397 samples (primarily faeces, urine and tracheal aspirates). One of the 1307 bank voles (Clethrionomys glareolus) live-sampled, and three of the 43 badgers (Meles meles), yielded positive isolates of Mycobacterium bovis. This is the first time the bacterium has been isolated from the bank vole. The strain type was the same as that found in cattle and badgers on the same farm. However, our work indicates that the mean prevalence of infectious individuals among common farmland wildlife is extremely low (the upper 95% confidence interval is ?2.0 for all of the abundant species). Mathematical models illustrate that it is highly unlikely the disease could be maintained at such low levels. Our results suggest that these animals are relatively unimportant as reservoirs of bTB, having insufficient within-species (or within-group) transmission to sustain the infection, though occasional spill-overs from cattle or badgers may occur. PMID:16543179

  6. Importance of agricultural landscapes to nesting burrowing owls in the Northern Great Plains, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Restani, M.; Davies, J.M.; Newton, W.E.

    2008-01-01

    Anthropogenic habitat loss and fragmentation are the principle factors causing declines of grassland birds. Declines in burrowing owl (Athene cunicularia) populations have been extensive and have been linked to habitat loss, primarily the decline of black-tailed prairie dog (Cynomys ludovicianus) colonies. Development of habitat use models is a research priority and will aid conservation of owls inhabiting human-altered landscapes. From 2001 to 2004 we located 160 burrowing owl nests on prairie dog colonies on the Little Missouri National Grassland in North Dakota. We used multiple linear regression and Akaike's Information Criterion to estimate the relationship between cover type characteristics surrounding prairie dog colonies and (1) number of owl pairs per colony and (2) reproductive success. Models were developed for two spatial scales, within 600 m and 2,000 m radii of nests for cropland, crested wheatgrass (Agropyron cristatum), grassland, and prairie dog colonies. We also included number of patches as a metric of landscape fragmentation. Annually, fewer than 30% of prairie dog colonies were occupied by owls. None of the models at the 600 m scale explained variation in number of owl pairs or reproductive success. However, models at the 2,000 m scale did explain number of owl pairs and reproductive success. Models included cropland, crested wheatgrass, and prairie dog colonies. Grasslands were not included in any of the models and had low importance values, although percentage grassland surrounding colonies was high. Management that protects prairie dog colonies bordering cropland and crested wheatgrass should be implemented to maintain nesting habitat of burrowing owls. ?? 2008 Springer Science+Business Media B.V.

  7. The Influence of Organized Physical Activity (Including Gymnastics) on Young Adult Skeletal Traits: Is Maturity Phase Important?

    PubMed

    Bernardoni, Brittney; Scerpella, Tamara A; Rosenbaum, Paula F; Kanaley, Jill A; Raab, Lindsay N; Li, Quefeng; Wang, Sijian; Dowthwaite, Jodi N

    2015-05-01

    We prospectively evaluated adolescent organized physical activity (PA) as a factor in adult female bone traits. Annual DXA scans accompanied semiannual records of anthropometry, maturity, and PA for 42 participants in this preliminary analysis (criteria: appropriately timed DXA scans at ~1 year premenarche [predictor] and ~5 years postmenarche [dependent variable]). Regression analysis evaluated total adolescent interscan PA and PA over 3 maturity subphases as predictors of young adult bone outcomes: 1) bone mineral content (BMC), geometry, and strength indices at nondominant distal radius and femoral neck; 2) subhead BMC; 3) lumbar spine BMC. Analyses accounted for baseline gynecological age (years pre- or postmenarche), baseline bone status, adult body size and interscan body size change. Gymnastics training was evaluated as a potentially independent predictor, but did not improve models for any outcomes (p > .07). Premenarcheal bone traits were strong predictors of most adult outcomes (semipartial r2 = .21-0.59, p ≤ .001). Adult 1/3 radius and subhead BMC were predicted by both total PA and PA 1-3 years postmenarche (p < .03). PA 3-5 years postmenarche predicted femoral narrow neck width, endosteal diameter, and buckling ratio (p < .05). Thus, participation in organized physical activity programs throughout middle and high school may reduce lifetime fracture risk in females. PMID:25386845

  8. Targeted Analysis Reveals an Important Role of JAK-STAT-SOCS Genes for Milk Production Traits in Australian Dairy Cattle

    PubMed Central

    Arun, Sondur J.; Thomson, Peter C.; Sheehy, Paul A.; Khatkar, Mehar S.; Raadsma, Herman W.; Williamson, Peter

    2015-01-01

    The Janus kinase and signal transducer and activator of transcription (JAK-STAT) pathway genes along with suppressors of cytokine signalling (SOCS) family genes play a crucial role in controlling cytokine signals in the mammary gland and thus mammary gland development. Mammary gene expression studies showed differential expression patterns for all the JAK-STAT pathway genes. Gene expression studies using qRT-PCR revealed differential expression of SOCS2, SOCS4, and SOCS5 genes across the lactation cycle in dairy cows. Using genotypes from 1,546 Australian Holstein-Friesian bulls, a statistical model for an association analysis based on SNPs within 500 kb of JAK-STAT pathway genes, and SOCS genes alone was constructed. The analysis suggested that these genes and pathways make a significant contribution to the Australian milk production traits. There were 24 SNPs close to SOCS1, SOCS3, SOCS5, SOCS7, and CISH genes that were significantly associated with Australian Profit Ranking (APR), Australian Selection Index (ASI), and protein yield (PY). This study supports the view that there may be some merit in choosing SNPs around functionally relevant genes for the selection and genetic improvement schemes for dairy production traits. PMID:26697059

  9. Molecular variants and clinical importance of beta-thalassaemia traits found in the state of Orissa, India.

    PubMed

    Nishank, Sudhansu Sekhar; Ranjit, Manoranjan; Kar, Shantanu K; Chhotray, Guru Prasad

    2009-10-01

    Prevention of beta thalassaemia implies knowledge of the molecular spectrum occurring in the population at risk. This knowledge is necessary, especially when a prevention protocol is applied to a multiethnic population. For this purpose, we carried out molecular analysis of 431 beta thalassaemia subjects belonging to tribal (aboriginal) and non-tribal communities of Orissa, a part of peninsular India and found six types of mutation (four previously unreported and two reported). Molecular analysis of beta gene mutation showed that out of 431 beta thalassaemia cases (265 beta thalassaemia traits, 64 beta thalassaemia major, 47 haemoglobin E-beta thalassaemia, 55 haemoglobin S-beta thalassaemia cases), 71% of cases (n=306) showed the IVS I-5(G-->C) mutation, 12% of cases (n=52) showed FS 41/42(-CTTT), 7% of cases (n=30) showed CD 15(G-->A), 4.8% of cases (n=21) showed CD 30 (G-->C), 3% of cases (n=13) showed FS 8/9 (+G), and 2% of cases (n=9) showed IVSI-1(G-->T). The tribal populations possess only the IVS I-5(G-->C) mutation whereas the non-tribal groups possess the FS 41/42(-CTTT), FS 8/9 (+G), IVS I-1(G-->T), CD30(G-->C) and IVS I-5(G-->C) mutations. Among the non-tribal communities, Muslims did not have the IVS I-1 (G-->T) mutation. Clinically, anaemia was mild to moderate in beta thalassaemia trait and was found to be associated with the majority of abnormalities such as pyrexial episodes, fatigue, headache, lethargy and pallor. However, there were no differences in the incidence of clinical abnormalities between tribal and non-tribal populations and also among the different molecular variants of beta gene. This is the first report from Orissa on the prevalence of different molecular variants of beta thalassaemia. The clinical presentation of beta thalassaemia trait cases and their variation from other population have been discussed with reference to the different genetic variants. PMID:19843386

  10. Estimation of soil erosion risk within an important agricultural sub-watershed in Bursa, Turkey, in relation to rapid urbanization.

    PubMed

    Ozsoy, Gokhan; Aksoy, Ertugrul

    2015-07-01

    This paper integrates the Revised Universal Soil Loss Equation (RUSLE) with a GIS model to investigate the spatial distribution of annual soil loss and identify areas of soil erosion risk in the Uluabat sub-watershed, an important agricultural site in Bursa Province, Turkey. The total soil loss from water erosion was 473,274 Mg year(-1). Accordingly, 60.3% of the surveyed area was classified into a very low erosion risk class while 25.7% was found to be in high and severe erosion risk classes. Soil loss had a close relationship with land use and topography. The most severe erosion risk typically occurs on ridges and steep slopes where agriculture, degraded forest, and shrubs are the main land uses and cover types. Another goal of this study was to use GIS to reveal the multi-year urbanization status caused by rapid urbanization that constitutes another soil erosion risk in this area. Urbanization has increased by 57.7% and the most areal change was determined in class I lands at a rate of 80% over 25 years. Urbanization was identified as one of the causes of excessive soil loss in the study area. PMID:26059559

  11. SEED DORMANCY, AGRICULTURAL IMPORTANCE

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Technical Seed dormancy has been defined as the temporary failure of a viable seed to germinate, after a specific length of time, in a particular set of environmental conditions that later evoke germination when the restrictive state has been terminated by either natural or artificial conditions. S...

  12. Predicting the impacts of climate change on animal distributions: the importance of local adaptation and species' traits

    SciTech Connect

    HELLMANN, J. J.; LOBO, N. F.

    2011-12-20

    The geographic range limits of many species are strongly affected by climate and are expected to change under global warming. For species that are able to track changing climate over broad geographic areas, we expect to see shifts in species distributions toward the poles and away from the equator. A number of ecological and evolutionary factors, however, could restrict this shifting or redistribution under climate change. These factors include restricted habitat availability, restricted capacity for or barriers to movement, or reduced abundance of colonists due the perturbation effect of climate change. This research project examined the last of these constraints - that climate change could perturb local conditions to which populations are adapted, reducing the likelihood that a species will shift its distribution by diminishing the number of potential colonists. In the most extreme cases, species ranges could collapse over a broad geographic area with no poleward migration and an increased risk of species extinction. Changes in individual species ranges are the processes that drive larger phenomena such as changes in land cover, ecosystem type, and even changes in carbon cycling. For example, consider the poleward range shift and population outbreaks of the mountain pine beetle that has decimated millions of acres of Douglas fir trees in the western US and Canada. Standing dead trees cause forest fires and release vast quantities of carbon to the atmosphere. The beetle likely shifted its range because it is not locally adapted across its range, and it appears to be limited by winter low temperatures that have steadily increased in the last decades. To understand range and abundance changes like the pine beetle, we must reveal the extent of adaptive variation across species ranges - and the physiological basis of that adaptation - to know if other species will change as readily as the pine beetle. Ecologists tend to assume that range shifts are the dominant response of species to climate change, but our experiments suggest that other processes may act in some species that reduce the likelihood of geographic range change. In the first part of our DOE grant (ending 2008) we argued that the process of local adaptation of populations within a species range, followed by climatic changes that occur too quickly for adaptive evolution, is an underappreciated mechanism by which climate change could affect biodiversity. When this process acts, species ranges may not shift readily toward the poles, slowing the rate of species and biome change. To test this claim, we performed an experiment comparing core and peripheral populations in a series of field observations, translocation experiments, and genetic analyses. The papers in Appendix A were generated from 2005-2008 funding. In the second part of the DOE grant (ending 2011) we studied which traits promote population differentiation and local adaptation by building genomic resources for our study species and using these resources to reveal differences in gene expression in peripheral and core populations. The papers in Appendix B were generated from 2008-2011 funding. This work was pursued with two butterfly species that have contrasting life history traits (body size and resource specialization) and occupy a common ecosystem and a latitudinal range. These species enabled us to test the following hypotheses using a single phylogenetic group.

  13. Integrated Physiological, Biochemical, and Molecular Analysis Identifies Important Traits and Mechanisms Associated with Differential Response of Rice Genotypes to Elevated Temperature

    PubMed Central

    Sailaja, Boghireddy; Subrahmanyam, Desiraju; Neelamraju, Sarla; Vishnukiran, Turaga; Rao, Yadavalli Venkateswara; Vijayalakshmi, Pujarula; Voleti, Sitapati R.; Bhadana, Vijai P.; Mangrauthia, Satendra K.

    2015-01-01

    In changing climatic conditions, heat stress caused by high temperature poses a serious threat to rice cultivation. A multiple organizational analysis at physiological, biochemical, and molecular levels is required to fully understand the impact of elevated temperature in rice. This study was aimed at deciphering the elevated temperature response in 11 popular and mega rice cultivars widely grown in India. Physiological and biochemical traits specifically membrane thermostability (MTS), antioxidants, and photosynthesis were studied at vegetative and reproductive phases, which were used to establish a correlation with grain yield under stress. Several useful traits in different genotypes were identified, which will be an important resource to develop high temperature-tolerant rice cultivars. Interestingly, Nagina22 emerged as the best performer in terms of yield as well as expression of physiological and biochemical traits at elevated temperature. It showed lesser relative injury, lesser reduction in chlorophyll content, increased super oxide dismutase, catalase and peroxidase activities, lesser reduction in net photosynthetic rate (PN), high transpiration rate (E), and other photosynthetic/fluorescence parameters contributing to least reduction in spikelet fertility and grain yield at elevated temperature. Furthermore, expression of 14 genes including heat shock transcription factors and heat shock proteins was analyzed in Nagina22 (tolerant) and Vandana (susceptible) at flowering phase, strengthening the fact that N22 performed better at molecular level also during elevated temperature. This study shows that elevated temperature response is complex and involves multiple biological processes that are needed to be characterized to address the challenges of extreme conditions of future climate. PMID:26640473

  14. 76 FR 20305 - Consultative Group To Eliminate the Use of Child Labor and Forced Labor in Imported Agricultural...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-04-12

    ... Guidelines for Eliminating Child and Forced Labor in Agricultural Supply Chains. SUMMARY: Notice is hereby... labor and the worst forms of child labor in agricultural supply chains. We are interested to receive... processes and/or those of its suppliers. Supplier--Any organization or individual in the supply chain of...

  15. A high-density consensus map of barley linking DArT markers to SSR, RFLP and STS loci and agricultural traits

    PubMed Central

    Wenzl, Peter; Li, Haobing; Carling, Jason; Zhou, Meixue; Raman, Harsh; Paul, Edie; Hearnden, Phillippa; Maier, Christina; Xia, Ling; Caig, Vanessa; Ovesn, Jaroslava; Cakir, Mehmet; Poulsen, David; Wang, Junping; Raman, Rosy; Smith, Kevin P; Muehlbauer, Gary J; Chalmers, Ken J; Kleinhofs, Andris; Huttner, Eric; Kilian, Andrzej

    2006-01-01

    Background Molecular marker technologies are undergoing a transition from largely serial assays measuring DNA fragment sizes to hybridization-based technologies with high multiplexing levels. Diversity Arrays Technology (DArT) is a hybridization-based technology that is increasingly being adopted by barley researchers. There is a need to integrate the information generated by DArT with previous data produced with gel-based marker technologies. The goal of this study was to build a high-density consensus linkage map from the combined datasets of ten populations, most of which were simultaneously typed with DArT and Simple Sequence Repeat (SSR), Restriction Enzyme Fragment Polymorphism (RFLP) and/or Sequence Tagged Site (STS) markers. Results The consensus map, built using a combination of JoinMap 3.0 software and several purpose-built perl scripts, comprised 2,935 loci (2,085 DArT, 850 other loci) and spanned 1,161 cM. It contained a total of 1,629 'bins' (unique loci), with an average inter-bin distance of 0.7 1.0 cM (median = 0.3 cM). More than 98% of the map could be covered with a single DArT assay. The arrangement of loci was very similar to, and almost as optimal as, the arrangement of loci in component maps built for individual populations. The locus order of a synthetic map derived from merging the component maps without considering the segregation data was only slightly inferior. The distribution of loci along chromosomes indicated centromeric suppression of recombination in all chromosomes except 5H. DArT markers appeared to have a moderate tendency toward hypomethylated, gene-rich regions in distal chromosome areas. On the average, 14 9 DArT loci were identified within 5 cM on either side of SSR, RFLP or STS loci previously identified as linked to agricultural traits. Conclusion Our barley consensus map provides a framework for transferring genetic information between different marker systems and for deploying DArT markers in molecular breeding schemes. The study also highlights the need for improved software for building consensus maps from high-density segregation data of multiple populations. PMID:16904008

  16. Contrasting responses of root morphology and root-exuded organic acids to low phosphorus availability in three important food crops with divergent root traits.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yan-Liang; Almvik, Marit; Clarke, Nicholas; Eich-Greatorex, Susanne; Øgaard, Anne Falk; Krogstad, Tore; Lambers, Hans; Clarke, Jihong Liu

    2015-01-01

    Phosphorus (P) is an important element for crop productivity and is widely applied in fertilizers. Most P fertilizers applied to land are sorbed onto soil particles, so research on improving plant uptake of less easily available P is important. In the current study, we investigated the responses in root morphology and root-exuded organic acids (OAs) to low available P (1 μM P) and sufficient P (50 μM P) in barley, canola and micropropagated seedlings of potato-three important food crops with divergent root traits, using a hydroponic plant growth system. We hypothesized that the dicots canola and tuber-producing potato and the monocot barley would respond differently under various P availabilities. WinRHIZO and liquid chromatography triple quadrupole mass spectrometry results suggested that under low P availability, canola developed longer roots and exhibited the fastest root exudation rate for citric acid. Barley showed a reduction in root length and root surface area and an increase in root-exuded malic acid under low-P conditions. Potato exuded relatively small amounts of OAs under low P, while there was a marked increase in root tips. Based on the results, we conclude that different crops show divergent morphological and physiological responses to low P availability, having evolved specific traits of root morphology and root exudation that enhance their P-uptake capacity under low-P conditions. These results could underpin future efforts to improve P uptake of the three crops that are of importance for future sustainable crop production. PMID:26286222

  17. Contrasting responses of root morphology and root-exuded organic acids to low phosphorus availability in three important food crops with divergent root traits

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Yan-Liang; Almvik, Marit; Clarke, Nicholas; Eich-Greatorex, Susanne; Øgaard, Anne Falk; Krogstad, Tore; Lambers, Hans; Clarke, Jihong Liu

    2015-01-01

    Phosphorus (P) is an important element for crop productivity and is widely applied in fertilizers. Most P fertilizers applied to land are sorbed onto soil particles, so research on improving plant uptake of less easily available P is important. In the current study, we investigated the responses in root morphology and root-exuded organic acids (OAs) to low available P (1 μM P) and sufficient P (50 μM P) in barley, canola and micropropagated seedlings of potato—three important food crops with divergent root traits, using a hydroponic plant growth system. We hypothesized that the dicots canola and tuber-producing potato and the monocot barley would respond differently under various P availabilities. WinRHIZO and liquid chromatography triple quadrupole mass spectrometry results suggested that under low P availability, canola developed longer roots and exhibited the fastest root exudation rate for citric acid. Barley showed a reduction in root length and root surface area and an increase in root-exuded malic acid under low-P conditions. Potato exuded relatively small amounts of OAs under low P, while there was a marked increase in root tips. Based on the results, we conclude that different crops show divergent morphological and physiological responses to low P availability, having evolved specific traits of root morphology and root exudation that enhance their P-uptake capacity under low-P conditions. These results could underpin future efforts to improve P uptake of the three crops that are of importance for future sustainable crop production. PMID:26286222

  18. Climate impacts on European agriculture and water management in the context of adaptation and mitigation--the importance of an integrated approach.

    PubMed

    Falloon, Pete; Betts, Richard

    2010-11-01

    We review and qualitatively assess the importance of interactions and feedbacks in assessing climate change impacts on water and agriculture in Europe. We focus particularly on the impact of future hydrological changes on agricultural greenhouse gas (GHG) mitigation and adaptation options. Future projected trends in European agriculture include northward movement of crop suitability zones and increasing crop productivity in Northern Europe, but declining productivity and suitability in Southern Europe. This may be accompanied by a widening of water resource differences between the North and South, and an increase in extreme rainfall events and droughts. Changes in future hydrology and water management practices will influence agricultural adaptation measures and alter the effectiveness of agricultural mitigation strategies. These interactions are often highly complex and influenced by a number of factors which are themselves influenced by climate. Mainly positive impacts may be anticipated for Northern Europe, where agricultural adaptation may be shaped by reduced vulnerability of production, increased water supply and reduced water demand. However, increasing flood hazards may present challenges for agriculture, and summer irrigation shortages may result from earlier spring runoff peaks in some regions. Conversely, the need for effective adaptation will be greatest in Southern Europe as a result of increased production vulnerability, reduced water supply and increased demands for irrigation. Increasing flood and drought risks will further contribute to the need for robust management practices. The impacts of future hydrological changes on agricultural mitigation in Europe will depend on the balance between changes in productivity and rates of decomposition and GHG emission, both of which depend on climatic, land and management factors. Small increases in European soil organic carbon (SOC) stocks per unit land area are anticipated considering changes in climate, management and land use, although an overall reduction in the total stock may result from a smaller agricultural land area. Adaptation in the water sector could potentially provide additional benefits to agricultural production such as reduced flood risk and increased drought resilience. The two main sources of uncertainty in climate impacts on European agriculture and water management are projections of future climate and their resulting impacts on water and agriculture. Since changes in climate, agricultural ecosystems and hydrometeorology depend on complex interactions between the atmosphere, biosphere and hydrological cycle there is a need for more integrated approaches to climate impacts assessments. Methods for assessing options which "moderate" the impact of agriculture in the wider sense will also need to consider cross-sectoral impacts and socio-economic aspects. PMID:19501386

  19. Predicting dangerousness with two Millon Adolescent Clinical Inventory psychopathy scales: the importance of egocentric and callous traits.

    PubMed

    Salekin, Randall T; Ziegler, Tracey A; Larrea, Maria A; Anthony, Virginia Lee; Bennett, Allyson D

    2003-04-01

    Psychopathy in youth has received increased recognition as a critical clinical construct for the evaluation and management of adolescents who have come into contact with the law (e.g., Forth, Hare, & Hart, 1990; Frick, 1998; Lynam, 1996, 1998). Although considerable attention has been devoted to the adult construct of psychopathy and its relation to recidivism, psychopathy in adolescents has been less thoroughly researched. Recently, a psychopathy scale (Murrie and Cornell Psychopathy Scale; Murrie & Cornell, 2000) was developed from items of the Millon Adolescent Clinical Inventory (MACI; Millon, 1993). This scale was found to be highly related to the Psychopathy Checklist-Revised (Hare, 1991) and was judged to have demonstrated good criterion validity. A necessary step in the validation process of any psychopathy scale is establishing its predictive validity. With this in mind, we investigated the ability of the MACI Psychopathy Scale to predict recidivism with 55 adolescent offenders 2 years after they had been evaluated at a juvenile court evaluation unit. In addition, we devised a psychopathy scale from MACI items that aligned more closely with Cooke and Michie (2001) and Frick, Bodin, and Barry's (2001) recommendations for the refinement of psychopathy and tested its predictive validity. Results indicate that both scales had predictive utility. Interpersonal and affective components of the revised scale were particularly important in the prediction of both general and violent reoffending. PMID:12700018

  20. Importance of ATM gene as a susceptible trait: predisposition role of D1853N polymorphism in breast cancer.

    PubMed

    Mehdipour, Parvin; Mahdavi, Marzieh; Mohammadi-Asl, Javad; Atri, Morteza

    2011-09-01

    The involvement of ATM gene and specifically, the important role of D1853N polymorphism, as a three-hit hypothesis has been previously reported in an Iranian proband affected with brain tumor and this polymorphism could be screened in her relatives as well. The aim of present study was to investigate the involvement of D1853N polymorphism as a predisposition factor in 129 Iranian patients affected with primary breast cancer and 248 sex- and age-matched healthy controls. Mutant allele-specific PCR amplification (MASA) assay was performed to analyze the D1853N polymorphism in the ATM gene. The frequency of D1853N polymorphism in cases, internal and external controls was 31.0% (40/129), 26.9% (28/104) and 12.5% (18/144), respectively. The frequency of D1853N in total control groups, including normal external control and pedigree internal control, was 18.6% (46/248). The odds ratio was calculated with the logistic regression test, with an estimated relative risk of 2.579 (P=0.005). The significant difference was observed between the patient-carriers of this alteration and external controls (P=0.001). The number of controls harboring D1853N polymorphism was higher in internal control compared to external controls, and the difference was statistically significant (P=0.004). The significant difference was observed between the patient-carriers and external controls and could be considered as a predisposing and diagnostic marker in the population and specifically in the cancer-prone pedigrees. PMID:20396981

  1. Water deficit alters differentially metabolic pathways affecting important flavor and quality traits in grape berries of Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay

    PubMed Central

    Deluc, Laurent G; Quilici, David R; Decendit, Alain; Grimplet, Jérôme; Wheatley, Matthew D; Schlauch, Karen A; Mérillon, Jean-Michel; Cushman, John C; Cramer, Grant R

    2009-01-01

    Background Water deficit has significant effects on grape berry composition resulting in improved wine quality by the enhancement of color, flavors, or aromas. While some pathways or enzymes affected by water deficit have been identified, little is known about the global effects of water deficit on grape berry metabolism. Results The effects of long-term, seasonal water deficit on berries of Cabernet Sauvignon, a red-wine grape, and Chardonnay, a white-wine grape were analyzed by integrated transcript and metabolite profiling. Over the course of berry development, the steady-state transcript abundance of approximately 6,000 Unigenes differed significantly between the cultivars and the irrigation treatments. Water deficit most affected the phenylpropanoid, ABA, isoprenoid, carotenoid, amino acid and fatty acid metabolic pathways. Targeted metabolites were profiled to confirm putative changes in specific metabolic pathways. Water deficit activated the expression of numerous transcripts associated with glutamate and proline biosynthesis and some committed steps of the phenylpropanoid pathway that increased anthocyanin concentrations in Cabernet Sauvignon. In Chardonnay, water deficit activated parts of the phenylpropanoid, energy, carotenoid and isoprenoid metabolic pathways that contribute to increased concentrations of antheraxanthin, flavonols and aroma volatiles. Water deficit affected the ABA metabolic pathway in both cultivars. Berry ABA concentrations were highly correlated with 9-cis-epoxycarotenoid dioxygenase (NCED1) transcript abundance, whereas the mRNA expression of other NCED genes and ABA catabolic and glycosylation processes were largely unaffected. Water deficit nearly doubled ABA concentrations within berries of Cabernet Sauvignon, whereas it decreased ABA in Chardonnay at véraison and shortly thereafter. Conclusion The metabolic responses of grapes to water deficit varied with the cultivar and fruit pigmentation. Chardonnay berries, which lack any significant anthocyanin content, exhibited increased photoprotection mechanisms under water deficit conditions. Water deficit increased ABA, proline, sugar and anthocyanin concentrations in Cabernet Sauvignon, but not Chardonnay berries, consistent with the hypothesis that ABA enhanced accumulation of these compounds. Water deficit increased the transcript abundance of lipoxygenase and hydroperoxide lyase in fatty metabolism, a pathway known to affect berry and wine aromas. These changes in metabolism have important impacts on berry flavor and quality characteristics. Several of these metabolites are known to contribute to increased human-health benefits. PMID:19426499

  2. Habitat use and movement patterns of Northern Pintails during spring in northern Japan: the importance of agricultural lands

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Yamaguchi, Noriyuki M.; Hupp, Jerry W.; Flint, Paul L.; Pearce, John M.; Shigeta, Yusuke; Shimada, Tetsuo; Hiraoka, Emiko N.; Higuchi, Hiroyoshi

    2012-01-01

    From 2006 to 2009, we marked 198 Northern Pintails (Anas acuta) with satellite transmitters on their wintering areas in Japan to study their migration routes and habitat use in spring staging areas. We hypothesized that the distribution of pintails during spring staging was influenced by patterns of land use and expected that the most frequently used areas would have more agricultural habitat than lesser-used areas. We obtained 3031 daily locations from 163 migrant pintails marked with satellite transmitters and identified 524 stopover sites. Based on a fixed kernel home range analysis of stopover utilization distribution (UD), core staging areas (areas within the 50% UD) were identified in northern Honshu and western Hokkaido, and were used by 71% of marked pintails. Core staging areas had a greater proportion of rice fields than peripheral (51–95% UD) and rarely used (outside the 95% UD) staging areas. Stopover sites also contained more rice fields and other agricultural land than were available at regional scales, indicating that pintails selected rice and other agricultural habitats at regional and local scales. Pintails remained at spring staging areas an average of 51 d. Prolonged staging in agricultural habitats of northern Japan was likely necessary for pintails to prepare for transoceanic migration to Arctic nesting areas in eastern Russia.

  3. An Examination of Important Competencies Necessary for Vocational Agriculture in Selected Senior Secondary Students in Ijebu North Local Government Area, Nigeria

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Onanuga, Peter Abayomi

    2015-01-01

    The study analyses the relationship existing between some specified competencies important to vocational agriculture and preparation for occupation between male and female students in senior secondary schools in Ijebu-North Local Government Area, Nigeria. It adopted the classical design for change experiment (i.e. before and after measures) with…

  4. Do Callous-Unemotional Traits Moderate the Relative Importance of Parental Coercion versus Warmth in Child Conduct Problems? An Observational Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pasalich, Dave S.; Dadds, Mark R.; Hawes, David J.; Brennan, John

    2011-01-01

    Background: Research suggests that parenting has little influence on the development of antisocial behavior in children with callous-unemotional (CU) traits. We aimed to extend and improve on prior studies examining the moderating role of CU traits on associations between parenting and conduct problems, by using independent observations of two key

  5. The importance of rare species: a trait-based assessment of rare species contributions to functional diversity and possible ecosystem function in tall-grass prairies

    PubMed Central

    Jain, Meha; Flynn, Dan FB; Prager, Case M; Hart, Georgia M; DeVan, Caroline M; Ahrestani, Farshid S; Palmer, Matthew I; Bunker, Daniel E; Knops, Johannes MH; Jouseau, Claire F; Naeem, Shahid

    2014-01-01

    The majority of species in ecosystems are rare, but the ecosystem consequences of losing rare species are poorly known. To understand how rare species may influence ecosystem functioning, this study quantifies the contribution of species based on their relative level of rarity to community functional diversity using a trait-based approach. Given that rarity can be defined in several different ways, we use four different definitions of rarity: abundance (mean and maximum), geographic range, and habitat specificity. We find that rarer species contribute to functional diversity when rarity is defined by maximum abundance, geographic range, and habitat specificity. However, rarer species are functionally redundant when rarity is defined by mean abundance. Furthermore, when using abundance-weighted analyses, we find that rare species typically contribute significantly less to functional diversity than common species due to their low abundances. These results suggest that rare species have the potential to play an important role in ecosystem functioning, either by offering novel contributions to functional diversity or via functional redundancy depending on how rare species are defined. Yet, these contributions are likely to be greatest if the abundance of rare species increases due to environmental change. We argue that given the paucity of data on rare species, understanding the contribution of rare species to community functional diversity is an important first step to understanding the potential role of rare species in ecosystem functioning. PMID:24455165

  6. Identification of QTLs for eight agronomically important traits using an ultra-high-density map based on SNPs generated from high-throughput sequencing in sorghum under contrasting photoperiods.

    PubMed

    Zou, Guihua; Zhai, Guowei; Feng, Qi; Yan, Song; Wang, Ahong; Zhao, Qiang; Shao, Jianfeng; Zhang, Zhipeng; Zou, Jianqiu; Han, Bin; Tao, Yuezhi

    2012-09-01

    The productivity of sorghum is mainly determined by agronomically important traits. The genetic bases of these traits have historically been dissected and analysed through quantitative trait locus (QTL) mapping based on linkage maps with low-throughput molecular markers, which is one of the factors that hinder precise and complete information about the numbers and locations of the genes or QTLs controlling the traits. In this study, an ultra-high-density linkage map based on high-quality single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) generated from low-coverage sequences (~0.07 genome sequence) in a sorghum recombinant inbred line (RIL) population was constructed through new sequencing technology. This map consisted of 3418 bin markers and spanned 1591.4 cM of genome size with an average distance of 0.5 cM between adjacent bins. QTL analysis was performed and a total of 57 major QTLs were detected for eight agronomically important traits under two contrasting photoperiods. The phenotypic variation explained by individual QTLs varied from 3.40% to 33.82%. The high accuracy and quality of this map was evidenced by the finding that genes underlying two cloned QTLs, Dw3 for plant height (chromosome 7) and Ma1 for flowering time (chromosome 6), were localized to the correct genomic regions. The close associations between two genomic regions on chromosomes 6 and 7 with multiple traits suggested the existence of pleiotropy or tight linkage. Several major QTLs for heading date, plant height, numbers of nodes, stem diameter, panicle neck length, and flag leaf width were detected consistently under both photoperiods, providing useful information for understanding the genetic mechanisms of the agronomically important traits responsible for the change of photoperiod. PMID:22859680

  7. Agroterrorism, biological crimes, and biowarfare targeting animal agriculture. The clinical, pathologic, diagnostic, and epidemiologic features of some important animal diseases.

    PubMed

    Wilson, T M; Gregg, D A; King, D J; Noah, D L; Perkins, L E; Swayne, D E; Inskeep, W

    2001-09-01

    In the past 100 years, to our knowledge there have been approximately 12 events involving the intentional introduction of microbiologic agents into livestock and animal populations worldwide, of which three were World War I events in the United States. To the best of the authors' knowledge, there has been no recent intentional introduction of microbiologic agents (viruses or bacteria) into livestock and animal populations in the United States. The criminal or terrorist use of chemicals against animals and agriculture products have been more common. With the political, economic, and military new world order, however, the United States must maintain a vigilant posture. The framework for this vigilance must be an intelligence system sensitive to the needs of agriculture and a first-class animal disease diagnostic surveillance and response system. PMID:11572141

  8. The Importance of the Regional Species Pool, Ecological Species Traits and Local Habitat Conditions for the Colonization of Restored River Reaches by Fish

    PubMed Central

    Stoll, Stefan; Kail, Jochem; Lorenz, Armin W.; Sundermann, Andrea; Haase, Peter

    2014-01-01

    It is commonly assumed that the colonization of restored river reaches by fish depends on the regional species pools; however, quantifications of the relationship between the composition of the regional species pool and restoration outcome are lacking. We analyzed data from 18 German river restoration projects and adjacent river reaches constituting the regional species pools of the restored reaches. We found that the ability of statistical models to describe the fish assemblages established in the restored reaches was greater when these models were based on ‘biotic’ variables relating to the regional species pool and the ecological traits of species rather than on ‘abiotic’ variables relating to the hydromorphological habitat structure of the restored habitats and descriptors of the restoration projects. For species presence in restored reaches, ‘biotic’ variables explained 34% of variability, with the occurrence rate of a species in the regional species pool being the most important variable, while ’abiotic’ variables explained only the negligible amount of 2% of variability. For fish density in restored reaches, about twice the amount of variability was explained by ‘biotic’ (38%) compared to ‘abiotic’ (21%) variables, with species density in the regional species pool being most important. These results indicate that the colonization of restored river reaches by fish is largely determined by the assemblages in the surrounding species pool. Knowledge of species presence and abundance in the regional species pool can be used to estimate the likelihood of fish species becoming established in restored reaches. PMID:24404187

  9. Soil and geography are more important determinants of indigenous arbuscular mycorrhizal communities than management practices in Swiss agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Jansa, Jan; Erb, Angela; Oberholzer, Hans-Rudolf; Smilauer, Petr; Egli, Simon

    2014-04-01

    Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) are ubiquitous soil fungi, forming mutualistic symbiosis with a majority of terrestrial plant species. They are abundant in nearly all soils, less diverse than soil prokaryotes and other intensively studied soil organisms and thus are promising candidates for universal indicators of land management legacies and soil quality degradation. However, insufficient data on how the composition of indigenous AMF varies along soil and landscape gradients have hampered the definition of baselines and effect thresholds to date. Here, indigenous AMF communities in 154 agricultural soils collected across Switzerland were profiled by quantitative real-time PCR with taxon-specific markers for six widespread AMF species. To identify the key determinants of AMF community composition, the profiles were related to soil properties, land management and site geography. Our results indicate a number of well-supported dependencies between abundances of certain AMF taxa and soil properties such as pH, soil fertility and texture, and a surprising lack of effect of available soil phosphorus on the AMF community profiles. Site geography, especially the altitude and large geographical distance, strongly affected AMF communities. Unexpected was the apparent lack of a strong land management effect on the AMF communities as compared to the other predictors, which could be due to the rarity of highly intensive and unsustainable land management in Swiss agriculture. In spite of the extensive coverage of large geographical and soil gradients, we did not identify any taxon suitable as an indicator of land use among the six taxa we studied. PMID:24611988

  10. The importance of the riparian zone and in-stream processes in nitrate attenuation in undisturbed and agricultural watersheds a review of the scientific literature

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ranalli, Anthony J.; MacAlady, Donald L.

    2010-01-01

    We reviewed published studies from primarily glaciated regions in the United States, Canada, and Europe of the (1) transport of nitrate from terrestrial ecosystems to aquatic ecosystems, (2) attenuation of nitrate in the riparian zone of undisturbed and agricultural watersheds, (3) processes contributing to nitrate attenuation in riparian zones, (4) variation in the attenuation of nitrate in the riparian zone, and (5) importance of in-stream and hyporheic processes for nitrate attenuation in the stream channel. Our objectives were to synthesize the results of these studies and suggest methodologies to (1) monitor regional trends in nitrate concentration in undisturbed 1st order watersheds and (2) reduce nitrate loads in streams draining agricultural watersheds. Our review reveals that undisturbed headwater watersheds have been shown to be very retentive of nitrogen, but the importance of biogeochemical and hydrological riparian zone processes in retaining nitrogen in these watersheds has not been demonstrated as it has for agricultural watersheds. An understanding of the role of the riparian zone in nitrate attenuation in undisturbed watersheds is crucial because these watersheds are increasingly subject to stressors, such as changes in land use and climate, wildfire, and increases in atmospheric nitrogen deposition. In general, understanding processes controlling the concentration and flux of nitrate is critical to identifying and mapping the vulnerability of watersheds to water quality changes due to a variety of stressors. In undisturbed and agricultural watersheds we propose that understanding the importance of riparian zone processes in 2nd order and larger watersheds is critical. Research is needed that addresses the relative importance of how the following sources of nitrate along any given stream reach might change as watersheds increase in size and with flow: (1) inputs upstream from the reach, (2) tributary inflow, (3) water derived from the riparian zone, (4) groundwater from outside the riparian zone (intermediate or regional sources), and (5) in-stream (hyporheic) processes.

  11. The importance of the riparian zone and in-stream processes in nitrate attenuation in undisturbed and agricultural watersheds - A review of the scientific literature

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ranalli, Anthony J.; Macalady, Donald L.

    2010-08-01

    SummaryWe reviewed published studies from primarily glaciated regions in the United States, Canada, and Europe of the (1) transport of nitrate from terrestrial ecosystems to aquatic ecosystems, (2) attenuation of nitrate in the riparian zone of undisturbed and agricultural watersheds, (3) processes contributing to nitrate attenuation in riparian zones, (4) variation in the attenuation of nitrate in the riparian zone, and (5) importance of in-stream and hyporheic processes for nitrate attenuation in the stream channel. Our objectives were to synthesize the results of these studies and suggest methodologies to (1) monitor regional trends in nitrate concentration in undisturbed 1st order watersheds and (2) reduce nitrate loads in streams draining agricultural watersheds. Our review reveals that undisturbed headwater watersheds have been shown to be very retentive of nitrogen, but the importance of biogeochemical and hydrological riparian zone processes in retaining nitrogen in these watersheds has not been demonstrated as it has for agricultural watersheds. An understanding of the role of the riparian zone in nitrate attenuation in undisturbed watersheds is crucial because these watersheds are increasingly subject to stressors, such as changes in land use and climate, wildfire, and increases in atmospheric nitrogen deposition. In general, understanding processes controlling the concentration and flux of nitrate is critical to identifying and mapping the vulnerability of watersheds to water quality changes due to a variety of stressors. In undisturbed and agricultural watersheds we propose that understanding the importance of riparian zone processes in 2nd order and larger watersheds is critical. Research is needed that addresses the relative importance of how the following sources of nitrate along any given stream reach might change as watersheds increase in size and with flow: (1) inputs upstream from the reach, (2) tributary inflow, (3) water derived from the riparian zone, (4) groundwater from outside the riparian zone (intermediate or regional sources), and (5) in-stream (hyporheic) processes.

  12. The importance of context to the genetic architecture of diabetes-related traits is revealed in a genome-wide scan of a LG/J x SM/J murine model

    PubMed Central

    Lawson, Heather A.; Lee, Arthur; Fawcett, Gloria L.; Wang, Bing; Pletscher, L. Susan; Maxwell, Taylor J.; Ehrich, Thomas H.; Kenney-Hunt, Jane P.; Wolf, Jason B.; Semenkovich, Clay F.; Cheverud, James M.

    2013-01-01

    Variations in diabetic phenotypes are caused by complex interactions of genetic effects, environmental factors, and the interplay between the two. We tease apart these complex interactions by examining genome-wide genetic and epigenetic effects on diabetes-related traits among different sex, diet, and sex-by-diet cohorts in a Mus musculus model. We conducted a genome-wide scan for quantitative trait loci affecting serum glucose and insulin levels and response to glucose stress in an F16 Advanced Intercross Line of the LG/J and SM/J intercross (Wustl:LG, SM-G16). Half of each sibship was fed a high-fat diet and half was fed a relatively low-fat diet. Context-dependent genetic (additive and dominance) and epigenetic (parent-of-origin imprinting) effects were characterized by partitioning animals into sex, diet, and sex-by-diet cohorts. We find that different cohorts often have unique genetic effects at the same loci, and that genetic signals can be masked or erroneously assigned to specific cohorts if they are not considered individually. Our data demonstrate that the effects of genes on complex trait variation are highly context dependent, and that the same genomic sequence can affect traits differently depending on an individuals sex and/or dietary environment. Our results have important implications for studies of complex traits in humans. PMID:21210123

  13. Farmers' perception on the importance of variegated grasshopper (Zonocerus variegatus (L.)) in the agricultural production systems of the humid forest zone of Southern Cameroon

    PubMed Central

    Kekeunou, Svilor; Weise, Stephan; Messi, Jean; Tam, Manuel

    2006-01-01

    Background Zonocerus variegatus (Linnaeus, 1758) (Orthoptera: Pyrgomorphidae) is known as an agricultural pest in West and Central Africa. However, its importance in the agricultural production system in Cameroon has not been investigated. The study assesses farmers' perception on the importance of Z. variegatus in the agricultural production systems of the humid forest zone of Southern Cameroon. Methods Research was carried out in 5 villages of each of three Agro-Ecological, Cultural and Demographic Blocks (AECD-Blocks) of the Forest Margin Benchmark Area (FMBA). In each village, a semi-structured survey was used; male and female groups of farmers were interviewed separately. Results Z. variegatus is present throughout the humid forest zone of Southern Cameroon, where it is ranked as the third most economically important insect pest of agriculture. In the farmers' opinion, Z. variegatus is a polyphagous insect with little impact on young perennial crops. The length of the pre-farming fallow does not affect Z. variegatus pest pressure in the following crops. The increased impact of the grasshopper observed today in the fields, compared to what existed 10 years ago is as a result of deforestation and increase in surface of herbaceous fallow. The damage caused by Z. variegatus is higher in fields adjacent to C. odorata and herbaceous fallows than in those adjacent to forests and shrubby fallows. The fight against this grasshopper is often done through physical methods carried out by hand, for human consumption. The farmers highlight low usage of the chemical methods and a total absence of biological and ecological methods. Conclusion Farmers' perception have contributed to understanding the status of Z. variegatus in the humid forest zone of Southern Cameroon. The results are in general similar to those obtained in other countries. PMID:16573815

  14. Uptake of microcystins-LR and -LF (cyanobacterial toxins) in seedlings of several important agricultural plant species and the correlation with cellular damage (lipid peroxidation).

    PubMed

    Peuthert, Anja; Chakrabarti, Shumon; Pflugmacher, Stephan

    2007-08-01

    Plants used for agriculture may come into contact with cyanobacterial toxins via spray irrigation when surface water bodies containing cyanobacteria are used as the water source. As many of the bloom forming cyanobacteria are known to produce a variety of toxins, the possibility of uptake of toxins in these plants seems possible. With this study the uptake of two microcystins (MC-LR and MC-LF) as well as MC-LR within a cyanobacterial crude extract in several important agricultural plants is presented. Especially high uptake values in roots of alfalfa and wheat, using an ELISA kit for microcystin detection, is shown. In general, concentrations in the shoot occur at a much lower level than in the root. The amount of toxin is correlated with cellular damage in the seedlings using lipid peroxidation as an indicator. Good correlation was shown between toxin uptake and lipid peroxidation in the seedlings. The exposure of agriculturally important crop plants to cyanobacterial toxins via spray irrigation or watering is a potential concern for human health, as these toxins may accumulate in plant tissues and may therefore be carried through the food chain. PMID:17607734

  15. The Importance of Change: Contextualizing Natural and Anthropogenic Hydrologic Variability in terms of agricultural and sectorial economies in India

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ponce de Leon Barido, D.; Nelson, H.; Thatikonda, S.; Smith, R.; Roe, T.; Foufoula, E.

    2012-12-01

    Freshwater availability and human prosperity are intricately connected. In many parts of the world however, water demands exceed the renewable water supply and groundwater resources are depleted at an alarming rate. Such is the case in India, especially in its agriculturally intensive regions of Punjab and Telagana where most of the country's rice and wheat is produced. Punjab (Northwest India; deep alluvial aquifers), and Telangana (Central India; shallow bedrock aquifers), with vastly different natural resource endowments (water and hydrogeology) and economic structures, present an exemplary case study for depicting the linkages that exist between hydrological variability, climate change adaptation, and regional sectorial economies. We focus our study on precipitation variability and key parameters that can explain how the Indian monsoon has been evolving over time: total and monthly monsoon rainfall, the frequency and length of dry spells, the spatial distribution of rainfall, and the frequency and intensity of extreme events. Using a social accounting matrix (SAM) to describe the sector composition and structure of the Punjab, Telengana and the rest of India, we evaluate the economic implications of variability, adaptation, and policy changes, via a general equilibrium framework. Hydrologic variability and change is given context as "water shocks" are translated to economic consequences allowing to study scenarios and trade-offs.

  16. Modeling QTL for complex traits: detection and context for plant breeding.

    PubMed

    Cooper, Mark; van Eeuwijk, Fred A; Hammer, Graeme L; Podlich, Dean W; Messina, Carlos

    2009-04-01

    The genetic architecture of a trait is defined by the set of genes contributing to genetic variation within a reference population of genotypes together with information on their location in the genome and the effects of their alleles on traits, including intra-locus and inter-locus interactions, environmental dependencies, and pleiotropy. Accumulated evidence from trait mapping studies emphasizes that plant breeders work within a trait genetic complexity continuum. Some traits show a relatively simple genetic architecture while others, such as grain yield, have a complex architecture. An important advance is that we now have empirical genetic models of trait genetic architecture obtained from mapping studies (multi-QTL models including various genetic effects that may vary in relation to environmental factors) to ground theoretical investigations on the merits of alternative breeding strategies. Such theoretical studies indicate that as the genetic complexity of traits increases the opportunities for realizing benefits from molecular enhanced breeding strategies increase. To realize these potential benefits and enable the plant breeder to increase rate of genetic gain for complex traits it is anticipated that the empirical genetic models of trait genetic architecture used for predicting trait variation will need to incorporate the effects of genetic interactions and be interpreted within a genotype-environment-management framework for the target agricultural production system. PMID:19282235

  17. Construction of a genetic linkage map and identification of molecular markers associated with resistance to TSWV, leaf spot, and other important traits.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The limited DNA polymorphisms have impeded the application of marker assisted breeding in peanut. A high-density genetic linkage map for all chromosomes is necessary for quantitative trait loci (QTLs) analysis and efficient marker-assisted breeding. Peanut is vulnerable to a range of diseases, such ...

  18. In silico analysis of the 16S rRNA gene of endophytic bacteria, isolated from the aerial parts and seeds of important agricultural crops.

    PubMed

    Bredow, C; Azevedo, J L; Pamphile, J A; Mangolin, C A; Rhoden, S A

    2015-01-01

    Because of human population growth, increased food production and alternatives to conventional methods of biocontrol and development of plants such as the use of endophytic bacteria and fungi are required. One of the methods used to study microorganism diversity is sequencing of the 16S rRNA gene, which has several advantages, including universality, size, and availability of databases for comparison. The objective of this study was to analyze endophytic bacterial diversity in agricultural crops using published papers, sequence databases, and phylogenetic analysis. Fourteen papers were selected in which the ribosomal 16S rRNA gene was used to identify endophytic bacteria, in important agricultural crops, such as coffee, sugar cane, beans, corn, soybean, tomatoes, and grapes, located in different geographical regions (America, Europe, and Asia). The corresponding 16S rRNA gene sequences were selected from the NCBI database, aligned using the Mega 5.2 program, and phylogenetic analysis was undertaken. The most common orders present in the analyzed cultures were Bacillales, Enterobacteriales, and Actinomycetales and the most frequently observed genera were Bacillus, Pseudomonas, and Microbacterium. Phylogenetic analysis showed that only approximately 1.56% of the total sequences were not properly grouped, demonstrating reliability in the identification of microorganisms. This study identified the main genera found in endophytic bacterial cultures from plants, providing data for future studies on improving plant agriculture, biotechnology, endophytic bacterium prospecting, and to help understand relationships between endophytic bacteria and their interactions with plants. PMID:26345903

  19. Nutrient composition and nutritional importance of green leaves and wild food resources in an agricultural district, Koutiala, in southern Mali.

    PubMed

    Nordeide, M B; Hatly, A; Flling, M; Lied, E; Oshaug, A

    1996-11-01

    This paper discusses the nutrient composition and the nutritional importance of green leaves and wild gathered foods in an area with surplus food production in Mali. In this West African country, there is little information about the nutrient composition and the nutritional quality of foods in general, and of wild gathered foods in particular. Food frequency was collected in two cross-sectional surveys. Focus group discussions with women in the area were used to collect information about seasonality, availability and preparation of various foods. Selected food samples were collected for chemical analysis of nutrient composition. The food samples of green leaves (Adansonia digitata, Amaranthus viridis, Tamarindus indica, Allium cepa), seeds and flour (Parkia biglobosa) and fruits (Tamarindus indica) were analysed for water, energy, fat, protein, minerals, amino acids and carotenoids. Availability and use of the foods varied with seasons. In the rainy season, wild gathered foods (e.g. A. digitata) were used as much as fresh cultivated foods (e.g., A. viridis and A. cepa). The wild food resources were more frequently used in rural than in urban areas, with A. digitata as the dominating green leaves. Green leaves were rich in energy, protein and minerals (calcium, iron). Leaves of A. viridis were, in particular, rich in beta-carotene (3290 micrograms/100 g). Chemical score in dried green leaves varied from 47 (A. cepa) to 81 (A. digitata), with lysine as the first limiting amino acid. P. biglobosa fermented seeds, with 35% fat and 37% protein were a complementary source of lysine in the diet. Based on the seasonality, the frequency of use and the nutrient contents of selected green leaves and wild gathered foods in Koutiala district, it is concluded that these traditional and locally produced foods are valuable and important nutrient contributors in the diet both in rural and urban areas, but most important in rural areas. PMID:8933199

  20. Molecular characterization of a mutation affecting abscisic acid biosynthesis and consequently stomatal responses to humidity in an agriculturally important species

    PubMed Central

    McAdam, Scott A. M.; Sussmilch, Frances C.; Brodribb, Timothy J.; Ross, John J.

    2015-01-01

    Mutants deficient in the phytohormone abscisic acid (ABA) have been instrumental in determining not only the biosynthetic pathway for this hormone, but also its physiological role in land plants. The wilty mutant of Pisum sativum is one of the classical, well-studied ABA-deficient mutants; however, this mutant remains uncharacterized at a molecular level. Using a candidate gene approach, we show that the wilty mutation affects the xanthoxin dehydrogenase step in ABA biosynthesis. To date, this step has only been represented by mutants in the ABA2 gene of Arabidopsis thaliana. Functional ABA biosynthesis appears to be critical for normal stomatal responses to changes in humidity in angiosperms, with wilty mutant plants having no increase in foliar ABA levels in response to a doubling in vapour pressure deficit, and no closure of stomata. Phylogenetic analysis of the ABA2 gene family from diverse land plants indicates that an ABA-biosynthesis-specific short-chain dehydrogenase (ABA2) evolved in the earliest angiosperms. The relatively recent origin of specificity in this step has important implications for both the evolution of ABA biosynthesis and action in land plants. PMID:26216469

  1. Evidence for the importance of litter as a co-substrate for MCPA dissipation in an agricultural soil.

    PubMed

    Saleh, Omar; Pagel, Holger; Enowashu, Esther; Devers, Marion; Martin-Laurent, Fabrice; Streck, Thilo; Kandeler, Ellen; Poll, Christian

    2016-03-01

    Environmental controls of 2-methyl-4-chlorophenoxyacetic acid (MCPA) degradation are poorly understood. We investigated whether microbial MCPA degraders are stimulated by (maize) litter and whether this process depends on concentrations of MCPA and litter. In a microcosm experiment, different amounts of litter (0, 10 and 20g kg(-1)) were added to soils exposed to three levels of the herbicide (0, 5 and 30mg kg(-1)). The treated soils were incubated at 20C for 6weeks, and samples were taken after 1, 3 and 6weeks of incubation. In soils with 5mg kg(-1) MCPA, about 50% of the MCPA was dissipated within 1week of the incubation. Almost complete dissipation of the herbicide had occurred by the end of the incubation with no differences between the three litter amendments. At the higher concentration (30mg kg(-1)), MCPA endured longer in the soil, with only 31% of the initial amount being removed at the end of the experiment in the absence of litter. Litter addition greatly increased the dissipation rate with 70 and 80% of the herbicide being dissipated in the 10 and 20g kg(-1) litter treatments, respectively. Signs of toxic effects of MCPA on soil bacteria were observed from related phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) analyses, while fungi showed higher tolerance to the increased MCPA levels. The abundance of bacterial tfdA genes in soil increased with the co-occurrence of litter and high MCPA concentration, indicating the importance of substrate availability in fostering MCPA-degrading bacteria and thereby improving the potential for removal of MCPA in the environment. PMID:25943518

  2. Searching for adaptive traits in genetic resources - phenology based approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bari, Abdallah

    2015-04-01

    Searching for adaptive traits in genetic resources - phenology based approach Abdallah Bari, Kenneth Street, Eddy De Pauw, Jalal Eddin Omari, and Chandra M. Biradar International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas, Rabat Institutes, Rabat, Morocco Phenology is an important plant trait not only for assessing and forecasting food production but also for searching in genebanks for adaptive traits. Among the phenological parameters we have been considering to search for such adaptive and rare traits are the onset (sowing period) and the seasonality (growing period). Currently an application is being developed as part of the focused identification of germplasm strategy (FIGS) approach to use climatic data in order to identify crop growing seasons and characterize them in terms of onset and duration. These approximations of growing period characteristics can then be used to estimate flowering and maturity dates for dryland crops, such as wheat, barley, faba bean, lentils and chickpea, and assess, among others, phenology-related traits such as days to heading [dhe] and grain filling period [gfp]. The approach followed here is based on first calculating long term average daily temperatures by fitting a curve to the monthly data over days from beginning of the year. Prior to the identification of these phenological stages the onset is extracted first from onset integer raster GIS layers developed based on a model of the growing period that considers both moisture and temperature limitations. The paper presents some examples of real applications of the approach to search for rare and adaptive traits.

  3. Seeds' physicochemical traits and mucilage protection against aluminum effect during germination and root elongation as important factors in a biofuel seed crop (Ricinus communis).

    PubMed

    Silva, Giovanni Eustquio Alves; Ramos, Flvia Toledo; de Faria, Ana Paula; Frana, Marcel Giovanni Costa

    2014-10-01

    We determined the length, volume, dry biomass, and density in seeds of five castor bean cultivars and verified notable physicochemical trait differences. Seeds were then subjected to different toxic aluminum (Al) concentrations to evaluate germination, relative root elongation, and the role of root apices' rhizosphere mucilage layer. Seeds' physicochemical traits were associated with Al toxicity responses, and the absence of Al in cotyledons near to the embryo was revealed by Al-hematoxylin staining, indicating that Al did not induce significant germination reduction rates between cultivars. However, in the more sensitive cultivar, Al was found around the embryo, contributing to subsequent growth inhibition. After this, to investigate the role of mucilage in Al tolerance, an assay was conducted using NH4Cl to remove root mucilage before or after exposure to different Al concentrations. Sequentially, the roots were stained with hematoxylin and a quantitative analysis of staining intensity was obtained. These results revealed the significant contribution of the mucilage layer to Al toxicity responses in castor bean seedlings. Root growth elongation under Al toxicity confirmed the role of the mucilage layer, which jointly indicated the differential Al tolerance between cultivars and an efficient Al-exclusion mechanism in the tolerant cultivar. PMID:25028322

  4. Ultra-high density intra-specific genetic linkage maps accelerate identification of functionally relevant molecular tags governing important agronomic traits in chickpea.

    PubMed

    Kujur, Alice; Upadhyaya, Hari D; Shree, Tanima; Bajaj, Deepak; Das, Shouvik; Saxena, Maneesha S; Badoni, Saurabh; Kumar, Vinod; Tripathi, Shailesh; Gowda, C L L; Sharma, Shivali; Singh, Sube; Tyagi, Akhilesh K; Parida, Swarup K

    2015-01-01

    We discovered 26785 and 16573 high-quality SNPs differentiating two parental genotypes of a RIL mapping population using reference desi and kabuli genome-based GBS assay. Of these, 3625 and 2177 SNPs have been integrated into eight desi and kabuli chromosomes, respectively in order to construct ultra-high density (0.20-0.37 cM) intra-specific chickpea genetic linkage maps. One of these constructed high-resolution genetic map has potential to identify 33 major genomic regions harbouring 35 robust QTLs (PVE: 17.9-39.7%) associated with three agronomic traits, which were mapped within <1 cM mean marker intervals on desi chromosomes. The extended LD (linkage disequilibrium) decay (~15 cM) in chromosomes of genetic maps have encouraged us to use a rapid integrated approach (comparative QTL mapping, QTL-region specific haplotype/LD-based trait association analysis, expression profiling and gene haplotype-based association mapping) rather than a traditional QTL map-based cloning method to narrow-down one major seed weight (SW) robust QTL region. It delineated favourable natural allelic variants and superior haplotype-containing one seed-specific candidate embryo defective gene regulating SW in chickpea. The ultra-high-resolution genetic maps, QTLs/genes and alleles/haplotypes-related genomic information generated and integrated strategy for rapid QTL/gene identification developed have potential to expedite genomics-assisted breeding applications in crop plants, including chickpea for their genetic enhancement. PMID:25942004

  5. The influence of genetic drift and selection on quantitative traits in a plant pathogenic fungus.

    PubMed

    Stefansson, Tryggvi S; McDonald, Bruce A; Willi, Yvonne

    2014-01-01

    Genetic drift and selection are ubiquitous evolutionary forces acting to shape genetic variation in populations. While their relative importance has been well studied in plants and animals, less is known about their relative importance in fungal pathogens. Because agro-ecosystems are more homogeneous environments than natural ecosystems, stabilizing selection may play a stronger role than genetic drift or diversifying selection in shaping genetic variation among populations of fungal pathogens in agro-ecosystems. We tested this hypothesis by conducting a QST/FST analysis using agricultural populations of the barley pathogen Rhynchosporium commune. Population divergence for eight quantitative traits (QST) was compared with divergence at eight neutral microsatellite loci (FST) for 126 pathogen strains originating from nine globally distributed field populations to infer the effects of genetic drift and types of selection acting on each trait. Our analyses indicated that five of the eight traits had QST values significantly lower than FST, consistent with stabilizing selection, whereas one trait, growth under heat stress (22C), showed evidence of diversifying selection and local adaptation (QST>FST). Estimates of heritability were high for all traits (means ranging between 0.55-0.84), and average heritability across traits was negatively correlated with microsatellite gene diversity. Some trait pairs were genetically correlated and there was significant evidence for a trade-off between spore size and spore number, and between melanization and growth under benign temperature. Our findings indicate that many ecologically and agriculturally important traits are under stabilizing selection in R. commune and that high within-population genetic variation is maintained for these traits. PMID:25383967

  6. The Influence of Genetic Drift and Selection on Quantitative Traits in a Plant Pathogenic Fungus

    PubMed Central

    Stefansson, Tryggvi S.; McDonald, Bruce A.; Willi, Yvonne

    2014-01-01

    Genetic drift and selection are ubiquitous evolutionary forces acting to shape genetic variation in populations. While their relative importance has been well studied in plants and animals, less is known about their relative importance in fungal pathogens. Because agro-ecosystems are more homogeneous environments than natural ecosystems, stabilizing selection may play a stronger role than genetic drift or diversifying selection in shaping genetic variation among populations of fungal pathogens in agro-ecosystems. We tested this hypothesis by conducting a QST/FST analysis using agricultural populations of the barley pathogen Rhynchosporium commune. Population divergence for eight quantitative traits (QST) was compared with divergence at eight neutral microsatellite loci (FST) for 126 pathogen strains originating from nine globally distributed field populations to infer the effects of genetic drift and types of selection acting on each trait. Our analyses indicated that five of the eight traits had QST values significantly lower than FST, consistent with stabilizing selection, whereas one trait, growth under heat stress (22C), showed evidence of diversifying selection and local adaptation (QST>FST). Estimates of heritability were high for all traits (means ranging between 0.550.84), and average heritability across traits was negatively correlated with microsatellite gene diversity. Some trait pairs were genetically correlated and there was significant evidence for a trade-off between spore size and spore number, and between melanization and growth under benign temperature. Our findings indicate that many ecologically and agriculturally important traits are under stabilizing selection in R. commune and that high within-population genetic variation is maintained for these traits. PMID:25383967

  7. DETECTION OF QUANTITATIVE TRAIT LOCI AFFECTING MILK PRODUCTION, HEALTH, AND REPRODUCTIVE TRAITS IN HOLSTEIN CATTLE

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    We report putative quantitative trait loci affecting female fertility and milk production traits using the merged data from groups that conducted independent genome scans in Dairy Bull DNA Repository grandsire families to identify quantitative trait loci affecting economically important traits. Six ...

  8. Heritability of drought resistance traits and correlation of drought resistance and agronomic traits in peanut

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Inheritance of traits is important for developing effective breeding schemes for improving desired traits. The aims of this study were to estimate the heritabilities (h2) of drought resistance traits and the genotypic (rG) and phenotypic (rP) correlations between drought resistance traits under str...

  9. The relationship between pond habitat depth and functional tadpole diversity in an agricultural landscape

    PubMed Central

    de Souza Queiroz, Cssia; da Silva, Fernando Rodrigues; de Cerqueira Rossa-Feres, Denise

    2015-01-01

    One of the most important goals of biodiversity studies is to identify which characteristics of local habitats act as filters that determine the diversity of functional traits along environmental gradients. In this study, we investigated the relationship between the environmental variables of ponds and the functional trait diversity distribution of anuran tadpoles in an agricultural area in southeastern Brazil. Our results show that the functional trait diversity of frog tadpoles has a bell-curve-shaped relationship with the depths of ponds inserted in a pasture matrix. Because we are witnessing increasing human pressure on land use, simple acts (e.g. maintaining reproductive habitats with medium depth) can be the first steps towards preserving the diversity of Neotropical frog tadpole traits in agricultural landscapes. PMID:26587274

  10. IncP-1? Plasmids are Important Vectors of Antibiotic Resistance Genes in Agricultural Systems: Diversification Driven by Class 1 Integron Gene Cassettes.

    PubMed

    Heuer, Holger; Binh, Chu T T; Jechalke, Sven; Kopmann, Christoph; Zimmerling, Ute; Krgerrecklenfort, Ellen; Ledger, Thomas; Gonzlez, Bernardo; Top, Eva; Smalla, Kornelia

    2012-01-01

    The role of broad-host range IncP-1? plasmids in the dissemination of antibiotic resistance in agricultural systems has not yet been investigated. These plasmids were detected in total DNA from all of 16 manure samples and in arable soil based on a novel 5'-nuclease assay for real-time PCR. A correlation between IncP-1? plasmid abundance and antibiotic usage was revealed. In a soil microcosm experiment the abundance of IncP-1? plasmids was significantly increased even 127?days after application of manure containing the antibiotic compound sulfadiazine, compared to soil receiving only manure, only sulfadiazine, or water. Fifty IncP-1? plasmids that were captured in E. coli CV601gfp from bacterial communities of manure and arable soil were characterized by PCR and hybridization. All plasmids carried class 1 integrons with highly varying sizes of the gene cassette region and the sul1 gene. Three IncP-1? plasmids captured from soil bacteria and one from manure were completely sequenced. The backbones were nearly identical to that of the previously described IncP-1? plasmid pKJK5. The plasmids differed mainly in the composition of a Tn402-like transposon carrying a class 1 integron with varying gene cassettes, IS1326, and in three of the plasmids the tetracycline resistance transposon Tn1721 with various truncations. Diverse Beta- and Gammaproteobacteria were revealed as hosts of one of the IncP-1? plasmids in soil microcosms. Our data suggest that IncP-1? plasmids are important vectors for horizontal transfer of antibiotic resistance in agricultural systems. PMID:22279444

  11. Spatial decoupling of agricultural production and consumption: quantifying dependences of countries on food imports due to domestic land and water constraints

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fader, Marianela; Gerten, Dieter; Krause, Michael; Lucht, Wolfgang; Cramer, Wolfgang

    2013-03-01

    In our globalizing world, the geographical locations of food production and consumption are becoming increasingly disconnected, which increases reliance on external resources and their trade. We quantified to what extent water and land constraints limit countries’ capacities, at present and by 2050, to produce on their own territory the crop products that they currently import from other countries. Scenarios of increased crop productivity and water use, cropland expansion (excluding areas prioritized for other uses) and population change are accounted for. We found that currently 16% of the world population use the opportunities of international trade to cover their demand for agricultural products. Population change may strongly increase the number of people depending on ex situ land and water resources up to about 5.2 billion (51% of world population) in the SRES A2r scenario. International trade will thus have to intensify if population growth is not accompanied by dietary change towards less resource-intensive products, by cropland expansion, or by productivity improvements, mainly in Africa and the Middle East. Up to 1.3 billion people may be at risk of food insecurity in 2050 in present low-income economies (mainly in Africa), if their economic development does not allow them to afford productivity increases, cropland expansion and/or imports from other countries.

  12. Detection of quantitative trait loci affecting haematological traits in swine via genome scanning

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Haematological traits, which consist of mainly three components: leukocyte traits, erythrocyte traits and platelet traits, play extremely important role in animal immune function and disease resistance. But knowledge of the genetic background controlling variability of these traits is very limited, especially in swine. Results In the present study, 18 haematological traits (7 leukocyte traits, 7 erythrocyte traits and 4 platelet traits) were measured in a pig resource population consisting of 368 purebred piglets of three breeds (Landrace, Large White and Songliao Black Pig), after inoculation with the swine fever vaccine when the pigs were 21 days old. A whole-genome scan of QTL for these traits was performed using 206 microsatellite markers covering all 18 autosomes and the X chromosome. Using variance component analysis based on a linear mixed model and the false discovery rate (FDR) test, 35 QTL with FDR < 0.10 were identified: 3 for the leukocyte traits, 28 for the erythrocyte traits, and 4 for the platelet traits. Of the 35 QTL, 25 were significant at FDR < 0.05 level, including 9 significant at FDR < 0.01 level. Conclusions Very few QTL were previously identified for hematological traits of pigs and never in purebred populations. Most of the QTL detected here, in particular the QTL for the platelet traits, have not been reported before. Our results lay important foundation for identifying the causal genes underlying the hematological trait variations in pigs. PMID:20584270

  13. Interval Mapping of Quantitative Trait Loci Employing Correlated Trait Complexes

    PubMed Central

    Korol, A. B.; Ronin, Y. I.; Kirzhner, V. M.

    1995-01-01

    An approach to increase the resolution power of interval mapping of quantitative trait (QT) loci is proposed, based on analysis of correlated trait complexes. For a given set of QTs, the broad sense heritability attributed to a QT locus (QTL) (say, A/ a) is an increasing function of the number of traits. Thus, for some traits x and y, H(xy)(2) (A/ a) >/= H(x)(2) (A/ a). The last inequality holds even if y does not depend on A/ a at all, but x and y are correlated within the groups AA, Aa and aa due to nongenetic factors and segregation of genes from other chromosomes. A simple relationship connects H(2) (both in single trait and two-trait analysis) with the expected LOD value, ELOD = -1/2N log(1 - H(2)). Thus, situations could exist that from the inequality H(xy)(2) (A/ a) >/= H(x)(2) (A/ a) a higher resolution is provided by the two-trait analysis as compared to the single-trait analysis, in spite of the increased number of parameters. Employing LOD-score procedure to simulated backcross data, we showed that the resolution power of the QTL mapping model can be elevated if correlation between QTs is taken into account. The method allows us to test numerous biologically important hypotheses concerning manifold effects of genomic segments on the defined trait complex (means, variances and correlations). PMID:7672584

  14. Crop Farmers' Willingness to Pay for Agricultural Extension Services in Bangladesh: Cases of Selected Villages in Two Important Agro-Ecological Zones

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Uddin, Ektear MD.; Gao, Qijie; Mamun-Ur-Rashid, MD.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose: Globally, many extension professionals and policy-makers are advocating fee based services, in addressing the fund shortage and sustainable provision of agricultural advisory services. Hence, the article attempts to expose the farmers' willingness to pay (WTP) as agricultural extension in Bangladesh is experiencing chronic fund crisis.…

  15. Agriculture Education. Agriculture Structures.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stuttgart Public Schools, AR.

    This curriculum guide is designed for group instruction of secondary agricultural education students enrolled in one or two semester-long courses in agriculture structures. The guide presents units of study in the following areas: (1) shop safety, (2) identification and general use of hand tools, (3) power tools, (4) carpentry, (5) blueprint…

  16. Agriculture Education. Agriculture Structures.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stuttgart Public Schools, AR.

    This curriculum guide is designed for group instruction of secondary agricultural education students enrolled in one or two semester-long courses in agriculture structures. The guide presents units of study in the following areas: (1) shop safety, (2) identification and general use of hand tools, (3) power tools, (4) carpentry, (5) blueprint

  17. Department of Agriculture

    MedlinePLUS

    ... Food Safety Forestry Homeland Security Laws and Regulations Marketing and Trade Organic Agriculture Outreach Plant Health Research ... Research Food and Agriculture Research OPEDA Scholarship Program MARKETING AND TRADE Exporting Goods Importing Goods Newsroom Agency ...

  18. Association of puppies' behavioral reaction at five months of age assessed by questionnaire with their later 'Distraction' at 15 months of age, an important behavioral trait for guide dog qualification.

    PubMed

    Kobayashi, Natsuko; Arata, Sayaka; Hattori, Ai; Kohara, Yui; Kiyokawa, Yasushi; Takeuchi, Yukari; Mori, Yuji

    2013-01-31

    Guide dogs help visually impaired persons both physically and psychologically. More than half of all candidate dogs do not qualify, mainly for behavioral reasons. Improved training efficacy is desirable, and earlier prediction of qualification-related traits would be beneficial. In a previous study, we identified 'Distraction', assessed during the training period, as an important behavioral trait for judging the qualification of guide dogs at the Japan Guide Dog Association. As a second step, we aimed to develop an index that can predict during the puppy period. In this study, candidate guide dogs, 5-month-old Labrador retrievers, were assessed by puppy raisers using a newly developed questionnaire that consisted of 20 items. The same dogs were assessed later, at 15 months, by trainers to determine 'Distraction'. In principal components analysis, nine items, including excitability toward strangers, initiative while out for a walk, and exploration, composed the first principal component (PC1). When we compared PC1 points with 'Distraction' points, the two categories were positively correlated (n=110, r(s)=0.31, P=0.0009). Although the accuracy of the questionnaire should be increased, the results of the present study suggest that it may be possible to assess and predict 'Distraction', which is associated with disqualification for guide dogs, early in the puppy-raising period. PMID:22971667

  19. Landscape heterogeneity as an ecological filter of species traits

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Duflot, Rmi; Georges, Romain; Ernoult, Aude; Aviron, Stphanie; Burel, Franoise

    2014-04-01

    Landscape heterogeneity is a major driver of biodiversity in agricultural areas and represents an important parameter in conservation strategies. However, most landscape ecology studies measure gamma diversity of a single habitat type, despite the assessment of multiple habitats at a landscape scale being more appropriate. This study aimed to determine the effects of landscape composition and spatial configuration on life-history trait distribution in carabid beetle and herbaceous plant communities. Here, we assessed the gamma diversity of carabid beetles and plants by sampling three dominant habitats (woody habitats, grasslands and crops) across 20 landscapes in western France. RLQ and Fourth Corner three-table analyses were used to assess the association of dispersal, phenology, reproduction and trophic level traits with landscape characteristics. Landscape composition and configuration were both significant in explaining functional composition. Carabid beetles and plants showed similar response regarding phenology, i.e. open landscapes were associated with earlier breeding species. Carabid beetle dispersal traits exhibited the strongest relationship with landscape structure; for instance, large and apterous species preferentially inhabited woody landscapes, whereas small and macropterous species preferentially inhabited open landscapes. Heavy seeded plant species dominated in intensified agricultural landscapes (high % crops), possibly due to the removal of weeds (which are usually lightweight seeded species). The results of this study emphasise the roles of landscape composition and configuration as ecological filters and the importance of preserving a range of landscape types to maintain functional biodiversity at regional scales.

  20. A linkage map of cultivated cucumber (cucumis sativus l.) with 248 microsatellite marker loci and seven genes for horticulturally important traits

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Marker assisted selection (MAS) is playing an increasingly important role in expedite and increase the efficiency of classical plant breeding. In cucumber, MAS is lagging behind as compared with other field crops. In the present study, a genetic map was developed with microsatellite (or simple seque...

  1. Applicability of ISSR and DAMD markers for phyto-molecular characterization and association with some important biochemical traits of Dendrobium nobile, an endangered medicinal orchid.

    PubMed

    Bhattacharyya, Paromik; Kumaria, Suman; Tandon, Pramod

    2015-09-01

    Dendrobium nobile is an important medicinal orchid having profound importance in traditional herbal drug preparations and pharmacopeias worldwide. Due to various anthropogenic pressures the natural populations of this important orchid species are presently facing threats of extinction. In the present study, genetic and chemical diversity existing amongst 6 natural populations of D. nobile were assessed using molecular markers, and the influence of genetic factors on its phytochemical activity especially antioxidant potential was determined. Molecular fingerprinting of the orchid taxa was performed using ISSR and DAMD markers along with the estimation of total phenolics, flavonoids and alkaloid contents. Antioxidant activity was also measured using DPPH and FRAP assays which cumulatively revealed a significant level of variability across the sampled populations. The representatives from Sikkim in Northeast India revealed higher phytochemical activity whereas those from Mizoram showed lesser activity. Analysis of molecular variance (AMOVA) revealed that variation amongst the populations was significantly higher than within the populations. The data generated by UPGMA and Bayesian analytical models were compared in order to estimate the genetic relationships amongst the D. nobile germplasm sampled from different geographical areas of Northeast India. Interestingly, identical grouping patterns were exhibited by both the approaches. The results of the present study detected a high degree of existing genetic and phytochemical variation amongst the populations in relation to bioclimatic and geographic locations of populations. Our results strongly establish that the cumulative marker approach could be the best suited for assessing the genetic relationships with high accuracy amongst distinct D. nobile accessions. PMID:26125940

  2. Biotechnology and Agriculture.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kenney, Martin

    Even at this early date in the application of biotechnology to agriculture, it is clear that agriculture may provide the largest market for new or less expensive biotechnologically manufactured products. The chemical and pharmaceutical industries that hold important positions in agricultural inputs are consolidating their positions by purchasing

  3. Geographic Variation in the Acoustic Traits of Greater Horseshoe Bats: Testing the Importance of Drift and Ecological Selection in Evolutionary Processes

    PubMed Central

    Sun, Keping; Luo, Li; Kimball, Rebecca T.; Wei, Xuewen; Jin, Longru; Jiang, Tinglei; Li, Guohong; Feng, Jiang

    2013-01-01

    Patterns of intraspecific geographic variation of signaling systems provide insight into the microevolutionary processes driving phenotypic divergence. The acoustic calls of bats are sensitive to diverse evolutionary forces, but processes that shape call variation are largely unexplored. In China, Rhinolophus ferrumequinum displays a diverse call frequency and inhabits a heterogeneous landscape, presenting an excellent opportunity for this kind of research. We quantified geographic variation in resting frequency (RF) of echolocation calls, estimated genetic structure and phylogeny of R. ferrumequinum populations, and combined this with climatic factors to test three hypotheses to explain acoustic variation: genetic drift, cultural drift, and local adaptation. Our results demonstrated significant regional divergence in frequency and phylogeny among the bat populations in China's northeast (NE), central-east (CE) and southwest (SW) regions. The CE region had higher frequencies than the NE and SW regions. Drivers of RF divergence were estimated in the entire range and just the CE/NE region (since these two regions form a clade). In both cases, RF divergence was not correlated with mtDNA or nDNA genetic distance, but was significantly correlated with geographic distance and mean annual temperature, indicating cultural drift and ecological selection pressures are likely important in shaping RF divergence among different regions in China. PMID:23950926

  4. The importance of natural habitats to Brazilian free-tailed bats in intensive agricultural landscapes in the Winter Garden Region of Texas, United States

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The conversion of natural lands to agriculture affects the distribution of biological diversity across the landscape. In particular, cropland monocultures alter insect abundance and diversity compared to adjacent natural habitats, but nevertheless can provide large numbers of insect pests as prey i...

  5. U.S. Farm and Farm-Related Employment in 1988. How Large, Important, and Regionally Different? Agriculture Information Bulletin Number 634.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Majchrowicz, T. Alexander; Hopkins, David E.

    Farm and farm-related industries account for almost 18 percent of total U.S. employment in 1988. This share is based on a broad definition of the agricultural sector, including not only farm production but also industries that mine, manufacture, and sell farm inputs; process commodities; and sell consumer goods. Many jobs in industries that…

  6. The spatiotemporal coupled measurement of CO2, CH4, and N2O in a semi-arid agricultural stream and the importance of intra-stream studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moon Nielsen, L. G.; Orr, C. H.

    2012-12-01

    Carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), and nitrous oxide (N2O) contribute the largest share of anthropogenic produced greenhouse gases (GHGs) emitted to the atmosphere. Aquatic environments have been found to be supersaturated with GHGs and are therefore a source to the atmosphere. Studies that simultaneously measure CO2, CH4, and N2O in streams are limited in number, and in study duration. Here, we investigated GHG's coming from an agricultural stream in a set of nested catchments ranging in size from 600 ha. to 5000 ha. in the semi-arid Palouse region of eastern Washington State, USA over a duration of 13 months. Questions asked were: 1) how much CO2, CH4, and N2O is being transported downstream and at what rate are these gases being emitted to the atmosphere? 2) how does transport and emission rates of CO2, CH4, N2O fluctuate through the year and at what time of the year are minimum and maximum concentrations observed? Along the stream gradient, there were significant differences between the measured physiochemical and flow parameters through space and time. Highest yearly transport rates of CO2 and N2O were from February-May (2928.4 146.4 ?g L-1 s-1 and 19.8 0.9 ?g L-1 s-1, respectively) coinciding with highest seasonal discharge. Highest CH4 transport was during July-September, reaching 95.7 4.8 ?g L-1 s-1, coinciding with lowest seasonal discharge and anoxic conditions in surface waters. On average, stream sites were supersaturated with CO2, CH4, and N2O, but this was not always the case. During July-October transport of N2O was low (0.76 0.04 ?g L-1 s-1), but this was not consistent between sites during this time. Observed N2O transport at hydrologic minimum varied from upstream to downstream (1.8 0.1, 0.76 0.04 and 2.4 0.1 ?g L-1 s-1, respectively). Evasion of CO2, CH4, and N2O from the stream surface is expected to be a rapid process, leaving the stream prior to convergence with a larger system. Within a given month, intra-stream GHG concentrations would vary up to an order of magnitude. Findings from this study indicate significant spatial and temporal variability within the stream at this scale. For stream studies, intra-stream variability may play an important role in understanding the dynamic nature of aquatic N and C cycling. The coupled measurement of CO2, CH4, and N2O in streams is an important component to reducing uncertainty in N and C budgetary and modeling efforts, and to understanding the amount of GHGs contribution from streams in the context of global climate change policy.

  7. The Role of Electricity in Pacific Northwest Irrigated Agriculture, 1979-1987 : A Study of Irrigation Price Elasticity of Demand, the Importance of Irrigated Agriculture to Rural Communities, and an Evaluation of Alternative Targeted Rate Discount Options for Irrigation Consumers, Volume 1.

    SciTech Connect

    Northwest Economic Associates.

    1989-05-01

    Increased regional pressure for and against the wholesale rate discount has prompted BPA to evaluate the quantitative, qualitative, economic, and policy issues associated with an irrigation rate discount. BPA determined that more information was required in the following areas: Irrigation price elasticities at the subregional level (utility, group of utilities and/or production areas), importance of irrigated agriculture to local and regional economies, issues related to targeting an irrigation rate discount, and the role of BPA wholesale rates and rate discounts on Pacific Northwest sprinkler irrigation and the supporting economies. In response to this request for additional information, the analysis in the present study is conducted in four parts: Document the importance of irrigated agriculture, particularly sprinkler irrigated agriculture, to the Pacific Northwest economy and quantify the impact of the rate discount on regional agriculture and local communities; Estimate irrigation price elasticities for BPA customers at a subregional level, so that load impacts associated with the rate discount can be evaluated at a more localized level; Identify the economic, policy, and practical application issues associated with targeting a rate discount to groups of utilities or irrigators; and Review the short-term economic and policy outlook for irrigated agriculture in the Pacific Northwest and draw implications regarding the impact on producer response to electricity rates. 40 refs., 1 fig., 24 tabs.

  8. Statistical methods for dissecting triploid endosperm traits using molecular markers. An autogamous model.

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Rongling; Ma, Chang-Xing; Gallo-Meagher, Maria; Littell, Ramon C; Casella, George

    2002-01-01

    The endosperm, a result of double fertilization in flowering plants, is a triploid tissue whose genetic composition is more complex than diploid tissue. We present a new maximum-likelihood-based statistical method for mapping quantitative trait loci (QTL) underlying endosperm traits in an autogamous plant. Genetic mapping of quantitative endosperm traits is qualitatively different from traits for other plant organs because the endosperm displays complicated trisomic inheritance and represents a younger generation than its mother plant. Our endosperm mapping method is based on two different experimental designs: (1) a one-stage design in which marker information is derived from the maternal genome and (2) a two-stage hierarchical design in which marker information is derived from both the maternal and offspring genomes (embryos). Under the one-stage design, the position and additive effect of a putative QTL can be well estimated, but the estimates of the dominant and epistatic effects are upward biased and imprecise. The two-stage hierarchical design, which extracts more genetic information from the material, typically improves the accuracy and precision of the dominant and epistatic effects for an endosperm trait. We discuss the effects on the estimation of QTL parameters of different sampling strategies under the two-stage hierarchical design. Our method will be broadly useful in mapping endosperm traits for many agriculturally important crop plants and also make it possible to study the genetic significance of double fertilization in the evolution of higher plants. PMID:12399397

  9. Water Conservation for Agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Water conservation for agriculture has been important for centuries and is becoming increasingly important due to competition among agricultural and other users. Our objectives were to review progress made in our understanding of factors affecting water conservation during the past 100 years and to ...

  10. Multi-trait mimicry and the relative salience of individual traits.

    PubMed

    Kazemi, Baharan; Gamberale-Stille, Gabriella; Leimar, Olof

    2015-11-01

    Mimicry occurs when one species gains protection from predators by resembling an unprofitable model species. The degree of mimic-model similarity is variable in nature and is closely related to the number of traits that the mimic shares with its model. Here, we experimentally test the hypothesis that the relative salience of traits, as perceived by a predator, is an important determinant of the degree of mimic-model similarity required for successful mimicry. We manipulated the relative salience of the traits of a two-trait artificial model prey, and subsequently tested the survival of mimics of the different traits. The unrewarded model prey had two colour traits, black and blue, and the rewarded prey had two combinations of green, brown and grey shades. Blue tits were used as predators. We found that the birds perceived the black and blue traits to be similarly salient in one treatment, and mimic-model similarity in both traits was then required for high mimic success. In a second treatment, the blue trait was the most salient trait, and mimic-model similarity in this trait alone achieved high success. Our results thus support the idea that similar salience of model traits can explain the occurrence of multi-trait mimicry. PMID:26511051

  11. Theoretical efficiency of multiple-trait quantitative trait loci-assisted selection.

    PubMed

    Togashi, K; Lin, C Y

    2010-02-01

    The effectiveness of five selection methods for genetic improvement of net merit comprising trait 1 of low heritability (h(2) = 0.1) and trait 2 of high heritability (h(2) = 0.4) was examined: (i) two-trait quantitative trait loci (QTL)-assisted selection; (ii) partial QTL-assisted selection based on trait 1; (iii) partial QTL-assisted selection based on trait 2; (iv) QTL-only selection; and (v) conventional selection index without QTL information. These selection methods were compared under 72 scenarios with different combinations of the relative economic weights, the genetic correlations between traits, the ratio of QTL variance to total genetic variance of the trait, and the ratio of genetic variances between traits. The results suggest that the detection of QTL for multiple-trait QTL-assisted selection is more important when the index traits are negatively correlated than when they are positively correlated. In contrast to literature reports that single-trait marker-assisted selection (MAS) is the most efficient for low heritability traits, this study found that the identified QTL of the low heritability trait contributed negligibly to total response in net merit. This is because multiple-trait QTL-assisted selection is designed to maximize total net merit rather than the genetic response of the individual index trait as in the case of single-trait MAS. Therefore, it is not economical to identify the QTL of the low heritability traits for the improvement of total net merit. The efficient, cost-effective selection strategy is to identify the QTL of the moderate or high heritability traits of the QTL-assisted selection index to facilitate total economic returns. Detection of the QTL of the low h(2) traits for the QTL-assisted index selection is justified when the low h(2) traits have high negative genetic correlation with the other index traits and/or when both economic weights and genetic variances of the low h(2) traits are larger as compared to the other index traits of higher h(2). This study deals with theoretical efficiency of QTL-assisted selection, but the same principle applies to SNP-based genomic selection when the proportion of the genetic variance 'explained by the identified QTLs' in this study is replaced by 'explained by SNPs'. PMID:20074187

  12. Evolution of the teachings of chemistry in the new degrees of School of Agricultural Engineering and its importance in the acquisition of competencies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arce, Augusto; Tarquis, Ana M.; Castellanos, Maria Teresa; Requejo, Maria Isabel; Cartagena, Maria Carmen

    2014-05-01

    The academic year 2012-13 is the third year of implementation of the Bologna process in ETSI Agricultural for the subjects Chemistry I and Chemistry II in the new four Degrees: Graduate in Engineering and Agricultural Science, Food Engineering Graduate, Graduate in Engineering Environmental and Biotechnology graduate. We have implemented new interactive methodologies in the teaching-learning process based on the use of the virtual platform of the UPM, and teaching support materials and new laboratory practice developing has. It has also launched new continuous assessment systems that promote active student participation. A comparative study of academic achievements by students of the new grades in the subjects of chemistry during the last three academic years was performed to correlating the results obtained, the success rate and the drop out, and compare with the level of prior knowledge to those entering students. Possible solutions to try and fix these results in future courses are proposed Finally, the general competencies that contribute this course, how they are acquired and how they should be evaluated correctly are indicated. Acknowledgments: Innovation educative projects Nº IE02054-11/12 UPM. 2012

  13. Application of microRNA gene resources in the improvement of agronomic traits in rice.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Ling-Ling; Qu, Liang-Hu

    2015-04-01

    microRNAs (miRNAs) are important nonprotein-coding genes that are involved in almost all biological processes, including cell differentiation and fate determination, developmental regulation, and immune responses. Investigations have shown that some miRNAs can highly affect plant agricultural traits, including virus resistance, nematode resistance, drought and salinity tolerance, heavy metal detoxification, biomass yield, grain yield, fruit development and flower development. Therefore, these miRNAs are considered a newly identified gene resource for the genetic improvement of crops. In this review, we will summarize the recent findings of the rice miRNA-directed regulatory network, which controls agronomic traits such as yield, quality and stress tolerance, and explore the outlook for the uses of these miRNA-associated traits in rice biotechnology. PMID:25583449

  14. Importance of Macrophyte Quality in Determining Life-History Traits of the Apple Snails Pomacea canaliculata: Implications for Bottom-Up Management of an Invasive Herbivorous Pest in Constructed Wetlands.

    PubMed

    Yam, Rita S W; Fan, Yen-Tzu; Wang, Tzu-Ting

    2016-01-01

    Pomacea canaliculata (Ampullariidae) has extensively invaded most Asian constructed wetlands and its massive herbivory of macrophytes has become a major cause of ecosystem dysfunctioning of these restored habitats. We conducted non-choice laboratory feeding experiments of P. canaliculata using five common macrophyte species in constructed wetlands including Ipomoea aquatica, Commelina communis, Nymphoides coreana, Acorus calamus and Phragmites australis. Effects of macrophytes on snail feeding, growth and fecundity responses were evaluated. Results indicated that P. canaliculata reared on Ipomoea had the highest feeding and growth rates with highest reproductive output, but all individuals fed with Phragmites showed lowest feeding rates and little growth with poorest reproductive output. Plant N and P contents were important for enhancing palatability, supporting growth and offspring quantity of P. canaliculata, whilst toughness, cellulose and phenolics had critically deterrent effects on various life-history traits. Although snail offspring quality was generally consistent regardless of maternal feeding conditions, the reduced growth and offspring quantity of the poorly-fed snails in constructed wetlands dominated by the less-palatable macrophytes could limit the invasive success of P. canaliculata. Effective bottom-up control of P. canaliculata in constructed wetlands should involve selective planting strategy using macrophytes with low nutrient and high toughness, cellulose and phenolic contents. PMID:26927135

  15. Vocational Agriculture Education. Agricultural Mechanics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Smith, Eddie; And Others

    To assist teachers in agricultural mechanics in providing comprehensive instruction to their students, this curriculum guide treats both the mechanical skills and knowlege necessary for this specialized area. Six sections are included, as follow: orientation and safety; agricultural mechanics skills; agricultural power and machinery; agricultural

  16. Arranging the bouquet of disease: floral traits and the transmission of plant and animal pathogens.

    PubMed

    McArt, Scott H; Koch, Hauke; Irwin, Rebecca E; Adler, Lynn S

    2014-05-01

    Several floral microbes are known to be pathogenic to plants or floral visitors such as pollinators. Despite the ecological and economic importance of pathogens deposited in flowers, we often lack a basic understanding of how floral traits influence disease transmission. Here, we provide the first systematic review regarding how floral traits attract vectors (for plant pathogens) or hosts (for animal pathogens), mediate disease establishment and evolve under complex interactions with plant mutualists that can be vectors for microbial antagonists. Attraction of floral visitors is influenced by numerous phenological, morphological and chemical traits, and several plant pathogens manipulate floral traits to attract vectors. There is rapidly growing interest in how floral secondary compounds and antimicrobial enzymes influence disease establishment in plant hosts. Similarly, new research suggests that consumption of floral secondary compounds can reduce pathogen loads in animal pollinators. Given recent concerns about pollinator declines caused in part by pathogens, the role of floral traits in mediating pathogen transmission is a key area for further research. We conclude by discussing important implications of floral transmission of pathogens for agriculture, conservation and human health, suggesting promising avenues for future research in both basic and applied biology. PMID:24528408

  17. Pleiotropic patterns of quantitative trait loci for 70 murine skeletal traits.

    PubMed

    Kenney-Hunt, Jane P; Wang, Bing; Norgard, Elizabeth A; Fawcett, Gloria; Falk, Doug; Pletscher, L Susan; Jarvis, Joseph P; Roseman, Charles; Wolf, Jason; Cheverud, James M

    2008-04-01

    Quantitative trait locus (QTL) studies of a skeletal trait or a few related skeletal components are becoming commonplace, but as yet there has been no investigation of pleiotropic patterns throughout the skeleton. We present a comprehensive survey of pleiotropic patterns affecting mouse skeletal morphology in an intercross of LG/J and SM/J inbred strains (N = 1040), using QTL analysis on 70 skeletal traits. We identify 798 single-trait QTL, coalescing to 105 loci that affect on average 7-8 traits each. The number of traits affected per locus ranges from only 1 trait to 30 traits. Individual traits average 11 QTL each, ranging from 4 to 20. Skeletal traits are affected by many, small-effect loci. Significant additive genotypic values average 0.23 standard deviation (SD) units. Fifty percent of loci show codominance with heterozygotes having intermediate phenotypic values. When dominance does occur, the LG/J allele tends to be dominant to the SM/J allele (30% vs. 8%). Over- and underdominance are relatively rare (12%). Approximately one-fifth of QTL are sex specific, including many for pelvic traits. Evaluating the pleiotropic relationships of skeletal traits is important in understanding the role of genetic variation in the growth and development of the skeleton. PMID:18430949

  18. Effects of mowing cessation and hydrology on plant trait distribution in natural fen meadows

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Opdekamp, W.; Beauchard, O.; Backx, H.; Franken, F.; Cox, T. J. S.; van Diggelen, R.; Meire, P.

    2012-02-01

    Traditional grasslands are often of high conservation value, but depend on non-intensive management like mowing for their preservation. During the 20th century, traditional agricultural usage was either heavily intensified or abandoned due to socio-economic reasons. In Eastern Europe, land abandonment mainly took place in regions with qualitatively bad soils. This large scale land use change lead to secondary succession. In fens and fen meadows, this may lead to a decrease in species richness and a replacement of specialist species by more generalist ones. The main objective of the present study is to examine if and how mowing cessation interacts with hydrology in determining species and trait distribution in a fen meadow. In the Upper Course of the Biebrza National Park, Poland, we selected 15 sites along four transects, with plots in mown and abandoned parcels. In these plots we measured plant abundance, aboveground biomass and relative light intensity, while plant traits were selected from different trait databases. The relationship between these plot characteristics and the different traits was assessed using concordance analysis. Mowing cessation resulted in reduced moss cover and light availability, while vegetation height increased and higher litter deposition and tussock development were observed. This altered environment not only resulted in decreased species richness and evenness in abandoned plots but also caused shifts in plant trait distribution. Most of the significantly linked traits responded more strongly to mowing cessation than to the hydrologic gradient. Traits related to light competition, such as light requirements, plant height and shoot growth form, especially responded to mowing cessation. This stresses the importance of light competition as a major factor determining species and trait distribution in fen systems.

  19. Uncertainty quantified trait predictions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fazayeli, Farideh; Kattge, Jens; Banerjee, Arindam; Schrodt, Franziska; Reich, Peter

    2015-04-01

    Functional traits of organisms are key to understanding and predicting biodiversity and ecological change, which motivates continuous collection of traits and their integration into global databases. Such composite trait matrices are inherently sparse, severely limiting their usefulness for further analyses. On the other hand, traits are characterized by the phylogenetic trait signal, trait-trait correlations and environmental constraints, all of which provide information that could be used to statistically fill gaps. We propose the application of probabilistic models which, for the first time, utilize all three characteristics to fill gaps in trait databases and predict trait values at larger spatial scales. For this purpose we introduce BHPMF, a hierarchical Bayesian extension of Probabilistic Matrix Factorization (PMF). PMF is a machine learning technique which exploits the correlation structure of sparse matrices to impute missing entries. BHPMF additionally utilizes the taxonomic hierarchy for trait prediction. Implemented in the context of a Gibbs Sampler MCMC approach BHPMF provides uncertainty estimates for each trait prediction. We present comprehensive experimental results on the problem of plant trait prediction using the largest database of plant traits, where BHPMF shows strong empirical performance in uncertainty quantified trait prediction, outperforming the state-of-the-art based on point estimates. Further, we show that BHPMF is more accurate when it is confident, whereas the error is high when the uncertainty is high.

  20. Grassland agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agriculture in grassland environments is facing multiple stresses from: shifting demographics, declining and fragmented agricultural landscapes, declining environmental quality, variable and changing climate, volatile and increasing energy costs, marginal economic returns, and globalization. Degrad...

  1. Agricultural Production.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lehigh County Area Vocational-Technical School, Schnecksville, PA.

    This brochure describes the philosophy and scope of a secondary-level course in agricultural production. Addressed in the individual units of the course are the following topics: careers in agriculture and agribusiness, animal science and livestock production, agronomy, agricultural mechanics, supervised occupational experience programs, and the

  2. QUANTITATIVE TRAIT LOCI FOR WINTER HARDINESS COMPONENT TRAITS IN OAT

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Winter hardiness is an important limitation to winter oat (Avena byzantina and A. sativa) production in much of North America, but field evaluation of winter hardiness is difficult. The discovery of quantitative trait loci for winter hardiness should allow markers assisted selection for winter hard...

  3. WETLAND AND AGRICULTURE

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The values of wetlands are commonly known among the general population. More importantly, ecological wetland functions such as nutrient cycling and mitigation of pollutants are becoming more recognized, especially in the agricultural community. Certain agricultural crops thrive in the moist, rich ...

  4. AGRICULTURAL HEALTH STUDY

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Agricultural Health Study is a large cohort of 90,000 licensed pesticide applicators, plus 30,000 spouses and 20,000 children who are exposed either directly or indirectly. Exposure to pesticides is widespread and is important beyond the agricultural community. Other exposure...

  5. Agriculture in the Midwest

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agriculture in the Midwest United States (Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, and Wisconsin) represents one of the most intense areas of agriculture in the world. This area is not only critically important for the United States, but also for world exports of grain and meat for the Un...

  6. Motivational Traits of Elite Young Soccer Players

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stewart, Craig; Meyers, Michael C.

    2004-01-01

    Among the most overlooked aspects in the development of elite young soccer players is that of specific psychological traits. Of those traits, motivation has important implications for programs whose objectives are identification and cultivation of young, skilled performers. The growth in popularity of soccer by youth and the successes experienced

  7. Valence Effects in Reasoning About Evaluative Traits

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Heyman, Gail D.; Giles, Jessica W.

    2004-01-01

    Trait conceptions, such as smart, antisocial, and shy, can serve as tools for interpreting and making predictions about the social world. An understanding of children?s trait conceptions can lead to important insights into the way children acquire an understanding of human mental life. The present study was designed to examine positivity biases

  8. [Effects of agricultural activities and transgenic crops on agricultural biodiversity].

    PubMed

    Zhang, Xi-Tao; Luo, Hong-Bing; Li, Jun-Sheng; Huang, Hai; Liu, Yong-Bo

    2014-09-01

    Agricultural biodiversity is a key part of the ecosystem biodiversity, but it receives little concern. The monoculture, environmental pollution and habitat fragmentation caused by agricultural activities have threatened agricultural biodiversity over the past 50 years. To optimize agricultural management measures for crop production and environmental protection, we reviewed the effects of agricultural activities, including cultivation patterns, plastic mulching, chemical additions and the cultivation of transgenic crops, on agricultural biodiversity. The results showed that chemical pesticides and fertilizers had the most serious influence and the effects of transgenic crops varied with other factors like the specific transgene inserted in crops. The environmental risk of transgenic crops should be assessed widely through case-by-case methods, particularly its potential impacts on agricultural biodiversity. It is important to consider the protection of agricultural biodiversity before taking certain agricultural practices, which could improve agricultural production and simultaneously reduce the environmental impacts. PMID:25757330

  9. Potential for selection of beneficial traits in swine with site-specific sucleases

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Selective breeding in agricultural species has enabled the derivation of stronger and fitter animals with improved production traits. However, along with beneficial traits there is often the co-segregation of less desirable traits. With the plethora of genome data and annotation, and greater under...

  10. The Importance of Considering the Temporal Distribution of Climate Variables for Ecological-Economic Modeling to Calculate the Consequences of Climate Change for Agriculture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Plegnière, Sabrina; Casper, Markus; Hecker, Benjamin; Müller-Fürstenberger, Georg

    2014-05-01

    The basis of many models to calculate and assess climate change and its consequences are annual means of temperature and precipitation. This method leads to many uncertainties especially at the regional or local level: the results are not realistic or too coarse. Particularly in agriculture, single events and the distribution of precipitation and temperature during the growing season have enormous influences on plant growth. Therefore, the temporal distribution of climate variables should not be ignored. To reach this goal, a high-resolution ecological-economic model was developed which combines a complex plant growth model (STICS) and an economic model. In this context, input data of the plant growth model are daily climate values for a specific climate station calculated by the statistical climate model (WETTREG). The economic model is deduced from the results of the plant growth model STICS. The chosen plant is corn because corn is often cultivated and used in many different ways. First of all, a sensitivity analysis showed that the plant growth model STICS is suitable to calculate the influences of different cultivation methods and climate on plant growth or yield as well as on soil fertility, e.g. by nitrate leaching, in a realistic way. Additional simulations helped to assess a production function that is the key element of the economic model. Thereby the problems when using mean values of temperature and precipitation in order to compute a production function by linear regression are pointed out. Several examples show why a linear regression to assess a production function based on mean climate values or smoothed natural distribution leads to imperfect results and why it is not possible to deduce a unique climate factor in the production function. One solution for this problem is the additional consideration of stress indices that show the impairment of plants by water or nitrate shortage. Thus, the resulting model takes into account not only the ecological factors (e.g. the plant growth) or the economical factors as a simple monetary calculation, but also their mutual influences. Finally, the ecological-economic model enables us to make a risk assessment or evaluate adaptation strategies.

  11. Association of N2-fixing Cyanobacteria and Plants: Towards Novel Symbioses of Agricultural Importance. Final report, 1 April 1996 to 31 May 1997

    SciTech Connect

    Gantar, Miroslav

    1999-03-01

    The goal of this project is to characterize an association that takes place between the roots of wheat and the nitrogen-fixing cyanobacterium Nostoc 2S9. By understanding how the association takes place and the extent to which it permits the growth of the plant without exogenous nitrogenous fertilizer, it may prove possible to increase the benefits of the association and to extend them to other plants of agrinomic importance.

  12. Multilocus phylogeny reveals an association of agriculturally important Fusarium solani species complex (FSSC) 11, and clinically important FSSC 5 and FSSC 3 + 4 with soybean roots in the north central United States.

    PubMed

    Chitrampalam, P; Nelson, B

    2016-02-01

    The Fusarium solani species complex (FSSC) includes important root pathogens of soybean in the United States, but the evolutionary lineages associated with soybean root rot are unknown. A multilocus phylogeny based on 93 isolates from soybean and pea roots from North Dakota and Minnesota revealed that root rot was associated with three known phylogenetic species, FSSC 3 + 4 (=Fusarium falciforme) (3 % of isolates), FSSC 5 (60 %), FSSC 11 (34 %), and one unknown species, FSSC X (2 %). Of these species FSSC 5 and FSSC 3 + 4 are clinically important while FSSC 11 is a plant pathogen. Isolates from FSSC 11 were pathogenic on soybean, dry bean, pea and lentil, and did not grow at 37 °C. However, isolates from FSSC 5 were weakly to non-pathogenic, but grew at 37 °C. Isolates from both FSSC 5 and FSSC 11 were highly resistant to fludioxonil in vitro. This is the first study revealing the pathogenic robustness of FSSC 11 in causing root rot among Fabaceae crops and also the association of clinically important members of the FSSC with roots of a widely grown field crop in the United States. PMID:26671414

  13. Genetically modified bacteria in agriculture.

    PubMed

    Amarger, N

    2002-11-01

    Certain bacteria isolated from soils possess properties that allow them to exert beneficial effects on plants either by enhancing crop nutrition or by reducing damages caused by pathogens or pests. Some of them, such as rhizobia, azospirilla, and agrobacteria, have been traditionally released in fields as seed inoculants and they often lead to increases in the yield of different crops while the application of others, such as pseudomonads, often fails to give the expected results. Bacteria genetically modified to be easily traceable and/or to be improved in their expression of beneficial traits have been constructed and released with plants in a number of experimental field plots. With these releases, it has been possible to monitor the modified inoculant bacteria after their introduction in field ecosystems and to assess their impact on the resident microflora. Local environmental factors appeared as playing a crucial role in the survival and persistence of bacteria once released in fields and in the expression of the beneficial traits whether improved or not. The spread of inoculant bacteria from their point of dissemination was limited. Transient shifts in favour of the released bacteria and in disfavour of some members of the bacterial and fungal populations present in the plant rhizosphere might occur with certain released bacteria. The changes observed were, however, less important than those observed under usual agricultural practices. Gene transfer from resident population to introduced bacteria was detected in one case. The transconjugants were found only transiently in the phytosphere of plants but not in soils. No differences between the survival, spread, persistence in field and ecological impacts of genetically modified bacteria and of the corresponding unmodified parent strain could be detected. PMID:12595134

  14. Characterizing invertebrate traits in wadeable streams of the contiguous US: differences among ecoregions and land uses

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Zuellig, Robert E.; Schmidt, Travis S.

    2012-01-01

    Much is known about invertebrate community traits in basins across Europe, but no comprehensive description of traits exists for the continental US. Little is known about the trait composition of invertebrates in reference or least-disturbed basins of the US, how trait composition varies among ecoregions, or how consistently traits respond to land use. These elements are essential to development of trait-based tools for conservation and assessment of biological integrity. We compared invertebrate traits of least-disturbed basins among ecoregions of the US. Benthic invertebrate data (presence/absence) from 1987 basins were translated into 56 binary traits (e.g., bivoltine, clinger). Basins were classified as least-disturbed, agricultural, or urban, and grouped into 9 ecoregions. Landuse, climatic, physiographic, and hydrologic data were used to describe ecoregions and to evaluate least-disturbed basin quality. The unique habitat template of each ecoregion selected for trait compositions in least-disturbed basins that differed among ecoregions. Among the traits examined, life-history (e.g., voltinism, development) and ecological traits (e.g., rheophily, thermal preference) differed most among ecoregions. Agricultural and urban land uses selected for trait compositions that differed from least-disturbed, but the extent of the differences depended on ecoregion and quality of the least-disturbed basins. No trait compositions unique to specific land uses were found. However, a disturbance syndrome was observed in that the magnitude and direction of trait responses to urban and agricultural land uses were consistent among ecoregions. Each ecoregion had a unique trait composition, but trait compositions could be used to aggregate ecoregions into 3 broad regions: Western Mountains, Plains and Lowlands, and Eastern Highlands. Our results indicate that large-scale trait-based assessment tools for the US will require calibration to account for regional differences in the trait composition of basins and in the quality of least-disturbed basins.

  15. Agricultural ecosystems

    SciTech Connect

    Kindscher, K.

    1984-01-01

    The agricultural ecosystem concept promotes a distinctive set of ecological principles that give diversity and stability to the food production process. This system allows people to work more closely with nature and to feel a spiritual connection with the earth. Agricultural ecosystems can be designed to provide numerous advantages. They can be energy conserving, more permanent, make better use of space, reduce and eliminate the need for pesticides, tillage, and chemical fertilizers, and provide food for the local community. The agricultural ecosystem model presented is most suitable for a small-scale farmer or market gardener, but the principles can also be applied on a larger or smaller acreage. The agricultural ecosystem concept is a model-building process that will go through successional stages to a more mature food-producing plant community. The agricultural ecosystem concept expresses permanence and ecology, and is a step toward sustainable agriculture. 55 references, 4 figures.

  16. Migration and dispersal may drive to high genetic variation and significant genetic mixing: the case of two agriculturally important, continental hoverflies (Episyrphus balteatus and Sphaerophoria scripta).

    PubMed

    Raymond, Lucie; Plantegenest, Manuel; Vialatte, Aude

    2013-11-01

    Population structure of pests and beneficial species is an important issue when designing management strategies to optimize ecosystem services. In this study, we investigated for the first time the population structure at a continental scale of two migratory species of hoverflies providing both pest regulation and pollination services [Episyrphus balteatus and Sphaerophoria scripta (Diptera: Syrphidae)]. To achieve this objective, we used two sets of 12 species-specific microsatellite markers on a large-scale sampling from all over Europe. Our findings showed a high level of genetic mixing resulting in a lack of genetic differentiation at a continental scale and a great genetic diversity in the two species. All the pairwise FST values between European localities were less 0.05 in the two species. These low values reflect a large-scale genetic mixing probably caused by the existence of frequent migratory movements in the two species. Mantel tests revealed isolation-by-distance pattern on the East-West axis, but not on the North-South axis. This isolation-by-distance pattern confirms the existence of North-South migratory movements in both directions and suggests an important step by step dispersal. Population features shown by this study are common in invasive species and pests, but are not often observed in beneficial species. They reflect great colonization abilities and a high adaptive potential when dealing with a changing environment. Our results highlight the two studied species as particularly interesting beneficial insects for pollination and pest predation in the current context of global change. PMID:24138027

  17. Agriculture, summary

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Baldwin, R.

    1975-01-01

    Applications of remotely sensed data in agriculture are enumerated. These include: predictions of forage for range animal consumption, forest management, soil mapping, and crop inventory and management.

  18. A hierarchical bayesian approach to multi-trait clinical quantitative trait locus modeling.

    PubMed

    Mutshinda, Crispin M; Noykova, Neli; Sillanp, Mikko J

    2012-01-01

    Recent advances in high-throughput genotyping and transcript profiling technologies have enabled the inexpensive production of genome-wide dense marker maps in tandem with huge amounts of expression profiles. These large-scale data encompass valuable information about the genetic architecture of important phenotypic traits. Comprehensive models that combine molecular markers and gene transcript levels are increasingly advocated as an effective approach to dissecting the genetic architecture of complex phenotypic traits. The simultaneous utilization of marker and gene expression data to explain the variation in clinical quantitative trait, known as clinical quantitative trait locus (cQTL) mapping, poses challenges that are both conceptual and computational. Nonetheless, the hierarchical Bayesian (HB) modeling approach, in combination with modern computational tools such as Markov chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) simulation techniques, provides much versatility for cQTL analysis. Sillanp and Noykova (2008) developed a HB model for single-trait cQTL analysis in inbred line cross-data using molecular markers, gene expressions, and marker-gene expression pairs. However, clinical traits generally relate to one another through environmental correlations and/or pleiotropy. A multi-trait approach can improve on the power to detect genetic effects and on their estimation precision. A multi-trait model also provides a framework for examining a number of biologically interesting hypotheses. In this paper we extend the HB cQTL model for inbred line crosses proposed by Sillanp and Noykova to a multi-trait setting. We illustrate the implementation of our new model with simulated data, and evaluate the multi-trait model performance with regard to its single-trait counterpart. The data simulation process was based on the multi-trait cQTL model, assuming three traits with uncorrelated and correlated cQTL residuals, with the simulated data under uncorrelated cQTL residuals serving as our test set for comparing the performances of the multi-trait and single-trait models. The simulated data under correlated cQTL residuals were essentially used to assess how well our new model can estimate the cQTL residual covariance structure. The model fitting to the data was carried out by MCMC simulation through OpenBUGS. The multi-trait model outperformed its single-trait counterpart in identifying cQTLs, with a consistently lower false discovery rate. Moreover, the covariance matrix of cQTL residuals was typically estimated to an appreciable degree of precision under the multi-trait cQTL model, making our new model a promising approach to addressing a wide range of issues facing the analysis of correlated clinical traits. PMID:22685451

  19. Assessing the Importance of Incorporating Spatial and Temporal Variability of Soil and Plant Parameters into Local Water Balance Models for Precision Agriculture: Investigations within a California Vineyard

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hubbard, S.; Pierce, L.; Grote, K.; Rubin, Y.

    2003-12-01

    Due Due to the high cash crop nature of premium winegrapes, recent research has focused on developing a better understanding of the factors that influence winegrape spatial and temporal variability. Precision grapevine irrigation schemes require consideration of the factors that regulate vineyard water use such as (1) plant parameters, (2) climatic conditions, and (3) water availability in the soil as a function of soil texture. The inability to sample soil and plant parameters accurately, at a dense enough resolution, and over large enough areas has limited previous investigations focused on understanding the influences of soil water and vegetation on water balance at the local field scale. We have acquired several novel field data sets to describe the small scale (decimeters to a hundred meters) spatial variability of soil and plant parameters within a 4 acre field study site at the Robert Mondavi Winery in Napa County, California. At this site, we investigated the potential of ground penetrating radar data (GPR) for providing estimates of near surface water content. Calibration of grids of 900 MHz GPR groundwave data with conventional soil moisture measurements revealed that the GPR volumetric water content estimation approach was valid to within 1 percent accuracy, and that the data grids provided unparalleled density of soil water content over the field site as a function of season. High-resolution airborne multispectral remote sensing data was also collected at the study site, which was converted to normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) and correlated to leaf area index (LAI) using plant-based measurements within a parallel study. Meteorological information was available from a weather station of the California Irrigation management Information System, located less than a mile from our study area. The measurements were used within a 2-D Vineyard Soil Irrigation Model (VSIM), which can incorporate the spatially variable, high-resolution soil and plant-based information. VSIM, which is based on the concept that equilibrium exists between climate, soils, and LAI, was used to simulate vine water stress, water use, and irrigation requirements during a single year for the site. Using the simple water-balance model with the dense characterization data, we will discuss: (1) the ability to predict vineyard soil water content at the small scales of soil heterogeneity that are observed in nature at the local-scale, (2) the relative importance of plant, climate, and soil information to predictions of the soil water balance at the site, (3) the influence of crop cover in the water balance predictions.

  20. Agricultural Wastes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jewell, W. J.; Switzenbaum, M. S.

    1978-01-01

    Presents a literature review of agricultural wastes, covering publications of 1976-77. Some of the areas covered are: (1) water characteristics and impacts; (2) waste treatment; (3) reuse of agricultural wastes; and (4) nonpoint pollution sources. A list of 150 references is also presented. (HM)

  1. Importance of rhizobia in Agriculture: potential of the commercial inoculants and native strains for improving legume yields in different land-use systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lesueur, D.; Atieno, M.; Mathu, S.; Herrmann, L.

    2012-04-01

    Legumes play an important role in the traditional diets of many regions throughout the world because they provide a multitude of benefits to both the soil and other crops grown in combination with them or following them in several cropping systems. The ability of legumes to fix atmospheric nitrogen in association with rhizobia gives them the capacity to grow in very degraded soils. But do we have to systematically inoculate legumes? For example our results suggested that the systematic inoculation of both cowpea and green gram in Kenya with commercial inoculants to improve yields is not really justified, native strains performing better than inoculated strains. But when native rhizobia nodulating legumes are not naturally present, application of rhizobial inoculants is very commonly used. Our results showed that the utilization of effective good-quality rhizobial inoculants by farmers have a real potential to improve legume yields in unfertile soils requesting high applications of mineral fertilizers. For example an effective soybean commercial inoculants was tested in different locations in Kenya (in about 150 farms in 3 mandate areas presenting different soil characteristics and environmental conditions). Application of the rhizobial inoculant significantly increased the soybean yields in all mandate areas (about 75% of the farms). Nodule occupancy analysis showed that a high number of nodules occupied by the inoculated strain did not obviously lead to an increase of soybean production. Soil factors (pH, P, C, N…) seemed to affect the inoculant efficiency whether the strain is occupying the nodules or not. Our statistic analysis showed that soil pH significantly affected nodulation and yield, though the effect was variable depending on the region. We concluded that the competitiveness of rhizobial strains might not be the main factor explaining the effect (or lack of) of legumes inoculation in the field. Another study was aiming to assess if several factors such as cropping systems, N fertilization and application of crop residues affect the genetic diversity of native strains of rhizobia nodulating soybean in Kenya without any inoculation. Results showed that nodulation was not significantly affected by the different factors except N fertilization, regardless the season. Nodule occupancy revealed only 3 main profiles representing 93.6% and 92.5% of all the RFLP profiles obtained from 2008 and 2009 nodules respectively. This suggested a low diversity of native rhizobial strains capable to nodulate the promiscuous variety. The cropping system, Nitrogen and Residue applications didn't increase the diversity of the rhizobia but results indicated an effect on the distribution of the 3 profiles within the nodules of the plants. Within same treatments, significant differences were found between the two seasons in term of strains occupying the nodules. It could be explained by the shorter rainfall received in 2008 compared to 2009. Results suggest that cropping systems and both N and crop residues applications affect more specifically plant growth and grain yields than the diversity of the native rhizobia nodulating promiscuous soybean variety. Our work shows how diverse are the factors influencing the success of the field rhizobial inoculation of legumes.

  2. Relating Stomatal Conductance to Leaf Functional Traits.

    PubMed

    Krber, Wenzel; Plath, Isa; Heklau, Heike; Bruelheide, Helge

    2015-01-01

    Leaf functional traits are important because they reflect physiological functions, such as transpiration and carbon assimilation. In particular, morphological leaf traits have the potential to summarize plants strategies in terms of water use efficiency, growth pattern and nutrient use. The leaf economics spectrum (LES) is a recognized framework in functional plant ecology and reflects a gradient of increasing specific leaf area (SLA), leaf nitrogen, phosphorus and cation content, and decreasing leaf dry matter content (LDMC) and carbon nitrogen ratio (CN). The LES describes different strategies ranging from that of short-lived leaves with high photosynthetic capacity per leaf mass to long-lived leaves with low mass-based carbon assimilation rates. However, traits that are not included in the LES might provide additional information on the species' physiology, such as those related to stomatal control. Protocols are presented for a wide range of leaf functional traits, including traits of the LES, but also traits that are independent of the LES. In particular, a new method is introduced that relates the plants' regulatory behavior in stomatal conductance to vapor pressure deficit. The resulting parameters of stomatal regulation can then be compared to the LES and other plant functional traits. The results show that functional leaf traits of the LES were also valid predictors for the parameters of stomatal regulation. For example, leaf carbon concentration was positively related to the vapor pressure deficit (vpd) at the point of inflection and the maximum of the conductance-vpd curve. However, traits that are not included in the LES added information in explaining parameters of stomatal control: the vpd at the point of inflection of the conductance-vpd curve was lower for species with higher stomatal density and higher stomatal index. Overall, stomata and vein traits were more powerful predictors for explaining stomatal regulation than traits used in the LES. PMID:26484692

  3. Relating Stomatal Conductance to Leaf Functional Traits

    PubMed Central

    Kröber, Wenzel; Plath, Isa; Heklau, Heike; Bruelheide, Helge

    2015-01-01

    Leaf functional traits are important because they reflect physiological functions, such as transpiration and carbon assimilation. In particular, morphological leaf traits have the potential to summarize plants strategies in terms of water use efficiency, growth pattern and nutrient use. The leaf economics spectrum (LES) is a recognized framework in functional plant ecology and reflects a gradient of increasing specific leaf area (SLA), leaf nitrogen, phosphorus and cation content, and decreasing leaf dry matter content (LDMC) and carbon nitrogen ratio (CN). The LES describes different strategies ranging from that of short-lived leaves with high photosynthetic capacity per leaf mass to long-lived leaves with low mass-based carbon assimilation rates. However, traits that are not included in the LES might provide additional information on the species' physiology, such as those related to stomatal control. Protocols are presented for a wide range of leaf functional traits, including traits of the LES, but also traits that are independent of the LES. In particular, a new method is introduced that relates the plants’ regulatory behavior in stomatal conductance to vapor pressure deficit. The resulting parameters of stomatal regulation can then be compared to the LES and other plant functional traits. The results show that functional leaf traits of the LES were also valid predictors for the parameters of stomatal regulation. For example, leaf carbon concentration was positively related to the vapor pressure deficit (vpd) at the point of inflection and the maximum of the conductance-vpd curve. However, traits that are not included in the LES added information in explaining parameters of stomatal control: the vpd at the point of inflection of the conductance-vpd curve was lower for species with higher stomatal density and higher stomatal index. Overall, stomata and vein traits were more powerful predictors for explaining stomatal regulation than traits used in the LES. PMID:26484692

  4. A functional trait perspective on plant invasion

    PubMed Central

    Drenovsky, Rebecca E.; Grewell, Brenda J.; D'Antonio, Carla M.; Funk, Jennifer L.; James, Jeremy J.; Molinari, Nicole; Parker, Ingrid M.; Richards, Christina L.

    2012-01-01

    Background and Aims Global environmental change will affect non-native plant invasions, with profound potential impacts on native plant populations, communities and ecosystems. In this context, we review plant functional traits, particularly those that drive invader abundance (invasiveness) and impacts, as well as the integration of these traits across multiple ecological scales, and as a basis for restoration and management. Scope We review the concepts and terminology surrounding functional traits and how functional traits influence processes at the individual level. We explore how phenotypic plasticity may lead to rapid evolution of novel traits facilitating invasiveness in changing environments and then ‘scale up’ to evaluate the relative importance of demographic traits and their links to invasion rates. We then suggest a functional trait framework for assessing per capita effects and, ultimately, impacts of invasive plants on plant communities and ecosystems. Lastly, we focus on the role of functional trait-based approaches in invasive species management and restoration in the context of rapid, global environmental change. Conclusions To understand how the abundance and impacts of invasive plants will respond to rapid environmental changes it is essential to link trait-based responses of invaders to changes in community and ecosystem properties. To do so requires a comprehensive effort that considers dynamic environmental controls and a targeted approach to understand key functional traits driving both invader abundance and impacts. If we are to predict future invasions, manage those at hand and use restoration technology to mitigate invasive species impacts, future research must focus on functional traits that promote invasiveness and invader impacts under changing conditions, and integrate major factors driving invasions from individual to ecosystem levels. PMID:22589328

  5. Complex trait architecture: the pleiotropic model revisited

    PubMed Central

    North, T.-L.; Beaumont, M. A.

    2015-01-01

    There is currently much debate about how much the genetic heritability of complex traits is due to very rare alleles. This issue is important because it determines sampling strategies for genetic association studies. Several recent theoretical papers based on a pleiotropic model for trait evolution suggest that it is possible that a large proportion of the genetic variance could be explained by rare alleles. This model assumes that mutations with a large effect on fitness also tend to have large positive or negative effects on phenotypic traits. We show that conclusions based on standard diffusion results are generally applicable to simulations of whole genomes with overlapping generations in a finite population, although the variance contribution of rare alleles is somewhat smaller than theoretical predictions. We show that under many scenarios the pleiotropic model predicts trait distributions that are unrealistically leptokurtic. We argue that this imposes a limit on the relationship between fitness and trait effects. PMID:25792462

  6. FishTraits Database

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Angermeier, Paul L.; Frimpong, Emmanuel A.

    2009-01-01

    The need for integrated and widely accessible sources of species traits data to facilitate studies of ecology, conservation, and management has motivated development of traits databases for various taxa. In spite of the increasing number of traits-based analyses of freshwater fishes in the United States, no consolidated database of traits of this group exists publicly, and much useful information on these species is documented only in obscure sources. The largely inaccessible and unconsolidated traits information makes large-scale analysis involving many fishes and/or traits particularly challenging. FishTraits is a database of >100 traits for 809 (731 native and 78 exotic) fish species found in freshwaters of the conterminous United States, including 37 native families and 145 native genera. The database contains information on four major categories of traits: (1) trophic ecology, (2) body size and reproductive ecology (life history), (3) habitat associations, and (4) salinity and temperature tolerances. Information on geographic distribution and conservation status is also included. Together, we refer to the traits, distribution, and conservation status information as attributes. Descriptions of attributes are available here. Many sources were consulted to compile attributes, including state and regional species accounts and other databases.

  7. Hierarchical traits distances explain grassland Fabaceae species' ecological niches distances

    PubMed Central

    Fort, Florian; Jouany, Claire; Cruz, Pablo

    2015-01-01

    Fabaceae species play a key role in ecosystem functioning through their capacity to fix atmospheric nitrogen via their symbiosis with Rhizobium bacteria. To increase benefits of using Fabaceae in agricultural systems, it is necessary to find ways to evaluate species or genotypes having potential adaptations to sub-optimal growth conditions. We evaluated the relevance of phylogenetic distance, absolute trait distance and hierarchical trait distance for comparing the adaptation of 13 grassland Fabaceae species to different habitats, i.e., ecological niches. We measured a wide range of functional traits (root traits, leaf traits, and whole plant traits) in these species. Species phylogenetic and ecological distances were assessed from a species-level phylogenetic tree and species' ecological indicator values, respectively. We demonstrated that differences in ecological niches between grassland Fabaceae species were related more to their hierarchical trait distances than to their phylogenetic distances. We showed that grassland Fabaceae functional traits tend to converge among species with the same ecological requirements. Species with acquisitive root strategies (thin roots, shallow root systems) are competitive species adapted to non-stressful meadows, while conservative ones (coarse roots, deep root systems) are able to tolerate stressful continental climates. In contrast, acquisitive species appeared to be able to tolerate low soil-P availability, while conservative ones need high P availability. Finally we highlight that traits converge along the ecological gradient, providing the assumption that species with similar root-trait values are better able to coexist, regardless of their phylogenetic distance. PMID:25741353

  8. Hierarchical traits distances explain grassland Fabaceae species' ecological niches distances.

    PubMed

    Fort, Florian; Jouany, Claire; Cruz, Pablo

    2015-01-01

    Fabaceae species play a key role in ecosystem functioning through their capacity to fix atmospheric nitrogen via their symbiosis with Rhizobium bacteria. To increase benefits of using Fabaceae in agricultural systems, it is necessary to find ways to evaluate species or genotypes having potential adaptations to sub-optimal growth conditions. We evaluated the relevance of phylogenetic distance, absolute trait distance and hierarchical trait distance for comparing the adaptation of 13 grassland Fabaceae species to different habitats, i.e., ecological niches. We measured a wide range of functional traits (root traits, leaf traits, and whole plant traits) in these species. Species phylogenetic and ecological distances were assessed from a species-level phylogenetic tree and species' ecological indicator values, respectively. We demonstrated that differences in ecological niches between grassland Fabaceae species were related more to their hierarchical trait distances than to their phylogenetic distances. We showed that grassland Fabaceae functional traits tend to converge among species with the same ecological requirements. Species with acquisitive root strategies (thin roots, shallow root systems) are competitive species adapted to non-stressful meadows, while conservative ones (coarse roots, deep root systems) are able to tolerate stressful continental climates. In contrast, acquisitive species appeared to be able to tolerate low soil-P availability, while conservative ones need high P availability. Finally we highlight that traits converge along the ecological gradient, providing the assumption that species with similar root-trait values are better able to coexist, regardless of their phylogenetic distance. PMID:25741353

  9. Agriculture Education. Agricultural Metal Working.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stuttgart Public Schools, AR.

    This curriculum guide is designed for group instruction of secondary agricultural education students enrolled in one or two semester-long courses in agricultural metal working. The guide presents units of study in the following areas: (1) oxyacetylene welding, (2) arc welding, (3) sheet metal, (4) blueprint reading for welders and (5) job

  10. Agricultural Energy Practices. Agriculture Energy.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Crank, Ron

    This instructional unit is one of 10 developed by students on various energy-related areas that deals specifically with agricultural energy practices. Its objective is for the student to be able to discuss energy use and conservation of resources in the production of agricultural products. Some topics covered are basic uses of direct energy in

  11. Agriculture Education. Agricultural Metal Working.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stuttgart Public Schools, AR.

    This curriculum guide is designed for group instruction of secondary agricultural education students enrolled in one or two semester-long courses in agricultural metal working. The guide presents units of study in the following areas: (1) oxyacetylene welding, (2) arc welding, (3) sheet metal, (4) blueprint reading for welders and (5) job…

  12. Agricultural Energy Practices. Agriculture Energy.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Crank, Ron

    This instructional unit is one of 10 developed by students on various energy-related areas that deals specifically with agricultural energy practices. Its objective is for the student to be able to discuss energy use and conservation of resources in the production of agricultural products. Some topics covered are basic uses of direct energy in…

  13. Alternative agriculture

    SciTech Connect

    Hileman, B. )

    1990-03-01

    This paper discusses alternative agriculture which has suddenly become topical. Farmers practicing alternative agriculture are still a small minority in the overall farm community. But their farming methods, which among other things are aimed at improving profits, limiting dependence on agricultural chemicals, and increasing use of environmentally friendly procedures, are attracting more attention and a growing number of adherents. Hard data on the productivity of alternative farming compared with conventional techniques are still sketchy at best, although many practitioners seem to be operating quite successfully. And in their success lies the potential for significant impact on markets for fertilizers and pesticides.

  14. Agricultural Microbiology.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brill, Winston J.

    1981-01-01

    Elucidates strategies for applying microbiological techniques to traditional agricultural practices. Discusses the manipulation of microorganisms that live with plants and also the problems involved in the introduction of new genes into crop plants by recombinant DNA methods. (CS)

  15. Agricultural Geophysics

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The four geophysical methods predominantly used for agricultural purposes are resistivity, electromagnetic induction, ground penetrating radar (GPR), and time domain reflectometry (TDR). Resistivity and electromagnetic induction methods are typically employed to map lateral variations of apparent so...

  16. Agricultural Waste.

    PubMed

    Shu, Huajie; Zhang, Panpan; Chang, Chein-Chi; Wang, Renqing; Zhang, Shuping

    2015-10-01

    The management and disposal of agricultural waste are drawn more and more attention because of the increasing yields and negative effects on the environment. However, proper treatments such as converting abundant biomass wastes into biogas through anaerobic digestion technology, can not only avoid the negative impacts, but also convert waste into available resources. This review summarizes the studies of nearly two hundred scholars from the following four aspects: the characterization, reuse, treatment, and management of agricultural waste. PMID:26420088

  17. Urban conservation agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Vegetables are important sources of vitamins and nutrients for human nutrition. United States Department of Agriculture recommends filling half of the food plates with vegetables in every meal. While it is important in promoting good health, access to fresh vegetables is limited especially in urban ...

  18. Feasibility of automated body trait determination using the SR4K time-of-flight camera in cow barns.

    PubMed

    Salau, Jennifer; Haas, Jan H; Junge, Wolfgang; Bauer, Ulrike; Harms, Jan; Bieletzki, Sascha

    2014-01-01

    As herd sizes have increased in the last decades, computerized monitoring solutions, which provide fast, objective and accurate evaluations of the herd status, gain more and more importance. This study analyzes the feasibility of a Time-of-Flight-camera-based system for gathering body traits in dairy cows for use under cow barn conditions. Recording, determination of body condition score on a 5 point scale by visual and manual inspection, and measuring the backfat thickness with ultrasound took place from July 2011 to May 2012 at the dairy research farm Karkendamm of the Institute of Animal Breeding and Husbandry, Christian-Albrechts-University Kiel (Germany) and between August 2010 and July 2012 at the Institute for Agricultural Engineering and Animal Husbandry of Bavarian State Research Center for Agriculture in Grub (Germany). The two breeds Holstein Friesian cows (Karkendamm) and Fleckvieh (Grub) were considered in this study. Software for recording, image sorting and evaluation, determining the body parts needed, and extracting traits from the images was written and assembled to an automated system. Sorting the images and finding ischeal tuberosities, base of the tail, and dishes of the rump, backbone, and hips had error rates of 0.2%, 1.5%, 0.1%, and 2.6%, respectively. 13 traits were extracted and compared to backfat thickness and body condition score as well as between breeds. All traits depend significantly on the animal and showed very large effect sizes. Coefficients of determination restricted to individual animals were reaching up to 0.89. The precision in measuring the traits and gathering backfat thickness was comparable. Results indicated that the application of Time-Of-Flight in determination of body traits is feasible. PMID:26034657

  19. Generalized Latent Trait Models.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Moustaki, Irini; Knott, Martin

    2000-01-01

    Discusses a general model framework within which manifest variables with different distributions in the exponential family can be analyzed with a latent trait model. Presents a unified maximum likelihood method for estimating the parameters of the generalized latent trait model and discusses the scoring of individuals on the latent dimensions.…

  20. Genome-enabled predictions for binomial traits in sugar beet populations

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Genomic information can be used to predict not only continuous but also categorical (e.g. binomial) traits. Several traits of interest in human medicine and agriculture present a discrete distribution of phenotypes (e.g. disease status). Root vigor in sugar beet (B. vulgaris) is an example of binomial trait of agronomic importance. In this paper, a panel of 192 SNPs (single nucleotide polymorphisms) was used to genotype 124 sugar beet individual plants from 18 lines, and to classify them as showing high or low root vigor. Results A threshold model was used to fit the relationship between binomial root vigor and SNP genotypes, through the matrix of genomic relationships between individuals in a genomic BLUP (G-BLUP) approach. From a 5-fold cross-validation scheme, 500 testing subsets were generated. The estimated average cross-validation error rate was 0.000731 (0.073%). Only 9 out of 12326 test observations (500 replicates for an average test set size of 24.65) were misclassified. Conclusions The estimated prediction accuracy was quite high. Such accurate predictions may be related to the high estimated heritability for root vigor (0.783) and to the few genes with large effect underlying the trait. Despite the sparse SNP panel, there was sufficient within-scaffold LD where SNPs with large effect on root vigor were located to allow for genome-enabled predictions to work. PMID:25053450

  1. Nonparametric Modeling of Longitudinal Covariance Structure in Functional Mapping of Quantitative Trait Loci

    PubMed Central

    Yap, John Stephen; Fan, Jianqing; Wu, Rongling

    2010-01-01

    Estimation of the covariance structure of longitudinal processes is a fundamental prerequisite for the practical deployment of functional mapping designed to study the genetic regulation and network of quantitative variation in dynamic complex traits. We present a nonparametric approach for estimating the covariance structure of a quantitative trait measured repeatedly at a series of time points. Specifically, we adopt Huang et al.s (2006a) approach of invoking the modified Cholesky decomposition and converting the problem into modeling a sequence of regressions of responses. A regularized covariance estimator is obtained using a normal penalized likelihood with an L2 penalty. This approach, embedded within a mixture likelihood framework, leads to enhanced accuracy, precision and flexibility of functional mapping while preserving its biological relevance. Simulation studies are performed to reveal the statistical properties and advantages of the proposed method. A real example from a mouse genome project is analyzed to illustrate the utilization of the methodology. The new method will provide a useful tool for genome-wide scanning for the existence and distribution of quantitative trait loci underlying a dynamic trait important to agriculture, biology and health sciences. PMID:19302406

  2. Understanding the genetic control and physiological traits associated with rhizosheath production by barley (Hordeum vulgare).

    PubMed

    George, Timothy S; Brown, Lawrie K; Ramsay, Luke; White, Philip J; Newton, Adrian C; Bengough, A Glyn; Russell, Joanne; Thomas, William T B

    2014-07-01

    There is an urgent need for simple rapid screens of root traits that improve the acquisition of nutrients and water. Temperate cereals produce rhizosheaths of variable weight, a trait first noted on desert species sampled by Tansley over 100 yr ago. This trait is almost certainly important in tolerance to abiotic stress. Here, we screened association genetics populations of barley for rhizosheath weight and derived quantitative trait loci (QTLs) and candidate genes. We assessed whether rhizosheath weight was correlated with plant performance and phosphate uptake under combined drought and phosphorus deficiency. Rhizosheath weight was investigated in relation to root hair length, and under both laboratory and field conditions. Our data demonstrated that rhizosheath weight was correlated with phosphate uptake under dry conditions and that the differences in rhizosheath weight between genotypes were maintained in the field. Rhizosheath weight also varied significantly within barley populations, was correlated with root hair length and was associated with a genetic locus (QTL) on chromosome 2H. Putative candidate genes were identified. Rhizosheath weight is easy and rapid to measure, and is associated with relatively high heritability. The breeding of cereal genotypes for beneficial rhizosheath characteristics is achievable and could contribute to agricultural sustainability in nutrient- and water-stressed environments. PMID:24684319

  3. Species traits and environmental constraints: entomological research and the history of ecological theory.

    PubMed

    Statzner, B; Hildrew, A G; Resh, V H

    2001-01-01

    The role that entomology has played in the historical (1800s-1970s) development of ecological theories that match species traits with environmental constraints is reviewed along three lineages originating from the ideas of a minister (Malthus TR. 1798. An Essay on the Principle of Population. London: Johnson) and a chemist (Liebig J. 1840. Die Organische Chemie in ihrer Anwendung auf Agricultur und Physiologie. Braunschweig: Vieweg). Major developments in lineage 1 focus on habitat as a filter for species traits, succession, nonequilibrium and equilibrium conditions, and generalizations about the correlation of traits to environmental constraints. In lineage 2, we trace the evolution of the niche concept and focus on ecophysiological traits, biotic interactions, and environmental conditions. Finally, we describe the conceptual route from early demographic studies of human and animal populations to the r-K concept in lineage 3. In the 1970s, the entomologist Southwood merged these three lineages into the "habitat templet concept" (Southwood TRE. 1977. J. Anim. Ecol. 46:337-65), which has stimulated much subsequent research in entomology and general ecology. We conclude that insects have been a far more important resource for the development of ecological theory than previously acknowledged. PMID:11112171

  4. Predicting microbial traits with phylogenies.

    PubMed

    Goberna, Marta; Verdú, Miguel

    2016-04-01

    Phylogeny reflects genetic and phenotypic traits in Bacteria and Archaea. The phylogenetic conservatism of microbial traits has prompted the application of phylogeny-based algorithms to predict unknown trait values of extant taxa based on the traits of their evolutionary relatives to estimate, for instance, rRNA gene copy numbers, gene contents or tolerance to abiotic conditions. Unlike the 'macrobial' world, microbial ecologists face scenarios potentially compromising the accuracy of trait reconstruction methods, as, for example, extremely large phylogenies and limited information on the traits of interest. We review 990 bacterial and archaeal traits from the literature and support that phylogenetic trait conservatism is widespread through the tree of life, while revealing that it is generally weak for ecologically relevant phenotypic traits and high for genetically complex traits. We then perform a simulation exercise to assess the accuracy of phylogeny-based trait predictions in common scenarios faced by microbial ecologists. Our simulations show that ca. 60% of the variation in phylogeny-based trait predictions depends on the magnitude of the trait conservatism, the number of species in the tree, the proportion of species with unknown trait values and the mean distance in the tree to the nearest neighbour with a known trait value. Results are similar for both binary and continuous traits. We discuss these results under the light of the reviewed traits and provide recommendations for the use of phylogeny-based trait predictions for microbial ecologists. PMID:26371406

  5. Emerging Agricultural Biotechnologies for Sustainable Agriculture and Food Security.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Jennifer A; Gipmans, Martijn; Hurst, Susan; Layton, Raymond; Nehra, Narender; Pickett, John; Shah, Dilip M; Souza, Thiago Lívio P O; Tripathi, Leena

    2016-01-20

    As global populations continue to increase, agricultural productivity will be challenged to keep pace without overtaxing important environmental resources. A dynamic and integrated approach will be required to solve global food insecurity and position agriculture on a trajectory toward sustainability. Genetically modified (GM) crops enhanced through modern biotechnology represent an important set of tools that can promote sustainable agriculture and improve food security. Several emerging biotechnology approaches were discussed in a recent symposium organized at the 13th IUPAC International Congress of Pesticide Chemistry meeting in San Francisco, CA, USA. This paper summarizes the innovative research and several of the new and emerging technologies within the field of agricultural biotechnology that were presented during the symposium. This discussion highlights how agricultural biotechnology fits within the context of sustainable agriculture and improved food security and can be used in support of further development and adoption of beneficial GM crops. PMID:26785813

  6. Agricultural Biodiversity.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Postance, Jim

    1998-01-01

    The extinction of farm animals and crops is rarely brought up during discussions of endangered species and biodiversity; however, the loss of diversity in crops and livestock threatens the sustainability of agriculture. Presents three activities: (1) "The Colors of Diversity"; (2) "Biodiversity among Animals"; and (3) "Heirloom Plants." Discusses

  7. Agricultural Biodiversity.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Postance, Jim

    1998-01-01

    The extinction of farm animals and crops is rarely brought up during discussions of endangered species and biodiversity; however, the loss of diversity in crops and livestock threatens the sustainability of agriculture. Presents three activities: (1) "The Colors of Diversity"; (2) "Biodiversity among Animals"; and (3) "Heirloom Plants." Discusses…

  8. 7 CFR 1230.10 - Imported.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Imported. 1230.10 Section 1230.10 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (MARKETING AGREEMENTS... Imported. Imported means entered, or withdrawn from a warehouse for consumption, in the customs...

  9. Genomic imprinting effects on complex traits in domesticated animal species

    PubMed Central

    O’Doherty, Alan M.; MacHugh, David E.; Spillane, Charles; Magee, David A.

    2015-01-01

    Monoallelically expressed genes that exert their phenotypic effect in a parent-of-origin specific manner are considered to be subject to genomic imprinting, the most well understood form of epigenetic regulation of gene expression in mammals. The observed differences in allele specific gene expression for imprinted genes are not attributable to differences in DNA sequence information, but to specific chemical modifications of DNA and chromatin proteins. Since the discovery of genomic imprinting some three decades ago, over 100 imprinted mammalian genes have been identified and considerable advances have been made in uncovering the molecular mechanisms regulating imprinted gene expression. While most genomic imprinting studies have focused on mouse models and human biomedical disorders, recent work has highlighted the contributions of imprinted genes to complex trait variation in domestic livestock species. Consequently, greater understanding of genomic imprinting and its effect on agriculturally important traits is predicted to have major implications for the future of animal breeding and husbandry. In this review, we discuss genomic imprinting in mammals with particular emphasis on domestic livestock species and consider how this information can be used in animal breeding research and genetic improvement programs. PMID:25964798

  10. Evaluation and Exploration of Favorable QTL Alleles for Salt Stress Related Traits in Cotton Cultivars (G. hirsutum L.)

    PubMed Central

    Du, Lei; Cai, Caiping; Wu, Shuang; Zhang, Fang; Hou, Sen; Guo, Wangzhen

    2016-01-01

    Soil salinization is one of the major problems in global agricultural production. Cotton is a pioneer crop with regard to salt stress tolerance, and can be used for saline-alkali land improvement. The large-scale detection of salt tolerance traits in cotton accessions, and the identification of elite quantitative trait loci (QTLs)/genes for salt-tolerance have been very important in salt tolerance breeding. Here, 43 advanced salt-tolerant and 31 highly salt-sensitive cultivars were detected by analyzing ten salt tolerance related traits in 304 upland cotton cultivars. Among them, 11 advanced salt-tolerance and eight highly salt-sensitive cultivars were consistent with previously reported results. Association analysis of ten salt-tolerance related traits and 145 SSRs was performed, and a total of 95 significant associations were detected; 17, 41, and 37 of which were associated with germinative index, seedling stage physiological index, and four seedling stage biochemical indexes, respectively. Of these associations, 20 SSR loci were simultaneously associated with two or more traits. Furthermore, we detected 117 elite alleles associated with salt-tolerance traits, 4 of which were reported previously. Among these loci, 44 (37.60%) were rare alleles with a frequency of less than 5%, 6 only existed in advanced salt-tolerant cultivars, and 2 only in highly salt-sensitive cultivars. As a result, 13 advanced salt-tolerant cultivars were selected to assemble the optimal cross combinations by computer simulation for the development of salt-tolerant accessions. This study lays solid foundations for further improvements in cotton salt-tolerance by referencing elite germplasms, alleles associated with salt-tolerance traits, and optimal crosses. PMID:26943816

  11. Developing Leadership Traits.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hall, Susan King

    1980-01-01

    Defines six leadership traits that are necessary to and fostered by editing a college newspaper: delegating authority, developing subordinates, motivating others, being approachable, commanding respect, and bringing out optimum performances in others. (TJ)

  12. 7 CFR 201.38 - Importations.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 3 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Importations. 201.38 Section 201.38 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (Standards, Inspections, Marketing Practices), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE (CONTINUED) FEDERAL SEED ACT FEDERAL SEED...

  13. 7 CFR 996.6 - Importation.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 8 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Importation. 996.6 Section 996.6 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (Marketing Agreements and Orders; Fruits, Vegetables, Nuts), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE MINIMUM QUALITY AND...

  14. 7 CFR 996.6 - Importation.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 8 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Importation. 996.6 Section 996.6 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (Marketing Agreements and Orders; Fruits, Vegetables, Nuts), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE MINIMUM QUALITY AND...

  15. 7 CFR 1221.13 - Importer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Importer. 1221.13 Section 1221.13 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (MARKETING AGREEMENTS AND ORDERS; MISCELLANEOUS COMMODITIES), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE SORGHUM PROMOTION, RESEARCH, AND INFORMATION ORDER Sorghum Promotion,...

  16. 7 CFR 1210.502 - Importer members.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Importer members. 1210.502 Section 1210.502 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (MARKETING AGREEMENTS AND ORDERS; MISCELLANEOUS COMMODITIES), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE WATERMELON RESEARCH...

  17. 7 CFR 1210.502 - Importer members.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Importer members. 1210.502 Section 1210.502 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (MARKETING AGREEMENTS AND ORDERS; MISCELLANEOUS COMMODITIES), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE WATERMELON RESEARCH...

  18. 7 CFR 1210.502 - Importer members.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Importer members. 1210.502 Section 1210.502 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (MARKETING AGREEMENTS AND ORDERS; MISCELLANEOUS COMMODITIES), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE WATERMELON RESEARCH...

  19. Evaluating Callous-Unemotional Traits as a Personality Construct.

    PubMed

    Frick, Paul J; Ray, James V

    2015-12-01

    We evaluate the importance of callous-unemotional (CU) traits as a personality construct in isolation from other facets of psychopathy. Specifically, we review research suggesting that these traits are useful for designating a subgroup of youth with serious conduct problems who differ from other antisocial youth on important biological, emotional, cognitive, and social characteristics. In addition, the temperamental features related to CU traits are risk factors for impairments in conscience development in young children. Thus, these traits could advance theoretical models explaining the development of severe antisocial behavior and psychopathy. CU traits also have important clinical utility because they designate a particularly severe and impaired subgroup of antisocial youth, leading to their inclusion in the DSM-5. As a result of this inclusion in diagnostic classification, there has been an increased focus on how to best assess CU traits, and we discuss several key issues in their assessment, highlighting several limitations in existing measures. Finally, the increased use of CU traits, separately from other facets of psychopathy, makes it important to determine how these traits relate to other personality constructs. Thus, we examine how measures of CU traits relate to the broader construct of psychopathy and to other basic personality dimensions. PMID:25039236

  20. Evaluating simulated functional trait patterns and quantifying modelled trait diversity effects on simulated ecosystem fluxes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pavlick, R.; Schimel, D.

    2014-12-01

    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. First, we compare simulated present-day geographical patterns of functional traits with empirical trait observations (in-situ and from airborne imaging spectroscopy). The observed trait patterns are then used to improve the tradeoff parameterizations of JeDi-DGVM. Finally, focusing primarily on the simulated leaf traits, we run the model with various amounts of trait diversity. We quantify the effects of these modeled biodiversity manipulations on simulated ecosystem fluxes and stocks for both present-day conditions and transient climate change scenarios. The simulation results reveal that the coarse treatment of plant functional traits by current PFT-based vegetation models may contribute substantial uncertainty regarding carbon-climate feedbacks. Further development of trait-based models and further investment in global in-situ and spectroscopic plant trait observations are needed.

  1. Agricultural Meteorology in China.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rosenberg, Norman J.

    1982-03-01

    During nearly five weeks in China (May-June 1981), the author visited scientific institutions and experiment stations engaged in agricultural meterology and climatology research and teaching. The facilities, studies, and research programs at each institution are described and the scientific work in these fields is evaluated. Agricultural meteorology and climatology are faced with some unique problems and opportunities in China and progress in these fields may be of critical importance to that nation in coming years. The author includes culinary notes and comments on protocol in China.

  2. Contrasting genetic architectures in different mouse reference populations used for studying complex traits

    PubMed Central

    Buchner, David A.; Nadeau, Joseph H.

    2015-01-01

    Quantitative trait loci (QTLs) are being used to study genetic networks, protein functions, and systems properties that underlie phenotypic variation and disease risk in humans, model organisms, agricultural species, and natural populations. The challenges are many, beginning with the seemingly simple tasks of mapping QTLs and identifying their underlying genetic determinants. Various specialized resources have been developed to study complex traits in many model organisms. In the mouse, remarkably different pictures of genetic architectures are emerging. Chromosome Substitution Strains (CSSs) reveal many QTLs, large phenotypic effects, pervasive epistasis, and readily identified genetic variants. In contrast, other resources as well as genome-wide association studies (GWAS) in humans and other species reveal genetic architectures dominated with a relatively modest number of QTLs that have small individual and combined phenotypic effects. These contrasting architectures are the result of intrinsic differences in the study designs underlying different resources. The CSSs examine context-dependent phenotypic effects independently among individual genotypes, whereas with GWAS and other mouse resources, the average effect of each QTL is assessed among many individuals with heterogeneous genetic backgrounds. We argue that variation of genetic architectures among individuals is as important as population averages. Each of these important resources has particular merits and specific applications for these individual and population perspectives. Collectively, these resources together with high-throughput genotyping, sequencing and genetic engineering technologies, and information repositories highlight the power of the mouse for genetic, functional, and systems studies of complex traits and disease models. PMID:25953951

  3. Preface: Biocatalysis and Agricultural Biotechnology

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This book was assembled with the intent of bringing together current advances and in-depth reviews of biocatalysis and agricultural biotechnology with emphasis on bio-based products and agricultural biotechnology. Recent energy and food crises point out the importance of bio-based products from ren...

  4. Integrating microbial traits into ecosystem models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Allison, S. D.

    2012-12-01

    Diverse bacterial and fungal communities control the decomposition of complex organic material, thereby driving important ecosystem functions such as CO2 production and nutrient regeneration. Predicting these functions is challenging because microbial communities and the chemical substrates they metabolize are complex. To address this challenge, I developed a theoretical model of microbial decomposition based on microbial traits involved in substrate degradation, uptake, and growth. The model represents a large number of microbial taxa, each of which possesses a set of trait values drawn at random from empirically-based distributions. The model also includes a large number of chemical substrates that can be degraded by microbial extracellular enzymes and taken up by membrane transporters. Microbes with different trait values for enzyme production and uptake capacity compete for chemical substrates and vary in abundance during model runs. I used the model to predict rates of plant litter decomposition and determine which traits were associated with high microbial abundance under different environmental conditions. The model predicted that optimal traits depend on the level of enzyme production in the whole community, which determines resource availability and decomposition rates. There is also evidence for facilitation and competition among microbial taxa that co-occur on decomposing litter, suggesting that microbial interactions may play a role in determining ecosystem function. These interactions vary with community investment in extracellular enzyme production and the magnitude of tradeoffs affecting biochemical traits such as enzyme kinetic parameters. The model accounted for 69% of the variation in decomposition rates and up to 26% of the variation in enzyme activities in an empirical dataset with 15 types of Hawaiian plant litter. By explicitly representing microbial diversity, trait-based models can predict ecosystem processes based on functional trait distributions in a community. Traits influencing microbial enzyme production are some of the key controls on litter decomposition rates, but other traits may control different ecosystem processes and microbial responses to environmental change. Identifying these traits and their inter-relationships is an essential step for improving ecosystem models.

  5. Fates beyond traits: ecological consequences of human-induced trait change

    PubMed Central

    Palkovacs, Eric P; Kinnison, Michael T; Correa, Cristian; Dalton, Christopher M; Hendry, Andrew P

    2012-01-01

    Human-induced trait change has been documented in freshwater, marine, and terrestrial ecosystems worldwide. These trait changes are driven by phenotypic plasticity and contemporary evolution. While efforts to manage human-induced trait change are beginning to receive some attention, managing its ecological consequences has received virtually none. Recent work suggests that contemporary trait change can have important effects on the dynamics of populations, communities, and ecosystems. Therefore, trait changes caused by human activity may be shaping ecological dynamics on a global scale. We present evidence for important ecological effects associated with human-induced trait change in a variety of study systems. These effects can occur over large spatial scales and impact system-wide processes such as trophic cascades. Importantly, the magnitude of these effects can be on par with those of traditional ecological drivers such as species presence. However, phenotypic change is not always an agent of ecological change; it can also buffer ecosystems against change. Determining the conditions under which phenotypic change may promote vs prevent ecological change should be a top research priority. PMID:25568040

  6. Association mapping for morphological and physiological traits in Populus simonii

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background To optimize marker-assisted selection programs, knowledge of the genetic architecture of phenotypic traits is very important for breeders. Generally, most phenotypes, e.g. morphological and physiological traits, are quantitatively inherited, and thus detection of the genes underlying variation for these traits is difficult. Association mapping based on linkage disequilibrium has recently become a powerful approach to map genes or quantitative trait loci (QTL) in plants. Results In this study, association analysis using 20 simple sequence repeat (SSR) markers was performed to detect the marker loci linked to 13 morphological traits and 10 physiological traits in a wild P. simonii population that consisted of 528 individuals sampled from 16 sites along the Yellow River in China. Based on a model controlling for both population structure (Q) and relative kinship (K), three SSR markers (GCPM_616-1 in 31.2 Mb on LG I, GCPM_4055-2 in 5.7 Mb on LG XV, and GCPM_3142 of unknown location) were identified for seven traits. GCPM_616-1 was associated with five morphological traits (R2 = 5.14-10.09%), whereas GCPM_3142 (15.03%) and GCPM_4055-2 (13.26%) were associated with one morphological trait and one physiological trait, respectively. Conclusions The results suggest that this wild population is suitable for association mapping and the identified markers will be suitable for marker-assisted selection breeding or detection of target genes or QTL in the near future. PMID:25079290

  7. First impressions: gait cues drive reliable trait judgements.

    PubMed

    Thoresen, John C; Vuong, Quoc C; Atkinson, Anthony P

    2012-09-01

    Personality trait attribution can underpin important social decisions and yet requires little effort; even a brief exposure to a photograph can generate lasting impressions. Body movement is a channel readily available to observers and allows judgements to be made when facial and body appearances are less visible; e.g., from great distances. Across three studies, we assessed the reliability of trait judgements of point-light walkers and identified motion-related visual cues driving observers' judgements. The findings confirm that observers make reliable, albeit inaccurate, trait judgements, and these were linked to a small number of motion components derived from a Principal Component Analysis of the motion data. Parametric manipulation of the motion components linearly affected trait ratings, providing strong evidence that the visual cues captured by these components drive observers' trait judgements. Subsequent analyses suggest that reliability of trait ratings was driven by impressions of emotion, attractiveness and masculinity. PMID:22717166

  8. Circadian clock genes universally control key agricultural traits

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Circadian clocks are endogenous timers that enable plants to synchronize biological processes with daily and seasonal environmental conditions in order to allocate resources during the most beneficial times of day and year. The circadian clock regulates a number of central plant activities, includin...

  9. Origins of Metastatic Traits

    PubMed Central

    Vanharanta, Sakari; Massagu, Joan

    2014-01-01

    How cancer cells acquire the competence to colonize distant organs remains a central question in cancer biology. Tumors can release large numbers of cancer cells into the circulation, but only a small proportion of these cells survive on infiltrating distant organs and even fewer form clinically meaningful metastases. During the past decade, many predictive gene signatures and specific mediators of metastasis have been identified, yet how cancer cells acquire these traits has remained obscure. Recent experimental work and high-resolution sequencing of human tissues have started to reveal the molecular and tumor evolutionary principles that underlie the emergence of metastatic traits. PMID:24135279

  10. Estimation of genetic parameters for reproductive traits in alpacas.

    PubMed

    Cruz, A; Cervantes, I; Burgos, A; Morante, R; Gutiérrez, J P

    2015-12-01

    One of the main deficiencies affecting animal breeding programs in Peruvian alpacas is the low reproductive performance leading to low number of animals available to select from, decreasing strongly the selection intensity. Some reproductive traits could be improved by artificial selection, but very few information about genetic parameters exists for these traits in this specie. The aim of this study was to estimate genetic parameters for six reproductive traits in alpacas both in Suri (SU) and Huacaya (HU) ecotypes, as well as their genetic relationship with fiber and morphological traits. Dataset belonging to Pacomarca experimental farm collected between 2000 and 2014 was used. Number of records for age at first service (AFS), age at first calving (AFC), copulation time (CT), pregnancy diagnosis (PD), gestation length (GL), and calving interval (CI) were, respectively, 1704, 854, 19,770, 5874, 4290 and 934. Pedigree consisted of 7742 animals. Regarding reproductive traits, model of analysis included additive and residual random effects for all traits, and also permanent environmental effect for CT, PD, GL and CI traits, with color and year of recording as fixed effects for all the reproductive traits and also age at mating and sex of calf for GL trait. Estimated heritabilities, respectively for HU and SU were 0.19 and 0.09 for AFS, 0.45 and 0.59 for AFC, 0.04 and 0.05 for CT, 0.07 and 0.05 for PD, 0.12 and 0.20 for GL, and 0.14 and 0.09 for CI. Genetic correlations between them ranged from -0.96 to 0.70. No important genetic correlations were found between reproductive traits and fiber or morphological traits in HU. However, some moderate favorable genetic correlations were found between reproductive and either fiber and morphological traits in SU. According to estimated genetic correlations, some reproductive traits might be included as additional selection criteria in HU. PMID:26490188

  11. Dispersal strategies of phytophagous insects at a local scale: adaptive potential of aphids in an agricultural environment

    PubMed Central

    Lombaert, Eric; Boll, Roger; Lapchin, Laurent

    2006-01-01

    Background The spread of agriculture greatly modified the selective pressures exerted by plants on phytophagous insects, by providing these insects with a high-level resource, structured in time and space. The life history, behavioural and physiological traits of some insect species may have evolved in response to these changes, allowing them to crowd on crops and to become agricultural pests. Dispersal, which is one of these traits, is a key concept in evolutionary biology but has been over-simplified in most theoretical studies. We evaluated the impact of the local-scale dispersal strategy of phytophagous insects on their fitness, using an individual-based model to simulate population dynamics and dispersal between leaves and plants, by walking and flying, of the aphid Aphis gossypii, a major agricultural pest, in a melon field. We compared the optimal values for dispersal parameters in the model with the corresponding observed values in experimental trials. Results We show that the rates of walking and flying disperser production on leaves were the most important traits determining the fitness criteria, whereas dispersal distance and the clustering of flying dispersers on the target plant had no effect. We further show that the effect of dispersal parameters on aphid fitness depended strongly on plant characteristics. Conclusion Parameters defining the dispersal strategies of aphids at a local scale are key components of the fitness of these insects and may thus be essential in the adaptation to agricultural environments that are structured in space and time. Moreover, the fact that the effect of dispersal parameters on aphid fitness depends strongly on plant characteristics suggests that traits defining aphid dispersal strategies may be a cornerstone of host-plant specialization. PMID:17014710

  12. Association analysis of candidate SNPs on reproductive traits in swine

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Being able to identify young females with superior reproduction traits would have a large financial impact on commercial swine producers. Previous studies have discovered SNPs associated with economically important traits such as litter size, growth rate, fat deposition, and feed intake. The objecti...

  13. Environmental drivers of trait changes in Photorhabdus luminescens

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Biological control agents have become increasingly important in integrated pest management programs. However, certain traits of these agents that are needed for efficient biocontrol often decrease or are lost during in vitro rearing. Trait deterioration can result from genetic or environmental cause...

  14. Inheritance of floral and plant size traits in hydrangea macrophylla

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Transgressive segregation occurs when trait values for offspring in experimental crosses fall outside (either above or below) the range of values recorded for the parents. Transgressive segregation is important to plant breeders as a source of novel or extreme traits. While widespread, it is diffic...

  15. Variance Component Quantitative Trait Locus Analysis for Body Weight Traits in Purebred Korean Native Chicken.

    PubMed

    Cahyadi, Muhammad; Park, Hee-Bok; Seo, Dong-Won; Jin, Shil; Choi, Nuri; Heo, Kang-Nyeong; Kang, Bo-Seok; Jo, Cheorun; Lee, Jun-Heon

    2016-01-01

    Quantitative trait locus (QTL) is a particular region of the genome containing one or more genes associated with economically important quantitative traits. This study was conducted to identify QTL regions for body weight and growth traits in purebred Korean native chicken (KNC). F1 samples (n = 595) were genotyped using 127 microsatellite markers and 8 single nucleotide polymorphisms that covered 2,616.1 centi Morgan (cM) of map length for 26 autosomal linkage groups. Body weight traits were measured every 2 weeks from hatch to 20 weeks of age. Weight of half carcass was also collected together with growth rate. A multipoint variance component linkage approach was used to identify QTLs for the body weight traits. Two significant QTLs for growth were identified on chicken chromosome 3 (GGA3) for growth 16 to18 weeks (logarithm of the odds [LOD] = 3.24, Nominal p value = 0.0001) and GGA4 for growth 6 to 8 weeks (LOD = 2.88, Nominal p value = 0.0003). Additionally, one significant QTL and three suggestive QTLs were detected for body weight traits in KNC; significant QTL for body weight at 4 weeks (LOD = 2.52, nominal p value = 0.0007) and suggestive QTL for 8 weeks (LOD = 1.96, Nominal p value = 0.0027) were detected on GGA4; QTLs were also detected for two different body weight traits: body weight at 16 weeks on GGA3 and body weight at 18 weeks on GGA19. Additionally, two suggestive QTLs for carcass weight were detected at 0 and 70 cM on GGA19. In conclusion, the current study identified several significant and suggestive QTLs that affect growth related traits in a unique resource pedigree in purebred KNC. This information will contribute to improving the body weight traits in native chicken breeds, especially for the Asian native chicken breeds. PMID:26732327

  16. Two-trait-locus linkage analysis: A powerful strategy for mapping complex genetic traits

    SciTech Connect

    Schork, N.J.; Boehnke, M. ); Terwilliger, J.D.; Ott, J. )

    1993-11-01

    Nearly all diseases mapped to date follow clear Mendelian, single-locus segregation patterns. In contrast, many common familial diseases such as diabetes, psoriasis, several forms of cancer, and schizophrenia are familial and appear to have a genetic component but do not exhibit simple Mendelian transmission. More complex models are required to explain the genetics of these important diseases. In this paper, the authors explore two-trait-locus, two-marker-locus linkage analysis in which two trait loci are mapped simultaneously to separate genetic markers. The authors compare the utility of this approach to standard one-trait-locus, one-marker-locus linkage analysis with and without allowance for heterogeneity. The authors also compare the utility of the two-trait-locus, two-marker-locus analysis to two-trait-locus, one-marker-locus linkage analysis. For common diseases, pedigrees are often bilineal, with disease genes entering via two or more unrelated pedigree members. Since such pedigrees often are avoided in linkage studies, the authors also investigate the relative information content of unilineal and bilineal pedigrees. For the dominant-or-recessive and threshold models that the authors consider, the authors find that two-trait-locus, two-marker-locus linkage analysis can provide substantially more linkage information, as measured by expected maximum lod score, than standard one-trait-locus, one-marker-locus methods, even allowing for heterogeneity, while, for a dominant-or-dominant generating model, one-locus models that allow for heterogeneity extract essentially as much information as the two-trait-locus methods. For these three models, the authors also find that bilineal pedigrees provide sufficient linkage information to warrant their inclusion in such studies. The authors discuss strategies for assessing the significance of the two linkages assumed in two-trait-locus, two-marker-locus models. 37 refs., 1 fig., 4 tabs.

  17. Variance Component Quantitative Trait Locus Analysis for Body Weight Traits in Purebred Korean Native Chicken

    PubMed Central

    Cahyadi, Muhammad; Park, Hee-Bok; Seo, Dong-Won; Jin, Shil; Choi, Nuri; Heo, Kang-Nyeong; Kang, Bo-Seok; Jo, Cheorun; Lee, Jun-Heon

    2016-01-01

    Quantitative trait locus (QTL) is a particular region of the genome containing one or more genes associated with economically important quantitative traits. This study was conducted to identify QTL regions for body weight and growth traits in purebred Korean native chicken (KNC). F1 samples (n = 595) were genotyped using 127 microsatellite markers and 8 single nucleotide polymorphisms that covered 2,616.1 centi Morgan (cM) of map length for 26 autosomal linkage groups. Body weight traits were measured every 2 weeks from hatch to 20 weeks of age. Weight of half carcass was also collected together with growth rate. A multipoint variance component linkage approach was used to identify QTLs for the body weight traits. Two significant QTLs for growth were identified on chicken chromosome 3 (GGA3) for growth 16 to18 weeks (logarithm of the odds [LOD] = 3.24, Nominal p value = 0.0001) and GGA4 for growth 6 to 8 weeks (LOD = 2.88, Nominal p value = 0.0003). Additionally, one significant QTL and three suggestive QTLs were detected for body weight traits in KNC; significant QTL for body weight at 4 weeks (LOD = 2.52, nominal p value = 0.0007) and suggestive QTL for 8 weeks (LOD = 1.96, Nominal p value = 0.0027) were detected on GGA4; QTLs were also detected for two different body weight traits: body weight at 16 weeks on GGA3 and body weight at 18 weeks on GGA19. Additionally, two suggestive QTLs for carcass weight were detected at 0 and 70 cM on GGA19. In conclusion, the current study identified several significant and suggestive QTLs that affect growth related traits in a unique resource pedigree in purebred KNC. This information will contribute to improving the body weight traits in native chicken breeds, especially for the Asian native chicken breeds. PMID:26732327

  18. 7 CFR 980.1 - Import regulations; Irish potatoes.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 8 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Import regulations; Irish potatoes. 980.1 Section 980.1 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (Marketing Agreements and Orders; Fruits, Vegetables, Nuts), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE VEGETABLES; IMPORT REGULATIONS § 980.1 Import...

  19. 7 CFR 980.212 - Import regulations; tomatoes.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 8 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Import regulations; tomatoes. 980.212 Section 980.212 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (Marketing Agreements and Orders; Fruits, Vegetables, Nuts), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE VEGETABLES; IMPORT REGULATIONS § 980.212 Import...

  20. Trait emotional intelligence influences on academic achievement and school behaviour.

    PubMed

    Mavroveli, Stella; Sánchez-Ruiz, María José

    2011-03-01

    BACKGROUND. Trait emotional intelligence (trait EI or trait emotional self-efficacy) refers to individuals' emotion-related self-perceptions (Petrides, Furnham, & Mavroveli, 2007). The children's trait EI sampling domain provides comprehensive coverage of their affective personality. Preliminary evidence shows that the construct has important implications for children's psychological and behavioural adjustment. AIMS. This study investigates the associations between trait EI and school outcomes, such as performance in reading, writing, and maths, peer-rated behaviour and social competence, and self-reported bullying behaviours in a sample of primary school children. It also examines whether trait EI scores differentiate between children with and without special educational needs (SEN). SAMPLE. The sample comprised 565 children (274 boys and 286 girls) between the ages of 7 and 12 (M((age)) = 9.12 years, SD= 1.27 years) attending three English state primary schools. METHOD. Pupils completed the Trait Emotional Intelligence Questionnaire-Child Form (TEIQue-CF), the Guess Who peer assessment, the Peer-Victimization Scale, and the Bullying Behaviour Scale. Additional data on achievement and SEN were collected from the school archives. RESULTS. As predicted by trait EI theory, associations between trait EI and academic achievement were modest and limited to Year 3 children. Higher trait EI scores were related to more nominations from peers for prosocial behaviours and fewer nominations for antisocial behaviour as well as lower scores on self-reported bulling behaviours. Furthermore, SEN students scored lower on trait EI compared to students without SEN. CONCLUSIONS. Trait EI holds important and multifaceted implications for the socialization of primary schoolchildren. PMID:21199490

  1. Mapping of quantitative trait loci controlling adaptive traits in coastal Douglas fir. III. Quantitative trait loci-by-environment interactions.

    PubMed Central

    Jermstad, Kathleen D; Bassoni, Daniel L; Jech, Keith S; Ritchie, Gary A; Wheeler, Nicholas C; Neale, David B

    2003-01-01

    Quantitative trait loci (QTL) were mapped in the woody perennial Douglas fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii var. menziesii [Mirb.] Franco) for complex traits controlling the timing of growth initiation and growth cessation. QTL were estimated under controlled environmental conditions to identify QTL interactions with photoperiod, moisture stress, winter chilling, and spring temperatures. A three-generation mapping population of 460 cloned progeny was used for genetic mapping and phenotypic evaluations. An all-marker interval mapping method was used for scanning the genome for the presence of QTL and single-factor ANOVA was used for estimating QTL-by-environment interactions. A modest number of QTL were detected per trait, with individual QTL explaining up to 9.5% of the phenotypic variation. Two QTL-by-treatment interactions were found for growth initiation, whereas several QTL-by-treatment interactions were detected among growth cessation traits. This is the first report of QTL interactions with specific environmental signals in forest trees and will assist in the identification of candidate genes controlling these important adaptive traits in perennial plants. PMID:14668397

  2. Personality Traits and Leptin

    PubMed Central

    Sutin, Angelina R.; Zonderman, Alan B.; Uda, Manuela; Deiana, Barbara; Taub, Dennis D.; Longo, Dan L.; Ferrucci, Luigi; Schlessinger, David; Cucca, Francesco; Terracciano, Antonio

    2015-01-01

    Objective Personality traits related to high Neuroticism and low Conscientiousness are consistently associated with obesity. Hormones implicated in appetite and metabolism, such as leptin, may also be related to personality and may contribute to the association between these traits and obesity. The present research examined the association between leptin and Five Factor Model personality traits. Methods A total of 5,214 participants (58% female; Mean age = 44.42 years, SD = 15.93, range 18 to 94) from the SardiNIA project completed the Revised NEO Personality Inventory, a comprehensive measure of personality traits, and their blood samples were assayed for leptin. Results As expected, lower Conscientiousness was associated with higher circulating levels of leptin (r=?.05, p<.001), even after controlling for body mass index, waist circumference, or inflammatory markers (r=?.05, p<.001). Neuroticism, in contrast, was unrelated to leptin (r=.01, p=.31). Conclusions Individuals who are impulsive and lack discipline (low Conscientiousness) may develop leptin resistance, which could be one factor that contributes to obesity, whereas the relation between a proneness to anxiety and depression (high Neuroticism) and obesity may be mediated through other physiological and/or behavioral pathways. PMID:23697464

  3. Are autistic traits autistic?

    PubMed

    Barbeau, Elise B; Mendrek, Adrianna; Mottron, Laurent

    2009-02-01

    According to the extreme male brain theory of autism (Baron-Cohen, 2002), autistic traits would be extreme manifestations of typical male behaviours. The Auyeung et al. (2009) paper establishes a link between autistic traits and higher fetal testosterone (fT) levels in typically developing children. We argue that the construct behind this relationship needs further investigation. First, the link between fT levels and sexually dimorphic traits, that are for example, associated with empathizing and systemizing, is controversial. Likewise, describing autistic behaviours as being extreme male-like is debatable. The cerebral hemisphere laterality pattern of individuals with autism also seems to differ from the pattern typically observed in males. Moreover, the parallel that should exist, according to the fT theory, between individuals with autism and individuals with congenital adrenal hyperplasia (CAH), because of their high fT levels, is unclear. The theory implying fT levels in autism fails to account for a big part of autism, and the link between fT and normal 'autistic traits' hardly demonstrates the causal link between fT and autism. PMID:18718106

  4. QUANTITATIVE TRAIT LOCI FOR INFECTIOUS BOVINE KERATOCONJUNCTIVITIS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Infectious bovine keratoconjunctivitis, also known as pinkeye, is an economically important disease in cattle. The objective of this study was to detect quantitative trait loci associated with infectious bovine keratoconjunctivitis in offspring from a Brahman x Hereford sire. The sire was mated to H...

  5. Birth Order Positions and Personality Traits.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tharbe, Ida Hartini Ahmad; Harun, Lily Mastura Hj.

    The growing concern for the development of teenagers has brought up issues regarding the role of the family system in shaping the personality traits of children. Alfred Adler (1870-1937), an Austrian psychiatrist who introduced the psychological/therapeutic model, "Individual Psychology," highlighted the importance of birth order positions in…

  6. Rational association of genes with traits using a genome-scale gene network for Arabidopsis thaliana

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Insuk; Ambaru, Bindu; Thakkar, Pranjali; Marcotte, Edward M.; Rhee, Seung Y.

    2010-01-01

    Plants are essential sources of food, fiber and renewable energy. Effective methods for manipulating plant traits have important agricultural and economic consequences. We introduce a rational approach for associating genes with plant traits by combined use of a genome-scale functional network and targeted reverse genetic screening. We present a probabilistic network (AraNet) of functional associations among 19,647 (73%) genes of the reference flowering plant Arabidopsis thaliana. AraNet associations have measured precision greater than literature-based protein interactions (21%) for 55% of genes, and are highly predictive for diverse biological pathways. Using AraNet, we found a 10-fold enrichment in identifying early seedling development genes. By interrogating network neighborhoods, we identify At1g80710 (now Drought sensitive 1; Drs1) and At3g05090 (now Lateral root stimulator 1; Lrs1) as novel regulators of drought sensitivity and lateral root development, respectively. AraNet (http://www.functionalnet.org/aranet/) provides a global resource for plant gene function identification and genetic dissection of plant traits. PMID:20118918

  7. Developing Curriculum Markers for Agricultural Extension Education in South Africa

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Worth, S. H.

    2008-01-01

    Sufficient changes have occurred in both the agricultural and educational sectors of South Africa to warrant a careful scrutiny of the agricultural education offerings in South Africa. Agricultural extension is identified as an important part of the intended transformation of the agricultural sector. Further, agricultural extension is essentially

  8. Transgenic barley: a prospective tool for biotechnology and agriculture.

    PubMed

    Mrzov, Katarna; Holaskov, Edita; z, M Tufan; Jiskrov, Eva; Frbort, Ivo; Galuszka, Petr

    2014-01-01

    Barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) is one of the founder crops of agriculture, and today it is the fourth most important cereal grain worldwide. Barley is used as malt in brewing and distilling industry, as an additive for animal feed, and as a component of various food and bread for human consumption. Progress in stable genetic transformation of barley ensures a potential for improvement of its agronomic performance or use of barley in various biotechnological and industrial applications. Recently, barley grain has been successfully used in molecular farming as a promising bioreactor adapted for production of human therapeutic proteins or animal vaccines. In addition to development of reliable transformation technologies, an extensive amount of various barley genetic resources and tools such as sequence data, microarrays, genetic maps, and databases has been generated. Current status on barley transformation technologies including gene transfer techniques, targets, and progeny stabilization, recent trials for improvement of agricultural traits and performance of barley, especially in relation to increased biotic and abiotic stress tolerance, and potential use of barley grain as a protein production platform have been reviewed in this study. Overall, barley represents a promising tool for both agricultural and biotechnological transgenic approaches, and is considered an ancient but rediscovered crop as a model industrial platform for molecular farming. PMID:24084493

  9. Global agricultural intensification during climate change: a role for genomics.

    PubMed

    Abberton, Michael; Batley, Jacqueline; Bentley, Alison; Bryant, John; Cai, Hongwei; Cockram, James; Costa de Oliveira, Antonio; Cseke, Leland J; Dempewolf, Hannes; De Pace, Ciro; Edwards, David; Gepts, Paul; Greenland, Andy; Hall, Anthony E; Henry, Robert; Hori, Kiyosumi; Howe, Glenn Thomas; Hughes, Stephen; Humphreys, Mike; Lightfoot, David; Marshall, Athole; Mayes, Sean; Nguyen, Henry T; Ogbonnaya, Francis C; Ortiz, Rodomiro; Paterson, Andrew H; Tuberosa, Roberto; Valliyodan, Babu; Varshney, Rajeev K; Yano, Masahiro

    2016-04-01

    Agriculture is now facing the 'perfect storm' of climate change, increasing costs of fertilizer and rising food demands from a larger and wealthier human population. These factors point to a global food deficit unless the efficiency and resilience of crop production is increased. The intensification of agriculture has focused on improving production under optimized conditions, with significant agronomic inputs. Furthermore, the intensive cultivation of a limited number of crops has drastically narrowed the number of plant species humans rely on. A new agricultural paradigm is required, reducing dependence on high inputs and increasing crop diversity, yield stability and environmental resilience. Genomics offers unprecedented opportunities to increase crop yield, quality and stability of production through advanced breeding strategies, enhancing the resilience of major crops to climate variability, and increasing the productivity and range of minor crops to diversify the food supply. Here we review the state of the art of genomic-assisted breeding for the most important staples that feed the world, and how to use and adapt such genomic tools to accelerate development of both major and minor crops with desired traits that enhance adaptation to, or mitigate the effects of climate change. PMID:26360509

  10. The development of halophyte-based agriculture: past and present

    PubMed Central

    Ventura, Yvonne; Eshel, Amram; Pasternak, Dov; Sagi, Moshe

    2015-01-01

    Background Freshwater comprises about a mere 2·5 % of total global water, of which approximately two-thirds is locked into glaciers at the polar ice caps and on mountains. In conjunction with this, in many instances irrigation with freshwater causes an increase in soil salinity due to overirrigation of agricultural land, inefficient water use and poor drainage of unsuitable soils. The problem of salinity was recognized a long time ago and, due to the importance of irrigated agriculture, numerous efforts have been devoted towards improving crop species for better utilization of saline soils and water. Irrigating plants with saline water is a challenge for practitioners and researchers throughout the world. Scope Recruiting wild halophytes with economic potential was suggested several decades ago as a way to reduce the damage caused by salinization of soil and water. A range of cultivation systems for the utilization of halophytes have been developed, for the production of biofuel, purification of saline effluent in constructed wetlands, landscaping, cultivation of gourmet vegetables, and more. This review critically analyses past and present halophyte-based production systems in the context of genetics, physiology, agrotechnical issues and product value. There are still difficulties that need to be overcome, such as direct germination in saline conditions or genotype selection. However, more and more research is being directed not only towards determining salt tolerance of halophytes, but also to the improvement of agricultural traits for long-term progress. PMID:25122652

  11. Systems genetics approaches to understand complex traits

    PubMed Central

    Civelek, Mete; Lusis, Aldons J.

    2014-01-01

    Systems genetics is an approach to understand the flow of biological information that underlies complex traits. It uses a range of experimental and statistical methods to quantitate and integrate intermediate phenotypes, such as transcript, protein or metabolite levels, in populations that vary for traits of interest. Systems genetics studies have provided the first global view of the molecular architecture of complex traits and are useful for the identification of genes, pathways and networks that underlie common human diseases. Given the urgent need to understand how the thousands of loci that have been identified in genome-wide association studies contribute to disease susceptibility, systems genetics is likely to become an increasingly important approach to understanding both biology and disease. PMID:24296534

  12. Quantifying hummingbird preference for floral trait combinations: The role of selection on trait interactions in the evolution of pollination syndromes.

    PubMed

    Fenster, Charles B; Reynolds, Richard J; Williams, Christopher W; Makowsky, Robert; Dudash, Michele R

    2015-05-01

    Darwin recognized the flower's importance for the study of adaptation and emphasized that the flower's functionality reflects the coordinated action of multiple traits. Here we use a multitrait manipulative approach to quantify the potential role of selection acting on floral trait combinations underlying the divergence and maintenance of three related North American species of Silene (Caryophyllaceae). We artificially generated 48 plant phenotypes corresponding to all combinations of key attractive traits differing among the three Silene species (color, height, inflorescence architecture, flower orientation, and corolla-tube width). We quantified main and interaction effects of trait manipulation on hummingbird visitation preference using experimental arrays. The main effects of floral display height and floral orientation strongly influenced hummingbird visitation, with hummingbirds preferring flowers held high above the ground and vertically to the sky. Hummingbirds also prefer traits in a nonadditive manner as multiple two-way and higher order interaction effects were important predictors of hummingbird visitation. Contemporary trait combinations found in hummingbird pollinated S. virginica are mostly preferred. Our study demonstrates the likelihood of pollination syndromes evolving due to selection on trait combinations and highlights the importance of trait interactions in understanding the evolution of complex adaptations. PMID:25765062

  13. Transforming Agricultural Education for a Changing World

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    National Academies Press, 2009

    2009-01-01

    During the next ten years, colleges of agriculture will be challenged to transform their role in higher education and their relationship to the evolving global food and agricultural enterprise. If successful, agriculture colleges will emerge as an important venue for scholars and stakeholders to address some of the most complex and urgent problems…

  14. Agriculture Cooperative Training--"Learning by Doing."

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Williamson, Lewis E., Jr.

    1978-01-01

    A vocational agriculture instructor describes the Agricultural Cooperative Training (ACT) program at Nottoway (Virginia) Senior High School for on-the-job training in agribusiness and agricultural production. Especially important are student and site selection, ACT guidelines, a parent-student-employer-school written agreement, and the student

  15. Ethics and Agricultural Education: Determining Needs.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Foster, Billye

    2000-01-01

    In a three-round Delphi (n=197, 109, 75), secondary teachers (61.5% in agriculture) identified important ethical issues regarding land and water use: conversion of agricultural land for urban development, water rights control, and public land used for agriculture. Nearly all addressed ethical issues in class. (SK)

  16. Transforming Agricultural Education for a Changing World

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    National Academies Press, 2009

    2009-01-01

    During the next ten years, colleges of agriculture will be challenged to transform their role in higher education and their relationship to the evolving global food and agricultural enterprise. If successful, agriculture colleges will emerge as an important venue for scholars and stakeholders to address some of the most complex and urgent problems

  17. Reciprocal insights into adaptation from agricultural and evolutionary studies in tomato

    PubMed Central

    Moyle, Leonie C; Muir, Christopher D

    2010-01-01

    Although traditionally separated by different aims and methodologies, research on agricultural and evolutionary problems shares a common goal of understanding the mechanisms underlying functionally important traits. As such, research in both fields offers potential complementary and reciprocal insights. Here, we discuss adaptive stress responses (specifically to water stress) as an example of potentially fruitful research reciprocity, where agricultural research has clearly produced advances that could benefit evolutionary studies, while evolutionary studies offer approaches and insights underexplored in crop studies. We focus on research on Solanum species that include the domesticated tomato and its wild relatives. Integrated approaches to understanding ecological adaptation are particularly attractive in tomato and its wild relatives: many presumptively adaptive phenotypic differences characterize wild species, and the physiological and mechanistic basis of many relevant traits and environmental responses has already been examined in the context of cultivated tomato and some wild species. We highlight four specific instances where these reciprocal insights can be combined to better address questions that are fundamental both to agriculture and evolution. PMID:25567935

  18. 7 CFR 319.8-17 - Importation for exportation, and importation for transportation and exportation; storage.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 5 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Importation for exportation, and importation for transportation and exportation; storage. 319.8-17 Section 319.8-17 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) ANIMAL AND PLANT HEALTH INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOREIGN QUARANTINE NOTICES Foreign Cotton...

  19. 7 CFR 1540.24 - Determination of the Secretary of Agriculture.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Determination of the Secretary of Agriculture. 1540.24 Section 1540.24 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) FOREIGN AGRICULTURAL SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE INTERNATIONAL AGRICULTURAL TRADE Emergency Relief From Certain Perishable Products Imported From Israel...

  20. 7 CFR 1540.44 - Submission of recommendations by the Secretary of Agriculture.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Submission of recommendations by the Secretary of Agriculture. 1540.44 Section 1540.44 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) FOREIGN AGRICULTURAL SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE INTERNATIONAL AGRICULTURAL TRADE Emergency Relief From Duty-Free Imports of...

  1. Changes in stomatal traits and the covariation with other leaf traits along an altitude transect

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Ruili; Yu, Guirui; He, Nianpeng; Ge, Jianping; Wang, Qiufeng; Zhao, Ning; Xu, Zhiwei

    2014-05-01

    Stomatal traits and their responses to the external environment have been intensively studied for individual plant species. However, little is known about general stomatal patterns along environmental gradients in a broad, interspecific context or about the relationship between stomatal traits and other leaf traits. Here, we measured the stomatal and leaf traits, including stomatal density (SD), stomatal length (SL), specific leaf area (SLA), leaf area (LA), leaf thickness (LT) and nitrogen concentration (mass- and area- base, Nmass and Narea) of 158 plant species along an altitudinal gradient on Changbai Mountain, China. Our results revealed that SD decreased and SL increased significantly with altitude for tree species, although no clear elevational trends were observed in SD and SL across species (including tree, shrub, and herbaceous plants). Plant growth forms (PGFs) were the most important driver of variation in SD and SL, and the contributions of the mean annual temperature, precipitation and soil water content were weak. In addition, a covarying relationship between stomatal and other leaf traits was observed, although this relationship changed with elevation. These findings reflect that the adaptive strategies of plant ecophysiological traits may be complex for alpine environmental gradients, combining the short-term plasticity to environmental changes and long-term convergent evolution.

  2. Interpersonal Problems Associated with Multidimensional Personality Questionnaire Traits in Women during the Transition to Adulthood

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hopwood, Christopher J.; Burt, S. Alexandra; Keel, Pamela K.; Neale, Michael C.; Boker, Steven M.; Klump, Kelly L.

    2013-01-01

    Personality traits are known to be associated with a host of important life outcomes, including interpersonal dysfunction. The interpersonal circumplex offers a comprehensive system for articulating the kinds of interpersonal problems associated with personality traits. In the current study, traits as measured by the Multidimensional Personality…

  3. Interpersonal Problems Associated with Multidimensional Personality Questionnaire Traits in Women during the Transition to Adulthood

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hopwood, Christopher J.; Burt, S. Alexandra; Keel, Pamela K.; Neale, Michael C.; Boker, Steven M.; Klump, Kelly L.

    2013-01-01

    Personality traits are known to be associated with a host of important life outcomes, including interpersonal dysfunction. The interpersonal circumplex offers a comprehensive system for articulating the kinds of interpersonal problems associated with personality traits. In the current study, traits as measured by the Multidimensional Personality

  4. The Coral Trait Database, a curated database of trait information for coral species from the global oceans.

    PubMed

    Madin, Joshua S; Anderson, Kristen D; Andreasen, Magnus Heide; Bridge, Tom C L; Cairns, Stephen D; Connolly, Sean R; Darling, Emily S; Diaz, Marcela; Falster, Daniel S; Franklin, Erik C; Gates, Ruth D; Hoogenboom, Mia O; Huang, Danwei; Keith, Sally A; Kosnik, Matthew A; Kuo, Chao-Yang; Lough, Janice M; Lovelock, Catherine E; Luiz, Osmar; Martinelli, Julieta; Mizerek, Toni; Pandolfi, John M; Pochon, Xavier; Pratchett, Morgan S; Putnam, Hollie M; Roberts, T Edward; Stat, Michael; Wallace, Carden C; Widman, Elizabeth; Baird, Andrew H

    2016-01-01

    Trait-based approaches advance ecological and evolutionary research because traits provide a strong link to an organism's function and fitness. Trait-based research might lead to a deeper understanding of the functions of, and services provided by, ecosystems, thereby improving management, which is vital in the current era of rapid environmental change. Coral reef scientists have long collected trait data for corals; however, these are difficult to access and often under-utilized in addressing large-scale questions. We present the Coral Trait Database initiative that aims to bring together physiological, morphological, ecological, phylogenetic and biogeographic trait information into a single repository. The database houses species- and individual-level data from published field and experimental studies alongside contextual data that provide important framing for analyses. In this data descriptor, we release data for 56 traits for 1547 species, and present a collaborative platform on which other trait data are being actively federated. Our overall goal is for the Coral Trait Database to become an open-source, community-led data clearinghouse that accelerates coral reef research. PMID:27023900

  5. Mapping quantitative trait loci for binary trait in the F2:3 design.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Chengsong; Zhang, Yuan-Ming; Guo, Zhigang

    2008-12-01

    In the analysis of inheritance of quantitative traits with low heritability, an F(2:3) design that genotypes plants in F(2) and phenotypes plants in F(2:3) progeny is often used in plant genetics. Although statistical approaches for mapping quantitative trait loci (QTL) in the F(2:3) design have been well developed, those for binary traits of biological interest and economic importance are seldom addressed. In this study, an attempt was made to map binary trait loci (BTL) in the F(2:3) design. The fundamental idea was: the F(2) plants were genotyped, all phenotypic values of each F(2:3) progeny were measured for binary trait, and these binary trait values and the marker genotype informations were used to detect BTL under the penetrance and liability models. The proposed method was verified by a series of Monte-Carlo simulation experiments. These results showed that maximum likelihood approaches under the penetrance and liability models provide accurate estimates for the effects and the locations of BTL with high statistical power, even under of low heritability. Moreover, the penetrance model is as efficient as the liability model, and the F(2:3) design is more efficient than classical F(2) design, even though only a single progeny is collected from each F(2:3) family. With the maximum likelihood approaches under the penetrance and the liability models developed in this study, we can map binary traits as we can do for quantitative trait in the F(2:3) design. PMID:19147904

  6. Evaluating the fitness of human lysozyme transgenic dairy goats: growth and reproductive traits

    PubMed Central

    Jackson, Kathryn A.; Berg, Jolene M.; Murray, James D.

    2010-01-01

    While there are many reports in the literature describing the attributes of specific applications of transgenic animals for agriculture, there are relatively few studies focusing on the fitness of the transgenic animals themselves. This work was designed to gather information on genetically modified food animals to determine if the presence of a transgene can impact general animal production traits. More specifically, we used a line of transgenic dairy goats expressing human lysozyme in their mammary gland to evaluate the reproductive fitness and growth and development of these animals compared to their non-transgenic counterparts and the impact of consuming a transgenic food product, lysozyme-containing milk. In males, none of the parameters of semen quality, including semen volume and concentration, total sperm per ejaculate, sperm morphology, viability and motility, were significantly different between transgenic bucks and non-transgenic full-sib controls. Likewise, transgenic females of this line did not significantly differ in the reproductive traits of gestation length and litter size compared to their non-transgenic counterparts. To evaluate growth, transgenic and non-transgenic kid goats received colostrum and milk from either transgenic or non-transgenic does from birth until weaning. Neither the presence of the transgene nor the consumption of milk from transgenic animals significantly affected birth weight, weaning weight, overall gain and post-wean gain. These results indicate that the analyzed reproductive and growth traits were not regularly or substantially impacted by the presence or expression of the transgene. The evaluation of these general parameters is an important aspect of defining the safety of applying transgenic technology to animal agriculture. PMID:20135222

  7. Toward knowledge support for analysis and interpretation of complex traits

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    The systematic description of complex traits, from the organism to the cellular level, is important for hypothesis generation about underlying disease mechanisms. We discuss how intelligent algorithms might provide support, leading to faster throughput. PMID:24079802

  8. Identifying the Future Needs for Long-Term USDA Efforts in Agricultural Animal Genomics

    PubMed Central

    Green, R. D.; Qureshi, M. A.; Long, J. A.; Burfening, P.J.; Hamernik, D.L.

    2007-01-01

    Agricultural animal research has been immensely successful over the past century in developing technology and methodologies that have dramatically enhanced production efficiency of the beef, dairy, swine, poultry, sheep, and aquaculture industries. In the past two decades, molecular biology has changed the face of agricultural animal research, primarily in the arena of genomics and the relatively new offshoot areas of functional genomics, proteomics, transcriptomics, metabolomics and metagenomics. Publication of genetic and physical genome maps in the past 15 years has given rise to the possibility of being able finally to understand the molecular nature of the genetic component of phenotypic variation. While quantitative geneticists have been remarkably successful in improving production traits, genomic technology holds potential for being able to lead to more accurate and rapid animal improvement, especially for phenotypic traits that are difficult to measure. Recently, the agricultural research community has been able to capitalize on the infrastructure built by the human genome project by sequencing two of the major livestock genomes (Gallus domesticus and Bos Taurus). The 2005 calendar year is truly unprecedented in the history of agricultural animal research since draft genome sequences were completed for chickens and cattle. In addition, sequencing the swine and equine genome was initiated in early 2006. We now have in place a powerful toolbox for understanding the genetic variation underlying economically important and complex phenotypes. Over the past few years, new challenges have emerged for animal agriculture. Enhancements in production efficiency have not come without some negative side effects on animal well-being and longevity in production environments, including losses in reproductive efficiency, increased stress susceptibility, increased animal waste issues, and increased susceptibility to animal metabolic and infectious diseases. When considered in concert with societal concerns in the areas of natural resource conservation and protection, animal welfare, and food safety, it is clear that publicly supported agricultural research must be focused on enhancing the functionality and well-being of livestock and poultry in environmentally neutral production systems in the future. Realizing the great potential for animal genomics to address these and other issues, a workshop was convened by the U. S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) in Washington, DC in September of 2004. The workshop was entitled Charting the Road Map for Long Term USDA Efforts in Agricultural Animal Genomics. This paper summarizes the proceedings of the workshop and the resulting recommendations. The need for a cohesive, comprehensive long-term plan for all of USDA's research efforts in animal genomics was evident at the workshop, requiring further integration of the efforts of the USDA's Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service (CSREES) and the USDA's Agricultural Research Service (ARS) to achieve the greatest return on investment. PMID:17384737

  9. Programs in Animal Agriculture.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Herring, Don R.; And Others

    1980-01-01

    Five topics relating to programs in animal agriculture are addressed: (1) the future of animal agriculture; (2) preparing teachers in animal agriculture; (3) how animal programs help young people; (4) a nontraditional animal agriculture program; and (5) developing competencies in animal agriculture. (LRA)

  10. Traits of Heracleum sosnowskyi Plants in Monostand on Invaded Area

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    The ability of giant hogweeds to form monodominant communities and even pure monostands in invaded areas has been well documented. Understanding of the mechanisms leading to monostand formation can aid in determining the limitations of existing community ecology models and establishing an effective management plan for invasive species elimination. The aim of this observational study was to investigate traits of Heracleum sosnowskyi plants (demography, canopy structure, morphology and physiology) of the plants in a pure stand in an invaded area useful for understanding potential monostand formation mechanisms. All measurements were performed in one typical Heracleum sosnowskyi monostand located in an abandoned agriculture field located in Syktyvkar city suburb (North-east Russia). This monostand consisted of five main plant growth stages: seed, seedling, juvenile, vegetative adult, and generative adult. Plants of all stages began to grow simultaneously shortly after the snowmelt, at the same time as spring ephemeral plant species grew. The density of generative plants did not change during the vegetation period, but the density of the other plant stages rapidly decreased after the formation of a tall (up to 2–2.5 m) and dense (Leaf area index up to 6.5) canopy. The canopy captured approximately 97% of the light. H. sosnowskyi showed high (several orders of magnitude higher than average taiga zone grasses) photosynthetic water use efficiency (6–7 μM CO2/μM H2O). Formation of H. sosnowskyi monostands occurs primarily in disturbed areas with relatively rich and well-moistened soils. Early commencement of growth, rapid formation of a dense canopy, high efficiency of light and water use during photosynthesis, ability of young plants to survive in low light conditions, rapid recovery of above-ground plant parts after damage, and the high density of the soil seed bank are the most important traits of H. sosnowskyi plants for monostand formation in invaded areas. PMID:26565793

  11. Traits of Heracleum sosnowskyi Plants in Monostand on Invaded Area.

    PubMed

    Dalke, Igor V; Chadin, Ivan F; Zakhozhiy, Ilya G; Malyshev, Ruslan V; Maslova, Svetlana P; Tabalenkova, Galina N; Golovko, Tamara K

    2015-01-01

    The ability of giant hogweeds to form monodominant communities and even pure monostands in invaded areas has been well documented. Understanding of the mechanisms leading to monostand formation can aid in determining the limitations of existing community ecology models and establishing an effective management plan for invasive species elimination. The aim of this observational study was to investigate traits of Heracleum sosnowskyi plants (demography, canopy structure, morphology and physiology) of the plants in a pure stand in an invaded area useful for understanding potential monostand formation mechanisms. All measurements were performed in one typical Heracleum sosnowskyi monostand located in an abandoned agriculture field located in Syktyvkar city suburb (North-east Russia). This monostand consisted of five main plant growth stages: seed, seedling, juvenile, vegetative adult, and generative adult. Plants of all stages began to grow simultaneously shortly after the snowmelt, at the same time as spring ephemeral plant species grew. The density of generative plants did not change during the vegetation period, but the density of the other plant stages rapidly decreased after the formation of a tall (up to 2-2.5 m) and dense (Leaf area index up to 6.5) canopy. The canopy captured approximately 97% of the light. H. sosnowskyi showed high (several orders of magnitude higher than average taiga zone grasses) photosynthetic water use efficiency (6-7 ?M CO2/?M H2O). Formation of H. sosnowskyi monostands occurs primarily in disturbed areas with relatively rich and well-moistened soils. Early commencement of growth, rapid formation of a dense canopy, high efficiency of light and water use during photosynthesis, ability of young plants to survive in low light conditions, rapid recovery of above-ground plant parts after damage, and the high density of the soil seed bank are the most important traits of H. sosnowskyi plants for monostand formation in invaded areas. PMID:26565793

  12. Quantitative trait loci and metabolic pathways

    PubMed Central

    McMullen, M. D.; Byrne, P. F.; Snook, M. E.; Wiseman, B. R.; Lee, E. A.; Widstrom, N. W.; Coe, E. H.

    1998-01-01

    The interpretation of quantitative trait locus (QTL) studies is limited by the lack of information on metabolic pathways leading to most economic traits. Inferences about the roles of the underlying genes with a pathway or the nature of their interaction with other loci are generally not possible. An exception is resistance to the corn earworm Helicoverpa zea (Boddie) in maize (Zea mays L.) because of maysin, a C-glycosyl flavone synthesized in silks via a branch of the well characterized flavonoid pathway. Our results using flavone synthesis as a model QTL system indicate: (i) the importance of regulatory loci as QTLs, (ii) the importance of interconnecting biochemical pathways on product levels, (iii) evidence for channeling of intermediates, allowing independent synthesis of related compounds, (iv) the utility of QTL analysis in clarifying the role of specific genes in a biochemical pathway, and (v) identification of a previously unknown locus on chromosome 9S affecting flavone level. A greater understanding of the genetic basis of maysin synthesis and associated corn earworm resistance should lead to improved breeding strategies. More broadly, the insights gained in relating a defined genetic and biochemical pathway affecting a quantitative trait should enhance interpretation of the biological basis of variation for other quantitative traits. PMID:9482823

  13. Genetics of complex traits in psychiatry

    PubMed Central

    Gelernter, Joel

    2014-01-01

    Virtually all psychiatric traits are genetically complex. This article discusses the genetics of complex traits in psychiatry. The complexity is accounted for by numerous factors, including multiple risk alleles, epistasis, and epigenetic effects, such as methylation. Risk alleles can individually be common or rare, and can include, for example, single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and copy number variants (CNV) that are transmitted or are new mutations, and other kinds of variation. Many different kinds of variation can be important for trait risk, either together in various proportions, or as different factors in different subjects. Until recently, our approaches to complex traits were limited, and consequently only a small number of variants, usually of individually minor effect, were identified. Currently, we have a much richer armamentarium that includes the routine application of genomewide association studies (GWAS) and next-generation high throughput sequencing (NextGen); and the combination of this information with other biologically relevant information, such as expression data. We have also seen the emergence of large meta-analysis and mega-analysis consortia. These developments are extremely important for psychiatric genetics, have moved the field forward substantially, and promise formidable gains in the years to come as they are applied more widely. PMID:25444161

  14. Multi-locus Genotypes Underlying Temperature Sensitivity in a Mutationally Induced Trait

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Jonathan T.; Taylor, Matthew B.; Shen, Amy; Ehrenreich, Ian M.

    2016-01-01

    Determining how genetic variation alters the expression of heritable phenotypes across conditions is important for agriculture, evolution, and medicine. Central to this problem is the concept of genotype-by-environment interaction (or ‘GxE’), which occurs when segregating genetic variation causes individuals to show different phenotypic responses to the environment. While many studies have sought to identify individual loci that contribute to GxE, obtaining a deeper understanding of this phenomenon may require defining how sets of loci collectively alter the relationship between genotype, environment, and phenotype. Here, we identify combinations of alleles at seven loci that control how a mutationally induced colony phenotype is expressed across a range of temperatures (21, 30, and 37°C) in a panel of yeast recombinants. We show that five predominant multi-locus genotypes involving the detected loci result in trait expression with varying degrees of temperature sensitivity. By comparing these genotypes and their patterns of trait expression across temperatures, we demonstrate that the involved alleles contribute to temperature sensitivity in different ways. While alleles of the transcription factor MSS11 specify the potential temperatures at which the trait can occur, alleles at the other loci modify temperature sensitivity within the range established by MSS11 in a genetic background- and/or temperature-dependent manner. Our results not only represent one of the first characterizations of GxE at the resolution of multi-locus genotypes, but also provide an example of the different roles that genetic variants can play in altering trait expression across conditions. PMID:26990313

  15. Quantitative trait locus mapping and functional genomics of an organophosphate resistance trait in the western corn rootworm, Diabrotica virgifera virgifera

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The western corn rootworm (WCR), Diabrotica virgifera virgifera, is an insect pest of corn, and population suppression with chemical insecticides is an important management tool. Traits conferring organophosphate insecticide resistance have increased in frequency among WCR populations, resulting in...

  16. Vocational Agriculture Handbook for Agriculture Cooperative Training.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Texas A and M Univ., College Station. Vocational Instructional Services.

    This handbook was designed to assist school administrators, vocational administrators, vocational agricultural teachers, and area consultants of vocational agriculture in developing, implementing, and improving an agricultural cooperative training program (especially in Texas). The handbook, which presents information in a narrative format,

  17. A database of life-history traits of European amphibians

    PubMed Central

    Moulherat, Sylvain; Calvez, Olivier; Stevens, Virginie M; Clobert, Jean; Schmeller, Dirk S

    2014-01-01

    Abstract In the current context of climate change and landscape fragmentation, efficient conservation strategies require the explicit consideration of life history traits. This is particularly true for amphibians, which are highly threatened worldwide, composed by more than 7400 species, which is constitute one of the most species-rich vertebrate groups. The collection of information on life history traits is difficult due to the ecology of species and remoteness of their habitats. It is therefore not surprising that our knowledge is limited, and missing information on certain life history traits are common for in this species group. We compiled data on amphibian life history traits from literature in an extensive database with morphological and behavioral traits, habitat preferences and movement abilities for 86 European amphibian species (50 Anuran and 36 Urodela species). When it were available, we reported data for males, females, juveniles and tadpoles. Our database may serve as an important starting point for further analyses regarding amphibian conservation. PMID:25425939

  18. Plant functional traits predict green roof ecosystem services.

    PubMed

    Lundholm, Jeremy; Tran, Stephanie; Gebert, Luke

    2015-02-17

    Plants make important contributions to the services provided by engineered ecosystems such as green roofs. Ecologists use plant species traits as generic predictors of geographical distribution, interactions with other species, and ecosystem functioning, but this approach has been little used to optimize engineered ecosystems. Four plant species traits (height, individual leaf area, specific leaf area, and leaf dry matter content) were evaluated as predictors of ecosystem properties and services in a modular green roof system planted with 21 species. Six indicators of ecosystem services, incorporating thermal, hydrological, water quality, and carbon sequestration functions, were predicted by the four plant traits directly or indirectly via their effects on aggregate ecosystem properties, including canopy density and albedo. Species average height and specific leaf area were the most useful traits, predicting several services via effects on canopy density or growth rate. This study demonstrates that easily measured plant traits can be used to select species to optimize green roof performance across multiple key services. PMID:25599106

  19. Brain structure links trait creativity to openness to experience

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Lijie; Kong, Xiangzhen; Yang, Wenjing; Wei, Dongtao; Li, Jingguang; Cheng, Hongsheng; Zhang, Qinglin

    2015-01-01

    Creativity is crucial to the progression of human civilization and has led to important scientific discoveries. Especially, individuals are more likely to have scientific discoveries if they possess certain personality traits of creativity (trait creativity), including imagination, curiosity, challenge and risk-taking. This study used voxel-based morphometry to identify the brain regions underlying individual differences in trait creativity, as measured by the Williams creativity aptitude test, in a large sample (n = 246). We found that creative individuals had higher gray matter volume in the right posterior middle temporal gyrus (pMTG), which might be related to semantic processing during novelty seeking (e.g. novel association, conceptual integration and metaphor understanding). More importantly, although basic personality factors such as openness to experience, extroversion, conscientiousness and agreeableness (as measured by the NEO Personality Inventory) all contributed to trait creativity, only openness to experience mediated the association between the right pMTG volume and trait creativity. Taken together, our results suggest that the basic personality trait of openness might play an important role in shaping an individual’s trait creativity. PMID:24603022

  20. Callous-unemotional traits and adolescents' role in group crime.

    PubMed

    Thornton, Laura C; Frick, Paul J; Shulman, Elizabeth P; Ray, James V; Steinberg, Laurence; Cauffman, Elizabeth

    2015-08-01

    The current study examined the association of callous-unemotional (CU) traits with group offending (i.e., committing a crime with others; gang involvement) and with the role that the offender may play in a group offense (e.g., being the leader). This analysis was conducted in an ethnically and racially diverse sample (N = 1,216) of justice-involved adolescents (ages 13 to 17) from 3 different sites. CU traits were associated with a greater likelihood of the adolescent offending in groups and being in a gang. Importantly, both associations remained significant after controlling for the adolescent's age, level of intelligence, race and ethnicity, and level of impulse control. The association of CU traits with gang membership also remained significant after controlling for the adolescent's history of delinquent behavior. Further, CU traits were associated with several measures of taking a leadership role in group crimes. CU traits were also associated with greater levels of planning in the group offense for which the adolescent was arrested, although this was moderated by the adolescent's race and was not found in Black youth. These results highlight the importance of CU traits for understanding the group process involved in delinquent acts committed by adolescents. They also underscore the importance of enhancing the effectiveness of treatments for these traits in order to reduce juvenile delinquency. PMID:25689410

  1. Genetic variances, heritabilities and maternal effects on body weight, breast meat yield, meat quality traits and the shape of the growth curve in turkey birds

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Turkey is an important agricultural species and is largely used as a meat bird. In 2004, turkey represented 6.5% of the world poultry meat production. The world-wide turkey population has rapidly grown due to increased commercial farming. Due to the high demand for turkey meat from both consumers and industry global turkey stocks increased from 100 million in 1970 to over 276 million in 2004. This rapidly increasing importance of turkeys was a reason to design this study for the estimation of genetic parameters that control body weight, body composition, meat quality traits and parameters that shape the growth curve in turkey birds. Results The average heritability estimate for body weight traits was 0.38, except for early weights that were strongly affected by maternal effects. This study showed that body weight traits, upper asymptote (a growth curve trait), percent breast meat and redness of meat had high heritability whereas heritabilities of breast length, breast width, percent drip loss, ultimate pH, lightness and yellowness of meat were medium to low. We found high positive genetic and phenotypic correlations between body weight, upper asymptote, most breast meat yield traits and percent drip loss but percent drip loss was found strongly negatively correlated with ultimate pH. Percent breast meat, however, showed genetic correlations close to zero with body weight traits and upper asymptote. Conclusion The results of this analysis and the growth curve from the studied population of turkey birds suggest that the turkey birds could be selected for breeding between 60 and 80 days of age in order to improve overall production and the production of desirable cuts of meat. The continuous selection of birds within this age range could promote high growth rates but specific attention to meat quality would be needed to avoid a negative impact on the quality of meat. PMID:21266032

  2. Agricultural landscapes dynamic at the North-West of Russia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guzel, N.

    2012-04-01

    The process of reduction of agrolandscapes has taken place some decades in the North-Western European Russia. During 100 last years the area of agricultural lands have reduced in 1,4 times on the Karelian Isthmus. The most part of it had been abandoned after change of State border after of the Second World War. The processes of overgrowing of the former agricultural lands are studied on the landscapes base. The types of landscapes are distinguished on the based of the morphological relief symptoms, characteristics of the structure rock and the humid regime. Agricultural lands occupy landscapes such as kames, sandy, sandy-loam, clayey plains, sometimes with excess moistening, sandy fluvioglacial plains, loamy morainic plains, mesotrophic and evtrophic peat-bogs. Four stages can be revealed. I - (period to 20 years after termination of agricultural use) - grass-herb meadow with unclosed brush II - (20 - 40) - shrub layer with closed or low-closed canopy and unclosed or low closed small-leaved regrowth III - (40 - 80) - closed small-leaved forest, sometime including the coniferous trees IY - predomination of the coniferous on small-leaved trees Reestablish vegetation successions can be realised by different ways, with different rate, including various trees and ecological groups of species in different landscapes. In the different sites many traits in common are discovered during this processes. The processes taking place in soil of abandoned agricultural lands are expressed more poorly than in vegetation as soil is more "conservative" element of landscape. Now most area occupies former agricultural lands, inhering on III stage and presenting itself small-leaved forest. Over the last decade because of a change in the socio-political situation there has emerged a tendency towards an increase in the area of the cultivated land in the Karelian Isthmus including the secondary development of previously abandoned lands. However, this process is going on spontaneously; there are quite a few cases of the use of woodland valuable in recreational and forestry respects for dacha or country-cottage construction. From fast change the pattern of ownership on ground is necessary urgent inventory of being available ground resources, including with the purposes of creation of new especially protected territories. It is important to emphasise, that to guards should be subject not only sites so-called quot.; untouched quot.; a nature, but also area with different overgrowth succession stages agricultural lands, where biodiversity raises.

  3. Common Ancestry Is a Poor Predictor of Competitive Traits in Freshwater Green Algae

    PubMed Central

    Narwani, Anita; Alexandrou, Markos A.; Herrin, James; Vouaux, Alaina; Zhou, Charles; Oakley, Todd H.; Cardinale, Bradley J.

    2015-01-01

    Phytoplankton species traits have been used to successfully predict the outcome of competition, but these traits are notoriously laborious to measure. If these traits display a phylogenetic signal, phylogenetic distance (PD) can be used as a proxy for trait variation. We provide the first investigation of the degree of phylogenetic signal in traits related to competition in freshwater green phytoplankton. We measured 17 traits related to competition and tested whether they displayed a phylogenetic signal across a molecular phylogeny of 59 species of green algae. We also assessed the fit of five models of trait evolution to trait variation across the phylogeny. There was no significant phylogenetic signal for 13 out of 17 ecological traits. For 7 traits, a non-phylogenetic model provided the best fit. For another 7 traits, a phylogenetic model was selected, but parameter values indicated that trait variation evolved recently, diminishing the importance of common ancestry. This study suggests that traits related to competition in freshwater green algae are not generally well-predicted by patterns of common ancestry. We discuss the mechanisms by which the link between phylogenetic distance and phenotypic differentiation may be broken. PMID:26348482

  4. Entomophagy and space agriculture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Katayama, N.; Ishikawa, Y.; Takaoki, M.; Yamashita, M.; Nakayama, S.; Kiguchi, K.; Kok, R.; Wada, H.; Mitsuhashi, J.; Space Agriculture Task Force, J.

    Supplying food for human occupants remains one of the primary issues in engineering space habitation Evidently for long-term occupation on a distant planet it is necessary to start agriculture on site Historically humans have consumed a variety of animals and it is required to fill our nutritional need when they live in space Among many candidate group and species of animal to breed in space agriculture insects are of great interest since they have a number of advantages over mammals and other vertebrates or invertebrates About 70-75 of animal species is insects and they play an important role in materials recycle loop of terrestrial biosphere at their various niche For space agriculture we propose several insect species such as the silkworm Bombyx mori the drugstore beetle Stegobium paniceum and the termite Macrotermes subhyalinus Among many advantages these insects do not compete with human in terms of food resources but convert inedible biomass or waste into an edible food source for human The silkworm has been domesticated since 5 000 years ago in China Silk moth has lost capability of flying after its domestication history This feature is advantageous in control of their breeding Silkworm larvae eat specifically mulberry leaves and metamorphose in their cocoon Silk fiber obtained from cocoon can be used to manufacture textile Farming system of the drugstore beetle has been well established Both the drugstore beetle and the termite are capable to convert cellulose or other inedible biomass

  5. Causes of male sexual trait divergence in introduced populations of guppies.

    PubMed

    Lindholm, A K; Head, M L; Brooks, R C; Rollins, L A; Ingleby, F C; Zajitschek, S R K

    2014-02-01

    Males from different populations of the same species often differ in their sexually selected traits. Variation in sexually selected traits can be attributed to sexual selection if phenotypic divergence matches the direction of sexual selection gradients among populations. However, phenotypic divergence of sexually selected traits may also be influenced by other factors, such as natural selection and genetic constraints. Here, we document differences in male sexual traits among six introduced Australian populations of guppies and untangle the forces driving divergence in these sexually selected traits. Using an experimental approach, we found that male size, area of orange coloration, number of sperm per ejaculate and linear sexual selection gradients for male traits differed among populations. Within populations, a large mismatch between the direction of selection and male traits suggests that constraints may be important in preventing male traits from evolving in the direction of selection. Among populations, however, variation in sexual selection explained more than half of the differences in trait variation, suggesting that, despite within-population constraints, sexual selection has contributed to population divergence of male traits. Differences in sexual traits were also associated with predation risk and neutral genetic distance. Our study highlights the importance of sexual selection in trait divergence in introduced populations, despite the presence of constraining factors such as predation risk and evolutionary history. PMID:24456226

  6. Causes of male sexual trait divergence in introduced populations of guppies

    PubMed Central

    Lindholm, A K; Head, M L; Brooks, R C; Rollins, L A; Ingleby, F C; Zajitschek, S R K

    2014-01-01

    Males from different populations of the same species often differ in their sexually selected traits. Variation in sexually selected traits can be attributed to sexual selection if phenotypic divergence matches the direction of sexual selection gradients among populations. However, phenotypic divergence of sexually selected traits may also be influenced by other factors, such as natural selection and genetic constraints. Here, we document differences in male sexual traits among six introduced Australian populations of guppies and untangle the forces driving divergence in these sexually selected traits. Using an experimental approach, we found that male size, area of orange coloration, number of sperm per ejaculate and linear sexual selection gradients for male traits differed among populations. Within populations, a large mismatch between the direction of selection and male traits suggests that constraints may be important in preventing male traits from evolving in the direction of selection. Among populations, however, variation in sexual selection explained more than half of the differences in trait variation, suggesting that, despite within-population constraints, sexual selection has contributed to population divergence of male traits. Differences in sexual traits were also associated with predation risk and neutral genetic distance. Our study highlights the importance of sexual selection in trait divergence in introduced populations, despite the presence of constraining factors such as predation risk and evolutionary history. PMID:24456226

  7. IDENTIFICATION OF QUANTITATIVE TRAIT LOCI AFFECTING PARASITE INDICATOR TRAITS IN A DOUBLE BACKCROSS POPULATION OF SHEEP.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The natural genetic variability of the ruminant immune system provides a feasible means to control gastro-intestinal (GI) parasite infection. To initiate explanation of important allelic differences, a genome-wide analysis for quantitative trait loci (QTL) was initiated in a double backcross populat...

  8. LINKING ROOT TRAITS TO SHOOT TRAITS AND LIFE HISTORY IN 25 TEMPERATE FOREST SPECIES

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Despite their important role in plant carbon budgets and carbon cycling, there is little information available on fine root characteristics of woody species. Comparative approaches were used to examine the roots of 25 diverse species collected from mature forests. Nine root traits were examined that...

  9. DETECTION OF QUANTITATIAVE TRAIT LOCI AFFECTING GROWTH AND REPRODUCTIVE TRAITS IN BOS INDICUS BEEF CATTLE (NELLORE)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The objective of this study was to identify quantitative trait loci of economic importance in purebred Bos indicus beef cattle breed (Nellore). Two half-sib families constituted of 187 (family 1) and 189 (family 2) female sisters, daughters from two distinct bulls, where used. Each parent (F0) was ...

  10. Agriculture and climate change

    SciTech Connect

    Abelson, P.H.

    1992-07-03

    How will increases in levels of CO{sub 2} and changes in temperature affect food production A recently issued report analyzes prospects for US agriculture 1990 to 2030. The report, prepared by a distinguished Task Force, first projects the evolution of agriculture assuming increased levels of CO{sub 2} but no climate change. Then it deals with effects of climate change, followed by a discussion of how greenhouse emissions might be diminished by agriculture. Economic and policy matters are also covered. How the climate would respond to more greenhouse gases is uncertain. If temperatures were higher, there would be more evaporation and more precipitation. Where would the rain fall That is a good question. Weather in a particular locality is not determined by global averages. The Dust Bowl of the 1930s could be repeated at its former site or located in another region such as the present Corn Belt. But depending on the realities at a given place, farmers have demonstrated great flexibility in choosing what they may grow. Their flexibility has been increased by the numerous varieties of seeds of major crops that are now available, each having different characteristics such as drought resistance and temperature tolerance. In past, agriculture has contributed about 5% of US greenhouse gases. Two large components have involved emissions of CO{sub 2} from farm machinery and from oxidation of organic matter in soil due to tillage. Use of diesel fuel and more efficient machinery has reduced emissions from that source by 40%. In some areas changed tillage practices are now responsible for returning carbon to the soil. The report identifies an important potential for diminishing net US emissions of CO{sub 2} by growth and utilization of biomass. Large areas are already available that could be devoted to energy crops.

  11. Leaf Trait-Environment Relationships in a Subtropical Broadleaved Forest in South-East China

    PubMed Central

    Krber, Wenzel; Bhnke, Martin; Welk, Erik; Wirth, Christian; Bruelheide, Helge

    2012-01-01

    Although trait analyses have become more important in community ecology, trait-environment correlations have rarely been studied along successional gradients. We asked which environmental variables had the strongest impact on intraspecific and interspecific trait variation in the community and which traits were most responsive to the environment. We established a series of plots in a secondary forest in the Chinese subtropics, stratified by successional stages that were defined by the time elapsed since the last logging activities. On a total of 27 plots all woody plants were recorded and a set of individuals of every species was analysed for leaf traits, resulting in a trait matrix of 26 leaf traits for 122 species. A Fourth Corner Analysis revealed that the mean values of many leaf traits were tightly related to the successional gradient. Most shifts in traits followed the leaf economics spectrum with decreasing specific leaf area and leaf nutrient contents with successional time. Beside succession, few additional environmental variables resulted in significant trait relationships, such as soil moisture and soil C and N content as well as topographical variables. Not all traits were related to the leaf economics spectrum, and thus, to the successional gradient, such as stomata size and density. By comparing different permutation models in the Fourth Corner Analysis, we found that the trait-environment link was based more on the association of species with the environment than of the communities with species traits. The strong species-environment association was brought about by a clear gradient in species composition along the succession series, while communities were not well differentiated in mean trait composition. In contrast, intraspecific trait variation did not show close environmental relationships. The study confirmed the role of environmental trait filtering in subtropical forests, with traits associated with the leaf economics spectrum being the most responsive ones. PMID:22539999

  12. Multi-Scale Associations between Vegetation Cover and Woodland Bird Communities across a Large Agricultural Region

    PubMed Central

    Ikin, Karen; Barton, Philip S.; Stirnemann, Ingrid A.; Stein, John R.; Michael, Damian; Crane, Mason; Okada, Sachiko; Lindenmayer, David B.

    2014-01-01

    Improving biodiversity conservation in fragmented agricultural landscapes has become an important global issue. Vegetation at the patch and landscape-scale is important for species occupancy and diversity, yet few previous studies have explored multi-scale associations between vegetation and community assemblages. Here, we investigated how patch and landscape-scale vegetation cover structure woodland bird communities. We asked: (1) How is the bird community associated with the vegetation structure of woodland patches and the amount of vegetation cover in the surrounding landscape? (2) Do species of conservation concern respond to woodland vegetation structure and surrounding vegetation cover differently to other species in the community? And (3) Can the relationships between the bird community and the woodland vegetation structure and surrounding vegetation cover be explained by the ecological traits of the species comprising the bird community? We studied 103 woodland patches (0.5 - 53.8 ha) over two time periods across a large (6,800 km2) agricultural region in southeastern Australia. We found that both patch vegetation and surrounding woody vegetation cover were important for structuring the bird community, and that these relationships were consistent over time. In particular, the occurrence of mistletoe within the patches and high values of woody vegetation cover within 1,000 ha and 10,000 ha were important, especially for bird species of conservation concern. We found that the majority of these species displayed similar, positive responses to patch and landscape vegetation attributes. We also found that these relationships were related to the foraging and nesting traits of the bird community. Our findings suggest that management strategies to increase both remnant vegetation quality and the cover of surrounding woody vegetation in fragmented agricultural landscapes may lead to improved conservation of bird communities. PMID:24830684

  13. Morphological traits defining species differences in wild relatives of maize are controlled by multiple quantitative trait loci.

    PubMed

    Westerbergh, Anna; Doebley, John

    2002-02-01

    We analyzed the genetic basis of morphological differences between two wild species of teosinte (Zea diploperennis and Z. mays ssp. parviglumis), which are relatives of maize. These two species differ in a number of taxonomically important traits including the structure of the tassel (male inflorescence), which is the focus of this report. To investigate the genetic inheritance of six tassel traits, quantitative trait locus (QTL) mapping with 95 RFLP markers was employed on a population of 425 F2 plants. Each trait was analyzed by interval mapping (IM) and composite interval mapping (CIM) to identify and characterize the QTL controlling the differences in tassel morphology. We detected two to eight QTL for each trait. In total, 30 QTL with IM and 33 QTL with CIM were found for tassel morphology. QTL for several of the traits mapped near each other, suggesting pleiotropy and/or linkage of QTL. The QTL showed small to moderate magnitudes of effect. No QTL of exceptionally large effect were found as seen under domestication and in the case of some other natural species. Thus, the model involving major QTL of large effect seems not to apply to the traits and species analyzed. A mixture of QTL with positive and negative allelic effects was found for most tassel traits and may suggest a history of periodic changes in the direction of selection during the divergence of Z. diploperennis and Z. mays ssp. parviglumis or fixation of QTL alleles by random genetic drift rather than selection. PMID:11926495

  14. Traits and Trade-Offs Are an Important Tier

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nettle, Daniel

    2007-01-01

    Replies to comments by K. M. Sheldon et al on the author's original article on evolution and personality variation. Sheldon et al concurred with the thrust of that article that the way natural selection shapes or gives rise to interindividual variation is a worthy topic for evolutionary psychologists to consider, so at a broad level Sheldon et al

  15. Sickle cell trait.

    PubMed

    Eichner, E Randy

    2007-08-01

    Sickle cell trait can pose a grave risk for some athletes. In the past few years, exertional sickling has killed nine athletes, including five college football players in training. Exercise-physiology research shows how and why sickle red cells can accumulate in the bloodstream during intense exercise bouts. Sickle cells can "logjam" blood vessels and lead to collapse from ischemic rhabdomyolysis. Diverse clinical and metabolic problems from explosive rhabdomyolysis can threaten life. Sickling can begin in 2-3 minutes of any all-out exertion, or during sustained intense exertion--and can reach grave levels very soon thereafter if the athlete struggles on or is urged on by coaches despite warning signs. Heat, dehydration, altitude, and asthma can increase the risk for and worsen sickling. This exertional sickling syndrome, however, is unique and in the field can be distinguished from heat illnesses. Sickling collapse is a medical emergency. Fortunately, screening and precautions can prevent sickling collapse and enable sickle-trait athletes to thrive in their sports. PMID:17923725

  16. Functional traits and root morphology of alpine plants

    PubMed Central

    Pohl, Mandy; Stroude, Raphal; Buttler, Alexandre; Rixen, Christian

    2011-01-01

    Background and Aims Vegetation has long been recognized to protect the soil from erosion. Understanding species differences in root morphology and functional traits is an important step to assess which species and species mixtures may provide erosion control. Furthermore, extending classification of plant functional types towards root traits may be a useful procedure in understanding important root functions. Methods In this study, pioneer data on traits of alpine plant species, i.e. plant height and shoot biomass, root depth, horizontal root spreading, root length, diameter, tensile strength, plant age and root biomass, from a disturbed site in the Swiss Alps are presented. The applicability of three classifications of plant functional types (PFTs), i.e. life form, growth form and root type, was examined for above- and below-ground plant traits. Key Results Plant traits differed considerably among species even of the same life form, e.g. in the case of total root length by more than two orders of magnitude. Within the same root diameter, species differed significantly in tensile strength: some species (Geum reptans and Luzula spicata) had roots more than twice as strong as those of other species. Species of different life forms provided different root functions (e.g. root depth and horizontal root spreading) that may be important for soil physical processes. All classifications of PFTs were helpful to categorize plant traits; however, the PFTs according to root type explained total root length far better than the other PFTs. Conclusions The results of the study illustrate the remarkable differences between root traits of alpine plants, some of which cannot be assessed from simple morphological inspection, e.g. tensile strength. PFT classification based on root traits seems useful to categorize plant traits, even though some patterns are better explained at the individual species level. PMID:21795278

  17. Monitoring the agricultural landscape for insect resistance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Casas, Joseph; Glaser, J. A.; Copenhaver, Ken

    Farmers in 25 countries on six continents are using plant biotechnology to solve difficult crop production challenges and conserve the environment. In fact, 13.3 million farmers, which include 90 percent of the farming in developing countries, choose to plant biotech crops. Over the past decade, farmers increased area planted in genetically modified (GM) crops by more than 10 percent each year, thus increasing their farm income by more than 44 billion US dollars (1996-2007), and achieved economic, environmental and social benefits in crops such as soybeans, canola, corn and cotton. To date, total acres of biotech crops harvested exceed more than 2 billion with a proven 13-year history of safe use. Over the next decade, expanded adoption combined with current research on 57 crops in 63 countries will broaden the advantages of genetically modified foods for growers, consumers and the environment. Genetically modified (GM) crops with the ability to produce toxins lethal to specific insect pests are covering a larger percentage of the agricultural landscape every year. The United States department of Agriculture (USDA) estimated that 63 percent of corn and 65 percent of cotton contained these specific genetic traits in 2009. The toxins could protect billions of dollars of loss from insect damage for crops valued at greater than 165 billion US dollars in 2008. The stable and efficient production of these crops has taken on even more importance in recent years with their use, not only as a food source, but now also a source of fuel. It is in the best interest of the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) to ensure the continued efficacy of toxin producing GM crops as their use reduces pesticides harmful to humans and animals. However, population genetics models have indicated the risk of insect pests developing resistance to these toxins if a high percentage of acreage is grown in these crops. The USEPA is developing methods to monitor the agricultural landscape to ensure resistance is not developing. USEPA is teaming with NASA to perform this monitoring using models and NASA earth observation imagery from airborne and satellite platforms. Using multiple spatial, temporal and spectral resolutions, the project is monitoring the entire Midwestern "Corn Belt". By applying these methods, the project has successfully delineated insect infestations in genetically modified corn fields. Insect resistance development is expected to present itself as infestations thus indicating potential identification of resistance if it develops in genetically modified crops. The USEPA and NASA are currently considering the development of plans to potentially extend this aircraft research to other crops and develop a micro-satellite application.

  18. Agricultural Pesticides: An Instructional Unit for Teachers of Adult Vocational Education in Agriculture.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Harrison, Kenneth M.; And Others

    This unit was developed as a guide for use by Kentucky teachers in planning and conducting young farmer/adult farmer classes in the use of agricultural pesticides. The unit contains seven lessons covering the following topics: understanding the importance of agricultural pesticides; using and handling agricultural pesticides safely; developing a…

  19. Agricultural Pesticides: An Instructional Unit for Teachers of Adult Vocational Education in Agriculture.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Harrison, Kenneth M.; And Others

    This unit was developed as a guide for use by Kentucky teachers in planning and conducting young farmer/adult farmer classes in the use of agricultural pesticides. The unit contains seven lessons covering the following topics: understanding the importance of agricultural pesticides; using and handling agricultural pesticides safely; developing a

  20. FERTILITY TRAIT ECONOMICS AND CORRELATIONS WITH OTHER TRAITS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Correlations of fertility traits (heifer fertility, interval from calving to first insemination, cow nonreturn rate, and calving interval) with yield traits (milk, fat, and protein), longevity, and somatic cell score (SCS) were compared for 11 countries. Correlations were consistent and small but al...

  1. Data and theory point to mainly additive genetic variance for complex traits.

    PubMed

    Hill, William G; Goddard, Michael E; Visscher, Peter M

    2008-02-01

    The relative proportion of additive and non-additive variation for complex traits is important in evolutionary biology, medicine, and agriculture. We address a long-standing controversy and paradox about the contribution of non-additive genetic variation, namely that knowledge about biological pathways and gene networks imply that epistasis is important. Yet empirical data across a range of traits and species imply that most genetic variance is additive. We evaluate the evidence from empirical studies of genetic variance components and find that additive variance typically accounts for over half, and often close to 100%, of the total genetic variance. We present new theoretical results, based upon the distribution of allele frequencies under neutral and other population genetic models, that show why this is the case even if there are non-additive effects at the level of gene action. We conclude that interactions at the level of genes are not likely to generate much interaction at the level of variance. PMID:18454194

  2. The use of GMOs (genetically modified organisms): agricultural biotechnology or agricultural biopolitics?

    PubMed

    Nuti, Marco; Felici, Cristiana; Agnolucci, Monica

    2007-01-01

    Agricultural biotechnologies embrace a large array of conventional and modern technologies, spanning from composting organic by-products of agriculture to innovative improvement of quality traits of about twenty out of the mostly cultivated plants. In EU a rather restrictive legislative framework has been installed for GMOs, requiring a risk assessment disproportionate with respect to conventional agriculture and organic farming products. The latter are far from being proved safe for human and animal health, and for the environment. Biotechnology of GMOs has been overtaken by biopolitics. On one side there are biotechnological challenges to be tackled, on another side there is plenty of ground for biopolitical decisions about GMOs. Perhaps the era of harsh confrontation could be fruitfully replaced by sensible cooperation, in order to get a sustainable agricultural development. PMID:17987558

  3. A trait-based framework for stream algal communities.

    PubMed

    Lange, Katharina; Townsend, Colin Richard; Matthaei, Christoph David

    2016-01-01

    The use of trait-based approaches to detect effects of land use and climate change on terrestrial plant and aquatic phytoplankton communities is increasing, but such a framework is still needed for benthic stream algae. Here we present a conceptual framework of morphological, physiological, behavioural and life-history traits relating to resource acquisition and resistance to disturbance. We tested this approach by assessing the relationships between multiple anthropogenic stressors and algal traits at 43 stream sites. Our "natural experiment" was conducted along gradients of agricultural land-use intensity (0-95% of the catchment in high-producing pasture) and hydrological alteration (0-92% streamflow reduction resulting from water abstraction for irrigation) as well as related physicochemical variables (total nitrogen concentration and deposited fine sediment). Strategic choice of study sites meant that agricultural intensity and hydrological alteration were uncorrelated. We studied the relationships of seven traits (with 23 trait categories) to our environmental predictor variables using general linear models and an information-theoretic model-selection approach. Life form, nitrogen fixation and spore formation were key traits that showed the strongest relationships with environmental stressors. Overall, FI (farming intensity) exerted stronger effects on algal communities than hydrological alteration. The large-bodied, non-attached, filamentous algae that dominated under high farming intensities have limited dispersal abilities but may cope with unfavourable conditions through the formation of spores. Antagonistic interactions between FI and flow reduction were observed for some trait variables, whereas no interactions occurred for nitrogen concentration and fine sediment. Our conceptual framework was well supported by tests of ten specific hypotheses predicting effects of resource supply and disturbance on algal traits. Our study also shows that investigating a fairly comprehensive set of traits can help shed light on the drivers of algal community composition insituations where multiple stressors are operating. Further, to understand non-linear and non-additive effects of such drivers, communities need to be studied along multiple gradients of natural variation or anthropogenic stressors. PMID:26811771

  4. Phenotyping nutritional and antinutritional traits

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Evolution of nutrient-rich food systems to calorie-focused production agriculture has created serious agricultural and human health issues: marginalization of traditional agricultural crops, greater dependence of agricultural inputs, and creation of both energy and micronutrient malnutrition. To dat...

  5. Structural brain MRI trait polygenic score prediction of cognitive abilities

    PubMed Central

    Luciano, Michelle; Marioni, Riccardo E; Hernández, Maria Valdés; Maniega, Susana Munoz; Hamilton, Iona F; Royle, Natalie A.; Scotland, Generation; Chauhan, Ganesh; Bis, Joshua C.; Debette, Stephanie; DeCarli, Charles; Fornage, Myriam; Schmidt, Reinhold; Ikram, M. Arfan; Launer, Lenore J.; Seshadri, Sudha; Bastin, Mark E.; Porteous, David J.; Wardlaw, Joanna; Deary, Ian J

    2016-01-01

    Structural brain magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) traits share part of their genetic variance with cognitive traits. Here, we use genetic association results from large meta-analytic studies of genome-wide association for brain infarcts, white matter hyperintensities, intracranial, hippocampal and total brain volumes to estimate polygenic scores for these traits in three Scottish samples: Generation Scotland: Scottish Family Health Study (GS:SFHS), and the Lothian Birth Cohorts of 1936 (LBC1936) and 1921 (LBC1921). These five brain MRI trait polygenic scores were then used to 1) predict corresponding MRI traits in the LBC1936 (numbers ranged 573 to 630 across traits) and 2) predict cognitive traits in all three cohorts (in 8,115 to 8,250 persons). In the LBC1936, all MRI phenotypic traits were correlated with at least one cognitive measure; and polygenic prediction of MRI traits was observed for intracranial volume. Meta-analysis of the correlations between MRI polygenic scores and cognitive traits revealed a significant negative correlation (maximal r=0.08) between the hippocampal volume polygenic score and measures of global cognitive ability collected in childhood and in old age in the Lothian Birth Cohorts. The lack of association to a related general cognitive measure when including the GS:SFHS points to either type 1 error or the importance of using prediction samples that closely match the demographics of the genome-wide association samples from which prediction is based. Ideally, these analyses should be repeated in larger samples with data on both MRI and cognition, and using MRI GWA results from even larger meta-analysis studies. PMID:26427786

  6. Variability of Root Traits in Spring Wheat Germplasm

    PubMed Central

    Narayanan, Sruthi; Mohan, Amita; Gill, Kulvinder S.; Prasad, P. V. Vara

    2014-01-01

    Root traits influence the amount of water and nutrient absorption, and are important for maintaining crop yield under drought conditions. The objectives of this research were to characterize variability of root traits among spring wheat genotypes and determine whether root traits are related to shoot traits (plant height, tiller number per plant, shoot dry weight, and coleoptile length), regions of origin, and market classes. Plants were grown in 150-cm columns for 61 days in a greenhouse under optimal growth conditions. Rooting depth, root dry weight, root: shoot ratio, and shoot traits were determined for 297 genotypes of the germplasm, Cultivated Wheat Collection (CWC). The remaining root traits such as total root length and surface area were measured for a subset of 30 genotypes selected based on rooting depth. Significant genetic variability was observed for root traits among spring wheat genotypes in CWC germplasm or its subset. Genotypes Sonora and Currawa were ranked high, and genotype Vandal was ranked low for most root traits. A positive relationship (R2≥0.35) was found between root and shoot dry weights within the CWC germplasm and between total root surface area and tiller number; total root surface area and shoot dry weight; and total root length and coleoptile length within the subset. No correlations were found between plant height and most root traits within the CWC germplasm or its subset. Region of origin had significant impact on rooting depth in the CWC germplasm. Wheat genotypes collected from Australia, Mediterranean, and west Asia had greater rooting depth than those from south Asia, Latin America, Mexico, and Canada. Soft wheat had greater rooting depth than hard wheat in the CWC germplasm. The genetic variability identified in this research for root traits can be exploited to improve drought tolerance and/or resource capture in wheat. PMID:24945438

  7. Structural Brain MRI Trait Polygenic Score Prediction of Cognitive Abilities.

    PubMed

    Luciano, Michelle; Marioni, Riccardo E; Valds Hernndez, Maria; Muoz Maniega, Susana; Hamilton, Iona F; Royle, Natalie A; Chauhan, Ganesh; Bis, Joshua C; Debette, Stephanie; DeCarli, Charles; Fornage, Myriam; Schmidt, Reinhold; Ikram, M Arfan; Launer, Lenore J; Seshadri, Sudha; Bastin, Mark E; Porteous, David J; Wardlaw, Joanna; Deary, Ian J

    2015-12-01

    Structural brain magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) traits share part of their genetic variance with cognitive traits. Here, we use genetic association results from large meta-analytic studies of genome-wide association (GWA) for brain infarcts (BI), white matter hyperintensities, intracranial, hippocampal, and total brain volumes to estimate polygenic scores for these traits in three Scottish samples: Generation Scotland: Scottish Family Health Study (GS:SFHS), and the Lothian Birth Cohorts of 1936 (LBC1936) and 1921 (LBC1921). These five brain MRI trait polygenic scores were then used to: (1) predict corresponding MRI traits in the LBC1936 (numbers ranged 573 to 630 across traits), and (2) predict cognitive traits in all three cohorts (in 8,115-8,250 persons). In the LBC1936, all MRI phenotypic traits were correlated with at least one cognitive measure, and polygenic prediction of MRI traits was observed for intracranial volume. Meta-analysis of the correlations between MRI polygenic scores and cognitive traits revealed a significant negative correlation (maximal r = 0.08) between the HV polygenic score and measures of global cognitive ability collected in childhood and in old age in the Lothian Birth Cohorts. The lack of association to a related general cognitive measure when including the GS:SFHS points to either type 1 error or the importance of using prediction samples that closely match the demographics of the GWA samples from which prediction is based. Ideally, these analyses should be repeated in larger samples with data on both MRI and cognition, and using MRI GWA results from even larger meta-analysis studies. PMID:26427786

  8. Variability of root traits in spring wheat germplasm.

    PubMed

    Narayanan, Sruthi; Mohan, Amita; Gill, Kulvinder S; Prasad, P V Vara

    2014-01-01

    Root traits influence the amount of water and nutrient absorption, and are important for maintaining crop yield under drought conditions. The objectives of this research were to characterize variability of root traits among spring wheat genotypes and determine whether root traits are related to shoot traits (plant height, tiller number per plant, shoot dry weight, and coleoptile length), regions of origin, and market classes. Plants were grown in 150-cm columns for 61 days in a greenhouse under optimal growth conditions. Rooting depth, root dry weight, root: shoot ratio, and shoot traits were determined for 297 genotypes of the germplasm, Cultivated Wheat Collection (CWC). The remaining root traits such as total root length and surface area were measured for a subset of 30 genotypes selected based on rooting depth. Significant genetic variability was observed for root traits among spring wheat genotypes in CWC germplasm or its subset. Genotypes Sonora and Currawa were ranked high, and genotype Vandal was ranked low for most root traits. A positive relationship (R2 ? 0.35) was found between root and shoot dry weights within the CWC germplasm and between total root surface area and tiller number; total root surface area and shoot dry weight; and total root length and coleoptile length within the subset. No correlations were found between plant height and most root traits within the CWC germplasm or its subset. Region of origin had significant impact on rooting depth in the CWC germplasm. Wheat genotypes collected from Australia, Mediterranean, and west Asia had greater rooting depth than those from south Asia, Latin America, Mexico, and Canada. Soft wheat had greater rooting depth than hard wheat in the CWC germplasm. The genetic variability identified in this research for root traits can be exploited to improve drought tolerance and/or resource capture in wheat. PMID:24945438

  9. AGRICULTURAL CHEMICAL USAGE DATA

    EPA Science Inventory

    This report, which summarizes the use of agricultural chemicals is issued by the National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) as part of its series on Agricultural Chemical Usage. Other publications in the series present statistics for on-farm agricultural chemical usage for f...

  10. Agricultural Education: Value Adding.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Riesenberg, Lou E.; And Others

    1989-01-01

    This issue develops the theme of "Agricultural Education--Value Adding." The concept value adding has been a staple in the world of agricultural business for describing adding value to a commodity that would profit the producer and the local community. Agricultural education should add value to individuals and society to justify agricultural

  11. Handbook of Agricultural Geophysics

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Geophysical methods continue to show great promise for use in agriculture. The term “agricultural geophysics” denotes a subdiscipline of geophysics that is focused only on agricultural applications. The Handbook of Agricultural Geophysics was compiled to include a comprehensive overview of the geoph...

  12. Vocational Agriculture Computer Handbook.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kentucky State Dept. of Education, Frankfort.

    This document is a catalog of reviews of computer software suitable for use in vocational agriculture programs. The reviews were made by vocational agriculture teachers in Kentucky. The reviews cover software on the following topics: farm management, crop production, livestock production, horticulture, agricultural mechanics, general agriculture,…

  13. 7 CFR 999.100 - Regulation governing imports of walnuts.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... MARKETING SERVICE (Marketing Agreements and Orders; Fruits, Vegetables, Nuts), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE... Division, Consumer and Marketing Service, United States Department of Agriculture. (6) Importation of... Agricultural Marketing Agreement Act of 1937”. (3) Whenever walnuts are offered for inspection, the...

  14. Species identity influences belowground arthropod assemblages via functional traits

    PubMed Central

    Gorman, Courtney E.; Read, Quentin D.; Van Nuland, Michael E.; Bryant, Jessica A. M.; Welch, Jessica N.; Altobelli, Joseph T.; Douglas, Morgan J.; Genung, Mark A.; Haag, Elliot N.; Jones, Devin N.; Long, Hannah E.; Wilburn, Adam D.; Schweitzer, Jennifer A.; Bailey, Joseph K.

    2013-01-01

    Plant species influence belowground communities in a variety of ways, ultimately impacting nutrient cycling. Functional plant traits provide a means whereby species identity can influence belowground community interactions, but little work has examined whether species identity influences belowground community processes when correcting for evolutionary history. Specifically, we hypothesized that closely related species would exhibit (i) more similar leaf and root functional traits than more distantly related species, and (ii) more similar associated soil arthropod communities. We found that after correcting for evolutionary history, tree species identity influenced belowground arthropod communities through plant functional traits. These data suggest that plant species structure may be an important predictor in shaping associated soil arthropod communities and further suggest the importance of better understanding the extended consequences of evolutionary history on ecological processes, as similarity in traits may not always reflect similar ecology.

  15. Feral genetically modified herbicide tolerant oilseed rape from seed import spills: are concerns scientifically justified?

    PubMed

    Devos, Yann; Hails, Rosemary S; Messan, Antoine; Perry, Joe N; Squire, Geoffrey R

    2012-02-01

    One of the concerns surrounding the import (for food and feed uses or processing) of genetically modified herbicide tolerant (GMHT) oilseed rape is that, through seed spillage, the herbicide tolerance (HT) trait will escape into agricultural or semi-natural habitats, causing environmental or economic problems. Based on these concerns, three EU countries have invoked national safeguard clauses to ban the marketing of specific GMHT oilseed rape events on their territory. However, the scientific basis for the environmental and economic concerns posed by feral GMHT oilseed rape resulting from seed import spills is debatable. While oilseed rape has characteristics such as secondary dormancy and small seed size that enable it to persist and be redistributed in the landscape, the presence of ferals is not in itself an environmental or economic problem. Crucially, feral oilseed rape has not become invasive outside cultivated and ruderal habitats, and HT traits are not likely to result in increased invasiveness. Feral GMHT oilseed rape has the potential to introduce HT traits to volunteer weeds in agricultural fields, but would only be amplified if the herbicides to which HT volunteers are tolerant were used routinely in the field. However, this worst-case scenario is most unlikely, as seed import spills are mostly confined to port areas. Economic concerns revolve around the potential for feral GMHT oilseed rape to contribute to GM admixtures in non-GM crops. Since feral plants derived from cultivation (as distinct from import) occur at too low a frequency to affect the coexistence threshold of 0.9% in the EU, it can be concluded that feral GMHT plants resulting from seed import spills will have little relevance as a potential source of pollen or seed for GM admixture. This paper concludes that feral oilseed rape in Europe should not be routinely managed, and certainly not in semi-natural habitats, as the benefits of such action would not outweigh the negative effects of management. PMID:21526422

  16. Attitudes of Colleges of Agriculture Freshmen toward Agriculture.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dyer, James E.; Breja, Lisa M.; Andreasen, Randall J.

    1999-01-01

    College freshmen in agriculture (n=401) agreed that high school agriculture is good preparation for college; 97% who had high school agriculture courses planned on degrees in agriculture. Those who had high school agriculture experience had more positive attitudes of agricultural education and agricultural careers. High school agriculture teachers

  17. Anxiety: States, Traits--Situations?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kendall, Philip C.

    1978-01-01

    Investigated the utility of situational assessments of trait anxiety in predicting state anxiety reactions. Results indicated that the STAI-A-Trait and the S-R GTA Evaluation measures correlated significantly higher with each other than either did with the S-R GTA Physical Danger measure. Both stresses produced significant increases in state

  18. Anxiety: States, Traits--Situations?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kendall, Philip C.

    1978-01-01

    Investigated the utility of situational assessments of trait anxiety in predicting state anxiety reactions. Results indicated that the STAI-A-Trait and the S-R GTA Evaluation measures correlated significantly higher with each other than either did with the S-R GTA Physical Danger measure. Both stresses produced significant increases in state…

  19. Trait Modification in Entomopathogenic Nematodes

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A number of beneficial traits such as virulence, reproductive potential, and environmental tolerance are key factors in determining an organisms ability to produce high levels of efficacy in biological control. Beneficial traits in entomopathogenic nematodes have been enhanced through molecular me...

  20. Trait-Specific Responses of Wild Bee Communities to Landscape Composition, Configuration and Local Factors

    PubMed Central

    Hopfenmller, Sebastian; Steffan-Dewenter, Ingolf; Holzschuh, Andrea

    2014-01-01

    Land-use intensification and loss of semi-natural habitats have induced a severe decline of bee diversity in agricultural landscapes. Semi-natural habitats like calcareous grasslands are among the most important bee habitats in central Europe, but they are threatened by decreasing habitat area and quality, and by homogenization of the surrounding landscape affecting both landscape composition and configuration. In this study we tested the importance of habitat area, quality and connectivity as well as landscape composition and configuration on wild bees in calcareous grasslands. We made detailed trait-specific analyses as bees with different traits might differ in their response to the tested factors. Species richness and abundance of wild bees were surveyed on 23 calcareous grassland patches in Southern Germany with independent gradients in local and landscape factors. Total wild bee richness was positively affected by complex landscape configuration, large habitat area and high habitat quality (i.e. steep slopes). Cuckoo bee richness was positively affected by complex landscape configuration and large habitat area whereas habitat specialists were only affected by the local factors habitat area and habitat quality. Small social generalists were positively influenced by habitat area whereas large social generalists (bumblebees) were positively affected by landscape composition (high percentage of semi-natural habitats). Our results emphasize a strong dependence of habitat specialists on local habitat characteristics, whereas cuckoo bees and bumblebees are more likely affected by the surrounding landscape. We conclude that a combination of large high-quality patches and heterogeneous landscapes maintains high bee species richness and communities with diverse trait composition. Such diverse communities might stabilize pollination services provided to crops and wild plants on local and landscape scales. PMID:25137311

  1. Delay discounting: Trait variable?

    PubMed Central

    Odum, Amy L.

    2012-01-01

    Delay discounting refers to the tendency for outcomes that are remote in time to have less value than more immediate outcomes. Steep discounting of delayed outcomes is associated with a variety of social maladies. The degree of sensitivity to delayed outcomes may be a stable and pervasive individual characteristic. In analyses of archival data, the present study found positive correlations between the degree of delay discounting for one outcome (as measured by the Area Under the Curve), and the degree of discounting for other outcomes. Along with additional evidence reviewed, these data suggest that delay discounting may be considered a personality trait. Recent research in epigenetics, neuroscience, and behavior suggests delay discounting may prove to be a beneficial target for therapeutic attempts to produce global reductions in impulsivity related to delay discounting. PMID:21385637

  2. Exaggerated trait growth in insects.

    PubMed

    Lavine, Laura; Gotoh, Hiroki; Brent, Colin S; Dworkin, Ian; Emlen, Douglas J

    2015-01-01

    Animal structures occasionally attain extreme proportions, eclipsing in size the surrounding body parts. We review insect examples of exaggerated traits, such as the mandibles of stag beetles (Lucanidae), the claspers of praying mantids (Mantidae), the elongated hindlimbs of grasshoppers (Orthoptera: Caelifera), and the giant heads of soldier ants (Formicidae) and termites (Isoptera). Developmentally, disproportionate growth can arise through trait-specific modifications to the activity of at least four pathways: the sex determination pathway, the appendage patterning pathway, the insulin/IGF signaling pathway, and the juvenile hormone/ecdysteroid pathway. Although most exaggerated traits have not been studied mechanistically, it is already apparent that distinct developmental mechanisms underlie the evolution of the different types of exaggerated traits. We suggest this reflects the nature of selection in each instance, revealing an exciting link between mechanism, form, and function. We use this information to make explicit predictions for the types of regulatory pathways likely to underlie each type of exaggerated trait. PMID:25341090

  3. PHYLOGENETIC DIVERSITY OF MEDICALLY IMPORTANT FUSARIA

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Due to the paucity of phenotypic traits, morphological species recognition greatly underestimates the number of clinically important species of the opportunistic filamentous ascomycete Fusarium. To address this problem, species limits are being investigated using multilocus DNA sequence data, using...

  4. Trait similarity patterns within grass and grasshopper communities: multitrophic community assembly at work.

    PubMed

    Van der Plas, F; Anderson, T M; Olff, H

    2012-04-01

    Trait-based community assembly theory suggests that trait variation among co-occurring species is shaped by two main processes: abiotic filtering, important in stressful environments and promoting similarity, and competition, more important in productive environments and promoting dissimilarity. Previous studies have indeed found trait similarity to decline along productivity gradients. However, these studies have always been done on single trophic levels. Here, we investigated how interactions between trophic levels affect trait similarity patterns along environmental gradients. We propose three hypotheses for the main drivers of trait similarity patterns of plants and herbivores along environmental gradients: (1) environmental control of both, (2) bottom-up control of herbivore trait variation, and (3) top-down control of grass trait variation. To test this, we collected data on the community composition and trait variation of grasses (41 species) and grasshoppers (53 species) in 50 plots in a South African savanna. Structural equation models were used to investigate how the range and spacing of within-community functional trait values of both grasses and their insect herbivores (grasshoppers; Acrididae) respond to (1) rainfall and fire frequency gradients and (2) the trait similarity patterns of the other trophic level. The analyses revealed that traits of co-occurring grasses became more similar toward lower rainfall and higher fire frequency (environmental control), while showing little evidence for top-down control. Grasshopper trait range patterns, on the other hand, were mostly directly driven by vegetation structure and grass trait range patterns (bottom-up control), while environmental factors had mostly indirect effects via plant traits. Our study shows the potential to expand trait-based community assembly theory to include trophic interactions. PMID:22690634

  5. Quantitative trait loci for fertility traits in Finnish Ayrshire cattle.

    PubMed

    Schulman, Nina F; Sahana, Goutam; Lund, Mogens S; Viitala, Sirja M; Vilkki, Johanna H

    2008-01-01

    A whole genome scan was carried out to detect quantitative trait loci (QTL) for fertility traits in Finnish Ayrshire cattle. The mapping population consisted of 12 bulls and 493 sons. Estimated breeding values for days open, fertility treatments, maternal calf mortality and paternal non-return rate were used as phenotypic data. In a granddaughter design, 171 markers were typed on all 29 bovine autosomes. Associations between markers and traits were analysed by multiple marker regression. Multi-trait analyses were carried out with a variance component based approach for the chromosomes and trait combinations, which were observed significant in the regression method. Twenty-two chromosome-wise significant QTL were detected. Several of the detected QTL areas were overlapping with milk production QTL previously identified in the same population. Multi-trait QTL analyses were carried out to test if these effects were due to a pleiotropic QTL affecting fertility and milk yield traits or to linked QTL causing the effects. This distinction could only be made with confidence on BTA1 where a QTL affecting milk yield is linked to a pleiotropic QTL affecting days open and fertility treatments. PMID:18298935

  6. Quantitative trait loci for fertility traits in Finnish Ayrshire cattle

    PubMed Central

    Schulman, Nina F; Sahana, Goutam; Lund, Mogens S; Viitala, Sirja M; Vilkki, Johanna H

    2008-01-01

    A whole genome scan was carried out to detect quantitative trait loci (QTL) for fertility traits in Finnish Ayrshire cattle. The mapping population consisted of 12 bulls and 493 sons. Estimated breeding values for days open, fertility treatments, maternal calf mortality and paternal non-return rate were used as phenotypic data. In a granddaughter design, 171 markers were typed on all 29 bovine autosomes. Associations between markers and traits were analysed by multiple marker regression. Multi-trait analyses were carried out with a variance component based approach for the chromosomes and trait combinations, which were observed significant in the regression method. Twenty-two chromosome-wise significant QTL were detected. Several of the detected QTL areas were overlapping with milk production QTL previously identified in the same population. Multi-trait QTL analyses were carried out to test if these effects were due to a pleiotropic QTL affecting fertility and milk yield traits or to linked QTL causing the effects. This distinction could only be made with confidence on BTA1 where a QTL affecting milk yield is linked to a pleiotropic QTL affecting days open and fertility treatments. PMID:18298935

  7. Relative contribution of soil, management and traits to co-variations of multiple ecosystem properties in grasslands.

    PubMed

    Gos, Pierre; Loucougaray, Grégory; Colace, Marie-Pascale; Arnoldi, Cindy; Gaucherand, Stéphanie; Dumazel, Daphné; Girard, Lucie; Delorme, Sarah; Lavorel, Sandra

    2016-04-01

    Ecological intensification promotes the better use of ecosystem functioning for agricultural production and as a provider of additional regulation and cultural services. We investigated the mechanisms underpinning potential ecological intensification of livestock production in the Vercors mountains (France). We quantified the variations in seven ecosystem properties associated with key ecosystem services: above-ground biomass production at first harvest, fodder digestibility, plant species richness, soil organic matter content, soil carbon content, total microbial biomass and soil bacteria:fungi ratio across 39 grassland plots representing varying management types and intensity. Our analyses confirmed joint effects of management, traits and soil abiotic parameters on variations in ecosystem properties, with the combination of management and traits being most influential. The variations explained by traits were consistent with the leaf economics spectrum model and its implications for ecosystem functioning. The observed independence between ecosystem properties relevant to production (forage biomass, digestibility and nutrient turnover) on the one hand and soil stocks (organic matter, carbon and microbial stocks) on the other hand suggests that an intensification of fodder production might be compatible with the preservation of the soil capital. We highlight that appropriate choices regarding various practices, such as the first date of grazing or mowing being dependent on soil moisture, have important consequences on a number of ecosystem properties relevant for ecosystem services and may influence biodiversity patterns. Such avenues for ecological intensification should be considered as part of further landscape- and farm-scale analyses of the relationships between farm functioning and ecosystem services. PMID:26830292

  8. Sequencing Crop Genomes: A Gateway to Improve Tropical Agriculture

    PubMed Central

    Thottathil, Gincy Paily; Jayasekaran, Kandakumar; Othman, Ahmad Sofiman

    2016-01-01

    Agricultural development in the tropics lags behind development in the temperate latitudes due to the lack of advanced technology, and various biotic and abiotic factors. To cope with the increasing demand for food and other plant-based products, improved crop varieties have to be developed. To breed improved varieties, a better understanding of crop genetics is necessary. With the advent of next-generation DNA sequencing technologies, many important crop genomes have been sequenced. Primary importance has been given to food crops, including cereals, tuber crops, vegetables, and fruits. The DNA sequence information is extremely valuable for identifying key genes controlling important agronomic traits and for identifying genetic variability among the cultivars. However, massive DNA re-sequencing and gene expression studies have to be performed to substantially improve our understanding of crop genetics. Application of the knowledge obtained from the genomes, transcriptomes, expression studies, and epigenetic studies would enable the development of improved varieties and may lead to a second green revolution. The applications of next generation DNA sequencing technologies in crop improvement, its limitations, future prospects, and the features of important crop genome projects are reviewed herein.

  9. Relationships between quantitative and reproductive fitness traits in animals

    PubMed Central

    Bnger, Lutz; Lewis, Ronald M; Rothschild, Max F; Blasco, Agustin; Renne, Ulla; Simm, Geoff

    2005-01-01

    The relationships between quantitative and reproductive fitness traits in animals are of general biological importance for the development of population genetic models and our understanding of evolution, and of great direct economical importance in the breeding of farm animals. Two well investigated quantitative traitsbody weight (BW) and litter size (LS)were chosen as the focus of our review. The genetic relationships between them are reviewed in fishes and several mammalian species. We have focused especially on mice where data are most abundant. In mice, many individual genes influencing these traits have been identified, and numerous quantitative trait loci (QTL) located. The extensive data on both unselected and selected mouse populations, with some characterized for more than 100 generations, allow a thorough investigation of the dynamics of this relationship during the process of selection. Although there is a substantial positive genetic correlation between both traits in unselected populations, caused mainly by the high correlation between BW and ovulation rate, that correlation apparently declines during selection and therefore does not restrict a relatively independent development of both traits. The importance of these findings for overall reproductive fitness and its change during selection is discussed. PMID:16048791

  10. Identifying the Climatic Limits to Agricultural Production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Drewry, D. T.; Kleidon, A.; Pavlick, R. P.; Bohn, K.; Reu, B.

    2011-12-01

    Increases in consumption associated with population growth, coupled with projected changes in surface climate over the coming decades, will present a new set of challenges to global agriculture. An increase in demand for agricultural commodities, along with a greater fraction of farmed products being diverted for uses such as energy production, is expected to result in an increase in land conversion to agricultural practice globally. Satisfying these greater demands in a sustainable manner will necessitate a re-evaluation of agricultural practices. Here we present a novel approach to the examination of the climatic limits of global agricultural production. This approach provides insight into the ecophysiological and structural trade-offs that lead to optimal production and the climatically-driven geographic variation in optimal plant species characteristics. The Jena Diversity Model (JeDi) provides a basis for examining the impacts of plant traits on survival, productivity and resource use efficiencies. JeDi has been successfully used to demonstrate the ability of a generic plant model to capture observed global patterns in plant species richness through the application of climatic constraints. The core of JeDi is a plant model that incorporates knowledge of vegetation ecophysiological and hydrological functioning. Coupled to a novel carbon allocation scheme, each plant species survives and grows as a function of the interactions between climate and the species-specific combination of ecophysiological and structural traits. Here we present extensions to the JeDi framework that allow for an examination of the combined influences of harvest practices and plant traits on optimal production in the context of human appropriation goals such as total seed harvest and above-ground biomass production. Experiments were designed to determine the geographical variation in plant species characteristics that result in the maximization of these goals, the impact of harvest practice on maximum production values, and the extent to which alternative harvest practices result in a broadening of the set of species that are most productive. These findings have implications for defining sustainable agricultural practices and for understanding the ecophysiological limits to agriculture and the associated impacts on ecosystem functioning.

  11. On-farm habitat restoration counters biotic homogenization in intensively managed agriculture.

    PubMed

    Ponisio, Lauren C; M'Gonigle, Leithen K; Kremen, Claire

    2016-02-01

    To slow the rate of global species loss, it is imperative to understand how to restore and maintain native biodiversity in agricultural landscapes. Currently, agriculture is associated with lower spatial heterogeneity and turnover in community composition (β-diversity). While some techniques are known to enhance α-diversity, it is unclear whether habitat restoration can re-establish β-diversity. Using a long-term pollinator dataset, comprising ∼9,800 specimens collected from the intensively managed agricultural landscape of the Central Valley of California, we show that on-farm habitat restoration in the form of native plant 'hedgerows', when replicated across a landscape, can boost β-diversity by approximately 14% relative to unrestored field margins, to levels similar to some natural communities. Hedgerows restore β-diversity by promoting the assembly of phenotypically diverse communities. Intensively managed agriculture imposes a strong ecological filter that negatively affects several important dimensions of community trait diversity, distribution, and uniqueness. However, by helping to restore phenotypically diverse pollinator communities, small-scale restorations such as hedgerows provide a valuable tool for conserving biodiversity and promoting ecosystem services. PMID:26542192

  12. Polytraits: A database on biological traits of marine polychaetes

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Abstract The study of ecosystem functioning – the role which organisms play in an ecosystem – is becoming increasingly important in marine ecological research. The functional structure of a community can be represented by a set of functional traits assigned to behavioural, reproductive and morphological characteristics. The collection of these traits from the literature is however a laborious and time-consuming process, and gaps of knowledge and restricted availability of literature are a common problem. Trait data are not yet readily being shared by research communities, and even if they are, a lack of trait data repositories and standards for data formats leads to the publication of trait information in forms which cannot be processed by computers. This paper describes Polytraits (http://polytraits.lifewatchgreece.eu), a database on biological traits of marine polychaetes (bristle worms, Polychaeta: Annelida). At present, the database contains almost 20,000 records on morphological, behavioural and reproductive characteristics of more than 1,000 marine polychaete species, all referenced by literature sources. All data can be freely accessed through the project website in different ways and formats, both human-readable and machine-readable, and have been submitted to the Encyclopedia of Life for archival and integration with trait information from other sources. PMID:24855436

  13. Polytraits: A database on biological traits of marine polychaetes.

    PubMed

    Faulwetter, Sarah; Markantonatou, Vasiliki; Pavloudi, Christina; Papageorgiou, Nafsika; Keklikoglou, Kleoniki; Chatzinikolaou, Eva; Pafilis, Evangelos; Chatzigeorgiou, Georgios; Vasileiadou, Katerina; Dailianis, Thanos; Fanini, Lucia; Koulouri, Panayota; Arvanitidis, Christos

    2014-01-01

    The study of ecosystem functioning - the role which organisms play in an ecosystem - is becoming increasingly important in marine ecological research. The functional structure of a community can be represented by a set of functional traits assigned to behavioural, reproductive and morphological characteristics. The collection of these traits from the literature is however a laborious and time-consuming process, and gaps of knowledge and restricted availability of literature are a common problem. Trait data are not yet readily being shared by research communities, and even if they are, a lack of trait data repositories and standards for data formats leads to the publication of trait information in forms which cannot be processed by computers. This paper describes Polytraits (http://polytraits.lifewatchgreece.eu), a database on biological traits of marine polychaetes (bristle worms, Polychaeta: Annelida). At present, the database contains almost 20,000 records on morphological, behavioural and reproductive characteristics of more than 1,000 marine polychaete species, all referenced by literature sources. All data can be freely accessed through the project website in different ways and formats, both human-readable and machine-readable, and have been submitted to the Encyclopedia of Life for archival and integration with trait information from other sources. PMID:24855436

  14. Genetic analysis of root morphological traits in wheat.

    PubMed

    Petrarulo, Maria; Marone, Daniela; Ferragonio, Pina; Cattivelli, Luigi; Rubiales, Diego; De Vita, Pasquale; Mastrangelo, Anna Maria

    2015-06-01

    Traits related to root architecture are of great importance for yield performance of crop species, although they remain poorly understood. The present study is aimed at identifying the genomic regions involved in the control of root morphological traits in durum wheat (Triticum durum Desf.). A set of 123 recombinant inbred lines derived from the durum wheat cross of cvs. 'Creso' × 'Pedroso' were grown hydroponically to two growth stages, and were phenotypically evaluated for a number of root traits. In addition, meta-(M)QTL analysis was performed that considered the results of other root traits studies in wheat, to compare with the 'Creso' × 'Pedroso' cross and to increase the QTL detection power. Eight quantitative trait loci (QTL) for traits related to root morphology were identified on chromosomes 1A, 1B, 2A, 3A, 6A and 6B in the 'Creso' × 'Pedroso' segregating population. Twenty-two MQTL that comprised from two to six individual QTL that had widely varying confidence intervals were found on 14 chromosomes. The data from the present study provide a detailed analysis of the genetic basis of morphological root traits in wheat. This study of the 'Creso' × 'Pedroso' durum-wheat population has revealed some QTL that had not been previously identified. PMID:25416422

  15. Model Adequacy and the Macroevolution of Angiosperm Functional Traits.

    PubMed

    Pennell, Matthew W; FitzJohn, Richard G; Cornwell, William K; Harmon, Luke J

    2015-08-01

    Making meaningful inferences from phylogenetic comparative data requires a meaningful model of trait evolution. It is thus important to determine whether the model is appropriate for the data and the question being addressed. One way to assess this is to ask whether the model provides a good statistical explanation for the variation in the data. To date, researchers have focused primarily on the explanatory power of a model relative to alternative models. Methods have been developed to assess the adequacy, or absolute explanatory power, of phylogenetic trait models, but these have been restricted to specific models or questions. Here we present a general statistical framework for assessing the adequacy of phylogenetic trait models. We use our approach to evaluate the statistical performance of commonly used trait models on 337 comparative data sets covering three key angiosperm functional traits. In general, the models we tested often provided poor statistical explanations for the evolution of these traits. This was true for many different groups and at many different scales. Whether such statistical inadequacy will qualitatively alter inferences drawn from comparative data sets will depend on the context. Regardless, assessing model adequacy can provide interesting biological insights-how and why a model fails to describe variation in a data set give us clues about what evolutionary processes may have driven trait evolution across time. PMID:26655160

  16. Agricultural Chartbook 1988. Agriculture Handbook No. 673.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Department of Agriculture, Washington, DC.

    These charts present an overview of the current economic health of American agriculture. The charts move from the national and international arenas to farm economic health measures and crop and livestock trends. A small amount of descriptive narrative accompanies most of the charts. Charts depicting the economic picture of U.S. agriculture include…

  17. 1986 Agricultural Chartbook. Agriculture Handbook No. 663.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Department of Agriculture, Washington, DC.

    This book contains 310 charts, tables, and graphs containing statistical information about agriculture-related commodities and services, primarily in the United States, in 1986. The book is organized in seven sections that cover the following topics: (1) the farm (farm income, farm population, farm workers, food and fiber system, agriculture and…

  18. Agricultural Aircraft for Site-Specific Agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agricultural aircraft provide a convenient platform to aid in precision agriculture, in which pesticide, fertilizer or other field inputs are applied only where they are needed. This saves on chemical and farm resources, and reduces environmental loading. Remote sensing is used to spot areas of the ...

  19. 1986 Agricultural Chartbook. Agriculture Handbook No. 663.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Department of Agriculture, Washington, DC.

    This book contains 310 charts, tables, and graphs containing statistical information about agriculture-related commodities and services, primarily in the United States, in 1986. The book is organized in seven sections that cover the following topics: (1) the farm (farm income, farm population, farm workers, food and fiber system, agriculture and

  20. Quantitative Trait Loci for Morphological Traits and their Association with Functional Genes in Raphanus sativus

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Xiaona; Choi, Su Ryun; Dhandapani, Vignesh; Rameneni, Jana Jeevan; Li, Xiaonan; Pang, Wenxing; Lee, Ji-Young; Lim, Yong Pyo

    2016-01-01

    Identification of quantitative trait loci (QTLs) governing morphologically important traits enables to comprehend their potential genetic mechanisms in the genetic breeding program. In this study, we used 210 F2 populations derived from a cross between two radish inbred lines (Raphanus sativus) “835” and “B2,” including 258 SSR markers were used to detect QTLs for 11 morphological traits that related to whole plant, leaf, and root yield in 3 years of replicated field test. Total 55 QTLs were detected which were distributed on each linkage group of the Raphanus genome. Individual QTLs accounted for 2.69–12.6 of the LOD value, and 0.82–16.25% of phenotypic variation. Several genomic regions have multiple traits that clustered together, suggested the existence of pleiotropy linkage. Synteny analysis of the QTL regions with A. thaliana genome selected orthologous genes in radish. InDels and SNPs in the parental lines were detected in those regions by Illumina genome sequence. Five identified candidate gene-based markers were validated by co-mapping with underlying QTLs affecting different traits. Semi-quantitative reverse transcriptase PCR analysis showed the different expression levels of these five genes in parental lines. In addition, comparative QTL analysis with B. rapa revealed six common QTL regions and four key major evolutionarily conserved crucifer blocks (J, U, R, and W) harboring QTL for morphological traits. The QTL positions identified in this study will provide a valuable resource for identifying more functional genes when whole radish genome sequence is released. Candidate genes identified in this study that co-localized in QTL regions are expected to facilitate in radish breeding programs. PMID:26973691

  1. Consumer trait variation influences tritrophic interactions in salt marsh communities

    PubMed Central

    Hughes, Anne Randall; Hanley, Torrance C; Orozco, Nohelia P; Zerebecki, Robyn A

    2015-01-01

    The importance of intraspecific variation has emerged as a key question in community ecology, helping to bridge the gap between ecology and evolution. Although much of this work has focused on plant species, recent syntheses have highlighted the prevalence and potential importance of morphological, behavioral, and life history variation within animals for ecological and evolutionary processes. Many small-bodied consumers live on the plant that they consume, often resulting in host plant-associated trait variation within and across consumer species. Given the central position of consumer species within tritrophic food webs, such consumer trait variation may play a particularly important role in mediating trophic dynamics, including trophic cascades. In this study, we used a series of field surveys and laboratory experiments to document intraspecific trait variation in a key consumer species, the marsh periwinkle Littoraria irrorata, based on its host plant species (Spartina alterniflora or Juncus roemerianus) in a mixed species assemblage. We then conducted a 12-week mesocosm experiment to examine the effects of Littoraria trait variation on plant community structure and dynamics in a tritrophic salt marsh food web. Littoraria from different host plant species varied across a suite of morphological and behavioral traits. These consumer trait differences interacted with plant community composition and predator presence to affect overall plant stem height, as well as differentially alter the density and biomass of the two key plant species in this system. Whether due to genetic differences or phenotypic plasticity, trait differences between consumer types had significant ecological consequences for the tritrophic marsh food web over seasonal time scales. By altering the cascading effects of the top predator on plant community structure and dynamics, consumer differences may generate a feedback over longer time scales, which in turn influences the degree of trait divergence in subsequent consumer populations. PMID:26257878

  2. Consumer trait variation influences tritrophic interactions in salt marsh communities.

    PubMed

    Hughes, Anne Randall; Hanley, Torrance C; Orozco, Nohelia P; Zerebecki, Robyn A

    2015-07-01

    The importance of intraspecific variation has emerged as a key question in community ecology, helping to bridge the gap between ecology and evolution. Although much of this work has focused on plant species, recent syntheses have highlighted the prevalence and potential importance of morphological, behavioral, and life history variation within animals for ecological and evolutionary processes. Many small-bodied consumers live on the plant that they consume, often resulting in host plant-associated trait variation within and across consumer species. Given the central position of consumer species within tritrophic food webs, such consumer trait variation may play a particularly important role in mediating trophic dynamics, including trophic cascades. In this study, we used a series of field surveys and laboratory experiments to document intraspecific trait variation in a key consumer species, the marsh periwinkle Littoraria irrorata, based on its host plant species (Spartina alterniflora or Juncus roemerianus) in a mixed species assemblage. We then conducted a 12-week mesocosm experiment to examine the effects of Littoraria trait variation on plant community structure and dynamics in a tritrophic salt marsh food web. Littoraria from different host plant species varied across a suite of morphological and behavioral traits. These consumer trait differences interacted with plant community composition and predator presence to affect overall plant stem height, as well as differentially alter the density and biomass of the two key plant species in this system. Whether due to genetic differences or phenotypic plasticity, trait differences between consumer types had significant ecological consequences for the tritrophic marsh food web over seasonal time scales. By altering the cascading effects of the top predator on plant community structure and dynamics, consumer differences may generate a feedback over longer time scales, which in turn influences the degree of trait divergence in subsequent consumer populations. PMID:26257878

  3. Maine Agricultural Foods. Project SEED.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Beaulieu, Peter; Ossenfort, Pat

    This paper describes an activity-based program that teaches students in grades 4-12 about the importance of Maine agriculture in their lives. Specifically, the goal is to increase student awareness of how the foods they eat are planted, harvested, and processed. The emphasis is on crops grown in Maine such as potatoes, broccoli, peas, blueberries,…

  4. AGRICULTURAL EXCHANGE RATE DATA SHEET

    EPA Science Inventory

    The ERS data set contains annual and monthly data for exchange rates important to U.S. agriculture. It includes both nominal and real exchange rates for 80 countries (plus the European Union) as well as real trade-weighted exchange rate indexes for many commodities and aggregatio...

  5. Commonness, rarity, and intraspecific variation in traits and performance in tropical tree seedlings.

    PubMed

    Umaa, Mara Natalia; Zhang, Caicai; Cao, Min; Lin, Luxiang; Swenson, Nathan G

    2015-12-01

    One of the few rules in ecology is that communities are composed of many rare and few common species. Trait-based investigations of abundance distributions have generally focused on species-mean trait values with mixed success. Here, using large tropical tree seedling datasets in China and Puerto Rico, we take an alternative approach that considers the magnitude of intraspecific variation in traits and growth as it relates to species abundance. We find that common species are less variable in their traits and growth. Common species also occupy core positions within community trait space indicating that they are finely tuned for the available conditions. Rare species are functionally peripheral and are likely transients struggling for success in the given environment. The work highlights the importance of considering intraspecific variation in trait-based ecology and demonstrates asymmetry in the magnitude of intraspecific variation among species is critical for understanding of how traits are related to abundance. PMID:26415689

  6. Predator-driven trait diversification in a dragonfly genus: covariation in behavioral and morphological antipredator defense.

    PubMed

    Mikolajewski, Dirk J; De Block, Marjan; Rolff, Jens; Johansson, Frank; Beckerman, Andrew P; Stoks, Robby

    2010-11-01

    Proof for predation as an agent shaping evolutionary trait diversification is accumulating, however, our understanding how multiple antipredator traits covary due to phenotypic differentiation is still scarce. Species of the dragonfly genus Leucorrhinia underwent shifts from lakes with fish as top predators to fishless lakes with large dragonfly predators. This move to fishless lakes was accompanied by a partial loss and reduction of larval spines. Here, we show that Leucorrhinia also reduced burst swimming speed and its associated energy fuelling machinery, arginine kinase activity, when invading fishless lakes. This results in patterns of positive phylogenetic trait covariation between behavioral and morphological antipredator defense (trait cospecialization) and between behavioral antipredator defense and physiological machinery (trait codependence). Across species patterns of trait covariation between spine status, burst swimming speed and arginine kinase activity also matched findings within the phenotypically plastic L. dubia. Our results highlight the importance of predation as a factor affecting patterns of multiple trait covariation during phenotypic diversification. PMID:20624175

  7. QTLs for Seed Vigor-Related Traits Identified in Maize Seeds Germinated under Artificial Aging Conditions

    PubMed Central

    Han, Zanping; Ku, Lixia; Zhang, Zhenzhen; Zhang, Jun; Guo, ShuLei; Liu, Haiying; Zhao, Ruifang; Ren, Zhenzhen; Zhang, Liangkun; Su, Huihui; Dong, Lei; Chen, Yanhui

    2014-01-01

    High seed vigor is important for agricultural production due to the associated potential for increased growth and productivity. However, a better understanding of the underlying molecular mechanisms is required because the genetic basis for seed vigor remains unknown. We used single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers to map quantitative trait loci (QTLs) for four seed vigor traits in two connected recombinant inbred line (RIL) maize populations under four treatment conditions during seed germination. Sixty-five QTLs distributed between the two populations were identified and a meta-analysis was used to integrate genetic maps. Sixty-one initially identified QTLs were integrated into 18 meta-QTLs (mQTLs). Initial QTLs with contribution to phenotypic variation values of R2>10% were integrated into mQTLs. Twenty-three candidate genes for association with seed vigor traits coincided with 13 mQTLs. The candidate genes had functions in the glycolytic pathway and in protein metabolism. QTLs with major effects (R2>10%) were identified under at least one treatment condition for mQTL2, mQTL3-2, and mQTL3-4. Candidate genes included a calcium-dependent protein kinase gene (302810918) involved in signal transduction that mapped in the mQTL3-2 interval associated with germination energy (GE) and germination percentage (GP), and an hsp20/alpha crystallin family protein gene (At5g51440) that mapped in the mQTL3-4 interval associated with GE and GP. Two initial QTLs with a major effect under at least two treatment conditions were identified for mQTL5-2. A cucumisin-like Ser protease gene (At5g67360) mapped in the mQTL5-2 interval associated with GP. The chromosome regions for mQTL2, mQTL3-2, mQTL3-4, and mQTL5-2 may be hot spots for QTLs related to seed vigor traits. The mQTLs and candidate genes identified in this study provide valuable information for the identification of additional quantitative trait genes. PMID:24651614

  8. A database of lotic invertebrate traits for North America

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Vieira, Nicole K.M.; Poff, N. LeRoy; Carlisle, Daren M.; Moulton, Stephen R., II; Koski, Marci L.; Kondratieff, Boris C.

    2006-01-01

    The assessment and study of stream communities may be enhanced if functional characteristics such as life-history, habitat preference, and reproductive strategy were more widely available for specific taxa. Species traits can be used to develop these functional indicators because many traits directly link functional roles of organisms with controlling environmental factors (for example, flow, substratum, temperature). In addition, some functional traits may not be constrained by taxonomy and are thus applicable at multiple spatial scales. Unfortunately, a comprehensive summary of traits for North American invertebrate taxa does not exist. Consequently, the U.S. Geological Survey's National Water-Quality Assessment Program in cooperation with Colorado State University compiled a database of traits for North American invertebrates. A total of 14,127 records for over 2,200 species, 1,165 genera, and 249 families have been entered into the database from 967 publications, texts and reports. Quality-assurance procedures indicated error rates of less than 3 percent in the data entry process. Species trait information was most complete for insect taxa. Traits describing resource acquisition and habitat preferences were most frequently reported, whereas those describing physiological tolerances and reproductive biology were the least frequently reported in the literature. The database is not exhaustive of the literature for North American invertebrates and is biased towards aquatic insects, but it represents a first attempt to compile traits in a web-accessible database. This report describes the database and discusses important decisions necessary for identifying ecologically relevant, environmentally sensitive, non-redundant, and statistically tractable traits for use in bioassessment programs.

  9. Effect of Habitat Conditions and Plant Traits on Leaf Damage in the Carduoideae Subfamily

    PubMed Central

    Mnzbergov, Zuzana; Skuhrovec, Ji?

    2013-01-01

    Plant traits are the key factors that determine herbivore foraging selection. The traits serving as defense traits against herbivores represent a wide range of traits, such as chemical, physiological, morphological and life-history traits. While many studies considered plant defense traits at the within-species scale, much less is known from comparisons of a wide range of closely related species. The aim of this study was to identify factors responsible for the intensity of leaf damage in the Carduoideae subfamily of Asteraceae, which hosts many invasive species and thus is potential candidate plant species that could be controlled by biological control. Specifically, we wanted to see the relative importance of habitat characteristics, plant size and plants traits in determining the degree of folivory. The study identified several defense traits able to explain differences in herbivory between species after accounting for differences in the habitats in which the species occur and the plant size. Specifically, the most important traits were traits related to the quality of the leaf tissue expressed as the content of phosphorus, water and specific leaf area, which suggests that the leaf quality had a more important effect on the degree of herbivory than the presence of specific defense mechanisms such as spines and hair. Leaf quality is thus a candidate factor that drives herbivore choice when selecting which plant to feed on and should be considered when assessing the danger that a herbivore will switch hosts when introduced to a new range. PMID:23717643

  10. 7 CFR 57.925 - Inspection of imported eggs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 3 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Inspection of imported eggs. 57.925 Section 57.925 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (Standards... samples shall not be taken of any products offered for importation under § 57.960, unless there is...

  11. Kernel-based whole-genome prediction of complex traits: a review

    PubMed Central

    Morota, Gota; Gianola, Daniel

    2014-01-01

    Prediction of genetic values has been a focus of applied quantitative genetics since the beginning of the 20th century, with renewed interest following the advent of the era of whole genome-enabled prediction. Opportunities offered by the emergence of high-dimensional genomic data fueled by post-Sanger sequencing technologies, especially molecular markers, have driven researchers to extend Ronald Fisher and Sewall Wright's models to confront new challenges. In particular, kernel methods are gaining consideration as a regression method of choice for genome-enabled prediction. Complex traits are presumably influenced by many genomic regions working in concert with others (clearly so when considering pathways), thus generating interactions. Motivated by this view, a growing number of statistical approaches based on kernels attempt to capture non-additive effects, either parametrically or non-parametrically. This review centers on whole-genome regression using kernel methods applied to a wide range of quantitative traits of agricultural importance in animals and plants. We discuss various kernel-based approaches tailored to capturing total genetic variation, with the aim of arriving at an enhanced predictive performance in the light of available genome annotation information. Connections between prediction machines born in animal breeding, statistics, and machine learning are revisited, and their empirical prediction performance is discussed. Overall, while some encouraging results have been obtained with non-parametric kernels, recovering non-additive genetic variation in a validation dataset remains a challenge in quantitative genetics. PMID:25360145

  12. Insects Represent a Link between Food Animal Farms and the Urban Environment for Antibiotic Resistance Traits

    PubMed Central

    Ghosh, Anuradha

    2014-01-01

    Antibiotic-resistant bacterial infections result in higher patient mortality rates, prolonged hospitalizations, and increased health care costs. Extensive use of antibiotics as growth promoters in the animal industry represents great pressure for evolution and selection of antibiotic-resistant bacteria on farms. Despite growing evidence showing that antibiotic use and bacterial resistance in food animals correlate with resistance in human pathogens, the proof for direct transmission of antibiotic resistance is difficult to provide. In this review, we make a case that insects commonly associated with food animals likely represent a direct and important link between animal farms and urban communities for antibiotic resistance traits. Houseflies and cockroaches have been shown to carry multidrug-resistant clonal lineages of bacteria identical to those found in animal manure. Furthermore, several studies have demonstrated proliferation of bacteria and horizontal transfer of resistance genes in the insect digestive tract as well as transmission of resistant bacteria by insects to new substrates. We propose that insect management should be an integral part of pre- and postharvest food safety strategies to minimize spread of zoonotic pathogens and antibiotic resistance traits from animal farms. Furthermore, the insect link between the agricultural and urban environment presents an additional argument for adopting prudent use of antibiotics in the food animal industry. PMID:24705326

  13. A Study of Agricultural Job Tasks and Implications for Curriculum Development in Agriculture and Agriculture Related Occupations.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hawaii State Dept. of Education, Honolulu. Office of Instructional Services.

    The study, based on a survey of agricultural industry in Hawaii, was conducted to obtain current job task information to be used as the basis for curriculum improvement in agricultural technology and ornamental horticulture. It determines the kinds and frequency of job skills and the importance of the accompanying knowledge required. A checklist

  14. Vocational Agriculture in Ponape

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dayrit, Ruben S.

    1975-01-01

    The general objectives of agriculture education in both the elementary and secondary schools in Ponape District are to develop interest in agriculture among students and to provide practical and technical skills in growing crops and raising domestic animals. (Author)

  15. Agricultural Health and Safety

    MedlinePLUS

    ... Are resources available that provide special training to healthcare personnel when treating farm injuries and chemical exposures? ... areas where agriculture is common, first responders and healthcare personnel must be prepared to treat agricultural injuries. ...

  16. Strategies for Agriculture.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Crosson, Pierre R.; Rosenberg, Norman J.

    1989-01-01

    Discusses the change of agricultural methods with human population growth. Describes the trends of world food production, changes in farmland, use of fertilizer, and 13 agricultural research institutions. Lists 5 references for further reading. (YP)

  17. Traditional Agriculture and Permaculture.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pierce, Dick

    1997-01-01

    Discusses benefits of combining traditional agricultural techniques with the concepts of "permaculture," a framework for revitalizing traditions, culture, and spirituality. Describes school, college, and community projects that have assisted American Indian communities in revitalizing sustainable agricultural practices that incorporate cultural

  18. Underdispersion and overdispersion of traits in terrestrial snail communities on islands

    PubMed Central

    Astor, Tina; Strengbom, Joachim; Berg, Matty P; Lenoir, Lisette; Marteinsdttir, Brynds; Bengtsson, Jan

    2014-01-01

    Understanding and disentangling different processes underlying the assembly and diversity of communities remains a key challenge in ecology. Species can assemble into communities either randomly or due to deterministic processes. Deterministic assembly leads to species being more similar (underdispersed) or more different (overdispersed) in certain traits than would be expected by chance. However, the relative importance of those processes is not well understood for many organisms, including terrestrial invertebrates. Based on knowledge of a broad range of species traits, we tested for the presence of trait underdispersion (indicating dispersal or environmental filtering) and trait overdispersion (indicating niche partitioning) and their relative importance in explaining land snail community composition on lake islands. The analysis of community assembly was performed using a functional diversity index (Rao's quadratic entropy) in combination with a null model approach. Regression analysis with the effect sizes of the assembly tests and environmental variables gave information on the strength of under- and overdispersion along environmental gradients. Additionally, we examined the link between community weighted mean trait values and environmental variables using a CWM-RDA. We found both trait underdispersion and trait overdispersion, but underdispersion (eight traits) was more frequently detected than overdispersion (two traits). Underdispersion was related to four environmental variables (tree cover, habitat diversity, productivity of ground vegetation, and location on an esker ridge). Our results show clear evidence for underdispersion in traits driven by environmental filtering, but no clear evidence for dispersal filtering. We did not find evidence for overdispersion of traits due to diet or body size, but overdispersion in shell shape may indicate niche differentiation between snail species driven by small-scale habitat heterogeneity. The use of species traits enabled us to identify key traits involved in snail community assembly and to detect the simultaneous occurrence of trait underdispersion and overdispersion. PMID:25360251

  19. Inheritance and linkage map positions of genes conferring agromorphological traits in Lens culinaris Medik

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agromorphological traits have immense importance in breeding lentils for higher yield and stability. We studied the genetics and identified map positions of some important agro-morphological traits including days to 50% flowering, plant height, seed diameter, 100 seed weight, cotyledon color, and gr...

  20. Irradiation of northwest agricultural products

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eakin, D. E.; Tingey, G. I.

    1985-02-01

    Irradiation of food for disinfestation and preservation is increasing in importance because of increasing restrictions on various chemical treatments. Irradiation treatment is of particular interest in the Northwest because of a growing supply of agricultural products and the need to develop new export markets. Several products have, or could potentially have, significant export markets if stringent insect ocntrol procedures are developed and followed. Due to the recognized potential benefits of irradiation, this program was conducted to evaluate the benefits of using irradiation on Northwest agricultural products. Commodities currently included in the program are cherries, apples, asparagus, spices, hay, and hides.

  1. Mapping quantitative trait loci in selected breeding populations: A segregation distortion approach.

    PubMed

    Cui, Y; Zhang, F; Xu, J; Li, Z; Xu, S

    2015-12-01

    Quantitative trait locus (QTL) mapping is often conducted in line-crossing experiments where a sample of individuals is randomly selected from a pool of all potential progeny. QTLs detected from such an experiment are important for us to understand the genetic mechanisms governing a complex trait, but may not be directly relevant to plant breeding if they are not detected from the breeding population where selection is targeting for. QTLs segregating in one population may not necessarily segregate in another population. To facilitate marker-assisted selection, QTLs must be detected from the very population which the selection is targeting. However, selected breeding populations often have depleted genetic variation with small population sizes, resulting in low power in detecting useful QTLs. On the other hand, if selection is effective, loci controlling the selected trait will deviate from the expected Mendelian segregation ratio. In this study, we proposed to detect QTLs in selected breeding populations via the detection of marker segregation distortion in either a single population or multiple populations using the same selection scheme. Simulation studies showed that QTL can be detected in strong selected populations with selected population sizes as small as 25 plants. We applied the new method to detect QTLs in two breeding populations of rice selected for high grain yield. Seven QTLs were identified, four of which have been validated in advanced generations in a follow-up study. Cloned genes in the vicinity of the four QTLs were also reported in the literatures. This mapping-by-selection approach provides a new avenue for breeders to improve breeding progress. The new method can be applied to breeding programs not only in rice but also in other agricultural species including crops, trees and animals. PMID:26126541

  2. Connecticut Vocational Agriculture Curriculum.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Connecticut State Dept. of Education, Hartford. Bureau of Vocational Services.

    Designed for use in the Connecticut Regional Vocational Agriculture Centers, this curriculum provides exploratory and specialization units for four major areas of agriculture. These are Agriculture Mechanics, Animal Science, Natural Resources, and Plant Science. The exploratory units are required for grades 9 and 10, while the specialization units…

  3. Agriculture, Environmental Education Guide.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Project I-C-E, Green Bay, WI.

    This agriculture guide, for use at the secondary level, is one of a series of guides, K-12, which were developed by teachers to help introduce environmental education into the total curriculum. Environmental problems are present in every community where agriculture education is offered, and therefore many agriculture teachers have included some

  4. Agriculture Business and Management.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Seperich, George; And Others

    This curriculum guide is intended for vocational agriculture teachers who deliver agricultural business and management programs at the secondary or postsecondary level. It is based on the Arizona validated occupational competencies and tasks for management and supervisory positions in agricultural business. The competency/skill and task list

  5. Agricultural Structures, Volume II.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Linhardt, Richard E.; Burhoe, Steve

    This guide to a curriculum unit in agricultural structures is designed to expand the curriculum materials available in vocational agriculture in Missouri. It and Agricultural Structures I (see note) provide reference materials to systematize the curriculum. The six units cover working with concrete (19 lessons, 2 laboratory exercises), drawing and

  6. Agriculture Business and Management.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Seperich, George; And Others

    This curriculum guide is intended for vocational agriculture teachers who deliver agricultural business and management programs at the secondary or postsecondary level. It is based on the Arizona validated occupational competencies and tasks for management and supervisory positions in agricultural business. The competency/skill and task list…

  7. Agricultural Structures, Volume II.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Linhardt, Richard E.; Burhoe, Steve

    This guide to a curriculum unit in agricultural structures is designed to expand the curriculum materials available in vocational agriculture in Missouri. It and Agricultural Structures I (see note) provide reference materials to systematize the curriculum. The six units cover working with concrete (19 lessons, 2 laboratory exercises), drawing and…

  8. Connecticut Vocational Agriculture Curriculum.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Connecticut State Dept. of Education, Hartford. Bureau of Vocational Services.

    Designed for use in the Connecticut Regional Vocational Agriculture Centers, this curriculum provides exploratory and specialization units for four major areas of agriculture. These are Agriculture Mechanics, Animal Science, Natural Resources, and Plant Science. The exploratory units are required for grades 9 and 10, while the specialization units

  9. Information for Agricultural Development.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kaungamno, E. E.

    This paper describes the major international agricultural information services, sources, and systems; outlines the existing information situation in Tanzania as it relates to problems of agricultural development; and reviews the improvements in information provision resources required to support the process of agricultural development in Tanzania.

  10. St Vincent Youth and Careers in Agriculture

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Webster, Nicole; Ganpat, Wayne

    2014-01-01

    Purpose: Given the ageing farming population in the Caribbean and the importance of agriculture to economy, there is cause for concern about the future of farming. This study seeks to explore the extent to which students pursuing agriculture in secondary schools in St Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG) were likely to engage in farming as well as…

  11. Agricultural Accident Prevention--Problems and Accomplishments

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bristol, Benton K.

    1976-01-01

    Titles of bulletins, for persons who are interested in agricultural accident prevention, are listed as well as examples of farm machinery manufacturers who are making special efforts to produce valuable teaching aids and to inform all segments of agriculture about important safety development. (HD)

  12. Agriculture for Little People. Publication No. 0004.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gasior, Albert G.

    The document is a collection of teacher guides to sample units introducing agriculture at the primary level; part or all of the units can be used along with the regular curriculum during the school year. Intended to acquaint K-3 students with agriculture's important role, the purpose of the course is to impart basic knowledge of materials, tools,…

  13. Inherent agricultural constraints in Allegheny Plateau soils

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The worldwide need for increased production of food requires a combination of converting marginal land to agriculture and increased productivity and sustainability of crops on existing agricultural land. Grasses make up an important part of the food directly consumed by both humans and animals. If...

  14. St Vincent Youth and Careers in Agriculture

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Webster, Nicole; Ganpat, Wayne

    2014-01-01

    Purpose: Given the ageing farming population in the Caribbean and the importance of agriculture to economy, there is cause for concern about the future of farming. This study seeks to explore the extent to which students pursuing agriculture in secondary schools in St Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG) were likely to engage in farming as well as

  15. Modelling the ecological niche from functional traits

    PubMed Central

    Kearney, Michael; Simpson, Stephen J.; Raubenheimer, David; Helmuth, Brian

    2010-01-01

    The niche concept is central to ecology but is often depicted descriptively through observing associations between organisms and habitats. Here, we argue for the importance of mechanistically modelling niches based on functional traits of organisms and explore the possibilities for achieving this through the integration of three theoretical frameworks: biophysical ecology (BE), the geometric framework for nutrition (GF) and dynamic energy budget (DEB) models. These three frameworks are fundamentally based on the conservation laws of thermodynamics, describing energy and mass balance at the level of the individual and capturing the prodigious predictive power of the concepts of ‘homeostasis’ and ‘evolutionary fitness’. BE and the GF provide mechanistic multi-dimensional depictions of climatic and nutritional niches, respectively, providing a foundation for linking organismal traits (morphology, physiology, behaviour) with habitat characteristics. In turn, they provide driving inputs and cost functions for mass/energy allocation within the individual as determined by DEB models. We show how integration of the three frameworks permits calculation of activity constraints, vital rates (survival, development, growth, reproduction) and ultimately population growth rates and species distributions. When integrated with contemporary niche theory, functional trait niche models hold great promise for tackling major questions in ecology and evolutionary biology. PMID:20921046

  16. 7 CFR 1209.8 - Importer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... AND ORDERS; MISCELLANEOUS COMMODITIES), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE MUSHROOM PROMOTION, RESEARCH, AND CONSUMER INFORMATION ORDER Mushroom Promotion, Research, and Consumer Information Order Definitions 1209.8 Importer. Importer means any person who imports, on average, over 500,000 pounds of...

  17. 7 CFR 1209.8 - Importer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... AND ORDERS; MISCELLANEOUS COMMODITIES), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE MUSHROOM PROMOTION, RESEARCH, AND CONSUMER INFORMATION ORDER Mushroom Promotion, Research, and Consumer Information Order Definitions 1209.8 Importer. Importer means any person who imports, on average, over 500,000 pounds of...

  18. 7 CFR 1209.8 - Importer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... AND ORDERS; MISCELLANEOUS COMMODITIES), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE MUSHROOM PROMOTION, RESEARCH, AND CONSUMER INFORMATION ORDER Mushroom Promotion, Research, and Consumer Information Order Definitions 1209.8 Importer. Importer means any person who imports, on average, over 500,000 pounds of...

  19. 7 CFR 1209.8 - Importer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... AND ORDERS; MISCELLANEOUS COMMODITIES), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE MUSHROOM PROMOTION, RESEARCH, AND CONSUMER INFORMATION ORDER Mushroom Promotion, Research, and Consumer Information Order Definitions 1209.8 Importer. Importer means any person who imports, on average, over 500,000 pounds of...

  20. 7 CFR 1209.8 - Importer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... AND ORDERS; MISCELLANEOUS COMMODITIES), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE MUSHROOM PROMOTION, RESEARCH, AND CONSUMER INFORMATION ORDER Mushroom Promotion, Research, and Consumer Information Order Definitions 1209.8 Importer. Importer means any person who imports, on average, over 500,000 pounds of...

  1. 7 CFR 1208.10 - Importer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... AND ORDERS; MISCELLANEOUS COMMODITIES), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE PROCESSED RASPBERRY PROMOTION, RESEARCH, AND INFORMATION ORDER Processed Raspberry Promotion, Research, and Information Order Definitions 1208.10 Importer. Importer means any person importing 20,000 pounds or more of processed...

  2. 7 CFR 1208.10 - Importer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... AND ORDERS; MISCELLANEOUS COMMODITIES), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE PROCESSED RASPBERRY PROMOTION, RESEARCH, AND INFORMATION ORDER Processed Raspberry Promotion, Research, and Information Order Definitions 1208.10 Importer. Importer means any person importing 20,000 pounds or more of processed...

  3. CHARACTERIZATION OF WILD MALUS POPULATIONS USING GENOTYPIC AND PHENOTYPIC TRAITS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Malus sieversii, a wild relative of domestic apple, represents an important source of genetic variation for several horticulturally important traits including fruit quality and disease resistance. Collections made by the USDA in Kazakhstan have now been analyzed to determine the extent of diversity...

  4. Linking Tropical Forest Function to Hydraulic Traits in a Size-Structured and Trait-Based Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Christoffersen, B. O.; Gloor, E. U.; Fauset, S.; Fyllas, N.; Galbraith, D.; Baker, T. R.; Rowland, L.; Fisher, R.; Binks, O.; Mencuccini, M.; Malhi, Y.; Stahl, C.; Wagner, F. H.; Bonal, D.; da Costa, A. C. L.; Ferreira, L.; Meir, P.

    2014-12-01

    A major weakness of forest ecosystem models applied to Amazonia is their inability to capture the diversity of responses to changes in water availability commonly observed within and across forest communities, severely hampering efforts to predict the fate of Amazon forests under climate change. Such models often prescribe moisture sensitivity using heuristic response functions which are uniform across all individuals and lack important knowledge about trade-offs in hydraulic traits. We address this weakness by implementing a process representation of plant hydraulics into an individual- and trait-based model (Trait Forest Simulator; TFS) intended for application at discrete sites across Amazonia. The model represents a trade-off in the safety and efficiency of water conduction in xylem tissue through hydraulic traits, which then lead to variation in plant water use and growth dynamics. The model accounts for the buffering effects of leaf and stem capacitance on leaf water potential at short time scales, and cavitation-induced reductions in whole-plant conductance over longer periods of water stress. We explore multiple possible links between this hydraulic trait spectrum and other whole-plant traits, such as maximum photosynthetic capacity and wood density. The model is shown to greatly improve the diversity of tree response to seasonal changes in water availability as well as response to drought, as determined by comparison with sap flux and stem dendrometry measurements. Importantly, this individual- and trait-based framework provides a testbed for identifying both critical processes and functional traits needed for inclusion in coarse-scale Dynamic Global Vegetation Models, which will lead to reduced uncertainty in the future state of Amazon tropical forests.

  5. Can traits predict species' vulnerability? A test with farmland passerines in two continents.

    PubMed

    Pocock, Michael J O

    2011-05-22

    Species' traits have been used both to explain and, increasingly, to predict species' vulnerability. Trait-based comparative analyses allow mechanisms causing vulnerability to be inferred and, ideally, conservation effort to be focused efficiently and effectively. However, empirical evidence of the predictive ability of trait-based approaches is largely wanting. I tested the predictive power of trait-based analyses on geographically replicated datasets of farmland bird population trends. I related the traits of farmland passerines with their long-term trends in abundance (an assessment of their response to agricultural intensification) in eight regions in two continents. These analyses successfully identified explanatory relationships in the regions, specifically: species faring badly tended to be medium-sized, had relatively short incubation and fledging periods, were longer distant migrants, had small relative brain sizes and were farmland specialists. Despite this, the models had poor ability to predict species' vulnerability in one region from trait-population trend relationships from a different region. In many cases, the explained variation was low (median R(2) = 8%). The low predictive ability of trait-based analyses must therefore be considered if such trait-based models are used to inform conservation priorities. PMID:21047852

  6. Can traits predict species' vulnerability? A test with farmland passerines in two continents

    PubMed Central

    Pocock, Michael J. O.

    2011-01-01

    Species' traits have been used both to explain and, increasingly, to predict species' vulnerability. Trait-based comparative analyses allow mechanisms causing vulnerability to be inferred and, ideally, conservation effort to be focused efficiently and effectively. However, empirical evidence of the predictive ability of trait-based approaches is largely wanting. I tested the predictive power of trait-based analyses on geographically replicated datasets of farmland bird population trends. I related the traits of farmland passerines with their long-term trends in abundance (an assessment of their response to agricultural intensification) in eight regions in two continents. These analyses successfully identified explanatory relationships in the regions, specifically: species faring badly tended to be medium-sized, had relatively short incubation and fledging periods, were longer distant migrants, had small relative brain sizes and were farmland specialists. Despite this, the models had poor ability to predict species' vulnerability in one region from traitpopulation trend relationships from a different region. In many cases, the explained variation was low (median R2 = 8%). The low predictive ability of trait-based analyses must therefore be considered if such trait-based models are used to inform conservation priorities. PMID:21047852

  7. [Study of trait anxiety in children with different profiles of lateral organization after early social deprivation].

    PubMed

    A?rapetiants, M G; Lushchekina, E A; Shkol'nik, T K

    2004-01-01

    School behavior and learning were examined in 68 right-, lefthanded, and ambidextral 10-12-year-old children earlier exposed to social deprivation. Socially deprived children revealed stress and high trait anxiety. "Imposed lefthandedness" is considered to be an important factor responsible for the high level of trait anxiety. In the group of socially deprived children persons with sanguinic temperament showed the lowest, and melancholies showed the highest levels of trait anxiety as compared to the control group. PMID:15174268

  8. Relationships between Nutrient-Related Plant Traits and Combinations of Soil N and P Fertility Measures

    PubMed Central

    Fujita, Yuki; van Bodegom, Peter M.; Witte, Jan-Philip M.

    2013-01-01

    Soil fertility and nutrient-related plant functional traits are in general only moderately related, hindering the progress in trait-based prediction models of vegetation patterns. Although the relationships may have been obscured by suboptimal choices in how soil fertility is expressed, there has never been a systematic investigation into the suitability of fertility measures. This study, therefore, examined the effect of different soil fertility measures on the strength of fertilitytrait relationships in 134 natural plant communities. In particular, for eight plot-mean traits we examined (1) whether different elements (N or P) have contrasting or shared influences, (2) which timescale of fertility measures (e.g. mineralization rates for one or five years) has better predictive power, and (3) if integrated fertility measures explain trait variation better than individual fertility measures. Soil N and P had large mutual effects on leaf nutrient concentrations, whereas they had element-specific effects on traits related to species composition (e.g. Grime's CSR strategy). The timescale of fertility measures only had a minor impact on fertilitytrait relationships. Two integrated fertility measures (one reflecting overall fertility, another relative availability of soil N and P) were related significantly to most plant traits, but were not better in explaining trait variation than individual fertility measures. Using all fertility measures together, between-site variations of plant traits were explained only moderately for some traits (e.g. 33% for leaf N concentrations) but largely for others (e.g. 66% for whole-canopy P concentration). The moderate relationships were probably due to complex regulation mechanisms of fertility on traits, rather than to a wrong choice of fertility measures. We identified both mutual (i.e. shared) and divergent (i.e. element-specific and stoichiometric) effects of soil N and P on traits, implying the importance of explicitly considering the roles of different elements to properly interpret fertilitytrait relationships. PMID:24391815

  9. Quantitative trait Loci for health traits in Finnish Ayrshire cattle.

    PubMed

    Schulman, N F; Viitala, S M; de Koning, D J; Virta, J; Mki-Tanila, A; Vilkki, J H

    2004-02-01

    A whole-genome scan was conducted to search for quantitative trait loci (QTL) affecting health traits in Finnish Ayrshire dairy cattle. The mapping population consisted of 12 bulls and their 491 sons in a granddaughter design. A total of 150 markers were typed covering all 29 autosomes. The traits under study were somatic cell score, mastitis, and a group of other veterinary treatments. Effects of the QTL and positions were estimated with the regression method. When carrying out interval mapping on each chromosome, cofactors were used to adjust for QTL identified at other chromosomes. Empirical P-values were obtained by permutation. Altogether 17 QTL were detected with genomewise significant P-values in the across family analysis. Quantitative trait loci affecting SCS were identified on chromosomes 1, 3, 11, 18, 21, 24, 27, 29, and QTL for mastitis on chromosomes 14, 18. Quantitative trait loci for other veterinary treatments were found on chromosomes 1, 2, 5, 8, 15, 22, and 23. The allele substitution effects were from 0.5 to 1.7 genetic standard deviations. The positions of these health QTL did not overlap with milk QTL detected in previous studies of the same population. PMID:14762087

  10. Quantitative trait loci for biofortification traits in maize grain.

    PubMed

    Simi?, Domagoj; Mladenovi? Drini?, Snezana; Zduni?, Zvonimir; Jambrovi?, Antun; Ledencan, Tatjana; Brki?, Josip; Brki?, Andrija; Brki?, Ivan

    2012-01-01

    Detecting genes that influence biofortification traits in cereal grain could help increase the concentrations of bioavailable mineral elements in crops to solve the global mineral malnutrition problem. The aims of this study were to detect the quantitative trait loci (QTLs) for phosphorus (P), iron (Fe), zinc (Zn), and magnesium (Mg) concentrations in maize grain in a mapping population, as well as QTLs for bioavailable Fe, Zn, and Mg, by precalculating their respective ratios with P. Elemental analysis of grain samples was done by coupled plasma-optical emission spectrometry in 294 F(4) lines of a biparental population taken from field trials of over 3 years. The population was mapped using sets of 121 polymorphic markers. QTL analysis revealed 32 significant QTLs detected for 7 traits, of which some were colocalized. The Additive-dominant model revealed highly significant additive effects, suggesting that biofortification traits in maize are generally controlled by numerous small-effect QTLs. Three QTLs for Fe/P, Zn/P, and Mg/P were colocalized on chromosome 3, coinciding with simple sequence repeats marker bnlg1456, which resides in close proximity to previously identified phytase genes (ZM phys1 and phys2). Thus, we recommend the ratios as bioavailability traits in biofortification research. PMID:22071312

  11. Economic weights for performance and survival traits of growing pigs.

    PubMed

    Hermesch, S; Ludemann, C I; Amer, P R

    2014-12-01

    The objective of this paper was to derive economic weights for performance and survival traits of growing pigs including feed conversion ratio (FCR), daily feed intake (DFI), ADG, postweaning survival of the growing pig (SG), and carcass fat depth at the P2 site (CFD). An independent model was developed for each trait to derive economic values directly based on a typical Australian production system. This flexible approach may be used to customize economic values for different production systems and alternative trait combinations in breeding objectives. Discounted genetic expressions were used as a means of taking into account differences in frequency and timing of expression of traits to obtain economic weights. Economic values for SG were derived based on a cost-saving and a lost-revenue approach. The correct formulation of the economic value of ADG depends on how feed cost is included in the breeding objective. If FCR is defined as a breeding objective trait, then savings in feed costs through earlier slaughter should not be counted in the economic value of ADG. In contrast, if DFI is included in the breeding objective instead of FCR, then feed-cost savings through earlier slaughter need to be attributed to the economic value for ADG, as a benefit from faster ADG. The paper also demonstrates that economic weightings in indexes for FCR can potentially be overestimated by 70% when it is assumed that DFI or FCR records taken from a limited duration test period reflect the corresponding trait over the full lifetime of the growing pig destined for slaughter. Postweaning survival of the growing pig was the most important breeding objective trait of growing pigs. The relative importance of each breeding objective trait in a sire-line index based on the genetic SD of each trait was 44.5, 27.0, 17.4, and 11.1% for SG, FCR, ADG, and CFD, respectively. Further studies to better clarify the extent of genetic variation that exists in SG under nucleus-farm and commercial-farm conditions are warranted, given the high economic importance of this survival trait of growing pigs. PMID:25367529

  12. High visual working memory capacity in trait social anxiety.

    PubMed

    Moriya, Jun; Sugiura, Yoshinori

    2012-01-01

    Working memory capacity is one of the most important cognitive functions influencing individual traits, such as attentional control, fluid intelligence, and also psychopathological traits. Previous research suggests that anxiety is associated with impaired cognitive function, and studies have shown low verbal working memory capacity in individuals with high trait anxiety. However, the relationship between trait anxiety and visual working memory capacity is still unclear. Considering that people allocate visual attention more widely to detect danger under threat, visual working memory capacity might be higher in anxious people. In the present study, we show that visual working memory capacity increases as trait social anxiety increases by using a change detection task. When the demand to inhibit distractors increased, however, high visual working memory capacity diminished in individuals with social anxiety, and instead, impaired filtering of distractors was predicted by trait social anxiety. State anxiety was not correlated with visual working memory capacity. These results indicate that socially anxious people could potentially hold a large amount of information in working memory. However, because of an impaired cognitive function, they could not inhibit goal-irrelevant distractors and their performance decreased under highly demanding conditions. PMID:22496783

  13. The short and the long of it: SD1 polymorphism and the evolution of growth trait divergence in U.S. weedy rice

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Growth related traits are thought to enhance competitiveness of agricultural weeds. U.S. weedy rice, a major conspecific weed of cultivated rice (Oryza sativa), displays variation for growth traits. Prior studies have shown that major U.S. weedy rice populations likely evolved from domesticated grou...

  14. Generality of leaf trait relationships: A test across six biomes

    SciTech Connect

    Reich, P.B.; Ellsworth, D.S.; Walters, M.B.; Vose, J.M.; Gresham, C.; Volin, J.C.; Bowman, W.D. |

    1999-09-01

    Convergence in interspecific leaf trait relationships across diverse taxonomic groups and biomes would have important evolutionary and ecological implications. Such convergence has been hypothesized to result from trade-offs that limit the combination of plant traits for any species. Here the authors address this issue by testing for biome differences in the slope and intercept of interspecific relationships among leaf traits: longevity, net photosynthetic capacity (A{sub max}), leaf diffusive conductance (G{sub S}), specific leaf area (SLA), and nitrogen (N) status, for more than 100 species in six distinct biomes of the Americas. The six biomes were: alpine tundra-subalpine forest ecotone, cold temperate forest-prairie ecotone, montane cool temperate forest, desert shrubland, subtropical forest, and tropical rain forest. Despite large differences in climate and evolutionary history, in all biomes mass-based leaf N (N{sub mass}), SLA, G{sub S}, and A{sub max} were positively related to one another and decreased with increasing leaf life span. The relationships between pairs of leaf traits exhibited similar slopes among biomes, suggesting a predictable set of scaling relationships among key leaf morphological, chemical, and metabolic traits that are replicated globally among terrestrial ecosystems regardless of biome or vegetation type. However, the intercept (i.e., the overall elevation of regression lines) of relationships between pairs of leaf traits usually differed among biomes. With increasing aridity across sites, species had greater A{sub max} for a given level of G{sub S} and lower SLA for any given leaf life span. Using principal components analysis, most variation among species was explained by an axis related to mass-based leaf traits (A{sub max}, N, and SLA) while a second axis reflected climate, G{sub S}, and other area-based leaf traits.

  15. The modulation of somatosensory resonance by psychopathic traits and empathy

    PubMed Central

    Marcoux, Louis-Alexandre; Michon, Pierre-Emmanuel; Voisin, Julien I. A.; Lemelin, Sophie; Vachon-Presseau, Etienne; Jackson, Philip L.

    2013-01-01

    A large number of neuroimaging studies have shown neural overlaps between first-hand experiences of pain and the perception of pain in others. This shared neural representation of vicarious pain is thought to involve both affective and sensorimotor systems. A number of individual factors are thought to modulate the cerebral response to other's pain. The goal of this study was to investigate the impact of psychopathic traits on the relation between sensorimotor resonance to other's pain and self-reported empathy. Our group has previously shown that a steady-state response to non-painful stimulation is modulated by the observation of other people's bodily pain. This change in somatosensory response was interpreted as a form of somatosensory gating (SG). Here, using the same technique, SG was compared between two groups of 15 young adult males: one scoring very high on a self-reported measure of psychopathic traits [60.8 4.98; Levenson's Self-Report Psychopathy Scale (LSRP)] and one scoring very low (42.7 2.94). The results showed a significantly greater reduction of SG to pain observation for the high psychopathic traits group compared to the low psychopathic traits group. SG to pain observation was positively correlated with affective and interpersonal facet of psychopathy in the whole sample. The high psychopathic traits group also reported lower empathic concern (EC) scores than the low psychopathic traits group. Importantly, primary psychopathy, as assessed by the LSRP, mediated the relation between EC and SG to pain observation. Together, these results suggest that increase somatosensory resonance to other's pain is not exclusively explained by trait empathy and may be linked to other personality dimensions, such as psychopathic traits. PMID:23801950

  16. [Effects of agricultural practices on community structure of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi in agricultural ecosystem: a review].

    PubMed

    Sheng, Ping-Ping; Li, Min; Liu, Run-Jin

    2011-06-01

    Arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi are rich in diversity in agricultural ecosystem, playing a vital role based on their unique community structure. Host plants and environmental factors have important effects on AM fungal community structure, so do the agricultural practices which deserve to pay attention to. This paper summarized the research advances in the effects of agricultural practices such as irrigation, fertilization, crop rotation, intercropping, tillage, and pesticide application on AM fungal community structure, analyzed the related possible mechanisms, discussed the possible ways in improving AM fungal community structure in agricultural ecosystem, and put forward a set of countermeasures, i.e., improving fertilization system and related integrated techniques, increasing plant diversity in agricultural ecosystem, and inoculating AM fungi, to enhance the AM fungal diversity in agricultural ecosystem. The existing problems in current agricultural practices and further research directions were also proposed. PMID:21941770

  17. 7 CFR 319.74-3 - Importations by the Department.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOREIGN QUARANTINE NOTICES Cut Flowers 319.74-3 Importations by the Department. The U.S. Department of Agriculture may import cut flowers for experimental...

  18. 7 CFR 319.74-3 - Importations by the Department.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOREIGN QUARANTINE NOTICES Cut Flowers 319.74-3 Importations by the Department. The U.S. Department of Agriculture may import cut flowers for experimental...

  19. 7 CFR 319.74-3 - Importations by the Department.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOREIGN QUARANTINE NOTICES Cut Flowers 319.74-3 Importations by the Department. The U.S. Department of Agriculture may import cut flowers for experimental...

  20. 7 CFR 319.74-3 - Importations by the Department.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOREIGN QUARANTINE NOTICES Cut Flowers 319.74-3 Importations by the Department. The U.S. Department of Agriculture may import cut flowers for experimental...

  1. Geologic research in support of sustainable agriculture

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gough, L.P.; Herring, J.R.

    1993-01-01

    The importance and role of the geosciences in studies of sustainable agriculture include such traditional research areas as, agromineral resource assessments, the mapping and classification of soils and soil amendments, and the evaluation of landscapes for their vulnerability to physical and chemical degradation. Less traditional areas of study, that are increasing in societal importance because of environmental concerns and research into sustainable systems in general, include regional geochemical studies of plant and animal trace element deficiencies and toxicities, broad-scale water quality investigations, agricultural chemicals and the hydrogeologic interface, and minimally processed and ion-exchange agrominerals. We discuss the importance and future of phosphate in the US and world based on human population growth, projected agromineral demands in general, and the unavailability of new, high-quality agricultural lands. We also present examples of studies that relate geochemistry and the hydrogeologic characteristics of a region to the bioavailability and cycling of trace elements important to sustainable agricultural systems. ?? 1993.

  2. Water Depletion Threatens Agriculture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brauman, K. A.; Richter, B. D.; Postel, S.; Floerke, M.; Malsy, M.

    2014-12-01

    Irrigated agriculture is the human activity that has by far the largest impact on water, constituting 85% of global water consumption and 67% of global water withdrawals. Much of this water use occurs in places where water depletion, the ratio of water consumption to water availability, exceeds 75% for at least one month of the year. Although only 17% of global watershed area experiences depletion at this level or more, nearly 30% of total cropland and 60% of irrigated cropland are found in these depleted watersheds. Staple crops are particularly at risk, with 75% of global irrigated wheat production and 65% of irrigated maize production found in watersheds that are at least seasonally depleted. Of importance to textile production, 75% of cotton production occurs in the same watersheds. For crop production in depleted watersheds, we find that one half to two-thirds of production occurs in watersheds that have not just seasonal but annual water shortages, suggesting that re-distributing water supply over the course of the year cannot be an effective solution to shortage. We explore the degree to which irrigated production in depleted watersheds reflects limitations in supply, a byproduct of the need for irrigation in perennially or seasonally dry landscapes, and identify heavy irrigation consumption that leads to watershed depletion in more humid climates. For watersheds that are not depleted, we evaluate the potential impact of an increase in irrigated production. Finally, we evaluate the benefits of irrigated agriculture in depleted and non-depleted watersheds, quantifying the fraction of irrigated production going to food production, animal feed, and biofuels.

  3. Evolutionary analysis of herbivorous insects in natural and agricultural environments.

    PubMed

    Gassmann, Aaron J; Onstad, David W; Pittendrigh, Barry R

    2009-11-01

    Herbivorous insects offer a remarkable example of the biological diversity that formed the foundation for Darwin's theory of evolution by natural selection. The ability of insects to evolve resistance rapidly to insecticides and host-plant resistance present a continual challenge for pest management. This paper considers the manner in which genetic constraints, host-plant availability and trade-offs affect the evolution of herbivorous insects in natural and agricultural environments, and the extent to which lessons learned from studying natural systems may be applied to improve insect resistance management in agricultural systems. Studies on the genetic architecture of adaptation by herbivores to host plants and to insecticides are reviewed. The genetic basis of resistance is an important component of simulation models that predict the evolution of resistance. These models often assume monogenic resistance, but available data suggest that this assumption may be overly narrow and that modeling of resistance as oligogenic or polygenic may be more appropriate. As omics (e.g. genomics and proteomics) technologies become more accessible, a better understanding of the genetic basis of resistance will be possible. Trade-offs often accompany adaptations by herbivores. Trade-offs arise when the benefit of a trait, such as the ability to feed on a novel host plant or to survive in the presence of an insecticide, is counterbalanced by fitness costs that decrease fitness in the absence of the selective agent. For resistance to insecticides, and resistance to insecticidal transgenic crops in particular, fitness costs may act as an evolutionary constraint and delay or prevent the evolution of resistance. An important observation is that certain ecological factors such as host plants and entomopathogens can magnify fitness costs, which is termed ecological negative cross-resistance. The application of omics technologies may allow for more efficient identification of factors that will impose ecological negative cross-resistance, thereby bolstering insect resistance management. PMID:19757500

  4. Life-history traits and landscape characteristics predict macro-moth responses to forest fragmentation.

    PubMed

    Slade, Eleanor M; Merckx, Thomas; Riutta, Terhi; Bebber, Daniel P; Redhead, David; Riordan, Philip; Macdonald, David W

    2013-07-01

    How best to manage forest patches, mitigate the consequences of forest fragmentation, and enable landscape permeability are key questions facing conservation scientists and managers. Many temperate forests have become increasingly fragmented, resulting in reduced interior forest habitat, increased edge habitats, and reduced connectivity. Using a citizen science landscape-scale mark-release-recapture study on 87 macro-moth species, we investigated how both life-history traits and landscape characteristics predicted macro-moth responses to forest fragmentation. Wingspan, wing shape, adult feeding, and larval feeding guild predicted macro-moth mobility, although the predictive power of wingspan and wing shape depended on the species' affinity to the forest. Solitary trees and small fragments functioned as "stepping stones," especially when their landscape connectivity was increased, by being positioned within hedgerows or within a favorable matrix. Mobile forest specialists were most affected by forest fragmentation: despite their high intrinsic dispersal capability, these species were confined mostly to the largest of the forest patches due to their strong affinity for the forest habitat, and were also heavily dependent on forest connectivity in order to cross the agricultural matrix. Forest fragments need to be larger than five hectares and to have interior forest more than 100 m from the edge in order to sustain populations of forest specialists. Our study provides new insights into the movement patterns of a functionally important insect group, with implications for the landscape-scale management of forest patches within agricultural landscapes. PMID:23951712

  5. Similar traits, different genes? Examining convergent evolution in related weedy rice populations

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Convergent phenotypic evolution may or may not be associated with parallel genotypic evolution. Agricultural weeds have repeatedly been selected for weed-adaptive traits such as rapid growth, increased seed dispersal and dormancy, thus providing an ideal system for the study of parallel evolution. H...

  6. Analyzing global carbon uptake patterns using plant trait data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van de Weg, M. J.; Musavi, T. S.; Van Bodegom, P.; Kattge, J.; Mahecha, M. D.; Reichstein, M.; Bahn, M.

    2013-12-01

    Environment and climate are two important factors in determining global terrestrial CO2 flux patterns, as well as vegetation type and structure. At the moment, in many global CO2 flux analyses the vegetation is represented by plant functional types (PFTs). However, the variance in plant traits within PFTs is as large as between them, suggesting that PFTs do not necessary represent patterns of plant traits as found world wide. And while the correlations between plant traits (e.g. foliar nutrients, leaf mass per area) and CO2 uptake are well established at plant level, this is not the case at ecosystem level. The recently established plant trait database TRY (www.TRY-db.org), together with FLUXNET data give us now new opportunities to analyze ecosystem CO2fluxes at global scale using species plant traits rather than PFTs. Analyzing worldwide CO2 flux data with plant traits comes with some challenges regarding the different spatio-and temporal nature of both data types. Therefore, rather than directly using CO2 fluxes (for which each FLUXNET sites has a different seasonality and different diurnal pattern), we can derive so called ecosystem functional properties (EFPs), which are emergent properties of the ecosystem in response to environmental drivers and are influenced by the structural and physiological properties of the ecosystem. The plant traits in turn are scaled up in a way they become an average representative value for the sites in the analysis, and become suitable to compare to EFPs. Here we present the results of a first study that analyzed global patterns of the EFP GPP1000 max (the maximum gross primary productivity at light saturation) with plant traits measured in situ and derived from the TRY database. In addition to presenting the results we discuss the importance of differences in data origins and data quality (e.g. in situ traits vs. database derived traits, leaf area index (LAI) data from auxiliary FLUXNET data vs remotely sensed LAI, etc.) for this type of analysis.

  7. Neutral and selection-driven decay of sexual traits in asexual stick insects

    PubMed Central

    Schwander, Tanja; Crespi, Bernard J.; Gries, Regine; Gries, Gerhard

    2013-01-01

    Environmental shifts and lifestyle changes may result in formerly adaptive traits becoming non-functional or maladaptive. The subsequent decay of such traits highlights the importance of natural selection for adaptations, yet its causes have rarely been investigated. To study the fate of formerly adaptive traits after lifestyle changes, we evaluated sexual traits in five independently derived asexual lineages, including traits that are specific to males and therefore not exposed to selection. At least four of the asexual lineages retained the capacity to produce males that display normal courtship behaviours and are able to fertilize eggs of females from related sexual species. The maintenance of male traits may stem from pleiotropy, or from these traits only regressing via drift, which may require millions of years to generate phenotypic effects. By contrast, we found parallel decay of sexual traits in females. Asexual females produced altered airborne and contact signals, had modified sperm storage organs, and lost the ability to fertilize their eggs, impeding reversals to sexual reproduction. Female sexual traits were decayed even in recently derived asexuals, suggesting that trait changes following the evolution of asexuality, when they occur, proceed rapidly and are driven by selective processes rather than drift. PMID:23782880

  8. Agricultural Occupations Program Planning Guide.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hemp, Paul E.; Mayer, Leon

    The major program objectives of agricultural occupations courses are (1) to develop agricultural competencies needed by individuals engaged in or preparing to engage in production agriculture, and in agricultural occupations other than production agriculture; (2) to develop an understanding of the career opportunities in agriculture; (3) to…

  9. The role of conservation agriculture in sustainable agriculture.

    PubMed

    Hobbs, Peter R; Sayre, Ken; Gupta, Raj

    2008-02-12

    The paper focuses on conservation agriculture (CA), defined as minimal soil disturbance (no-till, NT) and permanent soil cover (mulch) combined with rotations, as a more sustainable cultivation system for the future. Cultivation and tillage play an important role in agriculture. The benefits of tillage in agriculture are explored before introducing conservation tillage (CT), a practice that was borne out of the American dust bowl of the 1930s. The paper then describes the benefits of CA, a suggested improvement on CT, where NT, mulch and rotations significantly improve soil properties and other biotic factors. The paper concludes that CA is a more sustainable and environmentally friendly management system for cultivating crops. Case studies from the rice-wheat areas of the Indo-Gangetic Plains of South Asia and the irrigated maize-wheat systems of Northwest Mexico are used to describe how CA practices have been used in these two environments to raise production sustainably and profitably. Benefits in terms of greenhouse gas emissions and their effect on global warming are also discussed. The paper concludes that agriculture in the next decade will have to sustainably produce more food from less land through more efficient use of natural resources and with minimal impact on the environment in order to meet growing population demands. Promoting and adopting CA management systems can help meet this goal. PMID:17720669

  10. Agricultural aviation research

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chevalier, H. L. (Compiler); Bouse, L. F. (Compiler)

    1977-01-01

    A compilation of papers, comments, and results is provided during a workshop session. The purpose of the workshop was to review and evaluate the current state of the art of agricultural aviation, to identify and rank potentially productive short and long range research and development areas, and to strengthen communications between research scientists and engineers involved in agricultural research. Approximately 71 individuals actively engaged in agricultural aviation research were invited to participate in the workshop. These were persons familiar with problems related to agricultural aviation and processing expertise which are of value for identifying and proposing beneficial research.

  11. 7 CFR 6.3 - Requests by interested persons for action by Department of Agriculture.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 1 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Requests by interested persons for action by Department of Agriculture. 6.3 Section 6.3 Agriculture Office of the Secretary of Agriculture IMPORT QUOTAS AND FEES General Provisions § 6.3 Requests by interested persons for action by Department of Agriculture. (a) Section 22. A request for action...

  12. 7 CFR 6.3 - Requests by interested persons for action by Department of Agriculture.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 1 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Requests by interested persons for action by Department of Agriculture. 6.3 Section 6.3 Agriculture Office of the Secretary of Agriculture IMPORT QUOTAS... Agriculture. (a) Section 22. A request for action under section 22 should be submitted in duplicate to...

  13. 7 CFR 6.3 - Requests by interested persons for action by Department of Agriculture.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 1 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Requests by interested persons for action by Department of Agriculture. 6.3 Section 6.3 Agriculture Office of the Secretary of Agriculture IMPORT QUOTAS... Agriculture. (a) Section 22. A request for action under section 22 should be submitted in duplicate to...

  14. 7 CFR 6.3 - Requests by interested persons for action by Department of Agriculture.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 1 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Requests by interested persons for action by Department of Agriculture. 6.3 Section 6.3 Agriculture Office of the Secretary of Agriculture IMPORT QUOTAS... Agriculture. (a) Section 22. A request for action under section 22 should be submitted in duplicate to...

  15. 7 CFR 6.3 - Requests by interested persons for action by Department of Agriculture.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 1 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Requests by interested persons for action by Department of Agriculture. 6.3 Section 6.3 Agriculture Office of the Secretary of Agriculture IMPORT QUOTAS... Agriculture. (a) Section 22. A request for action under section 22 should be submitted in duplicate to...

  16. 7 CFR 57.920 - Importer to make application for inspection of imported eggs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... imported eggs. 57.920 Section 57.920 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued... (CONTINUED) REGULATIONS AND STANDARDS UNDER THE AGRICULTURAL MARKETING ACT OF 1946 AND THE EGG PRODUCTS INSPECTION ACT (CONTINUED) INSPECTION OF EGGS (EGG PRODUCTS INSPECTION ACT) Regulations Governing...

  17. 7 CFR 57.920 - Importer to make application for inspection of imported eggs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... imported eggs. 57.920 Section 57.920 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued... (CONTINUED) REGULATIONS AND STANDARDS UNDER THE AGRICULTURAL MARKETING ACT OF 1946 AND THE EGG PRODUCTS INSPECTION ACT (CONTINUED) INSPECTION OF EGGS (EGG PRODUCTS INSPECTION ACT) Regulations Governing...

  18. 7 CFR 57.920 - Importer to make application for inspection of imported eggs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... imported eggs. 57.920 Section 57.920 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued... (CONTINUED) REGULATIONS AND STANDARDS UNDER THE AGRICULTURAL MARKETING ACT OF 1946 AND THE EGG PRODUCTS INSPECTION ACT (CONTINUED) INSPECTION OF EGGS (EGG PRODUCTS INSPECTION ACT) Regulations Governing...

  19. 7 CFR 57.920 - Importer to make application for inspection of imported eggs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... imported eggs. 57.920 Section 57.920 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued... (CONTINUED) REGULATIONS AND STANDARDS UNDER THE AGRICULTURAL MARKETING ACT OF 1946 AND THE EGG PRODUCTS INSPECTION ACT (CONTINUED) INSPECTION OF EGGS (EGG PRODUCTS INSPECTION ACT) Regulations Governing...

  20. 7 CFR 57.920 - Importer to make application for inspection of imported eggs.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... imported eggs. 57.920 Section 57.920 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued... (CONTINUED) REGULATIONS AND STANDARDS UNDER THE AGRICULTURAL MARKETING ACT OF 1946 AND THE EGG PRODUCTS INSPECTION ACT (CONTINUED) INSPECTION OF EGGS (EGG PRODUCTS INSPECTION ACT) Regulations Governing...

  1. Interrelationships among life-history traits in three California oaks.

    PubMed

    Barringer, Brian C; Koenig, Walter D; Knops, Johannes M H

    2013-01-01

    Life-history traits interact in important ways. Relatively few studies, however, have explored the relationships between life-history traits in long-lived taxa such as trees. We examined patterns of energy allocation to components of reproduction and growth in three species of California oaks (Quercus spp.) using a combination of annual acorn censuses, dendrometer bands to measure radial increment, and litterfall traps. Our results are generally consistent with the hypothesis that energy invested in reproduction detracts from the amount of energy available for growth in these long-lived taxa; i.e., there are trade-offs between these traits. The relationships between reproduction and growth varied substantially among specific trait combinations and tree species, however, and in some cases were in the direction opposite that expected based on the assumption of trade-offs between them. This latter finding appears to be a consequence of the pattern of resource use across years in these long-lived trees contrasting with the expected partitioning of resource use within years in short-lived taxa. Thus, the existence and magnitude of putative trade-offs varied depending on whether the time scale considered was within or across years. Collectively, our results indicate that negative relationships between fundamental life-history traits can be important at multiple levels of modular organization and that energy invested in reproduction can have measurable consequences in terms of the amount of energy available for future reproduction and both current and future growth. PMID:22707038

  2. 7 CFR 319.59-2 - General import prohibitions; exceptions.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 5 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false General import prohibitions; exceptions. 319.59-2 Section 319.59-2 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) ANIMAL AND PLANT HEALTH INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOREIGN QUARANTINE NOTICES Wheat Diseases ...

  3. 7 CFR 319.59-2 - General import prohibitions; exceptions.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 5 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false General import prohibitions; exceptions. 319.59-2 Section 319.59-2 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) ANIMAL AND PLANT HEALTH INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOREIGN QUARANTINE NOTICES Wheat Diseases ...

  4. 7 CFR 319.59-2 - General import prohibitions; exceptions.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 5 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false General import prohibitions; exceptions. 319.59-2 Section 319.59-2 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) ANIMAL AND PLANT HEALTH INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOREIGN QUARANTINE NOTICES Wheat Diseases ...

  5. Sickle Cell Trait

    MedlinePLUS

    ... with SCT who participate in competitive or team sports (i.e. student athletes) should be careful when doing training or conditioning activities. To prevent illness it is important to: Set your own pace and build your intensity slowly. Rest often in between repetitive sets and ...

  6. Genetics of reproductive traits: Antagonisms with production traits

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Animal breeding and reproductive physiology have been closely related throughout the history of animal production science, because artificial insemination provides the best method of increasing the influence of sires with superior genetics to improve production traits. The addition of genetic techn...

  7. TraitBank: An Open Digital Repository for Organism Traits

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    TraitBank currently serves over 11 million measurements and facts for more than 1.7 million taxa. These data are mobilized from major biodiversity information systems (e.g., International Union for Conservation of Nature, Ocean Biogeographic Information System, Paleobiology Database), literature sup...

  8. Reciprocal influences between negative life events and callous-unemotional traits.

    PubMed

    Kimonis, Eva R; Centifanti, Luna C M; Allen, Jennifer L; Frick, Paul J

    2014-11-01

    Children with conduct problems and co-occurring callous-unemotional (CU) traits show more severe, stable, and aggressive antisocial behaviors than those without CU traits. Exposure to negative life events has been identified as an important contributing factor to the expression of CU traits across time, although the directionality of this effect has remained unknown due to a lack of longitudinal study. The present longitudinal study examined potential bidirectional effects of CU traits leading to experiencing more negative life events and negative life events leading to increases in CU traits across 3 years among a sample of community-based school-aged (M = 10.9, SD = 1.71 years) boys and girls (N = 98). Repeated rating measures of CU traits, negative life events and conduct problems completed by children and parents during annual assessments were moderately to highly stable across time. Cross-lagged models supported a reciprocal relationship of moderate magnitude between child-reported CU traits and "controllable" negative life events. Parent-reported CU traits predicted "uncontrollable" life events at the earlier time point and controllable life events at the later time point, but no reciprocal effect was evident. These findings have important implications for understanding developmental processes that contribute to the stability of CU traits in youth. PMID:24875593

  9. Modules in Agricultural Education for Agricultural Resources.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    New York State Education Dept., Albany. Bureau of Occupational and Career Curriculum Development.

    Each of the 31 curriculum modules in this packet for agricultural resources instruction contains a brief description of the module content, a list of the major division or units, the overall objective, objectives by units, content outline and suggested teaching methods, student application activities, and evaluation procedures. A list of resource

  10. Vocational Agriculture Education: Agricultural Livestock Skills.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pierce, Greg

    Ten units of instruction are provided in this curriculum guide on agricultural livestock skills. Unit topics are as follow: (1) restraining, (2) vaccination, (3) livestock castration, (4) dehorning, (5) docking, (6) growth stimulants, (7) identification, (8) shearing, (9) hoof trimming, and (10) birth assistance. Each instructional unit generally

  11. Modules in Agricultural Education for Agricultural Mechanics.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    New York State Education Dept., Albany. Bureau of Occupational and Career Curriculum Development.

    Each of the 38 curriculum modules in this packet for agricultural mechanics instruction contains a brief description of the module content, a list of the major divisions or units, the overall objectives, objectives by unit, content outline and suggested teaching methods, student application activities, and evaluation procedures. A listing of…

  12. Agriculture: access to technology limited.

    PubMed

    1997-01-01

    From country to country and even regionally, the roles of women in agriculture vary, but most of their labor is in unpaid subsistence production and their contributions tend to be underestimated, according to the results of the [UN] Secretary-General's report. Depending on circumstances, they have complementary roles with men, sharing or dividing tasks in the production of crops, care of animals, and forestry management. In sub-Saharan Africa, for example, women contribute 60-80% of labor in food production for both household consumption and sale, while in Malaysia the women account for only 35% of the agricultural labor force, and in Ireland the participation rate is only 10.4%. Although women make this important amount of labor contributions to agricultural production, "development policies tend to favor export crops to earn foreign exchange and the agricultural research tends to address the improvement of production and technologies for commercial production". This results in limited access for women to technical knowledge and innovations, including irrigation, machinery, farming techniques and extension services. This is strengthened by the fact that most of the extension services target farmers who own land and can obtain credit to invest in input and technology. PMID:12293737

  13. Identity Processes and Personality Traits and Types in Adolescence: Directionality of Effects and Developmental Trajectories

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Luyckx, Koen; Teppers, Eveline; Klimstra, Theo A.; Rassart, Jessica

    2014-01-01

    Personality traits are hypothesized to be among the most important factors contributing to individual differences in identity development. However, longitudinal studies linking Big Five personality traits to contemporary identity models (in which multiple exploration and commitment processes are distinguished) are largely lacking. To gain more…

  14. RNA-Seq identifies SNP markers for growth traits in rainbow trout

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Fast growth is an important and highly desired trait, which affects the profitability of food animal production, with feed costs accounting for the largest proportion of production costs. Traditional phenotype-based selection is typically used to select for growth traits; however, genetic improveme...

  15. How well do plant hydraulic traits predict species’ distributions across the world

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Climate–trait associations are becoming ever-more important as plant breeding and gene modification efforts enable the targeting of specific traits and specific genes. It is well-understood that climate represents a constraint to the evolution of plant species. Although this statement is intuitive...

  16. Differences in Offending Patterns between Adolescent Sex Offenders High or Low in Callous--Unemotional Traits

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lawing, Kathryn; Frick, Paul J.; Cruise, Keith R.

    2010-01-01

    In the present study, the authors investigated whether callous and unemotional (CU) traits designated a distinct and important group of adolescent sex offender. A sample of 150 detained adolescents (mean age = 15.89, SD = 1.53) with a current sexual offense disposition was assessed with a self-report measure of CU traits and through extensive

  17. Predictive Value of Callous-Unemotional Traits in a Large Community Sample

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Moran, Paul; Rowe, Richard; Flach, Clare; Briskman, Jacqueline; Ford, Tamsin; Maughan, Barbara; Scott, Stephen; Goodman, Robert

    2009-01-01

    Objective: Callous-unemotional (CU) traits in children and adolescents are increasingly recognized as a distinctive dimension of prognostic importance in clinical samples. Nevertheless, comparatively little is known about the longitudinal effects of these personality traits on the mental health of young people from the general population. Using a

  18. Identity Processes and Personality Traits and Types in Adolescence: Directionality of Effects and Developmental Trajectories

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Luyckx, Koen; Teppers, Eveline; Klimstra, Theo A.; Rassart, Jessica

    2014-01-01

    Personality traits are hypothesized to be among the most important factors contributing to individual differences in identity development. However, longitudinal studies linking Big Five personality traits to contemporary identity models (in which multiple exploration and commitment processes are distinguished) are largely lacking. To gain more

  19. Condition-dependent expression of pre- and postcopulatory sexual traits in guppies

    PubMed Central

    Rahman, Md Moshiur; Kelley, Jennifer L; Evans, Jonathan P

    2013-01-01

    Female choice can impose persistent directional selection on male sexually selected traits, yet such traits often exhibit high levels of phenotypic variation. One explanation for this paradox is that if sexually selected traits are costly, only the fittest males are able to acquire and allocate the resources required for their expression. Furthermore, because male condition is dependent on resource allocation, condition dependence in sexual traits is expected to underlie trade-offs between reproduction and other life-history functions. In this study we test these ideas by experimentally manipulating diet quality (carotenoid levels) and quantity in the guppy (Poecilia reticulata), a livebearing freshwater fish that is an important model for understanding relationships between pre- and post-copulatory sexually selected traits. Specifically, we test for condition dependence in the expression of pre- and postcopulatory sexual traits (behavior, ornamentation, sperm traits) and determine whether diet manipulation mediates relationships among these traits. Consistent with prior work we found a significant effect of diet quantity on the expression of both pre- and postcopulatory male traits; diet-restricted males performed fewer sexual behaviors and exhibited significant reductions in color ornamentation, sperm quality, sperm number, and sperm length than those fed ad libitum. However, contrary to our expectations, we found no significant effect of carotenoid manipulation on the expression of any of these traits, and no evidence for a trade-off in resource allocation between pre- and postcopulatory episodes of sexual selection. Our results further underscore the sensitivity of behavioral, ornamental, and ejaculate traits to dietary stress, and highlight the important role of condition dependence in maintaining the high variability in male sexual traits. PMID:23919162

  20. Identification of Immune Traits Correlated with Dairy Cow Health, Reproduction and Productivity

    PubMed Central

    Banos, Georgios; Wall, Eileen; Coffey, Michael P.; Bagnall, Ainsley; Gillespie, Sandra; Russell, George C.; McNeilly, Tom N.

    2013-01-01

    Detailed biological analyses (e.g. epidemiological, genetic) of animal health and fitness in the field are limited by the lack of large-scale recording of individual animals. An alternative approach is to identify immune traits that are associated with these important functions and can be subsequently used in more detailed studies. We have used an experimental dairy herd with uniquely dense phenotypic data to identify a range of potentially useful immune traits correlated with enhanced (or depressed) health and fitness. Blood samples from 248 dairy cows were collected at two-monthly intervals over a 10-month period and analysed for a number of immune traits, including levels of serum proteins associated with the innate immune response and circulating leukocyte populations. Immune measures were matched to individual cow records related to productivity, fertility and disease. Correlations between traits were calculated using bivariate analyses based on animal repeatability and random regression models with a Bonferroni correction to account for multiple testing. A number of significant correlations were found between immune traits and other recorded traits including: CD4+:CD8+ T lymphocyte ratio and subclinical mastitis; % CD8+ lymphocytes and fertility; % CD335+ natural killer cells and lameness episodes; and serum haptoglobin levels and clinical mastitis. Importantly these traits were not associated with reduced productivity and, in the case of cellular immune traits, were highly repeatable. Moreover these immune traits displayed significant between-animal variation suggesting that they may be altered by genetic selection. This study represents the largest simultaneous analysis of multiple immune traits in dairy cattle to-date and demonstrates that a number of immune traits are associated with health events. These traits represent useful selection markers for future programmes aimed at improving animal health and fitness. PMID:23776543

  1. De novo assembly of soybean wild relatives for pan-genome analysis of diversity and agronomic traits.

    PubMed

    Li, Ying-hui; Zhou, Guangyu; Ma, Jianxin; Jiang, Wenkai; Jin, Long-guo; Zhang, Zhouhao; Guo, Yong; Zhang, Jinbo; Sui, Yi; Zheng, Liangtao; Zhang, Shan-shan; Zuo, Qiyang; Shi, Xue-hui; Li, Yan-fei; Zhang, Wan-ke; Hu, Yiyao; Kong, Guanyi; Hong, Hui-long; Tan, Bing; Song, Jian; Liu, Zhang-xiong; Wang, Yaoshen; Ruan, Hang; Yeung, Carol K L; Liu, Jian; Wang, Hailong; Zhang, Li-juan; Guan, Rong-xia; Wang, Ke-jing; Li, Wen-bin; Chen, Shou-yi; Chang, Ru-zhen; Jiang, Zhi; Jackson, Scott A; Li, Ruiqiang; Qiu, Li-juan

    2014-10-01

    Wild relatives of crops are an important source of genetic diversity for agriculture, but their gene repertoire remains largely unexplored. We report the establishment and analysis of a pan-genome of Glycine soja, the wild relative of cultivated soybean Glycine max, by sequencing and de novo assembly of seven phylogenetically and geographically representative accessions. Intergenomic comparisons identified lineage-specific genes and genes with copy number variation or large-effect mutations, some of which show evidence of positive selection and may contribute to variation of agronomic traits such as biotic resistance, seed composition, flowering and maturity time, organ size and final biomass. Approximately 80% of the pan-genome was present in all seven accessions (core), whereas the rest was dispensable and exhibited greater variation than the core genome, perhaps reflecting a role in adaptation to diverse environments. This work will facilitate the harnessing of untapped genetic diversity from wild soybean for enhancement of elite cultivars. PMID:25218520

  2. Shifts and disruptions in resource-use trait syndromes during the evolution of herbaceous crops

    PubMed Central

    Milla, Rubén; Morente-López, Javier; Alonso-Rodrigo, J. Miguel; Martín-Robles, Nieves; Stuart Chapin, F.

    2014-01-01

    Trait-based ecology predicts that evolution in high-resource agricultural environments should select for suites of traits that enable fast resource acquisition and rapid canopy closure. However, crop breeding targets specific agronomic attributes rather than broad trait syndromes. Breeding for specific traits, together with evolution in high-resource environments, might lead to reduced phenotypic integration, according to predictions from the ecological literature. We provide the first comprehensive test of these hypotheses, based on a trait-screening programme of 30 herbaceous crops and their wild progenitors. During crop evolution plants became larger, which enabled them to compete more effectively for light, but they had poorly integrated phenotypes. In a subset of six herbaceous crop species investigated in greater depth, competitiveness for light increased during early plant domestication, whereas diminished phenotypic integration occurred later during crop improvement. Mass-specific leaf and root traits relevant to resource-use strategies (e.g. specific leaf area or tissue density of fine roots) changed during crop evolution, but in diverse and contrasting directions and magnitudes, depending on the crop species. Reductions in phenotypic integration and overinvestment in traits involved in competition for light may affect the chances of upgrading modern herbaceous crops to face current climatic and food security challenges. PMID:25185998

  3. Identifying Technical Content Training Needs of Georgia Agriculture Teachers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Peake, Jason B.; Duncan, Dennis W.; Ricketts, John C.

    2007-01-01

    The continuing trend toward increasing diversity of curriculum offered within secondary agricultural education programs is driving a change in pre-service and in-service technical training for agriculture teachers. This study looks at agriculture teachers' perceived importance of, and competence in, traditional technical competencies such as…

  4. Basic principles, methodology, and applications of remote sensing in agriculture

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Moreira, M. A. (Principal Investigator); Deassuncao, G. V.

    1984-01-01

    The basic principles of remote sensing applied to agriculture and the methods used in data analysis are described. Emphasis is placed on the importance of developing a methodology that may help crop forecast, basic concepts of spectral signatures of vegetation, the methodology of the LANDSAT data utilization in agriculture, and the remote sensing program application of INPE (Institute for Space Research) in agriculture.

  5. Innovations in information management to enhance agriculture: A research perspective

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Information management should be the cornerstone for innovative agricultural systems; however, the challenge remains on how to utilize all of the components to enhance agriculture. The enhancement of agriculture is often considered from only a yield perspective. This is an important factor and effo...

  6. Agricultural Chemicals and Radiation. Ag Ed Environmental Education Series.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tulloch, Rodney W.

    The document is designed to be used as a resource in teaching vocational agriculture high school students about the environment. Agricultural chemicals are the major focus, with some attention to radiation. The importance of safety in agricultural chemical use is stressed, with descriptions of the pesticide label; protective clothing; respiratory…

  7. 7 CFR 999.200 - Regulation governing the importation of prunes.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 8 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Regulation governing the importation of prunes. 999.200 Section 999.200 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (MARKETING AGREEMENTS AND ORDERS; FRUITS, VEGETABLES, NUTS), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE SPECIALTY CROPS; IMPORT REGULATIONS §...

  8. Antagonistic coevolution between quantitative and Mendelian traits.

    PubMed

    Yamamichi, Masato; Ellner, Stephen P

    2016-03-30

    Coevolution is relentlessly creating and maintaining biodiversity and therefore has been a central topic in evolutionary biology. Previous theoretical studies have mostly considered coevolution between genetically symmetric traits (i.e. coevolution between two continuous quantitative traits or two discrete Mendelian traits). However, recent empirical evidence indicates that coevolution can occur between genetically asymmetric traits (e.g. between quantitative and Mendelian traits). We examine consequences of antagonistic coevolution mediated by a quantitative predator trait and a Mendelian prey trait, such that predation is more intense with decreased phenotypic distance between their traits (phenotype matching). This antagonistic coevolution produces a complex pattern of bifurcations with bistability (initial state dependence) in a two-dimensional model for trait coevolution. Furthermore, with eco-evolutionary dynamics (so that the trait evolution affects predator-prey population dynamics), we find that coevolution can cause rich dynamics including anti-phase cycles, in-phase cycles, chaotic dynamics and deterministic predator extinction. Predator extinction is more likely to occur when the prey trait exhibits complete dominance rather than semidominance and when the predator trait evolves very rapidly. Our study illustrates how recognizing the genetic architectures of interacting ecological traits can be essential for understanding the population and evolutionary dynamics of coevolving species. PMID:27009218

  9. Invasive species in agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agricultural production of food, feed, fiber or fuel is a local human activity with global ecological impacts, including the potential to foster invasions. Agriculture plays an unusual role in biological invasions, in that it is both a source of non-indigenous invasive species (NIS) and especially s...

  10. Agriculture Power and Machinery.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rogers, Tom

    This guide is intended to assist vocational agriculture teachers who are teaching secondary- or postsecondary-level courses in agricultural power and machinery. The materials presented are based on the Arizona validated occupational competencies and tasks for the following occupations: service manager, shop foreman, service technician, and tractor

  11. Agricultural Occupations Handbook.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lark, Floyd J.; Henderson, Billie

    This agricultural occupations handbook was developed from the Dictionary of Occupational Titles (DOT) and the U.S. Departments of Health, Education, and Welfare, and Labor publication, Vocational Education and Occupations. It includes the U.S. Office of Education coding for the instructional area of agriculture and the cluster coding for the

  12. Theme: Marketing Agricultural Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Staller, Bernie L.; And Others

    1988-01-01

    Consists of six articles on marketing agricultural education. Topics include (1) being consumer conscious, (2) cooperating with agribusiness, (3) preparing students for postsecondary education, (4) allowing concurrent enrollments, (5) saving the failing agricultural program, and (6) refocusing the curriculum toward agrimarketing. (CH)

  13. Precision agricultural systems

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Precision agriculture is a new farming practice that has been developing since late 1980s. It has been variously referred to as precision farming, prescription farming, site-specific crop management, to name but a few. There are numerous definitions for precision agriculture, but the central concept...

  14. Vocational Agriculture I.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Patton, Bob; Harp, Keith

    These course materials are designed to provide a foundation of basic knowledge in production agriculture as a prelude to further education in vocational agriculture. The guide contains 6 sections and 22 units of instruction. Each unit includes all or most of eight basic components: performance objectives, suggested activities for the teacher,

  15. Agricultural Technology Opportunities.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    North Carolina State Board of Education, Raleigh. Agricultural Technology Education Section.

    Agricultural education programs available through North Carolina's newly created system of industrial education center, technical institutes, and community colleges are described. The information is for use by administrators, and teachers of adult agricultural courses and counselors of high school dropouts and graduates. It describes the need for

  16. Global Transformations and Agriculture.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Campbell, Rex R.

    1990-01-01

    Examines worldwide political, economic, and social transformations and their impact on agriculture, focusing on biotechnology. Discusses rise of international corporations and accompanying constraints on government power. Sees trend toward increasing agribusiness role in world food and agricultural sectors. Calls for broader views and research in

  17. IS RANGELAND AGRICULTURE SUSTAINABLE?

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agricultural enterprise sustainability is most often assessed by examining long-term ecological sustainability, short- and long-term economic viability, and social acceptance. From an ecological perspective, rangeland agriculture (i.e., managed grazing) is deemed fully sustainable providing the rang...

  18. Agricultural Technology Opportunities.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    North Carolina State Board of Education, Raleigh. Agricultural Technology Education Section.

    Agricultural education programs available through North Carolina's newly created system of industrial education center, technical institutes, and community colleges are described. The information is for use by administrators, and teachers of adult agricultural courses and counselors of high school dropouts and graduates. It describes the need for…

  19. Ecological Models: Agricultural Models

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The agricultural research community is faced with a wide array of complex problems to solve. Continued population increases in developing countries require increased agricultural production, while agroecosystems are being stressed and negatively impacted by greater use of water and agrochemicals. F...

  20. Vocational Agriculture I.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Patton, Bob; Harp, Keith

    These course materials are designed to provide a foundation of basic knowledge in production agriculture as a prelude to further education in vocational agriculture. The guide contains 6 sections and 22 units of instruction. Each unit includes all or most of eight basic components: performance objectives, suggested activities for the teacher,…